Peak oil

Alleviating worldly suffering along the way.

Re: Peak oil

Postby dzogchungpa » Sat Jan 18, 2014 12:47 am

Note that, in the higher tantras, there is talk of a self and an I, even though in the lower teachings the absence of self and the absence of I is what is always proclaimed. - Tony Duff
To educate the educated is notoriously difficult. - Jacques Barzun
སརྦ་དྷརྨ་དྷཱ་ཏུ་ཨཱཏྨ་ཀོ་྅ཧཾ༔
User avatar
dzogchungpa
 
Posts: 2011
Joined: Sat May 28, 2011 10:50 pm

Re: Peak oil

Postby Kim O'Hara » Sun Jan 26, 2014 6:28 am


Thanks for this and the preceding link - authoritative, and very clear about the situation and the risks it implies.
Roll on solar energy!!

:namaste:
Kim
User avatar
Kim O'Hara
 
Posts: 792
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2012 1:09 am
Location: North Queensland, Australia

Re: Peak oil

Postby Indrajala » Sun Jan 26, 2014 10:22 am

One good resource exploring peak oil is the following blog:

http://ourfiniteworld.com/

She points out that the real problem is not peak oil so much as financial limits. When extracting oil costs more than it produces, the system will halt. The idea that economic forces will take care of such risks is common knowledge, but actually based on false assumptions.
Flower Ornament Depository (Blog)
Indrajāla's Contemplations (Blog)
Exploring Classical Chinese (Blog)
Dharma Depository (Site)

"Hui gives me no assistance. There is nothing that I say in which he does not delight." -Confucius
User avatar
Indrajala
 
Posts: 5863
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 3:19 pm
Location: Nepal

Re: Peak oil

Postby Indrajala » Sun Jan 26, 2014 10:30 am

Zhen Li wrote:New technologies and discoveries of course may emerge, who knows. Whenever I bring this up with one of my friends at Ames I get a lecture about how thorium reactors are going to be the wave of the future. We'll know sooner or later.


Joseph Tainter has pointed out in his work that innovation is becoming increasingly costly. We're suffering diminishing returns. It takes more scientists and more funding to get less and less useful discoveries. The amount of patents per X number of scientists has also greatly decreased over the decades. This means there are limits to innovation, which makes sense if you think about it, but the belief in perpetual progress blinds people to such a reality.

Such a belief will actually be our undoing. Instead of seriously dealing with pollution, there's discussion of geo-engineering, which requires continual dispersal of substances into the atmosphere, all of which depends on an industrial infrastructure. Technology in all its benevolence is expected to provide a salve to our environmental sins.
Flower Ornament Depository (Blog)
Indrajāla's Contemplations (Blog)
Exploring Classical Chinese (Blog)
Dharma Depository (Site)

"Hui gives me no assistance. There is nothing that I say in which he does not delight." -Confucius
User avatar
Indrajala
 
Posts: 5863
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 3:19 pm
Location: Nepal

Re: Peak oil

Postby Kim O'Hara » Sun Jan 26, 2014 11:43 am

Indrajala wrote:One good resource exploring peak oil is the following blog:

http://ourfiniteworld.com/

She points out that the real problem is not peak oil so much as financial limits. When extracting oil costs more than it produces, the system will halt. The idea that economic forces will take care of such risks is common knowledge, but actually based on false assumptions.

As I have pointed out several times already, Gail Tverberg (your favourite blogger) has such an extremely narrow view of reality that nothing she says is worth listening to.
Please read more widely and more wisely.

:namaste:
Kim
User avatar
Kim O'Hara
 
Posts: 792
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2012 1:09 am
Location: North Queensland, Australia

Re: Peak oil

Postby Kim O'Hara » Sun Jan 26, 2014 11:55 am

Indrajala wrote:
Zhen Li wrote:New technologies and discoveries of course may emerge, who knows. Whenever I bring this up with one of my friends at Ames I get a lecture about how thorium reactors are going to be the wave of the future. We'll know sooner or later.


Joseph Tainter has pointed out in his work that innovation is becoming increasingly costly. We're suffering diminishing returns. It takes more scientists and more funding to get less and less useful discoveries. The amount of patents per X number of scientists has also greatly decreased over the decades. This means there are limits to innovation, which makes sense if you think about it, but the belief in perpetual progress blinds people to such a reality.

True.

Indrajala wrote:Such a belief will actually be our undoing.

Not necessarily true. I have great faith in our ability to avoid the worst consequences of our own stupidity - after all, we have been doing just that, on an individual level, since we were vulnerable little proto-mammals running around under the feet of the dinosaurs.

Indrajala wrote:Instead of seriously dealing with pollution, there's discussion of geo-engineering, which requires continual dispersal of substances into the atmosphere, all of which depends on an industrial infrastructure. Technology in all its benevolence is expected to provide a salve to our environmental sins.

Geo-engineering is generally recognised as a last-ditch strategy by anyone with any understanding of the problems, but other technological innovations are doing rather better. In the end, we will almost certainly see a patchwork of partial solutions ... but you have drifted :offtopic: into climate change which already has a thread of its own. Perhaps you can continue discussing this issue over there? Especially if you have anything new to contribute ...

:namaste:
Kim
back from holidays :smile:
User avatar
Kim O'Hara
 
Posts: 792
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2012 1:09 am
Location: North Queensland, Australia

Re: Peak oil

Postby Zhen Li » Sun Jan 26, 2014 5:42 pm

Kim O'Hara wrote:As I have pointed out several times already, Gail Tverberg (your favourite blogger) has such an extremely narrow view of reality that nothing she says is worth listening to.
Please read more widely and more wisely.

Kim, you and your blacklists. :rules:
Indrajala wrote:Joseph Tainter has pointed out in his work that innovation is becoming increasingly costly. We're suffering diminishing returns. It takes more scientists and more funding to get less and less useful discoveries. The amount of patents per X number of scientists has also greatly decreased over the decades. This means there are limits to innovation, which makes sense if you think about it, but the belief in perpetual progress blinds people to such a reality.

Welcome back Indrajala, I haven't seen you on the forum for a while.

For the most part I'd agree, but there may be exceptions if technological singularity is a real thing. I think within the paradigm of carbon based technology, there is a limit to how efficient and complex we can make the global system. Tainter writes that the time of collapses in complex systems, it's often viewed as the preferable alternative to maintaining that complex system - this will clearly be the case with carbon based technology. At the same time, I think we should be careful how much we implore governments to take the lead in this matter, because government management tends to decrease opportunities in general for obvious reasons. Where great opportunities do exist, they will be taken. The post carbon market will be a great opportunity for many entrepreneurs. The issue is, governments don't see unprofitability in the present (as continuing attempts at funding differing innovation presents, as Tainter points out), as a problem, because they don't view debt as an issue so they'll continue wasting money on it.
Image
User avatar
Zhen Li
 
Posts: 930
Joined: Sun Apr 07, 2013 8:15 am

Re: Peak oil

Postby reddust » Sun Jan 26, 2014 6:46 pm

I am using compost (chicken poop) to heat my seedling cold frames and green house this year. The heat will give me a 3 week jump on planting season! I will be using no electrical to heat my greenhouse :twothumbsup: Poop energy! I grow 3/4 of all the food we eat on 1/4 acre.
Mind and mental events are concepts, mere postulations within the three realms of samsara Longchenpa .... A link to my Garden, Art and Foodie blog Scratch Living
User avatar
reddust
 
Posts: 761
Joined: Thu Nov 14, 2013 7:29 am
Location: Oregon

Re: Peak oil

Postby dzogchungpa » Sun Jan 26, 2014 7:23 pm

Note that, in the higher tantras, there is talk of a self and an I, even though in the lower teachings the absence of self and the absence of I is what is always proclaimed. - Tony Duff
To educate the educated is notoriously difficult. - Jacques Barzun
སརྦ་དྷརྨ་དྷཱ་ཏུ་ཨཱཏྨ་ཀོ་྅ཧཾ༔
User avatar
dzogchungpa
 
Posts: 2011
Joined: Sat May 28, 2011 10:50 pm

Re: Peak oil

Postby Indrajala » Sun Jan 26, 2014 8:02 pm

Zhen Li wrote: I think within the paradigm of carbon based technology, there is a limit to how efficient and complex we can make the global system.


Fossil fuels enable the vast complexity we already have. Anything else would not permit such levels of complexity. A tall-ship from the early 19th century was complex, but not like, say, a billion dollar offshore oil rig complete with GPS and all the complexity that includes. So, when fossil fuels became largely unavailable, we'll not be able to support such high levels of complexity, but nevertheless our present systems all depend on it which means either rapid adaptation of simpler models or collapse.

Unfortunately as Tainter points out, you seldom see in history societies willing to voluntarily reduce their complexity.
Flower Ornament Depository (Blog)
Indrajāla's Contemplations (Blog)
Exploring Classical Chinese (Blog)
Dharma Depository (Site)

"Hui gives me no assistance. There is nothing that I say in which he does not delight." -Confucius
User avatar
Indrajala
 
Posts: 5863
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 3:19 pm
Location: Nepal

Re: Peak oil

Postby Kim O'Hara » Tue Jan 28, 2014 12:13 am

Zhen Li wrote:
Kim O'Hara wrote:As I have pointed out several times already, Gail Tverberg (your favourite blogger) has such an extremely narrow view of reality that nothing she says is worth listening to.
Please read more widely and more wisely.

Kim, you and your blacklists. :rules:

Zhen Li,
(1) What on earth is the :rules: smiley supposed to mean here?
(2) Have you looked up Tverberg's background? If not, you have no foundation for commenting on my rating of her. If you have, how do you justify valuing her thoughts above those of http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/site/2014/2006.xhtml, cited and quoted in dzogchungpa's recently-posted links?

It's all about the quality of our information sources. If we read ill-informed and biased writers, the foundations of our knowledge are as cracked as they are.

:namaste:
Kim
User avatar
Kim O'Hara
 
Posts: 792
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2012 1:09 am
Location: North Queensland, Australia

Re: Peak oil

Postby Kim O'Hara » Tue Jan 28, 2014 12:22 am

Indrajala wrote:
Zhen Li wrote: I think within the paradigm of carbon based technology, there is a limit to how efficient and complex we can make the global system.


Fossil fuels enable the vast complexity we already have. Anything else would not permit such levels of complexity. A tall-ship from the early 19th century was complex, but not like, say, a billion dollar offshore oil rig complete with GPS and all the complexity that includes. So, when fossil fuels became largely unavailable, we'll not be able to support such high levels of complexity, but nevertheless our present systems all depend on it which means either rapid adaptation of simpler models or collapse.

Unfortunately as Tainter points out, you seldom see in history societies willing to voluntarily reduce their complexity.

Hi, Indrajala,
That's all true except for the sentence I've bolded and its consequence which I've italicised.
Rapid adaptation will be necessary, but "simpler models" isn't the only way forward. We can be much smarter about energy efficiency, for instance - and it's already happening. We can move to renewables - and it's already happening. We can slow our population growth - and that has already happened in the West and I see no reason the developing world won't naturally follow the same path as it follows us through the same developmental sequence.
"Interesting times", yes, but not collapse.

:namaste:
Kim
User avatar
Kim O'Hara
 
Posts: 792
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2012 1:09 am
Location: North Queensland, Australia

Re: Peak oil

Postby Malcolm » Tue Jan 28, 2014 1:41 am

Kim O'Hara wrote:We can be much smarter about energy efficiency, for instance - and it's already happening.


Jevons observed that England's consumption of coal soared after James Watt introduced his coal-fired steam engine, which greatly improved the efficiency of Thomas Newcomen's earlier design.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jevons_paradox

So no, I don't share your technological enthusiasm. I am rather skeptical of it, actually.

We can slow our population growth - and that has already happened in the West and I see no reason the developing world won't naturally follow the same path as it follows us through the same developmental sequence.


This is certainly a desiderata. And indeed, world population appears to be declining on the whole.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

-- Buddha Samantabhadri
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 11768
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Peak oil

Postby Kim O'Hara » Tue Jan 28, 2014 12:26 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Kim O'Hara wrote:We can be much smarter about energy efficiency, for instance - and it's already happening.


Jevons observed that England's consumption of coal soared after James Watt introduced his coal-fired steam engine, which greatly improved the efficiency of Thomas Newcomen's earlier design.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jevons_paradox

So no, I don't share your technological enthusiasm. I am rather skeptical of it, actually.

Hi, Malcolm,
IMO the Jevons paradox doesn't really apply in the peak oil context, as even the page you linked to says:
The Jevons paradox is sometimes used to argue that energy conservation efforts are futile, for example, that more efficient use of oil will lead to increased demand, and will not slow the arrival or the effects of peak oil. This argument is usually presented as a reason not to impose environmental policies, or to increase fuel efficiency (e.g. if cars are more efficient, it will simply lead to more driving).[7][8] Several points have been raised against this argument. First, in the context of a mature market such as for oil in developed countries, the direct rebound effect is usually small, and so increased fuel efficiency usually reduces resource use, other conditions remaining constant.[6][9][10] Second, even if increased efficiency does not reduce the total amount of fuel used, there remain other benefits associated with improved efficiency. For example, increased fuel efficiency may mitigate the price increases, shortages and disruptions in the global economy associated with peak oil.[11] Third, environmental economists have pointed out that fuel use will unambiguously decrease if increased efficiency is coupled with an intervention (e.g. a green tax) that keeps the cost of fuel use the same or higher.[3]

In particular, oil scarcity and its consequential high price functions as "an intervention ... that keeps the cost of fuel use the same or higher."

That doesn't mean we don't have a problem, of course, just that Jevons will be the least of our worries. The next ten or twenty years are going to be enormously challenging and will reshape our world as dramatically as the original Industrial Revolution.

:namaste:
Kim
User avatar
Kim O'Hara
 
Posts: 792
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2012 1:09 am
Location: North Queensland, Australia

Re: Peak oil

Postby Zhen Li » Tue Jan 28, 2014 2:16 pm

Kim O'Hara wrote:(1) What on earth is the :rules: smiley supposed to mean here?
(2) Have you looked up Tverberg's background? If not, you have no foundation for commenting on my rating of her. If you have, how do you justify valuing her thoughts above those of http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/site/2014/2006.xhtml, cited and quoted in dzogchungpa's recently-posted links?

It's all about the quality of our information sources. If we read ill-informed and biased writers, the foundations of our knowledge are as cracked as they are.

If everyone read only writers who the cathedral sanctioned, Galileo would be a footnote in history.
Image
User avatar
Zhen Li
 
Posts: 930
Joined: Sun Apr 07, 2013 8:15 am

Re: Peak oil

Postby dzogchungpa » Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:14 pm

Malcolm wrote:... indeed, world population appears to be declining on the whole.

Imagesvg
Note that, in the higher tantras, there is talk of a self and an I, even though in the lower teachings the absence of self and the absence of I is what is always proclaimed. - Tony Duff
To educate the educated is notoriously difficult. - Jacques Barzun
སརྦ་དྷརྨ་དྷཱ་ཏུ་ཨཱཏྨ་ཀོ་྅ཧཾ༔
User avatar
dzogchungpa
 
Posts: 2011
Joined: Sat May 28, 2011 10:50 pm

Re: Peak oil

Postby Malcolm » Tue Jan 28, 2014 10:34 pm

dzogchungpa wrote:
Malcolm wrote:... indeed, world population appears to be declining on the whole.

Imagesvg


Right, it means that according to UN estimates, word population in 2150 could be as high as 25 trillion, the red line, or as low s 3.5 trillion, the green line. According to the report, the mathematical model favors the low number.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

-- Buddha Samantabhadri
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 11768
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Peak oil

Postby Kim O'Hara » Tue Jan 28, 2014 11:00 pm

Zhen Li wrote:
Kim O'Hara wrote:(1) What on earth is the :rules: smiley supposed to mean here?
(2) Have you looked up Tverberg's background? If not, you have no foundation for commenting on my rating of her. If you have, how do you justify valuing her thoughts above those of http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/site/2014/2006.xhtml, cited and quoted in dzogchungpa's recently-posted links?

It's all about the quality of our information sources. If we read ill-informed and biased writers, the foundations of our knowledge are as cracked as they are.

If everyone read only writers who the cathedral sanctioned, Galileo would be a footnote in history.

If you want to go back to renaissance Italy you will have to give up the internet ... which is another way of saying things don't work that way now.
Please answer my questions.

:jedi:
Kim
User avatar
Kim O'Hara
 
Posts: 792
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2012 1:09 am
Location: North Queensland, Australia

Re: Peak oil

Postby dzogchungpa » Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:09 am

Malcolm wrote:
dzogchungpa wrote:
Malcolm wrote:... indeed, world population appears to be declining on the whole.
Right, it means that according to UN estimates, word population in 2150 could be as high as 25 trillion, the red line, or as low s 3.5 trillion, the green line. According to the report, the mathematical model favors the low number.

The point being that world population is increasing, not declining. It's the rate of population growth that is declining. If that chart is to be believed world population will not begin to decline until after 2040, at the earliest. I'm sure you understand, but others might be confused. Also, you mean 'billion' not 'trillion'.
Note that, in the higher tantras, there is talk of a self and an I, even though in the lower teachings the absence of self and the absence of I is what is always proclaimed. - Tony Duff
To educate the educated is notoriously difficult. - Jacques Barzun
སརྦ་དྷརྨ་དྷཱ་ཏུ་ཨཱཏྨ་ཀོ་྅ཧཾ༔
User avatar
dzogchungpa
 
Posts: 2011
Joined: Sat May 28, 2011 10:50 pm

Re: Peak oil

Postby Malcolm » Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:46 am

dzogchungpa wrote:Also, you mean 'billion' not 'trillion'.


Yup.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

-- Buddha Samantabhadri
User avatar
Malcolm
 
Posts: 11768
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

PreviousNext

Return to Engaged Buddhism

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests

>