Archive for the month “December, 2013”

Roadmap for Sustainability, Equity and Peace

Note: Paper to be presented by Sagar Dhara, one of the founder-members of Peak Oil India Group, at the XXXVII Indian Social Science Congress, Aligarh Muslim University, 27-31 December, 2013

What is our share of energy in nature?  How should we distribute it?
Search for a roadmap to a sustainable, equitable and peaceful human society

Sagar Dhara1

To become sustainable, equitable and a peaceful society, humans must power down by at least 60%, become solar beings, distribute energy equitably and manage it democratically. For this, global outlook must change from Gain maximization for a few to Risk minimization for all species.  The formulation of sustainability indices and a wide public discussion for short and a medium term programmes for such a transition should be conducted. Read more…

Peak Oil India at AMU session on Energy

Note: Sagar Dhara, one of the  founder-members of the Peak Oil India group, will coordinate the session on energy at this upcoming conference at Aligarh Muslim University. 

Brainstorming session
What is our share of energy in nature?  How should we distribute it?
Search for a roadmap to a sustainable, equitable and peaceful human society
27-28 Dec 2013, 2 pm onwards
As part of the
XXXVII Indian Social Science Congress, Aligarh Muslim University, 27-31 2013
Human society faces unprecedented challenges today.  Global warming, peak oil, overdraw of energy from nature, rapid deterioration of the environment and of life support systems, and extreme inequity threaten to tear the fabric of human society to shreds.  Their impact—rise in global temperatures and variation in precipitation and their attendant consequences on every aspect of the environment, food and water insecurity, mass hunger, deprivation and disease, lawlessness, and possibly a civilizational collapse.

Read more…

News update

India’s Dangerous Food Bubble
Lester Brown, an expert on population and resources and a former consultant to the Government of India on its five year plans, writes on India’s looming food crisis. According to him, while the adoption of higher-yielding crop varieties and the spread of irrigation have led to a remarkable tripling of grain output in the country since the early 1960s, unfortunately, a growing share of the water that irrigates three-fifths of India’s grain harvest is coming from wells that are starting to go dry. Which means that the dietary foundation for about 190 million people could disappear with little warning.
From Los Angeles Times

Imminent peak oil could burst US, global economic bubble – study
The Guardian (UK) columnist Nafeez Ahmed points to a new multi-disciplinary study led by the University of Maryland calls for immediate action by government, private and commercial sectors to reduce vulnerability to the imminent threat of global peak oil, which could put the entire US economy and other major industrial economies at risk. The peer-reviewed study contradicts the recent claims within the oil industry that peak oil has been indefinitely offset by shale gas and other unconventional oil and gas resources.
From The Guardian

A Rain Forest Advocate Taps the Energy of the Sugar Palm
Tropical forest scientist Willie Smits, ­­after 30 years studying fragile ecosystems in these Southeast Asian islands, wants to draw world attention to a powerhouse of a tree—the Arenga sugar palm. Smits says it can be tapped for energy and safeguard the environment while enhancing local food security. The article is part of The Great Energy Challengea National Geographic series that explores energy-related issues.
From National Geographic

Fracking The Kalahari
The Botswana government has been silently pushing ahead with plans to produce natural gas, keeping the country in the dark as it grants concessions over vast tracts of land, including half of the Central Kalahari Game Reserve – the ancestral home of the bushmen. A recent expose of this by the UK’s Guardian newspaper has led to denials by the Botswana government. This may be a sign of things to come in India, where oil-industry spokespeople like former Shell India Chairman Vikram Mehta (speaking at the recent Tehelka Think Conference) are openly in favour of the government adopting controversial extraction technology.
From IC Magazine

Top 10 Reader’s Favorites – Resilience and Energy Bulletin (formerly EnergyBulletin) is one of the most popular sources of information on Peak Oil and the Transition movement online.. They are celebrating their 10th Anniversary by sharing the favorite reads suggested by their most active and engaged community members. Out of more than 50 suggested articles, these 10 topped the list.
From Post Carbon Institute

Population and Petroleum: Chairman Goodchild’s Little Black Book
Excerpts from TumblingTides: Population, Petroleum, and Systemic Collapse (Insomniac Press, 2013), a forthcoming title by Peter Goodchild, an insightful writer on Peak Oil and systemic collapse.
From Survive Peak Oil blog

Man, Conqueror of Nature, Dead at 408
A hard-hitting satirical piece on Peak Oil and its implications by blogger and writer John Michael Greer.
Man, the conqueror of Nature, died Monday night of a petroleum overdose, the medical examiner’s office confirmed this morning. The abstract representation of the human race was 408 years old. The official announcement has done nothing to quell the rumors of suicide and substance abuse that have swirled around the death scene since the first announcement yesterday morning, adding new legal wrinkles to the struggle already under way over Man’s inheritance.
From Arch Druid Report blog

Die, selfish gene, die
The selfish gene is one of the most successful science metaphors ever invented. Unfortunately, it’s wrong. David Dobbs draws on the latest – but lesser known – biological research to show how the ‘selfish gene’ theory propounded most famously by scientist and author Richard Dawkins, but the roots of which can be traced back to the ‘father of genetics’ Gregor Mendel, gets it all wrong. While not strictly topical to this blog, it makes for an excellent read for anyone interested in how individuals and groups relate and react to the environment, and the role genetics plays in this.

From Aeon Magazine

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