Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Peak Oil - someone has finally noticed there is an elephant in the room.

The Independent yesterday gave its front page over to Peak Oil. Fair play to them for bringing it into public consciousness - a mere 53 years after Hubbert first raised the science of oil field depletion. As Eyore said, Give Rabbit time, and he'll always get the answer".

Or if you prefer, it is 27 years since the Club of Rome published "Limits to Growth".

Jeremy Leggett, writing in the Indie, quotes Gillian Tett, writing about how the financial experts failed to notice what was going on with the derivatives market. Elites exert "ideological domination" to maintain power, and determine what can be discussed in the public sphere, and what will be dismissed as idealistic woolly hatted conspiracy theory nonsense.

For 30 years the Green Party have been speaking sweet reason about the need to challenge the world's manic belief that it is possible to expand forever in a limited space. We have to continue with this reason, but at the same time, we have to appreciate that our target audience of opinion formers is not in fact driven by reason, but by irrational short term self interest. The thing that will bring about change is not intellectual argument, but reality. The limits to growth will only be generally appreciated when the train actually crashes into the buffers at the end of the track.



Duncan said...

This is so blindingly obvious, but it is one of those things that people just completely put out of their minds. Like you say, the "elephant in the room". I was aware of this when I was about 10 years old.

weggis said...

Which if you are 11 now doesn't mean much!

bigbluemeanie said...

It was covered in my Geography school text book 30 years ago along with an interesting chapter on The Greenhouse Effect. The book itself might have been published 5 or so years before that.

weggis said...

I know, I was just being pedantic about making assumptions about what the reader knows. Like Duncan's age.