Face to Face with Ultimate Catastrophy

Oil refinery burn off flareIf you feel good at the moment, maybe you should move on or read this at a more appropriate time.

That out of the way, humans have passed the 7 billion people mark and mankind is still growing in size. Despite the most successful and largest campaign to put it under control – the one undertaken in China over the last few decades – that growth not only remains strong, but is also accelerating.

We have taken a large part of potentially arable land – the best, most fruitful parts, basically – away from the rest of the live world and dedicated it to producing food for ourselves and for the food of our food. And the food of our machines, as of late. Aside from all the nutrients, what we need from food is energy. At least 90% of that energy now comes from fossil fuels. In terms of food production, we are eating oil: look at your plate at your next meal and see how you feel about that. Many oil-extracting countries (the more wide-spread euphemism is “oil-producing”, but oil is not actually produced) have reached peak oil extraction: a point at which they cannot extract oil as fast as it is being consumed. Other oil-extracting countries treat the amount of oil they can still extract as a state secret of the highest rank, but Continue reading “Face to Face with Ultimate Catastrophy”