Urgent Evoke

A crash course in changing the world.

Oil crunch 2012?? Local disaster

If this article in the Guardian is correct, the US military are predicting that global oil reserves will be gone by
. I think this will have a huge impact on our local lives in thedeveloped world. We are hugely dependent on the global transport network for almost every daily need.

What's the situation where you live? What would bite first if there was an interruption in fossil fuels supply to your area and you couldn't
use any oil for transport for, say, one week?

What's the situation in your local area? Are you doing anything to prepare? Is there community organizing going on?

I think this is the situation I will be looking at for my Mission 7, Urban Resilience plan.

Views: 42

Comment by Sarah Shaw Tatoun on May 8, 2010 at 5:18pm
Wow! What an eye-opener! Thanks for this link, Starling. It's startling to see that the US military has made this kind of prediction without any press coverage that I've seen in the American press. Good questions you ask. I'll have to start doing some research on this.
Comment by Starling on May 8, 2010 at 8:43pm
Thanks Sarah. In 1990 protestors blocked oil depots with lorries for three days and the UK Government took emergency powers to sort it out. I can remember massive queues at pump stations, being told only health service workers were allowed to fill up and so on. I don't think any other modern service bites developed nations as hard and fast as oil shortage and it seems from that article that it will bite all at once in a couple of years. I don't imagine my local supermarket will be up to the price wars for supply-limited oil in the global economy. It could change everything fast - maybe nearly fast enough to stop climate change??
Comment by A.V.Koshy on May 8, 2010 at 8:56pm
oil crunch may be good starling
Comment by Sarah Shaw Tatoun on May 9, 2010 at 12:15am
Yes, from what I understand, car use is one of the major contributors of greenhouse gases (New York City is the greenest city in the US just because it's so walkable and relatively few people, compared to other US cities, use cars). The oil crunch caused by the oil embargo in the 70's actually resulted in some major positive changes. I don't remember it as being so very terrible, either-- although there was some violence caused by queue jumping, and we all had to get locks on our gas caps to keep people from siphoning it off in the middle of the night. We were allowed to fill up our tanks every other day and the lines were long-- ironically meaning that lots of gas was wasted as people idled their cars waiting for their turn. But overall I think people adjusted quickly and didn't feel a huge impact on their lives. Now it would probably be much easier because the crime rate is so much lower-- meaning people wouldn't feel the need to stick to their locked cars for safety.

The main impact I would worry about is on the developing world. If transportation costs leap dramatically they may not be able to use exports to fuel their economies-- and lower growth may cause political instability, especially in countries with large youth populations which need economic growth to provide jobs for them. We'll have to hope that rising oil prices will mean some of the renewable energy sources will become competitive quickly enough to keep the large developing economies 'in business'.
Comment by Starling on May 9, 2010 at 1:51pm
Thanks, that's a VERY good point Sarah.


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