27 October 2009
by Charles Cresson Wood writing at 'Culture Change'
Even though the notion of peak oil is now frequently discussed in newspapers, magazines, TV shows, we the industrialized nations are not moving to new sources of energy, and new simplified low energy lifestyles, fast enough to avoid serious and painful adjustment problems. Dr. Fatih Birol, chief economist with the International Energy Administration, accurately summed it up when he recently said: "We must leave oil before it leaves us." Leaving oil will not only involve adopting alternatives such as wind and solar, it will involve dramatically changing our way of life so that we consume considerably less energy. The lifestyle changes that we must go through are dictated because there is no good substitute for petroleum, and because we just don't have the time to alter the petroleum-based energy infrastructure that has been built over the last 150 years.
The day of reckoning is a lot sooner than many of us would like it to be. We do not have decades to transition to alternative energy. It appears as though we have only a few years. We need to get underway with very serious efforts to transition away from petroleum immediately. Government agencies, businesses, non-profit organizations, families, and individuals should all be thinking hard about what their transition to a post-petroleum world looks like, and then promptly get into action with this transition.
Charles Cresson Wood, is a technology risk management consultant with Post-Petroleum Transportation in Mendocino, California. His most recent book is entitled "Kicking The Gasoline & Petro-Diesel Habit: A Business Manager's Blueprint For Action" (see kickingthegasoline.com). Working in the technology risk management field for 30 years, he is the author of over 330 articles and seven other books. His speaking and consulting work with 120+ organizations has taken him to 20 different countries around the world.