Endgame ahead

Archive for the ‘Ressource depletion’ Category

2052: A Global Forecast for the Next Forty Years

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2052: A Global Forecast for the Next Forty Years”, written by Jorgen Randers (Co-Author of “The Limits to Growth”, launched by the Club of Rome on May 7, raises the possibility that humankind might not survive on the planet if it continues on its path of over-consumption and short-termism.

In the Report author Jorgen Randers raises essential questions: How many people will the planet be able to support? Will the belief in endless growth crumble? Will runaway climate change take hold? Where will quality of life improve, and where will it decline? Using painstaking research, and drawing on contributions from more than 30 thinkers in the field, he concludes that:

– While the process of adapting humanity to the planet’s limitations has started, the human response could be too slow.
– The current dominant global economies, particularly the United States, will stagnate. Brazil, Russia, India, South Africa and ten leading emerging economies (referred to as ‘BRISE’ in the Report) will progress.
– But there will still be 3 billion poor in 2052.
– China will be a success story, because of its ability to act.
– Global population will peak in 2042, because of falling fertility in urban areas
– Global GDP will grow much slower than expected, because of slower productivity growth in mature economies.
– CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere will continue to grow and cause +2°C in 2052; temperatures will reach +2.8°C in 2080, which may well trigger self-reinforcing climate change.

Written by mo

December 2nd, 2012 at 6:47 pm

Dennis Meadows – Economics and Limits to Growth

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Watch this talk by Dennis Meadows at the Population Institute. It touches upon a vast number of important topics from resource depletion to overpopulation.

Written by mo

April 10th, 2012 at 6:06 pm

Living on a finite Planet, Jeremy Grantham

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On Thursday 15th December 2011 over 200 representatives from the international accounting and business communities, investors, government, academia and civil society gathered at St James’s Palace State Apartments to hear His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales speak about “the economic invisibility of nature” and consider how the value of the planet’s natural resources, ecosystems and biodiversity can be taken into account, fully and consistently, in economic, accounting and decision-making systems.

One of the featured presenters was Jeremy Grantham, Director, The Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment; Co-Founder GMO.

Click here for Jeremy Grantham’s presentation: Living on a Finite Planet

Click here to read Jeremy Grantham’s 2011 Q2 newsletter which discusses the issues around investment and resource depletion further

For access to all the quarterly newsletters prepared by Jeremy Grantham, please log on to the GMO website here

Visit for more information about The Prince’s Accounting for Sustainability Project (A4S)

Jeremy Grantham is a co-founder GMO, an investment management firm in Boston, where he is the firm’s chief investment strategist, a member of the board and an active member of its asset allocation division. In 1998 Jeremy and his wife Hannelore established the Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment. The Grantham Foundation seeks to protect and improve the health of the global environment. Its grants focus on climate change and biodiversity conservation, with an emphasis on international initiatives. Within these topic areas, the Grantham Foundation emphasizes (1) improved communication of the science of global climate change and biodiversity loss and (2) collaboration amongst leading non-governmental organizations and academic institutions. Key grant programs include the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics, Grantham Institute for Climate Change at Imperial College in London, and the Grantham Prize for Excellence in Environmental Journalism. Jeremy earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Sheffield (U.K.) and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

Written by mo

January 27th, 2012 at 11:55 pm

Michio Kaku on global suicide

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The physicist sees two major trends in the world today: the first is toward a multicultural, scientific, tolerant society; the other, as evidenced by terrorism, is fundamentalist and monocultural. Whichever one wins out will determine the fate of man

In this short clip he talks about the different types of civilization (type 1 – 3) and where he thinks we’re currently at and his perspectives for future development. Interestingly, he manages to pretty much summarize my personal point of view. He also manages to explain the sudden rise in terrorisms and religious nut jobs lately, which I think is absolutely spot on. Well worth watching.

Michio Kaku is an American theoretical physicist, the Henry Semat Professor of Theoretical Physics in the City College of New York of City University of New York, the co-founder of string field theory, and a “communicator” and “popularizer” of science.

Written by mo

December 31st, 2011 at 8:31 pm

Chris Martenson’s presentation on exponential growth

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In this video Chris Martenson, economic analyst at and author of ‘The Crash Course’, explains why he thinks that the coming 20 years are going to look completely unlike the last 20 years. In his presentation he focuses on the so-called three “Es”: Economy, Energy and Environment. He argues that at this point in time it is no longer possible to view either one of those topics separately from one another.

Since all our money is loaned onto existence, our economy has to grow exponentially. Martenson proves this point empirically by showing a 99.9% fit of the actual growth curve of the last 40 years to an exponential curve. If we wanted to continue on this path, our debt load would have to double again over the next 10 years. By continually increasing our debt relative to GDP we are making the assumption that our future will always be wealthier than our past. He believes that this assumption is flawed and that the debt loads are already unmanageable.

Martenson explains how exponential growth works and why it is so scary that our economy is based on it. In an example he illustrates how unimaginably fast things speed up towards the end of an exponential curve. He shows that an exponential chart can be found in every one of the three “E’s” for instance in GDP growth, oil production, water use or species extinction. Due to the natural limitations on resources, Martenson comes to the conclusion that we are facing a serious energy crisis.

This energy predicament is namely that the quantity of oil as well as the quality of oil are in decline. He shows that oil discoveries peaked in 1964 and oil production peaked 40 years later. Martenson also shows how our return on invested energy is rapidly declining — the “cheap and easy” oil fields have already been exploited. In 1930 the energy return for oil was 100:1 or greater. Today it is already down to 3:1 and newer technologies such as corn-based ethanol only provide a 1.5:1 return. Martenson predicts that the time in between oil shocks will get shorter and shorter and that oil prices will go much higher.

Not only oil but also other natural resources are being rapidly used up as well. At the current projected pace of use, known reserves for many metals and minerals will be gone within the next 10 to 20 years. The energy needed to get these non-renewable resources out of the ground is growing exponentially. So we live in a world that must grow, but can’t grow and is subject to depletion. The conclusion out of all this is that our money system is poorly designed and that we need to rethink how we do things as quickly as possible.

After finishing his presentation Chris Martenson answers questions regarding a rise in efficiency, alternative technologies and oil prices. He also responds to questions regarding electricity, shale gas, gold, silver, platinum, palladium, and uranium and the race for global resources.

This video was recorded on November 16 at the Gold & Silver Meeting 2011 in Madrid.

Written by mo

December 25th, 2011 at 3:11 pm

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