Our Energy Problem Is a Quantity Problem

(This post consists of a short overview article I recently wrote for Transform, a magazine for Environment and Sustainability Professionals, plus six related Questions and Answers.)

Reading many of today’s energy articles, it is easy to get the impression that our energy problem is a quality problem—some energy is polluting; other energy is hoped to be less polluting.

There is a different issue that we are not being told about. It is the fact that having enough energy is terribly important, as well. Total world energy consumption has risen quickly over time.

Figure 1. World Energy Consumption by Source, based on Vaclav Smil estimates from Energy Transitions: History, Requirements and Prospects and together with BP Statistical Data for years 1965 and subsequent.

In fact, the amount of energy consumed, on average, by each person (also called “per capita”) has continued to rise, except for two flat periods.

Figure 2. World per Capita Energy Consumption with two circles relating to flat consumption. World Energy Consumption by Source, based on Vaclav Smil estimates from Energy Transitions: History, Requirements and Prospects (Appendix) together with BP Statistical Data for 1965 and subsequent, divided by population estimates by Angus Maddison.

There is a good reason why energy consumed has risen over time on a per capita basis. Every human being needs energy products, as does every business. Energy is what allows food to be cooked and homes to be heated. Energy products allow businesses to manufacture and transport goods. Without energy products of all kinds, workers would be less productive in their jobs. Thus, it would be hard for the world economy to grow.

When energy consumption per capita is rising, it is easy for workers to become more productive because the economy is building more tools (broadly defined) for them to use, making their work easier. Manufacturing cell phones and computers requires energy. Even things like roads, pipelines, and electricity transmission lines are built using energy.

Once energy consumption growth flattens, as it did in the 1920-1940 period, the world economy is negatively affected. The Great Depression of the 1930s occurred during the 1920-1940 period. Problems, in fact, started even earlier. Coal production in the United Kingdom started to drop in 1914, the same year that World War I began. The Great Depression didn’t end until World War II, which was immediately after the 1920-1940 period.

In the 1920-1940 period, many people, especially farmers, were not able to earn an adequate living. This is a situation not too different from the one today, in which many young people are not able to earn an adequate living. Strange as it may seem, this type of wage disparity is a sign of inadequate energy per capita, because jobs that pay well require energy consumption.

The 1980-2000 flat period was in many ways not as bad as the earlier one, because the lack of growth in energy consumption was planned. The United States changed to smaller, more energy-efficient cars in order to reduce the amount of gasoline consumed. Oil-powered electricity generation was taken out of service and replaced with other types of generation, such as nuclear. Heating of homes and businesses was changed to more efficient systems that did not burn oil.

The indirect effect of the planned reduction in oil consumption was a drop in oil prices. Low oil prices adversely affected all oil exporters, but the Soviet Union was especially affected. Its central government collapsed, at least partly because of its reduced revenue stream. Member republics continued to operate, somewhat as in the past. Russia and Ukraine cut back greatly on their industrialization, leading to less use of energy products. Population tended to drop, as citizens found better work prospects elsewhere.

Eventually, in the early 2000s, oil prices rose again. Russia was able to become a major oil exporter again, but Ukraine and other industrialized areas were permanently handicapped by the collapse. Countries affiliated with the Soviet Union (including Eastern European countries, North Korea, and Cuba) found themselves permanently lagging behind the US and Western Europe.

Recently (2013-2017), the world economy seems to have again reached a period of flat energy consumption, on a per capita basis.

Figure 3. Based on data of BP Statistical Review of World Energy, 2017, and 2017 UN Population Estimates.

In fact, in many ways the flattening looks like that of the 1920 to 1940 period. Increased wage disparity is again becoming a problem. Oil gluts are again becoming a problem, because those at the bottom of the wage hierarchy cannot afford goods using oil, such as motorcycles. Young people are finding their standards of living falling relative to the living standards of their parents. They cannot afford to buy a home and have a family. Governments are becoming less interested in cooperating with other governments.

Why is world energy consumption per capita flat, or actually falling slightly, after 2013? The answer seems to be diminishing returns with respect to coal production. Diminishing returns refers to the fact that while at first coal is inexpensive to extract, the cost of extraction rises after the thickest seams and those closest to the surface have been extracted.

A chart of China’s energy production shows how China’s coal production first rose as low cost made its usage advantageous, and then fell due to diminishing returns. China experienced a major ramp-up in coal production after it was added to the World Trade Organization in 2001.

Figure 4. China’s energy production, based on data from BP Statistical Review of World Energy, 2017.

As the extraction of coal progressed, China found itself with many mines with rising production costs. Coal prices did not rise to match the higher cost of production, so a large number of unprofitable mines were closed, starting in about 2012.

A major reason for the flat world per capita energy consumption starting in 2013 is the fall in China’s coal production after 2013. Coal production is falling in quite a number of other countries as well, as the cost of production rises, and as users become aware of coal’s environmental issues. Other sources of energy have not been rising sufficiently to keep total per capita energy consumption rising. A person can see in the China chart that wind and solar production are not rising sufficiently to offset its loss of coal production. (Wind and solar are part of Other Renewables.) This situation occurs elsewhere, as well.

What role do wind and solar play in maintaining world energy supply? The truth is, very little. While a great deal of money has been spent building them, wind and solar together amounted to only about 1% of total world primary energy supply in 2015, according to the International Energy Association.

A major problem is that wind and solar do not scale well. As larger quantities are added to electricity networks, more workarounds for their intermittency (such as batteries and long distance transmission) are needed. Bid prices for wind and solar give a misleadingly low impression of their real cost, unless the projects include many hours’ worth of storage to offset the impact of intermittency.

The key to rising energy consumption seems to be the falling cost of energy services, when efficiency is included. For example, the cost of delivering a package of a given size a given distance must be falling, relative to inflation. Similarly, the cost of heating a home of a given size must be falling. Governments must be able to tax producers of energy products, rather than providing subsidies.

Globalization requires ever-expanding energy supplies to meet the needs of a rising world population. To maintain globalization, we need a growing supply of energy products that are very cheap and scalable. Unfortunately, wind and solar don’t seem to meet our needs. Fossil fuels are no longer cheap to extract, because we extracted the resources that were least expensive to extract first. Our problem today is that we have not been able to find substitutes that are sufficiently cheap, non-polluting, and scalable.

A Few Related Questions and Answers:

(1) What is the biggest impediment to raising total energy consumption?

We cannot get the price of oil and of other fuels to rise high enough, for long enough, to encourage the production of the fossil fuel supplies that seem to be in the ground. What happens, instead, is that energy prices hit an affordability limit and fall back.

Figure 5. NASDAQ three month price chart for Brent Crude oil. Source: NASDAQ

The recent strike in Brazil over high diesel prices shows the kind of issues that occur. Oil prices are still far below what many oil exporters (such as Norway, Venezuela, and Iraq) really need, when needed taxes are included.

Of course, the problem with not being able to get prices high enough also discourages the use of alternatives to fossil fuels, such as wind and solar.

(2) Aren’t wind and solar low-cost approaches?

It is easy to think that wind and solar will be huge improvements over burning fossil fuels directly for fuel, but nearly all of these analyses overlook the problems that are added by introducing intermittency to the electric grid. The assumption was made in early analyses that with enough scale, intermittency in one location would tend to offset intermittency in another location. Also, it was hoped that electricity consumption could be shifted to different times of day.

There have been several recent analyses that look more closely at these assumptions. Jean-Marc Jancovici has shown that if sufficient storage is added for wind and solar to make it “dispatchable,” it takes an order of magnitude more physical resources to produce wind and solar compared to what it takes to produce the dispatchable nuclear electricity used in France. Both have low long-term operating costs. Thus, we would expect the true cost of wind and solar to be far higher than France’s nuclear electricity.

Roger Andrews, writing on Euan Mearns site Energy Matters, shows that some recent solar and wind auction prices appear to be far below actual costs, when reasonable minimum cost assumptions are used.

Regarding “Demand Response” as a solution to intermittency, Roger Andrews shows how little time of day pricing for consumers affects consumption curves. It appears that people don’t stop eating dinner after they get home in the evening, no matter how high the cost of electricity is at that time.

Interruptible supply is another way of reducing demand. This link describes some of the issues encountered when interruptible supply was tried on a large scale in California.

(3) Can’t we simply get along using less energy? That is what everyone tells us is possible.

The historical record in Figure 2 doesn’t give much indication that this is possible. Whenever there is even a small drop in energy consumption per capita, it seems to have an adverse effect. On Figure 3, even the small dip in energy consumption per capita in 2008 and 2009 led to a serious recession in many countries of the world.

The people who talk about getting along with less energy haven’t thought through the likely ramifications of this. There would be fewer jobs that pay well, because jobs such as those for construction workers would disappear. The economy would shrink, because of the fewer jobs, in a much worse recession than the Great Recession of 2008-2009.

We know that in past collapses, one of the big problems was inability of governments to collect enough taxes. We would likely encounter the same problem again, if there are fewer people making high wages. Most of the tax dollars for the US Federal Government are paid by private citizens (as income taxes or as Social Security funding), rather than by corporations.

Figure 7. Sources of US Federal Governments Revenue, based on US Bureau of Economic Analysis data.

The last year shown on Figure 7 is 2017, which is before the recent corporate tax reduction. This change will tend to shift the burden on Federal Taxes even further in the direction of payroll related taxes.

(4) How about efficiency savings? Can’t efficiency savings fix our problem?

There are two issues involved. If we were really efficient at fuel savings, as we were in the early 1980s, oil and other energy prices would drop dramatically. This would push oil, coal, and gas producers worldwide toward bankruptcy. Governments of oil exporting countries, such as Venezuela and Saudi Arabia, would have difficulty collecting enough tax revenue. They would likely collapse from lack of tax revenue, substantially reducing supply.

A second issue is that historically we have been adding efficiency. In fact, efficiency is what has tended to make fuel more affordable. As noted in the article, energy use could grow, as the cost of energy services fell.

Figure 8. Total Cost of Energy and Energy Services, by Roger Fouquet, from Divergences in Long Run Trends in the Prices of Energy and Energy Services. The cost of energy services combines (a) the cost of energy with (b) the impact of efficiency savings.

Some of the changes we have been making recently go in the opposite direction of efficiency. For example, the recent article, Biggest Ever Change in Oil Markets Could Send Prices Higher, discusses a new regulation requiring the use of low-sulfur fuel oil for ships. Doing this would greatly reduce the quantity of sulfur being released to the atmosphere as emissions. This is not a change toward efficiency; it is a change toward higher cost of production, which is the opposite of efficiency. Regulators plan to use part of our energy supply to eliminate the excess sulfur before the oil is sold.

As undesirable as sulfur pollution is, the problem is affordability and higher cost. Wages are not high enough for workers around the world to afford the required higher cost of food (because food production and transport use oil) to support the new regulation. So, the likely result of the regulation is to push the world toward recession. Beyond a certain affordability point, it is hard to push oil prices higher, because wages don’t rise at the same time.

(5) Could you explain further why flat energy consumption per capita is not sufficient for the world economy–this amount really has to grow?

Perhaps looking at charts of recent trends in energy consumption of a few countries can help explain what happens when overall per capita energy consumption is flat.

Joseph Tainter in The Collapse of Complex Societies explains that economies often use “complexity” to work around problems as they approach resource limits. In the particular version of complexity tried in this case, manufacturing was increasingly globalized. Workers suddenly found themselves competing for wages with workers from much lower wage countries. Wage disparity became more of a problem.

When workers are increasingly poor, they can afford to purchase fewer goods and services. This can be seen in energy consumption per capita data. Figure 9 shows energy consumption per capita for three European countries experiencing difficulties. In all three, energy consumption per capita has been falling for several years. When manufacturing was sent to Asia, workers found themselves earning less, so they were able to purchase fewer goods made with energy products. Also, European products were less competitive on the world market, with the new competition from low-cost markets.

Figure 9. Energy Consumption per Capita for three European Countries, based on BP Statistical Review of World Energy data and UN 2017 population estimates.

The countries that have been able to grow more rapidly in response to globalization (such as those in Figure 10) need to keep up their patterns of growth, or they start encountering financial problems because their prior growth was generally financed with debt. Without sufficiently rapid growth, they have difficulty repaying debt with interest.

Figure 10. Energy Consumption per Capita for five countries that recently have been growing rapidly. Based on BP Statistical Review of World Energy data and UN 2017 population estimates.

Brazil’s energy consumption per capita has recently fallen, and it is encountering severe problems. Argentina is a country with flattening energy consumption growth. China’s growth in energy consumption has slowed as well; we often read statements about its debt problems.

One of the problems that these rapidly growing countries encounter is currency fluctuations. As long as their particular country seems to be growing rapidly, the currency level of their country can remain high, relative to the US dollar or the Euro. But if obstacles are encountered, such as the low price of their major export, or slower economic growth, the currency of the country may fall relative to major currencies.

A falling currency relative to major currencies is a problem for these rapidly growing countries for three reasons. For one, imports become expensive. For another, any debt denominated in a foreign currency (such as the US dollar) becomes more difficult to repay. The reason why this is an issue is because rapidly growing countries often do not find enough credit available locally, so are forced to borrow internationally. A third problem with slowing growth and a falling currency relativity is that it becomes more difficult to attract new investment to the country. Instead, outside investors may decide to leave; they want to seek the next growth opportunity, in different, more rapidly growing country.

Turkey and Argentina both seem to be having problems with their currencies falling relative to the US dollar.

Another issue that makes flat worldwide per capita energy consumption unworkable is “diminishing returns” as resources become depleted. For example, wells for fresh water must be dug deeper, ores of metals include higher percentages of waste materials, and oil wells must be sunk in less convenient locations. These problems can be worked around, but they require increased energy consumption. All of these uses for energy products leave less for the rest of the economy. Thus, if we deduct the extra energy needed to compensate for diminishing returns, what at first looks like flat per capita energy consumption worldwide really equates to declining per capita energy consumption.

(6) Isn’t there anything that we can do to reduce carbon dioxide emissions?

The task of reducing carbon dioxide emissions is much more difficult than it appears to be, because the world economy requires energy consumption in order to operate.

The best thing I can see that an individual can do is reduce his or her consumption of meat and other animal products (fish, cheese, milk, leather). To offset, a major increase should be made in the consumption of vegetables that are filling to eat (such as potatoes, beets, carrots, beans, sweet potatoes, taro root, turnips, and corn). Some of these perhaps can be grown locally. Humans’ use of animal products adds to carbon dioxide levels, partly because of the quantity of food that needs to be grown and transported to feed the animals, and partly because of the direct emissions of some animals (including cattle, pigs, buffalo, chicken, sheep and goats).

In fact, cutting back on highly processed food of all sorts (particularly sugars, high fructose corn syrup, and oils) would seem to be worthwhile, as well. Growing, processing, and transporting the crops used in these highly processed foods all add to CO2 emissions.

Our problem is that we have grown attached to the flavors of these foods, and we have become convinced that they help us grow big and strong. While they may do this, they also set us up for problems in old age. Starchy vegetables have played a major role in the diets of long lived people. We may need to start giving them, and other less processed foods, a more prominent role again.











About Gail Tverberg

My name is Gail Tverberg. I am an actuary interested in finite world issues - oil depletion, natural gas depletion, water shortages, and climate change. Oil limits look very different from what most expect, with high prices leading to recession, and low prices leading to financial problems for oil producers and for oil exporting countries. We are really dealing with a physics problem that affects many parts of the economy at once, including wages and the financial system. I try to look at the overall problem.
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1,749 Responses to Our Energy Problem Is a Quantity Problem

  1. Sven Røgeberg says:

    Anthony Patt is Professor of Climate Policy at ETH Zurich, the author of Transforming Energy: Solving Climate Change with Technology Policy (Cambridge Univ. Press 2015), and a Coordinating Lead Author for Working Group III of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
    This is how he understands what is going on in the world:
    Do you think he would change his economic model once more if he got the chance to read OFW ?;!

    • I don’t know.

      At the Biophysical Economics Conference I was at last week, Graham Palmer from Australia gave a talk, discussing the exogenous scenarios that the IPCC has been modeling. All except the lowest one seem to be physically impossible. I don’t have a copy of his presentation, so I am not certain of precisely his arguments. Basically, I have come to a similar conclusion, simply because the economy cannot hold together well enough to extract more than a bit more fossil fuels. Without a lot of cheap fossil fuels, most of the scenarios they model are simply absurd.

      If we have only a short term future because of energy issues, discussing what we could/should/might do about climate change doesn’t make any sense to me. There really isn’t much of anything we can do, certainly from a fuel point of view.

      Also at the conference, Al Bates talked about CO2 mitigation efforts that might be made. (His view was that it was too late to make other changes.) The one change he seemed to think might make a difference is replanting forests, to the extent possible. That would probably be a good idea, regardless of climate change. But replanting forests works in the opposite direction of “using more renewables.”

  2. Discussion from recent few days at Surplus presents evidence that there is indeed actively pursued “plan B” at CBs level, sort of preparatory activity for the event – next round/s of GFC, moment of rare opportunity which could be utilized to phase in negative interest rates, selective-targeted debt jubilees, driving most of the cash out of circulation as pushing overall stricter authoritarian measures of gov oversight through approved e-currencies instead..

    Obviously, fast collapsniks would laugh it off, as the JITs and other debris would immediately cancel any of that, however for the slowmo staircasers this is good read..

  3. Harry Gibbs says:

    “Recently, Fasanara Capital, a London-based asset management fund, predicted a full-on crash ahead, citing increasing frequency of value-at-risk shocks — or swift market corrections — as an indication of fragility for global markets… The fund was not alone in pointing out that today’s stock market is the most overvalued on record — more so than in 1929, 2000 and 2007.”


  4. Baby Doomer says:

    In case you were wondering, one-third (95 out of 289) of all American Nobel Prizes in the Sciences have been earned by Immigrants to the United States.

    -Neil deGrasse Tyson

  5. Fast Eddy says:

    Tesla: reality begins to collide with Elon Musk’s vision

    Is Elon Musk’s recent announcement of job cuts a sign of belated realism or that financial problems are coming due?


    Please let this be the beginning of the end of Tesla….

    I am brewing a massive pot of strong Schadenfreude….

    • It’s about time, he can’t compete on volume and mas production since traditional automanufs with several brands and many production plants across the globe are entering the segment (Nissan-Renault, Hyundai, VW).. And he can’t compete on the luxury tail of the market as well anymore, since beautifully crafted Jag, BMW, Benz, Porsche(VW) and others are moving there as well..

    • xabier says:

      It’s amusing that Elon the Saviour is talking about ‘sabotage’.

      Like the Soviets when a Plan (unrealistic to start with) wasn’t working out……

  6. Baby Doomer says:

    Ann Coulter calls children separated from families at border “child actors” and begs Trump: “Don’t fall for the actor children”


    This has got to be a scam to distract everyone away from FW issues..Nobody is this dumb..Maybe we are nearing the end and this is our big finish!

    • Greg Machala says:

      You know the book 1984 (which was published in 1949 and was required reading when I was in school) is becoming increasingly prophetic. Sometimes I wonder if George Orwell was part of the Deep State. How else could a person have had such gifted insight into the future. Accurate information is so hard to come by today that it is difficult (if not impossible) to tell factual news from fiction. The best thing a person can do is read as broadly as one can. Even then it is difficult to put the real story together.

  7. Third World person says:

    Italy to compile ‘register’ of Roma people: Matteo Salvini

    Italian authorities are to carry out a census of Roma people with a view to deporting those without papers, according to new Interior Minister Matteo Salvini.
    Salvini, head of the anti-immigration League party that is the junior party in Italy’s governing coalition, plans to order “a survey of Roma in Italy to find out who, how, how many”, he told a northern Italian TV station on Monday, saying the information would be collected in a “register”.

    “Irregular [undocumented] foreigners will be deported via agreements with other countries, but Italian Roma unfortunately you have to keep at home,” he was quoted as saying.

    Salvini has a long history of targeting Italy’s Roma population, which numbers an estimated 130,000-170,000, around half of whom are believed to be Italian citizens.

    The League has already proposed creating exceptional laws for Roma people that would make it easier for authorities to remove children from their families if they were found not to be attending school, while Salvini has called for Roma camps to be “bulldozed” and accused Romani of preferring crime to work.

    Many Roma activists complain of deep-rooted discrimination in Italy, saying that it is difficult for them to find permanent housing or employment and that they are the frequent victims of hate crimes. One 2015 survey found that Italians have a more negative view of Roma than any of their European neighbours, despite the relatively small Roma population here. And in 2014, the European Commission warned Italy that squalid government-run camps “seriously limit fundamental rights”.
    The interior minister does not seem to be aware that in Italy, the law does not allow a census based on ethnicity,” responded Carlo Stastolla, president of Associazione 21 Iuglio, a group that campaigns for the rights of Roma and Sinti people in Italy.

    feeling sad for roma people they are really hated by European

  8. Baby Doomer says:

    Musk and Tesla are building Model 3’s in a tent now.. What a joke!


  9. Baby Doomer says:

    Weak pay growth puzzles Fed chief, just like everyone else


    • Dan says:

      I find it ironic that those that promote globalization cannot comprehend the side effects.

    • Greg Machala says:

      Really? Stagnant wages puzzle the Fed Chief? Hint, cheap offshore labor.

    • “Please have corp call me to discuss” aka “I want my ransom pocket change/new car asap or I’ll refer the case to my lawyers and TSLA ends up paying 5x that much money and 30x much in bad PR..”

  10. Kurt says:

    New York is a mess.

    Link here:

    Posted by Harry “I don’t have an original thought but I will post everything from zerohedge and yahoo” Gibbs.

    • Kurt says:

      Wall Street is a mess.

      Link here:

      Posted by Harry “I don’t have an original thought but I will post everything from zerohedge and yahoo” Gibbs.

      • Kurt says:

        Peanut butter is a mess.

        Link here:

        Posted by Harry “I don’t have an original thought but I will post everything from zerohedge and yahoo” Gibbs.

        • Kurt says:

          Jelly is a mess.

          Link here:

          Posted by Harry “I don’t have an original thought but I will post everything from zerohedge and yahoo” Gibbs.

          • Kurt says:

            Amazingly, peanut butter and jelly is a mess.

            Link here:

            Posted by Harry “I don’t have an original thought but I will post everything from zerohedge and yahoo” Gibbs.

        • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

          peanut butter!

          one of the world’s very great foods…

          roasted peanuts and salt… a brilliant recipe…

          a one pound jar is about 3,000 calories…

          that’s a lot of calories for about 3 USD…

          • Fast Eddy says:

            How many jars in a 20ft container….

            • Looking into pantry, retail pack @200g well bellow 2EUR, not sure on volume roughly ><0.3L ? In bulk with different packaging should be even more compact – calories dense stuff.. However, there is serious choke off hazard when (over)eating (as usual) these little nuts.

          • not salted and not hard roasted variety even better!
            not only for various home made cakes but direct consumption too..

    • jupiviv says:

      This is a bit unfair. What would Amber say?

      • Harry Gibbs says:

        To explain myself a little: I have made a daily discipline of trawling through the mainstream news for stories that relate to the issues Gail writes about for a few years now. Because the MSM does not itself address, and in fact rarely even acknowledges, these issues, we can only follow the story by piecing it together in patchwork quilt fashion.

        I never actually post ZeroHedge stories because, although there are some great articles on there, the site is prone to hyperbole and their quality control is poor.

        The information I look at each day far exceeds my conscious mind’s ability to process it, so it becomes more an exercise in intuition than intellect. I feel like a spider, sensing movement of varying type and intensity across my web, trying to assess the level of threat in sub-cognitive fashion. It has been a fascinating journey. And of course some of the information does stick, so I flatter myself that I enjoy a deeper and more global perspective on current affairs than most.

        Also, although I try hard to keep an open mind, I have reached the point after many years in forums such as this, where my views on the debates that commonly occur here – fast vs. slow collapse; is you-know-what a hoax?; MMT vs. the laws of physics etc. etc. – are fairly well developed and I am too jaded to argue my case. So, instead I just mark time, keeping an eye on the potential trouble-spots and sharing stories that seem particularly salient.

        The last thing I want is a multitude of silent FiniteWorlders tutting and rolling their eyes every time I post a sequence of stories, so if there are others out there in addition to Kurt who feel that my posting is excessive and tiresome then please do speak up. I am very happy to dial it down.

  11. Kurt says:

    Venezuela is a mess.

    Link here:

    Posted by Harry “I don’t have an original thought but I will post everything from zerohedge and yahoo” Gibbs.

    • Kurt says:

      Argentina is a mess.

      Link here:

      Posted by Harry “I don’t have an original thought but I will post everything from zerohedge and yahoo” Gibbs.

      • Kurt says:

        Shale oil is a mess.

        Link here:

        Posted by Harry “I don’t have an original thought but I will post everything from zerohedge and yahoo” Gibbs.

        • Kurt says:

          China is a mess.

          Link here:

          Posted by Harry “I don’t have an original thought but I will post everything from zerohedge and yahoo” Gibbs.

          • Kurt says:

            Antarctica is a mess.

            Link here:

            Posted by Harry “I don’t have an original thought but I will post everything from zerohedge and yahoo” Gibbs.

            • Kurt says:

              Ohio is a mess.

              Link here:

              Posted by Harry “I don’t have an original thought but I will post everything from zerohedge and yahoo” Gibbs.

            • But we are not a climate change site. Please take your climate change articles elsewhere.

          • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:


            does Kurt realize the blatant irony of these many posts that lack any “original thought”?

            if it was Amber Heard, I would suspect she would miss the irony…

            but Kurt knows the secret handshake AND all of the secret plans with the accompanying codes…

            Kurt… proceed to plan 3434JHK…

            this is not a test!

            signed, special agent 100mbtzyears…

  12. Baby Doomer says:

    What we are about to lay out to you is our case for $100/bbl oil in the next 2 years.

    When adjusting for these “vapor barrels” we believe that OPEC and Russia have collectively ~0.6MM Bbl/d of real production that is capable of returning to the market; this represents a meagre 4 months of demand growth. Upon the return of this production OPEC’s spare capacity will largely be depleted. The last time OPEC spare capacity as a percentage of global demand fell to such a low level corresponded with oil spiking to $147/bbl.

    Why will OPEC’s spare capacity at that point be so low? During the oil collapse between 2014-2017 many countries within OPEC were quite literally staring at their imminent collapse. Oil revenues to OPEC are critical given how much of their collective state revenues are tied to it (Saudi Arabian state revenues are approximately 90% oil weighted). As oil revenues imploded so too did many OPEC countries’ ability to ensure social stability as there is an unwritten social contract between many of the ruling powers and their people based upon heavy subsidizations.

    During this period of state revenue collapse, as many countries were forced to draw down their foreign exchange reserves to prop up social spending, the easiest thing to cut investment on was long-lead production (especially when oil was trading in the $30’s and $40’s!). As the oil price weakness was protracted and the average cycle time (the time it takes from spending money on an oil project to production) is 4-6 years, the collapse in OPEC spending is about to lead to a 3+ year period of no major projects coming online within OPEC.

    The result is an extended period of limited spare capacity coupled with the inability to meaningfully grow oil production. This graph validates estimates that OPEC can only grow production by ~ 100,000Bbl/d per year from now until 2023 which is equivalent to a meagre 5% of annual demand growth. The evolution of OPEC from “carrying the hammer” in the oil market to soon becoming a passive observer is significant.

    We believe that oil inventories will reach their lowest level in history by October 2020. The last time inventories were this low was in February 2003 when oil demand was 80MM Bbl/d. This time oil demand will be ~102MM Bbl/d. As a result days of cover compared to the 10 year average of 31 will fall to 22 days by December 2020. There is a very strong inverse relationship between oil inventories and the price of oil and using historical regression such an inventory level would imply an oil price well in excess of $150/bbl. In our forecasting we have purposefully been overly conservative in every assumption:


  13. Fast Eddy says:

    Chasing Yield during ZIRP & NIRP Evidently Starved Human Brains of Oxygen. Now the Price Is Due
    by Wolf Richter • Jun 18, 2018 • 0 Comments
    See Argentina’s 100-year dollar-bond and emerging-market “turmoil” as the Hot Money flees.
    Let’s be clear: It’s not just Argentina. But Argentina is the most elegant example. The exodus of the hot money from emerging markets where cheap dollar-debts were used to fund pet projects and jack up leverage is – once again – in full swing. Cheap dollar-debt in emerging markets is an old sin that, like all old sins, is repeated endlessly. The outcome is always trouble. But during the act, it sure is a lot of fun for everyone.

    The exodus of the hot money is even gripping the non-basket-case emerging economies of Asia where it’s causing the worst indigestion since 2008. Bloomberg:

    Overseas funds are pulling out of six major Asian emerging equity markets at a pace unseen since the global financial crisis of 2008 – withdrawing $19 billion from India, Indonesia, the Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan, and Thailand so far this year.

    While emerging markets shone in the first quarter, suggesting resilience to Federal Reserve tightening, that image has shattered over the past two months. With American money market funds now offering yields around 2% – where 10-year Treasuries were just last September – and prospects for more Fed hikes, the bar for heading into riskier assets has been raised.

    “It’s not a great set-up for emerging markets,” James Sullivan, head of Asia ex-Japan equities research at JPMorgan Chase, told Bloomberg. “We’ve still only priced in about two thirds of the US rate increases we expect to see over the next 12 months. So the Fed is continuing to get more hawkish, but the market still hasn’t caught up.”

    Emerging markets have responded to this new environment and a newly hawkish Fed with all kinds of gyrations, including raising rates in order to prop up their currencies. For example, the central banks of Argentina and Turkey hiked key rates to 40% and 17.75% respectively.


  14. Fast Eddy says:

    Enron Musk is losing his mind


    No doubt this will be the excuse for missing production targets… again

    • Baby Doomer says:

      When your “lithium” batteries are mostly made of nickel that is mined out of a Russian city that is one of largest polluters on the face of the planet and release shitloads of toxic waste into their river, and tons of sulfur dioxide, which causes significant amounts of lung cancer, kills wildlife, and is so intensely polluting that it pollutes Norway. It also causes cardiovascular disease, nervous system degredation, and bone and muscular disorders.

      While you also add more and more cars to the road, filled with people feeling like they can drive however much they want, clogging up traffic and putting more stress on the traditional oil cars, while also encouraging people to sell their old cars to buy new Tesla cars to save the environment when in reality the manufacturing process of a Tesla is the equivalent of burning 700 gallons of gas in carbon emmisions, while also calling the most energy and carbon efficient form of transit “dirty, inefficient, and full of poor people” and deciding to replace it for a system worse for the environment, all while you shoot your unprofitable electric cars on oil based kerosene rockets.

      All in order to save the world , gais

    • Is that serious or some poker face tactics to get a deal, on the other hand the timing seems good (perhaps last call) as the Chines hoped they will be left alone to conquer the world in their slow baby steps, decade after decade, nobody noticing..

      And as we know from history when you unexpectedly press Asian societies like this (not according to their long term goal/plan) they usually choose the wrong maneuver and loose it suddenly.

      Well, after all, it’s their game, the opted willingly (consent) for this hockey stick nonsense in the first place, and did not came out with own plan and effort for real global alliance faction at the right time, during late 2000s/early2010s. Good riddance..

  15. Baby Doomer says:

    Paul Tudor Jones: “The Next Recession Will Be Frightening”


  16. Fast Eddy says:

    Excellent strategic use of fire

    Israeli authorities have attributed a recent spate of fires ravaging farmlands to the low-tech kites and “arson balloons” which have resulted in over 400 fires burning more than 6,000 acres, according to a spokesman for Israel’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.

    During the ‘Great March of Return’ protests, which started along the Israeli-Gaza border fence in late March, explosive and incendiary devices have been used to target farmlands in southern Israel. Large kites or collections of balloons will typically be released while carrying burning items attached by a long cord.

    They’ve also been dubbed ‘Molotov cocktail kites’ and have become the latest improvised means of getting around Israel’s high-tech air defense systems.


  17. Fast Eddy says:

    In the first week of February, in the trading session just before the February 5 VIXtermination, the market tumbled as a result of a January average hourly earnings number that surged (even though as we explained at the time, the market had wildly misinterpreted the print), prompting speculation that the Fed was dangerously behind the curve and would need to accelerate its tightening, potentially hiking rates more than just 4 times in 2018, leading to an accelerating liquidation of risk assets which eventually culminated in the record VIX spike.



  18. Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

    Merkel keeps her power for at least two more weeks:


    the end of her political career seems imminent…

    this will shake the EU…

    and perhaps lead to disunion…

  19. Yoshua says:

    The Goddess Isis, Diana, Colombia, Light Bringer, Morning Star, Lucifer, Rebel against the hated God of Laws of Physics.

    Freedom! Take a bite. You’re gonna love it!


    • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

      MJ’s career hasn’t been going so good lately…

      same with Prince’s career…

      are they touring?

      how much $ are tickets?

    • JT Roberts says:

      Interesting comment Yoshua I’m sure your also aware of the theophoric meaning of your name.

    • Adam says:

      How will the Jackos fare post-BAU?

      • Fast Eddy says:

        Like brother Michael

        • Greg Machala says:

          One unfortunate side effect of cheap energy is that it has created more free time for humans to do devious things. More free time to focus on hedonistic ventures. More free time to question our sexuality. All frivolous folly. It seems like with every good things in life there is a bad side that goes along with it. Sad.

  20. Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

    Russia continues its plan to become independent of the rest of the world:


    Putin may not be a genius, but he gets the big picture…

    he wants Russia to be financially independent…

    and able to produce everything it needs domestically…

    will it work?

    it depends greatly on who succeeds Putin by the mid 2020s…

  21. Greg Machala says:

    It is interesting to note that the US recently called upon the Saudis to increase oil production by one million barrels per day. Does this mean the US shale oil “boom” is waning? As far as I know, as far as I can remember, there has never been a call by any US administration to increase electricity production. It is always a call to produce more fossil fuels. The additional demand of Saudi oil leads me to believe that the US has reached the maximum rate at which we can extract crude oil – hence the call on the Saudis to fill the gap. We can’t count on more costly oil to fill the gap either; higher prices will destroy economic growth. If electricity (solar and wind) would solve our energy problems there would be a call to increase electric production rather than increase oil production. When fossil fuel energies wane – all of Elon’s cars and all of Elon’s batteries won’t put Humpty back together again.

    • Harry Gibbs says:

      Plus there is the issue with US tight oil being too light and sweet. There is a technical limit to the US refining system’s ability to process it.

      • Greg Machala says:

        I agree. The world can’t run on light tight oil alone. We must have the full spectrum of fossil fuels (coal, conventional oil, natural gas) to make the system work. light tight oil adds to our existing supplies it doesn’t really replace anything. We seem to just keep adding to our net energy consumption never really replacing anything. Yes somehow, solar and wind will replace it all LOL!

  22. Sungr says:

    Why humans are an inferior species.

    Compare human traits to those of other mammals such as dogs-

    Humans have-

    1.Poor eyesight
    2. Poor hearing
    3. Poor sense of smell
    4. Slow on the run
    5. Poorly designed feet ie injuries
    6. Throat and vital organs upright & exposed to attack
    7. Slow running
    8. Poor overall muscle strength
    9, No natural defensive weapons ie claws
    10. Teeth & fingernails not very useful for defense
    11. Body without fur or other insulation
    12. Vulnerable skin that burns, tears, abrades easily & goes bald
    13. No tail ie for swimming, leaping from tree to tree, etc
    14. Unable to climb trees for defense in any serious way
    15. Body that cannot blend into natural world settings
    16. Natural propensity to wage constant warfare on other humans
    18. Natural propensity to hoard food, goods, weapons etc at any cost ie human habitat
    19. Advanced brains that tend to create many more problems than they solve.

    +probably lots more

    +Opposable thumbs are a plus- except making and constructing weapons is a primary usage

    • Greg Machala says:

      Ahh but we excel resource consumption to lay waste to just about every other mega fauna on this planet. We also have the nuclear capacity to wipe out just about everything on this planet. We are not inferior, we are dangerous.

    • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

      humans are the most interesting and fascinating component of the entire known universe…

      no contest…

      a prime example is OFW…


    • MG says:

      The rising use of the external energy allowed for the survival of the most degenerated species – the humans.

  23. SomeoneInAsia says:

    It looks like Yemen stands to witness the most terrible genocide carried out so far this century…


    • This is part of the problem.


      They also have water and population problems.

      • SomeoneInAsia says:

        Is the oil depletion problem connected in some way to the years-long Saudi blockade against the Yemenis? Just wondering.

        • I know that most wars are resource wars, in one way or another. I know that Saudi Arabia and Yemen are right next to each other, and that both Saudi Arabia and Yemen have water problems in addition to oil problems. The population of the two countries is surprisingly similar: Saudi Arabia has a population of 33.6 million in 2018 according to the UN medium estimate; Yemen has a population of 28.9 million in 2018, according to the same data source. In 1950, the population of Saudi Arabia was 3.1 million and the population of Yemen was 4.4 million, so they have both grown by ridiculous amounts since oil began to be pumped in the area, but Saudi Arabia’s has grown by a factor of about 11, and Yemen’s has “only” grown by a factor of 6 or 7. The earlier population is closer to what might be sustainable without fossil fuel exports.

          Clearly, neither country can sustain its current population without very substantial energy supplies, and high taxes related to the export of these energy supplies. I don’t know the details of the years-long blockade, except that it seems to have started in 2015, when the taxes that Saudi Arabia could obtain on its oil exports fell to unacceptably low levels. By that time, Yemen’s oil exports were pretty much gone, because of its own consumption of energy products. I don’t know what Saudi Arabia’s motives might be, other than perhaps to have a different area to spread its population into Yemen. Yemen does have some agriculture. At one point, it grew coffee for export.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      The Saudi coalition which includes Emirati forces and foreign mercenaries as well as remnants from the previous regime (which the Western media mendaciously refer to as “government forces”) is fully backed by the US, Britain and France. This coalition says that by taking Hodeida it will hasten the defeat of Houthi rebels. But to use the cutting off of food and other vital aid to civilian populations as a weapon is a blatant war crime. It is absolutely inexcusable.

      Churchill would be pleased!

  24. Never ever buy 2nd hand EV and or consider the following with the brand new purchase first.
    Well this has been known for ages by deep insiders, but nowadays there is available nice easy going introduction video about it.

    Basically, people would be forced to fast charge the car even during deep discharges, i.e. when really low on energy tank, e.g. charge up from ~25% tank/battery or less. But this rapidly rises the temperature and tends to irreversibly degrade the batt chemistry, hence negatively affecting cycle life – longevity of the pack. The manufs usually try to compensate this by liquid or at least air cooling loop but that’s not enough.

    You won’t ever heard about it from most of the sales people, although it might be acknowledged officially in some tiny print disclaimers..

    Here is a guy doing a compromise thing, driving slowly, cycling through window of ~50-85% fast charges only, he depicts the exact temp rises/fall during fast charges, comparing to previous trip where he discharged it hard with notable temp differences..


    Summary=> only ~1/3rd of your manuf stated capacity is usable in fast charging!

    • The ~same obviously does apply for battery storage schemes be it on industrial or personal scale..

    • Grant says:

      It makes no sense to own an EV unless, as in the case of Teslas for example, you want strangers to know everything about your life.

      At some point in the near future jurisdictions pushing electric everything will realise that they have reached a point of no easy return from renewables so will need storage and demand management urgently. But if, as seems likely, they are failing to persuade their voters, they will be forced to introduce some sort of centrally managed system as part of the generation and storage development and for implementing demand management that suits their messed up situation. Cue centralised charging/storage areas and cities with 100% rent as required fully autonomous transport devices.

      Such an endeavour would be helped if purchasing power for personal transport devices was greatly depressed leaving people with no options and little perceived benefit from objecting to the “transport as a service” proposals.

      • As pointed above, demand management curbing ~70% of nominal specification for given tool (vehicle application) is very detrimental to the effort to present personal EVs as supposedly 1:1 replacement to legacy technology. However, there is a niche or fraction of the users where this is understood and the other benefits compensate for it.

        More to your point I agree there is a visible push to corner consumers/people into service yoke in every dimension (no ownership) as it seems to be viable ~BAU extension strategy..

        • Grant says:

          At some point you re-pitch the message and point out to people direct replacement of their currently perceived ICE selections is entirely financially illogical.

          I have heard suggestions that in cities Uber and similar services appeal much more to younger generations than the hassle of owning a car they would hardly ever use. Reinforce that “sensible choice” but with state controls to make it “safer” and “cheaper”, using, for example, empty shopping malls as refresh and recharge centres for autonomous battery pods with seats, and people used to indoctrination through the medium of education would likely accept it as the wonderful logical new normal without much questioning.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            Given that Uber violates laws in every jurisdiction where it operates… one cannot help but wonder if The Higher Authorities have not issued an edict putting these ride share companies above the law… for the greater good …. i.e. to provide affordable transportation for those who are unable to afford a car…

            Likewise Tesla – this company by any measure of solvency — should NOT exist. Yet not only does it exist it has a market cap that rivals massive auto manufacturers who actually make money. Someone has decided Tesla is necessary – that would be the Ministry of Hopium (also responsible for funding solar and wind)

            • xabier says:


              Like all the Turkish shops, cafes, restaurants and hair salons that, suddenly, appeared in this town: are Turks particularly good at business?

              Or is it the Turkish mafia money-laundring that makes them ‘viable’?


            • Christiana says:

              In my town it is the same. I suspect in Arab shops, they never pay minimum wage. It is always a cousin just helping out some hours. It is not mafia, just poverty and mutual dependance.

  25. Christiana says:

    German newspapers still say: Worlwide economic growth is stable and will be going on much longer! DAX stays steady!

    • Harry Gibbs says:

      I’m all for that. We need lots of positive propaganda to keep investors investing and consumers consuming.

  26. Harry Gibbs says:

    “The bull market in highly leveraged US companies could be coming to an end. For most of the decade since the financial crisis, shares in companies with weak balance sheets performed much better than the stocks of their stronger peers, according to Goldman Sachs strategists. But that trend has started to change recently…”


  27. Harry Gibbs says:

    “As the Trump administration imposes tariffs on allies and rivals alike, provoking broad retaliation, global commerce is suffering disruption, flashing signs of strains that could hamper economic growth. The latest escalation came on Friday, when President Trump announced fresh tariffs on $50 billion in Chinese goods, prompting swift retribution from Beijing.

    “As the conflict broadens, shipments are slowing at ports and airfreight terminals around the world. Prices for crucial raw materials are rising. At factories from Germany to Mexico, orders are being cut and investments delayed. American farmers are losing sales as trading partners hit back with duties of their own…”


  28. Harry Gibbs says:

    “A falling tide lowers all boats, it seems. Overseas funds are pulling out of six major Asian emerging equity markets at a pace unseen since the global financial crisis of 2008 — withdrawing $19 billion from India, Indonesia, the Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand so far this year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.”


  29. Harry Gibbs says:

    “The British Chambers of Commerce has cut its UK growth forecast for 2018, warning the economy faces its weakest year since the financial crisis.”


  30. MG says:

    What made the humans the dominant species on the Earth?

    I would say their versatile hands suited for tools that can spark the fire, create shelter for themselves and the species that thus became domesticated.

    If you had paws, you are an animal. But when you attach human hands to an animal body, this creature is no longer considered an animal, but a monster, some deviation from the human species, which gives such creature power.

    So, besides the energy use:


    it is this special creative tool called “the human hand” that started to shape the environment in favour of the humans.

    That way the origin of humans was surely before the use of fire. The first humans simply started to reshape their enviroment to better suit their needs. Of course, this reshaping of the environment was of small extent, until tools and additional energy of biomass and other species started to ramp up the human population.

    That is why the humans consider themselves to be created in God’s image: they create their world, their world is a product of their activity.

    As the humans addicted more and more to the use of external energy, they lost their animal appearance (hair) and became totally dependent on some sort of external energy that became their God, on which they depend.

    • bacteria have been here for 3 bn years, and outnumber us by quadrillions to one

      humans have been here for 1 mn years

      without bacteria we would be dead in a week

      without humans, bactiria wouldn’t notice we’d gone

      which would you say is the dominant species

      • MG says:

        The bacteria can not create their environment. They are too small and isolated as compared to other living organisms. Humans can use fire or some deadly stuff to bacteria and thus create bacteria-free environment. Bacteria can not do that.

        • MG says:

          The bacteria created fossil fuels, but the humans consume them to create their own world. Surely, the humans are at the top, as there is no other creature that can exhaust in the largest scale what was and is accumulated by other species.

        • just what do you think YOU are?

          bacteria keep you as a living environment

          if you are invaded by bad guys—bacteria fight to drive them out

          or not–in which case youre dead

          • MG says:

            “bacteria keep you as a living environment” – well, every type of bacteria happen to live in the suitable environments, not just everywhere, so they do not keep you, but some of they positively contribute to our lives, like the right combination of gases in the air we breath. it is not just that they create something, some types of them are part of us. other types of them are harmful to us. and that is different.

          • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

            “just what do you think YOU are?”



            “Humans are colonized by many microorganisms; the traditional estimate is that the average human body is inhabited by ten times as many non-human cells as human cells, but more recent estimates have lowered that ratio to 3:1 or even to approximately the same number.”

            the human microbiome has more non-human cells than your “body”…

            • MG says:

              “Humans are colonized”, i.e. the corresponding bacteria live in their corresponding environments. It does not mean that the bacteria control humans, as when the human body dies, the bacteria die, too. They do not move to other human bodies.

            • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

              yes, true…

              but the human microbiome is essential to human life…

              for example, our “gut” bacteria must be composed of “good” bacteria…

              (so then eat more yogurt…)

              otherwise, the digestive system will be overwhelmed with “bad” bacteria…

              three cheers for “good” bacteria!

              BAU… Bacteria As Usual…

            • NikoB says:

              Actually they do control us to a very large degree as they produce hormones and neurotransmitters that effect our status as it were. We are effectively very large bags of flesh that seek out energy and nutrients to keep our bacterial overlords alive. Their long game is better than ours.

            • MG says:

              “Bacterial overlords”? The problem is that without bacteria, we can not be as we are, so naming it overlords means, that we could live without them. But we can not, which means they are a natural part of us, helping us, not destroying us. They are not parasites, but the organisms that enable our lives.

  31. Baby Doomer says:

    ‘Peak Oil’ and the German Government

    Military Study Warns of a Potentially Drastic Oil Crisis

    The team of authors, led by Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Will, uses sometimes-dramatic language to depict the consequences of an irreversible depletion of raw materials. It warns of shifts in the global balance of power, of the formation of new relationships based on interdependency, of a decline in importance of the western industrial nations, of the “total collapse of the markets” and of serious political and economic crises.

    The study, whose authenticity was confirmed to SPIEGEL ONLINE by sources in government circles, was not meant for publication.



    • Greg Machala says:

      I agree with the analysis, it is getting pretty obvious now. What humans lack in physical strength we make up for with consumption of massive amounts of raw materials and resources. These are of course finite.

  32. Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

    WTI oil down another 2% tonight to $63.77…

    down 2.7% on Friday…

    why would OPEC + Russia talk about increasing future production?

    they’re only causing the price of their exports to go lower…


    • Fast Eddy says:

      Cuz it’s all a charade… the price of oil is managed… just like gold… and the stock and bond markets

      • jupiviv says:

        If oil price were managed it wouldn’t ever drop below a certain point. Why would “they” allow energy investment & production to falter, thus jeopardising the solvency/stability of oil producing nations?

        • Fast Eddy says:

          Because if the price is kept too high … it threatens to collapse BAU because that destroys growth… so they must force the price down to help BAU stagger on …

          But they cannot keep it too low for too long … because then producers stop producing…

          There is also the need to tease investors with higher prices from time to time … to ensure that they jump on the shale bandwagon providing funding to keep that charade going

          • The world is evidently on the move to some reshuffle threshold, notice several previously unheard of developments lately.. For example, the impossible happened as Russians/Putin went buddy buddy with the Gulfies in order to at least somewhat wrestle the pricing power of oil/natgas out of the global financial super structure, well it was in time of a glut so it was “easy” – nevertheless unique. In another news, Spain (NATO) country seeks extradition of their (most important) regional PM on the accounts of committing act of treason from other member countries where he is hiding, i.e. ongoing hard autonomy/separatist movement. UK is probably existing at least some of the EU-single market structures. China and EU appear for the moment playing in response the US invoked trade sanction game hard, which kind of surprised me, although they could capitulate in near time further negotiating rounds. Plus much more other developments ongoing..

          • jupiviv says:

            So things that would naturally happen anyway need to be “managed” by “them”, is that it?

  33. Baby Doomer says:

    Ex-CIA head compares US immigration policy to Nazi Germany


    Disgusting that we’ve fallen so far that comparison to Nazi Germany is even somewhat reasonable..

    • Baby Doomer says:

      Once they set one precedent that people get used to they will move on to the next. Next they will start taking away children from natural citizens..

      And first they came for..

      • Separation of children from parents is not that different from forcing rodents to frequently adapt to a new set of peers by repeatedly moving them from one cage with one set of rodent peers, to a different cage with a new set of rodent peers. This technique is used by psychologists to artificially stress rodents.

        Rodents stressed in this way do poorly in the future. I forget the particular issues involved. Something like being overly fearful and not adapting well in the future. In fact, this problem seems to be transferred somewhat to future generations throug epigenetic Inheritance.

        It seems like this would affect children taken from their parents. It might also affect workers laid off from their jobs repeatedly.

        • Grant says:

          Repeated unchosen job changes seems to have become the normal expectation, especially in the gig economy. It does seem to work well for those at the top of the pyramid who can often move on, financially secure, before they have to face the consequences of their actions.

          Some children from some broken families (no matter the reason for breaking) also suffer as they mature.

          Ants, creatures that seem to have remained at the same level of development for a very long time, will likely still be around long after humans have gone. That despite their apparently strong colony based social ties but dislike of other colonies of the species as well as other species of ant.

          So what do we have the? Millions of years of social refinement opportunity (and loads of clever industrious work) yet short lives and persistent inter-colony conflict.

          Yet still they will one day inherit the planet through persistence.

  34. Baby Doomer says:

    Government ‘could collapse’ over Brexit deal


  35. Kurt says:

    I’ve said for quite some time that it will be India. It’s pretty obvious. Huge population. Massive energy needs. Poor infrastructure. No real valid export product. Say goodnight!!!

    • Duncan Idaho says:

      I’m with you, but it may possibly be Pakistan first—

    • Ed says:

      Kurt, just as China makes stuff India programs. It has value. Does it have enough value? I do not know.

      • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

        it does not have enough value…

        so their FF imports soon will be declining…

        I assume that will put downward pressure on their food production…

        their water supply is also becoming a major problem…

        all in all, India is on the Creeping Collapse shortlist, but they do have plenty of competition elsewhere in Asia as well as in the Middle East and Africa and South America… I could have just shortened that to “almost everywhere in the world”…

        • Fast Eddy says:

          Put 7.8 billion hungry cats in a very large sack … with one fish….

          That would be a good indication of what things look like when BAU checks out

    • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

      “LCW, a Moscow, Idaho clean energy company with early support from PNNL through DOE’s Office of Nuclear Energy, developed an acrylic fiber which attracts and holds on to dissolved uranium naturally present in ocean water.”

      I think this means that the funding is from the US government Dept Of Energy…

      so, it’s the typical waste of tax dollars…

      but I’m sure the scientists involved are quite enthusiastic…

      the pay and benefits must be very good…

  36. JT Roberts says:

    Just a comment on electricity vs liquid fuels. The hard truth is liquid fuels preceded electric distribution particularly in rural areas. The electric infrastructure is a product of liquid fuel. So for anyone to believe that electric transport can replace liquid fueled transport is completely ignorant of the way things work.

    Once the trucks stop running it’s over for all other distributed energy systems. So technology and complexity are still the product of abundant cheap energy not a producer of abundant cheap energy.

    • Baby Doomer says:

      Yes JT..And why the hell is FW the only in game in town that gets this?

    • I agree completely!

    • Grant says:

      In most countries in the fully developed world the delivery of liquid or gaseous fuels is, one way or another, reliant on the availability of electricity.

      To regret to manual order processing, 45gallon drums and hand pumps might not be impossible given time to adapt and create the barrels and pumps but such time might not be available should electricity supplies fail in a way that turns out to be catastrophic and irreparable in the short term.

      • Grant says:

        Regress not regret …

      • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

        “In most countries in the fully developed world the delivery of liquid or gaseous fuels is, one way or another, reliant on the availability of electricity.”

        and the production of electricity is reliant on FF…

        the modern economy is a completely networked system…

        all resource production relies on FF, and the FF industry relies on some of that production such as iron ore for steel piping…

        FF is the one ring that rules them all…

    • Baby Doomer says:

      Coal cannot work without crude, crude cannot work without coal, natural gas cannot work without both oil and coal, Shale oil cannot work without any of those, and so on…etc.

    • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

      “The electric infrastructure is a product of liquid fuel.”


      and there is definitely enough remaining FF to electrify the entire world…

      but what the the electric groupies don’t see is that this could be done only once, and only for a short time before there is no longer enough FF to repair/maintain the electric infrastructure…

      regardless of such lofty ideas, Creeping Collapse will take down IC before an Electric World can be built up…

    • Greg Machala says:

      That sums it up nicely JT. The truth is so simple. Contrast that to the years of schooling and mountain of books to create the myth of economics .

  37. Baby Doomer says:

    Fox News can’t spell “Immigration” ..


    • Aubrey Enoch says:

      With double “m” means when Europeans came here with guns and kicked ass on the Native American who only had bows and arrows. With one “m” means Spanish speaking Native Americans trying to migrate to survive by crossing a line that the European illegal immigrants drew on the map. Oh sorry. Forgot that European immigrants are not illegal since might makes right. If Fox news says one “m” then one “m” is correct.

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