Ramping up wind turbines, solar panels and electric vehicles can’t solve our energy problem

Many people believe that installing more wind turbines and solar panels and manufacturing more electric vehicles can solve our energy problem, but I don’t agree with them. These devices, plus the batteries, charging stations, transmission lines and many other structures necessary to make them work represent a high level of complexity.

A relatively low level of complexity, such as the complexity embodied in a new hydroelectric dam, can sometimes be used to solve energy problems, but we cannot expect ever-higher levels of complexity to always be achievable.

According to the anthropologist Joseph Tainter, in his well-known book, The Collapse of Complex Societies, there are diminishing returns to added complexity. In other words, the most beneficial innovations tend to be found first. Later innovations tend to be less helpful. Eventually the energy cost of added complexity becomes too high, relative to the benefit provided.

In this post, I will discuss complexity further. I will also present evidence that the world economy may already have hit complexity limits. Furthermore, the popular measure, “Energy Return on Energy Investment” (EROEI) pertains to direct use of energy, rather than energy embodied in added complexity. As a result, EROEI indications tend to suggest that innovations such as wind turbines, solar panels and EVs are more helpful than they really are. Other measures similar to EROEI make a similar mistake.

[1] In this video with Nate Hagens, Joseph Tainter explains how energy and complexity tend to grow simultaneously, in what Tainter calls the Energy-Complexity Spiral.

Figure 1. The Energy-Complexity Spiral from 2010 presentation called The Energy-Complexity Spiral by Joseph Tainter.

According to Tainter, energy and complexity build on each other. At first, growing complexity can be helpful to a growing economy by encouraging the uptake of available energy products. Unfortunately, this growing complexity reaches diminishing returns because the easiest, most beneficial solutions are found first. When the benefit of added complexity becomes too small relative to the additional energy required, the overall economy tends to collapse–something he says is equivalent to “rapidly losing complexity.”

Growing complexity can make goods and services less expensive in several ways:

  • Economies of scale arise due to larger businesses.
  • Globalization allows use of alternative raw materials, cheaper labor and energy products.
  • Higher education and more specialization allow more innovation.
  • Improved technology allows goods to be less expensive to manufacture.
  • Improved technology may allow fuel savings for vehicles, allowing ongoing fuel savings.

Strangely enough, in practice, growing complexity tends to lead to more fuel use, rather than less. This is known as Jevons’ Paradox. If products are less expensive, more people can afford to buy and operate them, so that total energy consumption tends to be greater.

[2] In the above linked video, one way Professor Tainter describes complexity is that it is something that adds structure and organization to a system.

The reason I consider electricity from wind turbines and solar panels to be much more complex than, say, electricity from hydroelectric plants, or from fossil fuel plants, is because the output from the devices is further from what is needed to fill the demands of the electricity system we currently have operating. Wind and solar generation need complexity to fix their intermittency problems.

With hydroelectric generation, water is easily captured behind a dam. Often, some of the water can be stored for later use when demand is high. The water captured behind the dam can be run through a turbine, so that the electrical output matches the pattern of alternating current used in the local area. The electricity from a hydroelectric dam can be quickly added to other available electricity generation to match the pattern of electricity consumption users would prefer.

On the other hand, the output of wind turbines and solar panels requires a great deal more assistance (“complexity”) to match the electricity consumption pattern of consumers. Electricity from wind turbines tends to be very disorganized. It comes and goes according to its own schedule. Electricity from solar panels is organized, but the organization is not well aligned with the pattern of consumers prefer.

A major issue is that electricity for heating is required in winter, but solar electricity is disproportionately available in the summer; wind availability is irregular. Batteries can be added, but these mostly mitigate wrong “time-of-day” problems. Wrong “time-of-year” problems need to be mitigated with a lightly used parallel system. The most popular backup system seems to be natural gas, but backup systems with oil or coal can also be used.

This double system has a higher cost than either system would have if operated alone, on a full-time basis. For example, a natural gas system with pipelines and storage needs to be put in place, even if electricity from natural gas is only used for part of the year. The combined system needs experts in all areas, including electricity transmission, natural gas generation, repair of wind turbines and solar panels, and battery manufacture and maintenance. All of this requires educational systems and international trade, sometimes with unfriendly countries.

I also consider electric vehicles to be complex. One major problem is that the economy will require a double system, (for internal combustion engines and electric vehicles) for many, many years. Electric vehicles require batteries made using elements from around the world. They also need a whole system of charging stations to fill their need for frequent recharging.

[3] Professor Tainter makes the point that complexity has an energy cost, but this cost is virtually impossible to measure.

Energy needs are hidden in many areas. For example, to have a complex system, we need a financial system. The cost of this system cannot be added back in. We need modern roads and a system of laws. The cost of a government providing these services cannot be easily discerned. An increasingly complex system needs education to support it, but this cost is also hard to measure. Also, as we note elsewhere, having double systems adds other costs that are hard to measure or predict.

[3] The energy-complexity spiral cannot continue forever in an economy.

The energy-complexity spiral can reach limits in at least three ways:

[a] Extraction of minerals of all kinds is placed in the best locations first. Oil wells are first placed in areas where oil is easy to extract and close to population areas. Coal mines are first placed in locations where coal is easy to extract and transportation costs to users will be low. Mines for lithium, nickel, copper, and other minerals are put in the best-yielding locations first.

Eventually, the cost of energy production rises, rather than falls, due to diminishing returns. Oil, coal, and energy products become more expensive. Wind turbines, solar panels, and batteries for electric vehicles also tend to become more expensive because the cost of the minerals to manufacture them rises. All kinds of energy goods, including “renewables,” tend to become less affordable. In fact, there are many reports that the cost of producing wind turbines and solar panels rose in 2022, making the manufacture of these devices unprofitable. Either higher prices of finished devices or lower profitability for those producing the devices could stop the rise in usage.

[b] Human population tends to keep rising if food and other supplies are adequate, but the supply of arable land stays close to constant. This combination puts pressure on society to produce a continuous stream of innovations that will allow greater food supply per acre. These innovations eventually reach diminishing returns, making it more difficult for food production to keep up with population growth. Sometimes adverse fluctuations in weather patterns make it clear that food supplies have been too close to the minimum level for many years. The growth spiral is pushed down by spiking food prices and the poor health of workers who can only afford an inadequate diet.

[c] Growth in complexity reaches limits. The earliest innovations tend to be most productive. For example, electricity can be invented only once, as can the light bulb. Globalization can only go so far before a maximum level is reached. I think of debt as part of complexity. At some point, debt cannot be repaid with interest. Higher education (needed for specialization) reaches limits when workers cannot find jobs with sufficiently high wages to repay educational loans, besides covering living costs.

[4] One point Professor Tainter makes is that if the available energy supply is reduced, the system will need to simplify.

Typically, an economy grows for well over one hundred years, reaches energy-complexity limits, and then collapses over a period of years. This collapse can occur in different ways. A layer of government can collapse. I think of the collapse of the central government of the Soviet Union in 1991 as a form of collapse to a lower level of simplicity. Or one country conquers another country (with energy-complexity problems), taking over the government and resources of the other country. Or a financial collapse occurs.

Tainter says that simplification usually doesn’t happen voluntarily. One example he gives of voluntary simplification involves the Byzantine Empire in the 7th century. With less funding available for the military, it abandoned some of its distant posts, and it used a less costly approach to operating its remaining posts.

[5] In my opinion, it is easy for EROEI calculations (and similar calculations) to overstate the benefit of complex types of energy supply.

A major point that Professor Tainter makes in the talk linked above is that complexity has an energy cost, but the energy cost of this complexity is virtually impossible to measure. He also makes the point that growing complexity is seductive; the overall cost of complexity tends to grow over time. Models tend to miss necessary parts of the overall system needed to support a highly complex new source of energy supply.

Because the energy required for complexity is hard to measure, EROEI calculations with respect to complex systems will tend to make complex forms of electricity generation, such as wind and solar, look like they use less energy (have a higher EROEI) than they actually do. The problem is that EROEI calculations consider only direct “energy investment” costs. For example, the calculations are not designed to collect information regarding the higher energy cost of a dual system, with parts of the system under-utilized for portions of the year. Annual costs will not necessarily be reduced proportionately.

In the linked video, Professor Tainter talks about the EROEI of oil over the years. I don’t have a problem with this type of comparison, especially if it stops before the recent change to greater use of fracking, since the level of complexity is similar. In fact, such a comparison omitting fracking seems to be the one that Tainter makes. Comparison among different energy types, with different complexity levels, is what is easily distorted.

[6] The current world economy already seems to be trending in the direction of simplification, suggesting that the tendency toward greater complexity is already past its maximum level, given the lack of availability of inexpensive energy products.

I wonder if we are already starting to see simplification in trade, especially international trade, because shipping (generally using oil products) is becoming high-priced. This might be considered a type of simplification, in response to a lack of sufficient inexpensive energy supply.

Figure 2. Trade as a percentage of world GDP, based on data of the World Bank.

Based on Figure 2, trade as a percentage of GDP hit a peak in 2008. There has been a generally downward trend in trade since then, giving an indication that the world economy has tended to shrink back, at least in some ways, as it has hit high-price limits.

Another example of a trend toward lower complexity is the drop in US undergraduate college and university enrollment since 2010. Other data shows that undergraduate enrollment nearly tripled between 1950 and 2010, so the shift to a downtrend after 2010 presents a major turning point.

Figure 3. Total number of US full-time and part-time undergraduate college and university students, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.

The reason why the shift in enrollment is a problem is because colleges and universities have a huge amount of fixed expenses. These include buildings and grounds that must be maintained. Often debt needs to be repaid, as well. Educational systems also have tenured faculty members that they are obligated to keep on their staff, under most circumstances. They may have pension obligations that are not fully funded, adding another cost pressure.

According to the college faculty members whom I have talked to, in recent years there has been pressure to improve the retention rate of students who have been admitted. In other words, they feel that they are being encouraged to keep current students from dropping out, even if it means lowering their standards a little. At the same time, faculty wages are not keeping pace with inflation.

Other information suggests that colleges and universities have recently put a great deal of emphasis on achieving a more diverse student body. Students who might not have been admitted in the past because of low high school grades are increasingly being admitted in order to keep the enrollment from dropping further.

From the students’ point of view, the problem is that jobs that pay a sufficiently high wage to justify the high cost of a college education are increasingly unavailable. This seems to be the reason for both the US student debt crisis and the drop in undergraduate enrollment.

Of course, if colleges are at least somewhat lowering their admission standards and perhaps lowering standards for graduation, as well, there is a need to “sell” these increasingly diverse graduates with somewhat lower undergraduate achievement records to governments and businesses who might hire them. It seems to me that this is a further sign of the loss of complexity.

[7] In 2022, the total energy costs for most OECD countries started spiking to high levels, relative to GDP. When we analyze the situation, electricity prices are spiking, as are the prices of coal and natural gas–the two types of fuel used most frequently to produce electricity.

Figure 4. Chart from article called, Energy expenditures have surged, posing challenges for policymakers, by two OECD economists.

The OECD is an intergovernmental organization of mostly rich countries that was formed to stimulate economic progress and foster world growth. It includes the US, most European countries, Japan, Australia, and Canada, among other countries. Figure 4, with the caption “Periods of high energy expenditures are often associated with recession” is has been prepared by two economists working for OECD. The gray bars indicate recession.

Figure 4 shows that in 2021, prices for practically every cost segment associated with energy consumption tended to spike. Electricity, coal, and natural gas prices were all very high relative to prior years. The only segment of energy costs that was not very out of line relative to costs in prior years was oil. Coal and natural gas are both used to make electricity, so high electricity costs should not be surprising.

In Figure 4, the caption by the economists from OECD is pointing out what should be obvious to economists everywhere: High energy prices often push an economy into recession. Citizens are forced to cut back on non-essentials, reducing demand and pushing their economies into recession.

[8] The world seems to be up against extraction limits for coal. This, together with the high cost of shipping coal over long distances, is leading to very high prices for coal.

World coal production has been close to flat since 2011. Growth in electricity generation from coal has been almost as flat as world coal production. Indirectly, this lack of growth in coal production is forcing utilities around the world to move to other types of electricity generation.

Figure 5. World coal mined and world electricity generation from coal, based on data from BP’s 2022 Statistical Review of World Energy.

[9] Natural gas is now also in short supply when growing demand of many types is considered.

While natural gas production has been growing, in recent years it hasn’t been growing quickly enough to keep up with the world’s rising demand for natural gas imports. World natural gas production in 2021 was only 1.7% higher than production in 2019.

Growth in the demand for natural gas imports comes from several directions, simultaneously:

  • With coal supply flat and imports not sufficiently available, countries are seeking to substitute natural gas generation for coal generation of electricity. China is the world’s largest importer of natural gas partly for this reason.
  • Countries with electricity from wind or solar find that electricity from natural gas can ramp up quickly and fill in when wind and solar aren’t available.
  • There are several countries, including Indonesia, India and Pakistan, whose natural gas production is declining.
  • Europe chose to end its pipeline imports of natural gas from Russia and now needs more LNG instead.

[10] Prices for natural gas are extremely variable, depending on whether the natural gas is locally produced, and depending on how it is shipped and the type of contract it is under. Generally, locally produced natural gas is the least expensive. Coal has somewhat similar issues, with locally produced coal being the least expensive.

This is a chart from a recent Japanese publication (IEEJ).

Figure 6. Comparison of natural gas prices in three parts of the world from the Japanese publication IEEJ, dated January 23, 2023.

The low Henry Hub price at the bottom is the US price, available only locally. If supplies are high within the US, its price tends to be low. The next higher price is Japan’s price for imported liquefied natural gas (LNG), arranged under long-term contracts, over a period of years. The top price is the price that Europe is paying for LNG based on “spot market” prices. Spot market LNG is the only type of LNG available to those who did not plan ahead.

In recent years, Europe has been taking its chances on getting low spot market prices, but this approach can backfire badly when there is not enough to go around. Note that the high price of European imported LNG was already evident in January 2013, before the Ukraine invasion began.

A major issue is that shipping natural gas is extremely expensive, tending to at least double or triple the price to the user. Producers need to be guaranteed a high price for LNG over the long term to make all of the infrastructure needed to produce and ship natural gas as LNG profitable. The extremely variable prices for LNG have been a problem for natural gas producers.

The very high recent prices for LNG in Europe have made the price of natural gas too high for industrial users who need natural gas for processes other than making electricity, such as making nitrogen fertilizer. These high prices cause distress from the lack of inexpensive natural gas to spill over into the farming sector.

Most people are “energy blind,” especially when it comes to coal and natural gas. They assume that there is plenty of both fuels to be cheaply extracted, essentially forever. Unfortunately, for both coal and natural gas, the cost of shipping tends to be very high. This is something that modelers miss. It is the high delivered cost of natural gas and coal that makes it impossible for companies to actually extract the amounts of coal and natural gas that seem to be available based on reserve estimates.

[10] When we analyze electricity consumption in recent years, we discover that OECD and non-OECD countries have had amazingly different patterns of electricity consumption growth since 2001.

OECD electricity consumption has been close to flat, especially since 2008. Even before 2008, its electricity consumption was not growing rapidly.

The proposal now is to increase the use of electricity in OECD countries. Electricity will be used to a greater extent for fueling vehicles and heating homes. It will also to be used more for local manufacturing, especially for batteries and semiconductor chips. I wonder how OECD countries will be able to ramp up electricity production sufficiently to cover both current uses of electricity and planned new uses, if past electricity production has been essentially flat.

Figure 7. Electricity production by type of fuel for OECD countries, based on data from BP’s 2022 Statistical Review of World Energy.

Figure 7 shows that coal’s share of electricity production has been falling for OECD countries, especially since 2008. “Other” has been rising, but only enough to keep overall production flat. Other is comprised of renewables, including wind and solar, plus electricity from oil and from burning of trash. The latter categories are small.

The pattern of recent energy production for non-OECD countries is very different:

Figure 8. Electricity production by type of fuel for non-OECD countries, based on data from BP’s 2022 Statistical Review of World Energy.

Figure 8 shows that non-OECD countries have been rapidly ramping up electricity production from coal. Other major sources of fuel are natural gas and electricity produced by hydroelectric dams. All these energy sources are relatively non-complex. Electricity from locally produced coal, locally produced natural gas, and hydroelectric generation all tend to be quite inexpensive. With these inexpensive sources of electricity, non-OECD countries have been able to dominate the world’s heavy industry and much of its manufacturing.

In fact, if we look at the local production of fuels generally used to produce electricity (that is, all fuels except oil), we can see a pattern emerge.

Figure 9. Energy production of fuels often used for electricity production for OECD countries, based on data from BP’s 2022 Statistical Review of World Energy.

With respect to extraction of fuels often associated with electricity, production has been closed to flat, even with “renewables” (wind, solar, geothermal, and wood chips) included. Coal production is down. The decline in coal production is likely a big part of the lack of growth in OECD’s electricity supply. Electricity from locally produced coal has historically been very inexpensive, bringing the average price of electricity down.

A very different pattern emerges when the production of fuels used to generate electricity for non-OECD countries is viewed. Note that the same scale has been used on both Figures 9 and 10. Thus, in 2001, the production of these fuels was about equal for OECD and non-OECD countries. Production of these fuels has about doubled since 2001 for non-OECD countries, while OECD production has remained close to flat.

Figure 10. Energy production of fuels often used for electricity production for non-OECD countries, based on data from BP’s 2022 Statistical Review of World Energy.

One item of interest on Figure 10 is coal production for non-OECD countries, shown in blue at the bottom. It has been barely increasing since 2011. This is part of what is now tightening world coal supplies. I am doubtful that spiking coal prices will add very much to long-term coal production because truly local supplies are becoming depleted, even in non-OECD countries. The spiking prices are much more likely to lead to recession, debt defaults, lower commodity prices, and lower coal supply.

[11] I am afraid that the world economy has hit complexity limits as well as energy production limits.

The world economy seems likely to collapse over a period of years. In the near term, the result may look like a bad recession, or it may look like war, or possibly both. So far, the economies using fuels that are not very complex for electricity (locally produced coal and natural gas, plus hydroelectric generation) seem to be doing better than others. But the overall world economy is stressed by inadequate cheap-to-produce local energy supplies.

In physics terms, the world economy, as well as all of the individual economies within it, are dissipative structures. As such, growth followed by collapse is a usual pattern. At the same time, new versions of dissipative structures can be expected to form, some of which may be better adapted to changing conditions. Thus, approaches for economic growth that seem impossible today may be possible over a longer timeframe.

For example, if climate change opens up access to more coal supplies in very cold areas, the Maximum Power Principle would suggest that some economy will eventually access such deposits. Thus, while we seem to be reaching an end now, over the long-term, self-organizing systems can be expected to find ways to utilize (“dissipate”) any energy supply that can be inexpensively accessed, considering both complexity and direct fuel use.

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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3,434 Responses to Ramping up wind turbines, solar panels and electric vehicles can’t solve our energy problem

  1. Fast Eddy says:

    This is not so bad right norm… cuz of course without all those shots if you got Covid you would have died… badum tsss….

    Insurance Analyst Stirling Finds 7% Increase In Mortality for Each Covid Vax Dose Received, so a “fully vaccinated” individual who took 5 doses increased their risk of [premature] death by 35%


  2. Fast Eddy says:


    I suggest mandating that everyone over the age of 5 learn CPR and how to operate a defib machine.

  3. Ed says:

    Eddy how is the new supervisor of NZ working out?

  4. patrick says:

    always enjoy your work ! it is interesting that at least for the moment here in the us oil and natural gas prices are falling and quite dramatically – the big question how long will this last ? fascinating times

  5. Downunder says:

    Does anyone have a link to the video where a Woman explains how Investment firms have the ability to influence everything including media and Polies. She is displaying the evidence on her laptop while talking, Thanks

  6. lurker says:

    Thai Princess coma mystery – world expert says it’s a COVID jab injury


    • Ed says:

      Bernie vacations in Thailand and falls in love. Weekend at Bernie’s Three.

      If you make it, it will be a cult classic.

  7. lurker says:

    “To shut down a glass furnace means to destroy it. It cannot be restarted. It is always-on.”

    the truth is a little more nuanced, from what i read:

    “The glassmakers say half the monthly cost of operations comes from maintaining the required holding temperature. The furnaces burn at about 2,160 degrees Fahrenheit, 24-hours a day. But shutting down and starting up again is also hugely expensive. The cooling process cracks the crucibles — the clay vats in which glass is cooked. Both those and the fire-resistant bricks have to be replaced. It then can take two weeks to get back up to the right temperature. Effetre estimates that rekindling the 15 to 16 furnaces it typically has running at one time would cost $90,000 to $100,000.”


    the whole article is worth a read. i know france’s largest glass manufacturer is shuttered now, too:

    LA CHAPELLE-SAINT-MESMIN, France — The white-hot furnaces of Duralex have been burning near the banks of the River Loire, near Orléans, France, since the year World War II ended. But this winter, not a soul is to be found along the silent production lines of the firm’s glass factory in La Chapelle-Saint-Mesmin — and not a single piece of glass is being produced. The furnace itself is in “hibernation” mode until April — because the gas required to keep it going at full blast was simply too expensive. When operated at these lower temperatures, it can’t produce anything. But if it were to be turned off entirely, molten glass would solidify inside it and the equipment would be destroyed.”

    complexity rules, ikke sant.

  8. banned says:

    Great article Gail. Always bringing us back to the basics.

    What seems to be occurring is people have mistaken complexity/technology used to exploit resources with complexity/technology in a time of resource depletion. It has to do with the lack of humbleness we have regarding the human condition. If the “magic” is technology/complexity and the resources are mere details than a finite world is not a problem. The reality is the magic is in resource extraction and consumption and this is demonstrated in actions. How rude of Russia to deny us our resources that happen to be in their soil! The west cut its own throat. Russia was quite willing to keep accepting petro euros for energy as long as its physical security wasnt threatened. The ugly truth of the racism directed at the slavs and the cultivation and tolerance of that racism has ended that. The only real question is whether it results in WW3 and a strategic nuclear exchange. The USA seems to throw caution to the wind. “tanks would be WW3” “missiles that can hit Moscow would be WW3” . Reasonable assessments that reflect a degree of sanity in that WW3 is to be avoided. That sanity the dismissed MBTs provided, That sanity dismissed long range missiles provided.

    Even if a real WW3 is not engaged in a quasi war is needed to cover the aftermath of the injection countermeasure deployment and the petro euro collapse. If the organism has a sense of self preservation true WW3 will not be engaged in but the concept of a eternal enemy whether biological or nation state allows cover for the organisms actions which are neither for or by the people. This is called forced teaming and is the fundamental operating principle of criminals. The urgency of the unity of the team -which fundamentally serves the criminal- is asserted as important and attention on the actions of the criminal is also asserted as contrary to the “team”

    These assertions corrupt a truth- the common good is important. If what is considered the common good is not determined for and by the people it is corrupted in the most pragmatic manner. The reality of resource importance is demonstrated in actions.

    Iran-not just yet
    Afganistan- Heroin-no longer needed outsourced to fent. China regional force assertion.
    Syria- border security for non nuclear proliferation treaty signature nation regional non regulated nuclear superpower forward operating base.
    Ukraine/Russia; Whoopsie but internal salvage opportunities. Organism consumes internal wealth pockets as world pillage ends. The ruthlessness and efficiency of external resource acquisition and consumption is now directed internally the continuance of the organism asserted as primary, its actions unquestionable, backed by full measure of “law”.

  9. lurker says:

    that was supposed to be a response to norman’s recent post, still trying to get the site to work with noscript enabled.

  10. lurker says:

    you guys are both part of the rich tapestry that is OFW. it’s one of a very small handful of places i continue to mostly lurk these days. thanks to Gail for collecting such an oddballery of interesting, thoughtful characters, i should miss this place very much if it were gone.

  11. JimBob says:

    Fantastic essay Gail, thank you.

    OFW is a beacon of knowledge in an economically ignorant world. I read your site in conjunction with Tim Morgan (‘Surplus Energy Economics’) and Tim Watkins (‘The Consciousness of Sheep’) blogs. Their work and yours are all logical and irrefutable.

    Best Regards,

  12. susuru says:

    How could our leaders not have known all along that wind and solar would not work to replace fossil fuels? Yet they continuously harp on the need to transition to “renewable energy.” It seems like a giant con. What is their motivation? Partly just to stay in office a few more years by offering a “solution;” partly the money to be made on the build-out; and partly just incompetent leadership. The sooner we revert to simpler systems the better.

    • Kowalainen says:

      They deliver what you want.

      Yes indeed, you get what you deserve. Question: Have the hopium and copium in the eternal status quo of rapacious primate monkey business worn off?

      All retch and no vomit.
      The eternal recurrence in the myopia of ‘ordinary’.


    • drb753 says:

      The elites are factional, and the elders need to sell a “solution” that keeps a sufficient number of key players happy. They have a lot of key players. The US government, for example, works the way it does because they have people at very layer. That is a lot of people.

      • Cromagnon says:

        The elders have blinders time to fleece the population to finance the most extensive deep bunker complexes in world history so they can try to survive the coming cataclysm which purges their kind especially hard every 6000 years.

        • drb753 says:

          where are those bunkers? US? Are you sure some special forces can not go in and smoke them out?

        • Fast Eddy says:

          They would need to stay in the bunkers for ever … due to the spent fuel ponds

          And what about their minders… might they not seize the bunkers when the realize the old f789s are of zero use to them and have no way to control them … money is everything … when it goes to zero why do the commandos obey?

          • Cromagnon says:

            I am certain that in appropriate post cataclysmic time frame there indeed will be “ special forces “ probably clad in skins and bearing spring steel lances and knoberries will indeed storm the occasional bunker complex looking for food, women and anything else of use.

    • Dennis L. says:

      Economically, it can work at present. Electricity produced locally, on site and used on site, not sold is not subject to income taxes, that cuts the cash flow cost of electricity by 1/3 assuming no nighttime solar.

      Dennis L.

      • Most electricity costs are fixed costs. There is only a small amount of fuel cost, say 15% or 20% of the residential electricity price. Adding solar customers adds costs for the company, because it now has new connections to monitor. Things can go wrong.

        What is important to the electric company is getting enough revenue in total from all of its customers.

        Let’s suppose that the utility does net metering. Let’s also suppose that the customer can somehow reduce his electrical consumption by 50%. If he has another 20% that he can sell back to the utility, then his electricity bill is only 30% of the regular amount.

        The catch is that the utility’s costs are pretty much unchanged. It needs to raise rates for the rest of its customers, to offset the give-away to the wealthy customer who is able to take advantage of this boondoggle. It is the poorer customers who must pay more.

        This is a chart I cut out by Wood Mackenzie:

        The cost of adding home solar is about three times the cost of utility scale solar. Acquisition costs for customers are so high that they, by themselves, are equal to the cost of utility scale solar. The homeowner is likely not to keep up the solar system well. This makes more problems for the utility.

        Encouraging people to put panels on their roofs is a ridiculous boondoggle. The roofs are likely not even pointed the “correct” way. It is a way to make the grid less stable and encourage the poor to subsidize the rich.

    • Young people need careers that they can plan on. We need something that looks like it “might” work. Even if it is nonsense, there is a real need for a vision of the future.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        Is there an OFW article that provides a overall summary of the situation from the time when energy prices start to lift off — and the response to this by the central banks — the consequences of that (GFC) — the responses to the GFC — then how they were starting to push on multiple strings in 2019…. culminating in the arrival (release) of Covid (reducing the burn rate) — then the Rat Juice…

        That would be a very useful article… no need to predict the end game.. I’d just add a link to UEP.

      • Cromagnon says:

        I have just begun an educational video series on post cataclysmic skill sets.
        If well received I may open a full fledged school on catabolic technology and Jeremiah Johnson meets Nog the Neanderthal lifestyles.
        Any interest?
        There will be necessary Indoctrination into “the simulacrum doesn’t care” philosophy of course.

        • I am not sure I would be a good student.

          • Cromagnon says:

            Lol,….. the Demiurge may well have taken a special interest in you already Gail. Just don’t make any spoken out loud entreaties to “gods” that you don’t really mean, and embrace the present as it truly is all there “IS”. The AI running this hologram is a real demon.

            Oh yeah, and live on high ground……

            I am gonna focus on the 20 year old male cohort for recruits,……taking away their iPhones is gonna be “ challenging”
            Teaching stoicism well nigh impossible

            They all get to watch “ First Blood” at the programs start….. and “Jeremiah Johnson” mid way through……. we finish with “The Road” ( they will be skinnier and a lot more sheepish by then)…….

            I obviously ain’t in it for the money…… just the free uneducated labor.

        • Fast Eddy says:

          I have long recommended that instead of prepping the mob instead learn how to live in the bush like a hunter gatherer.

          Nobody wants to do that… they all want to live like Little House on the Prairie… ya I get that…

          But that was a Tee Vee show…

  13. Student says:

    (Financial Times)

    EU agrees price caps on Russian oil products
    Ambassadors to impose a $100-a-barrel cap on diesel and a $45 cap on low-end products
    Ambassadors of the 27 EU states agreed at a meeting on Friday to limit the price of premium products such as diesel at $100 a barrel and that of low-end products including fuel oil at $45 a barrel.
    ‘The tightness in diesel markets has raised questions over whether EU buyers will be able to quickly replace the barrels they once got from Russia once sanctions create an embargo. The relatively small implied discount under the price cap for diesel is partly a reflection of concerns about tightness in the market globally, according to members of the G7 coalition.’


  14. Student says:

    (Reuters + Citizen free press)

    Train derailment causes massive fire in Ohio, media report.
    The train was carrying more than 100 oil tanker cars



    • I see the comment below: “Pipelines are much safer.” I agree. Pipelines are a much better idea, but many people oppose them.

      • Student says:

        I completely agree.
        They may not be nice from estetical point of view, but Romans transported water with aqueducts and we know that pipelines are the equvalent of acqueducts in current times.
        We should probably build them in a more appealing way, but they are necessary like also the aqueducts were for Nabataeans living in Petra around 600 B.C.
        Actually they didn’t transport water with camels…

  15. Tim Groves says:

    This video is about chickens and eggs, which are in short supply in many places these days.

    But what I really like about it is the narrator bottle feeding one of his lambs as he speaks.

    • drb753 says:

      what is in that bottle? whey, lard, and mineral/vitamin powder. yummy!

    • Hubbs says:

      I wonder if the Globalists have realized that a low tech approach, that of simply undermining the food source, is more effective than an elaborate subversion via COVID/big pharma hoaxes, perpetual MIC war, debasement of currency, election fraud, elimination of rule of law, massive illegal immigration (Cloward-Piven), destruction of our education system, control of the media, destruction of the traditional family unit etc. And of course trying to get everyone into EVs where their mobility can be controlled and stopped dead in their tracks with a flick of the grid control switch, along with kill switches for the internet and cell phone communication.

      Yesterday or the day before, Mrs Alaska Prepper submitted an article on survivalblog.com about how it is more cost effective to grow an garden on a homestead, whereas maintaining, butchering, and processing chicken for the dinner table is more costly to do individually compared to those big commercial farms and processors. Problem is, a garden doesn’t provide sufficient calories, protein, or essential fats for a practical physical labor intensive existence. If all you do is sit at a desk and type into a keyboard, then food and energy requirements aren’t as critical. But try having to live and labor the old fashioned way. This trendy vegan diet will leave you broken and emaciated.

      There was also an article floating around how individual and small farmers /homesteaders who had been feeding their chickens with feed grain from Tractor Supply Co were horrified to discover that their hens had suddenly stopped laying eggs! However, when they stopped feeding them this commercially prepared grain and turned the chickens loose to free range, they resumed laying!

      It is the 51% of those who realize they can strip wealth and resources from the other 49%, and thus the “need to preserve our democracy,” who are marshaling their forces on so many fronts. Of course, once the 49% productive or self sufficient people are eliminated these parasitic predators will eventually start turning against each other, but that won’t help the 51% by then.

      And speaking of complexity, when I try to either type or dictate into this iPad, I get as many errors introduced as “corrections.” This whole system is needless useless complexity that I find is more of a pain in the ass than of any benefit. Just my opinion and trying to post all of this and go through all of the errors.

      • halfvard says:

        They’re definitely working on both approaches at the same time. The question is it we have rival factions with different priorities or if it’s just two parts of the same general plan.

  16. Agamemnon says:

    The world trade chart correlates to the energy per capita on the previous article. I think the energy chart will reveal the impact of renewables. It might not grow much but might even drop faster if renewables actually require more FF than direct use.
    It’s also interesting that the trend line had been broken and if it breaks the 2018 peak.
    Maybe this is due to pent up demand from the pandemic that will fizzle.
    Most interesting to me is the ramp up from 2002 when peak oil news was hitting. Perhaps This should’ve warranted caution but I guess life doesn’t work for that way. Instead Mother Nature prefers the boom bust cycle, damn a few thinking humans. Well might as well even overshoot & celebrate with fireworks. Gods a trickster.

  17. ivanislav says:

    I didn’t realize Martin Armstrong also predicts collapse:

    “We will witness a return to make the manufacture of various goods locally for each division as well as growing their own food. Energy may revert back to wood and oil for there will be no major power grids as they become localized.

    Our population models suggest up to a 50% reduction perhaps as soon as 2040.”


    • Cromagnon says:

      It’s ironic and rather sardonic humor how all the expert opinion are rapidly converging on biblical and apocryphal text predictions

      It’s almost like the secular objective types might be doing a little covert “alternative research” after dark lol.

    • Martin Armstrong studies cycles and there is a cyclic pattern of collapse every 256 years (this is a Maya cycle – next collapse date: post-2032 … , he’s systems is likely to have that data fed into it, because he’s an expert in cycles. The Bible also references cycles, just not explicitly, so it’s not so strange that cycle experts tend to come up with predictions that are also in some books of the Bible.

    • I see the site talks about 2032 as a turning point. 2032 is nine years away. Perhaps things won’t go down too quickly!

      • Cromagnon says:

        I just sold beef calves for some of the highest prices I have ever witnessed.
        Why is this you ask?
        Because the Canadian cattle herd is collapsing because the young have all moved into the cities and are watching screens.

        They will all perish in the approaching carnage.
        I will stay here in the hills with my bovine charges.

        • GBV says:

          Got any work for a 40-year old Canuck who is desperate to get away from the province of Onterrible?


          • Cromagnon says:

            If you are serious and don’t mind ranch and trapline work I am sure something could be worked out.

            Despite my mild obsession with simulacrum research I pretty bedrock in most things.

      • Gail, Martin Armstrong’s site frequently refers to a collapse after 2032. My studies into a particular Maya cycle comes up with the similar results, which is why there is a likelihood that Armstrong is following that same cycle too.

        It’s quite likely that the world is facing a time of tremendous turmoil and upheaval post-2032 which could potentially last for decades (it wouldn’t be a sudden collapse)

        That/such turmoil would lead to inevitable decentralization, which is what the pattern indicates. The Roman Empire’s Crisis of the Third Century would fall into that pattern – it lasted for about 60 years. Other nations fared better though during that time though – so it could also be shorter. I have done a deep-dive into this cyclic pattern of collapse every 256 years if you’d be interested in reading it:

        • Withnail says:

          The Roman Empire’s Crisis of the Third Century would fall into that pattern – it lasted for about 60 years.

          There was a crisis from about 160 AD up to the official end of the Western empire. About 250 years of crisis.

          The crisis did not end at the end of the third century. Far from fixing it, Constantine abandoned Rome and moved to Constantinople. The situation in the West was beyond fixing.

          • Cromagnon says:

            A smaller X class solar flare will remove the vast majority of modern civilized human activity from the earths surface in the next 2 years or at most next decade ( solar sunspot is nearing high point now and next 2 years). The human population will be reduced by a third at minimum from resultant hunger, disease exposure,…. Lack of YouTube etc.

            Then in the late 2030s the sun will turn blood red,…..the skies will be filled with the dancers of the apocalypse as the massive out streaming of the cresting solar wind tears at the remaining weakened earth geomagnetic field,….
            Then the sun will go black as the thickening dust shell accumulation around the suns corona blocks human visual cues of the great orb……

            Then as the demiurge smiles, Sol will erupt
            and the remaining human realm will vanish in a blast. Arc discharges of a million lightning bolts will blow craters into parts of earths surface.
            Radiation will pour over a surface world rapidly being submerged under vast oceanic movements as the crustal plates unlock.
            Volcanos in their thousands will unleash the great fires from within.
            A few of us smart enough, lucky enough or unlucky enough will huddle in caves or watch plasma screens from deep underground redoubts as the simulacrum resets the program.
            Then, perhaps, if the old texts are correct, something atmospherically bizarre and generally unknown will occur. Humanities hidden gene sequences will become active under purplish skies…..
            and we will enter, once again, an age of Heros.

          • The Roman Empire had a number of crises and it’s crises each had various stages to them.

            I’m referring to the time period of AD 235 to AD 284:

            Here’s an excerpt from my article:

            “The Year of the Six Emperors came three years after the Crisis of the Third Century began [10] which lasted for around 50 years from AD 235 to AD 284. During that time, as many as 26 different emperors ruled for relatively short periods. Just as with Easter Island, Rome’s troubles started about 3 or 4 years prior to the start of the Katun 13-Ahau.

            The Crisis of the Third Century caused the Roman Empire to fracture, leading to its near-
            collapse. It split into three [10] during its crisis but ended up being composed of two parts
            [11]. The Western part of the Roman Empire continued to decline and fracture further into
            separate city-states and kingdoms [11], but the Eastern part grew in strength and ruled for at least another 1,000 years [12].”

            Yes, the point is that the power shifted from the Western Roman Empire to the Eastern Roman Empire, just as it is starting to do now; from the Western Empire of Globalization to the Eastern Empire of Globalization (Russia, China, India, et al). The pattern is repeating – just as one would expect from recurring cycles.

            • Withnail says:

              I’m referring to the time period of AD 235 to AD 284

              I know you are. i am saying the crisis started much earlier and did not end in AD 284.

              it’s no good copying and pasting wikipedia at me, i have already read it.

              as to your imaginary cycles, believe what you want. i find such ideas as boring as the ‘everything is a simulation’ people.

            • Yes, I got that and know that – and I’m saying that specific time period comes around again post-2032, meaning similar circumstances could apply. If you refuse to read the article I wrote on the subject which has ZERO Wikipedia links in it (it was linked to in a comment to Gail above yours), then you are the last person to speak about” ‘believe what you want’. Cycles have always existed and are as valid today as they were 1000’s of years ago, but just ignore whatever you want. Wat do I care? Simply just don’t respond (first) to my comment/s again – easy as.

            • Rhetorical question for you Whitnail, why would “the elders” choose the year 2032 for their GRETA-RESETTA? Pure coincidence?

            • all civilisations grow and expand on the surplus energy available.

              when that surplus is used up, the civilisation dies back, usually subsumed into another one.

              the big difference in our time is that there are no surpluses left to consume.

              this what people cannot accept

            • This is only a valid reasoning from a global perspective, meaning from the perspective of thinking about the earth as one country and all the resources having to be distributed globally. There are loads of surpluses locally in many nation states if one only calculates them having to supply to their own population/s.

              “all civilisations grow and expand on the surplus energy available” – correct, but this is also cyclic (in many cases, but not all) if one cares to study cycles.

            • great civilisations arise for various reasons, and backed by various kinds of resource.

              those resources are then consumed as the civilisation progresses—each civilisation is convinced collectively that ”it will last fro a 1000 years”–ie–forecer. They never do of course because they must ‘consume’ in order to advance themselves.

              Consumption carries its own destruction.

              It seems important to look on it from a global perspective—people finds a means to grow, wherever they are, then fade back–then another group grows, There is no ‘reason’ behind it, other than availability of resources of some kind.

              The UK expanded only because we had masses of coal and iron, and used it to create an empire.

              Then the USA took over—now their resources are depleting rapidly….but the MAGA crowd still think its a political problem or a great conspiracy against them. Lots of people in the UK think the same way….hence Brexit.

            • You omit to mention the colonialism and imperialism that’s part and parcel of empire.

              Civilizations and empires can be distinguished from each other. Few civilizations become empires. Empires are in a different league, but they are much less ‘civil’ than civilizations. They are forces to be reckoned with and they can be hugely destructive to other nations in their ongoing quests for wealth.

              The UK, for example, used the resources of other countries to become an empire (Empire building through the conquest of other nations’ riches). If it were not for the vast riches of South Africa’s gold and diamond fields, that empire may never have gotten the kick-start it needed. More than 25% of all the gold produced in the world came from South Africa, but look at the country now – you wouldn’t say it, would you? But we all know this history, don’t we?
              The USA likewise built its empire on resource-conquest; that’s the nature of empire-building, just like the ancient empires of the past, although their reach was not so global.

              Perhaps the Brexit and Maga crowds sense that decentralization will be more sustainable in the long run and they are simply more pragmatic in orientation. There are always two mindsets in all nations – those who are for centralization and those who are for decentralization. It’s much more complex to maintain centralization during times of scarcity – the Soviet Union tried, but failed in the long run. There are precedents for everything.

            • civilisations–empires–are defined only by scale

              one can have a computer-empire, or an auto-empire, or an agri-empire
              they can exist only by consumption/selling of resources around them

              they consume, and then they collapse

              The US empire was global in reach because they had to try to sustain it by distant oil wars once USA oil went into decline.
              The UK empire looked different, but functioned in the same way.

              We defeated the only other contender (France) for world-empire at Trafalgar in 1805—after that we dominated the global oceans, that was the key to world-scale empire. It also meant that English became the language of exchange.

              Gold and diamonds do not produc energy, they are the transient means of buying it. ie—more and more energy must be found to sustain the buying power of gold.

              (if you are facing starvation–you wont sell your last loaf of bread in exchange for a gold brick)

            • Withnail says:

              all civilisations grow and expand on the surplus energy available.

              The problem you end up with is that you have a big population but your food and energy (firewood) output starts declining.

              What the land needs is to be abandoned and revert to forest, but you can’t do that because you have all these people to feed.

              So you expand the empire, you transport food into the core cities by ship, you keep using the farmland because you can’t stop using it. You keep chopping down the trees and digging up roots and stumps to burn because you still have to produce swords and ploughshares and other essentials.

              And things just keep getting worse. There’s no choice about any of it. It is just what has to happen. Nobody is to blame. Not emperors, not the barbarians, not the people.

            • you get the same conclusion as me Withnail—all of us are to blame and none of us are to blame.

              Collectively we created this mess—it became inevitable as soon as we began to dig deep for coal and iron.

              we will not stop until we are stopped by a force stronger than ourselves.

            • Nobody is to blame – haha, how convenient.

            • energy shifts—it’s good to know that you do not use electric light, artificial heating/cooling and all your journeys are made on foot

              And none of your food is brought to you by fossil fuelled transport, and you fetch water in a bucket from the nearest river, and your body wastes are removed in the same way—also that the clothes you wear are entirely homespun.

              You watch no tv, or any form of electronic media. (what are you doing on OFW btw??)

              None of us is to blame–and we are all to blame

              Its called human nature.

              Step off if you can

            • Norman Pagett, your are projecting your first world empire-state-of-mind mindset on the rest of humanity and calling it ‘human nature’. Humans do not all have this hyper-materialistic outlook where all resources MUST be consumed as fast as possible until it all runs out. Globalization has been pushed onto the world from by the first-world drivers of it until everyone got addicted to the same materialistic mindsets globally, or rather they were not allowed to opt out even of if they wanted to. People who are based within regions that are centers of power always project their mindsets on the rest of the world and think that everyone thinks like them. I am a voice looking in from the peripheries of empire and pointing that out to you, because you are not sufficiently self-aware to see yourself.

            • //////Humans do not all have this hyper-materialistic outlook where all resources MUST be consumed as fast as possible until it all runs out. /////

              I would prefer you to be right on that score, but I fear that you are wrong.

              Was I wrong in general terms on my description of your (and my) lifestyle.?? I think I saw myself pretty well.
              Are you so very different?

              I was describing everyday living—not some fanciful notion of what living should be, as formulated by your thinking.
              I am not hyper-materialistic, but I do consume (finite) resources. As do you.

              We live in an energy-based environment, which requires our existence to be profitable. That’s where your wages come from. (or pension if you are of that age)

              It has nothing whatsoever to do with ’empire’—do try to get rid of that fixation.

              Over the last few millennia, (accellerating over the past 300 years), we have made the planet into property, and rendered its products into cash, to be bought and sold as necessary.
              We have consumed resources as though they were infinite.
              They are not.

              All the stuff on your website is your opinion, and I respectfully leave you to it. If other people don’t buy into it—then that is their opinion.

            • Extrapolate that to what is happening globally and we see the same pattern, but just on a massive scale. Replace the core cities with the core countries and the land/countryside with countries on the peripheries of empire. Same pattern.

            • Withnail says:

              If it were not for the vast riches of South Africa’s gold and diamond fields, that empire may never have gotten the kick-start it needed.

              Gold and diamonds aren’t important. They don’t create growth. The British empire was already well underway by the time they started large scale gold mining in South Africa.

              As to the current state of South Africa, it just goes to show gold and diamonds do nothing. What South Africa really needs is more cheap local coal for their power stations but the cheap and easy coal era is over there like it is in most countries.

            • I agree:

              “What South Africa really needs is more cheap local coal for their power stations but the cheap and easy coal era is over there like it is in most countries.”

            • Gail, I would be interested to know what this is based on: the assumption that S.A. does not have access to cheap coal for its own consumption. I would also like to know what the assumption is based on that coal cannot be cheap again or easily attainable within S.A. specifically.

            • When I look at South Africa’s electricity production, its peak was way back in 2007. Its population has risen by 19% since 2007. Most of South Africa’s electricity is from coal. There have been protests about high electricity prices in South Africa. This is what a person expects when cheap coal disappears.

              Also, South Afrcia’s peak year of coal production was 2012, according to BP. South Africa’s exports of coal have fallen remarkably in 2019, 2020 and 2021, relative to prior years, according to BP export data by country.

              South Africa’s shortages are contributing to the world’s coal problems.

            • Gail, South Africa’s coal power plants were developed specifically to use low-grade coal (under apartheid by the engineers at the time) that’s not suitable for exports – and low-grade coal is by its very nature cheap in South Africa, and there’s certainly no shortage of it. The country has more than enough for its own consumption. The high electricity prices are not because cheap coal has disappeared …

              It’s due to bad maintenance and the collapsing infrastructure of power plants – half of the pants and distribution maintenance is down for maintenance most of the time.The power utility ESKOM has had to take on massive loans to stay afloat. On top of that they are spending millions on running massive diesel generators to make up for the shortfall in energy output due to a failure to expand energy production capacity post-apartheid.

              Here is a recent info-graphic about the deterioration of ESKOM over the years:

              There’s enough coal in South Africa. Its domestic coal problems are down to it’s own failures – I have pointed this out before in comments here at OFW. These problems did not exist under the previous leadership: Production, output, exports and mining were all at optimum levels. Well, that’s what happens when core nations campaign to remove competent leaders and then replace them without thinking about future consequences.

              BTW: An added-on problem that ESKOM now faces is that rich nations are withdrawing financing to developing countries for expanding their coal fleets and that would affect maintenance too. I noted that you did not expand much on the subject of financing in your article.

            • Low grade coal maybe cheap, but to get the same energy value, more must be transported. The information I am looking at is supposedly energy value, not volume. It is energy value that is going down. That is the problem.

            • the energy being produced by any power station has to be cheap enough to be bought by the population it serves—while at the same time expensive enough to sustain itself in a mechanical sense—ie pay for the coal it needs–and process that coal

              if the population at large doesnt earn enough to keep the power station in business, then it will eventually fail and shut down.

              that would appear to be whats happening in SA

            • That’s not what’s happening in South Africa. Anyone who takes the time to study what’s going on in South Africa would know that there’s a variety of reasons for its coal-woes, virtually all self-inflicted through lack of forward planning, lack of maintenance, the laying off os skilled engineers, major corruption, sabotage of power stations by workers themselves (South African news channels frequently report on this), criminal coal syndicates that divert coal deliveries, incompetence of replacement engineers, corruption on all levels, and the laying off of thousands of white engineers specifically – another 500 is set to be laid off in the next 2 years (which is currently an ongoing controversial debate over there).

              I have mentioned some of these issues in commentary in the past.

            • These issues go hand-in-hand with falling supply of coal that is economic to extract. The price of electricity goes up, causing inflation in many parts of the economy. Wages don’t rise high enough for workers to maintain a reasonable standard of living. People respond by corruption and bombing electric stations. Many people blame the indirect impacts but it is really the physics of the situation that is underlying the situation. BP data shows that total energy consumption per capita was back down to about the 1980 level in 2021. It is the low availability of cheap energy that is driving all the issues you have been seeing.

            • I’m sorry Gail, but your analysis is incorrect and there have been extensive research and analyses of the situation done in SA there during the last 12 months especially (I have followed much of of closely).

              The price of electricity is only set to really go up by a significant margin this year, meaning it has not yet happened until now – prices have been kept low, notwithstanding all the ongoing problems, but that has contributed to the massive debt increase, which means they are now belatedly compelled to raise prices significantly.

              I’m not sue which falling supply of coal you are referring to, but I have explained that for local supplies domestically sourced low-quality coal is not in short supply. Although there’s a lot of criminal activities that does affect deliveries, it’s not a major issue for specifically domestic supplies. The supplies are there but the power stations are in advanced states of disrepair and constantly breaking down.

              Coal exports, however, are specifically constrained by a the failing South African ports system and that have lead to major backlogs and logistics problems in getting the coal shipped out of the ports. You need to understand that South is rapidly declining into fail-state status and all systems are failing and states of collapse. Failing to factor this in would mean that any external analysis made of/on/about South Africa would fail to understand what’s going on there.

              The BP data shows lower consumption back to 1980 level, because the level of collapse that has taken place at ESKOM has reduced it’s output and knocked the company back into the 1980s. People are consuming less, because there less output. There were 200 days plus of power cuts last year of 6 to 8 hours (staggered) per day. When the power is off, because there’s a blackout the grid is down and you cannot consume electricity – and that must be what BP’s stats are reflecting, These cuts have been ongoing for years (just much worse now).

              If you some Google searches in the line of ESKOM problems and variatons on that, loads of articles will come up. I just oulled this out of one of them titled: “Explosive information about Eskom’s collapse” on the Daily Investor [.com] – bullet points:

              “Here is a list of issues that experts said are hurting Eskom and preventing it from stopping load-shedding:

              – Political interference and a lack of political will to fix Eskom are at the root of the problems.

              – Poor employees and a lack of skills at all levels are behind most of the breakdowns and poor maintenance at Eskom’s power plants.

              – Eskom defunded its engineering internship programmes which were needed to ensure junior technical staff received the necessary training to be productive. New employees are thrown in at the deep end, which causes problems.

              – Little or no action is taken against poor-performing employees. Employees are often on paid suspensions for months when action is taken because of serious misconduct.

              – Serious criminality in several of Eskom’s operations created a situation where skilled workers chose to work elsewhere.

              – Eskom maintains aggressive affirmative action and transformation policies, preventing good staff members from being promoted to positions that will benefit the company.

              – Eskom is cutting the budget for important projects, including maintenance and refurbishments, which will worsen load-shedding.

              – Corrupt networks continue to exist at Eskom, with politically connected employees facilitating the corruption.

              – Eskom is forced to use suppliers that struggle to deliver equipment for maintenance and upkeep at power stations. It also significantly increases the price of products and services.

              The sabotage is by employees of the company who are very well remunerated, better than most jobs in SA and the company is over-staffed as well, so there’s no legitimate reason for them doing that, but they are in cahoots with the syndicates that also control the contractors that have to come and fix the damages. These are the reported facts on the ground.

              Although from afar it might look the way you explained it, the actual reality is different. I just spent a couple of years living there and I experienced the power-cuts first-hand, read the daily news reports, listened to interviews and discussions and paid for electricity locally and it was not very expensive and prices did not go up by much.

              In addition to all this the country is now expected to participate in a major international green-transition partnership. There’s not much more I can say on this, I hope this info helps.

            • I expect that part of the problem has been that the world coal price, up until very recently, has been too low to properly remunerate South Africa for the effort it needs to extract the coal it ships abroad. Without a high export price on coal, the country has a hard time getting enough foreign currency and enough overall tax revenue. Russia has been having a similar problem with both natural gas and coal.

              If the economic system were leading utilities to make enough money to properly maintain electricity generating plants, they would be doing so. Corruption is a way of working around inadequate wages. Public officials can be bribed to serve the rich, to the detriment of taking care of the poor. The fact that the ports system is not being properly maintained is likely because total collected taxes are not enough to do so. This is related to an energy system that is not working well.

              The green-transition partnership is simply an attempt to cover up the fact that there is no way out of the world’s shortfall of cheap-to-produce, adequate quality energy.

            • Fast Eddy says:

              Remember the guy who built a Colonel Kurtz outpost in remote SA. Wonder what he’s up to.. don’t see him on OFW anymore

            • Withnail says:

              Humans do not all have this hyper-materialistic outlook where all resources MUST be consumed as fast as possible until it all runs out

              Humans as a species do and it’s how we live. Resources are always consumed.

              Usually in parts of the world that have been settled for a long time, the number of humans per acre will be the maximum that can be supported and there will probably be a slight population overshoot.

              For example in northern Scotland and Ireland non renewable peat is traditionally used as fuel. That’s overshoot becasue it’s not sustainable.

            • Your statement is proven false simply by the fact that some people/nations are driven much harder by their very nature to consume more than others do and to maintain a higher quality of life than others are prepared to settle for.

              As we know, GDP per capita in first world nations are much higher than in many other nations. This is perceived as a non-negotiable way of life for some said nations even when resources limits start to set in, as they are now.

              If your statement were true there would have been less disparity the world between rich and poor nations.

            • relatively few people ”settle for what they have”

              they consume to the limits of resource availability, then stop because they dont have the means to get more,, or risk their lives to get more—(hence millions of migrants).

              The USA was filled with the dispossessed of many nations.–t was seen as a risk worth taking

              People know about resource limits, but don’t think it applies to them–this has been so for millennia.
              They are prepared to risk everything to survive.

              no grand plan involved—just human nature.

            • Withnail says:

              Your statement is proven false simply by the fact that some people/nations are driven much harder by their very nature to consume more than others do and to maintain a higher quality of life than others are prepared to settle for.

              That’s just silly. Humans are fundamentally the same everywhere.

              It was not Britain’s urge to consume that made it (briefly) powerful, it was coal and iron ore.

            • but to refine that a little Withnail—it was iron and coal that created the powerful consumer economy that in turn led to the expansion of the British Empire

            • Withnail says:

              If your statement were true there would have been less disparity the world between rich and poor nations

              Nations that through chance happened to have exploitable coal and iron ore were able to churn out machine guns and iron-clad ships. Those same countries had a head start when it came to using oil.

              Those nations made the financial rules. In Europe we used to call them Great Powers (In 1914 all the Great Powers had coal).

    • Fast Eddy says:

      He’s not thought this through.

  18. Student says:

    It is a very sad period without this blog.
    Many thanks to Gail for a new article and her comments and welcome back to all the pen friends (amico di corrispondenza) who write on this blog.
    I will read with pleasure the new article and the relative comments in the next hours.
    Have You all a nice weekend.

    • Norman Pagett says:

      I left off posting for a while, in the hope that eddy would stop obsessing about me….oh well—-I guess I should be flattered.

      Title of Gails’s blog:

      Ramping up wind turbines, solar panels and electric vehicles can’t solve our energy problem///

      6 replies in as many minutes from eddy still banging on about covid and still obsessing about me, and ‘bitches”–your social life must be a wow eddy—girls always respond to that stuff..

      (not healthy eddy, there must be other people in your life?)

      You really should get another string for that guitar eddy

      • ivanislav says:

        OFW has missed you, Norm!

        Eddy will still be posting about Covid UEP “just around the corner” in the 2040 if there’s still internet.

        Eddy, the population numbers just keep going up! Where’s UEP? It seems the Elders got a fraudulent bill of goods from Big Pharma.

        • Herbie Ficklestein. says:

          Posts mischaracterize CDC data on COVID-19 vaccine deaths
          January 11, 2023
          The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is shown Sunday, March 15, 2020, in Atlanta. Posts claiming the CDC reported COVID-19 vaccines have killed more than 16,000 Americans are mischaracterizing the agency’s data. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
          CLAIM: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that more than 16,000 American deaths had been caused by the COVID-19 vaccines as of Dec. 23.

          AP’S ASSESSMENT: Missing context. As of Dec. 23, the CDC reported that over two years it had received 18,007 preliminary reports through VAERS, a user-generated reporting system, of people dying after getting a COVID-19 vaccine. VAERS, run jointly by the CDC and the Food and Drug Administration, relies on unverified reports submitted by the general public. It does not prove that vaccines caused the adverse events reported. Claims about the safety of the vaccines based on data from VAERS have been debunked by The Associated Press on multiple occasions.

          THE FACTS: Peter McCullough, a Dallas cardiologist and outspoken vaccine critic, in recent days added to misleading claims on social media about deaths falsely identified as having been caused by the COVID-19 vaccines.
          “The vaccine is killing people,” he states in a video on Instagram clipped from a podcast on which he appeared. “And it’s killing large numbers of people. It fulfills all the criteria for the Bradford Hill tenets of causality for a medicinal product causing death. Our CDC, as of Dec. 23, 2022, has over 16,000 Americans that have died within a few days of taking the vaccine and that’s probably a gross underreport.”
          The post sharing the video had received more than 23,000 likes as of Wednesday. Videos of McCullough making this claim also appeared on Twitter.
          McCullough, who did not respond to a request for comment, does not specify in the video where the CDC reported the data that he cites. But the figure he uses is closer to the CDC’s numbers from September. By Dec. 23, the number of people reported to have died after COVID-19 vaccination had increased to 18,007 based on preliminary reports submitted to VAERS from Dec. 14, 2020 to Dec. 14, 2022. Through Jan. 4, the most recent data available, that number was up to 18,533.
          Martha Sharan, a spokesperson for the CDC, confirmed the most recent VAERS numbers on deaths, noting that they are “unconfirmed reports.”
          Regardless, posts citing VAERS data to cast doubt on the safety of the vaccines leave out the important context that adverse events reported to the system are not verified, as the AP has reported. VAERS allows anyone to submit reports on any possible reactions after a vaccine, and has clear disclaimers that reports may “contain information that is incomplete, inaccurate, coincidental, or unverifiable.”
          CDC has confirmed just nine deaths caused by COVID-19 vaccines. Those cases were causally associated with rare blood clots caused by the Johnson & Johnson shot.


          Thanks for the new article for us to read, Gail.
          Yes. Even looking forward to Nuttie Eddie and Norm freak show…just kidding, guys….really..

          • Fast Eddy says:

            Why is everyone so keen for UEP to complete?

            These things take time … we still have enough energy reserves to keep BAU from collapsing … so enjoy it while you can

            As we can see — they are doing everything possible to finish you off….

            Merck’s oral antiviral pill for COVID-19, molnupiravir — marketed under the name Lagevrio — may be fueling the development of new and potentially deadly variants of COVID-19, according to the authors of a new preprint study.

            “It’s not a surprise that molnupiravir could cause [the] escape of mutant virus strains or substrains into the population,” said Dr. Harvey Risch. “Its main function is to get the virus to mutate faster.”


      • Ed says:

        Norman I am glad to see you. Just ignore Eddy.

      • We are happy to see you, Norm. Welcome back!

      • Sam says:

        I have really been enjoying Nate Hagens podcast and you tube channel… I go there when this site gets bogged down with too much vaccine crap. I’m well aware of the vaccine issues and agree but it’s just too much. I’m more interested in energy and how this game will play out. Eddy really is a contradiction… he hates people but yet he is angry when they come up with a vaccine to get rid of people. He must be an American who likes to hear himself talk.

        • ivanislav says:

          What’s hilarious is that he goes to various vaccine-substacks to talk about peak cheap oil.

        • Ed says:

          Sam he is Canadian.

        • Fast Eddy says:

          This is how it will play out https://www.headsupster.com/forumthread?shortId=220

          But feel free to visit other sites that will tell you that a clown dressed as Blofeld runs the world and is gonna have eating bugs and owning nothing when the Great Reset kicks in …

          Not a great outcome but it’s far more appealing than the truth which is – extinction.

          There ain’t no other end game when you have 8B people – must have eternal growth – and you run out of the fuel that powers the growth (and feeds 8B)

          What more do you need to know?

    • Sorry, I don’t do well at writing posts and corresponding to comments at the same time. For a while, long ago, I tried simply not responding to comments for a while, but commenters didn’t like that approach either.

      I probably put too much into this post. I could point out some things from it in shorter posts, in the future.

      • ivanislav says:

        Gail, it’s good for everyone to get off the computer once in a while. As much as I like your blog, the interim break between posts is healthy for everyone!

        • Fast Eddy says:

          One can fill the void with Substack… there is no equivalent of norm so it’s not OFW…

          But there are plenty of DelusiSTANIS to confront with facts and logic… they are do-gooder types who believe in good vs evil and all that schlock… fertile ground for exploding brains.

          They are like CovIDIOTS just in different flavours… they generally believe what CNNBBC tells them…

      • Fast Eddy says:

        No problemo… between articles Fast Eddy volunteers to lead a Crusade of OFWers into the land of the philistines and infidels to spread the word (and despair) that the injections are the response to the end of cheap energy…

        Hurling truths at low IQ anti vaxxers is great fun … it’s like going to war knowing you can’t be killed.

        • Withnail says:

          The lockdowns and money printing were the response to the end of cheap energy. The injections appear to do nothing much.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      Fill the void with streams of vax injuries and deaths?


  19. Fast Eddy says:

    YES! norm?


    Spikeprotein INSIDE cancer cells being seen repeatedly by US pathologist Dr Ryan Cole.

    BOTH injection AND infection spike, but in some cases ONLY injection spike inside cancer cells.

    Turbo cancers.

    Reactivated cancers.

    Cancers in young


    • This doesn’t sound good. All of the things we figure out later.

      Perhaps the vaccines will help get the population down. People were told the opposite, but the real situation doesn’t need to match what people were told. Sort of like a slow version of, “Drink the Kool Aid.”

  20. Fast Eddy says:


    Dr Ryan Cole Pathologist


    After both Pfizer and Moderna elevated levels of IgG4 school your body to “tolerate” the spike protein and not mount an immune response to this AND future coronaviruses

    Remember Coronaviruses include colds!! With an abnormal IgG4 response, even the common cold could kill you.


    I was speaking to a multi Rat Juiced MOREON today — she got Covid while overseas… felt deathly ill.

    I was tempted to say — good thing you had all those shots could have been much worse! But I’d have burst out laughing when she agreed so best to leave that dog sleep

  21. Fast Eddy says:



    Fast Eddy
    just now
    The only way you get every government every military every corporation every MSM outlet all medical boards to support injecting a substance that has not been properly tested, does not stop the spread of covid and does not stop people from dying from covid — and which causes endless mutations…

    Is if they believe what they are doing is the right thing to do.




  22. Fast Eddy says:

    The MORE-ONS are comfortably numb… absolutely

    And they love their pin pricks!



    The world is totally f789ed up….it’s turned into a nightmare…. trannies flashing ball sacks in front of 7 yr olds while parents clap and dance long …. puberty blockers handed out by teachers… the most vile filth available online to anyone with an internet connection … BC just made hard drugs legal… add that to the marijuana shops that are popping up everyone… vax injuries VAIDS etc…


    Revenge for this


  23. Fast Eddy says:

    Lots of amusing comments about oil …. this demonstrates that people cannot handle the truth … they get angry and turn into blathering id iots


    It’s a good way to keep entertained… running the MORE-ONS in circles and hopefully drive them into despair (for what they do to the farm animals)

    The one that really f789s them up is when you ask why we steam oil out of tar if there is so much easy stuff left hahahahaha

    • Agamemnon says:

      Someone posted Gobs of oil in n. Carolina. Wow, the majors missed it or maybe the elders are saving it for post collapse.

      • Herbie Ficklestein. says:

        I actually lived in North Carolina from 2007-2015.
        During that time the issue of fracking came up to be voted on in the State legislature. It was split 50-50 pro and against because of environmental concerns ..

        Sarah Carmichael, an associate professor with the Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences at Appalachian State University, said there are a number of barriers to fossil fuel exploration and development in North Carolina, but the main one is the relatively small return on any investment.
        “Our geology is just wrong for fossil fuel development,” she said. The most recent assessments of the state’s Triassic basins, mid-state areas thought to be the most likely to be productive, give some perspective, she said.
        “When we look at these Triassic rift basins, the amount of gas in there is absolutely minuscule compared to some of the major gas plays like the Marcellus and Bakkan.”
        The United States Geological Survey’s most solid estimate is that the Deep River basin near Lee and Chatham counties hold 22 billion cubic feet, of recoverable gas in total. Compare that, Carmichael said, to the 100 billion per year being pumped out of the Marcellus play.
        “So, why would any gas company invest in anything in NC?” Carmichael said. “There’s just not enough return on investment.”

        …North Carolina Petroleum Council (NCPC) Executive Director David McGowan said the shale energy industry would lead to job creation and additional state revenues.
        “Energy is essential for economic growth and job creation,”

        But it has to make sense to do so….

      • Fast Eddy says:

        These are trolls … aka zombies… they post this total nonsense — then never respond when challenged.

        But the other zombies believe whatever they post cuz MORE-ONS

  24. Fast Eddy says:

    2 more American Airline pilots have died in the last 2 weeks, a subscriber to my substack shared so I am sharing; they advised it is just from one funeral home near Chicago. How many more are there?



  25. Fast Eddy says:

    Extermination. There is no doubt]


    Merck’s oral antiviral pill for COVID-19, molnupiravir — marketed under the name Lagevrio — may be fueling the development of new and potentially deadly variants of COVID-19, according to the authors of a new preprint study.

    The study, which is pending peer review, followed the discovery by a middle school science and math teacher in Indiana who found numerous variants of COVID-19 emerged after molnupiravir began to be widely distributed.

    Scientists had long warned that the development of such mutations from the use of molnupiravir was possible.

    “It’s not a surprise that molnupiravir could cause [the] escape of mutant virus strains or substrains into the population,” said Dr. Harvey Risch. “Its main function is to get the virus to mutate faster.”


  26. Jan says:

    The first copper ores to be found where placers where the seam or bed reached the surface. People just had to walk by and pick the greenish shimmering minerals and process them in fires to get a free high quality knife. These areas today are more or less all exploited. Now we have to track the seams in the inside of mountains, dig holes and tunnels, move huge amounts of worthless stones and find a seam that contains enough ore to pay the investment.

    To walk by on a hiking tour or to start a mining enterprise is another level of complexity.

    The oil industry started in Texas, where people just had to ram a pipe into the ground, catch the outflowing crude, refine it locally and sell it locally to entrepreneurs that could monetize the productivity surplus. These fields today are more or less exploited. Crude must be shipped from the other side of the world or be transported through huge pipelines from remote areas, which means the routes must be militarily secured.

    To fill barrels in your backyard or to send crude carriers around the world is another level of complexity.

    The Vikings and probably a lot of fishermen before Columbus where able to jump via Greenland from Europe to the American continent. Dried fish paid their expenses. The Vikings had an amazing technology to build their ships, a special method to connect the planks so they would not break being hit by the strong waves of the Atlantic ocean. A technology the Phoenicians and Romans could never find. It would be unthinkable though to send Viking boats from the Saudi peninsula to New York city as crude carriers. That’s another level of complexity.

    Supertankers obviously must be build from steel. If the car industry shrank, would the steel prices go up or down? Would the mines be run still economically? Would the solar panel posts the earth shall be plastered with compensate for the cars? If the prices went up or mines dropped out of production, how would that affect to building supertankers? Would they become cheaper or more expensive or could they perhaps not be build at all anymore? What effects would that have on the oil price? Could we call higher oil prices ‘inflationary’? Or would it affect productivity? That’s another level of complexity compared to investment into building a Viking boat. Complexity creates dependencies.

    Supertankers obviously need glass for their windows as much as for their optical instruments. In Germany a huge glass factory providing glass for whole Europe was at the brink of closing down with the high gas prices as a result of German politics. To shut down a glass furnace means to destroy it. It cannot be restarted. It is always-on. It is another level of complexity compared to middle aged woodglass makers. It provides another level of quality also. Supertankers and binoculars cannot be made from woodglass. How would that affect the German ship industry building Supertankers, if no glass were available? How would that affect crude prices in New York? Could that be called an ‘inflationary effect’?

    Modern glass, especially optical glass, was invented by Otto Schott in Jena, Germany, around 1900. His genius and hard work let him add boracic acid to the process. Boracic acid can naturally be found in Tuskany, Italy. It is quite a long hike from Jena to Tuskany! Boracic acid can also be obtained from kernite, which can be harvested in Germany. To process that one needs sulfuric acid aka vitriole. The alchemists developed a lot of complicated ways to obtain vitriole. Today it is gained from crude…

    Our modern complexity is based on availability. If availability shrinks, complexity will shrink. We organize our complexity through a self-organising system called capitalism. If capitalism fails, availability will shrink and reduce complexity. The regionalisation incentives to prepare for war reduces availability and complexity. Apparently that’s why governments focus on biological warfare, how Mr. Fast calls it: Rat Juice. But if demand falls, availability will also go back and thus complexity.

    It is possible but hard to replace a self-organising system by bureucracy. The Soviet Union managed not too badly but obviously failed at the end. The Soviet Union was established to exploit the resources the former Russian Reich were so rich of. But today we are in another situation. We urgently need high technology to be able to extract the diminishing resources from the ground. But a centrally directed economy – that can easily help a glass factory at the brink of shutdown – might fail to administer the availability, dependencies and complexity needed to get the stuff out. We don’t even have useful methods to model that, Gail shows that nicely on the EROI concept – that I consider brilliant but not enough.

    All that is why we cannot go back! It is more likely that humans had to make a restart. And that would be a long, long journey!

    • el mar says:

      Good comment, Jan, outstanding article, Gail. Thank you!

    • I concur with your assessment. “Complexity” is created by globalization and centralization – the bigger the global system is that has to be managed centrally (from within rich, core nations), the more complex it becomes to manage it, but it must be maintained at all costs, because the central managers are completely dependent on the system being complex, because all the wealth flows into the centres of the complex system from the peripheries. The centres have been drawing on the wealth of the peripheries and have become powerful and affluent because of that external wealth – and the only way to keep more wealth flowing in is to ever-expand the system and make it more complex. But the whole construct is artificial in the sense that a decentralized state of affairs is the a more natural order and is organically less complex – and is also more naturally self-managing / has better natural equilibrium.

  27. Tim Groves says:

    MSNBC host Yasmin Vossoughian explains her absence live on air.

    Hint, she says she’s developed myocarditis, which her doctor assures her is the result of a cold. If I were her, I’d get a second opinion from my plastic surgeon.


    • Fast Eddy says:

      I saw this the other day and I am hoping this bitch is suffering. Death is too good for her

      • I AM THE MOB says:

        “No man chooses evil because it is evil; he only mistakes it for happiness, the good he seeks.”

        ― Mary Shelley

        • Fast Eddy says:

          Paradoxically what she is doing by denying this is good. We need more people to boost… so there is that.

          However she is a human – humans eat chickens.. those chickens were tortured … so f789 her… suffer

    • Lastcall says:

      So pericarditis then myocarditis all caused by a virus?

      Could it be that any old Corona-virus will cause this in the jabbed because their immune systems are trained to ignore the spike protein now.

      No doubt this thought leader has been juiced; lets hope she keeps us fully informed.
      They have ‘adjusted her meds’; is this an American thing? Like a sitcom, junkfood, MSM lies, lobbying, its just part of the daily schedule.

  28. reante says:


    Regarding the red radish juice chelation therapy from last thread. Firstly, no graphene isn’t a heavy metal but it is electrically conductive.Secondly, the idea isn’t for the juice molecules to drag off the too-big graphene in toto. The healthy body is able to break down the graphene with peroxides. White blood cells release peroxides, which uses a lot of vitamin C BTW.

  29. DB says:

    I watched the Tainter video. It’s disappointing to see how one-way education on complexity and energy is. You and the rest of us have learned from Tainter. But Tainter seems not to have learned from you. Tainter seems to think it could be possible to have a renewable energy mostly modern economy and both he and Hagens seem to think that it’d be possible to simplify the economy without collapse. Really, they almost sound in sync with WEF. They also make OFW’s DavidInA… seem like a pessimist, as they say collapse decades or a century away.

    • reante says:

      Really? Tainter thinks those things? Jesus. Hagens I don’t think a lot of in general although he’d disagree with my assessment of himself that’s for sure; for some odd reason his misanthropy doesn’t extend to himself lol go figure.

      • reante says:

        Sorry, I was talking about Hagens there. It’s supposed to read:

        “I don’t think a lot of HAGENS in general”

      • Fast Eddy says:

        There’s a taint about Tainter… or maybe he let off one of those buffalo farts as he is prone to do .. he always tries to blame someone else

        Ok so we’re having dinner at this Bali joint some years ago … have some of my hockey buddies in town…


        Fast must have eaten a dead rat earlier in the day cuz he’s firing off some Howser Quality Fart Bombs… one of the lads is waiting to use the toilet — Fast exits but not before he rips a howler … buddy gasps in agony … but soldiers on … an older woman enters the ladies just as he’s on his way out of the men’s (the stench is lingering) and she says jesus christ .. and shakes her head…

        He feels shame.

        But he understands there is no way out of this … as the only person there … he must take credit… so he says nothing and heads back to our table… and says you f789er.

        Fast smiles… very pleased with himself.

    • drb753 says:

      And complexity is just a symptom of energy deficits. we are surrounded by ideologues of all sorts, and none of them is any good.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      Oh wow. He is mentally ill… probably cuz he’s so fat.

      Obesity and mental illness go together

    • Withnail says:

      Tainter is wrong about the Roman empire.

      The Romans in fact tried simplification and devolution to keep the empire going, contrary to his claim that they needlessly added complexity.

      For example the provinces were split into smaller units with their own administration. He assumes that this meant the overall government became larger. I don’t think it did, I think it became smaller but it was hoped that the new local governments could respond better to crises.

      He doesnt understand that farmland and forests become exhausted and have to be abandoned at some point. He knows land was being abandoned (agri deserti) but he thinks it was because taxes were too high.

      He thinks barbarian invasions were a big part of the collapse. I think they are neither here nor there. The Vandals for example in the early 400s made their way right through France and then Spain and crossed over into North Africa. You would think there would be a few battles on the way but there’s no record of anything like that. I believe they were travelling through largely deserted areas that had collapsed at least a century earlier. We know that the big (worthless) coin hoard in Spain we talked about was abandoned around 300 AD along with the villa.

      I believe the empire began its collapse as early as 160 AD and by the time of Diocletian and Constantine (early 300s) had almost completely gone. There was still an emperor but he was ruling a wasteland by that point. Only the area where the emperor lived (Milan, Trier and then Constantinople) had a functioning economy.

      • Collapse is cyclic, which is why the Roman Empire did not manage to keep it together even by applying a type of regionalization to simulate partial-decentralization which they attempted to still manage centrally. There are cyclic forces at work that are more powerful than human designs. A lot of people refuse to believe that, but a study of history shows that. rnold Toynbee pointed it out and so did Pitirim Sorokin.

        • Withnail says:

          In Europe it is cyclic for a simple reason. It takes time for the land and forests to regenerate between empires. Nothing mysterious.

      • Interesting!

      • Fast Eddy says:

        I wonder how many donuts Taint.er consumes on an average day.

        It’s actually good to bully obese people … cuz otherwise they’ll think it’s normal to be 50kg overweight and that will result in all sorts of serious illnesses from diabetes to high blood pressure.

        Perhaps if you ridicule them they might get their sh it together and stop ramming sacks of Cheetos down the maw.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        If anyone reading that comment is thinking it’s a bit harsh…

        You are doing an obese a favour by mocking them… it might sound cruel – but it’s kindness.

        It really is.

      • Withnail says:

        According to a Christian chronicler of the time, Hypatius, there was a severe famine and plague in Spain at the time the Vandals arrived, about 409 AD.

        While the barbarians raged through the Spanish lands, and the evil of pestilence was no less vicious, the tyrannical exactor (tax collector?) plundered the wealth and substance found in the cities, and exhausted the soldiers.
        A horrible famine took hold, such that human flesh was devoured by the human race because of the intensity of the famine. Mothers even fed on the bodies of their children, killed or cooked by them. Beasts that were accustomed to the corpses of those killed by the sword, famine and pestilence, killed the stronger people, and after feeding on their flesh, raged about everywhere, bringing about the demise of the human race.

        I imagine plagues became a bigger and bigger problem in what was left of Roman cities as the aqueducts and sewage systems broke down and could not be repaired, leading to filthy conditions and water borne disease.

        Since the 200s AD repair of public buildings and infrastructure had been deficient across the empire.

    • David says:

      Michaux said the plan wouldn’t work, when he was talking to Hagens. They didn’t discuss what would happen if bankers, economists, historians, classicists and others like them carried on pursuing the plan. I suppose there wasn’t time.

    • Both Tainter and Hagens teach are college teachers. Tainter looks at the past, but he doesn’t look at all at current situations. I am not sure what Nate is doing, because I haven’t been watching what he does recently. He doesn’t do his own graphs, which limits what he can do. He has an MBA from the University of Chicago and a Ph.D. in something like sustainability from the University of Vermont. Both of these institutions teach “Happily Ever After” endings. I expect that he thinks too much like a main stream economist. Energy prices will rise and we can get out all of the fossil fuels that seem to be available. I don’t think that it works that way.

      By the way, it is my impression that Dennis Meadows endorses EROEI theory. He doesn’t seem to see the problem with applying it to increasingly complex energy types. Donella Meadows is no longer alive. I expect she would have figured out the what goes wrong.

      • The vast majority of analysts based in first world countries (Nate Hagens and Simon Michaux included, although they are both good analysts each in their own way) simply assume that said countries would always have access to the entire world’s resources (in some way or another), but that reflects “an empire state of mind”. It implies that the empire would continue to have that kind of reach indefinitely. Yet, as things unravel with a decline of fossil fuels globally, the more realistic outcome is likely to be long-term decentralization and decoupling, resulting in less global reach for current core nations (the drivers of empire), meaning less global access to all global resources. I would say this is the biggest blind-spot in the West, the assumption that all the worlds resources would continue be at it’s disposable indefinitely (this is rarely questioned, which shows that it’s assumed). But that’s only my observation from the peripheries …

        • I with you. People cannot imaging the current economy changing substantially. They assume that the US will still have access to resources from around the world.

  30. Genomir says:

    Good article, Gail! Hapoy new year to you amd the commenters.

  31. Naresh Jotwani says:

    For the present, let us leave aside AI and other such fancy things. Today basic microprocessor-based gadgets — e.g. washing machines — have become extremely simple and reliable. There are literally billions of such gadgets operating around the world. Even a hydro- or coal-based power plant today employs microprocessor based controllers and monitors. The energy consumption of microprocessors is miniscule. Most people seem to think “microprocessors are complex”, but the gadgets employing them are quite simple. How does Prof. Tainter’s argument work for this widely used and inexpensive technology? How does the argument work for the internet, through which we are able to engage in this global discussion?

    • The overall system to produce the microprocessors requires minerals from around the world. Semiconductor chips require a great deal of energy in their making, under very controlled conditions.

      Trying to maintain this whole system will become impossible in the not too distant future, I am afraid. It is the cost of the system, including the education and long distance transport, that is the problem.

      • Lorraine H Sherman says:

        “Trying to maintain this whole system will become impossible in the not too distant future, I am afraid.”\

        Gail, reading this comment, I somehow channeled your words, ‘I am afraid.’ I’m wondering if this was a Freudian slip on your part, or a trigger for my own emotions or both
        . I think I’m feeling tragedy more than fear, but can’t help but wonder fearfully how all of our social interactions and transactions will be affected when so many societal members check out by way of death or disability.

        In an effort to bolster my own courage, I looked up some interesting sayings about fear and thought I would share a few:

        “Keep your fears to yourself but share your courage with others.”

        “Fear is meant to be conquered.”

        “Feed your Faith and your fears will starve.”

        “Inaction breeds fear while action breeds courage.”

        “Forget everything and run or face everything and rise.”

  32. ivanislav says:

    I’ve been on a kick watching videos about solar flares and Carrington events. I wonder whether the eddy currents in metallic ammo casings would be strong enough to cause them to detonate. It’s well known, for example, that telegraph wires caught on fire.

    • Hubbs says:

      @Ivan, I think you would need longer wires like telegraph lines, antenna lines, power lines in order to generate sufficient current through inductance.
      You should probably store you ammo in 50 or 30 cal ammo cans with dessicant packs inside and silicone grease around the rubber gaskets to keep the humidity out, although having a gasket allows for a leak in the Farraday cage so if you want to store sensitive electronic gear in an ammo can, you either have to sand down the outside of the lid and box edge to remove the paint and seal with aluminum foil tape or remove the gasket and replace it with a copper mesh, in which case you lose the protection against water vapor. But I have never heard of ammo detonating in a regular rubber gasket sealed ammo can or just in a cardboard box.

      I would think that the Russian Wolf or Tula ammo would be ideal, because they are stored in water proof, sealed Farraday cage tins which require a can opener to open, and the 7.62 x39 or 7.62 x 54r rounds are packaged in separate boxes of 10 within each tin. 660 rounds of 7.62x 39 or 440 rounds of 7.62 x54r.

      • reante says:

        Awesome Hubbs.

      • drb753 says:

        Correct. Faraday’s Law states that the induced emf (voltage) is proportional to the change in magnetic field over time times the are of the loop. It was only wires that made loops over large areas that were affected. So if you know of a solar event coming, a simple flipping of the main fuse at the entrance of your house will protect everything you have. It will not protect the grid though.

      • ivanislav says:

        Good points.

        • Cromagnon says:

          I am heartened to see people actually aware of the real threat.
          Better bone up on sword and spear.
          The Stone Age is about to “welcome” humanity. back into its embrace.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            to get in the mood for what is to come … test your mettle by going into a crowded noisy place — let’s say a rave party … with gloves on and a knife… stab a random person … and walk away… nobody will catch you … anyone who can handle something like that … is ready for ROF.

      • ivanislav says:

        By the way, in case anyone here might get a kick out of it:

        I had a friend in high school who drilled into a shotgun shell with his dad’s drill and it went off (naturally). His arm only got grazed by a single pellet – I’m not sure what orientation he was drilling it, but … can you even imagine that level of stupidity/brazeness? Lucky guy, I’m surprised he hasn’t gotten himself killed or thrown in jail by now.

        • Cromagnon says:

          There are only two kinds of “ men” in the modern world.
          Those who have been in prison and those who soon will be.
          Everyone else is a female dog ( hope that’s not to blunt).

        • Fast Eddy says:

          When I was around 10 yrs old … I came back on my bike from swimming .. and lo and behold there’s a bunch of cop cars and an ambulance on the street near our house…

          Seems one of the neigbhours had a mate over and they were playing with a shotgun – not knowing it was loaded the guy blew his mates head off.

          Wasn’t friends with either of them but knew them … the shooter probably ended up in the home for the Mentally Ill

          I imagine that would be roughly as big a shock as having a heart attack moments after injecting the Safe Rat Juice

  33. Mike Roberts says:

    If Tim Garrett is right with his civilisation as a heat engine theory, there is no way out.

    • Herbie Ficklestein. says:

      Very good point…with overshoot to boot..there is no way out…
      We are gene duplicating biological machines, as well as, dissipating energy organisms..it’s the cosmos program…not our fault

    • Civilization is a dissipative structure. According to Wikipedia, a heat engine is a system that converts heat to mechanical energy, which can then be used to do mechanical work. The two concepts are closely related.

      • reante says:

        Yep. The Big Picture always wins because the context is EVERYTHING. The industrial heat engine civilization is just the contemporary form that the dissipative structure of agricultural civilization has taken, that dissipates biological evolution/momentum itself, out of greed.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        If we burn more coal we can extend BAU a little longer… we need to offset the cooling

    • Fast Eddy says:

      The way out for those wanting an early exit is to inject Rat Juice and hope you get a dodgy batch… if not that Super Fent

      Me? I’m here for the long haul… right till UEP ends.

      Sliding in another bucket list before this all tips over … off to Canada in a week to see the remnants of those I share genetics with.. and booking some private instruction to get my game up so I get the call from the Leafs when the dying kicks into high gear..

      M Fast says — that’s such a total waste of $$$…. Fast says … and those nail hair facial treatments and sacks of clothes are very profitable investments…


  34. hkeithhenson says:

    As someone who has long anticipated the AI/Nanotech singularity and space colonies, complexity does not bother me. Also, I think energy payback time is a better alternative than EROEI. Ground Solar is around a year, wind typically 6 months, power satellites (if they are built) take a little over 2 months to pay back the energy investment.

    I tend to be more concerned about the current war going global.

    • Ed says:

      Keith,what is stopping SPSs now?

      • I think everyone thinks that they are far off in the future. Twenty years is the earliest estimate I have heard for putting much of anything up.

      • hkeithhenson says:

        The main reason is the high cost of shipping parts into space. Everyone expect that to come down with the SpaceX StarShip, but the cost of lifting parts to GEO times the mass needed per installed kW needs to come down to around $1200 per kW to undercut ground renewables plus storage.

        There are other problems. The flight rate to replace a substantial fraction of human energy use over 20 years is around 25,000 a year. A NOAA study indicated that we could fly that much to orbit without too much ozone damage, but methane burners have not been studied.

        Gail is right on the problems of seasonal storage. We can do it with synthetic hydrocarbons or just possibly CO stored in empty gas fields but there is no widely accepted method yet.

  35. nikoB says:

    If solar panels provided enough energy then every solar panel manufacturer would run their factory from them and battery storage. I am not aware of any that do. Nuff said.

    • Good point!

    • ivanislav says:

      Tesla has promotional material showing plans to do just that. Now who’s got egg on their face? 😉

    • sciouscience says:

      A cannabis facility in Somerville, Mass received just over $1million in utility rebates for solar panels to power the LIGHTS they must use to grow that weed indoors.

      I would levy a photosynthesis ignorance tax instead of a rebate.

      • Hubbs says:

        LOL. And to think a few decades ago, indoor mushroom farms required so much electricity that the authorities were investigating homes in which there were suddenly inordinately high electric bills. I saw a big “shroom” operation when visiting my ex-wive’s cousin in his hippy house at Jenner by the Sea, CA.

        But on a more serious note, I don’t see how these grow houses that produce vegetables year round can possibly be cost effective after you factor in the cost of electricity and the lights. I thought this was the big rage in the Netherlands

  36. Steve Bull says:

    The aspect about non-renewable, renewable energy-harvesting technologies that concerns me and is always denied, ignored, or rationalized away is the dramatic increase in ecological destruction it would entail, especially at the scale required to even do a fraction of what many claim it can do. The huge push some are calling for would not only require massive amounts of fossil fuels but gargantuan mining expansion. Given how overburdened our planetary sinks already are, chasing the ‘renewable’ future seems a sure recipe for an even worse toxic legacy than we already have created.

  37. Fast Eddy says:

    Who wants to mock the imbeciles? Join FE https://sashalatypova.substack.com/p/why-are-they-doing-it/

    • Kowalainen says:

      Are you doing ‘da Pootin – cranking ‘er shut?
      No moar copium and hopiates?

      Doge much oh noes.

      Schad eh?

      • Fast Eddy says:

        She’s not doing justice to the theme ‘hot blond Russian babe’ that’s for sure…

        She looks ill… very pale… maybe she’s got HIV or something?

    • VFatalis says:

      Latypova is a shill

      • Fast Eddy says:

        FE has called her out on that … she totally dismisses the peak cheap oil thesis … which indicates she is a total imbecile or she is tasked by the PR Team with covering up the scent…

        She also dismisses the leaky vaccine theory and when confronted with how leaky vaccines caused Marek’s goes on silent.

        She is currently consulting with the PR Team senior management who are struggling to come up with a strategy to defeat FE who is polluting their Substack anti vax channels with unclean thoughts of truth and logic.

        As we know — SS is allowed to exist to control the thoughts of the anti vaxxers.

        All angles are covered

        they won’t be pleased with FE

  38. Rodster says:

    “We now live in a nation where doctors destroy health, lawyers destroy justice, universities destroy knowledge, governments destroy freedom, the press destroys information, religion destroys morals, and our banks destroy our economy ” – Chris Hedges

  39. Fast Eddy says:

    norm – Fast Eddy had you in mind when looking at this disaster


  40. Mirror on the wall says:

    The UK economy is statistically doing worse than any of the other ‘top 38’ economies.

    In the meantime, we are all allegedly thicker than chimps according to the FT, which is why we do not see how fantastic things are right now.

    No lie….


    > What chimpanzees tell us about how humans see data

    People are routinely more pessimistic in their world view than they would be if they understood the statistics

  41. Rodster says:

    Not only will Wind and Solar fail to solve the problem, it will only make it worse because those in charge will trumpet how renewables will save the day and then kill off fossil fuels. Then to their amazement after it is too late, come to find out that wind and solar are not the solution to our energy predicament. Just wait when they find out how much fossil fuels are required to make wind turbines and solar panels.

    • A person would think that people would start to figure some of these things out. Leaders will tell their people as little as possible about these issues. They probably don’t know too much themselves.

      • Rodster says:

        Making batteries of all types especially in EV’s require massive amounts of fossil fuels. How are they going to get those rare materials that are required? You can’t do it with electricity. Earth movers require lots of fossil fuels.

      • John says:

        The blind are leading the blind. The UK largely got rid of any ‘scientific civil service’ decades ago and now seems to get most of its ‘knowledge’ from commercial lobbyists. An apt saying: ‘There are liars, liars and battery suppliers’.

  42. I have just done this post

    When the sun sets in Queensland, energy guzzler NSW is on its own

    • New South Wales has the highest population in Australia. A person would think that the province would want to look out for its own electricity needs.

      Perhaps NSW is a little like the State of California. It seems to think it can depend on imported electricity from elsewhere in the West. This sometimes works and sometimes doesn’t. I am afraid that NSW will have to have difficulty importing from its neighbors before it will consider trying to develop its own electricity supply.

  43. In Fig 4, the 3 sources if primary energy (oil, gas and coal) are stacked together with electricity which in turn is mainly produced from coal (and gas) and therefore a function of the cost of this primary energy.

    The (green) oil columns very much show the high cost following the 1st and 2nd oil crisis in the 70s and then again the aftermath of the 2008 oil price shock and the cost of fracking (tight oil, which increased complexity)

    • The stacking of electricity on top of fossil fuels is the way GDP calculations work. It is a strange approach, but everything gets stacked into the calculation.

      I have discovered that fossil fuels (and uranium) often rise and fall together. When “demand” is high, it is high for finished goods of all kinds. These finished goods use commodities of all kinds. So the demand for finished goods tends to lead to high prices for oil products and electricity simultaneously. The high demand tends to lead to higher prices for copper and metals, too.

      I suppose that high cost of production could be a factor, as well, but the value to the customer stays close to the same.

  44. Ed says:

    New York State governor wants no fossil fuel equipment for new homes by 2025. They seem to be in a panic and are moving up the time frame.


    • Ed says:

      It is currently 6 degrees Fahrenheit here in NY. At this temp a heat pump is just an electric heater. We do not have cheap electric in NY.

      • David says:

        They will work at -15 degC, but the CoP may only be 2.0-2.5 or so.
        At +8 degC, the CoP may be over 4.0.

    • New York is basically dealing with the same supply lines as Europe for natural gas. There are not enough pipelines extending that far north.

      Because of the lack of adequate natural gas supply, some homes are heated with what is equivalent to diesel oil. The EIA lists New York State as number 1 in the use of oil for home heating. Massachusetts is number 2. There is a port in the Boston area for importing natural gas, because of the short supply.

      I suppose propane heat is another fossil fuel energy option. It is advertised as being widely available. It would also be precluded by this decree.

      The only non fossil fuel option would seem to be electric heat, but electricity is expensive in New York State — something like $.23 per kWh for residential electricity. Furthermore, the supply of electricity tends to be falling in New York State.

      I suppose one option is No New Homes.

      • Ed says:

        No detached single family dwellings. We now have ten story apartment buildings being built for the first time. Easier to heat and easier to monitor and control the people.

        • Reminds me of China. Some of the 10 to 13 story apartments had no elevator. If electricity is intermittent, the buildings might as well not have an elevator. The upper floors in these buildings were not popular.

          • Jan says:

            From the 15th story on all the dust and noise of the city is gone. It is something with the atmosphere. It is wonderful! And to walk 15 or more tops is a great training for hiking – especially with the weekend shopping in the right and the baby in the left arm!

    • Jan says:

      A simple solution could be treadmills in the living room before the TV screen. People could keep warm and produce the electricity needed for the luxury life of the Elders. It would fight obesity, too. Together with milled bugs in the bread a wonderfully healthy opportunity! I wonder when the first politician suggest it?

      • sciouscience says:

        If Peloton ain’t doin this yet; it won’t happen ever.

        When I was a child I recall reading in either 3,2,1 Contact or NatGeo’s World magazine about a father who encouraged his children to watch much less television by rigging the power to a stationary bike. It required constant pedaling.

        In 2015, Manoj Bhargava (his wealth obtained from the production of 5 Hour Energy drink) prototyped a stationary bike with a large flywheel that promised to power an entire home. While energy drinks now occupy entire coolers in most convenience stores, I don’t see the bikes anywhere.

        • Fast Eddy says:

          They did this at a gym in Hong Kong once… it was an exercise in futility generating minimal power… and the costs to maintain it caused them to ditch the idiocy

  45. notabilia says:

    This is, of course, not the End Times, or any religious babble invoking nonsensical supernatural forces, but it is, and will only be, the Major Shit Times.
    The supersystem has begun its larger amplitude wobbles, and yet the corporate forces holding onto the lines of energy extraction and production will continue the chase.

    • If there is any possibility of any approach to energy extraction working, companies will want to pursue these approaches.

      No one dares talk about the real issues we are facing, I am afraid.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      Let me fix this for you…

      This is… an Extinction Event https://www.headsupster.com/forumthread?shortId=220

      A most welcome outcome given what we have done to this planet.

      Humans are a disgrace.

      • ivanislav says:

        A good quote:

        The Sri Lankan President struggled to get to the Maldives and is reportedly being welcomed by Singapore.

        However what we are observing in Sri Lanka and other periphery countries will eventually strike the core countries.

        The elites can flee in private jets but all they are doing is climbing up to the stern of the Titanic.

        • Fast Eddy says:


        • You are right, the peripheries are affected first (because they are following the (non-nonsensical) policies/directives of core nations, but the collapse will spiral inwards.

          Look at what’s happening in South Africa right now; following core-nation directives for moving away from coal and transitioning to renewables while already having had more than 200 days of electricity blackouts in one year (2022). The country is touted to be a partner with rich nations in this project to show the way forward in how to move away “successfully” from coal.

          Well let’s see how that works out … (Germany could not even manage it after decades of trying with massive investements, now they are restarting some coal power plants and importing more coal from South Africa (among other places).

          It’s like watching a slow moving train (S.A.) run out of steam (coal …). Everyone can see that if you don’t first have another locomotive at the ready that uses a different energy, to take over from the steam locomotive/s, the train (the economy) would falter and grind to a halt, yet the locomotive drivers can’t see it and refuse to see it.

      • notabilia says:

        Fast Eddy, Norm said that you need to put another guitar string on your guitar, but aren’t you the son of Duane Eddy? And why did you do that to poor Jacinda?

  46. Mirror on the wall says:

    Gail is finally back online, and it was worth the wait.

    If only windmills could ‘save’ us then the genius of the Dutch would have already saved us long ago.

    But history did not work out that way, the British Empire was the dominant power, and actual, existent economies are a lot more complex than that.

    The higher that we rose, the further that we have to fall? It is an irony. But can anyone really be blamed on that count?

    I get the bit about that humans are worthwhile, and things ‘really ought’ to have work out for the best.

    It is just a shame that things did not actually work out that way.

    But all will be well in the end. Maybe one day we will learn to value what we already have?

    • A sad situation we are in. A sad song.

      • Mirror on the wall says:

        I see it as a joyful song.

        Our perception of reality is fundamentally unaltered by society.

        The flowers still bloom and the moon still shines through the clouds.

        That sort of thing.

        Societies come and go, and certainly economies, but humans are whatever we have become.

        We suffer, when we can be bother to, but the world remains an aesthetic paradise that remains within the reach of any of us – whenever we concentrate on what is real in the here and now.

        Presumably we do that regardless of the colour of our eyes. Mine are X, but I am not saying that other human eyes do not refract worthwhile hues.

        The British State is a bourgeois state and it will come and go the same as the feudal state, but we will always have what we have obtained through billions of years of reality perception.

        That is how I see it anyway. I will always have my perception of reality, whatever comes of the British State. Like, who even cares on that count?

        Maybe not everyone sees it that way, but maybe not everyone is my own responsibility and one has to know who one is and who one is not?

        If people are not happy, then they need to rise up. No one can do that for them, and I am not given to posture otherwise.

        People have to decide for themselves what they want to do. Just as I have to.

        It is all good as far as I am concerned, and I play these songs because I am happy.

        I choose only the positive affects.

        Even I may get angry sometimes, but I am always happy. The ‘problem’ is always someone else as far as I can make out.

        Let me play another nice one, perhaps less ambiguous.

        I am the least religious as you know, so Ave Me. Schubert….

        • Kowalainen says:

          ”but humans are whatever we have become”

          Not so fast there Sherlock…

          “but humans are whatever we chose to become”

          There, now it’s better. Can’t quite find excuses with that biological mushy computer system, can we?

          In the mean time let us ponder upon the sexual dimorphism and meditate upon the koan below:

          Hypers gonna hyper!
          MOARons gonna moaron!
          Tryhards gonna tryhard.
          Andddd it’s all GONE!
          All retch and no vomit!
          Forever pointlessly spinning the wheel of folly!
          Ad nauseum, in perpetuity!
          The eternal boredom!

          If you are in doubt. Let’s have a good looooong look at the ruins of the past.



      • TQO says:

        Well, here’s a more cheerful song about what’s to come (it’s from a current show about a post-apocalyptic world!): https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=psjdH42qIM4
        It is a terrible situation in so many ways and unlike some I cannot revel in the suffering. But we lost a lot building this monstrosity and we might get some of that back in due course.
        Thanks, Gail, for the posts that are always enlightening.

    • Mirror on the wall says:

      I am my own ‘hero’, you know?

      I transcended this society like 50 years ago.

      And now, I am like an untouched field in the middle of nowhere. Some grass and the occasional flower.

      You know?

      Obviously we are going to have to settle with the Tory Party, which is building on my fields just for the money.

      You know?

      Because, I do not really care for those impositions.

      Because, I am as an untouched field with dew, organisms and stuff, you know?

      No surrender.

      • Tim Groves says:

        I prefer the Vincent van Gogh version:

        No More Ear’oles Anymore

        You wanna make Van Goghs
        Raise ’em up like sheep
        Make ’em out of Eskimos
        And women if you please
        Make ’em nice and normal
        Make ’em nice and neat
        You see him with his shotgun there?
        Bloodied in the wheat?
        Oh what do you know about
        Living in Turbulent Indigo?

        Brash fields, crude crows
        In a scary sky …
        In a golden frame
        Roped off
        Tourists guided by …
        Tourists talking about the madhouse
        Talking about the ear
        The madman hangs in fancy homes
        They wouldn’t let him near!
        He’d piss in their fireplace!
        He’d drag them through Turbulent Indigo

        “I’m a burning hearth,” he said
        “People see the smoke
        But no one comes to warm themselves
        Sloughing off a coat
        And all my little landscapes
        All my yellow afternoons
        Stack up around this vacancy
        Like dirty cups and spoons
        No mercy Sweet Jesus!
        No mercy from Turbulent Indigo.


    • Christopher says:

      The dutch didn´t have any coal and they ran out of peat moss fairly quickly.

  47. houtskool says:

    “One point Professor Tainter makes is that if the available energy supply is reduced, the system will need to simplify”

    That would imply just one Fast Eddy comment per thread.

    And just one bucket for Norm.

  48. CTG says:

    Thanks for the new article.. solar panels don’t make lubricants.

  49. Retired Librarian says:

    Yay! A new posting, thank you!

Comments are closed.