Richard Heinberg

Senior Fellow at PostCarbon Institute. Picture taken at the recent Economics of Happiness conference.

Here’s my favorite quote from his book, Peak Oil.

“The longer we wait the fewer our options. Social liberals and progressives who fail to talk about population and resource issues and to propose workable solutions are merely helping to create their own worst nightmare.”

My opinion? I’ve lived through quite a few generations, and of course there have been even more before me. I see that every generation has taken pride in dealing with the negative symptoms caused by our expanding human population, for the most part without a thought to the ROOT CAUSE of the symptoms. Of course — in the good old days we lacked technology to address the root cause. Now in this generation we are eating more food than the planet has to give us, we have all the technology we need to provide and distribute birth control and training for every person on earth who wants it (well, maybe not every single one). What are we doing? We are using our technologies to make more people so the corposystem can profit by their birth, life and death.

When there are more mouths to feed than there is food to feed them, people and other species starve. When there are not enough other species to maintain the natural cycles that make our food (and air and water distribution and soil and climate) — No, technology can not change the laws of nature that determine how these things happen on earth.

You know that as well as I do. Lucky we are — we aren’t the ones starving.

Yet.

That’s my personal and professional opinion.

Recommended reading: Peak Oil, by Richard Heinberg (and his latest book The End of Growth)
Collapse, by Jarrod Diamond

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