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Economists insist that recovery is at hand, yet unemployment remains high, real estate values continue to sink, and governments stagger under record deficits. The End of Growth proposes a startling diagnosis: humanity has reached a fundamental turning point in its economic history. The expansionary trajectory of industrial civilization is colliding with non-negotiable natural limits. Richard Heinberg's latest landmark work goes to the heart of the ongoing financial crisis, explaining how and why it occurred, and what we must do to avert the worst potential outcomes. Written in an engaging, highly readable style, it shows why growth is being blocked by three factors: Resource depletion Environmental impacts Crushing levels of debt These converging limits will force us to re-evaluate cherished economic theories and to reinvent money and commerce. The End of Growth describes what policy makers, communities, and families can do to build a new economy that operates within Earth's budget of energy and resources. We can thrive during the transition if we set goals that promote human and environmental well-being, rather than continuing to pursue the now-unattainable prize of ever-expanding GDP. Richard Heinberg is the author of nine previous books, including The Party's Over, Peak Everything, and Blackout. A senior fellow of the Post Carbon Institute, Heinberg is one of the world's foremost peak oil educators and an effective communicator of the urgent need to transition away from fossil fuels.
What magic, or monster, lurks behind the light switch and gas pump? Where does the seemingly limitless energy that fuels modern society come from? From oil spills, nuclear accidents, mountaintop-removal coal mining, and natural gas "fracking" to wind power projects and solar power plants, every source of energy has costs. The Energy Reader takes an unfliching look at the systems that support our insatiable thirst for more power along with their unintended side effects.
Discusses, with documentation, when oil production is likely to peak and then begin to decline, and what will be the likely consequences of that decline. Also discusses ways the decline could be dealt with, from a personal to a global perspective.
Heinberg (New College of California's Campus for Sustainable Living) previously set forth the argument that the world's oil production is peaking and will henceforth go into decline in The Party's Over: Oil, War and the Fate of Industrial Societies. Here he collects 11 essays exploring some of the social, economic, ecological, and political implications of the end of the era of cheap energy. These implications arise out of the recognition that the arrival of peak oil portends also the peak of per-capita consumption levels, economic growth, cheap and easy mobility, technological change and invention, and political stability, but perhaps also the peak of economic inequality, environmental destruction, and greenhouse gas emissions. Distributed by Consortium Books Sales and Distribution. Annotation ©2008 Book News, Inc. , Portland, OR (booknews. com)
How do population, water, energy, food, and climate issues impact one another? What can we do to address one problem without making the others worse? The Post Carbon Reader features essays by some of the world's most provocative thinkers on the key issues shaping our new century, from renewable energy and urban agriculture to social justice and community resilience. This insightful collection takes a hard-nosed look at the interconnected threats of our global sustainability quandary and presents some of the most promising responses. Book jacket.
If the US continues with its current policies, the next decades will be marked by war, economic collapse, and environmental catastrophe. Resource depletion and population pressures are about to catch up with us, and no one is prepared. The political elites, especially in the US, are incapable of dealing with the situation and have in mind a punishing game of "Last One Standing." The alternative is "Powerdown," a strategy that will require tremendous effort and economic sacrifice in order to reduce per-capita resource usage in wealthy countries, develop alternative energy sources, distribute resources more equitably, and reduce the human population humanely but systematically over time. While civil society organizations push for a mild version of this, the vast majority of the world's people are in the dark, not understanding the challenges ahead, nor the options realistically available. Powerdown speaks frankly to these dilemmas. Avoiding cynicism and despair, it begins with an overview of the likely impacts of oil and natural gas depletion and then outlines four options for industrial societies during the next decades: Last One Standing: the path of competition for remaining resources; Powerdown: the path of cooperation, conservation and sharing; Waiting for a Magic Elixir: wishful thinking, false hopes, and denial; Building Lifeboats: the path of community solidarity and preservation. Finally, the book explores how three important groups within global society-the power elites, the opposition to the elites (the antiwar and antiglobalization movements, et al: the "Other Superpower"), and ordinary people-are likely to respond to these four options. Timely, accessible and eloquent, Powerdown is crucial reading for our times. Richard Heinberg is an award-winning author of five previous books, including The Party's Over: Oil, War and the Fate of Industrial Societies.
The rapid spread of hydraulic fracturing ("fracking") has temporarily boosted US natural gas and oil production ... and sparked a massive environmental backlash in communities across the country. The fossil fuel industry is trying to sell fracking as the biggest energy development of the century, with slick promises of American energy independence and benefits to local economies. SNAKE OIL casts a critical eye on the oil-industry hype that has hijacked America's energy conversation. This is the first book to look at fracking from both economic and environmental perspectives, informed by the most thorough analysis of shale gas and oil drilling data ever undertaken. Is fracking the miracle cure-all to our energy ills, or a costly distraction from the necessary work of reducing our fossil fuel dependence?
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