What do subprime mortgages, Atlantic salmon dinners, SUVs and globalization have in common?
They all depend on cheap oil.
But from the depleting oil wells of the Middle East to the soaring cost of their unconventional replacements, like tar sands, the era of cheap oil is over, just as globalization has made the world economy ever more thirsty for the fuel.
Oil prices, of course, will still fall in the middle of a recession, just as they have recently, but they will never be cheap again.
The world isn’t about to run out of oil—it’s just running out of oil that we can afford to burn. And whether we move goods by air, ship, truck or rail, the global economy runs on oil.
Replace cheap oil with tomorrow’s triple-digit prices and all of a sudden the wheels of globalization get thrown into reverse. Distance will soon cost money, radically redefining both economic geography and global trade patterns.
Soaring transport costs suddenly change the entire economics of importing everything from cheap labour markets half way around the world. So much so that triple digit oil prices will soon breathe new life into our hollowed-out rust belts, and, in the process, bring long-lost manufacturing jobs back home.
The repatriation of factory jobs to Western economies will take place all the sooner when the cost of burning oil includes not only the price of buying the fuel but also the price for the carbon emissions it leaves in the atmosphere.
As the global economy implodes under the weight of triple-digit oil prices, local economies will suddenly re-emerge. And as our economy changes, so too will our oil-dependent, long-distance lifestyles.
From farmers’ markets to carbon tariffs, from the revitalization of manufacturing to the reconversion of far-flung suburbs back to the farmland that they once were, our future is going to, in many respects, resemble the now-distant past.
There is little we can do to prevent oil prices from returning to triple-digit levels. But those prices don’t necessarily have to be apocalyptic.
There is much that we can do to make sure that soaring oil prices don’t have the same devastating consequences on our economies as they have had during past recessions as well as during the recent one.
In order to insulate ourselves from even greater oil price shocks in the future, we must move from the hugely energy-intensive model of a global economy to the far more sustainable model of a local economy. And that means we must re-engineer our lives to adapt to the contours of a much smaller world.
While much could go terribly wrong in this transition, don’t be surprised if we find more than a few silver linings in the process. And don’t be surprised if the new smaller world that emerges isn’t a more livable and enjoyable world than the much larger one we are about to leave behind.
Island Nucklehead wrote:Can't wait to hear your views on Afghanistan DP, that'll be an enlightening piece of journalistic talent, I'm sure!
I'm sick of hearing about oil. Really, garbage commercials telling me a CAR commercial was made without a carbon footprint. Puke in my own lap. Gross.
I'm going to start a "Carbon cleanup" business. You can sell your "carbon credits" to me, and I'll do sweet F all with them (cept take your cash), nothing will happen and I'll be rich! Nothing Changes!!!!
The first mass age of the automobile in Canada came in the 1930s as provincial governments built the nations initial highways. It was not untill the 1950s, following decades of depression and war that the automobile became a means of transportation for most Canadian families. Over the space of a few decades, governments built superhighways and the trans-canada highway. Suburbs, relying on the automobile as the crucial form of transportation, exploded outwards from the cities. Urban density fell as city dwellers shifted from public transit to their cars. The public saw expressways as symbols of progress. One of them, the notorious Gardiner Expressway in Toronto, cut the city off from its lakefront. It was not untill the 1970s, not coincidentally a decade when the price of petroleum exploded, that city dwellers percieved the downside of expresswways that tore up neighbourhoods. In Toronto, public pressure stopped the building of the planned Spadina Expressway.
The initial era of skyrocketing petroleum prices lasted from 1973 to 1982. From 1982, when prices plunged,untill the early years of the twenty-first century, petroleum was once again cheap, and Canadians, in company with Americans, purchased vast numbers of SUVs, vans, pickup trucks and recreation vehicles, all vehicles with poor gas mileage. The rising price of petroleum during this decade, coupled with the bursting of the global property price bubble beggining in the United States and the onset of a global economic crisis, plunged Canadians into a new wolrd of transportation issues.
With an inefficient fleet of automobiles, poor public transit, an ailing rail system, and airlines plagued with a host of problems, Canada is woefully ill prepared for a transportation revolution. For a country whose vast size and low population have always made transportation a vital matter, the lack of planning by governments and industry to prepare for the dramatic changes in transportation has been flagrant, not to say negligent.
What Canada needs is an approach to transportation equipment industries that is integrated, not only so that sutos, rail and aircraft can play their roles effectively, but also so that the transportation sectors are developed in conjunction with the other major changes underway.Along with the economic crisis that confronts us, we are living in a time when the pressures of climate change and peak oil - the passing of the age of readily available petroleum on a scale sufficient to meet global needs - are forcing industrial societies to rebuild their cities along with their transportation systems and transportation equipment industries. Among the transformations we can anticipate in Canada and other industrialized countries are:
- the decline of the suburb and a return to the more densely populated urban patterns of earlier times
- the closing of centres of large metropolises to private automobiles, in favour of tramways, subways and taxis
- the elimination of air travel for distances less than 500 km in substantially populated regions and the replacement of short-haul flights by high-speed trains;
- The decline of truck transport for long routes and the rebuilding of rail lines to take up a much larger share of the shipment of freight; the demise of SUVs, recreational vehicles and cars with more than 4 cylanders; the long-term replacement of traditional automobiles by hybrids and zero emission vehicles.
What makes this a moment of immense opportunity for those who will seize it is that all of the vehicle manufacturers in the world are starting from scratch, just as their predecessors were at the beginning of the 20th century. The internal combustion engine, propelled by gasoline, transformed the worlds cities and the lives of billions of people. For the working people who built them and for the wage and salary earners who drove them, automobiles delivered mobility and freedom that the wealthiest people of a few generations earlier would have found unimaginable.
But the automobile in a time of global warming, peak oil, and choking cities now threatens the people of the world. Once a liberator, in it's present form it imprisons. This fundamental condition of our new century is understood all around the world.We are starting from scratch in the creation of the new personal vehicles - call them cars - that must be conceived alongside the other transportation modes of our time. We are starting from scratch with ideas for how to re-create our cities, shift from petroleum to other fuels, and sharply reduce the emission of greenhouse gases.
In the paper we start with an ecological economics perspective on what “sustainability” really means when it comes to climate change policies, and from that we consider implications for “green jobs”. These are both important concepts that in the course of prominent usage tend to get thrown around without much clarity. So, we try to fill in those containers with meaning.
One important implication is that we need to cut our fossil fuel habit by 2040, and reduce remaining greenhouse gases to near-zero by mid-century. That means we need a moratorium on new oil and gas developments unless 100% of the emissions can be sequestered underground forever. It means that people and governments should not waste time and money assuaging carbon guilt by buying offsets. And it means rethinking industrial policies that have been successful in economic terms, but now fly in the face of good climate policies.
But jet fuel wasn't the only thing burning, notes Forman Williams, a professor of engineering at the University of California, San Diego, and one of seven structural engineers and fire experts that PM consulted. He says that while the jet fuel was the catalyst for the WTC fires, the resulting inferno was intensified by the combustible material inside the buildings, including rugs, curtains, furniture and paper. NIST reports that pockets of fire hit 1832°F.
Once each tower began to collapse, the weight of all the floors above the collapsed zone bore down with pulverizing force on the highest intact floor. Unable to absorb the massive energy, that floor would fail, transmitting the forces to the floor below, allowing the collapse to progress downward through the building in a chain reaction. Engineers call the process "pancaking," and it does not require an explosion to begin, according to David Biggs, a structural engineer at Ryan-Biggs Associates and a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) team that worked on the FEMA report.
Why wasn't the hole as wide as a 757's 124-ft.-10-in. wingspan? A crashing jet doesn't punch a cartoon-like outline of itself into a reinforced concrete building, says ASCE team member Mete Sozen, a professor of structural engineering at Purdue University. In this case, one wing hit the ground; the other was sheared off by the force of the impact with the Pentagon's load-bearing columns, explains Sozen, who specializes in the behavior of concrete buildings. What was left of the plane flowed into the structure in a state closer to a liquid than a solid mass. "If you expected the entire wing to cut into the building," Sozen tells PM, "it didn't happen."
Blast expert Allyn E. Kilsheimer was the first structural engineer to arrive at the Pentagon after the crash and helped coordinate the emergency response. "It was absolutely a plane, and I'll tell you why," says Kilsheimer, CEO of KCE Structural Engineers PC, Washington, D.C. "I saw the marks of the plane wing on the face of the building. I picked up parts of the plane with the airline markings on them. I held in my hand the tail section of the plane, and I found the black box." Kilsheimer's eyewitness account is backed up by photos of plane wreckage inside and outside the building. Kilsheimer adds: "I held parts of uniforms from crew members in my hands, including body parts. Okay?"
The article's approach is to identify and attack a series of claims which it asserts represent the whole of 9/11 skepticism. It gives the false impression that these claims, several of which are clearly absurd, represent the breadth of challenges to the official account of the flights, the World Trade Center attack, and the Pentagon attack. Meanwhile it entirely ignores vast bodies of evidence showing that only insiders had the means, motive, and opportunity to carry out the attack.
The article gives no hint of the put options on the targeted airlines, warnings received by government and corporate officials, complicit behavior by top officials, obstruction of justice by a much larger group, or obvious frauds in the official story. Instead it attacks a mere 16 claims of its choosing, which it asserts are the "most prevalent" among "conspiracy theorists." The claims are grouped into topics which cover some of the subjects central to the analysis of 9-11 Research. However, for each topic, the article presents specious claims to divert the reader from understanding the issue.
More important, it misrepresents skeptics' views by implying that the skeptics' community is an undifferentiated "army" that wholly embraces the article's sixteen "poisonous claims," which it asserts are "at the root of virtually every 9/11 alternative scenario." In fact much of the 9/11 truth community has been working to expose many of these claims as disinformation.
Following the publication of the article and its exaltation by the mainstream media as the final nail in the coffin for 9/11 conspiracy theories, it was revealed that senior researcher on the piece Benjamin Chertoff is the cousin of Michael Chertoff, Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.
This means that Benjamin Chertoff was hired to write an article that would receive nationwide attention, about the veracity of the government's explanation of an event that led directly to the creation of Homeland Security, a body that his own cousin now heads.
This is unparalleled nepotism and completely dissolves the credibility of the article before one has even turned the first page.
The article also makes no mention whatsoever of the numerous war games scheduled for the morning of 9/11 which confused air defense personnel as to the true nature of the attack as it unfolded, as is documented by the recent release of the NORAD tapes.
A section on the collapse of the World Trade Center fails to address firefighters and other individuals who reported numerous explosions before the towers fell, squibs of debris seen shooting out of the towers well below the collapse point, and the fact that the towers fell only slightly slower than absolute free fall.
The National Institute of Standards and Technology, based near Washington DC, is expected to conclude in its long-awaited report this month that ordinary fires caused the building to collapse.
That would make it the first and only steel skyscraper in the world to collapse because of fire.
The National Institute of Standards and Technology's lead investigator, Dr Shyam Sunder, spoke to BBC Two's "The Conspiracy Files":
"Our working hypothesis now actually suggests that it was normal building fires that were growing and spreading throughout the multiple floors that may have caused the ultimate collapse of the buildings."
However, a group of architects, engineers and scientists say the official explanation that fires caused the collapse is impossible. Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth argue there must have been a controlled demolition.
The founder of the group, Richard Gage, says the collapse of the third tower is an obvious example of a controlled demolition using explosives.
"Building Seven is the smoking gun of 9/11. A sixth grader can look at this building falling at virtually freefall speed, symmetrically and smoothly, and see that it is not a natural process.
"Buildings that fall in natural processes fall to the path of least resistance", says Gage, "they don't go straight down through themselves."
There are a number of facts that have encouraged conspiracy theories about Tower Seven.
* Although its collapse potentially made architectural history, all of the thousands of tonnes of steel from the skyscraper were taken away to be melted down.
* The third tower was occupied by the Secret Service, the CIA, the Department of Defense and the Office of Emergency Management, which would co-ordinate any response to a disaster or a terrorist attack.
* The destruction of the third tower was never mentioned in the 9/11 Commission Report. The first official inquiry into Tower Seven by the Federal Emergency Management Agency was unable to be definitive about what caused its collapse.
* In May 2002 FEMA concluded that the building collapsed because intense fires had burned for hours, fed by thousands of gallons of diesel stored in the building. But it said this had "only a low probability of occurrence" and more work was needed.
As for punks getting thier ass handed to them, I watched your youtube videos and he sure doesn't get his ass handed to him, he raises a ton of points, none of which are disputed very well, imo.
I don't think that Tenet,
Rice, Powell et al. would have deliberately plotted the deaths of thousands
of Americans. I don't believe even Dick Cheney would have done that. And I
note that there has been no inexplicable wave of sudden deaths among junior
intelligence analysts in Washington.
ten thousand people were in on it. They had to be, or it couldn't have
worked. And more than five years later, not one of them has talked.
Nobody has got drunk and spilled their guts. Nobody has told their
spouse, who then blabbed. Not one of these ten thousand accomplices to
mass murder has yielded to the temptation for instant fame and great wealth
if only they blow the whistle on the greatest conspiracy in history. Even
the Mafia code of silence is nothing compared to this.
In normal times you wouldn't waste breath arguing with people who
fall for this kind of rubbish, but the makers of "Loose Change" claim that
their film has already been seen by over 100 million people, and looking at
my e-mail in-tray I believe them. It is a real problem, because by linking
their fantasies about 9/11 to the Bush administration's deliberate
deception of the American people in order to gain support for the invasion
of Iraq, they bring discredit on the truth and the nonsense alike.
You almost wonder if they are secretly working for the Bush
Number of Days after event that an independent investigation was ordered
Sinking of the Titanic--------------6
Events of 9/11------------------441
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