thank you for a most interesting and in depth response to my article.

much to mull over there, which I will try to do. Forgive me if I miss a few salient points. My response will, as much as possible be broken down to cover it all.

The most critical point from above seems to be the ‘technology trap’ that so many people fall into.

most of what you say seems to pivot on that, — -the expectation that human ingenuity will somehow come up with answers, whether that be for energy depletion, climate change or overpopulation (the big 3)

It is a common error to imagine that technology will continue to deliver.

Few seem to understand that cheap surplus fungible energy from fossil fuels allowed us to have sophistaticated forms of technology

No form of technology can deliver cheap surplus fungible energy

The ouput of windfarms or nuclear power stations is electricity. Electricity is useless without the means to put it to work. Edison and Rutherford stood on Faraday’s shoulders. they found ways to make electricity work. There was no ‘’fundamental’’ discovery.

The fundamental discovery (apart from fire and pottery) was how to make cheap iron and steel in the 1700s

Bear in mind that Benz, the Wright Brothers, and the Apollo project had one common thread — exploding chemical compounds.

Which was the same as the Chinese used in fireworks 1000 years earlier. There was no ‘new technology’ only adaptation of existing. Da Vinci had figure out the principles of flight — he just didnt have an engine to make it work.

Our civilisation is based not on energy itself, but on the use of energy to convert one material form into another. Stop and think about that. Those materials are in severe depletion as much as oil is. Most of those materials have no substitutes. (probably none)

Technology cannot replace vital elements. Technology can allow extraction of more energy from every barrel of oil. It cannot put energy back in the barrel once it has been burned.

The above figures might be made to bend a little, but not by any significant amount the figures below certainly can’t

Civilised existence on our terms can be summed up in just six words:

Converting explosive forces into rotary motion

You will no doubt protest vehemently about that, but I assure you it is an absolute. Nothing about your life(unless you are a professional hermit) can escape that simple reality. I wish it were not so. Try to find something important in your life that doesn’t depend on that.

The tag refences are easily explained. The problems we face affect our culture, politics, life, leadership more than anything else.

I would have thought that was obvious. It is perhaps intellectually lazy not to recognise it.

co-author of The End of More, in paperback and kindle on Amazon email

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