Arithmetic, Population, and Energy

On America’s obsession with economic growth, the dangers of population growth at the local, regional, national and international levels, and the alarming rate at which our resource consumption is accelerating: Albert Bartlett, retired Physics prof. at U of Colorado-Boulder, explains in a 1995 lecture why we have some hard decisions to make about immigration, birth rates, war, disease, death and destruction.

Playlist at Youtube

Here’s the 1st video of the 8 part series:

He raises some interesting points that, if true, will have a deep impact on Tlingit Country. If we are indeed faced with peak oil in this generation and a population that doubles every 70 years, then what are the consequences for the temperate rain forest we call home? Modern industrial economies, particularly the US, have demonstrated that they are willing to extract resources at alarming rates. When the coal and oil runs out, how long will the Tongass National Forest survive before it is cut down to meet the Nations energy needs? When industrial agriculture runs out of the fossil fuels that make fertilizer and power tractors, plows and combines, how long until our salmon runs are fished to extinction? What of the water needs of the millions upon millions of people living in the arid regions of the American west and southwest? How long until people look with a thirsty eye at our abundant water?

Our people have witnessed change at a pace that few people in the history of man kind have seen. Within a few generations we transitioned from a sedentary hunter-gather society through the industrial revolution to the modern age. We may see more change in the next generation, yet, it may be even most destructive change yet.

About Vince

I am a Tlingit, born and raised in Tlingit Country, and a proud member of the Tlingit Nation.
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2 Responses to Arithmetic, Population, and Energy

  1. Pingback: Arithmetic, Population, and Energy | American Indian/Alaska Native – Attack The System

  2. Albert says:

    I agree and just wonder how long it will take before the teetse fly experiment we all learn about in high school or earlier really takes effect. I personally do not believe that people with money are not already thinking about it now. We do have to be prepared for the worst, but I still have to believe in the best.

    I have not personally stockpiled anything. Maybe I should go out any buy a 50lb bag or rice and 50lb bag ow beans!

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