Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The Grid is the Worst Mistake in the History of the Human Race

We all know Jared Diamond's famous essay arguing for the invention of agriculture as the worst mistake of mankind. But after listening to Gail Tverberg's last conversation with James Howard Kunstler and reading her recent essay on electricity, I've come to the conclusion that the electric grid is an even worse mistake.

KunstlerCast 271 – A Conversation with Gail Tverberg of OurFiniteWorld.com

Our Electricity Problem: Getting the Diagnosis Correct

Livet forandrer seg når folk får strøm
It will be exciting to see how it plays out, and then horrible when the electric grid goes down due to lack of spare parts because international trade has ceased and we die. - Eivind Berge
What keeps our civilisation together is the electric grid. Built into the electric grid is our financial system, our entire infrastructure, our food supply and the energy we need for preparing our food and heat our homes. The problem is that the grid is an extremely fragile system and is dependent on a constant flow of cheap oil to operate. This flow is slowing down now, and there will not be any energy to operate all the vehicles, helicopters and equipment needed to keep the grid functioning. And the flow of spare parts will stop as well. Gail Tverberg gives us a maximum of two years to benefit from the grid after the financial institutions fail.

Some compare the electric grid with the reinforcement of concrete, and that it is what keeps our civilization together. And it did so for a while. The problem is that we used very bad sand for the concrete, sand from the sea shores. And this sand is full of salt, which makes the  reinforcement to rust. This salt is of course an allegory for debt!

The world will become much more beautiful when the electric grid fails. But there will be very few people around to experience our beautiful new world, if anyone at all.

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