We at Democracy for Snohomish County are very pleased to see that Jackie's voice has been amplified today with an Op-Ed in the pages of the Everett Herald. Parts of that Op-Ed are reprinted here with the express consent (and encouragement) of the author.
Facing reality: Oil supply isn't bottomless
By Jackie Minchew
"Peak oil doesn't fit comfortably into a nutshell. First it is necessary to understand that the industrial revolution was fueled by carbon-based energy: first coal and, later, crude oil and natural gas (fossil fuels.) With the industrial revolution came phenomenal technological advances, some of which contributed to the so-called population explosion. (The population of the planet has more than doubled during this writer's lifetime.) Examples of these technological advances include tractors and other farm implements as well as fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides made from fossil fuels. With increased farm output, it became possible to feed the expanding population.
Also contributing to the population expansion were technological advances in medicine, many tied to fossil fuels, especially pharmaceuticals..."
..."In every case, there comes a time when the extraction rate peaks and begins an irreversible decline. So it is for the planet as a whole.
Various forecasts for the timing of the global peak in oil extraction range from now to 40 or 50 years in the future. These are based largely on reported reserves, which are widely believed to be inflated. The German-based Energy Watch Group recently issued a report based on production data, which placed the global peak in 2006 rather than some time in the future. If this is true, then the time to prepare is past and the only remaining option is to decide how to respond. (The Hirsch Report, prepared for the U.S. Energy Department and released in February 2005, called for a crash program beginning 20 years before the peak. Oops!)..."
And he concludes:
"...Fortunately, there are some pretty good people working on practical (if not always palatable) responses to the expected difficulties. Among these are the above-mentioned Richard Heinberg, a brilliant man named Colin Campbell, and my personal hero in the field, Julian Darley, founder and director of the Post Carbon Institute (PCI.) Through its five initiatives (Global Public Media, Relocalization Network, Post Carbon Cities, Oil Depletion Protocol and Energy Farms), PCI is actively seeking and aggressively advocating for well-reasoned responses to the dramatically changing energy environment..."
We applaud Jackie for an excellent explanation of the subject and, just as enthusiastically, applaud the Herald for providing this platform for Jackie to advance this issue.
As mentioned above, Democracy for Snohomish County was proud to bring Julian Darley to Everett in August of 2006. With great thanks to Ed Mays at Pirate TV in Seattle, we are able to offer a DVD of the Darley presentation from that event for a nominal fee for reproduction and shipping cost. If you would like a copy of this important presentation, please send a check (made out to Democracy for Snohomish County) for $5.00 to Democracy for Snohomish County - PO Box 7005 Lynnwood, WA 98046. Please include your mailing address. Allow 2 to 3 weeks for delivery.
Chair, Democracy for Snohomish County