Life after peak oil

6 posts / 0 new
Last post
Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture
Life after peak oil


Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Peter Mansbridge hosted a segment last week on The National where he interviewed people who speculated what life would be like when it's no longer feasible for the average person to fly because jet fuel is so expensive, people have either sold off or deserted their cars and trucks, and rail travel is becoming more attractive especially between cities.

Now, here's something far beyond what Mansbridge was discussing: [url= and Actions for a Post-Carbon world[/url]


A few thoughts on Transition Initiatives

A Transition Town is a town that does as much and provides as much as it can from it's local area, but no, it is definitely not cut off from others - quite the contrary.

A TT does a SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) of its local region (however that is defined). It then works on developing the opportunities and strengths and protecting itself in its vulnerable areas.

The solutions are in the community and Transition Initiatives act as a catalyst to bring those ideas and solution to fruition.

I envisage our TTs here on the Coast growing as much food as we can locally, local doctors, nurses and a lot of alternative health people living and working in the community, local craftspeople who make a lot of the day to day things we need, local businesses and service providers, local economies, localised and decentralised education (like Cuba going from three universities to 50 purely because they needed to take the places to the people, not the other way round), local public space used creatively and functionally by the community.

People helping people more.

This is a transition phase - not the end product - we won't see that for a couple of generations I'd imagine. This is to wean us (very quickly) off our dependency and reliance on oil and fossil fuels.

It's the end of globalisation and we need to start to rebuild and rediscover localisation.

The other main role of TT is to develop trade options beyond the local areas. So, for example, here on the Sunny Coast we can swap subtropical fruit and veg, plus the grains we can grow here, and our unique crafts for others further south and north via our train line.


The idea of getting food from overseas, food that has tens of thousands of food miles attached will stop - the cost will make it so prohibitive.

We need local systems to pick up the slack and put nutritious, high quality, safe food on our tables.

Feeding the community will be the most important thing we can do right now - aside from providing clean safe drinking water and shelter.

If the population is worried about where their next meal is coming from or what they are going to feed their children - you have the makings of social chaos.

We need to act quickly and use successful models - eg Cuba, Totnes and places in Denmark I've heard of where a new development has a market garden/organic farm right in the heart of it. All the housing water and putrescible waste goes back into the farm - returning waste to the system and reusing it to grow food.


From the Transition Handbook

Started by Rob Hopkins and Ben Brangwyn in Totnes UK, Transition Initiatives is ‘an emerging and evolving approach to community-level sustainability.’

Transition Initiatives are based on four key assumptions;

1. [b]That life with dramatically lower energy consumption is inevitable, and that it’s better to plan for it than to be taken by surprise[/b]

2. That our settlements and communities presently lack the resilience to enable them to weather the severe energy shocks that will accompany peak oil

3. That we have to act collectively, and we have to act now

4. That by unleashing the collective genius of those around us to creatively and proactively design our energy descent, we can build ways of living that are more connected, more enriching and that recognise the biological limits of our planet

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture


3. That we have to act collectively, and we have to act now

Collectively in what sense?

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I'd assume by working on a consensus model and working with each other, rather than competitively. The author mentions examples of places he's seen. I'm surprised he mentioned, for example, Cuba, but not kibbutzes in Israel.

Adam T

Don't forget the dirigibles. I would expect them to make a big, and very welcome comeback. They can be and should be essentially fairly cheap ocean liners in the sky. They're not very useful for fast travel, but they certainly allow holiday travel to continue.

BTW, the National is available online.