Sage Against The Machine


Image Copyright : Christian Ecology Link

PRESS RELEASE : TV ECO CHAPLAIN TUMBLES HOUSE OF CREDIT CARDS

The Revd Peter Owen-Jones, the whole nation’s media chaplain, will be sharing from the heart at a Green Christian London conference ‘End of the Age of Thorns’ on 5th March 2011.

He will be opening up about a new relationship with money, and how we can survive the credit, jobs and services crunch by digging for our spiritual roots.

In his BBC TV odyssey, Britain’s favourite vicar tried living without his cheque book in the series ‘How to live a simple life’, and travelled the world to peer into the human soul in the fascinating ‘Around the World in 80 Faiths’.

Now he comes back down to Earth in central London, bringing his unique, accessible style of presentation, to share the good news of life after moneymaking, in an all-day conference organised by Christian Ecology Link.

The programme for the ‘End of the Age of Thorns’ features a wide range of talks and workshops asking questions about the ecology of money and life after mass marketing. What are the green shoots nurturing a new economics? Is there prosperity without growth? And can society grow up and leave consumerism behind?

“Christians ought to be distinctive as consumers. Our shopping bags should reflect our values.” (Professor Tim Cooper)

Sustainability expert Professor Tim Cooper will lead a group learning the fundamentals of Green Economics; Ashley Ralston will guide a process looking at shopping as if the planet mattered; and Ruth Jarman will host a workshop on greening up the day-to-day life of church communities.

“The church needs to consider why its members so readily succumb to high street temptations despite clear Biblical warnings about materialism. We cannot expect Christians to be immune from the psychological and socio-cultural pressures that lead to excessive consumption.” (Professor Tim Cooper)
___________________________________________________________

END OF THE AGE OF THORNS : SURVIVING CONSUMERISM

Christian Ecology Link Conference: Saturday 5 March 2011, 11am to 5pm, St John’s Church, Waterloo Road, London SE1 8TY (opposite the entrance to Waterloo station)

Come and explore spiritual roots for a new economics, for our own humanity and all life on Earth. Engage with Peter Owen-Jones on a new relationship with money and how we can challenge the consumerist age we live in.

“Christians are not prepared to tolerate economic injustice, and work hard to make the system better. But there is an elephant in the room. We take endless economic growth of the system for granted. And we wonder why we are failing to stem the extinction of fifty species every day, greenhouse gas emissions are out of control, and our children have becomes pawns of the market. Economic growth has become a cancer on the earth, and an abuse of the image of God in us.” (CEL Chairman, Paul Bodenham)

“God did not create a world with infinite resources for humankind to plunder. He created a world with finite resources for us to nurture. Some people argue that technological advance will enable consumerism to persist. We would do well to note that God also created people with finite minds. Perhaps people will not work out solutions in time. What then? We must address people’s values, not just their minds.” (Professor Tim Cooper)

More information
http://www.christian-ecology.org.uk/thorns
http://www.christian-ecology.org.uk/thorns.pdf
http://www.christian-ecology.org.uk/thorns-booking.pdf

Ticket prices vary
Non-CEL members £20
CEL members £15
£5 for the first 20 students aged under 25

Booking forms
http://www.christian-ecology.org.uk/thorns-booking.pdf

Telephone
0845 45 98 46 0

E-mail
bookings@christian-ecology.org.uk
info@christian-ecology.org.uk

Speaker biographies

Peter Owen-Jones is a long-time supporter of CEL and a popular speaker. You will probably have seen at least one of his fascinating BBC TV series: ‘How to live a simple life’, ‘Around the World in 80 Faiths’, and ‘Extreme Pilgrim’.

He is a Church of England vicar in a parish near Lewes in East Sussex; writer of several books including Letters from an Extreme Pilgrim (2010) and Psalm: The World’s Finest Soul Poetry in a Contemporary Idiom (2009); and founder of the Arbory Trust, the first Christian woodland burial site.

Tim Cooper is Professor of Sustainable Design and Consumption at Nottingham Trent University, a founder member of CEL and former CEL Chairman. He is author of “Longer lasting products; alternatives to the throwaway society” (2010) and “Green Christianity” (1990).

Workshop details

“Green Economics” : Tim Cooper will run two different sessions combining input and discussion. Both sessions will be self-contained so you can go to both, or just one.

“Shopping as if the planet mattered” : Bring your own ideas to share, led by Ashley Ralston, CEL trustee and a director of Better Tomorrows.

“Greening the church in daily life” : Eco-congregations are not just for Sundays. They should give every member the chance to change their life. Come and discuss ideas and experiences that can help people start on a journey of a lifetime, including CEL’s ecocell programme, led by Ruth Jarman, CEL trustee and climate change campaigner.

“We should be no less distinctive in our consumption ethics as in our sexual ethics. Christianity is as much about showing distinctive love to third world suppliers by insisting on ‘fair trade’ goods as it is about showing distinctive love to our husbands and wives by being faithful.” (Professor Tim Cooper)

“Jesus was forthright about the ‘deceit of wealth’, and yet we’ve fallen for this one big time. There is an alternative, but like any therapy, the treatment will be painful. A lot of people want to be the place where that healing makes a start, but don’t know how. That is why we have launched ‘ecocell’, to bring people together to make a journey in discipleship to find freedom, for themselves, for society and, we hope, for the earth.” (CEL Chairman, Paul Bodenham)

Glimpsing the Future

Can we glimpse the future of energy ?

Ambient, sustainable energy is all around us, and sooner or
later we will find the ways to make use of it for the good of all.

The following is an appropriately edited transcript of a
conversation on the Claverton Energy Research Group
forum online, and was written by Nick Balmer, a consultant
in renewable energy.
__________________________________________________________

…The huge scale of the possible changes for all concerned is
causing all of the current Titans in the [energy] industry to deploy
the full force of the media [and their] PR [public relations] in an
attempt to manipulate the public and policy towards their own way
of thinking, or in such a way as to protect their own vested interests.

The great thing is that these issues are being aired out in the open,
and groups like [Claverton Energy Research Group forum] allow
people with knowledge of these affairs to debate these issues openly.

The big problem is that each of us has only a very detailed
understanding of some small fraction of the total issue.

Most of the public and government only has a very slight knowledge
of the total issue, and has had only limited access to ways to find out
in detail what is going on.

As Egypt is demonstrating today, everybody now has a voice and as
Wikileaks shows, sooner or later everything will come out into the
open.

All of us are struggling to come to terms with this explosion of
access to knowledge.

It is quite clear that lots of bubbles are being burst as a result of
the Global Financial implosion and the huge expansion in available
knowledge.

Just as banking and property has been shown to be an unaffordable
Ponzi scheme and to be vastly over-inflated, UK energy policy is now
coming under huge scrutiny.

We can now compare our energy systems with other countries.

Due to the huge geological accident of fate, since the 1700’s in coal,
and 1970’s in oil and gas, we have been extremely fortunate in being
able to live way beyond the lifestyle standards of most of the World.

We have not had to adapt.

Other countries that didn’t have this advantage had to change over
recent decades.

Places like Denmark, Austria, Germany [and so on] have made huge
changes because they had less energy from fossil resources.

Now we have reached the peak or crunch point, we find ourselves well
behind those countries that had to adapt earlier.

Everybody is concentrating on the Capital cost of deploying per
MW [megawatt] and overlooks the cost of fuels.

The cost of fuels over time is massively more important than the
CAPEX [capital expenditure on investment].

So even if windfarms cost 20 times per MW or GW [gigawatt] more to
build than nuclear or coal or gas, in the scheme of things,
[wind power] is always going to win, because the fuel is free and
unlimited for centuries to come.

Similarly [solar power technologies], or even more effective,
household insulation and cutting energy use.

And yet the media and government are blinded by the barrage of PR
and media from the energy vested interests who are working with
every muscle to stop this coming out into the open.

I often meet financiers in my work trying to promote and support AD
[anaerobic digestion of biological waste for the production of
renewable methane], biomass, solar and wind projects.

I am always struggling to prove to them that I have an offtake [return
on investment] and the fuel supply. This is often really hard to do
[but] I only have to do this for seven to 12 years to make my business
cases stack up.

I was really depressed at the end of one such presentation and
discussion, when one broadly sympathetic banker who had turned me
down said that he was having even worse problems with largescale
energy projects.

How do you predict the price and supply of coal forward for 25 years
or more ?

It has jumped 17% in recent months.

How do you prove that you are going to have offtake for huge power
stations in future years ?

Demand dropped 8% in 2009.

How do you raise the equity or debt for a billion [pound] project when
banks don’t want to lend more than £30 million each ? Imagine how
many banks that would take ?

We have reached a tipping point in our economy, sustainability and
future outlook.

Yes, the existing mega-power companies are fighting as hard as
Mubarak today to hold onto power, but they represent the past just
as surely as he does.

Those companies can rejuvenate themselves, unlike the Egyptian
President.

If they don’t, there are an increasingly large number of smaller and
more active players coming into the market.

The average household pays somewhere around £1,300 a year for
its heating and lighting.

The companies that come forward with a way to do that for £1,000 is
going to capture the market very quickly.

I have friends in Austria who only pay 65 Euros for services that I
pay £1,400 for.

They do this through insulation, triple glazing, solar and biomass energy.

Most [UK] households have less than £400 per year discretionary
disposable income. This prevents them making changes to their houses
they desperately want and know they need to make.
This can
drop their energy demands hugely.

If somebody can unlock that Gordian Knot the benefits would be
enormous as there are something like 27 million households.

At a time when household debt is at an all-time high, incomes are
shrinking, and 40% live on ether government salaries, state
pensions or benefits.

Energy is a very high part of these households’ outgoings – if you
pay £1,300 a year and your house only brings in £11,000 to £20,000
per year.

A 50% increase in the £1,300 could bring great distress, and
possibly even civil unrest here.

The increases fossil power [companies] need to make their systems
bankable will increase energy bills. This will feed straight through into
government liabilities because 40% of us live on government payouts.

If government can drop the cost of heating and lighting quite easily
by £100 to £500 per household per year while at the same time
provide employment for hundreds of thousands of White Van men
cutting energy uses, doesn’t this make far more sense than building
unsustainable power stations that will have to be [bankrolled] by the
government, who will then have to buy back electricity at a price our
communities cannot stand ?

Project a similar calculation onto transport fuels and you get even
greater problems.

At $80 a barrel [of oil] industry is shrinking and relatively few
renewable fuel business cases work. At $100 a barrel most renewable
fuels can compete.

At $120 a barrel almost any alternative beats oil, and that is before
you start to look at issues like fuel security and the environment.

Although the battle is one of David and Goliath, or the Dinosaur and
those early mammals, between the new energy industries and the
existing vested energy industries, [it] has only one outcome.

It is only a matter of the co-lateral damage along the way.

Like Mubarak, it is clear they must go. Are they going to go
gracefully, or are they going to smash the place up first ?

Nick Balmer
Renewable Energy Consultant

American Full Spectrum Dominance

The documentary evidence shows that America’s business interests often outweigh its political progress. Yet it’s perhaps more concerning that, increasingly, corporate America is at risk of damaging good environmental governance.

With all the talk of free markets in international trade, the Coalition Government in the United Kingdom has felt the pressure to open up the back door to American energy businesses, whose highly-paid sales representatives in slick suits want us to buy their dirty energy projects – just take a look at the upcoming UK Energy Bill and its proposals for Electricity Market Reform.

American companies seem poised to sweep in and take all our public non-subsidy “support” for building new nuclear power plants. Viewers of a sensitive political disposition should look away now as this is a Wikileak :-

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/wikileaks-files/london-wikileaks/8305283/UK-RAMPING-UP-ON-NUCLEAR-POWER-BUT-CHALLENGES-REMAIN.html

The country that brought you the engineering industry that brought you the giant Gulf of Mexico giant oil spill now wants to bring you unsafe deepwater drilling in Britain’s Continental Shelf – and the UK’s new Energy Bill would let them do that without demonstrating any learning from the BP April 2010 fiasco :-

http://act.greenpeace.org.uk/ea-campaign/…

There’s lots of talk in the energy sector and the financial markets about the American shale gas miracle “gamechanger” and how it can be replicated in Europe and across the world, and not enough discussion about the environmental dangers :-

http://www.tyndall.ac.uk/shalegasreport

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-12190810

It’s good to talk about local environmental damage from “unconventional” gas, but what’s not being discussed so widely is that these “new” resources of Natural Gas aren’t really very green, and neither are the “traditional” resources – in some cases they’re not much better than coal :-

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=climate-benefits-natural-gas-overstated

http://www.propublica.org/article/natural-gas-and-coal-pollution-gap-in-doubt

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/25/natural-gas-clean_n_813750.html

We know that the Americans always seek to protect the interests of American-owned businesses – and we know they do that for the best of intentions – to keep America wealthy (except it’s really only a few people in America that have any wealth, but anyway…)

Yet I think there should be a limit to how far we have to bend over backwards to accommodate their needs for economic recovery.

To export all their dirty energy technology to Europe is just not helpful, and I think we should say no, no, no.

Who Planned Pipeline Attack ?

[ UPDATE 3 : Israel has said it has already prepared for just such an Egyptian disruption scenario, and won’t suffer from shortages of gas… http://www.jpost.com/MiddleEast/Article.aspx?id=206940 ]

[ UPDATE 2 : The Jerusalem Post says that it was reported that explosives were detonated at the terminal… http://www.jpost.com/MiddleEast/Article.aspx?id=206940. Why does the Jerusalem Post article contain a history of gas production in the region ? Part of the gas that comes through Egypt has come from Gazan wells http://www.joabbess.com/2010/08/01/natural-gaza-3/. If that supply fails, then countries round about will have to buy their gas from Israel’s new wells… Israel will probably blame Iran for the Egyptian gas terminal explosion http://blogs.forbes.com/christopherhelman/2011/02/05/egypt-pipeline-explosion-cuts-gas-supply-to-israel/. Apparently the gas supply to Israel may not have been damaged http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-02-05/egypt-gas-pipeline-feeding-israel-explodes-in-sinai-desert-arabiya-says.html, but they’ve turned the taps off anyway, as a precautionary measure http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/crisis-in-egypt/pipeline-blast-in-egypt-shuts-off-gas-flow-to-jordan-israel/article1895902/?cmpid=rss1 ]

[ UPDATE : We now learn it was not an attack after all… http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/egypt/8305962/Egypt-crisis-Sinai-explosion-blamed-on-gas-leak.html. Notice the propaganda – we are reminded in the video report that there may be dark fundamentalist forces at work, even whilst being told that this was not in fact the case.]

An unidentified group has taken advantage of all the turmoil in Egypt, gone undercover, and attacked a gas pipeline, which means that supplies to politically moderate Jordan (and the more hardline Syria) will be cut off.

Who planned this ? It’s probably too early to say, but I can think of several possible answers to the question, and none of them are pretty.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5huw-ts1Q5jlhNQ2IOUlli6gjl5gw?docId=CNG.36fe9f8bbc762c3ed9f469e5f80934c5.8f1

“Saboteurs attack Egypt gas pipeline to Jordan”

http://af.reuters.com/article/investingNews/idAFJOE71407020110205

“Jordan gas supplies to be halted a week after blast”

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704843304576125510103424894.html

“Egypt Gas Pipeline Attacked”

http://edition.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/africa/02/05/egypt.pipeline/?hpt=T2

“Gas pipeline to Jordan, Syria set ablaze in Egypt…Unless the pipe is repaired quickly, it could become a big problem for Jordan, a country already spending heavily in fuel subsidies, a Jordanian senior official said….”

Market Tinkering

The Conservative and Liberal Democrat Coalition Government in the United Kingdom have several competing interests to juggle when it comes to the electricity generation industry.

Any proposed tinkering in the electricity market will need to show it still promotes competition (even though new entrants will probably complain they can’t compete in auctions), even as it guarantees safe and stable power supplies, even as it needs to make sure consumers don’t get ripped off.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change have published a clearly-written consultation document on their proposals for an Electricity Market Reform (EMR), detailing various methods of intervening to ensure long-term objectives on carbon emissions and energy security :-

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/consultations/emr/emr.aspx

I’ve been reading some really helpful commentary on the system-wide effects of these proposals :-

http://www.decc.gov.uk/assets/decc/Consultations/emr/1043-emr-analysis-policy-options.pdf

http://www.parliamentarybrief.com/2011/01/thumbs-up-a-little-early-for-that-mr-huhne#all

So far, my conclusion is that the net effect of these proposals will be to make the electricity generators feel secure about future earnings.

I’m not convinced that anything I’ve read so far will help energy supply companies feel willing to leap the expensive investment hurdle to ensure the UK gets new low carbon power plants.

I’m not even sure if the carbon and power pricing described will deter companies from dirty power generation and direct them towards new low carbon investment.

When I happened on the levelised cost of power in the main DECC analysis document, I came to a very pragmatic conclusion :-

http://www.decc.gov.uk/assets/decc/Consultations/emr/1041-electricity-market-reform-condoc.pdf

Figure 2 (see top) shows that FOAK (first of a kind) new nuclear reactor plant designs (which is what we are told we will be getting in the UK) are probably going to yield similar unit electricity price values to Onshore Wind Power and Combined Cycle Gas Turbine (CCGT) plant using Natural Gas feedstock.

My question is : why do we need to intervene with the electricity market to incentivise low carbon generation if the cheapest technologies are the low carbon options anyway ? (Yes, I’ve deliberately forgotten to discuss Carbon Capture and Storage).

My second question is : are the financial instruments proposed for the electricity market simply a sop to the electricity generators to leverage investment in new and efficient low carbon power stations ? Come and invest in new power generation in Great Britain and see your earnings stable (or rising) !

And my third question is this : don’t the NIMBY campaigns against Onshore Wind Power realise their success means that the overall cost of electricity to the consumers will rise significantly as wind power has to move offshore ?

My conclusion is : it would be far cheaper simply to instruct the largely publicly owned banks to make investment finance available, but only for low carbon technologies and forget about trying to maintain the facade of a free market.

Power supply is virtually a monopoly – and the State is bound to maintain supply – DECC have even got proposals on the table in their main Energy Bill to buy up any power companies that fail…yet another bailout !

Britain’s Favourite TV Vicar Spills Happy News

Image Copyright : Christian Ecology Link

Intimate and life-changing revelations are anticipated with baited breath at the Green Christian London conference “End of the Age of Thorns” on 5th March 2011.

The Revd Peter Owen-Jones, the whole nation’s media chaplain, will be sharing from the heart, opening up about a new relationship with money, and how we can survive the credit, jobs and services crunch by digging for our spiritual roots.

In his BBC TV odyssey, Britain’s favourite vicar tried living without his cheque book in the series “How to live a simple life”, and travelled the world to peer into the human soul in the fascinating “Around the World in 80 Faiths”.

Now he comes back down to Earth in central London, bringing his unique, accessible style of presentation, to share the good news of life after moneymaking, in an all-day conference organised by Christian Ecology Link.

The programme for the “End of the Age of Thorns” features a wide range of talks and workshops asking questions about the ecology of money and life after mass marketing. What are the green shoots nurturing a new economics ? Is there prosperity without growth ? And can society grow up and leave consumerism behind ?

Sustainability expert Professor Tim Cooper will lead a group learning the fundamentals of Green Economics; Ashley Ralston will guide a process looking at shopping as if the planet mattered; and Ruth Jarman will host a workshop on greening up the day-to-day life of church communities.

___________________________________________________________

PRESS RELEASE

END OF THE AGE OF THORNS: SURVIVING CONSUMERISM

Christian Ecology Link Conference: Saturday 5 March 2011, 11am to 5pm, St John’s Church, Waterloo Road, London SE1 8TY (opposite the entrance to Waterloo station)

More information
http://www.christian-ecology.org.uk/thorns
http://www.christian-ecology.org.uk/thorns.pdf
http://www.christian-ecology.org.uk/thorns-booking.pdf

Come and explore spiritual roots for a new economics, for our own humanity and all life on Earth. Engage with Peter Owen-Jones on a new relationship with money and how we can challenge the consumerist age we live in.

Ticket prices vary
Non-CEL members £20
CEL members £15
£5 for the first 20 students aged under 25

Booking forms
http://www.christian-ecology.org.uk/thorns-booking.pdf

Telephone
0845 45 98 46 0

E-mail
bookings@christian-ecology.org.uk
info@christian-ecology.org.uk

Speaker biographies

Peter Owen-Jones is a long-time supporter of CEL and a popular speaker. You will probably have seen at least one of his fascinating BBC series: ‘How to live a simple life’, ‘Around the World in 80 Faiths’, and ‘Extreme Pilgrim’.

He is a Church of England vicar in a parish near Lewes in East Sussex; writer of several books including Letters from an Extreme Pilgrim (2010) and Psalm: The World’s Finest Soul Poetry in a Contemporary Idiom (2009); and founder of the Arbory Trust, the first Christian woodland burial site.

Tim Cooper is Professor of Sustainable Design and Consumption at Nottingham Trent University, a founder member of CEL and former CEL Chair. He is author of “Longer lasting products; alternative to the throwaway society” (2010) and “Green Christianity” (1990).

Workshop details

“Green Economics” : Tim Cooper will run two different sessions combining input and discussion. Both sessions will be self-contained so you can go to both, or just one.

“Shopping as if the planet mattered” : Bring your own ideas to share, led by Ashley Ralston, CEL trustee and a director of Better Tomorrows.

“Greening the church in daily life” : Eco-congregations are not just for Sundays. They should give every member the chance to change their life. Come and discuss ideas and experiences that can help people start on a journey of a lifetime, including CEL’s ecocell programme, led by Ruth Jarman, CEL trustee and climate change campaigner.

It’s not greed…

Image Credit : G. William Domhoff

In conversation yesterday evening somebody summarised the behaviour of banks and the energy industry as “greedy”, but I simply could not agree.

“It’s not greed”, I said, “most people are just trying to make a living.”

The corporations have an obligation to make profits for their shareholders, business managers have to be pragmatic, governments have to negotiate compromises and consumers are just looking to make the best use of their cash.

This is how we find ourselves locked into a vicious cycle of energy waste, through the production and use of cheap fossil fuels.

Fossil fuels are so cheap, nobody can spare the investment budget to make vehicles and power generation more efficient. Natural Gas is so relatively inexpensive that it’s cheaper to heat leaky homes than insulate them. Petroleum is so cheap (even with the rising global trade price and proposed increased taxes in the UK) that a high proportion of its energy value is wasted.

“It’s not greed,” I said, “look at who owns the wealth. The overwhelming proportion of people don’t have any control. They’re just trying to get by.”

To talk of “greed” anthropomorphises the machine of the economy, imbues it with a human emotion where it has none. To say that bankers are “greedy”, or that corporations and their Chief Executive Officers are “evil” entirely misses the point. Almost everybody is employed by somebody else, and has to follow instructions.

Even High Net Worth Individuals are under pressure to respond to their “electorates”, those who consume their intellectual property rights.

However, “just following orders” is no excuse to let people off the hook when it comes to carbon emissions, just like it is no excuse for war crimes.

But it’s not “greed”.

That would imply guilt, but guilt is not a lever that can be used successfully to correct excess carbon emissions.

Image Credit : Make Wealth History

Ethical Investment

I met several people in the finance-with-conscience crowd the other week, when I went for a spot of champers and Marmite soldiers at the House of Commons for National Ethical Investment Week.

I learned about various views on social and positive impact investment, and about elements of the Coalition Government’s “Big Society” and the proposed Green Investment Bank.

Ethical Investment appears to have come a long way since I put some money into a Fair Trade company many moons ago, where I knew I would never see a dividend, or even be able to sell the shares at some point.

Grown up people in sharp suits and big name frocks now do moral banking, and often reap a healthy return on their investment – “doing well” as well as “doing good”, as Adam Ognall of UK Sustainable Investment and Finance says.

I was challenged to think about what faith communities do with their money around a month ago, all precipitated by a conversation I had with Martin Palmer of the Alliance of Conservation and Religions, and then I heard something at a recent meeting that caused me to investigate a little… Continue reading Ethical Investment

Post Carbon : Bleak House

A missive from Jeremy Leggett received via e-mail :-

=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=

Subject: New oil-crisis warning from British companies
Date: Sun, 21 Nov 2010
From: Jeremy Leggett

Folks

This week the UK Industry Taskforce on Peak Oil and Energy Security published a short update of its second report of February this year.

In the February report, we offered evidence for our concern that global oil production will begin to fall, against rising demand – and general expectation – by 2015 at the latest.

In the update, we argue that inevitable restrictions in deepwater oil production round the world, in the shakeout from the BP spill, has made our warning all the more pressing.

If you haven’t seen it, you can link to a pdf of the (4 page only) report and selected bits of the media coverage, off the home page of my website below.

The triple crunch log on the website is updated completely through 3rd November, and only partially beyond that. I am behind for day-job reasons, but will catch up in the month ahead. The financial-, climate- and energy crises all involve denialist group-think, or so I and my particular tribe of group-thinkers believe.

Yet the log of unfolding events shows the respective dramas ticking along like the three unexploded bombs they all are, for those with a mind to see.

For example, in finance we wait to see if fraud in the packaging of mortgage-backed securities will bring another wave of horror down on the banks, and hence on the rest of us.

In climate, America has elected a Congress where a blocking majority cannot or will not understand the dire warnings of climate scientists.

In energy, the IEA’s chief economist has added his name to the list professing that the age of cheap oil is over, and – as I have said – a cross section of UK industry believes a global oil crisis is coming, within five years.

We have to find a way, somehow, to defuse all three bombs.

Any one of them going off can ruin what remains of the vocational watches of the good folk on this e-mail list, and make our children and grandchildren really very irritated with us.

…I had a huge e-mail in-box after the last missive, concerning investment in coal. It seems that there are a lot of capitalists out there who have grave misgivings about the direction unreconstructed modern capitalism is taking.

I shall endeavour to write an article on that theme, without of course betraying any confidences, in the run up to the Cancun climate summit in a few weeks.

Best to all

J

Jeremy Leggett, Executive Chairman, Solarcentury
http://www.jeremyleggett.net for a log of the energy crunch as it unfolds

=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=

Interestingly, the BBC did not ignore the update of the UK Industry Taskforce on Peak Oil and Energy Security :-

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-11781533