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Articles: powering down (12)

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Energy: Thriving On Five Percent?

The modern city has been shaped by the availability of cheap oil and resources, and plentiful credit.

Muddling Through and Unsung Heroes

Our future will involve a lot of just "muddling through" as our complex society starts to fall apart, and we must stay away from the "strong men" who will offer appealingly simple answers to complex problems.

When cow love meets car love

For an anthropologist like myself raised on stories of the Nuer and Dinka (and the other tribes in the region), the latest news from the Sudan is jarring.

Powerdown: Let's talk about it

Climate change is advancing at an incredible speed. We know we should do something, but we lack the political will to do what it takes to hold it to 2°C.

Care for the earth

Are values more important during times of scarcity, and how must our values change if we are to survive?

What If?

As I walked up the hill this morning to work a few hours in my family’s half-acre urban farm, my head was sore from a stampede of news: Syria in the crosshairs of the White House; economies swaying precariously like ten-foot stacks of Jenga blocks ready to fall; the open wound at …

To power up or power down? That is the question

Recently I read that our challenge in the twenty-first century is to triple global energy demand “so that the world’s poorest can enjoy modern living standards, while reducing our carbon emissions from energy production to zero”.

The speech Obama needed to make

I’ve stayed away from politics pointedly in posts, because voting for either party is still just voting for growth, with different labels applied. I do not believe that the current corporate giveaway that we call a political system is fixable unless we elect a leader who is ecologically …

Can we live again in 1964's energy world?

We must engineer a return to that era's lower usage, says expert Vaclav Smil. For nearly 40 years now, Smil, a Czech émigré and polymath, has studied the world's energy systems. He grew up in the political darkness of the Soviet Empire and has matured in the moral emptiness of its …

Starting down: seven deadly sins

For those of us who live in countries where we use many fossil fuels, we have been shielded from the consequences of living badly. But that age is ending. Now that the Mayan Baktun 13 calendar has passed, we begin the era of the Gaian calendar. We “will eventually have to reduce either our …

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