I remember talking to someone in APES (I will not say who) about Peak Oil. Their response was something along the lines of, "But we have 40 years..." I disagree with this statement (and I will explain my sources shortly) but the subtext is that we will "fix" Peak Oil later. Similarly, global warming deniers will say that we "need more study" or we should "wait and see" what the consequences will be.
I find it funny that we believe that we can click the snooze button on the alarm that some are sounding about these issues. Peak Oil, like global warming, needs to be dealt with before it is a problem just like ANY OTHER PROBLEM.
Our counter-terrorism strategy was to wait until it was a problem. It became a problem on 9/11.
Our strategy on debt was to wait until it was a problem. It became a problem when our overextended economy began to implode.
Similarly, if we wait until Peak Oil "becomes a problem" in order to deal with it, we will be dealing with a world of economic and political consequences that will put our current economic crisis to shame. If we wait for global warming to "become a problem" in an obvious way (until there are no doubts), we will leave this planet an inhospitable place for billions of people.
How much time should we wait before dealing with ecological problems? Until we discover the problem? Until there is NO disagrement? Until damage has already begun to happen? Until cost-effective solutions are independiently developed? How does the precautionary principle fit into all of this?
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