1976 Edison Electric Institute pamphlet

I love old information.

Rather, I love the way old information is presented, for the very act of noticing that a document is old has littler to do with its content than the presentation, the words, the pictures, the style, the medium.

In 1976, the Viking 2 spacecraft landed on Mars, and Apple Computer was formed.

In 1976, the gold price hit a bottom of $102 per ounce, oil averaged $12.37 a barrel, and the United States celebrated its 200th birthday.

And in that year, M. King Hubbert, who in 1956 correctly predicted the peak of oil production in the US would be between 1965 and 1970 (peak production in the lower 48 occurred 1970/1), made a video clip explaining his idea of Peak Oil to the public.

Also that year, Edison Electric Institute, Inc, the Association of Shareholder Owned Electric Companies in the US, put out a pamphlet describing the changes that would be occurring in our lives due to the depletion of fossil fuels.

Entitled The Transitional Storm -Or The Changing Energy Epoch, the four-page pamphlet has a brief history of human energy use, describing how each energy epoch has transitioned from one type of fuel to another somewhat smoothly, meaning that historically, humanity has been able to discover new forms of power generation and fuel before the previous technologies fuel ran out.

In other words, we found coal before all the trees were burned. We found oil before all the coal was burned.

However, they go on to say, “Today it is different.”

The fossil-fuel epoch and the next age are not completely interlocking. There is some overlap, but there also is a large supply-demand gap, and we call this gap a “transitional storm”-you’ve heard it called an “Energy Crisis.

The essay quotes M. King Hubbert as saying that a full 80% of the total global supply of fossil fuel will have been consumed in “the incredibly short period of only 300 years.”

In other words, the Oil Age is on the down-slope.

But there is hope for the future. According to Edward Teller, the laws of thermodynamics say our energy sources are virtually inexhaustible. From page 2,

As Edward Teller puts it, “Thermodynamics teaches us that unlimited energy exists. What is missing is the practical way to use this energy efficiently.” In other words, the shortage is not of energy or of fuel, but of conversion technology-the “smarts” to convert available fuel into useful energy.

The pamphlet notes the various forms of energy we could transition to, including wind, solar, and hydro, as well as nuclear fission and fusion.

The fuel for fusion, deuterium, gets special note.

Interestingly, there is only one two-hundredths of an ounce of deuterium in a gallon of water. Yet if all the energy could be extracted from that small fraction of an ounce, it would be the equivalent of 300 gallons of high-test gasoline.

The essay also make the claim that there’s enough deuterium in the oceans to last 500 million years.

Thus our problem is not shortage of fuel, it’s a crisis of conversion of energy.

Edison Electric puts the responsibility for transition squarely on the shoulders of the public who must, as consumers of electricity, “support and encourage research and development that will lead to new and improved conversion technologies.”

But most importantly, they must take their position seriously-as seriously as they expect the government and the utility companies to take theirs.

I wonder, under what circumstances, I would get a warning like this from a power company today? Thirty-five years later, “the transitional storm” is upon us, and thirty-five years later, the public has still not been educated enough to take this situation seriously.

As oil prices continued to drop into the 1980s, the transitional storm was forgotten, and we built more infrastructure based on fossil fuels. We didn’t prepare for “a new energy epoch” like we should have, and now, we’re going to have to scramble to develop solutions fast.

What is the solution?

For ultra-clean high energy-density power, there is only one choice, low-energy nuclear reactions, or cold fusion, using deuterium as a fuel.

Nuclear fission power plants that exist today are dirty and dangerous. They take a decade to build with enormous costs financially and environmentally.

Meanwhile, conventional hot nuclear fusion has not advanced enough to be a viable alternative. It requires a complex engineering structure to potentially provide a centralized power source with a high capital cost.

Cold fusion does not produce radioactive waste, and is decentralized, with fuel available to anyone who can access water. The nuclear fusion reaction occurs inside a small piece of metal, giving a super-high-energy density per unit volume of metal.

This technology has been neglected for the past two decades with 0% of the funding that hot fusion has received from the Department of Energy, and we need to remedy this immediately.

The essay ends with Dr. Glenn Seaborg, a Nobel prize-winning nuclear chemist and advocate for the peaceful use of nuclear power (albeit the fission kind), though no friend to cold fusion:

The wise use of energy,” says Dr. Seaborg, “can restore nature and rejuvenate man. It can help us to turn green again much of the desert wasteland that was once natural gardens. It can help us clean up our man-made environment and rebuild the lives of men and the lands and cities they inhabit. It can help us build the foundation for lasting peace on this planet. And it can give us the means to explore beyond this planet-to open new frontiers to man, physical frontiers and those of the mind and spirit.

In short, the future of energy is the future of man. Without it we become nothing. With it, we become whatever we wish to be.

Click the images below to open a .pdf of each page of this document in a new tab.

And check out the graphic on page 3 “How Man Has Spent His Time”. Only 10% of Industrial man’s time was spent working???

How things have changed… Got to get to work! Bye!

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Edison Electric pamphlet 1976 page 1

Edison Electric pamphlet 1976 page 2

Edison Electric pamphlet 1976 page 3

Edison Electric pamphlet 1976 page 4

On the downslope of peak oil, cold fusion remains hope for the future

Why is LENR research so important?

Because the world energy outlook portends decreased oil supplies in the near future. In fact, the International Energy Agency has finally publicly accepted the Peak scenario for conventional oil, and now claims it already happened in 2006.

What this means is that the easy oil has been found, and what remains in the ground is more difficult to retrieve, more dangerous to extract, and more expensive to process.

Think of deepwater oil and the BP catastrophe. Think of tar sands and oil shale and the tremendous ecological devastation wrought in its extraction, including the enormous amount of water needed to process this unconventional oil.

Here’s a graph from the annual World Energy Outlook 2010 published recently by the International Energy Agency.
Chris Martenson, of Energybulletin.net has written a summary of the implications of this report that is sobering and well worth reading.

Alternative energies are standing by, ready to replace what we get from oil, you say? Not so fast. There is no amount of renewable energy that will replace the energy density of petroleum, gas, and coal.

This article by Roger Adair How sustainable is renewable energy?, published on www.energybulletin.net tells a personal story of his experience in the wind energy business in Ireland, Scotland, and England.

The amount of deuterium in one gallon of water is equivalent to the energy of 300 gallons of gasoline. (read Department of Energy What is fusion? which describes the hot fusion process.) This is the kind of energy density that will power global mass transportation systems, allow manufacturing of high-technology materials and goods, and send humans to space, and beyond.

This is the kind of clean, atomic power that the new energy movement reveals can lead Earth in an evolution of human society, and as McLuhan said, “program our environment” with care, and in service to all living things.

As access to oil becomes increasingly difficult, the entire infrastructure that petroleum built will fall away, for each technology creates an entire landscape of services and disservices. The world that petro-dollars created will dissolve in direct proportion as the fuel disappears, and this means more than no filling stations for your car.

Your job, your home, your school, your food, your fun, your clothes, your Facebook page – our lives are cradled in a world that is slipping away. We cannot continue to live the way we do, and we don’t want to. But if cold fusion scientists cannot get this technology developed, it’s hard times for planet Earth for years, and possibly decades, to come.

Every effort must be made to get the basic science of low-energy nuclear reactions understood and online. Only then can private investment come in to design and engineer new forms of energy devices with the power to fuel a new type human civilization, where ecological wisdom is fundamental to all processes.

What can you do?

Jan Marwan told us:

Start talking wherever you are, in your family, at work, when you’re in governmental institutions, start talking. The more you talk about this topic, the more you raise it, the more you involve other people, …you know… it spread’s like a virus!

Cold Fusion Now!

Colin Campbell: “After oil, we’ll be happier.”

Colin Campbell, geologist, author, and founder of the Association for the Study of Peak Oil and Gas ASPO [visit] spoke with Jim Puplava on the Financial Sense Newshour Saturday, November 6 saying “The bulk of our oil came from just two epochs in our Earth’s long history, just 90 million and 150 million years ago, and we are now entering the second half of the oil age.”

In short, for the past 100 years, humankind has built a civilization using the energy derived from oil created from “very rare circumstances in geological time”.

World discoveries of oil fields peaked in the 1960s, and in 1981, the world began to use more oil than it found in new fields. Since then, we’ve been drawing from the same mega-fields discovered decades earlier.

A leading figure in the peak oil movement, Mr. Campbell admits that “there’s no good information about oil reserves in the public” but described what prompted the doubling of reported oil reserves in the 1980s.

Since prices were based on a quota system – which was based on reserves, when prices plunged in the mid-80s, countries like Saudi Arabia, whose land held the largest oil fields in the world, increased their reserves overnight, thereby increasing their quota, and elevating the price. Other members of OPEC followed suit, increasing reserves many times over with no new discoveries, only an accounting trick.

He believes, along with Ken Duffeyes [visit], that the peak of regular conventional oil was in 2005, and he puts the peak of all categories of oil, including deep water oil, tar sands, and these “more difficult things that are slower to extract”, in 2008.

“It [the date for peak] might have been influenced by the fall in demand due the economic recession, but that’s seems to be about the date as far as I can piece it together.”

Although there is great debate about the date of peak oil, focusing on a date misses the point. According to Mr. Campbell, the actual date of peak oil is “not as important as the vision of the long slope on the other side of peak, that’s really what’s going to change the world when we enter the second half of the age of oil, when production declines, and the economy contracts. It’s really very obvious.”

The decline is slow at only 2-3% per year, but it is declining. “The banks have been lending more than they have on deposit confident that tomorrow’s growth will be the collateral for today’s debt. Well that’s no longer valid, and so the thing begins to unravel”.

Robert Hirsch, who in 2005 did a study for the federal government on peak oil,
suggested that the best case scenario to mitigate the effects of peak oil was to start planning 20 years before the peak date, and the second best scenario would be to start planning 10 years before peak date.

Mr. Campbell agreed with Mr. Puplava that we probably don’t have twenty years, or even ten years to prepare. He thinks we face a radical change in the way our economy runs, and though he didn’t mention a cold fusion scenario, he’s optimistic that a more sustainable and local economy could be an opportunity for humanity, and that we could be happier than we are now.

“There could be better relationships and better understandings that flow from this… I don’t know if you’ve been to an airport in recent years, but it’s just a kind of nightmare experience.”

Listen to Colin J. Campbell on Jim Puplava’s Financial Sense Newshour archives for November 6 or click the link below for the 30 minute audio.

2010-1106-2 Colin Campbell by Cold Fusion Now

BP attacks the Gulf, US surrenders

June 14, 2010 — The Gulf is a graveyard. Fishing is likely finished for the next several years, if not decades. Wildlife has been devastated, and some species may never return. Tourism to some of the most beautiful beaches in the US has plummeted. Shipping lanes are set to be sludge tracks. And hurricane season is just beginning.

BP attacks the Gulf, but the virtual surrender from the Feds hasn’t shamed the oily politicians enough to keep them from whining about more drill permits. An Exxon Valdez gushes into the Gulf every 3-4 days as a whole ocean clogs with crude. Listening to the army of those who want to expand drilling further into the last remaining wildlands is a surreal and sorry sound.

Even those who accept the Peak Oil scenario fret over “environmentalists going bonkers” with their “outrageous demands” to curb this sociopathic need to consume oil.

It shouldn’t be surprising. Petroleum revenues fuel our entire society. We are all complicit. Few of us have the skills to escape the ubiquity of the slick. Worse, our elected representatives, in training for industry jobs, deflect scrutiny of their oily paycheck by shouting: 50,000 jobs on the line if drilling doesn’t continue; the “growth” of our economy will halt; poor ole grandma won’t be able to heat her house in December.

Where was the whining as jobs were vacuumed up across the border over the last several decades? And define economic growth. Growth for who?

Sadly, when it comes to Grandma’s house, there is an element of truth. For Grandma won’t be able to heat her house in winter much longer, whether drilling continues or not. Indeed, the most compelling argument against further drilling is not about jobs or the environment. It’s about Grandma, and it’s strategic.

The world’s finite petroleum resource is about half gone; the easy discoveries have been made, and the easy oil has been extracted and burned. Global oil discoveries peaked in the early 1960s and as demand has grown, we’ve been nursing the same oil fields for decades without replacement. Only the difficult, dangerous, and more expensive to get at oil remains. Whether it’s tar sands or deep ocean, the price of oil is set to rise, going well beyond Grandma’s ability to pay.

It’s called rationing, price rationing to be specific. And the biggest victims will be oil’s biggest users – US.  With only the expensive oil left to extract, higher prices are inevitable. Eventually, Grandma and everybody else in the US will be priced out. Meanwhile, $10 a gallon won’t stop the guy on his tiny motorbike in Vietnam who only uses a quarter-gallon a week.

In a recent interview, Dr. Michael McKubre stated the most compelling argument.

“These days with what’s going on in the Gulf of Mexico, people are sensitized to the fact that oil is bad; it’s environmentally bad; burning it is bad; it is worse than bad – it’s crazy. It’s a one-time resource, it’s a chemical feedstock; it should be used to make our fertilizers and plastics and the things that make our society comfortable. We shouldn’t be burning it. Someone said burning oil to heat your home is like burning Rembrandts. It’s crazy.”

The range of materials that can be created from oil is extensive, from life-saving plastic medical devices to writing utensils. Notwithstanding polyester, petroleum products are a one-time gift to humanity. Continuing to run an entire transportation network on petroleum is a “huge mis-allocation of resources” and in no way sustainable.

Future generations will look back at this past century and shake their heads, mystified at our Medieval ways. How could a people so effectively misuse their resources? Shouldn’t we be preparing for this inevitable decline in the avaialablity of oil? Shouldn’t we make contingency plans to mitigate the inevitable higher prices? Shouldn’t we invest in a clean and safe energy source? Shouldn’t we have cold fusion now?