Having just put another couple of logs on the fire on this chilly night, I am once again reminded of our total reliance upon winter warmth. As I mentioned before, we’ve developed an adapted hibernation strategy to get us through the cold months, but our dependency on fossil fuels of late has made us very vulnerable.
I’m a glass-half-full kind of guy though, & like most permaculture advocates, see a lot of opportunities in this situation for positive change & creative solutions. Permaculture was originally developed in response to the oil crisis of the 1970′s – looking at solutions that didn’t rely upon the availability of such easy energy. Since then our whole way of life has become more & more dependent upon the supply of oil & we are more vulnerable than ever to a reduction in its availability. Just think of all the things that we now take for granted & that rely upon oil in some form or another for its production or transportation.
Permaculture was always about looking beyond oil & as time goes on its solutions become more & more relevant to our lives.
For those who are unfamiliar with the concept of Peak Oil, it puts forward the idea that we have now reached maximum production of oil (so from now on it will become much more difficult & expensive to extract). This would mean that everything using oil in any part of its production will become more expensive too (just about everything we currently spend money on!). Clearly our dependence upon oil has become completely out of control & we urgently need to take different approaches to meeting our needs (& responsibly cutting back on our unnecessary wants).