Wednesday, May 20, 2009
There must be an answer
Winston Churchill once said, “It's not enough that we do our best; sometimes we have to do what's required.”
For the energy crisis, what is required?
The previous five blogs covered key points from Dr. Bartlett’s “Arithmetic, Population and Energy” speech at the 2009 EntConnect conference.
(1) To find the doubling time for any percentage of steady growth, use this simple formula: 70 divided by the percentage (70/%). Hence, 7% steady growth per year equates to a doubling time of 10 years.
(2) We saw with the case of the doubling of grain on a chess board and the splitting bacteria in a jar, steady growth equates to huge escalations over short periods of time.
Simple arithmetic tells us that population growth and/or growth in the rates of consumption of resources cannot be sustained. Understanding the consequences of growth, we can see trouble coming and take proactive action to avert disaster. Most important when acting early, we are more likely to control the factors to sustain living in an ethical and healthy way.
If we ignore the red flags, zero population growth will happen anyway. As we do nothing, factors, out of our control, will suppress life and promote death. The resulting human suffering could be incalcuable.
Space confines detailed solutions. Thoughtful community planning and education are a start. Exploring and developing renewable energy resources are another. And let’s not forget one of the most important factors, people who are willing to think.
Solomon expressed this timely wisdom:
A prudent man sees danger and takes refuge,
but the simple keep going and suffer for it.
(New International Version)
On that spiritual note, instead of "In Growth We Trust" may we choose "In God We Trust" when we tackle our great challenges.
EntConnect website: entconnect.org
Dr. Bartlett links:
Sir Winston Churchill link:
Photos from everystockphoto.com:
Sir Winston Churchill: http://everystockphoto.com/photo.php?imageId=2235250