I have long believed after many years of study, that mankind is going to revert back to Stone Age living. This will be the inevitable outcome of the depletion of global energy supplies (oil, coal, nature gas, uranium).
Not long ago, I came across a quote (posted here) that pointed out that we have long since mined all the easily available minerals and resources found in the Earth. This is true, the rates of return on our discovery and extraction efforts is greatly diminished, and it will NEVER get any better.
The important point here is the non-renewable resources like metal ores are being mined deeper and deeper, requiring greater and greater energy expenditures. This discovery / extraction cycle cannot be maintained much longer as energy supplies run out. When this happens (fairly soon now), we will simply stop mining ore.
This means we will also stop having a modern, industrial civilization. There are of course, many other factors that also mean we will stop having a modern industrialization, but I don’t want to under emphasize this one point.
When our industrial civilization effectively ‘stops’ (which will happen long before we run out of metals), we will revert to more ‘primitive’ methods of living. In time, when even our recycling / recovery efforts to reuse existing stocks and supplies of metal are gone, we simply won’t have any metal, period.
Only highly durable (and quite literally priceless) metals would still be in existence. Titanium for example (but hard to work with), stainless steel, probably brass, gold and silver will still be reusable. A lot of our modern metals in use today (steel, iron, aluminum) will corrode or oxidize into oblivion. In any case, civilization if it continues to exist at this time, will be much, much different without much metal in use.
This of course, also means that other inventions such as glass, all types of plastic, asphalt, ceramics (as opposed to clay), and all forms of synthetics (shoes, clothing, carpets, upholstery, etc.) will also be long gone — FOREVER.
None of these ‘inventions’ will be coming back. Oh, we might make some crappy looking windows from sand (silica), but not much else. It’ll be wood and stone, hand-made brick and mortar, leather and dirt. We’ll all go back to doing things the ‘hard way’, whether we like it or not.
Some think we can keep this whole thing running on alternative energy, but that definitely will not happen. We cannot even maintain, let alone build, alternative energy contraptions (PV panels, hydro electric, wind / wave generators, etc.) without oil — forget about it. Nor could we stock or supply enough spare parts, or of course, locate and mine the ores deep in the Earth to manufacture the replacements.
Once we “use up” our endowment of cheap, plentiful energy, we are going to REVERT, we have absolutely no other choice.
And we have NO IDEA how we are going to survive when this happens. Remember, this will actually happen long BEFORE we run out of all energy supplies, for many of the other reasons I’ve shared before on this blog. In any case, there are a few people who have given this some serious thought.
There is one dude who I admire for his gumption and fortitude that has (using my own words) concluded the same things as I have, and that is Torjus Gaaren who runs the Living Primitively site. He’s doing his best to practice the primitive living skills now, so that they can be taught to someone else later on (he offers classes sometimes).
So here is what I’d like to see some of my readers do — send him a donation to keep this effort ‘alive’. I just did again, not bragging, not trying to say anything at all about that, I do it because I truly do believe in what he’s doing. Go visit his site and hit the PayPal button on the right hand side and help him out. It’s not easy living without any money, we’ve all got one foot in the system while we’re trying to find ways to get out.
Torjus writes about his experiences and posts it up on his site for all the world to see — for free. He’s certainly not doing this for the money, I can absolutely guarantee you that. He’s given up on other opportunities so that he can do what he loves doing best, and learn what needs to be taught to future mankind, and we can all learn from his experience.
I’ve long said it takes serious time to make your individual preparations, and time for all of us means money and effort. He’s got the ambition and has proven himself able to make the effort — so this is where we can step in and help him with the money.
I’ll let my readers in on a secret — I give away all the donations I receive to ‘worthy individuals’ time and again. My own donations for June were $50. I gave this back to another, who needed it more then I. I wound up with a spare grinder kit and gave this to yet another. I do this every month, without fail, even when there are no donations to me, which happens quite often.
I’ve never talked about it before, but I have tried to share with all of you that a ‘new ethic’ is needed and how I truly despise the greedy monsters out there like Savinar who are only seeking the advantage over everyone else. They are constantly begging for money, always for themselves. We need to “put up or shut up”, ie., practice what we preach as a demonstration of who and what we really are, if only to prove to ourselves, of what we really believe.
The proof is in the doing, not the online posturing and postulating and procrastinating. Do what you can, when you can. Reach out and help those who are trying to help you. What goes around, certainly DOES come around.