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Peak Oil And The Land Down Under Dusko Jocic (April 20, 2006)

One would think that on a continent of only twenty-three million people peak energy/oil wouldn't be that great
of a problem. That's what I thought before I went there. Instead, Australia is a continent with plentiful
natural resources that are now peaking and going into depletion. And the continent lacks water, good farm land
and has suburban sprawl that equals that of Los Angeles.

I got off a 747 in Melbourne and a friend of mine picked me up. We drove through the city and all I could
see were subdivisions and skyscrappers. The drive took about an hour and a half back to his house. Melbourne
is a giant suburb, with little evidence that the place was once a densely populated and thriving gold mining colony.
The downtown core has many clusters of skyscrappers that will surely have issues once global peak oil is reached.

On the upside, Australia doesn't need as much electricity and natural gas as North America And Europe. The climate is mild and all you need is a portable space heater and a good blanket to keep you warm on a cold winter night. There are few air conditioning units in the country so from a climate perspective the majority of the
continent, especially Melbourne and Sydney are alright. And this is the majority of the continents population.
There is also plenty of potential for wind and solar generation. As I drove from Melbourne to Sydney
I noticed many coal plants but nowhere as many as when I fly over the United States. I also noticed quite a
few windmills in the countryside. After doing a bit of research I learned taht cattle farmers don't like the
wind farms and think it might upsed their livestocks' hunger. I'm sure our bovine brothers will surely get used
to the hum of wind power without getting anxiety issues. But Australia is a continent resistant to the changes of doing things differently. And everyone is used to their big box stores and Hungry Jacks (The equivilant of Burger King in the rest of the world.)

Without the green revolution many of the cattle farms of Australia would be unable to produce anywhere
as near as much produce as they do today. Australia is a net food exporter to the world, but mostly Asia. When
Asian countries don't get their daily dose of MOO they won't be happy campers. They may decide to get on ships
and invade and plunder the land down under. The Australian army has no chance of stopping hundreds of millions
of Asians and could easily be a target of opportunity in the coming resource wars. The United States Navy would
surely come to the rescue as the United States buys much of the natural resources found in the country. Most
have already been promised to Uncle Sam. Canada has done the same also.

My experience visiting Australia makes me realise that where I live today is a much safer place
geopolitically and environmentally. The Northeastern region of North America might get a little colder when
natural gas and oil shortages become an issue, but at least the armies of Asia are far far away.





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