These Clues Suggest We’re Headed For a MASSIVE Global Energy Crisis

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We’re going through a civilizational-scale metamorphosisIt’s a broad-range process that happens every few generations or centuries and reshapes so many aspects of society that a new one has risen on the other side once it’s over. As history shows, this will play out through a long period going ahead.

But events are already underway and being felt. More is to come. While developments in COVID-19 and sways in the economy, finance, and politics galvanize attention and monopolize M.S.M., the energy sector is undergoing profound transformations that will significantly impact our lifestyle. Because, well, everything runs on energy.

This model transition has been going on for some time now. Like many other events taking place everywhere else, it’s accelerating and already showing through cracks in the system, compounding the instability sweeping the U.S. and the rest of the world.

There isn’t much we can do about the big scheme. We’re just passengers, really. But understanding what’s happening and how this shake-up can affect us is still important. To see the forest for the trees, though, we must first try and connect some dots.

Energy is the basis of modern civilization

The development of sanitation enabled the expansion of cities. Common diseases were eradicated with the help of sewage and treated water. Humankind could finally enjoy the productivity and other benefits afforded by large concentrations of different people living and working together. But the intensive use of hydrocarbons and the electrification boom in the late 19th and early 20th centuries changed everything.

Energy consumption patterns have significantly varied throughout history. Two hundred years ago, everyone used wood as fuel. Then coal became the primary source of energy. The transition to petroleum and natural gas came a few decades later. Nuclear emerged after World War II, while renewables have been gaining ground for the last 20 years.

Though supply has increased following population and industrialization growth, the use-share of energy sources remained relatively stable during the last few decades. Fossils have dominated for the past hundred years. Coal, oil, and natural gas still account for the majority of the energy supply worldwide. 

The Energy and Power Matrix (or mix) explained

The terms energy and power are used interchangeably, but they’re not the same.

Energy moves and heats matter. Power is the rate energy is used or converted.

These concepts used in physics similarly apply to express production and usage of both energy and power in countries and the world. Since a varied mixture of fuels and sources compose these indexes, they’re called matrix or mixes.

Energy matrix (E.M.) is the total energetic expenditure of a country, region, or the world. It’s the combination of primary (unconverted) and secondary (electricity) sources used for transportation, heating, the military, and large-scale production. 

Power Generation mix (P.G.) is the electricity production for final consumption. It’s a subset of the Energy mix, comprising renewable/low-emission (solar, wind, hydro, and nuclear) and non-renewable (coal and fossils), and used to power The Grid directly.

Source breakdown is different in the energy vs. the power mix

Hydropower accounts for 15,8% of global power generation, but only 6.4 % of the energy mix. The difference is even more significant for oil: only 3.1% are used to generate electricity, but a massive 33.1% for transportation and heating. That’s mainly because power generation is determined greatly by energy policies, and these can vary radically among countries. 

Some examples: in France, 70% of the electricity (P.G.) comes from nuclear. For comparison, in the U.S. it’s 21% and in Germany, 28%. Nuclear generation contributes only 2.3% to Brazil’s P.G., while hydropower makes up a whopping 64% share of its electricity pie. Australia has only 5% coming from hydro and 56% from coal. And so on. 

Today many of these variations largely reflect energy policies implemented by governments almost half a century ago, when the last significant energy shift happened. In keeping with the examples above, the Messemer plan was responsible for the “nuclearization” of France’s power generation during the ’70s and ’80s. Brazil went a different way, but its large hydropower capacity also results from massive investments made by the military government during that same period. U.K., Germany, U.S., and others also devised their nuclear programs around that time too.

Energy policies change over time, driven by social, (geo)political, and economic trends

Large moves take a long time to materialize. The energy sector is more transatlantic than a speedboat. It took the U.K. almost four decades to reduce coal usage from 60% in 1980 to near 2% of P.G. in 2019. Regardless of objectives, strategies, or direction, years are necessary to start seeing results and generations to fulfill plans. Not to mention realization frequently falls short of projected targets. 

Disasters cause major impacts and important, long-term shifts, too. The Fukushima reactor accident in 2011 brought a massive backlash against nuclear energy during the last decade. Not only in Japan – perhaps one of the most committed to the promotion of nuclear energy in the modern era – but the entire world.

Fluctuations in price or availability of a particular fuel (or fuels) can cause shocks. Changes in alliances may facilitate or impose barriers (weaponization) to trading and new initiatives or steer policy directions. The market plays a big hand in this as well: significant price drops in the wake of the “Shale Revolution” boosted gas and oil adoption during the last decade. These dynamics repeat everywhere.

Production is only part of the equation

It usually takes place at locations distant from consumption centers, particularly in the case of electricity. Delivery to final consumers is done by way of highly complex and capillary transmission and distribution systems. Opening fronts or expanding parts of the grid are costly, red-tape nightmares. It’s also a long-term, high-risk, capital-intensive business, dependent on specialized, heavyweight equipment. The same holds for oil and gas.

The above is vital for these reasons: 

  1. Energy transportation/power transmission is in many instances transnational.
  2. The main infrastructure is already a few decades old in most countries.
  3. Legislation and regulations are also outdated in many places.
  4. The transmission system was built based on non-renewable power generation.

The implications of 1, 2, and 3 are self-evident. Number 4 matters because solar and wind generation present temporal fluctuations and geographical distributions that impose significant challenges to the power system. Nuclear, hydro, and coal can supply 90% of the time (or more), whereas solar reaches a maximum of 50% (daytime only and in near-perfect conditions). Wind has similar limitations.

Due to these and other technicalities, the growing shares of VREs (Variable Renewable Energies) feeding into the existing networks is creating imbalances and concerns for Transmission System Operators (TSO). Especially in Europe, where de-carbonization is big. The issue is being monitored, and engineering may develop solutions and safeguards. But issue is what we usually have before something becomes a problem. And when it comes to energy and power, entire populations can get affected whenever “something” happens. 

Instabilities, outages, and spikes in price are potential threats

Significant events took place in developed and developing countries around the world in 2020:

  • A black-out amid the COVID-19 outbreak had hospitals resorting to generators in Mumbai, India.
  • Wildfires caused rolling grid-downs in California, the first in almost 20 years.
  • A transformer caught fire, leaving an entire state in Brazil without power for a month.
  • Simultaneous power outages hit four high-density regions of Kazakhstan over months.

Then we had Texas early this year (here is a website that keeps track of power outages worldwide for those wanting to monitor the situation).

Were these not-unusual or isolated events? I’ll defer that to experts. Do they signal fragilities and vulnerabilities in the systems? Absolutely. The appointed causes range from natural disasters to equipment failures, bugs, and even suspected cyberattacks. The fact remains that millions were affected, and even larger populations could suffer if similar events keep occurring. 

Then there’s the very present threat of price hikesI know it’s already going up and fast. I’m talking about sudden, explosive surges, especially in gas, diesel, natural gas, and electricity. The kind that could mean larger parts of the population suddenly struggling or even forced out of The Grid, unable to pay for energy. Companies could go under such context too, which would be equally bad.

And even if supply remains stable, significant price shocks will ripple through the production chain. Disruptions and spreading inflation come to mind as possible results. That is not gratuitous doom porn: something similar happened in the 70’s Oil Shock. The context is different, but if anything, civilization has become more energy-dependent, not less. 

Complex and highly interconnected systems are inherently vulnerable 

Many factors can impact the energy sector. For example, the Ever Given container ship stuck across the Suez Canal in Egypt, causing massive gridlock in the world’s busiest shipping route. Though it was finally freed after ten days, shockwaves will be felt throughout global trading. Estimates say the canal blockage trapped about 2% of the worldwide oil supply in the mess. Sounds minor, but it’s not – and it ain’t over yet. Another blow to an already strained industry and the stressed economy.

When it comes to power transmission, repairs, expansions, and adaptations can take a long time. Replacements are costly, often sourced overseas. Sure enough, contingency and emergency plans are in place. But as in other sectors, “just in time” means fewer or no spares are kept in stock for maximum “efficiency” (and profitability, of course). Since COVID-19 struck, we know what that means when some SHTF.

Geopolitically, energy is a strategic and critical national security concern, so it’s already highly weaponized and politicized (see Nordstream 2 Project quarrel, among others). As we’ve seen, the grid can also be targeted for cyberattacks and subject to natural, climate-related threats. Rest assured, though: even with all that, the changes will advance.

Green isn’t as clean as we’re being told.

The Green Wave is finally coming of age.

Regardless of your, mine, or anyone else’s opinion, the “green” revolution will happen. It already is. The revolution is one of those deep-running movements even governments, institutions, or the market have little authority over. It’s the Big Wheel in motion, and it’s accelerating.

It won’t be linear and may turn out differently than most people think or activists paint. For years we’re being sold the “green” future as a fleet of E.V.s and rechargeable appliances whizzing around pollution-free cities, fully powered by tidy photovoltaic parks and instagrammable wind farms. But there are hurdles:

  • Renewables aren’t as “green” or as “clean” as believed. They require metals, minerals, and other materials in large quantities, which demand mining, fossils, and other environmentally damaging processes to manufacture, assemble and operate.
  • Renewables are unreliable:2.5 to 3.5 times on average less reliable than non-renewable sources. Even if you prefer intermittent or variable (semantics), this is an issue. In many places, they’re impractical due to conditions. 
  • Lifespan is 20-30 years for solar and wind generators. Nuclear reactors can last double that or more. Hydro powerplants can run indefinitely. Much from wind turbines, solar panels, and batteries can’t be recycled and need special disposal.
  • Solar panels, wind generators, and batteries are approaching an efficiency apex. Older generation ones are very inefficient and nearing retirement. There will be gains, but breakthroughs are harder to come by. 
  • Strict regulations may hinder expansion at projected/committed targets soon but are required until more knowledge is gathered about impacts, side effects, and other unknowns. Technology is relatively new, and there’s still a lot to learn about all that.

The question is that when put against fossils and nuclear for energy density, efficiency, stability, and reliability, renewables still fall short in those necessary standards, at least for the time being. Coal, oil, and nuclear are still abundant enough to warrant energy and power supply in large quantities for decades to come. That makes it clear the “green revolution” is not about low-emission replacing hydrocarbons entirely but instead adding to the mix in growing quantities.

Some may frown at these facts. None of that means renewables aren’t good, just not perfect or the saving grace touted by some. No source is perfect. They all have limitations and trade-offs. They all cause some damage to produce, convert, transport, or use. To live is to consume. Renewables have many positives and will advance by leaps and bounds, probably just not the way it’s seen in movies, magazines, and marketing pieces.

Decentralized power generation: the real Green Revolution?

New forms of production and generation must be constantly developed and added to the mix to keep up with ever-growing energy demands. It’s exactly what’s happening with renewables. Citizens and private companies are adopting renewables to electrify their own lives on a large scale. Is widespread, decentralized production the future of energy and power? Or the green revolution will happen by way of corporations and governments investing in large installations? Maybe both? We’ll see.

But there’s more.

However this plays out, “The Grid” will still demand a big-league, more proven solution for its needs. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), global energy demand is projected to rise by about 50% by 2040 and to double by 2050 nearly. Nuclear is currently the cleanest, safest (yes, safest) large-scale power-generation technology capable of meeting that. 

Nuclear comes full-circle and will see a revival propelled by necessity.

Fukushima was the last nail in the nuclear debate, but atomic energy was already falling out of favor before the accident. Inadequate policies, lack of fulfillment, and many (misleading and undeserved) negative marketing helped give it a bad rep. The surging of solar and wind technologies in the late ’90s had the world in love with the idea of clean and risk-free energy – an easy selling ideology that has been cleverly marketed as the perfect solution by some.

These and other events tilted policies in many countries. Germany committed to shutting down its 17 reactors, effectively reducing nuclear share from 28% of P.G. to zero by 2022. Australia shelved its nuclear program after the Labor Party won the 2007 election. Others went the other way though: the U.A.E. – one of the largest oil producers, no less – OK’d its first plant also in 2007. Barakah NPP Unit 1 connected to the grid in August last year. Plans are for nuclear to supply 25% of the country’s P.G. in the future.                                    

Personalities like Elon Musk, Bill Gates will help boost worldwide acceptance. They are (among others) big promoters of the technology currently investing in next-gen nuclear alternatives. Whether we like or hate them (or nuclear) is irrelevant. Those are the facts, and realistically there’s no way to achieve a greener, electrified future without reconsidering it. They are powerful, determined, and influential, and that will turn a lot of people, politicians, and the media into nuclear.

US: the present and future of power production

The drop in uranium prices brought by Kazakhstan (over 40% of worldwide supply) and other state-owned miners during the last 20 years contributed to disincentivized production and investment in western countries. The largest uranium mine in the world (McArthur River in Canada) was shut down and put on “maintenance” in 2018. Activities are still suspended.  

Since 2015 U.S. has to import 99% of its yellowcake supply (uranium concentrate). The entire American navy fleet runs on nuclear. Almost 1/4 of all 438 reactors in operation worldwide are on U.S. soil. The last unit built was inaugurated in 2016. Together, these facts don’t paint a very assuring picture, especially considering the most prominent producers aren’t exactly friendly towards America. Not everything is dark, though.

A few years ago, the Nuclear Fuel Commission of the Department Of Energy (D.O.E.) came up with a study and proposal to reverse this scenario and revive the U.S. uranium industry. It’s a bipartisan-supported initiative, something unseen since president Eisenhower advanced the atomic program and brought the U.S. to nuclear technology leadership in the 1950s.

But it’s still a 10-year program. If everything goes according to plan and the policies and programs (and prices) spark the uranium market and new reactors are commissioned, etc., it may take a generation for the U.S. to become independent again. 

What about fossils?

Meanwhile, the fossil industry is seeing the writing on the wall. There are a lot of uncertainty, changes, new policies. Barriers to development and extraction are surging in many countries. Consumer pressure builds. No one is in the business to lose money or take crazy risks. Who in their right mind would swim against the tide?

COVID-19 and the Green New Deal affected oil production and consumption patterns worldwide and wreaked havoc in the shale industry. Oil price volatility and the whole petrodollar debacle contribute to making things murky. If investment slows down and new fronts start to back-step or halt, just that could impact the energy sector and bring unknown consequences. 

Fossils will keep dominating the energy supply for the foreseeable future but should lose share to nuclear and renewables in the energy and power mixes. How the industry and the market will react to that, how their responses will affect the balance of mixes, and what effects all this will bring for society and individuals is impossible to predict.


I hope it has become clear this is not a radical shift but something more subtle. Yet energy is such a big thing for civilization that even tiny movements can have vast effects and consequences nonetheless. Any change implies a period of uncertainties and, potentially, instabilities and disruptions, so we must be ready.

How can you prep for this?

First, understand this is a structural change. I emphasized electricity and the U.S. situation because this is an American blog with a large American audience. The U.S.A. is currently the second-largest producer/consumer in the world (China – you guessed it – is first). But the issue is global, and everywhere else, the situation is not too different. Maybe better in some places, worse in others. Just remember: everything is connected. Each country will face its own challenges, but troubles in one area can spread and affect others.

Second, even if things unfold differently than conveyed here (or elsewhere), don’t think for a moment things are solid and stable in the energy field (pun intended). Think about Texas. The question is not if, but when, how, and what will happen. That is perhaps the main takeaway. 

Third, there’s still time to act. Becoming even slightly less dependent on the system may help. A simple backup kit (generation+storage) is enough for emergencies and short, temporary power interruptions. Joining the decentralized power revolution is a more effective, definitive defense against price shocks and long-term outages. Either way, there are tons of options for capacity, size, type, cost, ease of operation, etc. 

  • Splitting between energy (heating, cooking, mobility) and power (electricity) and reassessing needs can be an excellent strategy to reduce the dependency on one fuel and allow the use of multiple sources. Become more knowledgeable, more creative, test and play to break from convention to be more versatile and flexible.
  • Short-term/emergency are low-capacity, low-complexity kits aimed at providing just enough juice to power up “survival items” during short grid-downs for an individual or small family. Think of an Energy E.D.C. comprised of simple, reliable, and inexpensive items: a compact solar panel (around 25W/25% efficiency) and portable battery banks (20.000mAh or more) to keep smartphones, flashlights, G.P.S.’ (lighting, communication, information, and orientation) going. Rechargeable A.A. and A.A.A. size batteries and step-up converters (5 to 12V, for instance) can add versatility. Don’t forget cables and connections. Campers and outdoor people everywhere use such systems, so they’re proven to work. Downsides are limited capacity, longer charging times, and if there’s no sun, there’s no power. Ideally, each member should have his own kit. 
  • Mid-to-long term systems require heavier and more sophisticated equipment to power life support systems, refrigeration, lighting, tooling, appliances, and others for more extended periods (weeks or months). These are more expensive and complex devices that can run on fuel (diesel, gasoline, natural gas, propane, etc.) or solar, wind, mechanical and hydro. Many modern systems work in tandem with battery banks of various capacities with advanced power management. They can be portable (transported in a car or truck) or fixed. Semi-portables, especially solar, are excellent for people living in smaller houses or apartments or wherever fuel can’t be used or stored, and noise and fumes are no Bueno. Fixed systems are also modular and can be expanded over time. But they require space and specialized installation, maintenance, and support. 
  • Research the options for capacity, installation, and operation. Consider your present and future necessities to avoid falling short or over-expending. Check different brands, specifications, and reputations. Sharing the investment in bigger systems can turn viable and be cost-effective.

Here’s how to figure out how much power you require.

One last piece of advice: always opt for quality items from reputable brands. Cheap is crap, and crap leaves us in the dark when we most need it. 

What are your plans?

Have you thought about what you’ll do if this crisis comes to fruition? Where can you cut back usage? What can you do manually? What workarounds or alternative technology will you use? Let’s talk about it in the comments.

About Fabian

Fabian Ommar is a 50-year-old middle-class worker living in São Paulo, Brazil. Far from being the super-tactical or highly trained military survivor type, he is the average joe who since his youth has been involved with self-reliance and outdoor activities and the practical side of balancing life between a big city and rural/wilderness settings. Since the 2008 world economic crisis, he has been training and helping others in his area to become better prepared for the “constant, slow-burning SHTF” of living in a 3rd world country.

Fabian’s ebook, Street Survivalism: A Practical Training Guide To Life In The City, is a practical training method for common city dwellers based on the lifestyle of the homeless (real-life survivors) to be more psychologically, mentally, and physically prepared to deal with the harsh reality of the streets during normal or difficult times. 

You can follow Fabian on Instagram @stoicsurvivor

Picture of Fabian Ommar

Fabian Ommar

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  • Great article Fabian.
    I was on board with green technology and still am IF they can find a way to extract the needed materials without using fossil fuels for extraction, processing and transport. And find a way to recycle the solar panels and wind turbines (IIRC, they are made out of fiberglass), without just tossing them into a land fill in some third world country.
    Otherwise, it is not really going green.

    Is it really economically viable to use green energy to charge and power an entire fleet of EVs/trucks in the USA, let alone the whole grid? I would like to see the math on that one.

    Charles H. Smith is the only person I can think of that even offers a differing point of view on it: Decentralization, de-globalization, downsize, and go local. Everything from local power generation (mico-grids), localized government, localized production of food (within a 100mi radius vs 1,200mi) and even goods (again, within a 100mi or so radius vs from the other side of the world), smaller more efficient homes, less hyper-consumerism.
    It is also his idea against The Great Reset.

    • Thanks @1StMarineJarHead.

      Yes, I believe the real revolution is de-centralization. It’s happening at various fronts now and maybe that’s why we’re seeing so much counter-force by elites and governments, all trying to fight it for more centralization and control. This is exactly what’s going on and generating this tension and conflict.

      I for myself can’t think of a 100% de-centralized world, as much as I find it possible a 100% centralized world. Not everyone can (or want) be independent, and even if the entire population did want this, it wouldn’t be achievable by various reasons.

      So maybe we’ll see a “hybrid” model in the future, with greater parts of the population organized as Charles Hugh Smith proposes, and others still more dependent on The Grid for power, food, eater, products, money, etc. Realistically, there are needs that only centralized production/high capacity generation can supply.

      Maybe that’s one way to reduce dependency, the predatory exploitation of Earth’s natural resources and other illnesses and excesses of modern lifestyle. “Local” production and consumption can indeed reduce waste and loss of resources, increase rationality and recycling, so more of that would indeed be better.

      • What I like about Charles H. Smith (herein known as CHS) idea is it is in fact taking back power to the people by their own choices, methods, and actions.
        I occasionally see posts in various sites (to include this one) stating “WE NEED TO FIGHT (insert name of evil group, political party, governing body, reptile people from the X dimension)!!!!
        Fight who? How?
        CHS idea is a lot better, less violent, less destructive and a lot more environmentally friendly. Get enough people thinking and doing the same, affect real change.
        Think Ghandi and his “home spun” revolution to defeat the British.

        • Not disagreeing with you on principle 1stMJH but if Ghandi had been revolting against the Germans or the French – he’d have been toast stat.

  • Some random thoughts

    Some of the inability to generate enough power for emergency needs (like the Texas power outage recently) can be traced to political opposition. Texas asked the EPA for an OK to fire up some coal-powered resources when they saw the cold weather forecasts — and the EPA turned them down…

    For a long time it has been known that thorium-based nuclear power can be much safer and lacks the poisonous waste problems of uranium-based nuclear power. Analyzing TPTB for the long time opposition to thorium power development is way too complex and time-sucking for use here.

    While solar power is available directly (without storage needs) only about half the time, there are third world efforts to use it during its active “half time” to raise incredibly heavy and massive weights up on pulleys. That way the energy so stored can be controllably released as those weights slowly come down … to await the next direct sunlight opportunity to pulled back up again.

    If you are a third world leader with vast petroleum deposits that can only be sold on world markets with the US blessing of US dollars being the intermediary (per Kissinger’s deal with the Saudis), and you want to bypass those dollars (because of the modern day money-changers-in-the-temple style ripoff), you can count on some unrelated excuse (like non-existent WMDs you don’t have) to be used to sell a war against you, and your likely execution, to keep those money changers happy.


  • Really good article. I used to work in energy and am strongly opinionated about it.

    I can’t agree more about the need to decentralize, as much as possible. I think the writing is on the wall for oil and gas as well. It won’t happen overnight, but it’ll happen. The new administration is so anti-fossil fuels they’re going to make it impossible for the industry to function.

    And it’ll be a disaster, because as you say, renewables have their own host of problems.

    I went to Japan a few years ago and thought they had it figured out– lots of small power plants scattered all over the country. They use far less energy because they don’t waste nearly as much in transmission. It’s far cheaper, less wasteful, and safer from a national security perspective because it’s harder to knock down huge swathes of the country at once. I wish we could do something similar but I think that ship has sailed.

  • ‘Fukushima” WASN’T a nuclear disaster – it was an earthquake plus tsunami disaster. The REAL disaster was the handling of the Fukushima residents as the Japanese government went into “nuclear panic”. Note that the ‘panic’ that killed people is very similar to the ‘panic’ being spread about a not-very-fatal Corona virus pandemic.

    • Russ Wood- I would disagree. State level nuclear precautions aren’t panic, at least not in Japan. They have lessons from Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and have put practicalities in place. While those aren’t one for one, the physical after effects are. Also, Chernobyl wasn’t that long ago….the elderly in Japan volunteered to clean up Fukashima so that the young were spared radiation exposure. Not tracking your Covid correlation.

    • @Russ Wood I didn’t say it was a nuclear disaster, it certainly wasn’t in the way Chernobyl and TMI (among others) were, that’s for sure. But even having “natural causes” the whole thing ended up in a nuclear disaster all the same, in a country that promote(d) nuclear energy and is still highly dependent on it, and showed vulnerabilities.

      If a coal plant explodes, no one cares much because there’s no leakage and consequences are minor and contained as compared to a nuclear disaster, whatever the cause. This have people scared and thinking nuclear is unsafe, when in fact it’s the opposite.

  • I enjoyed the article as where we are, the Gov just don’t have any back up plan, so we’re on our own.
    I’m noticing increasing reference to Nuke Fusion, but I think it won’t be ready in our lifetime, so the only hope would be the Russian type ships selling nuke power, which looks cool, and it seems they would just hook up to the grid.
    Green energy is proving quite laughable as Texas found out, and analysis of the ‘green-ness’ and cost/environmental effectiveness of biofuels and wind farms & solar panels raises more questions than it answers.

    Being a bit of a glass half empty type, and NOT any form of scientist or professional,, I’ve always planned for eventualities like these to the amusement of family, friends & neighbours. But we get regular outages.

    I have several classic Aladdin Kerosene lamps, heaters & cooking equipment, with candles for emergency outages. A good reserve. Wicks & spares are also readily available.
    Kerosene sells at well below $1/pint at the mo and should last 3-4 hours/pint. I would recommend 2-3 6 gallon poly drums would last a month if one of each was running for 3-4 hours/day.
    Ebay always has good auctions for the hardware.
    Propane fuelled lamps/cookers/heaters are OK but more expensive to run
    After that it’s wood, coal, peat, but for general energy a generator is a real asset, A 6kVA diesel runs for 3hours on a gallon, but lights are dim if the freezer cuts in, so best switch freezer off until a dedicated time slot doesn’t screw up the home. Modern Freezers have a two day safety margin if no power if door/lid is kept closed, so a 3 hour dedicated boost in daytime would play it forward a day.

  • In a lot of the situations listed (Texas, California, etc.) a lot of these “problems” are man made. Funny enough they are the results of the government/people of the states they live in. Shutting down the grid to avoid fires because either poor maintenance or the PUC’s forcing regulation which kills companies making money at the expense of cheap power. “Green Push” puts kibosh on dirtier power generation (coal or natural gas) or nuclear power (3 mile Island, Japan, Chernobyl) So what’s it going to be? Do we want to have electrical power or not? We, being the people want what we want, we elect who we elect and Voila! A big freaking overcomplicated non-sensical strategy (or lack thereof). In today’s climate (no pub intended) this is not going to be solved. Especially not by Uncle Sugar! I am a big fan of states rights. Each state should be left to figure it out based on what the citizens want and use solutions that they have to live with. The citizens who elect their local representatives and approve state laws can hold the local politicians responsible. Now as far as SHTF…that is on me to figure out (or not). I am responsible for that. I have my solutions in place and so far (including the great Texas Freeze) and knock on wood we (my family) did pretty good and will continue to be fine. People who do not take PERSONAL responsibility? Well I feel for you, but…you need to do better. Start planning…there is plethora of information available to you to figure it out (including this website)

    As far as the rest of the world goes…Meh…

  • Good article.
    We’ve been without power for 15 months now. All winter I’ve used a small fridge sitting out on my front porch to keep food cool. My big fridge will hold cool if not opened often and the gas generator is run about 2 hours each day. A gallon of gas will do that for 4 to 6 days depending on how close I watch the time. I havent actually used it much.. During run time I charge a lamp and phone and hubs watches evening news and a favorite program. I can run the washing machine and we use a lamp. Quiet evenings with an oil lamp are really quite nice. We play dominoes or talk. Sometimes I read.
    That is the simple but workable patern we’ve gotten into.

    I have been buying solar panels, charge controllers, inverters, batteries and miscellaneous things toward going solar again. Loved it but I did have to keep and eye on things and clean snow off of the ground mounted panels. At 74 this great grandma isn’t going roof mount.

    We have oil lamps, a gravity fed pellet rocket stove that can remove the pellet hopper and burn wood or with the hopper i can burn chips from my wood chipper. I cook on the heat collector when we use the stove for heat. I have a propane Cookstown but it sits unused all winter. Lol most of the summer too. I cook outside on a homemade BBQ burning wood pruning from the trees or sometimes a bag of charcoal.

    There are 2 wells. One on commercial power and one as a back up with a manual winch on it.
    I can also charge my phone slowly with a small solar panel. It would also charge the camp lantern I read by at night or use to get around after dark. we have a propane heater in the bedroom with a sensor for the air quality. If too much carbon dioxide builds up it shuts off.
    I’m refurbishing a treadle sewing machine, gathering material to repurpose as a “new” chicken coop, planing a tiny room for a power controll room, and a storage room for barrels of grain for the ducks and chickens and pellets for the rabbits.

    The rabbit poop is a cold fertilizer. It goes straight on the garden as is. The fowel dropping have to be composted. That doesn’t take electricity.

    I have 7 330 gallon caged water containers that will be set on platforms so gravity will power their use in the garden and orchard. I have a pond pump and a solar panel, inverter, and 2 6v deepcycle batteries to pump water if needed from any container. Most will be high enough to water the things where they are placed without using a pump. If we dropped the commercial electrical connection I could hook up solar power right now on the well. I figure to do that soon. Then the containers will be a must. Pump water mostly during the day to fill the containers. Ordinary household use can run on battery power. ie wash a sinkful of dishes, get a drink, flush toilets et. No dishwasher in my home.

    Actually we are doing fine as is but soon I’ll be required to have electricity to keep my husband at home and care for him. He has Alzheimers and is on his second pacemaker. He’s getting unsteady on his feet. He uses my old cane or a walker. Soon he will use my transfer chair. The state thinks they have to be involved in everything.

    I have storm windows. Lots of windows so for cooling w e use cross drafts. With power I could hook up either a small air-conditioned or a water cooler at a window. We have both.
    The hardest part of not having power was getting use to that initially. Now its a relaxed way of life. When I get the solar hooked up it will be a luxury. Not a necessity.

  • If only we had refrigeration equipment for the home that could get by with running just 60 minutes a day. Maybe a smart person will come up with refrigerator coatings that people can apply at home that will be non-toxic and long-lasting but also increase the R-value by 15% If they could do that, it would probably reduce the nationall power bill significantly. Heck, if everyone cleaned their refrigerator door seals once a month, that would be 2%, right there. Air leakage causes efficiency loss and leaky seals is how the magic happens.

  • “The revolution is one of those deep-running movements even governments, institutions, or the market have little authority over”-

    This “revolution” is being pushed/forced on us by the left fanatics and the lefty government currently.
    Here in the USA “movement and deep running” are fallacy.
    Greenies want this, just another socialist move to marginalize, divide and distract.
    It’s actually a part on the UN agenda 2030, including mega cities and eventually removing access to 3/4 of US land to regular people.
    Read up on it, agenda 2030 formally the failed agenda 21 or agenda 2012

    • @Horse,

      I never heard of a left movement for people’s independence. Its usually the opposite, more centralization and the population dependence on central power.

      I’m not saying this in reference to the government, indeed if you look at their agenda most of the initiatives proposed work in one way or another to reduce independence from a centralized power. But I don’t trust governments, any government.

      Bebendo someone becomes less dependent of the system by being able to generate its own electricity, purify its own water, cultivate and eat one’s own food or 3D-print one’s own products, then this someone is going agains that. This is happening and it’s a bottom-up movement rather than top-down.

  • great article. I think to biggest change is to decrease demand by 75% or more. Much of the energy we use is for our lifestyle choices which are very wasteful.

  • Sorry been hearing about peak oil for 40 years, the population bomb, acid rain and let’s not forget about the next ice age of the 70’s. Many have been working on the energy problem solar to the free energy project. We have all we need it’s about the environmental laws that seem to work better for the big guys and not for the little guy.

    • @OldIron

      True, I’ve been hearing about oil ending for decades. Funny enough I personally never thought the fossils would dry out or be replaced, at least not in my lifetime. But I do believe the market can force a change, or be forced into one, for whatever reason.

      Fossils will still be used, for energy and also production of goods and things (plastics, solvents, paints and others), maybe for centuries ahead.

      But it’s all a matter of “incentive”, just look at what the lack of incentive from state-subsidized uranium mining did to the mining and production in U.S., Canada and other western countries. Something similar could happen to oil, and lets not forget there’s also the effects of the pandemic.

  • Short of “Science fiction ” no renewable, alternative, “green” energy can provide the bang for the buck that fossil fuel does.

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