Stuart McMillen, an Australian comic artist, recently released a new comic about Buckminster Fuller’s idea that we all have thousands of “energy slaves” working for us in the form of finite fossil fuels. I particularly enjoyed these two slides which show how we are deluding ourselves into thinking that our unsustainable lifestyle, fueled by a one-shot expenditure of millions of years of stored sunlight is somehow “normal”:
It’s interesting that Buckminster Fuller calculated that the average person working full time could generate the equivalent of 14 liters (3.7 gallons) of gasoline per year. As I showed in my post last week, global oil production is about 4.5 barrels per capita per year (715 liters). It’s like there are 50 energy slave for every person on earth (and that’s just oil and doesn’t include gas and coal). But then of course a small fraction of the people in the world have thousands of energy slaves while the vast number of people have far less than 1 energy slave. When you consider that we have probably reached peak net oil per capital (after accounting for declining EROEI), we’ll all have fewer energy slaves going forward, forcing us into a more sustainable lifestyle.
Check out the comic here:
Also, prior to this comic, Stuart McMillen also drew a fantastic comic on peak oil, which you should check out here: