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Dawn of Everything Conclusion

Dawn of Everything Conclusion

Preface. Clearly for their conclusion to make sense you’ll need to read the book and see the evidence for yourself.  Since they challenge just about all of the ideas currently in fashion, you can find some pretty damning reviews of their book, but do not believe them, the several I’ve read entirely misstate what was actually written, the old straw man fallacy of inventing something that they didn’t say and shooting it down.  And their attitude is not at all “we’re right, you’re wrong”, no, quite the opposite.  They’re hoping to stir up fruitful avenues of inquiry, different and more meaningful ways of looking at the past, and my hope is that rather than try to invent a steady state / degrowth economy, that ecologists will team up with experts in anthropology and archeology to discuss the best sustainable ways of life from the past, how to avoid authoritarian kings, brutal agricultural societies, and more.

Here is part of their summary, and at greater length below (though they are constantly summarizing arguments throughout the book, another reason you need to actually read it).

“In trying to synthesize what we’ve learned over the last 30 years, we asked question such as “what happens if we accord significance to the 5,000 years in which cereal domestication did not lead to the emergence of pampered aristocracies, standing armies or debt peonage, rather than just the 5,000 years in which it did? What happens if we treat the rejection of urban life, or of slavery, in certain times and places as something just as significant as the emergence of those same phenomena in others?

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Corn for ethanol & soy for biodiesel tremendously destructive

Corn for ethanol & soy for biodiesel tremendously destructive

The Green Gold Rush to make biodiesel has begun in earnest in California. It would not be profitable without subsidies from LCFS credits, federal RIN D5 credits, and  Blenders Tax Credits at $3.32 a gallon, which is enough to cover production costs, according to Van der Wal, biofuel advisor at Stratas Advisors in Singapore.

He said “It’s a mind-boggling amount of money, you will make a lot of money as long as all these subsidies come in.” Without this money, biodiesel is an energy sink, with very low EROI.

Biodiesel competitors already in the market have already locked up much of the tallow, cooking oil, and other resources Marathon and Phillips hope to use (Bloomberg 2021). And California doesn’t grow many soybeans because of water shortages, so importing soy will increase CO2 via transportation emissions here and the CO2 from tractors and trucks in other countries or the U.S.

Corn and soybeans are very destructive to the environment, eroding more topsoil, causing more pollution, global warming, acidification, eutrophication of water, water treatment costs, fish kills, and biodiversity loss than most other crops (Powers 2005, Troeh and Thompson 2005, Zattara and Aizen2019).

Food versus fuel. Over 40% of the corn crop becomes fuel, not food at a time when 43 million Americans need help with food stamps (USDA 2020) and the high unemployment rate from Covid-19 could drive the need for food aid up to over 54 million people (Lee 2020).

Too many pesticides.  Corn and soy are especially destructive because they need a lot of pesticides. Of all pesticide use on crops, corn’s share is 39.5% and soybeans 22% (Mclaughlin and Walsh 1998, Padgitt et al. 2000, Pimentel 2003, Patzek 2004, Fernandez-Cornejo et al. 2014). I don’t want to say they have a drinking problem, but shall we say they have a “dependency problem.”…

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Implications of Refinery closures for Homeland Security & critical infrastructure safety

Implications of Refinery closures for Homeland Security & critical infrastructure safety

Preface. The talk of electric vehicles saving the world from greenhouse gases is nonsense, a red herring to distract everyone from what’s really at stake, and from the material requirements to build them with rare earth and other scarce minerals, and the immense amount of fossil energy required to make them in mining, smelting, manufacture and transport of thousands of parts, and so on. But just focusing on greenhouse gases is a very sneaky way to ignore myriad obstacles.

Cars are just 14% of emissions, and EV only replace gasoline, not the diesel essential for heavy-duty trucks, locomotives, and ships, the kerosene for airplanes, the lubricants essential for all motors, including EV, or the road asphalt EV and diesel trucks move on. EV are less than 1% of cars and always will be, they are too expensive for all but the richest 5% who also have garages and want one and live in places where heat and cold won’t reduce performance and battery life.

A National Laboratory scientist on Chinese gasoline, refining, and petroleum products:

Over the years I have taken the opportunity to ask oil companies about how they would deal with a demand slate stripped of it gasoline fraction, given that that is about the only fraction being targeted by electrification. Chevron’s answer was fairly simple: “It’s our profit center so we’d probably close the refinery” (thus no oil products). Two years in a row I asked the same question to Exxon during some briefings, and both times they said they were “looking into it” and would get back to me (but they never did)…

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Food shortages as the energy crisis grows and supply chains break?

Food shortages as the energy crisis grows and supply chains break?

Preface. This is a long preface followed by two articles about how supply chains and complex tractors may be affected by energy shortages and consequent supply chain failures in the future.Which we’re already seeing as massive numbers of ships sit offshore waiting to be unloaded, and a shortage of truckers to deliver goods when they do arrive.

Supply chain failures will only get worse, affecting food supply and making the prediction of 3 billion more people by 2050 unlikely.  We are running out of time to replace fossil fuels with something else that is unknown and definitely not commercial for transportation, manufacturing and other essential services and products. Even the electric grid needs natural gas to stay up, no matter how many wind turbines or solar panels are built (Friedemann 2016).

The reason time is running out is that global conventional oil, where 90% of our petroleum comes from, peaked in 2008 (EIA 2018 page 45), and world oil production of both conventional and unconventional oil in 2018 (EIA 2020).

In the unlikely event you don’t know why this is scary, consider that we are alive today thanks to heavy-duty transportation, which runs almost exclusively on diesel, four billion of us are alive due to finite natural gas derived fertilizer, 500,000 products are made out of fossil fuels, and much of our essential manufacturing (cement, steel, metals, ceramics, glass, microchips) depend on the high heat of fossil fuels. There is not much time to come up with processes to electrify or use hydrogen to replace fossil fuels, which don’t exist yet, let alone rebuild trillions of dollars of infrastructure and a new unknown energy distribution system, triple the electric grid transmission system, and replace hundreds of millions of vehicles and equipment to run on “something else” (Friedemann 2021).

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Limits to Growth: Natural gas fertilizer that feeds 4 billion of us

Limits to Growth: Natural gas fertilizer that feeds 4 billion of us

Preface.  In chapter 4 of my book “Life After Fossil Fuels: A Reality Check on Alternative Energy“, I explain how it came to be that fertilizer is made out of natural gas, using the energy of natural gas, and why it allows at least 4 billion of us to be alive. Yet natural gas is finite. And now there are shortages due to high prices.  In the U.S. Congress voted to allow natural gas to be exported several years ago, partly to help Europeans not become dependent on Russian gas and fall into their sphere of influence.  But now it’s costing farmers all over the world so much many will go out of business. In the U.S., especially small farmers who don’t get subsidies like the huge farms do.

High Natural gas prices in the news:

2022 Rising price of fertilizer is forcing NC farmers out of the business. North Carolina farmers say the cost of fertilizer has tripled over the past two years and is threatening to drive smaller farms out of the business entirely. The spike in cost has left family farms looking for ways to stay afloat while still producing enough food. As one of the most essential tools in agriculture, fertilizer makes up 15% of all farming costs in the U.S., according to the American Farm Bureau Federation. But since September 2020, the cost of fertilizer nationwide has spiked up to 300% as demand for its primary ingredients like ammonia and liquid nitrogen has soared. One farmer said that “Now everybody’s going to chicken litter, and we can’t even find the chicken litter now to do for our farm.”

***

2021 This Chemical Is in Short Supply, and the Whole World Feels It. New York Times.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

As oil declines, the threat of a greenhouse earth & extinction from climate change decline

As oil declines, the threat of a greenhouse earth & extinction from climate change decline

Carbon sequestration, wind, solar, geo-engineering, and other remedies are trivial compared to the effect declining fossil fuels will have on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The natural rate of decline today is 8.5%, exponentially increasing, and offset by 4%, so the gap will continue to grow wider, with petroleum eventually decreasing by 6% and more a year in the future.

Climate change is also a symptom of overpopulation and overshoot of the planet’s carrying capacity. If family planning became the green new deal, there would be a chance for all problems to be reduced in severity.   “Renewables” are certainly not a solution since transportation and manufacturing can’t be electrified or run on anything else (see Chapter 6 and 9 of “Life After Fossil Fuels”).

Climate models developed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) show a range of greenhouse gas trajectories. The worst-case IPCC scenario is Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP) 8.5. This predicts a rise of temperature by 5°C, and this is the scenario you read about daily in the newspapers as being the most likely “business as usual” future. But lately many scientists think around 3 °C (RCP 4.5 to RCP 6) is more likely (Hausfather and Peters 2020).

Geologists have a far more optimistic outlook.  Using realistic fossil fuel reserves in climate models, they predict an outcome from RCP 2.6 to RCP 4.5 (Doose 2004; Kharecha and Hansen 2008; Brecha 2008; Nel 2011; Chiari and Zecca 2011; Ward et al. 2011, 2012; Höök and Tang 2013; Mohr et al. 2015; Capellán-Pérez et al. 2016; Murray 2016; Wang et al. 2017).

The IPCC scenarios do not model fossil fuels at all, since their assumption is that we will be burning fossil fuels, at exponentially increasing amounts until 2400. The IPCC RCP 8.5 hothouse world scenario assumes a fivefold increase in coal use by 2100 (Ritchie and Dowlatabadi 2017), even though coal production may have peaked, or will soon (see chapter 6 of “Life After Fossil Fuels”).

So rather than becoming crisply well-done, perhaps we’ll scrape by with a medium rare sunburn.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Oil shocks and the potential for crisis U.S. House 2007

Oil shocks and the potential for crisis U.S. House 2007

oil shockwave 2007 oil on firePreface. U.S. Congressional hearings have boasted of America’s energy independence for several years.  For those of you with a longer view, and doubts about the shale “fracked” oil revolution, here’s a house hearing about oil dependence.  Much of the testimony revolves around an exercise called “Oil ShockWave”, which Admiral Blair describes as “an executive crisis simulation to illustrate the strategic dangers of oil dependence. Oil Shockwave confronts a mock U.S. cabinet with highly plausible geopolitical crises that trigger sharp increases in oil prices. Participants must grapple with the economic and strategic consequences of this ‘oil shock’ and formulate a response plan for the nation.” Some of the participants were Robert Rubin, former secretary of the Treasury, Carol Browner (former head of the EPA), Richard Armitage former deputy secretary of state, Retired General Abizaid, John Lehman, former secretary of the Navy, Gene Sperling former national economic adivisor, Phhilip D. Zelikow executive director of the 9/11 commission, and Daniel Yergin.

The best “solution” offered is by Edward Markey of Massachusetts: …a nationwide oil savings plan saving of 10 million barrels of oil per day by 2031. Heinberg proposed this in his 2006 book “The Oil Depletion Protocol: A Plan to Avert Oil Wars, Terrorism and Economic Collapse“.  Ah well, with peak oil likely in 2018 (Peak Oil is Here!), we’ll be forced to reduce consumption without having made plans.  Though I fear the plan is War: the 1980 Carter Doctrine states that the United States will use military force, if necessary, to defend its national interests in the Persian Gulf.

Some of the interesting bits include:

ADMIRAL DENNIS BLAIR, USN (RET.), Former Commander in Chief, U.S. PACIFIC COMMAND

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Food shortages as the energy crisis grows and supply chains break?

Food shortages as the energy crisis grows and supply chains break?

Preface. This is a long preface followed by two articles about how supply chains and complex tractors may be affected by energy shortages and consequent supply chain failures in the future.Which we’re already seeing as massive numbers of ships sit offshore waiting to be unloaded, and a shortage of truckers to deliver goods when they do arrive.

Supply chain failures will only get worse, affecting food supply and making the prediction of 3 billion more people by 2050 unlikely.  We are running out of time to replace fossil fuels with something else that is unknown and definitely not commercial for transportation, manufacturing and other essential services and products. Even the electric grid needs natural gas to stay up, no matter how many wind turbines or solar panels are built (Friedemann 2016).

The reason time is running out is that global conventional oil, where 90% of our petroleum comes from, peaked in 2008 (EIA 2018 page 45), and world oil production of both conventional and unconventional oil in 2018 (EIA 2020).

In the unlikely event you don’t know why this is scary, consider that we are alive today thanks to heavy-duty transportation, which runs almost exclusively on diesel, four billion of us are alive due to finite natural gas derived fertilizer, 500,000 products are made out of fossil fuels, and much of our essential manufacturing (cement, steel, metals, ceramics, glass, microchips) depend on the high heat of fossil fuels. There is not much time to come up with processes to electrify or use hydrogen to replace fossil fuels, which don’t exist yet, let alone rebuild trillions of dollars of infrastructure and a new unknown energy distribution system, triple the electric grid transmission system, and replace hundreds of millions of vehicles and equipment to run on “something else” (Friedemann 2021).

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Why liquefied coal (CTL) and natural gas (GTL) can’t replace oil

Why liquefied coal (CTL) and natural gas (GTL) can’t replace oil

Preface. Here are just a few of the reasons why we aren’t likely to convert enough coal to diesel to matter as oil decines (see Chapter 11 Liquefied Coal: There Goes the Neighborhood, the Water, and the Air for more details on this in When Trucks Stop Running: Energy and the Future of Transportation)

It is not likely much coal will be converted to diesel, because if all global coal production were converted to liquid coal, perhaps 17 million barrels a day (Mb/d) could be produced. That amounts to 22 % of current world oil production. If more efficient liquefaction technologies came along, and coal now used to generate electricity and make cement, steel, aluminum, paper, and chemicals were all diverted to make liquid fuels, as much as 54 Mb/d could be made. But roughly 17 Mb/d is more likely because diverting most or all of the coal from other uses to make CTL is not realistic.  After all, we do need cement and steel to build the CTL coal liquefaction plants, roads, and the trucks and pipelines to transport the CTL itself.

In the U.S. coal production could be doubled to make CTL, but that might cut reserve life in half. In the U.S., there may be 63 years of reserves at current rates of production, but only 31.5 years if we doubled coal production.

The thermal efficiency of liquefaction is roughly 50–60 %; hence, only half the coal energy used in liquefaction will come out as the energy available in the CTL fuel. And there may be other losses. An inconvenient truth about coal is that it is a dirty fuel. If carbon capture and sequestration were to be required, 40 % of the remaining energy in a liquid coal power plant would be consumed.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Is there a long emergency plan for peak oil?

Ever since I first learned about peak oil in 2000, the Master Resource that makes all other resources and activities possible, I’ve wondered what The Plan to cope with its decline and eventual disappearance was. So it wouldn’t be just a long emergency plan, but a permanent emergency plan.

There have indeed been plans: Nixon launched “Project Independence” after the oil shock of 1973 to wean the U.S. from its dependence on imported oil by 1980 with kerogen shale oilhydrogen fuel vehicles, and nuclear power.

When that didn’t pan out, further government attempts were made to find alternatives for fossil fuels, for example (NRC 2009):

  • Richard Nixon’s “Project Independence” (1974)
  • National Renewable Energy Laboratory (1974)
  • Gerald Ford’s “Energy Independence Act” (1975)
  • Energy Policy & Conservation Act (1975) to restrict exports of coal, petroleum products, natural gas, petrochemical feedstocks, and supplies of materials and equipment for the exploration, production, refining, and transportation of energy.
  • Jimmy Carter’s “National Energy Plan” (1977)
  • Department of Energy (1977)
  • Ronald Reagan’s “Energy Security” report (1987)
  • George H.W. Bush’s “National Energy Strategy” (1991)
  • Bill Clinton’s “Federal Energy R&D for the Challenges of the 21st Century” report (1997)
  • George W. Bush’s “Reliable, Affordable, and Environmentally Sound Energy for America’s Future” report (2001).
  • John Kerry’s plan: “Kerry Aims to Reduce Foreign Oil Reliance,” Associated Press (2004).

But Senator Lugar pointed out in 2006 that despite Project Independence and other plans, the world has become more reliant on the three-quarters of reserves concentrated in unstable regions, where the risk of wars over remaining energy supplies will dramatically increase.

Or as Jay Hanson (2004) once wrote: “I am convinced thatafter the PROJECT INDEPENDENCE fiasco, our rulers reached the same conclusion I have: since no solution exists, there is no point in scaring Joe Six-pack…

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Climate change will damage energy infrastructure, costing trillions

Climate change will damage energy infrastructure, costing trillions

PrefaceClimate change and extreme weather will harm oil and gas exploration and production, electric power generation and increase energy demand due to sea level rise, heat, drought, floods, more storms, and blackouts.  Extreme heat and drought will force electric power plants to shut down from lack of cooling water. Our continuing exponentially growing population will increase demand on our falling apart energy infrastructure.  This report says that climate caused disasters are already costing billions of dollars, and in the future, trillions.

Climate change will makes blackouts and brownouts more common. It already is: Rising heat in the West has driven a steep increase in demand for air conditioning, bringing the electric grid down at times. As have wildfires. And as a preventive measure, utilities in California take the grid down for days if high winds are forecast, leaving millions in the dark. In Texas, an ice storm nearly blacked out the electric grid for months (Douglas 2021).

***

USDOE. July 2013.  U.S. Energy Sector Vulnerabilities to Climate Change and Extreme Weather. U. S. Department of Energy.

Summary.  Natural disasters and climate change are already affecting our ability to produce and deliver energy from oil, natural gas, coal.   Climate change will make matters worse:

  1. Energy infrastructure is at or past its lifetime yet expected to operate in ranges it wasn’t designed for.
  2. Heat, drought, and floods reduce power output for both fossil fuel and renewable energy generation. Heat increases wildfires, which reduce power output
  3. Energy infrastructure along the coast is at risk from sea level rise, increasing intensity of storms, and higher storm surge and flooding, potentially disrupting oil and gas production, refining, and distribution, as well as electricity generation and distribution. Sea level rise will flood roads and rail lines, halting receipt or delivery from ships at ports.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Peak Fossil Fuels: overview of world peak oil, peak coal, & peak natural gas

Peak Fossil Fuels: overview of world peak oil, peak coal, & peak natural gas

Source: World gas peaks in 2040 roughly. Delannoy L et al (2021) Assessing Global Long-Term EROI of Gas: A Net-Energy Perspective on the Energy Transition. Energies.  https://doi.org/10.3390/en14165112

Preface. Below are overviews of peak oil, coal, and natural gas, each followed by additional reading material from my book “When Trucks Stop Running: Energy and the Future of Transportation”, which explains why we are unlikely to be able to electrify transportation, or run trucks on anything else besides diesel, and why the electric grid will come down for good when there’s no natural gas to balance wind and solar as well as provide peak power.

And my book Life After Fossil Fuels: A Reality Check on Alternative Energy explains why the manufacturing of cement, steel, smelting of metals, glass, microchips, ceramics and more requires the high heat of fossil fuels to reach up to 3200 F, which can’t be electrified, run on hydrogen or anything else (see chapter 9). Worse yet, even if there were an existing commercial solution, which there isn’t, we are out of time to replace fossil fuels, since oil, the master resource that makes all others possible, probably peaked in 2008 at 69.5 million barrels per day (mb/d) (IEA 2018 p45), or in 2018 (EIA 2020).

The good news is that the worst IPCC projections are less likely to be reached  (see chapter 33 of Life After Fossil Fuels).  And as oil declines exponentially faster, perhaps from now onward, CO2 will decline: About 50% of carbon dioxide emitted by human activity will be removed from the atmosphere within 30 years, and 30% more within a few centuries. The remaining 20% may stay in the atmosphere for many thousands of years (GAO (2014) CLIMATE CHANGE: Energy Infrastructure Risks and Adaptation Efforts GAO-14-74. United States Government Accountability Office).

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Peak oil is here!

Peak oil is here!

Preface. Peak oil is here! The global production of crude oil happened in November of 2018 (EIA 2020), and has declined for four years, enough time to officially declare global peak oil production. Conventional crude oil production leveled off in 2005, and peaked in 2008 at 69.5 million barrels per day (mb/d) according to Europe’s International Energy Agency (IEA 2018 p45). The U.S. Energy Information Agency shows global peak crude oil production in 2018 at 82.9 mb/d because they included unconventional tight oil, oil sands, and deep-sea oil.  Below is a chart created by Tad Patzek from EIA data:

Nor will we ever reach “peak oil demand” because heavy-duty transportation (trucks, locomotives, ships), manufacturing, the 500,000 products made out of petroleum, and natural gas fertilizer that keeps 4 billion of us are utterly dependent on fossil fuels. Even the electric grid depends on fossil fuels to provide two-thirds of the energy, and nearly all of the energy to construct ReBuildables (they are NOT renewable).  This is explained in great detail in my latest book “Life After Fossil Fuels: A Reality Check on Alternative Energy” and previous book” When Trucks Stop Running: Energy and the Future of Transportation

The IEA forecast a supply crunch by 2025 in their rosy and very unrealistic New Policies scenario, which assumes greater efficiencies and alternative fuels and electric cars are adopted (Figure 1). By 2025, with 81% of global oil declining at up to 8% percent a year (Fustier 2016, IEA 2018), 34 mb/d of new output will be needed, and 54 mb/d if facilities aren’t maintained. That is more than three times Saudi Arabian production. The 15 mb/d of predicted U.S. shale isn’t likely — indeed, the IEA shows it declining in the mid-2020s (IEA 2018 Table 3.1).

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

How to fix our inland waterway system

How to fix our inland waterway system

Preface.  As you can see in Table 1 below, water transport is far more energy efficient than land transport, especially once we’re back to muscle power after fossil fuels are gone.

Kilojoules of energy used to carry one ton of cargo one kilometer Transportation mode
50 Oil tankers and bulk cargo ships
100–150 Smaller cargo ships
250–600 Trains
360 Barge
2000–4000 Trucks
30,000 Air freight
55,000 Helicopter

Table 1 Energy efficiency of transportation in kilojoules/ton/kilometer. Source: Smil (2013), Ashby (2015).

To prepare for energy descent, more canals should be created now, while we still have cheap plentiful energy. We’ll also need to keep in mind the maintenance and dredging of canals after fossils as well (De Decker 2018).

The National Academy of Science study (159 pages) found that the selection of waterways projects for authorization has a long history of being driven largely by political and local concerns. The approval and funding process is an irrational, byzantine mess.

***

NRC. 2015. TRB special report 315: funding and managing the U.S. inland waterways system: what policy makers need to know. National Resource Council Transportation research board, National Academy of Sciences.

Inland waterway system stats:

  • The inland waterways system moves 6 to 7 percent of all domestic cargo in terms of total ton-miles, mostly coal, petroleum and petroleum products, food and farm products, chemicals and related products, and crude materials.
  • Inland waterways include more than 36,000 miles of commercially navigable channels and roughly 240 working lock sites.
  • Barges mostly carry energy: coal, crude petroleum, petroleum products, and natural gas based fertilizers

2013 Commodities carried by USACE at http://www.navigationdatacenter.us/wcsc/pdf/pdrgcm13.pdf

  • Tons
  • Millions     Commodity
  • 312.3     Coal                      
  • 418.9     Crude petroleum
  • 508.6     Petroleum products
  • 39.9       Chemical fertilizer
  • 140.6      Chemicals excluding fertilizers
  • 53           Lumber, logs, wood chips, pulp
  • 163.5      Sand, gravel, shells, clay, salt, and slag
  • 85.4        Iron ore, iron, and steel waste and scrap
  • 29.5        Non-ferrous ores and scrap
  • 45           Primary non-metal products
  • 72           Primary metal products
  • 270         Food and food products
  • 121         Manufactured goods
  • 62.3        Unknown and not elsewhere classified products
  • 2,275      TOTAL

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Insect & other BioInvasions

Insect & other BioInvasions

Preface.  Invasive insects that have no predators in the U.S. can only be somewhat reduced with pesticides, which are made out of oil, and sprayed by diesel machinery and transportation.  To prepare for oil decline, more research needs to be done to study native predators as pest control, which takes time since since they might do as much harm as the invasive species.  There are 83 known invasive insects harming forests alone, and far more devouring food crops, all of them developing resistance to whatever pesticides are thrown at them within 5 years on average.

Invasion by non-native insects expected to increase 36% by 2050. Europe is likely to experience the strongest biological invasions, followed by Asia, North America and South America (USDA 2020).

Worldwide, forests are increasingly affected by nonnative insects and diseases, some of which cause substantial tree mortality. Forests in the United States have been invaded by a particularly large number (>450) of tree-feeding pest species, with  41.1% of the total live forest biomass in the conterminous United States is at risk of future loss from just 15 pests. Since forests contribute ~76% of North America’s net terrestrial carbon sequestration, this loss may accelerate climate change (Fei 2019).

Perhaps postcarbon survivors will find yet another solution: eating insects, and why not, over 2 billion people eat bugs as a standard part of their diet (Mishan 2018).

Below are specific species that I’ve run across in the news, clearly hundreds of other species could be added.

* * *

Lambert J (2021) These are the 5 costliest invasive species, causing billions in damages. Science News.

The impact from all invasive species cost the global economy at least $1 trillion since 1970. $149 billion: Aedes mosquitoes (A. albopictus and A. aegypti), $67 billion: Rats, $52 billion: Cats, $19 billion: Termites, $17 billion: Fire Ants

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Olduvai IV: Courage
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Olduvai II: Exodus
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