Thomas Homer-Dixon, in his fascinating The Upside of Down: Catastrophe, Creativity and the Renewal of civilization (Knopf, 2006) reflected upon the fall of Rome and its civilization and other disasters to identify how and why a society could break down and how to avoid such a fate. In a nutshell, he shows that five tectonic stresses (population, energy, environment, climate and economy) accumulate, which then combine with two multipliers (the rising speed and global connectivity, and the escalating destructive power of small groups) “to make breakdown more likely, widespread, and severe.” Among these five tectonic stresses, he underlines that energy is particularly important because it is a master resource. Indeed, energy is embedded in every parcel of our contemporary lives, from every step of the food chain, to transportation, industry, trade and availability of goods, defense, etc.
Considering the crucial importance of energy for our civilization and the impact of its use on the environment, it is necessary to understand the issue at hand, and to keep abreast of developments in this area to be able to anticipate potential evolutions and how they will affect us and more generally all actors.
Furthermore you can find specific raw monitoring and scanning: