This is one of the more straightforward parts of our plan. I don’t see how oil can be anything but finite. Whilst the planet will never run out completely, at some point the amount of energy we extract will be about the same as the energy it took to extract it. At that point, we are effectively out! One of our main uses of oil, apart from as plastic, is transport so our challenge is to spend a year without using the car.
At first we thought we’d just sell our car but it turns out that we own the most boring car known to man and the only thing that we would get from a used car salesman for it would be a condenscending giggle! So instead we have decided to use it as a community car-share asset through a group called CarNextDoor. This way we’ll not only decrease our impact through not using the car but we might also persuade others to hire our car cheaply rather than buying another one.
We’ll also try to think about the nature of travelling. It’s weird to think how wedded we are to this notion that we need to go far away from our own space in order to relax. At what point did that become normal? I’m the first to admit that if you get away from your house then you also get away from all your routine work and life doldrums…but how far do you need to be to be “away”? 10km….100km…..1000km!
We’re going to see how we can make the way we travel, the way we holiday and our thoughts about transport less taxing on the environment….and hopefully have some fun along the way!
Oddly enough some of it came from a love of nature and a dislike of crowded cities. So people would drive to see nature (after building highways through it) and build houses out where they could wake up to nature. And when everyone does that, enabled by the car, you get suburbia and nature gets paved over.
James Kunstler (like http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q1ZeXnmDZMQ) is fun to watch in action on this. As is the documentary “The end of suburbia”.
nsfw warning on the above (he swears a bit) and it’s more about urban design since it’s an overview, though he does discuss the “flight from the city” at about 12:40.