Thursday, October 12, 2006

Introducing Richard Heinberg: Atlanta October 11th, 2006

Welcome to Peak Oil: Challenges and Opportunities at the end of Cheap Petroleum--a presentation by Richard Heinberg. My name is Liz Logan, and I am the Organizer for Atlanta Beyond Oil.

If you would have told me eighteen months ago that I would be standing here introducing Richard Heinberg, I would have said you were crazy. When my friends first told me about peak oil, I stuck my fingers in my ears and said "la, la, la, I can't hear you!" I was totally resistant to the idea.

Since I started my peak oil journey, I discovered that people had all kinds of crazy reactions. People told me that they sat at the computer for months reading everything they could find about it, or they began to obsessively make lists of all the supplies that they would need to stock up on.

As we shared our stories, something became obvious to us. Learning about peak oil can have a profound effect on your life. It requires you to rethink things that you may have taken for granted.

It is not a comfortable process. For some of us it meant dusting off our critical thinking skills and learning to read graphs and get comfortable with numbers. For others it meant going through an emotional upheaval.

And ultimately, we are all faced with the question: what can we do to prepare for the energy transition?

No matter where you are in your journey, whether this is your first introduction or you have been grappling with this for a while, you will get something out of Richard's presentation tonight. He will explain the problem, but also offer a solution.

Richard has dedicated his life to increasing the energy literacy of our nation. He has written seven books that have been translated into seven languages. We are offering three of them for sale. They include:

1 The Party's Over: War and the Fate of Industrial Societies. This gives some scientific background about peak oil. The latest edition has been substantially revised.

2 Powerdown: Options and Actions for a Post-Carbon World, which lays out the paths that are before us and the consequences of each choice. It is his most political book.

3 His latest book is The Oil Depletion Protocol: A Plan to Avert Oil Wars, Terrorism, and Economic Collapse. It explains the Oil Depletion Protocol, which he will tell you about tonight.

Richard is not only an author, he is also a journalist, educator, editor, lecturer and a Core Faculty member of New College of California. He teaches a course on "Culture, Ecology and Sustainable Community."

He is featured in the film The End of Suburbia, which is many people's introduction to peak oil. He's appeared on national radio and television in eight countries, and has been quoted in Time Magazine, Reuters, and the Associated press. Last month, in a profile in the New Yorker, Bill Clinton told the reporter that he was reading Richard's book The Party's Over.

Richard is also my hero. We are thrilled to have him here and delighted that you could attend.

Please join me in welcoming--Richard Heinberg.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Report on the Energy Transition Summit in CA

I have a report from someone who went to the recent Energy Transition Summit. She is relatively new to the information about peak oil, so looks at this event with fresh eyes. She writes:

I learned from your blog that your group in Atlanta, GA is sponsoring a speech by Richard Heinberg, so I attended an event to hear him.

On Friday, Sep 29th Richard Heinberg was the keynote speaker at the Energy Transition Summit in Santa Rosa, CA. His speech was well illustrated on the screen and seamlessly presented. He simplified a complex subject and made a concise presentation in a clear and articulate manner which saved me many hours of reading and study. His presentation was factual, but his concluding statements about the dire consequences to ourselves and the planet were passionate and motivating. He received a standing ovation.

There were about 150 people in the audience who spoke to each other in interactive dyads and who submitted written questions to the panel. There were many sponsors. Some were vendors and had informational tables.

Lead Sponsors:

  • Energy Transition Team
  • Leadership Institute for Ecology and the Economy, ,
  • Sonoma County Climate Protection Campaign,
  • PG&E,
  • the Livability Project, and
  • Whole Foods.

The panelist had good information about what each of their groups is doing. They encouraged others to get people involved by being positive, to be enthusiastic, and to tell people how much fun it is to work with a wonderful group of new friends.

I personally think that's all good, rather than scaring people, which is probably a turn off, but hardly anyone I know knows what Peak Oil means and the titles of events, books, organizations, committees and groups don't help to explain. The names and titles are meaningful to people already involved, but are cryptic to others. We need a few catchy words to capture the imagination of those not in the know so they will attend an Energy Transition Summits like the one in Santa Rosa and hear Peak Oil explained by Richard Heinberg and the other participants.

~Sonja B.

Thanks very much Sonja B. ! And she brings up a good point--how do we communicate what we are about in just a few words? We need to bridge the gap between jargon and mainstream.

Heinberg on Peak Oil: Challenges and Opportunities at the End of Cheap Petroleum

Modern civilization is dependent on cheap, plentiful energy. But we now face a critical moment in human history: Peak Oil, where global petroleum production enters an irreversible decline, even as demand soars. Dwindling resources and increasing international competition for the remaining supplies have led many experts to issue disturbing warnings about the coming decade.

Richard Heinberg, widely regarded as America’s foremost Peak Oil educator, will share the most up-to-date research on the timing and consequences of global peak oil, and the crucial preparations that must be undertaken, both locally and internationally. His new book, The Oil Depletion Protocol, outlines a practical, humane strategy for addressing petroleum’s inevitable decline.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006
7:30 pm
Trinity United Methodist Church
265 Washington Street SW, Atlanta
(opposite City Hall)
Map Directions
$5 suggested donation
($3 for students/seniors)

Richard Heinberg is a journalist, educator, editor, lecturer and a core faculty member at New College of California in San Francisco, where he teaches courses on Energy and Society and Culture, Ecology and Sustainable Community.

His six books include:

The Party’s Over: Oil, War and the Fate of Industrial Societies
Powerdown: Options and Actions for a Post-Carbon World
The Oil Depletion Protocol: A Plan to Avert Oil Wars, Terrorism and Economic Collapse

Heinberg’s essays and articles have appeared in many journals and he has given over 200 lectures on oil depletion to a wide variety of audiences. He appears prominently in the documentary The End of Suburbia.

This event is sponsored by Atlanta Beyond Oil,a local organization dedicated to preparing for a changed energy world.
For information, email
Checkout our Meetup website.

Bicycling, public transportation or walking to this event is encouraged!