president’s wife. The picture emerging from global is that all humans on Earth today are descended from a founder population that lived in East Africa, again near the Horn of Africa, around 60-50 kya. Geneticists think that the founder population amounted to about five thousand people, and of that population, a few hundred humans at most left Africa about 60-50 kya and conquered the world. If any people ever lived up to , it would have been them. It may have been because they were members of the first primate species to master language. Chapter summary:Anthropologists and primate researchers , but relatively recent scientific findings have disproven that notion. , and it is more sophisticated with great apes. It took a few million years after the human/chimp split for our ancestors to learn to , and that culture then spread widely in Africa. The , , and were probably all closely related and at least partly interdependent, but little seemed to change . Then the and possessed a larger brain, and new tools and behaviors are evident . The timeframes continually shrank between major events in the human journey. Only 200 thousand years later, and , and new behaviors are in evidence. Only 100 thousand years after that, anatomically modern humans appeared. Only 30 thousand years after that, about 170 kya, , probably due to necessity, where life once again was eked out on the margins, and those humans may have decorated their bodies. About 100 kya, innovation seems to have accelerated again, and by 75-60 kya there is evidence of . Needles and perhaps even arrowheads first appeared about 60 kya. There is no doubt among scientists that members of made those advances, and their artifacts provided evidence of increasing cultural and technical sophistication, which soon left Neanderthals and all other land animals far behind. About 75-70 kya, a , and there is controversy today whether that eruption was partly responsible for the that passed through not long afterward.
There are , other than for people to get out of the way and stop suppressing FE and its attendant technologies, either consciously, as the , or mindlessly, as when the masses those trying to introduce FE and prevent , or unless there is immediate personal gain for doing so.In the end, is the most meaningful standard of living measure. Declining total available energy and declining EROI contribute to a declining energy surplus. Most people have some understanding of hunger, and if they have experienced blackouts, brownouts, or gas shortages, they have keenly felt the loss of energy. But the decline of industrial civilization has many other signs that comfortable Westerners can have difficulty grasping, and the following examples are intended to make it clearer.As previously stated, shale oil and tar sands have abysmally low EROIs, which are , but are presented today as some kind of magic answer to the USA's energy problems (in 2015, the oil price collapse was caused by the easy money policies of the central banks, and ). But, what does that mean, as far as what a person could witness in such a declining civilization? The impact of Canada's tar sands operations can provide a preview. Not only do Canada's tar sands operations (Source: Wikimedia Commons – google "tar sands Mordor" and view the image results):but the pollution will inflict an awesome price on Canada, as the tar sands region becomes a "national sacrifice zone." That low EROI reflects highly detrimental impacts. A huge proportion of Canada's natural gas supply will be needed for , and multi-billion-dollar pipelines and other infrastructure projects are proceeding (but delayed in 2015). Beleaguered Canadian Native American nations are overwhelmed by the industrial initiatives, which are . I heard from local friends in the summer of 2014 that the projected pipeline to the nearby waters of British Columbia will present great environmental risk, and the only question is not disastrous oil spills will happen, but , , and they will be. One of Earth's most diverse aquatic ecosystems will be put at risk (Puget Sound is in second place, next to the Great Barrier Reef).The energy disasters may only be previews of future events. The USA's invasion of Iraq and its military presence in the Middle East is all about controlling Earth's remaining high-EROI oil. . Ever since the , the West has been invading and meddling in the oil-rich Middle East.The irony of all this is that and humanity does not have to head down this path where conventional energy prices continue to increase as we deplete the last remaining resources. The choice is really ours; do we continue down this path of declining living standards for the majority of humanity or move into a world of energy abundance for all on Earth? Some of us have been trying to rectify the situation, which is the next chapter's subject. Chapter summary:In this essay’s , I reviewed my journey and touched on Dennis Lee’s, who was my partner during my days of pursuing FE, and that chapter also mentioned amazing explorations. This chapter will dig a little deeper into our experiences. Our odysseys into alternative and free energy all began at about the same time: in 1973-1974, during the , which ended the . Mine started when my first professional mentor invented what was hailed as the , which he invented in about 1968 and began to patent just before the crisis, and it . During that furor, I , spent absorbing its art and culture, and began . Dennis is 12 years older than I am, and as I dreamed of changing the energy industry, he had his in the energy crisis's mayhem. Brian began his alternative energy pursuit around the same time, as he engaged in activism and .
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