COLUMN •• CARLOS CUELLAR BROWN - 7 May 2012
Living soil past Petroleum man
Groggy and still winking from jet-lag, the chair of the plane was stifling in the air traveling west over the Atlantic. The scratchy speakers interrupted with the voice of the captain announcing heavy turbulence.
I had the noisy sensation of a jerky ride; 3 days at the energy crisis convention in Berlin had left me exhausted. Buckled in and dozing off into lucid dreaming, I saw myself lurking over the news stand in the “press quarter” along Koch Street. The head lines of “The Local” read “Petroleum Man in the Pits.” “Barrel of Light Oil Reaches 45 thousand Yen.” It is the year 2025 and the effects of peak oil along with obsessive reliance on fossil fuel have brought the agro industrial apparatus to a grinding halt. Years of erosion to the top soil due to intense mechanical industrial plowing, monocultures and the spread of transgenic seeds, threaten our chances to survive. Restoring denatured soils, woodlands and forest will take generations.
I could still hear the keynote speaker opening remark: “To replace the current agro industrial food production we would need the equivalent of 22 billion humans working around the clock.”
Can you imagine the magnitude of this glitch……