Episode 41: Disaster Preparation How To’s
You’ve heard of Peak Oil and understand the potential impact on our nation. Now it’s time to delve deeper into some of the major impacts and learn how to prepare. This valuable episode and written transcript outlines what resources are available to educate you on food storage, go bags and product purchases that are an essential investment for your future.
Learn about the new occupations that are arising in this new economy and why a return to farming, medical knowledge and basic life skills are becoming crucial for the next evolution of our planet. This episode is full of detailed information and lots of educational URL’s and resources to allow you to become your own decision maker in this often controversial topic.
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Meredith Medland: You’re listening to “Living Green: Effortless Ecology For Everyday People.” I’m your host, Meredith Medland, and today on our show is André Angelantoni. André is the co-founder of “Post Peak Living” and is also a co-founder of “Post Carbon Morin,” an initiative in Morin County, California that will prepare the county for peak oil.
There are three specific outcomes on our show today. First, as a listener, you will be clear on what peak oil is and when it’s expected to happen. Number two; you’ll know some of the major impacts of peak oil. And number three, you’ll learn how to prepare and what resources are available to you.
Meredith Medland: My name’s Meredith Medland, and you’re listening to “Living Green” and right here I have André Angelantoni. He’s the co-founder of “Post Peak Living” and is also a co-founder of “Post Carbon Morin.” It’s an initiative in Morin County, California that’s preparing the county for peak oil.
André was trained as a civil engineer at the University of Toronto and, in his prior business, he supported over 35 businesses in the state of California to obtain their Green Business Certification. André is an insightful and engaging speaker whose peak oil research and speaking and writing educated audiences on the nature of peak oil and how to rapidly transition society to a low energy reality. He is becoming known very quickly as someone with a clear vision and practical solutions for this very challenging problem.
Now, on a more personal level, he loves trips to the rainforest. He has visited them in Australia, Central America and British Columbia. He’s a Canadian and has been transplanted to California and now lives with his wife in Morin. And he’s working here on converting his car to run on electricity.
André, welcome to “Living Green.”
André Angelantoni: Thanks for having me back, Meredith.
Meredith Medland: It’s so great to have you here. So, let’s talk about that car first. You’re converting your car to run on electricity. How fun is that?
André Angelantoni: It actually is a lot of fun. I’m a little bit of a computer geek so this works really well because you have a lot of little decisions to make. I’m turning a 1994 Geo Metro, who I’ve nicknamed ‘Mikey the Metro’. And I picked him because he got 54 miles to the gallon when he had an engine. But he no longer has an engine, he’s got nothing under his hood right now. And he’s going to have an electric motor soon.
Meredith Medland: Very exciting. Well, André, you’ve been up to some very important things. You’ve created a whole website on post peak living. And, first of all, before we even get into your website and all the phenomenal resources that you’ve put together, I want to say the most important thing I heard since I’ve known you and been in this conversation is that most of what you’re up to is an insurance policy for the future.
André Angelantoni: I like to say it that way to people because, otherwise, if they get hung up on ‘well, should I put away food? I’ve never had to put away food, why should I do it now?’ But, instead, if they look at it ‘well, do you have insurance for your house just in case – in the event that you have a fire?’ This is the same thing. There are lots of things that you can do just in case, for example, our food supply becomes very unreliable. Personally, I’ve got food that I don’t actually intend on ever eating. It is really there as a complete backstop – only for insurance.
Meredith Medland: All right. Well, listeners, here’s the thing that I’m prepared to help you with today: I’d love you to be able to leave this show learning how you can prepare and what resources are available. But, before we do that, we’re going to talk specifically about what peak oil is and when it’s expected to happen. André?
André Angelantoni: A lot of people confuse peak oil with running out of oil. From one point of view, we are running out of oil. That began the moment we took the first barrel of oil out of the ground. But the problems actually show up much earlier than when we’ve taken the last barrel out of the ground. It happens when the peak of production is reached. Oil is a finite resource and, like all finite resources, it starts at zero, rises to a peak, and then it starts to decline as it gets tougher to get the remaining oil – or whatever resource you have.
And we have been living for the last few decades as though we don’t have a peak. We have been living like oil is going to be there forever. And that’s particularly a problem because we’ve built up this huge infrastructure that depends on oil. 95% of the energy that we use for transportation, for instance, comes from oil. And it makes our pharmaceuticals – I was going to say fertilizers, but that actually comes from natural gas. But we are a completely dependent society on oil. And as oil is removed from the system, simply because its production declines, but the demand doesn’t, we’re going to have some rough days ahead.
Meredith Medland: So for our listeners who have a web connection in front of them, what URLs should they bring up on their computer right now?
André Angelantoni: Well, here are a few: the first one is PostPeakLiving.com and that has a couple great resources on it. First of all, it’s got the “Guide to Post Peak Living,” which is an online book that I’m always updating and it has chapters on food, energy, transportation, lighting, and so on, even skills. And, also, people can sign up for something called “The Post Peak Living Un-Crash Email Course.” It’s a free course and by signing up they get an email in their inbox once a week and it walks them through how to get ready. It’s a wonderful six-week structure that gives people a place to go. That website will give people the practical parts of oil, or preparing for oil.
But, if you want to know a little bit more of what is actually happening with the oil scene, probably, hands down, the best websites are the following: TheOilDrum.com and EnergyBulletin.net. Either one of those, but particularly TheOilDrum, you will get great resources on what’s actually happening with oil.
Meredith Medland: So, let’s start with what we need to know as a foundation to start the process of preparing for peak oil.
André Angelantoni: The first thing that I recommend to people – and this is one of the first elements of the Un-Crash Course – is they have to be willing to let go of the future that they thought they were living into. And this is going to be tough because we have all been living in some sort of future; ‘what am I going to do in five years, in ten years? Am I going to visit Europe?’ – all that stuff. That’s all going to become, if not impossible, extremely difficult.
And, at the same time, the economy is already starting to fail, in part, because of oil. The credit crisis is happening but oil is making it even worse. So I would say step one is; before people can really take action, they have to let go. And that’s not so easy for people. The sooner people let go of the future they thought they were going to have, the sooner that they’re going to have the space to create something new.
They are going to find it’s going to be like walking through tar if they want to try to create a future, but they’re resisting the fact that the one that they’ve already got is actually not going to come true. So, if people get that their future is now wide open – it was always wide open, really – but, the one that they thought they were living into is not going to happen, then they’re going to have the space to create something new. And in that space, we can create some wonderful things as a society.
Oil has given us many gifts, but it’s also had some really big drawbacks. Like the earth, for instance, really took a pummeling but, so has our diet. We’re kind of people created by corn if you read any of Michael Pollen’s books, for example. So we’re going to see some good things come out of peak oil and some bad things. And on balance, I invite people to look at it like ‘wow, here’s a real opportunity to reconstruct my life’.
Meredith Medland: My name’s Meredith Medland, and I’m here with André Angelantoni and, again, he’s the co-founder of “Post Peak Living” and is also a co-founder of “Post Carbon Morin” and that’s an initiative in Morin County, California that’s preparing for peak oil.
Thanks for listening. For texts and transcripts of this show and other shows on the Personal Life Media Network, you can go to PersonalLifeMedia.com. If you’d like to email me or participate in our online blog, you can go to LivingGreenShow.com or email me at [email protected]
Thanks again for listening. Just keep in mind this is a weekly PodCast, you can always find it in iTunes or come back to the website and visit us again. My name’s Meredith Medland and we’ll be back next week.
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