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Thursday, July 14, 2005

Marvelous Book - Download Free

Peak Oil and the Fate of Humanity

by Robert Beriault (May 30 2005)

Peak Oil and the Fate of Humanity is a PowerPoint book that deals with the future when oil production will no longer keep up with demand.

It is available at .

The author explains the importance of oil in our industrial society, what substitutes are possible and what difficulties they imply.

He then gives an example of a past society on Easter Island, which benefited from a temporary abundance and expanded its population beyond what the environment could sustain. He draws parallels with today's technological society.

He goes further to explain how growth feeds upon growth and he provides insights about carrying capacity and the necessity of living within natural limits imposed by Nature.

Finally, he proposes that we save our technological civilization from extinction by mobilizing Canadians to take appropriate measures at the personal level, at the neighbourhood level, at the municipal level and the national level.

You can download one chapter at a time. Allow a minimum of an hour to view the eleven chapters.

The Chapters

1. Oil: The Lifeblood of a Technological Society
2. The Important Question: When Will Oil Peak?
3. Consequences of the Oil Decline
4. A: Other Non-Renewable Sources of Energy
4. B: Renewables: Wind and Solar Energy
5. The Fate of Easter Island
6. Parallels with Today's Technological Society
7. How Growth Feeds on Growth
8. How we got ourselves into this situation
9. What You and I Can Do
10. Conclusion

The Author

Robert Beriault of Gatineau, Quebec, Canada is a member of the Ottawa-Gatineau Peak Oil Group. He can be reached at .

I am a retired biotechnology laboratory manager. Since I became involved in environmental issues forty years ago the world population has almost doubled and the economic output and energy consumption have increased fivefold. Twice as many people go to bed hungry. All major indicators of environmental degradation demonstrate that the present Canadian way of life with the number of people striving for it is not sustainable.

Since my retirement I have created a sewing and screenprinting company that specialized in reusable shopping bags, founded the Val-des-Monts Recycling Association and was instrumental in founding the Ottawa-Gatineau Peak Oil Group.

I have read extensively on environmental issues and the more I read, the more I am convinced that we have greatly surpassed the Earth's ability to support our technological civilization. Unless we take some strong measures really soon, we will run head to head with natural limits and that will mark the end of the comfortable life now enjoy.

I urge you to read this presentation carefully and to disseminate it amongst all your acquaintances. Please let me know your thoughts and ideas on how we can fix a very broken life support system.

Editorial Notes

A nice presentation with lots of photos - useful for conveying the concepts and implications of Peak Oil to others.

We learned about this self-published Powerpoint book from a laudatory post by "Tapas" in a forum on

The final chapters seem to reflect the influence of the Die-Off school of thought, anticipating a severe drop in population and advocating immigration controls.

Even if one disagree with some of Beriault's points, the book is an excellent start to a discussion.

I had problems with the downloads for 56K modems; the downloads for high-speed connections worked fine.

Article found at

Original article at

Powerpoint book is at

Bill Totten


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