National Key English Brownlee Heatley and energy, aquaculture, mining timing

Anyone notice the timing?  The mining on Schedule 4 decision, conveniently the next working day after the National Party conference. The aquaculture decision soon after, and the amazing delusion that the public outcry over Sched 4 was somehow an approval for ripping into anywhere else.

This is more than a failed idiot-friendly ideology. This is going close to socially criminal.

I can explain, clearly, to kids of 11 and 12, that growth is physically impossible ad infinitum. I can then get them to think their way through doubling-times, and work out that the last half is the last move. It’s not rocket science.

To be dumb enough to bleat the mantra that ‘the market’ just has to be left to itself and all will be well, is a thing I’m glad I’m not. It’s too obvious, and it must be to those in power, that anticipatory decisions well beyond the view of the market, have to be made. A classic is the pensions thing. It won’t hit until beyond the statute of limitations turned to face ahead. Well beyong the time a shareholder thinks, well beyong the time the IRD can’t look.

The question, then, is whether they are doing what they say they are. Are they really dumb enough to see aquaculture as a free bonanza – a green-fields area to mine? Anyone with half a clue about farming knows that to save your farm becoming a dust-bowl, you need to apply fertiliser, compost, and keep it in balance. Sure, you can rape the stored nutrients in any patch for a while, but that ends in misery.

In the case of aquaculture, the knock-on effect on other fisheries probably hasn’t even been addressed. All food-chains are about energy. The hunted prey has to deliver more energy than chasing it used up, or you are dead. The inevitable result of aquaculture will be less nutrient for the next in the food-chain – blue cod? Dolphins?  There’s no such thing as a free lunch – they should know this full well – the taxpayer underwrites theirs….

We have introduced fossil fuel to our energy equation, which has released energy to digest (cooking hastens that process) and energy to grow, cull and harvest. We have to accepy that the fossil fuel content will become more in contention, less energy-profitable (EROEI not $) and thus we will spend more time/effort ourselves in the gathering process, but that will see us wanting to eat more (requiring more energy).

It’s a scary scenario.

Someone – and I keep meaning to check, but I think it was Jay Forrester – said that if we can’t put the brakes on, and learn to live within sustainable parameters, then it’s odds-on that no emerging dominant species, on any planet, will make it. They can only advance by consuming vast amounts of long-stored energy fast, and at that point will be in overshoot.

The  thing us physics types contemplate, is that there will be no eons-stored energy source, for a new wave on humans to re-start things. If we fail to morph to sustainability this time, then the remnant population will indeed live sustainably, but at subsistence level.

A sad epitaph for a so-called intelligence.

The other thing about the power-mongers /Nats, is that they know very well what is happening, and are just stringing the mass populace along, while they get set up.

I doubt it. They don’t look too smart to me. And – amassing fiat-based wealth and sporting paunches, is unlikely to be the recipe for survival.


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