# (3/8) De meest belangrijke video die je ooit zal zien (deel 3 van 8)

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Now, if we thought Detroit was a better model, we’ll have to shoot for 3.27% per year.
Remember the historic figure on the preceding slide, 6% per year?
If that could continue for one lifetime, Boulder would be larger than Los Angeles.
Now this isn't Boulder plus Roomfield, Louisville, Lafayette and other towns in the county. It's just Boulder.
Well, it's obvious you couldn't put the population of Los Angles in the Boulder valley.
Therefore it’s obvious, Boulder’s population growth is going to stop.
Now the only question is, will we be able to stop it while there is still some open space,
or will we wait until it’s wall-to-wall people and we’re all choking to death?
Now it's interesting to read what the boosters say. Some years ago we read, "the doubling in population in 10 years, Boulder... is indeed a stable a
" What in the whole world are they talking about. You're gonna 100 miles an hour, 7% growth per year, doubling in less then 10 years.
Someone makes the idiotic statement that we're stable. We're standing still, we're not moving.
They don't even understand the meaning of the words that they put down on paper.
Now, every once in a while somebody says to me, “But you know, a bigger city might be a better city,”
and I have to say, “Wait a minute, we’ve done that experiment!”
We don’t need to wonder what will be the effect of growth on Boulder because Boulder tomorrow can be seen in Los Angeles today.
And for the price of an airplane ticket, we can step 70 years into the future and see exactly what it’s like.
What is it like? There’s an interesting headline from Los Angeles. (“…carcinogens in air…”)
Maybe that has something to do with this headline from Los Angeles. (“Smog kills 1,600 annually…”)
So how are we doing in Colorado? Well, we’re the growth capital of the USA and proud of it.
The Rocky Mountain News tells us to expect another million people in the Front Range in the next 20 years,
But in The Post there was an interesting story. Someone has called it
"Colorado has a 3% growth rate. That's like a third world country with no birth control!"
We send foreign aid, family planning assitants to countries that have smaller population growth rates then Colorado has.
Well, as you can imagine, growth control is very controversial, and I treasure the letter from which these quotations are taken.
Now, this letter was written to me by a leading citizen of our community. He’s a leading proponent of “controlled growth.”
“Controlled growth” just means “growth.”
This man writes, “I take no exception to your arguments regarding exponential growth.”
“I don't believe the exponential argument is valid at the local level.”
So you see, arithmetic doesn't hold in Boulder. (audience laughs)
I have to admit, that man has a degree from the University of Colorado.
It’s not a degree in mathematics, in science, or in engineering.
Let’s look now at what happens when we have this kind of steady growth in a finite environment.
Bacteria grow by doubling. One bacterium divides to become two, the two divide to become 4, the 4 become 8, 16 and so on.
Suppose we had bacteria that doubled in number this way every minute.
Suppose we put one of these bacteria into an empty bottle at 11:00 in the morning, and then observe that the bottle is full at 12:00 noon.
There's our case of just ordinary steady growth: it has a doubling time of one minute, it’s in the finite environment of one bottle.
I want to ask you three questions. Number one: at what time was the bottle half full?
Well, would you believe 11:59, one minute before 12:00? Because they double in number every minute.
And the second question: if you were an average bacterium in that bottle, at what time would you first realise you were running of space?
Now, think about this. This kind of steady growth is the centerpiece
of the national economy and of the entire global economy. Think about it.
Well, let’s just look at the last minutes in the bottle. At 12:00 noon, it’s full;
one minute before, it’s half full; 2 minutes before, it’s a quarter full; then an 1/8th; then a 1/16th.
Let me ask you, at 5 minutes before 12:00, when the bottle is only 3% full and is 97% open space just yearning for development,
how many of you would realise there’s was problem?
Now, in the ongoing controversy over growth in Boulder, someone wrote to the newspaper some years ago and said,
“Look, there isn't any problem with population growth in Boulder, because,” the writer said, “we have fifteen times as much open space as we've already used.”
So let me ask you, what time was it in Boulder when the open space was fifteen times the amount of space we’d already used?
The answer is, it was four minutes before 12:00 in Boulder Valley.
Well, suppose that at 2 minutes before 12:00, some of the bacteria realise they’re running out of space, so they launch a great search for new bottles.
They search offshore on the outer continental shelf and in the overthrust belt and in the Arctic, and they find three new bottles.
Now that’s a colossal discovery, that’s three times the total amount of resource they ever knew about before.
They now have four bottles, before their discovery, there was only one.
Now surely this will give them a sustainable society, won’t it?
You know what the third question is: how long can the growth continue as a result of this magnificent discovery?
Well, look at the score: at 12:00 noon, one bottle is filled, there are three to go; 12:01,
two bottles are filled, there are two to go; and at 12:02, all four are filled and that’s the end of the line.
Now, you don't need any more arithmetic than this to evaluate the absolutely contradictory statements
that we’ve all heard and read from experts who tell us in one breath we can go on increasing our rates of consumption of fossil fuels,
in the next breath they say “Don't worry, we will always be able to make the discoveries of new resources that we need to meet the requirements of that growth.”
Well, a few years ago in Washington, our energy secretary observed that in the energy crisis,
“we have a classic case of exponential growth against a finite source.” So let's look now at some of these finite sources.
From the work of the late Dr. M. King Hubbert we have here a semi-logarithmic plot of world oil production.
The lines have been approximately straight for about 100 years, clear up here to 1970, average growth rate very close to 7% per year.
So it’s logical to ask, well, how much longer could that 7% growth continue?
That’s answered by the numbers in this table (shows slide). The numbers in the top line tell us that in the year 1973,
world oil production was 20 billion barrels; the total production in all of history, 300 billion; the remaining reserves, 1700 billion.
Now, those are data. The rest of this table is just calculated out assuming the historic 7% growth
continued in the years following 1973 exactly as it had been for the proceeding 100 years.
Now, in fact the growth stopped; not because of the arithmetic, it stopped because OPEC raised their oil prices.
So we’re asking here, what if? Suppose the growth had continued. Let’s go back to 1981.
By 1981 on the 7% curve, the total usage in all of history would add up to 500 billion barrels; the remaining reserves, 1500 billion.
At that point, the remaining reserves are three times the total of everything we’d used in all of history.
That’s an enormous reserve, but what time is it when the remaining reserve is three times the total of all you’ve used in all of history?
And the answer is: two minutes before 12. Well, we know that for 7% growth the doubling time is 10 years. We go from 1981 to 1991.
By 1991 on the 7% curve, the total usage in all of history would add up to 1000 billion barrels; there would be 1000 billion left.
At that point, the remaining oil would be equal in quantity to all that we have used
in the entire history of the oil industry on this earth, 130 years of oil consumption.
By most measures you'd say, “That’s an enormous remaining reserve.”
But what time is it when the remaining reserve is equal to all you’ve used in all of history?