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Mayo Energy Audit 2009-2020
A Preliminary Assessment of a Rural County’s Chances of Surviving Peak Oil
Perhaps not too surprisingly, the outlook is not good. Although the area studied has a wealth of untapped and undeveloped renewable energy resources, and a relatively low population to support, the audit clearly demonstrates that not more than a small fraction of current energy demand can be met by renewable sources of energy.
The authors of the study evaluate each individual resource on a case by case basis and make an assessment of what might be achievable by 2020 and beyond. Very little is taken for granted with regard to emerging but unproven technologies. Instead, the authors focus primarily on the technologies already available,
The links between economic growth, resource depletion and energy use are established early in the report. It is acknowledged that economic growth will not occur in a world of declining energy resources. Furthermore, not only is the free market economic model - which prioritises shareholder’s dividends over social and civic responsibility - incapable of delivering a sustainable society, it also bears much
The inescapable conclusion is that the structure of society will have to be transformed in order to adapt to a much lower supply of energy. In the future, much will have to be done differently. While the problem is global, the solutions will be largely be local, community based ones in which cooperation takes precedence over competition.
The Mayo Energy Audit asks crucial questions about the way in which society both defines and organises itself. While not attempting to provide a definitive list of answers, it offers guidance as to the direction societies might take in order to survive peak oil.
More on the Mayo Audit
"The Mayo Energy Audit is a ground-breaking study which investigates how the county of Mayo might adapt to the challenges posed by fossil fuel depletion and global warming. It is intended to form the basis for a comprehensive strategic energy action plan for Mayo. The audit has examined all of Mayo’s renewable energy resources as well as considering the future role of fossil fuels. It represents the first regional study of its type to be carried out in Ireland."
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