Peak oil & you

by Chris Harries

Few Tasmanians are aware of looming oil depletion and how profoundly it will affect their lives.

No matter who you are, your life is going to be significantly affected by the Peak Oil phenomenon.

As a Tasmanian citizen you will be subjected to surging prices for many basic commodities, especially fuel and food. This will affect things like the cost of travelling – for work, socialising and recreation.

    • If your place of living or your chosen lifestyle are heavily transport dependent then you will be more affected than most.

    • If you are already finding it hard to make ends meet, then your financial situation may become really precarious.

    • If you have friends and family in far off places you may find it no longer affordable to meet up with them, and this may become a major cause for distress.

    • If you are a business operator, many of your operating costs will increase and the profitability of your business may suffer.

The chart below shows the impact of oil prices on household and small business finances. In some cases the green wedge may disappear altogether.

There are many steps that you can take to inoculate your life against these stresses. Whoever you are, it will be prudent for every Tasmanian to take stock of their lives and take steps to build their personal and community resilience.

Ironically, the Peak Oil phenomenon will also herald many positive changes, enabling people to enjoy better health, more vibrant towns and cities, stronger local economies and a much stronger sense of community purpose.

Motto 1: Doing nothing is not an option.

Motto 2: Take sensible precautions now, whilst you can.

Motto 3: Lobby the government to take strong action in the interests of the Tasmanian population.

(Chris Harries is a long term advocate for sustainability and social justice policies. He is an active member of the Peak Oil Tasmania working group.)