It takes energy to accomplish any of the activities that we associate with GDP. It takes energy to grow food: human energy, solar energy, and–in today’s world–the many types of energy used to build and power tractors, transport food to markets, and provide cooling for food that needs to be refrigerated. It takes energy to cook food and to smelt metals. It takes energy to heat and air condition offices and to power the internet. Without adequate energy, the world economy would come to a halt. We are hitting energy limits right now. Energy per capita is already shrinking, and it seems likely to shrink further in the future. Reaching a limit produces a conflict problem similar to the one in the game musical chairs . This game begins with an equal number of players and chairs. At the start of each round, a chair is removed. The players […]