MuseLetter

Museletter #357: Can Civilization Survive? These Studies Might Tell Us

MuseLetter #357 / December 2022 by Richard Heinberg Download printable PDF version Dear MuseLetter reader, 2022 was the 30th year for this publication, and it's been heartening to see these essays being distributed through an increasing number of online and print publishing outlets. There's more to come! May your solstice be a time for reflection, […]

Museletter #355: Oil, war and the fate of industrial societies

MuseLetter #355 / October 2022 by Richard Heinberg Download printable PDF version This month’s Museletter consists of two essays. The first, “Oil, War and the Fate of Industrial Societies,” looks at parallels between today’s energy/economy crisis and my 2003 book The Party’s Over. The second, “Blues for America,” was inspired by a concert I attended […]

Museletter #354: What you need to know about the energy crisis

MuseLetter #354 / September 2022 by Richard Heinberg Download printable PDF version In May I wrote about the emerging energy and food crisis gripping the world due largely to the Russia-Ukraine conflict. The crisis continues to unfold. However, most people are aware of it only via high prices—for gasoline, electricity, natural gas, and food—and through […]

Museletter #353: Deadly Optimism, Useful Pessimism

MuseLetter #353 / July 2022 by Richard Heinberg Download printable PDF version This month's Museletter begins with "Deadly Optimism, Useful Pessimism," which warns against the former and shows how the latter could help us find a path towards realistic alternatives. The second article, "Will civilization collapse because it’s running out of oil?," summarizes an important […]

Museletter #352: The 1970s Again?

MuseLetter #352 / June 2022 by Richard Heinberg Download printable PDF version The 1970s Again? For the United States and much of the rest of the world, the 1970s were a time of high oil prices, surging inflation, stock market swoons, political upheaval, and geopolitical tension. Add pandemic and climate change to the list, and […]

Museletter #351: The Energy/Food Crisis

MuseLetter #351 / May 2022 by Richard Heinberg Download printable PDF version Dear reader, This month’s MuseLetter consists of two essays. The first, “Can We Abandon Pollutive Fossil Fuels and Avoid an Energy Crisis,” maps the constraints of climate/energy policy that will shape the remainder of our lives. The second, “The Energy and Food Crisis […]

Museletter #350: The Failure of Global Elites

In the 1970s, global political and corporate elites had all the information they needed to put the world on a path toward long-term stability. Systems science was sufficiently advanced that a team of its practitioners organized a scenario study to see how trends in industrial production, population, food, pollution, and resource usage might interact over the next few decades; the study showed that continued growth in population and industrial production would prove unsustainable.

Museletter #349: After the Ukraine Invasion

MuseLetter #349 / March 2022 by Richard Heinberg Download printable PDF version Dear subscriber, This month has seen the start of a historic and tragic invasion. In this month’s Museletter I’ve examined some of the Ukraine war’s likely implications for energy, economy, and geopolitics. Meanwhile, in a second piece Museletter maintains its gaze on an […]

Museletter #347: Social Cohesion Is Vital, and We’re Losing It

MuseLetter #347 / January 2022 by Richard Heinberg Download printable PDF version This month’s Museletter kicks off with an essay on the important role of social cohesion in holding societies together and addressing crises. That is followed by one summarising the current status of global action to combat climate change. Social Cohesion Is Vital, and […]

Museletter #345: How Much of the Worsening Energy Crisis is Due to Depletion?

MuseLetter #345 / November 2021 by Richard Heinberg Download printable PDF version How Much of the Worsening Energy Crisis is Due to Depletion? Coal and natural gas spot prices have recently soared to record levels internationally, while oil is trading at over $80 a barrel—the highest price in seven years. Newspaper columnists are asking whether […]

Museletter #344: Evolution and Climate Change Through the Lens of Power

MuseLetter #344 / October 2021 by Richard Heinberg Download printable PDF version Evolution and Climate Change Through the Lens of Power This essay is based on, and partly extracted from, the book POWER: LIMITS AND PROSPECTS FOR HUMAN SURVIVAL. During the last century, evolutionary biologists developed the idea that power (defined as the rate of […]

Museletter #343: The Only Long-Range Solution to Climate Change

MuseLetter #343 / September 2021 by Richard Heinberg Download printable PDF version This essay is adapted from my new book POWER: Limits and Prospects for Human Survival (New Society Publishers, September 2021). The Only Long-Range Solution to Climate Change Climate change is often incorrectly described as an isolated pollution issue. In this flawed framing, humanity […]

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