On the Cusp of Global Collapse?
Updated Comparison of The Limits to Growth with Historical Data
Abstract:The Limits to Growth standard run scenario produced 40 years ago continues to align well with historical data that has been updated in this paper, following a 30-year comparison by the author. The scenario results in collapse of the global economy and environment, and subsequently the population. Although the modelled fall in population occurs after about 2030 – with death rates reversing contemporary trends and rising from 2020 onward – the general onset of collapse first appears at about 2015 when per capita industrial output begins a sharp decline. Given this imminent timing, a further issue this paper raises is whether the current economic difficulties of the global finan cial crisis are potentially related to mechanisms of breakdown in the Limits to Growth standard run scenario. In particular, contemporary peak oil issues and analysis of net energy, or energy return on (energy) invested, support the Limits to Growth modelling of resource constraints underlying the collapse, despite obvious financial problems associated with debt.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: June 1, 2012
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