The following assumptions are reposted from David Holmgren's FutureScenarios.org. They amount to a checklist of necessary requirements for the continuation of TWAWKI.
The Unstated Assumptions of “Business as Usual”At a more pragmatic and immediate scale, the reasons for the faith in future growth are rarely articulated but can be summarized by a few common assumptions that seem to lie behind most public documents and discussion of the future.
These do not represent specific or even recognized views of particular academics, corporate leaders or politicians but more society wide assumptions that are generally left unstated.
Global extraction rates of important non-renewable commodities will continue to rise.
There will be no peaks and declines other than through high energy
substitution such as the historical transitions from wood to coal and
from coal to oil.
Economic activity, globalization and increases in technological complexity will continue to grow.
The geopolitical order that established the USA as the dominant
superpower may evolve and change but will not be subject to any
precipitous collapse such as happened to the Soviet Union.
Climate change will be marginal or slow
in its impacts on human systems, such that adaption will not
necessitate changes in the basic organization of society.
Household and community economies and social capacity will continue to shrink in both their scope and importance to society.
All of these assumptions are based on projections of past trends extending back over a human lifetime and drawing more broadly on patterns that can be traced to the origins of industrial civilization and capitalism in Europe hundreds of years ago.
Simply exposing these assumptions makes it clear how weak the foundations are for any planned response to the issue of energy transitions.
Being more transparent about our assumptions becomes essential in times of turbulent change and historical transition if our aim is to empower personal and community action.