STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
Is It Peak Water Yet? Another Phony Meme
By Staff News & Analysis - December 10, 2012

Peak Water Debate Focuses on Asia's Water Shortage … The concept of peak water as an overarching term for increased shortage of water supply in Asia remains contentious but it has focused attention on the growing water crisis facing many countries due, in part, to over-extraction of the precious resource. Climate change, burgeoning population growth, pollution and increased industrial and agricultural capacity put more pressure on already stretched water resources. There is a lively academic discussion on whether or not we have indeed passed a tipping point in water consumption – peak water – in the same way many experts believe we have for oil – peak oil. – WaterPolitics.com

Dominant Social Theme: The sky is falling and the Earth is drying up …

Free-Market Analysis: As we can see from the above excerpt, another elite dominant social theme is making the rounds: Peak Water. We try to keep up with memes but we must confess we missed this one even though there are already 250,000 "Peak Water" cites on Google.

We want to take the time to document Peak Water only because it is another phony meme, no more legitimate than Peak Oil has proven to be. As we have suggested many times for over a decade, Peak Oil was an illegitimate analysis promoting one more elite scarcity theme.

There is another reason to track these memes carefully. They tell us what the power elite has in mind. In giving up, apparently, on the Peak Oil meme, the elites are signaling to us that they are moving on to a new phase of command and control propaganda.

We have an idea of what that might be. Peak Water plays into it.

But Peak Oil appears to be on the wane. The big guns are taking aim … Here's an excerpt from a recent editorial on Peak Oil by Nigel Lawson that appeared in the UK Daily Mail.

Thought we were running out of fossil fuels? New technology means Britain and the U.S. could tap undreamed reserves of gas and oil

Thirty years ago, I was Secretary of State for Energy in Margaret Thatcher's government, and one way and another I have been a close observer of the energy scene ever since.

In all that time, I have never known a technological revolution as momentous as the breakthrough that has now made it economic to extract gas from shale.

Geologists have long known that shale — a finely grained rock created from compressed mud, which sits in layers — contains, trapped in it, massive amounts of gas, and in some cases, oil.

Dense rock: Energy companies must drill a well hundreds or thousands of feet deep to reach the layer of shale, which can be just 50ft thick.

But getting it out of the ground is a tricky business. Below the North Sea, natural gas forms in sandstone and when a drill reaches the gas, it flows out.

But shale gas is locked in dense rock. Energy companies must drill a well hundreds or thousands of feet deep to reach the layer of shale — which can be just 50ft thick — and then turn the drill sideways to bore horizontally.

Water, chemicals and sand are pumped into the hole under enormous pressure until the rock cracks, allowing gas locked up in the shale to escape and flow upwards into the well.

This process is called hydraulic fracturing — or 'fracking' for short.

Until recently, the cost of extracting the gas has been prohibitive. But the combination of two innovative technologies — horizontal drilling and fracking to release the natural resources — has changed all that …

The dramatic news emerged a few weeks ago that the U.S. will overtake Saudi Arabia as the world's largest oil producer in 2017.

America is already the world's largest natural gas producer, and it is estimated that, by 2035, almost 90 per cent of Middle East oil and gas exports will go to Asia, with the U.S. importing virtually none.

So what's changed? From what we can tell, two things: First, as we and others – who follow free-market economics and believe in their evident and obvious reality – have predicted, technology has caught up with oil extraction. It is hard to deny, these days, the ubiquity of energy and the ability to remove it.

Second, and perhaps even more important, what we call the Internet Reformation is making it difficult for the power elite to insist on scarcity memes or even to ban or hide new technologies that promise more generous energy availability.

As we've amply documented, oil supplies have been manipulated ever since John D. Rockefeller deliberately named oil a "fossil fuel" to illustrate its putative scarcity. But based on discovery of certain building blocks for oil off Earth, it would seem that oil has little or nothing to do directly with dying dinosaurs and a lot to do with what has been called "abiotic" production.

No, it is a natural process of geology, perhaps, and is certainly all around us. That it resides in prodigious quantities in shale is not surprising to us. Nor should it be to you.

As for Peak Water, this, too, is a nonsensical concept. Water is even more ubiquitous than oil.

This does not stop a sociopathic power elite that is determined to ram its scarcity memes down our collective throat. Desalinization plants and other technologies to convert water into a drinkable state are to be ignored. The ability of humans to generate increasing resources as necessary is to remain unmentioned. Instead, we read analyses such as the one from the beginning of this article. Here's more:

According to data from the World Resources Institute, EarthTrends and the Asian Development Bank, renewable water resources in Asia (excluding the Middle East) average slightly more than 4,000 cubic meters per year, while the global average is 8,500 cubic meters per year.

The extremely water poor Middle East has only 1,500 cubic meters per year and sub-Saharan Africa with about 6,300 cubic meters per year. South America gets almost 50,000 cubic meters per year.

While a rise in global temperatures threatens further water stress in the coming years, the A.D.B. believes there are other factors aggravating water scarcity.

"Likewise, over the next few decades, changes in the drivers of demand for water, including population growth, changes in dietary patterns and patterns of urbanization and economic development are likely to have greater impacts on relative regional water scarcity than increasing temperatures," Arjun Thapan, A.D.B. special senior advisor for infrastructure and water, told Ecoseed.

Population pressures, agricultural irrigation and increased industrial use of water supply push up water use in many areas of Asia and over-extraction of groundwater in relation to recharge rates has already passed recognized tipping points.

"One way in which many regions in Asia have encountered or exceeded peak water (as defined) is in groundwater use. Many heavily populated regions, including the Gangetic Plain in India and the North China Plain, currently utilize groundwater at rates greatly exceeding long-term recharge, and in this sense have already passed peak water," Mr. Thapan said.

You see? The recipe is clear. Use apocalyptic language and don't define your terms. And then, toward the end of whatever it is you're writing, admit that it's probably all gobbledygook anyway …

However, Mr. Thapan said there is yet to be a broadly agreed upon definition for peak water, adding that certain assumptions about the global supply of a finite resource, such as oil, cannot be made about water resource … "Water, unlike oil, is not a finite resource, at least when viewed from the perspective of a given location such as a river basin.

The article continues beyond this startling admission but do we need to? There is, in our view, a power elite devoting an inordinate amount of time to trying to install world government. Reeling from the impact of the Internet, those that constitute it are using war, economic depression and an increasingly autocratic demos to try to sustain momentum.

Additionally, they continue to propose and propagate the idea of fear-based promotions that are intended to frighten middle classes into giving up power and wealth to specially constructed globalist institutions. But they are having more and more difficulty sustaining these scarcity memes.

As we point out regularly, this doesn't stop their continuance. One of the hallmarks of a promotion is its ubiquitousness. Like a rubber ball, elite promotions spring back even when squeezed by reality.

The top elites of necessity only use the building blocks of life to frighten people. These are the most powerful tools because the absence of water, food, energy and (even) air threatens existence itself.

Thus, the elites must come up with ways to illustrate that we are running out of all these things. Lacking Peak Oil, those generating these themes are expanding the general chaos in the Middle East, pushing harder to implement "solutions" to global warming and planning, apparently, to initiate scarcities of food and water to distract people.

There is investment opportunity here for cynics and others who follow these sorts of machinations. But what was a "sure thing" in the 20th century is not such in the 21st …

In the Internet era it is getting harder and harder for elites to control the conversation. Over time, this will have enormous consequences, ushering in both an era of hope and an authoritarian counterattack that is already underway. (When in doubt, brute force is the preferred course.) We've predicted the former and, in retrospect, are not surprised by the latter.

After Thoughts

But please remember, authoritarianism is often the last gasp of a dying regime.

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