BOB WALDROP'S PRESENTER'S NOTES FOR THE SEPT 20
2008 WORKSHOP IN OKLAHOMA CITY
SCOPE OF THE PROBLEM
- Economic irrationality
- Peak Energy
- Climate instability
- Large weather disasters
- Economic meltdown
- Terrorist attacks
- Climate disaster (long-term changes as opposed to discrete weather disaster events like a particular hurricane or
- Resource exhaustion (peak oil, peak energy in general)
- Our purpose is to decide what it would take for an urban area like the OKC Metropolitan Statistical Area, with 1.1
million people in it, to survive a sudden collapse of our food and energy systems.
- Worst case scenario (except for nuke explosion)
- No fossil fuels or other internal combustion available,
- No electricity, not from the grid, not from small generators, not from batteries,
- total electronic telecommunication failure - no radio, no TV, no cable, no internet, no "any communications/media that
- Complete collapse of the just-in-time inventory system,
- Closure of the banking system, no credit cards, checks can't clear, funds can't be withdrawn.
- Disappearance of the internet.
- Getting there the firstest with the mostest is critical to a positive response. Government likely to be in disarray, big
danger is toxic/authoritarian/scapegoating responses will emerge..
- Some people will relocate (to family or friends in rural areas). This should be encouraged.
- Likely to be refugees also headed our way.
- In the absence of grid-distributed power, OKC Water estimates they could supply 50% of the average daily domestic
water consumption with small gasoline and diesel pumps. Unanswered question: how much fuel would be on hand for
these devices? What about water purification? Sewer system?.
- Rainwater harvesting
- Shallow wells
- Slow-sand filters
- Purification issues
- Without regular supply, the area would be out of food very quickly. (Note the experience of hurricane areas where
people run out of food apparently almost immediately.)
- Go over food scenarios.
- Basic ration of 2 lbs flour/day and 2 lbs dry soybeans per week, for 1.1 million people, must be hauled from grain
elevators within 60 mile or so radius.
- biodiesel from cotton seed for diesel fuel for hauling food? (Cotton Seed Producers Oil Mill is close to downtown
- Alcohol fuel for transportation?
- Bicycle carts capable of hauling 250 lbs each?
- Urban gardening
- Containers/gardens on pavement such as sidewalks and streets.
- Seed sources include:
- Seeds from vegetables in stores, like pumpkins, winter squash.
- Dried peas and beans.
- Potatoes, sweet potatoes
- Existing seed stocks
- Bring animals from rural areas into the city with cattle/hog drives.
- Import lots of chickens from the rural areas.
- Every yard a garden.
- Plant public spaces like parks and street medians.
- Container growing on sidewalks and streets
- Community kitchens and baking ovens
- Raising fish in barrels
- Compost humanure
- Collect urine for fertilizer.
- Aquaponics in solar sun porches
- Cold frames and other season extending devices.
- Other meat animals
- Fish culture
- Guinea pigs
- Why would farmers want to supply grain and beans to city populations?
- Avoid wholesale evacuation of cities into the countryside.
- Help in time of need
- Combine households? The extended family, by birth or adoption or convenience or necessity, will make a big come-back.
- More hands will be needed for everything, plus building materials.
- On average, maybe 3 households link together as one.
- Each house needs:
- Water harvesting structures.
- Passive solar.
- Solar hot water.
- Greenhouse/season extending devices.
- Big risk of deforestation, because wood is the easiest non-fossil-fuel fuel..
- Home methane generation from human waste for cooking gas.
- Alcohol fuel for transportation, maybe some biodiesel.
- Biodiesel is iffy because oils will be in great shortage and in demand for cooking, access depends on where Cottonseed
oil coop is in its annual production cycle when the crash occurs.
- Passive solar for winter heat.
- Extra insulation.
- If three households become one, scavenge materials from two houses to retrofit one.
- Solar cooking
- Expedient but efficient wood stoves (e.g. the rocket stove)
HUMAN WASTE AND TRASH DISPOSAL
- There is none in this scenario. Everything will have a use or be re-used/recycled on site or in neighborhoods, or sold
through informal markets.
MEDICAL CARE AND PUBLIC HEALTH
- Authorities will raise a big stink about composting humanure.
- Many medically fragile people will die quickly.
- Hospitals and nursing homes would have to be evacuated if/when their generators fail.
- New medical practices located in neighborhoods, nurses/midwives empowered..
- Epidemic of post-traumatic stress disorder?
- Epidemic disease (water born diseases in particular will be a big problem).
- Addiction recovery issues?
- Neighborhood councils.
- Elected by all residents.
- Community organization
- Pre-planned strategies for collapse situations.
- Insulated window shutters
- Slow sand filters
- Food storage
- Edible landscaping
- Grain grinder
- Solar hot water
- Passive solar
- Tools for production (alcohol stills, for example)
- Info banks for research
- Pre-printed and pre-positioned literature in neighborhoods describing strategies/tactics/info/tools to meet the new
- Get there the firstest with the mostest.
- No one needs the permission of the government to acquire food or supply other necessities..