This era in history may be remembered as the "Peak Age", a brief time when nearly all materials used to power and create our society reach the maximum extraction and production potential. Past this point, all of these resources become increasingly difficult to extract until they are no longer economically viable resources to be using. There are hundreds of examples of resources, currently embedded in our industrial society, which have reached their peak in the 50 years surrounding 2010, but the one which will most impact our society is petroleum.

The goal of living for 100 days without oil is to understand the extent of our dependance on oil in American society today. Specifically, how it will affect my life, as a 25 year-oil living in Minneapolis, MN. By using myself as a metric I can take a close and conscious look at where oil dependance occurs in all aspects of our daily lives : How we transport ourselves from one place to another, what we eat, how much waste we create, how water is cleaned and transported, where oil is used as; an energy resource, in conventional medicine and for hygiene and how oil affects how we entertain ourselves and communicate with others. By demonstrating how someone would be forced to live without using any oil resources, outlining both what the sacrifices will be as well as the benefits, we can can identify the many systems which will have to be re-designed in a world without cheap oil, and explore a new way of living in which we live in an energy balance.

(At the bottom of this page is a link to my version of a flow diagram of 'Where Petroleum Exists in Our Daily Lives' (using information from the Energy Information Administration-Annual Energy Review 2008 fig 5.0 Petroleum flow) click and zoom to enlarge)

Monday, October 25, 2010


20 October 2010

How to eat locally all year long (storing enough food and growing enough food to last through the winter) is an form of great art.  I have a few friends who have successfully done this but it takes a TON of planning and a good sense of how long it takes to grow everything (planting timing) and what time of year everything is available.  The following graphic is a combination of one I found on the Minnesota Farmer's Market's website as well as my own experience looking for produce at the markets and coops. 

The solid black line represents when foods are available in season.  Gray line shows foods that can be stored for a significant amount of time.  Hollow line shows what foods I am currently storing (canned, frozen or dried).  Dashed line shows the plan I have for growing food on my grow table.  While, the grow table seems to work best for greens and herbs, and I am still testing out what vegetables have enough light to produce fruit. 

(click to enlarge)

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