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Remember, using resistance heaters with clean power is better than having a gas furnace, despite being an insanely wasteful use of electricity, and not everyone can use heat pumps.
In a (part-)nuclear grid, central heating can obviate this requirement.
For that matter, there is no good reason why we have to replace all current uses of fossil fuels with electricity: Heating requirements can be wholly obviated via appropriate architecture, even in Northern Finland in the winter; the need for transportation can be greatly abridged with improved city planning and settlement patterns; shipping can, for all non-perishable commodities, be powered by sail. The only major uses of fossil fuels I can think of off-hand are air travel (which will need to be replaced by trains and ships), industrial heat sources like furnaces and electricity generation for existing electricity demand.
This will kill the suburbs and radically alter the rural areas, of course. But our way of life is negotiable - the laws of physics are not.
Austerity can only be implemented in the shadow of a concentration camp.
What's really interesting is that Swedish power consumption has been pretty flat since 1985 (when the latest nukes came online), but the amount of electrical heating has steadily fallen, after the initial surge in use.
Essentially, the growth in power demand due to economic growth has been hidden by the constant draw-down of electric heaters. Now that that low value-added use of power has more or less been phased out, new generating capacity will be needed to fuel future economic growth.
The idea that the linkage in growth in GDP and power consumption in Sweden has been fundamentally broken, is going to be shown to be an empty shell. This means the projected power surplus of the future will fail to materialise.
Did I mention it would be totally cool to make a study where one can try to falsify this hypothesis? ;)
Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
If you are interested in trying to make such a study, I would guess this institution might be interested:
Chalmers: Energi och miljö: Fysisk resursteori
På avdelningen för fysisk resursteori bedriver vi tvärvetenskaplig forskning och utbildning inom områden som hållbar utveckling, energisystem i ett klimatperspektiv, industriell ekologi samt komplexa system.
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