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Medium term for the reasons everyone else has listed, long term I think the US is in better shape:

higher arable land to population ratio

we have far more oil internally than Europe does (and while we use far more per capita we'll have more available to keep the minimum energy required to keep urban societies operating)

when things are getting quite bad the world over (when we're steep on the downslope of oil production) I see tribalism making a vengeful return, and for geographic reasons I think that bodes worse for Europe (it will certainly be bad for someone in north and south America, but no one can compete with American power locally, whereas Europe has a number of countries with equal weight to throw around, in my opinion meaning higher risk of social breakdowns, war, and thus damage to infrastructure that will be harder to repair post peak-oil).

Hard to know, though, as now days "little" proximate events like a nuke launch can easily wind up defining the next 10,000 years of human existence.

you are the media you consume.

by MillMan (millguy at gmail) on Tue Sep 29th, 2009 at 03:48:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
US: Footprint 2.8b ha, 9.4ha/ca, Biocapacity 1.4b ha, 5ha/ca
Germany: Footprint 0.35b ha, 4.2ha/ca; Biocapacity 0.16b ha, 1.9ha/ca
France: Footprint 0.30b ha, 4.9ha/ca; Biocapacity 184.4b ha, 3.0ha/ca
Japan: Footprint 0.62b ha, 4.9ha/ca; Biocapacity 0.08b ha, 0.6ha/ca
China: Footprint 2.8b ha, 2.1ha/ca; Biocapacity 1.1b ha, 0.9ha/ca

So sorting in terms of per capita footprint deficit:

China (-1.1)ha/ca, France: (-1.9)ha/ca, Germany (-2.3)ha/ca, Japan (-4.3)ha/ca, US: (-4.4ha/ca)

But sorting in terms of biocapacity per capita, as an index of domestically sustainable standard of living at current population levels and biocapacity:

US 5ha/ca, France 3ha/ca, Germany 1.9ha/ca, China 0.9ha/ca, Japan 0.6ha/ca


I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Tue Sep 29th, 2009 at 05:30:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Sweden 10ha/ca, Finland 12ha/ca.

Pity there is no values for the EU, looking at the future that will be more decisive then the values for the membercountries. I would guesstimate to a lower value then for the US and a higher then for Germany.

(Btw, Russia 8ha/ca)

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Wed Sep 30th, 2009 at 06:13:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
There are EU figures, they just aren't in the nation trends pages. You just have to download the spreadsheet to get them.

Footprint: 4.7ha/ca, biocapacity 2.3ha/ca, surplus (-2.4)ha/ca.

The surplus countries are Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, and Sweden, Bulgaria about balanced.

I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Wed Sep 30th, 2009 at 07:28:30 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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