The New Energy System
«The universal history can be subdivided into three parts, all characterized by a certain energy system. The energy system establishes the general framework, within which the structures of society, economy, and culture form.
Humans lived as hunters and gatherers on the solar energy stored in naturally growing biomass for 90% of the time of their existence, that is until the Neolithic revolution. The social structure is that of the horde. For 98% of the time of civilized life, that is between the Neolithic revolution and the Industrial Revolution, people continued to live on the daily influx of solar energy, using naturally growing and cultivated biomass, wind power, and water power. Peasants and craftsmen were the pillars of society, whose structure changed from tribal to feudal. The last 2% of civilized life, the years since the Industrial Revolution, has been determined by the combustion of fossil fuels in heat engines.
Since then, in addition to the daily influx of solar energy, people have to their avail the giant stores of fossil fuels accumulated on Earth by the Sun over more than 200 million years.»*
Now it changes yet again.
In the 21st century, humans again turn their face to the Sun; this time acquiring much more than what cultivated biomass or fossil fuels offer. It is clean, and almost infinite, but not uninterruptable. It should become so, if it is going to serve humanity. What’s going to make the new energy system uninterruptable is:
The Future of Energy Storage
is coming soon.
*Reiner Kümmel, The Second Law of Economics, Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011