One of the advantages of being obsessed with the Cold War is finding little gems like this: Britain planned chicken-powered nuclear land mines called Blue Peacock. You couldn’t make it up.
Anyway, for the Peak Oil people predicting the imminent end of civilisation, here’s a little something from the 1860s. Yes folks, its Peak Coal!
“we cannot long continue our present rate of progress“, said the respected economist, William Stanley Jevons.
On coal’s use:
“the rate of multiplication is in recent years many times as great as during preceding centuries, and is rapidly advancing”
On the supplies of coal:
“And, of course, when Mr. Vivian asserts that South Wales can supply all England for 500 years, he means at the present rate of consumption, which is quite beside the question. The question is, how long will South Wales supply us at the present price with the present growing demand?”
On substitutes for coal:
“No possible concentration of windmills, again, would supply the force required in large factories or iron works.”
Complete text at Dieoff… oops, no sorry, here instead. But the oil crash people really need to read this stuff.