Engineering as a frontline issue
If the Design is proven to be a viable alternative to the current socio-economic system, and therefore is introduced, it would mean nothing less than a complete cultural and social transformation of the human civilization, and a shift of many values once considered essential and hailing back twelve thousand years.
Examples of concepts which would be altered would be ranging from trade and accumulation to inheritance, savings and interest. And these are the three factors we intend to showcase in this article, as we previously have discussed a lot about transactions under a technate, but considerably less about accumulation.
It is composed of an on-going Energy Survey which measures the planet’s renewal capacity and thus establishes a Global Ecological Budget Ceiling, a Technate which is administering all allocation, and Energy Units, the new currency which would work as the medium of allocation.
This article will focus on the aforementioned Energy Units, and especially on different strategies on how they can be distributed to a population. The main issue is to find balance between guaranteeing a good quality of life for all human beings, and preserve incentives in relation to the changed circumstances which we would experience during the transition from the decaying Capitalism of the 21st century into a brand new, hypothetical system. While more tests, research projects and simulations are needed, we can still hypothesise about different methodologies of distributing energy units. By defining different methodologies of distributing energy units, we can outline different futures for a sustainable civilization.
The 21st century must – if the human civilization wants to endure and thrive – be characterized by the greatest conscious project our species ever has engaged in, namely the Transition. This process must engage all of humanity, on both the local, regional and global levels. It must involve a total transformation of financial systems, agriculture, industry, fuel sources, energy usage, urban design, transit systems and consumption patterns.
A critique has recently surfaced against aspects of Energy Accounting, which to some extent is a novelty. Usually, criticisms of the Design have been focused on the technical ability to manage information about the environmental capacity of the entire Earth and the production of our civilization, as well as the issue of incentives. These critiques have been levelled at us by proponents of the current or more radical forms of market capitalism. This time, however, the critique was directed from adherents of the Marxist-Leninist variety of central planning. It is certainly not every day one gets the opportunity to be criticised for unintentionally aiming to wreck the environment by people who in principle find the systems employed during the 20th century in the Soviet Union, the People’s Republic of China, the German Democratic Republic, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and Democratic Kampuchea to be steps in the right direction.
The Design is proposing the replacement of the current monetary system with one based on Energy Accounting, which derives its basis from Thermodynamics and its goals from the third criteria. Even though the overwhelming majority of people are agreeing with our three criteria, critique and skepticism is inevitably increasing when we are starting to talk about the proposed adjustments provided by the Design.
Of course, skepticism is well-motivated, especially given that our proposal is a novelty which would transform most of the manners in which we are dealing with resources, and redefine concepts such as property, wealth, profit and trade, which have been established parts of human affairs since before historical records started to emerge. Moreover, the Design has not been exposed to the realities of human society and the economy yet, which is why it needs to undergo field tests and simulations first.
To aid understanding of the concept of Sustainability, this article presents a series of diagrams, theoretical background, examples and engineering guidelines. Sustainability as the scientific approach to production, which understands the variables of it's environment rather than simply exploiting it. Offers a fresh perspective on the design of systems of production, which are better able to serve their purpose and are more economical on the long run. Sustainability is a necessity as well as a logical next step.