Energy Accounting for beginners
The goal of the Earth Organisation for Sustainability follows from our understanding of the world’s problems today at the start of the third millennium. We argue that the human civilization currently is 1) utilizing resources and surface in a manner which disturbs climate, soils, freshwater reservoirs and ecosystems, 2) that this disturbance will cause a “loss of social complexity” and threaten the welfare of billions of human beings and 3) that the process which is causing these life-threatening environmental problems are caused by the current socio-economic system.
From this follows that any type of long-term solution to the current conundrum would have to entail the phasing out of our current global socio-economic system and its replacement with a new global socio-economic system.
The E.O.S has developed a blue-print for this new sustainable socio-economic system, and our goal remains to test it.
The purpose of this introductory article is to outline the broad characteristics of our socio-economic model, Energy Accounting, and why we primarily want to run field tests.
The E.O.S has defined three criteria for sustainability which a new socio-economic system must conform to.
- The system must utilize equal or less resources than the Earth can renew.
- The system must utilize as much of the available energy and utility of the resources used as sustainably possible.
- The system must ensure a dignified level of life where access to food, housing, heating/cooling, clothes, education and healthcare is ensured for every human being on Earth.
These are the three poles within which a socio-economic system must find itself for it to be deemed sufficiently sustainable, according to us.
Main article on the Three Criteria.
Energy Accounting – a brief description
Energy Accounting as envisioned by the thinkers and engineers associated with the E.O.S is built on the idea that money as a means of exchange should be replaced by Energy Credits, which would represent units of production capacity. The system is resting on three pillars, the Energy Survey, the Technate and the aforementioned Energy Credits.
The Energy Survey
The first step of the economic calculation process under Energy Accounting would be the initiation of a global Energy Survey, where resources and ecosystems are continuously monitored by several thousands of institutions, communities and millions of individuals, and the data input would determine the global ecological budget of the planetary civilization.
The Technate is envisioned as a supranational institution responsible for validating the Energy Survey and the creation and distribution of the Energy Credits. It would play a role reminiscent of a central bank under a monetary market economy.
The Energy Credits
The global ecological budget is divided into a specific number of Energy Credits, which are issued by the technate and distributed out to the users, which will be both holons (institutions/organisations/networks) and citizens, with which we mean individual human beings.
When used, the Energy Credits cease to exist, and are transformed into information that the user has allocated a share of their Energy Credits to a process of labour with the purpose of realising an item, a service or a process. In short, the Energy Credits represents how much physical energy is utilized in a production process, from the extraction of raw materials through the assembly towards the users and finishing with the energy cost for environmental compensation. This in order to ensure that the economy does not use more energy and resources than the global ecological budget ceiling allows.
New Energy Credits are created and distributed at regular intervals. When that is happening, all existent Energy Credits from the prior period are deleted.
The Holonic Social Model
Due to the development of information technologies such as the Cloud, hierarchical and rigid institutional systems will gradually be phased out and replaced with horizontal and fluid holons. A holon (meaning part-whole, a part which can be considered a whole in its own right) will be an autonomous, horizontal project group centred on fulfilling a function – often defined by its members. Given that capital as we know it has been abolished, factories, production centres and idle machinery may be utilized by numerous holons on a running schedule locally determined. The holons form their own networks to fulfil specific social, environmental and individual needs, and are empowered to conduct production from the allocations determined by the users.
Thus, we are talking about a radically de-centralized future, directed towards resilience and autonomy. People would in general experience a higher degree of freedom in terms of how they want to utilize their time, but also in terms of democratic participation.
Benefits – for the environment
- It will not be possible to utilize more resources than the planet can renew.
- Production processes which demand more efficient use of energy will become more affordable than processes with a high environmental footprint, incentivizing green technologies.
- Things will only be produced when the users are actively asking for them, reducing overall production.
- Users will know the environmental footprint in the prices of goods and services and will consciously strive to reduce their footprint.
Benefits – for society
- Abolition of debt.
- Abolition of the boom-bust cycle.
- Abolition of life-threatening poverty.
- Abolition of inflation and deflation.
- Reduction of artificial scarcity-based bottlenecks.
- We will no longer be forced to destroy the environment by the need for exponential growth.
- Reduced inequality between the Global North and Global South.
- Increased transparency.
Benefits – for the individual
- A guaranteed minimum income.
- Guaranteed housing.
- Guaranteed education.
- Guaranteed healthcare.
- Shorter work hours due to reduced need for production.
- More time to develop family life and personal interests.
- Higher resiliency and personal/communal autonomy.
- A higher degree of personal freedom.
Our goal: To test (aspects of) Energy Accounting
Here comes the aspect of the E.O.S which people often find the hardest to wrap their minds around. Our goal is not to – in a political or revolutionary manner – replace Capitalism with Energy Accounting. Our goal is to test aspects of Energy Accounting to learn how it would operate in the real world.
Specifically, we want to learn the following things:
- Are there any aspects of Energy Accounting which do not work?
- Are there any aspects of Energy Accounting which can be improved?
- How will the introduction of Energy Accounting alter human behaviour?
And, most important of all:
- Is Energy Accounting capable of fulfilling the Three Criteria.
That is the only thing we are asking for – the opportunity to run field tests on an alternative system. If the current socio-economic system employed by a majority of the regions on Earth may be unsustainable, then it would be a positive to have alternatives available. There is a possibility that we are wrong, and that the current system actually is possible to combine with sustainability (which we believe it isn’t). But there also is a possibility that we are right.
Even if you disagree with our hypothesis, it is wise and prudent to keep the door open for alternatives.
Why the EOS and not any larger green pro-sustainability organisation?
Most green organisations are operating under the assumption that the main problem is the symptoms. They are doing a laudable work and if you feel they better correspond to your interpretation of the current situation, then they are better served by your help.
The E.O.S wants to find a realistic and achievable model which can replace the current socio-economic system and fulfil the Three Criteria. This is our primary focus. We are not primarily an activist group or a political party.
How you can help
The E.O.S is a small organization and in need of manpower and resources to fulfil its operational goals. In short, we are in need of financial support to conduct our projects, like the ERCS developed by E.O.S Cascadia.
- We are gratefully and duly accepting grants and donations from institutions and members of the public, and it is our responsibility to ensure that the budget is utilized in a transparent manner and in accordance with the designated projects it’s earmarked for.
We love to have new members and volunteers. From September 2020, membership fees will go to the local E.O.S associations.
- As an E.O.S member, you have the power to propose projects and amendments to our internal decrees, as well as to petition to form holons.
Do you have a project you care about and which you believe can be of aid in assisting us towards achieving the Three Criteria? Please talk with us, and we will see if we can find ways to assist you.
- We are interested in learning of and connecting with projects aiming to fulfil the Three Criteria, and which operate on local, regional or global levels.
This planet is your planet, and right now our current socio-economic system has caused a series of unintended, emergent phenomena which may cause a new dark age for humanity. We have never before as a species faced a situation like this, and we urgently need to develop alternative ways of resource management if we are going to achieve a sustainable transition.
If you want to join us, please go here: https://eosprojects.com/join-us