The End of Suburbia

January 21, 2008 § 2 Comments

Last night, after bilingual baby went to bed, I stayed up and watched one called The end of suburbia. I didn’t know anything about it and just sat down to see what I’d learn. If you have a way to get this, I recommend you watch it. That is, if you’re ready to have your way of life questioned. If you’d rather continue living the way you do, buying the way you do (and from the people you do), consuming the way you do, I’d still say you should watch it but I will warn you that you may be angry afterwards. Why angry? Because the documentary zeroes in on the fact that in North America we are consuming more than we can produce. In some of the interviewees minds, it all boils down to oil. They said that we are using oil as if we had an abundance of it and in fact we are at the peak oil production… but after the peak has to come the downfall and the documentary asked the question, “Are we ready to give up the way we live?”In other words, with no oil we won’t be able to hop in the car to go get cheap… anything. We’ll have to buy local and we’ll have to pay more for it. But most people aren’t used to that. In a way, I don’t blame us for looking for a bargain. Things are expensive and jobs are hard to come by. What they argued in the documentary was that, although the suburban way of life was a dream come true for many years back, it is not sustainable and will never be sustainable if there is gas for your car, nor heat for your mcmansion.

The documentary states that we’ll need to almost entirely restructure our way of living if/when oil production begins to decline. What does this mean for you or me?

You will have to buy local… for everything! China’s products won’t be able to get here without oil.

Your pleasure drive will be no more. In fact, you’ll have to get a job closer to home.

Find another way to heat and cool your home.

You won’t be able to avoid your neighbors; you’ll have to make the effort. (Just so you know, once you start making an effort, it becomes effortless)

Here are some of the things that, at the end, the documentary recommends you can do to start preparing for the oil shortage:

Live more locally

Consider what kind of job you’ll have in 10 years

Become less car dependent

Reconsider how you use energy

Consider that you’ll need a strong sense of local community

Downsize everything- car, home, expenses….

What could you do?

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§ 2 Responses to The End of Suburbia

  • Linda says:

    According to all the studies the most important thing anyone can do to reduce the oil shortage, and reduce consumption in general, is to avoid producing a new generation of consumers.

  • Leila says:

    Thanks for your comment Linda. I don’t know if you’re new to the blog, but welcome!

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