Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think by Peter H. Diamandis and Steven Kotler, is about living in a world of scarcity and how we might move to abundance. The opening few pages include facts like:
- “Currently humanity uses 30 percent more of our planet’s natural resources than we can replace.”
- “If everyone on this planet wanted to live the lifestyle of the average European, we would need three planets’ worth of resources to pull it off.”
- “If everyone on this planet wished to live like an average North American, then we would need five planets to pull it off.”
The authors talk about aluminum which is the third most abundant element in the world. It was known in biblical times but not accessible. It’s in bauxite which must be processed which wasn’t economically available until the late 1800s.
The book discusses solar energy. Our sun emits five thousand times more energy than the world uses annually. Fifty square metres of land in six hours on a sunny day will receive 300 kilowatt hours; that’s about ten times the typical daily household usage in North America. To put 50 square metres in perspective, a Canadian football field has 59,400 square metres, not counting the end zones; enough energy for 11,880 households. The issue is not availability but accessibility.
The authors also discuss the speed of advances being made with technology. If you subscribe to the concept of doubling the advance every eighteen months at half the cost (Moore’s law), then we go from scarcity to abundance very quickly. Reflect on recent advances. We live better today than kings and queens did a hundred years ago. Many of us carry more information in our pockets than was available to world leaders just 25 years ago.
The book deals with energy, health, water and education. It’s very exciting and I look forward to sharing more in the coming months.