By Hermes, M. & Olivas, M.
It did not take us long to make out that if we want to survive and develop, we must harness energy. The ancient man used sun as the only source of energy and when he grew old and learnt the laws of nature and how to use them for his benefit, he started using more sources of energy. Rivers became a source of mobility and wind was used to sail huge ships. All these little achievements of the man, made him interact more with the nature. The only motive behind this interaction was to learn how to benefit even more. Over the next thousand years, man learnt a lot. He broke down the nature into the tiniest thing possible and grabbed everything he could from the nature.
The ages of revolutions and advancements followed and he made more progress. Defeating other species, eliminating the dangerous ones, killing his own kind, expanding his colonies and laying his hands on everything he could, he finally reached the stage he is in TODAY! Although he saw many changes and went through many changes, there was one thing that stayed constant – his need of energy and his hunger for it. In fact, his hunger and need multiplied several times but the supply of energy could not keep up with this growing demand. Now, when this imbalance occurred, the man got desperate and started looking for more ways to harness energy and that is how hydro, solar, tidal, wind and nuclear projects were born.
Irrespective of the kind of energy that man made use of, the supply did not ever run past the demand and therefore the exploitation of the nature never stopped. This led to an imbalance in the nature and disturbed overall economics of the energy. The disturbed nature of the economics of energy can be broken down into 5 levels of dimensional economics or DEcon. These 5 levels or dimensional figures explain how the energy economics was being maintained in the nature and how man’s selfish motive has consumed the dimensions and deteriorated energy supply-demand situation. Here are the 5 levels of DEcon which will help you understand all the economics that run behind the energy and how it evolves.
4 Dimensional (4-D) Energy Economics
A 4 Dimensional Energy Economics or the Evolutionary economics talks about a globally neutral kind of a system. The consumer has an energy source and several other natural resources at his disposal. He uses them and at the same time enhances them by giving back to the nature which results in a harmonious closed system. The perfect example could be that of theoretical Gaia. Another good example could be that of the primitive man who consumes what he finds, nurtures as he grows, uses what he can and leaves what he can’t and occasionally improving what he finds.
3 Dimensional (3-D) Energy Economics
The 3 Dimensional Economics which is also referred to as the Tribal Economics has a feedback mechanism built right into it which produces multi-level recycling of the resources. Although this recycling is a means of giving back to the nature but due to the fact that the overall quality finally deteriorates, this system is of a little lesser quality in terms of dimensional economics. For example, cutting down the trees to make furniture is equivalent to taking from the nature and planting new trees is a means of giving back or a feedback in this case but the number of trees cut and number of trees given back are never equal and hence the overall quality of the system deteriorates.
2 Dimensional (2-D) Energy Economics
As the civilizations establish and spread the interaction and care for the Mother Nature decreases. Here begins the exploitation of the natural resources the consumer haves with minimum required recycling. The major difference between a 2D and a 3D decon is the level of recycling or feedback. While ‘will’ derives the recycling efforts in a Tribal Economy, ‘need’ is the derivative force behind all the recycling efforts in a 2 Dimensional or a Recycle Economy. Example of recycling can be that of Agriculture. The need of a constant food supply is what forces the consumers in the economy to recycle rather than a will to do so.
1 Dimensional (1-D) Energy Economics
Aptly named as Construction/Destruction economy, it involves activities like extraction which are totally irreplaceable or recyclable. The extraction is not only limited to the natural resources, it extends to other species and land as well. The need of an unlimited supply of energy to run industrial revolutions is the reason behind the birth of such an economy. Activities like fossil fuels mining, metal mining, colonization and hunting down animals are perfect examples of a 1 Dimensional Energy Economics.
0 Dimensional (0-D) Energy Economics
Further development in the civilizations and industries lead to a society which has to protect itself from the external threats and thus the need of arms and ammunitions arise. This highly developed civilization has a zero downtime and requires high amount of resources to function efficiently. With these kinds of requirements, the exploitation of resources maximizes without any room for recycling. Such an economic condition is called the Black Hole Dimensional Economics or the 0-D Energy Economics.
These dimensions are an excellent way to demonstrate how the need of energy forces a civilization from a complete system in itself to transform into a maximized exploiting black hole. Understanding the environmental economics behind these dimensions can help us plot graphs and figures, understand the mistakes we made and probably help us find a solution to the growing energy needs.