We know that oil is running out. The higher price confirms it. As oil gets scarcer then the price has to increase to pay for the higher extraction costs. After the oil has gone, what comes after? Will there be a new "wonder energy"? I don't see it. Will renewable energy make up for the shortfall? I don't see that either.
I believe we will have to get used to using less energy than we do now. That is going to be rather a shock to people living in the cities. Maybe energy theft will be the new crime of the future. Stealing another person's quota. The haves and have-nots of the energy world.
Of course, those of us who went off-grid will be okay. Or will we? We might becomes the targets of energy thieves or of jealous energy have-nots. Maybe the lack of energy will affect the supply of raw materials for off-griders to make their equipment. Without today's industries, electronics, wire, magnets and bearings would be very scarce. The military would probably get first refusal on almost everything.
There are quite a few people round here that don't have electricity at all and are quite happy without it. I don't watch much television these days. With just RTÉ and a poorly funded Teilifíis na Gaeilige the number of programmes I would want to watch per day can be counted on one... finger. That leaves the fridge, the washing machine and the computer I write this blog upon. Well, a cold store might handle most of the fridge's duties. It wouldn't handle milk so either I or a neighbour would have to become the community's milk provider. And that points to the future.
Decentralisation will become the model for the future. Oil allows us to concentrate populations because we can have more people living in an area than the land itself could sustain naturally. People will have no choice but to leave the cities. Without oil to transport food to the supermarkets we will have to get used to not travelling to the local town to pick up provisions but make do ourselves. I think a lot of my neighbours will be outside my door with their begging bowls, so keen they are to forget their recent past and adopt all the trappings that this materialist bubble has to offer.