One of the world's leading experts on trend forecasting says that producing our own energy for our homes and cars (called "micro generation") will become a huge trend in the next couple of decades.What's he talking about?
Well, energy and food prices will keep going up. Every dollar we don't have to pay to the energy utility or food producers is a dollar we get to keep. And the technology for producing it ourselves is getting better and better.
So increasingly over the next couple of decades, we will generate our own energy and food.
Indeed, if the economy really crashes, we may not be able to rely on centralized energy producers and utilities or large-scale agriculture and transportation. So getting a head-start in thinking about micro energy and food production will not only save us money, it will give us confidence in uncertain times.
Due to high oil prices, major breakthroughs in energy production are happening every day.
- - A new generation of highly-efficient wind turbines (and see this) is being introduced which can produce much more energy
- - And new approaches to solar energy (see this and this) are making residential solar very cost-competitive
Moreover, if we get together with some of our neighbors and pool our energy, so we can distribute it where and when it is needed, we will save even more money. I'm not talking about hugging trees, holding hands and singing Kumbaya (although if you want to do that, that's okay). I'm talking solely about economics. If you start talking to your neighbors about this now, you'll be ready when the energy storage technology becomes cheap.
If you have any spare cash lying around and don't know where to invest it, look into micro generation. See this , this and this.
You don't need a huge backyard to grow a sizable portion of your own food. There are ways to grow food even in small spaces.
- - You can grow vegetable gardens vertically (it doesn't look that great, but it works)
- - You can get chickens and buy or build a chicken coop for eggs and chicken meat (my wife got 4 chicks a couple of weeks ago; I thought at first she was nuts, but they are actually easy to keep)
You can also join or start a farming cooperative in your area, so that you have access to food in return for a contribution of money or labor (see this, although the farms mentioned don't seem very economical). Community gardens are an option (see this and this).
Ranching cooperatives are also popping up. I predict there will be more and more of them.
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