Wednesday, July 3, 2013

The End of the Oil Drum

Rembrandt Koppelaar has announced today that the Oil Drum will cease to be an active site with the end of July 2013. After eight years of activity, TOD is closing down.

I would like first to thank all the members of the TOD group, of which I have been a member up from 2008 up to a few months ago. It has been an unforgettable experience of learning and of personal growth. The "peak" of the group, for me at least, was the Alcatraz meeting that we had in Italy in 2009 which led me to develop the "peak empire" idea.

Alas, as Seneca had said about all human things, there always comes a moment of decline which, often, is faster than growth. This seems to have been the destiny of the TOD group, which I had already left some months ago because it seemed to me that it wasn't any more the lively discussion group that it had known at the beginning. So, I was surprised to see that the site closes down, but really not so much.

Why these cycles? Hard to say; maybe human groups suffer of entropic effects, just as everything in the universe. But it is a fact of life that human associations start lively and die ossified. As Marcus Aurelius said in his "meditations" "Observe always that everything is the result of a change, and get used to thinking that there is nothing Nature loves so well as to change existing forms and to make new ones like them. "

So, if an ancient form is gone, we can work at making new ones.


Ugo Bardi is a member of the Club of Rome, faculty member of the University of Florence, and the author of "Extracted" (Chelsea Green 2014), "The Seneca Effect" (Springer 2017), and Before the Collapse (Springer 2019)