Ending the Age of Scarcity
The energy, transport, food, information, and materials sectors are all undergoing rapid technological disruption. But with the right choices, we can rapidly build a more just and advanced civilization that provides unprecedented levels of universal and sustainable prosperity.
LONDON – The current escalation of multiple, overlapping crises – climate-related disasters, a pandemic, war in Europe, and stagflation – is intensifying anxiety and uncertainty the world over. Conventional solutions are no longer working. Politicians have few persuasive answers. Existing institutions are overwhelmed. Global civilization is in the throes of a great transformation of unprecedented scale.
Each of the five foundational sectors that together define a civilization – energy, transport, food, information, and materials – is undergoing rapid technological disruption. These upheavals signal the twilight of today’s dominant extractive industries, which are entering an economic death spiral, auguring higher unemployment, deeper inequality, and civil unrest.
But this “global phase shift” is also laying the foundations for a new civilizational life cycle. The most consequential technological disruptions aimed at mitigating climate change affect three foundational sectors – energy, transport, and food – that together account for 90% of global greenhouse-gas emissions.