Having looked at the major alternatives to fossil fuel energy production (summarized here), we come away with the general sentiment that the easy days of cheap energy are not evidently carried forward into a future without fossil fuels. In the slapdash scoring scheme I employed in the alternative energy matrix, the best performers racked up 5 points, whereas by the same criteria, our traditional fossil fuels typically achieved the near-perfect score of 8/10. The only consistent failing is in the abundance measure, which is ultimately what brings us all together here at Do the Math.
Fossil fuels are presently used in abundance — 85 percent of current energy use — but this is a short-term prospect, ending within the century. The first effects of decline may be close at hand. Do I hear talk of nursing homes?