Addiction: an irrational desire to continually undertake an action that is harmful. One can be addicted to drugs, to gambling, to stunts. At a personal level it will sooner or later lead to a significant lowering in one’s lifestyle; possibly to one’s death.

Often the expression “addicted to oil” is used. Usually on a societal level. Saudi Arabia has held this moniker. And with a burgeoning state debt it may be realizing the consequences. While its per capita oil consumption is somewhat high, it likely has enough reserves to satisfy its citizen’s needs for quite a while. Yet its exports rely upon its oil reservoirs; over 75% worth. In the short term Saudi Arabia can keep playing the debt game whereby they spend more than they produce; addicted to a lifestyle as it were.

What will happen on a global scale as people get addicted to lifestyles that aren’t sustainable? Has a dependence upon readily accessible energy made us complacent; even lazy? Will there be a time when human lifestyles can’t be supported; whether depletion of readily accessible oil reserves or consumption of other critical resources? And if so then what sort of lifestyle awaits and how will we get there?