8 major things that are changing America.

A few things to consider for the upcoming presidential and congressional elections. Note that the next President will serve during these changes, which will occur more or less regardless of their ideologies and party affiliation as much of these predictions are either market driven or outside of immediate control. These are all fairly well established trends that are highly likely to accelerate. 2030 may be the longest out prediction for these occurrences. Given the trend in two term Presidencies, by 2024 this person will be staring down the barrel of this reality.

  1. Renewables will make electricity cheap. The cost for renewables is only going to go down faster, and implementation is beyond political control due to the market forces at the large scale utility generation and corporate levels. Residential will come along for the ride. You will all have cheap, clean electricity. Local generation and storage will vastly change the utilities industry.

2. Electric Vehicles are set to begin competition at near entry level car prices by 2020 or sooner. USA turnover of vehicles takes approximately 10 years. It’s possible the allure of cheap electricity, favorable driving dynamics and low maintenance will speed adoption.

3. Adoption of both 1. and 2. is happening much faster in the developing world similar to the adoption of cellular over land line communications where new infrastructure can be skipped. Needed infrastructure for moving oil and eventually natural gas will lessen. Even coal use in China has peaked.

4. Rising temperatures will be putting pressure on the food and water resources of the world, with NASA predictions of severe drought lasting at least 40–50 years. Worldwide changes will lead to mass migrations as this occcurs. Some of this will be very apparent by 2030.

5. World demand for oil will drop precipitously along the same rate as the growth of the above. Regardless of actions to drill more, there will not be demand, similar to coal now because of market realities. Economies reliant on the oil industry are at risk of similar outcomes or worse than what happened in Detroit. These areas in the USA are also the most at risk for drought, have higher mortality, more poverty, higher teen birth rates, less education, are more conservative and religious.

6. By 2030 (at the latest) we will see a completely different American and global society. Look to the decline in oil as a geopolitical tool to greatly change the world. Our ability to negotiate and with whom will be vastly different. Our energy independence and the change in foreign policies because of it will alter our military industrial complex. We may be fighting for other resources: water and food, minerals.

7. By 2030 at the latest Christians and Caucasians will be in the minority in the USA for the first time.

8. Major changes in social and political policy have occurred rapidly about every time a new generation matures and an older dies off. Again, around 2030 for millennials.

My youngest child will be leaving college right around the time the earliest of these predictions have come true.

How should we spend our time and energy as a society now, for our kids future, given these readily acceptable predictions?

UPDATE:

I wasn’t aware of it at the time I wrote this article, but there is a vocal Silicon Valley Entrepreneur who happens to also hold an M.B.A. from Stanford University Graduate School of Business and a B.S. in Computer Science and Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who beat me to these predictions. He and I see eye to eye, and you will have an even harder time denying these predictions after hearing him! He has been hitting the lecture circuit not for green energy initiatives, but major interests in oil/gas, car manufacturers and financial institutions like J.P. Morgan. I think his message is not what they want to hear.

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