Our Successful Future

181203 anpf 4 knoten smallHow will we as humanity survive the next hundred years? What do the upcoming challenges such as climate change, energy revolution and world hunger mean for us individually? In order to develop a positive perspective for our future, we must first understand our position as human beings in the world and how we are embedded in our environment. In order to show the essential interrelations, evaluations of publicly accessible data are presented and discussed. In this way, the essential connections are presented in a clear and comprehensible way. The overall picture developed in this way finally points out a clear direction for our actions, so that a sustainable and happy life on our small planet Earth will also be possible in the future.

Humanity has two main challenges, which are linked:

  • climate change increasing in the future, to be solved mainly technologically with sustainable energy transition,
  • world hunger already today, which can be solved easiest with behavioral changes, namely limiting number of children to two per couple and avoiding animal-based food.


Both are linked, because:

  • reduced population growth would also ease sustainable energy transition,
  • essentially all scenarios for a successful sustainable energy transition rely on increased use of bio-energy, which competes for the same land area as food production.


This situation is evaluated and visualized in detail showing that the situation is much worse than publicly realized.

  • World population may grow significantly faster than expected, leading to 11 billion instead of the ussually assumed 9.7 billion already in 2050. Only developing less developed countries may help stopping population growth. Thus, we also have to put significant effort in supporting such development on equal footing.
  • The 1.5°C climate goal is no longer reachable, if efforts don't instantaneously increase significantly. Sustainable energy transition is only possible, if efforts are increased by a factor of 6 in Europe and around 10 globally. Otherwise we will fail the 1.5°C climate goal. Even for the 2°C climate goal quick concerted global action is required. It is shown, how required efforts will increase further, if we delay fostering sustainable energy transition.
  • Bio-Energy has to be minimized, because otherwise world hunger will increase.
  • World hunger can be avoided by behavior change, i.e. 2 children per family and plant-based nutrition. These behavioral changes are much stronger than any technological progress. In the past population growth has literally eaten up the significant increase in agricultural productivity. If behavior is not changd, world hunger increases and/or agricultural productivity is forced to develop at utmost speed, which may not always be realized. Genetically modified crops are shown to not perform better than non-GM crops, i.e. can not be the solution. Support equal footing in supporting development may very well mean to connect this to measures to reduce population growth.
  • We have to rely on a working global economy, because only that can pay for the large changes in major industrial sectors that need to happen in the coming decades. During those changes, economies will be rather fragile, also because fossil feedstock prices can be foreseen to vary strongly and quickly. Thus - despite contributions to climate change - until the sustainable energy transition is mastered, we need to rely on stable fossil energy systems. They will automatically become obsolete once we have sustainable substitution. It is thus of much higher importance to foster deployment of sustainable energy technologies than to bash the current energy system.
  • Unfortunately the illustrative model pathways of the IPCC special report on 1.5°C climate change can be shown to be unrealistic. Also the EU sustainability strategy builds on unrealistic scenarios. Both make one or several of the following wrong or unfeasible assumptions:
    • too low population growth,
    • significant contribution of bio-energy,
    • replacing fossil energy system at a rate of 5% per year to reach the 2030 goals, where we currently replace roughly 0.6% per year...


Thus, the situation is much worse than generally realized. Nevertheless it is shown, how sustainable energy transition is possible: This requires systems view and behavioral changes. We are individually responsible for our choices and our behavior. We - individually - make the difference. But this has to be realized globally - and we have to act accordingly. Politics can not force behavioral changes, otherwise the politicians would not be re-elected, and technologies will not allow safely solving the hunger challenge, if population keeps growing at the current rate. So, only we as entities with direct personal free will and corresponding un-circumventable responsibility can solve the challenges.


The videos on Youtube (direct access to the entire YouTube playlist):

000 Short Summary

00 Summary & Consequences

01 Introduction, Summary

02 World Population

03 Sustainable Energy Transition

04 Food vs. Bio-Energy & Bio-Materials

05 A Word on IPCC Scenarios

06 A Short Word on EU Sustainable Energy Strategy

07 Exergy to Quantify Energy

08 Bio- or CO2-Economy

09 Individual and Political Consequences


Philosophical Aspects

10 The Physical Basis

11 Causality

12 Consciousness

13 Free Will and Responsibility


The slides shown as PDF:
Our Successful Future.pdf (25 MB)

Our Successful Future (new version) - Summary.pdf (10 MB)

So gelingt unsere Zukunft.pdf (9 MB, German, selected slides)

So gelingt unsere Zukunft (new version) - Zusammenfassung.pdf (9 MB, German)


Videos available in German (directly to the German YouTube playlist):

00 kurze Zusammenfassung

01 Zusammenfassung


The book (German):

So gelingt unsere Zukunft

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