Mankind is about to turn upside down economic self-evident truths, by the breakthrough of precision technologies like solar energy and precision agriculture, and by precision social arrangements like sharing instead of owning. So far, mankind could only produce more wealth by using more feedstock, depleting the earth’s resources and polluting the environment. Precision will end this practice. Precision will enable us to produce products better tuned to the needs of consumers, from less resources.
In order to reap these benefits of precision, mankind will have to change its habits, for instance in taxation. Like charging fossil and mineral resources, and facilitating recycling. Cheap renewable energy will allow us to curb fossil fuel recovery and stimulate circular practices like product longevity and reuse. It will allow us to develop new social arrangements like contracting out property, reuse and replacement of goods and services. It will allow us to upcycle materials, for instance from graphite in batteries to graphene in smartphones and chips, just to mention a futuristic option. Mankind will develop precision for application in smart materials and in machinery, and in producing and processing food, including processing agricultural side streams to new materials. We will be able to buy precision grown vegetables from mini greenhouses adjacent to the supermarket, reusing and recycling energy, packaging and leftovers. Producing just what is required will enable mankind to feed ten billion people, strongly reducing damage done to the planet. This book shows that we already have the required knowledge and know-how at hand.
The authors of this book have a very diverse background: in science, industry (national and international), science journalism, philosophy and sustainability. They are convinced that the transition to a sustainable energy system is the first step in a transition towards a sustainable society that will produce and distribute wealth with much greater precision.