By T. Vijayendra
Peak oil means when the production of petroleum products has reached a peak and hence forth it will only fall. This has already happened. It heralds the collapse of industrial societies. Cities are energy consumers, not producers. With the fossil fuel era coming to a close, and no viable alternative energy source visible on the horizon, cities as they exist today are unsustainable and dying. Their future depends on whether they can reinvent themselves radically—reduce their energy consumption drastically to come closer to that of their hinterlands, and distribute energy equitably to all their residents. Cuba and transition towns in North nations have already begun to go down this road. Many similar initiatives are occurring in urban India also.