Economic Growth and Resources: Natural Resources by Christopher Bliss

By Christopher Bliss

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3. It might well appear necessary over time to increase rather than decrease these elasticities. Our initial question as to the time for which the energy problem will impede our economic development and growth can now be answered at least in part. The development of appropriate economic strategies to clarify actual requirements for capital formation in the energy sector must be considered a key element. Genuine economic growth can certainly be organised on a slightly less rewarding but nearly infinite resource basis, and we have seen that technological options exist.

Whether or not such a development would take place depends on the constellation of many technical and economic parameters which can be dealt with only within the framework of a complex model such as the one developed by the research team on the ZENCAP-Project. a. a. Q ::tl "ti -s· ~ ~ I:: ~ .... ;::.. a. and continuing to rely on relatively inexpensive (fossil) sources is the 'cheapest' alternative. This scenario shows the importance of conserving energy by decreasing the growth rate of consumption.

It is the deuterium-tritium reactor. Tritium, which is not a natural resource, must be derived from lithium. The resource base for the fusion breeder is not defined by the abundant deuter(um but by lithium which would yield an energy equivalent of the order of 108 TW years. Waste disposal, containment of radioactivity, the use of liquid metals and other features of the two breeder types are similar in most respects [21]. Therefore speaking of the nuclear option in the following refers to either of the two breeder technologies.

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