A Civilization that delivers what we want

One important descriptor of every human being is that he or she wants tomorrow's life to be a little bit better than today's. This driving factor has produced art, science, technology, and social organization and each has raised lifestyles far above subsistence.

However, the same "wants" have produced a social organization that acts like a run away train. As presently designed, civilization is heading for collapse. The collapse is going to remove most of the good life and replace it with one much closer to subsistence. It's going to kill off most of us. And the remaining eco niche probably won't have enough left to rebuild the next civilization. The kids that survive the change will be stuck in a dark age.

If that is not what we want for our kids, then our challenge is to take these most immutable human wants and merge them with a cognitive process to create a future with ever-increasing wellbeing.

And this means designing a civilization that can deliver on these expectations. To deliver, this civilization has to satisfy two criteria. First human consumption, initially pegged at North American Life styles, must be in balance with the eco system's production. The resources that support this new community must be in continuous supply. Their production can not diminish.

Second, the community of individuals can not divert supporting resources to a project that will diminish the community's total wellbeing or the wellbeing of any individual in particular - for doing so would trigger the scarcity/conflict death spiral.

For this design, to fit into a sustainable niche on earth, or the support resources produced annually, it would have to have a footprint about 1/20 the current size. It's the footprint that can be supported without consuming non renewables. At least at our current efficiencies of converting resources to wellbeing.

To limit scarcity driven social conflict -- economic stratification must be reduced to an estimated 1/5 of its present size.

Since in our design requires both sustainability and peace, we have to take the product of these two fractions, 1/5 and 1/20 (which is 1/100) and multiply it times the present population of 7 billion to arrive at the population of the new community of 70 million. Given a little margin to allow individuals to continue to improve wellbeing while we move from the present community to the new one our design is for a global population of 50 million people.

As part of the design we have to decide where these 50 million live. Is it one contiguous location. Does it have only one large city and the rest of the community is scattered strategically in smaller cities and outlying villages on one continent. Or should the 50 million people between divided into 2 or more communities on several continents. The latter plan my prove to have prohibitive transportation costs but there is species resilience of not having all your eggs in one basket.

How is this group fed? How does it produce goods and services? How does it create human capital (education.) How does it create it's art and science and technology? How will this community transport people and goods

Part of the design would be the distribution of the community city vs country vs wilderness. If a city wanted a symphony or opera or theater it would have to have a minimum size to service the venture. Same is true for the critical mass of talent to support technological advancement e.g. a silicon valley.

We would have to determine what would be the energy sources and how the energy usage facilities would be strategically located.

The US 350 million people consume 100 quads at the plug, natural gas spigot and fuel pump. 50 million of us consuming at the same level would require 14 quads. And given that the energy would have higher production costs lets think 20 quads for our design.