Dr. Geert Vanden Bossche on Vaccination Policy Risks

At the end of this post I will add periodic updates on the case trend in Israel so that we can determine whether Bossche’s claims are likely true or false.


Geert Vanden Bossche, a vaccine expert with 3o years experience, thinks our vaccination policy has a high probability of causing the virus to mutate into variants that cause more serious illness, and that people who have been vaccinated will spread the virus rather than protecting those that have not been vaccinated, and that the immune systems of vaccinated people will be less effective at fighting future variants of the virus.

Bossche believes we are on the cusp of creating a global catastrophe and is asking the WHO to change course, and is calling on other scientists to engage in scientific review and debate of the risks.


Thanks to Nehemiah @ OFW for bringing Bossche to my attention.

I posted some of this material in the comments section of the last post, but after further review and thought, I decided it’s important enough to warrant its own post.

My initial reaction was to dismiss Bossche as yet another wack job / conspiracist / anti-vaxxer / pandemic denier. After reviewing Bossche’s credentials and thinking carefully about what he’s saying I concluded his concerns are worthy of consideration and may prove to be serious.

His message is a little difficult to understand because the topic is inherently complex, is not intuitive without some understanding of biology, and he speaks fast with an accent.

My objective of this post was to make it easier to understand Bossche’s key points, and to make all of his source information easily accessible.

In case any readers are wondering why I am distrustful of the authorities, it is because the biggest issue by far that we face, the danger of which far exceeds the virus, is human overshoot, the symptoms of which are climate change, non-renewable resource depletion, unsustainable debt, habitat destruction, and species extinction, which is completely ignored by our leaders, and the policies they have chosen are making much worse the future suffering that will be experienced when it is no longer possible to deny human overshoot. If our leaders don’t have a clue about the important issues, why would we trust them on lesser issues?


Here are the key points I think Bossche is making.

Note: If I have made any errors in summarizing Bossche I will promptly correct them when informed.

  • What is the big picture background?
    • We are conducting an unprecedented global experiment by broadly administering a vaccine in the middle of a pandemic, while having an imperfect understanding of pandemic science.
    • For example, we do not understand why pandemics usually have 3 waves before dying out. Or why pandemics often first attack old people and then shift to younger people in subsequent waves.
    • Given our imperfect understanding, our priority should be to do no harm.
    • Experts today are so specialized that very few have an integrated big picture view.
    • Our culture today is fixated on technology as being the solution to all of our problems.
  • Do our officials and experts have any bad intentions?
    • No.
    • The vaccines were developed by brilliant people in professional companies, have been properly tested for safety, and achieve the objective of preventing people from becoming sick when exposed to the virus.
  • Why have officials chosen a plan for mass vaccinations?
    • Their top priority is to prevent the medical system from crashing in the short term due to an overload of sick people. They are not thinking about the long term.
    • I would add, which Bossche did not mention, that governments are anxious to restart their economies because they know the system is fragile and susceptible to a deflationary crash, and because current emergency deficit spending is not sustainable.
  • What are the characteristics of the vaccines we’re using?
    • The vaccines prevent someone from becoming sick when exposed to the virus for which the vaccine was designed.
    • The vaccines do not kill the virus. A vaccinated person can spread the virus without showing any symptoms.
    • Bossche claims that the immune system of a vaccinated person will be less able to fight variants of the virus for which the vaccine is ineffective. In other words, an unvaccinated person may stand a better chance against future virus variants.
    • A vaccine is not like a drug that is eventually expelled by your body. A vaccine permanently reprograms your immune system software. Because of this, the precautionary principle is critical.
  • What are the problems with the current vaccination plan?
    • Mass vaccinations, in the middle of a pandemic, which do not kill the virus, and which keep the recipient healthy and thus less prone to spread the virus, will apply strong selection pressure to the virus for mutations that both evade the vaccine AND make people sicker.
    • If more deadly variants of the virus emerge we will not be able to outrace them with new vaccines. In other words, if we inadvertently create a more deadly variant, we have no exit plan.
  • Why did Bossche become alarmed, and why is he speaking up so late in the game?
    • Bossche’s studies of pandemic history suggest it is very unusual for more virulent strains to emerge late in a pandemic. When more virulent strains were reported in late 2020 he became concerned and suspected that our lock-down policies may have encouraged the virus to mutate. Then he thought about the implications of broadly vaccinating both healthy and unhealthy people and decided to pull the fire alarm.
  • What should we have done?
    • Protected vulnerable people with some combination of isolation and vaccinations.
    • Allowed the virus to spread and build natural immunity in the healthy portion of the population.
    • Encouraged lifestyles for healthy immune systems.
  • How will we know if Bossche is right?
  • What are the main arguments against Bossche’s concerns?
    • Some scientists do not think there is evidence for immune escape variants as Bossche predicts.
  • What does Bossche think individuals should do?
    • Promote a strong immune system with good diet, exercise, sleep, and some light exposure to the virus to train the immune system.
    • If you are young and/or healthy, delay being vaccinated until there is scientific consensus on Bossche’s concerns.
  • What do I think an individual should do?
    • Stay healthy as Bossche suggests, also take Vitamin D.
    • Have some Ivermectin on hand for self-treatment if required.
    • Prepare for the possibility in a few months of a more serious pandemic in which we might choose a self-imposed lockdown without access to grocery stores for some period of time.

WTF does this have to do with Denial?

I’m thinking that if the experts and authorities continue to ignore Bossche we will have another superb example of the human tendency to deny unpleasant realities as explained by Varki’s MORT theory.

Of course you can’t beat our collective denial of human overshoot, but this could be a close second if it unfolds as Bossche predicts.

Source Information

Here are Bossche’s credentials from Linkedin:


Profile: Experienced management professional; expert in vaccine R&D and early vaccine dvpt,; proficiency in program and grant management; used to working in a heavily interconnected environment (in private and nonprofit sector) while managing the needs of numerous stakeholders. Proven track record of success in designing and developing vaccines, managing dynamic, high-performing consortia, developing efficient processes to deliver impact, offering expert scientific-technical advice on complex immunisation projects, leading vaccine R&D work as CSO. Proficiency in program management, team leadership, patent writing, laboratory research, immunology, epidemiology, microbiology, vaccine technologies, preclinical vaccine dvpt. Substantial experience in strategic budgeting, CMC- and IP-related matters, incl. patent infringement and litigations. Over 2 decades of professional experience working in Europe and the US in managing implementation of immune interventions to address unmet medical needs. Highly familiar with major challenges in Global Health (as previously engaged with B. & M. Gates Foundation and GAVI).

Here is a March 1 keynote given by Bossche at the Vaccines Summit Ohio 2021 titled “Why should current Covid-19 vaccines not be used for mass vaccination during a pandemic”.

Here are the slides from the March 1 keynote:

Here is the March 6 post of his open letter:

Here is the full text of his open letter published on March 6:

Here is an excellent March 8 interview with Bossche:

Here is another March 6 interview, which I did not enjoy as much as the above interview:

Here is Bossche’s March 11 appeal to the WHO to change course:

Here is a March 12 statement from Bossche distancing himself from the crazies who are misrepresenting his concerns.

Here is a March 12 detailed rebuttal to Bossche’s claims which I skimmed but don’t understand. If anyone does understand this, please translate for us.

March 14 addition…

Here is another presentation by Canadian researcher Byram Bridle that supports Bossche’s claims.


My summary:

  • Historically it usually takes 10 years to develop a vaccine. The previous shortest record was 4 years.
  • There is a lack of peer reviewed data to assess the current vaccines.
  • Those that are being vaccinated now are participating in what was previously called a phase 3 trial during which they monitor the safety of the vaccines.
  • There have been historic examples of new vaccines where the short term safety profile was good but long term problems emerged after 2 years of use.
  • There is good reason to believe that the efficacy data being reported may prove to be optimistic.
  • Some countries (like Israel) are changing the protocol for administering the vaccines from what was tested and approved. That’s a apparently a big high risk no-no in this industry.
  • A total of 8 pregnant woman have been vaccinated, 4 of which aborted shortly thereafter.
  • The type of vaccines we have chosen, and the method we are using to roll out them out, is maximizing the probability that vaccine immune variants will emerge. He thinks it’s only a matter of time.
  • People who have been vaccinated will do less well against vaccine immune variants than people who have not been vaccinated.
  • Bridle predicts that in the end we will be forced to adopt the strategy that we should have adopted from the start which is to build natural herd immunity.
  • He’s cautiously optimistic that there may already be considerable herd immunity in countries like Canada that have not been locked down all the time and because the PPE we have been using is ineffective against the virus.
  • He personally will not take the vaccine because he has a low risk profile and prefers the broader protection of natural immunity. He thinks people with high risk profiles should consider taking the vaccine.
  • He predicts historians will document this period as the greatest mismanaged crisis of all time.

March 17 addition…

Here is a rebuttal to Bossche’s claims. I did not appreciate that ZDoggMD spent more time attacking Bossche’s character and making fun of his accent than he did discussing Bossche’s claims, of which he only addressed 2 of the 4 key points made by Bossche, and provided just as little hard data as Bossche did.

I don’t know who’s right. I’m going watch the Israel data over the coming weeks to decide.

March 20 update.

Israel cases are still trending down with 56% of population vaccinated.

March 31 update.

Israel cases still trending down with 57% of population vaccinated. No evidence yet that Bossche is right.

April 9 update.

Israel cases have leveled off with 58% of population vaccinated. No evidence yet that Bossche is right.

April 20 update.

Israel cases still flat. No evidence yet that Bossche is right.

April 28 update.

Bossche has a recently updated FAQ on his site which says we should not have to wait too many more weeks before his prediction comes true.


Q: How can it be explained that in Israel it seems that the massive vaccination has almost stopped the pandemic and no dramatic effects are being observed over people that have been vaccinated?

A: It’s just a matter of weeks for a surge in Israel to occur due to resistance of the virus to vaccinal antibodies in vaccinees. I expect this surge to occur before summer.

109 thoughts on “Dr. Geert Vanden Bossche on Vaccination Policy Risks”

  1. Exclusive interview with Prof Hugh Montgomery (only 75 views yet).
    “So for me it’s a no-brainer. Would I have the vaccine? Yes. Have I had the vaccine? Yes. Do I think the balance of risk and benefit is in favor of the vaccine? Overwhelmingly so.”


    1. Bossche agrees that cases should initially fall after mass vaccinations. Let’s watch Israel to see if cases increase in a month or so as Bossche predicts.


      Bossche agrees the vaccines are effective at preventing sickness.

      Montgomery says the virus will tend to mutate in people that have not been vaccinated, Bossche says the opposite, I don’t know who is right, but I do know bacterial infections tend to mutate in people that have taken an antibiotic that is not completely effective.


  2. The vid posted above by X – interview with Dr Hugh Montgomery – is excellent.

    The opinion of Bossche, a “vaccine expert” who is not a clinician and has never seen a patient in his life, is profoundly underwhelming.

    His perspective is stridently promoted at sites like “Virginia Christian Alliance,” whose mission is “to promote moral, social and scientific issues we face today from a Biblical point of view. ”

    from your summary:

    “What are the main arguments against Bossche’s concerns?
    “Some scientists do not think there is evidence for immune escape variants as Bossche predicts.”

    Exactly! If there’s no evidence for it, why pretend it’s happening?


    1. It seems many whack jobs are running with an incorrect interpretation Bossche’s warning. Let’s not talk about those crazy people here. Let’s discuss the substance of Bossche’s message.

      Is Bossche incorrect when he says it is very unusual for more infectious strains to emerge a year into a pandemic?


  3. “Is Bossche incorrect when he says it is very unusual for more infectious strains to emerge a year into a pandemic?”

    Yes, he is. Because the number of covid cases has risen exponentally over the past year, there’s been a huge opportunity for more infectious strains to emerge. Not only were the contagious variants a year into this pandemic not unusual; they were fully expected.

    In addition to the gigantic rise in covid cases, increasing population immunity, as well as longterm sick-with-covid individuals, have also led to these long-anticipated variants.

    But the variants are not what’s currently driving global transmission. The original virus is. The current need is to drive down transmission and thus cases; vaccines are crucial to meet that goal.

    I notice that 99.9% of those arguing against the covid vaccines are not real-world clinicians and view the issue through an idealized lens that doesn’t account for actual human behavior.

    “Stay healthy, ‘train your immune system’, take vitamin D – and keep ivermectin on hand in case you get sick?” People seriously think we should replace our covid vaccination campaign with this kind of advice?? It’s fine for educated readers of your blog should they choose to take that path (though I wouldn’t hold my breath about ivermectin saving you from much beyond lice and scabies). But for the real-world patients we work with every day, it’s ludicrous.


    1. Thank you for the intelligent reply. Let’s hope you are right.

      Bossche’s credentials look legit to me. Can we please have a link to your credentials?

      It will only take a few weeks to validate or disprove Bossche’s prediction which means most individuals in most countries do not need to make any decisions before we’ll know if Bossche is correct.


    2. The evidence in favor of Ivermectin is now so strong that we can draw conclusions about the competency and/or motives of our health officials if they do not act.

      My personal view is that health officials are not evil and not very bright.

      Liked by 1 person

    3. “Stay healthy, ‘train your immune system’, take vitamin D – and keep ivermectin on hand in case you get sick?” People seriously think we should replace our covid vaccination campaign with this kind of advice?? It’s fine for educated readers of your blog should they choose to take that path (though I wouldn’t hold my breath about ivermectin saving you from much beyond lice and scabies). But for the real-world patients we work with every day, it’s ludicrous.

      The advise I’ve got from the local health authority is to go the hospital if I get covid and I have difficulty breathing. Do you understand that by then it might be too late? There are studies that show ivermectin works against covid-19. You chose to ignore them. Here we go: https://covid19criticalcare.com/medical-evidence/ivermectin/.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I added the following paragraph to the background section above to clarify my motives for any new readers that are unfamiliar with my views.

    In case any readers are wondering why I am distrustful of the authorities, it is because the biggest issue by far that we face, the danger of which far exceeds the virus, is human overshoot, the symptoms of which are climate change, non-renewable resource depletion, unsustainable debt, habitat destruction, and species extinction, which is completely ignored by our leaders, and the policies they have chosen are making much worse the future suffering that will be experienced when it is no longer possible to deny human overshoot. If our leaders don’t have a clue about the important issues, why would we trust them on lesser issues?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I too want to see this debated. I have not gotten vaccinated for Covid yet. I am not an anti-vaxer and have had every vaccination possible (flu, pneumonia, shingles, tetanus, whatever). I firmly believe vaccination is generally a good thing. But something is rotten in the way this has all gone down. All Covid vaccines have been approved through Emergency Use Authorizations and all manufacturers have been indemnified by governments or have iron-clad liability shields. The Emergency Use Authorizations could only happen if there were no effective treatments for Covid – BUT THERE ARE. Hydroxychloroquine/Zinc, Ivermectin, Vit. D supplementation, have all been vilified in the MSM to provide the rationale for the Emergency Use Authorizations-even though clinical trials in non-USA countries support their use. AND vaccine manufacturers are making a killing economically. Additionally, the mRNA vaccines have not been tested long enough and are in essence a gene therapy experiment. All the bodies cells take up the mRNA and express the spike protein on their surface (or do they shed it?) to which the immune system responds. None of the mRNA vaccines provide immunity (which normal vaccines provide) they just lessen the severity of illness. Anyone want to correct this skeptic?

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Thank you. Now I understand what Justin below is saying.

          I think it’s possible to explain this without conspiracies. Take a not too bright politician who needs campaign funds to be re-elected so that he can feed his family, being persuaded by a confident charismatic lobbyist for the pharmaceutical industry who also needs to feed his family, and both are genuinely worried that if we don’t find a quick fix to getting the economy restarted we’ll be in even deeper trouble…

          Liked by 1 person

    1. Evolution is just a theory…

      [Rob here, the balance of this comment was deleted. Non-scientific opinions are not welcome on this blog. There are thousands of other sites that will welcome your views.]


      1. I guess, man, but if you think evolution is bunk, there is no need to worry yourself about a vaccine program backfiring.

        As for intelligent design, believe it or don’t believe it–not something really subject to proof.


        1. The problem with calling evolution a theory is that in ordinary usage (non-science), theory means something that has not been proven to a certainty. In science a theory is a hypothesis that is still subject to falsification (of parts but no necessarily the whole) but has substantial support by all the accumulated facts. I once heard a comment that evolution is a theory in biology, just like there is a Nuclear theory in physics. The people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki died from the bomb that the Nuclear theory created, so theories in science are more like laws in ordinary usage.

          Liked by 3 people

  5. Thank you for posting this. Why have ivermectin and other treatments been suppressed and often censored? Because an emergency use authorization can only be granted when there is no effective treatment. Let’s face it, Americans have been brainwashed into thinking health comes in a manmade drug. Americans in general are very unhealthy. With crap immune systems and low levels of vitamin D among other nutrients. Bossche may not be a clinician, but the powers that be are happy to suppress and ignore actual clinicians like the Front Line Alliance doctors who have absolutely gobs of clinical experience and have seen that ivermectin plus the other supporting nutrients (vitamin D, zinc, etc.) have been extremely effective. https://covid19criticalcare.com/i-mask-prophylaxis-treatment-protocol/

    And, oh, that little tiny thing about the unbelievable profitability of vaccines that are going to be given to millions and probably billions of people.

    The immense marketing job for these vaccines has shocked me and as someone who wants to wait and see a little while, I find it incredibly disappointing that people wonder what’s wrong with me for questioning authority, even fellow collapsitarians.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks for stopping by.

      I do not understand and am curious what your mean when you say “Because an emergency use authorization can only be granted when there is no effective treatment.”


      1. “Under an EUA, FDA may allow the use of unapproved medical products, or unapproved uses of approved medical products in an emergency to diagnose, treat, or prevent serious or life-threatening diseases or conditions when certain statutory criteria have been met, including that there are no adequate, approved, and available alternatives.”


        Also there have already been a great many trials with ivermectin:



        1. OK, now I know why I didn’t understand.

          Canada does not have an equivalent “emergency use authorization” for the vaccines. So that does not explain why Canadian health authorities do not discuss Ivermectin (or Vitamin D).


  6. “To be forewarned is to be forearmed”

    Here is a copy of my recently posted Goodreads book review for your reference and adjudication and hopefully it will assist and guide your own individual research on this important topic. The bottom line that speaks louder than words these days is – ‘ WHO THE HECK DO WE TRUST?’


    All the best,


    Personally, I am sitting on the fence regarding whether to vaccinate for COVID 19; Plus or not; as I am in the midst of researching and studying the topic as well as the corruption. cronyism and criminality that is seemingly pervasive though-out Big Pharma, Medicine, and Government. The book does not really deal with these issues in any depth and instead builds arguments and facts that only support its conclusion or original hypotheses and position – that vaccines are good – no matter what harm they cause a few people. That harm may be death or a permanent cognitive or physical disability caused by a reaction. The demonic attitude is – who cares about a few human tragedies when the greater good is served remains, without doubt; ruthless, callous, and myopic.

    A better approach to this hidden vaccination genocide would be to develop pre-tests that filter out people who are likely to have an adverse reaction. This way we can mitigate the human tragedies and deaths associated with vaccines or drugs and at the same time serve the greater good. (Plus these crooks could make more MONEY- go figure) Moreover, the vaccinated populations need to be monitored for long-term physical or psychological side effects from cradle to grave. We do not for example want to create neurological disorders later in life. There are enough dumbed-down politicians, psycho-paths, and clowns being elected already.

    Another key point is that we live in a free society and democracy; whereby it is an inalienable human right that we must have access to all the clinical studies and complete research regarding any drug or vaccine in order that we can personally adjudicate the information and the testing of populations, Experts have done a poor job and are generally biased in this regard. Doctors individually do not always look at this information because they are just too busy and don’t have the time to read boring 800-page reports weekly, They in turn rely on colleagues’ opinions or biased sources. Some clinical trials are for instance conducted on monkeys – I personally would have little faith in their clinical outcomes.

    In conclusion, this book brings out a number of important issues on both sides of the debate, but it is not a balanced approach to discourse and fails to provide clinical solutions to critical therapeutic problems and hidden genocides such as the opioids crisis that has caused over 450,000 death over the past 20-years. (How many Viet-Nam wars does that equal?) In short, it was as if BIG pharma, medicine, and government were consulted about every sentence with little concern for our human and democratic rights. That’s unacceptable.

    IN GOVERNMENT WE TRUST – really???


    “whoopee, we are all going to die…”


    But, it is just what the doctor ordered…

    Recommended Readings:

    Bad Pharma: How Drug Companies Mislead Doctors and Harm Patients

    Lies My Doctor Told Me: Medical Myths That Can Harm Your Health

    Further Readings

    The Truth About the Drug Companies: How They Deceive Us and What to Do About It

    Medical Industrial Complex (The Underground Knowledge Series, #3)

    Deadly Medicines and Organised Crime: How Big Pharma Has Corrupted Healthcare

    Virus Mania: How the Medical Industry Continually Invents Epidemics, Making Billion-Dollar Profits at Our Expense

    Side Effects: Death. Confessions of a Pharma-Insider


    1. Good review. I would add two comments:

      1) It is possible to do the wrong thing and not be evil. I forget who said something like, “tell me how a man makes his living and I will tell you what he believes”.

      2) Some aspects of biology, and some of the technologies we now use, are so complex that in some cases it is impossible to know what is “true”. In these cases I go back to foundations that are solid, like the laws of thermodynamics, and not assuming we can out-smart evolution.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Thank you. This list explains the issues well (which I learned about two decades ago from my children’s doctors). The issues are also very thoroughly presented with links to relevant medical research and reports at the National Vaccine Information Center organization website (which has been slandered and smeared by bad corporate actors with infinitely deep pockets because of the potential for the information to incriminate them and hurt their bottom line). Yes, there is no reason to believe all involved are evil by any stretch, but sadly I believe evidence suggests there are bad actors at the very top of this hugely profitable, liability-free, money-making, taxpayer-fleecing scheme. All four manufacturers of the vaccines mandated in this country are felons (at least one, Pfizer, is a serial felon), who have paid billions in fines for the thousands of lives lost and harms caused that records show they knew would happen when they released their toxic products (eg., Vioxx). We need to ask if our system to protect consumers is intact, why did no one from these companies go to jail when these convictions, which amounted in the Vioxx case at least to deliberate mass murder, occurred? The now much-maligned and slandered Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., covers this topic (which he seems well-qualified, as a lawyer with a history fighting corporate corruption on behalf of environmental protections, to do) at his Children’s Health Defense organization website. There you will also find documented an email exchange between RFK, Jr. and Dr. Frances Collins of the NIH, regarding a request from CHD of the NIH & CDC made last summer, to use now extensive gov’t supercomputer search capabilities to search the CDC database to compare overall health outcomes between vaccinated and unvaccinated populations. RFK, Jr., argued this could potentially go a long way to remediating the vaccine hesitancy that has arisen if it exonerates advocates for mandated vaccines. It has the advantage of also avoiding the ethical issues cited by vaccine manufacturers with employing longer term double blind placebo studies that potentially withhold life-saving medicine from placebo subjects. It violates no medical privacy. Safety of vaccines and a true comparison of overall health outcomes, and hence a true whole picture of risks vs. benefits has never, so far as I know, been achieved for mandated products given to healthy children and adults for this reason. We now have the possibility of fixing that. However, the NIH & CDC refused. This is telling to me, and not in a good way.


  7. A concise yet thorough overview of this concern, Rob, thanks.

    Though I’ve had two doses of the Moderna vaccine I’m fully willing to consider Bossche’s argument (and to fully accept it if it proves accurate). I’m not saying I agree with it, as I question whether or not the mRNA vaccines actually do have a similar effect on the innate immune system as do misuse of antibiotics. But I think it’s essential that his argument be thoroughly discussed so that those of us willing to think critically about this matter can come to a better understanding, and potential resolution, of it.

    It’s most unlikely that the general public, “representatives” of that public, and the scientific community will acknowledge, objectively reflect upon, and engage in public dialogues on Bossche’s concern. There is too much corruption, greed, and stupidity within all of these groups of people for that to happen.

    It’s clear that persons with CTD (Conspiracy Theory Disorder) have already pounced on Bossche’s argument like fresh prey to spread their idiocy as their disorder persuades (forces?) them to do. I’m not referring to persons commenting here on this post, other than “bon giovanni”.

    The bottom line: we’ll (critical thinkers, not those with CTD) soon learn if Bossche’s argument is or isn’t correct.


      1. “tell me how a person makes his living and I will tell you what he believes”. Interesting interview by two BigPharma captives. Almost any person in a position of prestige at a world renown research institution like UCSF will be on the indirect payroll of BigPharma (speaking fees, research funding(even NIH funding comes indirectly from BigPharma), honoraria, etc.). Doesn’t mean they are wrong just that they need some skeptical/critical questioning – not the PBS fawning easy questioning. Ask them why there was no Ivermectin rollout or even hydroxychloroquine. Ask them why there has never been a successful vaccine for a coronavirus before? Ask them to respond to Dr. Bossche?

        Liked by 2 people

  8. I have no qualifications that allow me to have an opinion about Viruses.
    I think I can fairly observe:
    This is a “new” virus
    We have never had almost 8 billion potential new hosts for a virus
    We have never tried a mass vaccination of the larger part of those 8 Billion
    We have never masked up, socially distanced, and put up plastic partitions between people for a year – what are the future health consequences of isolating ourselves for a year?
    Understanding all aspects of this situation is beyond the cognitive capacity of any one expert person to fully grasp.
    From reading various sources, my guess is that no model (like a climate model) exists to model the scenario described above, the growth and spread of variants etc.
    As pointed out by other commenters above, governments are under pressure to prevent economic collapse, billions of dollars at stake for drug companies, etc. – there is intense pressure against seeing the situation objectively and intense pressure to act in the near term rather than longer term.
    So my assumption is we really don’t know how this will turn out.
    I had COVID last October, I don’t recommend it.

    P.S. I also don’t think we know how a $1.9Trillion dollar spending plan will work out for the U.S Another example of where we are acting outside of our cognitive capacity to understand the consequences. Lots of smart people and experts have different opinions about the consequences of this spending plan. All I can say is that unintended consequences seem inevitable.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I designed and managed the design of computer hardware and software products for 25 years. We worked very hard to meet tight deadlines and tested our products as carefully as possible, but our new products always had defects that needed to be fixed after they were shipped.

      When was the last time you installed an app on your phone that didn’t need to be updated?

      I see Israel has already vaccinated 9.3 million people. I’ve been to Israel 3 times. It’s the perfect environment for an experiment. Let’s watch what happens. Maybe we’ll get lucky this time.


    2. Every action as a reaction. Often unexpected.

      The US stimulus checks are putting pressure on the banking system because of the new reserve requirements. They may soon be forced to change the regulations and make the banks more risky again.


  9. Kurt Cobb today…


    Preliminary data suggest that some of the variants may evade the protections of existing vaccines and lessen the effectiveness of various treatments. So concerning are these variants that one of the world’s leading epidemiologists is recommending a reversal of the recent re-opening steps being taken in the United States and elsewhere across the world.

    Whether that advice will turn out to be warranted is likely to be tested in the next several weeks as U.S. states and foreign countries move forward with re-opening despite the rapid rise of new variants. This is all happening against the backdrop of Italy returning to a lockdown for much of the country due to the rapid spread of these COVID-19 variants.

    Of even greater concern is the possibility that COVID-19 is here to stay and may continue churning out variants that defy our attempts to vanquish the virus. No one knows for certain what that might look like. It could be that COVID-19 becomes a seasonal disease returning each year like the flu. It could become milder in its effects. That would be an adaptive evolutionary strategy for the virus since killing one’s host is not a good way to spread. COVID-19 could be banished in some places, only to pop up periodically.

    Rather than recognizing that we are part of nature, we continue to do the equivalent of mobilizing for war against nature. We want to stamp out COVID-19 and finish it for good. But it never occurs to us that COVID-19 might not yield to our warlike brigades now dressed in lab coats and nurse’s uniforms.


  10. The very first civilizations invested all of their surplus wealth in building giant structures for life after death.

    That’s because behaviorally modern humans exist because we evolved to deny mortality (and other unpleasant realities) as explained by Varki’s MORT theory.


    Planet Egypt: Secrets of the Pharaohs Empire

    Quest for Eternity asks how Egypt’s belief in the afterlife could be part of its long term success. How could a society apparently obsessed with death survive for so long? We discover that Egypt’s specific belief in the afterlife was essential to the longevity of her civilization. The Egyptians liked their life so much; they wanted it to continue after their demise. Egypt’s belief in the afterlife provided focus for the population for more than 3000 years.

    From the days of the first Pharaoh’s tombs to the end of their era, Egyptians were united by one burning desire: to extend their lives to all eternity. This is why they built the gigantic pyramids, the splendid temples and the magnificent tombs that have become the hallmark of Egyptian civilization. The cult of the dead also became an important commercial factor. It was both an emotional bond and a way of glorifying life. The Egyptians regarded their existence on the Nile as paradise on Earth. It was in order to extend this paradise to all eternity that they developed visions of the afterlife in elaborate detail.

    To unravel the secrets of this seemingly morbid obsession with death, episode 4 of Planet Egypt examines Egypt’s most elaborate tomb builder – Ramses the Great. His long rule is also considered Egypt’s Golden Age. Ramses became the biggest tomb builder in Egyptian history. Excavations in Egypt’s oldest royal cemetary and in the famous Valley of the Kings help archaeologists track down the mysteries of the Egyptian afterlife. Planet Egypt also investigates the magical rituals associated with the Egyptian death cult, from mummification to the tradition of equipping the dead body with all items that could possibly be required after death.

    The film discovers how the ancient Egyptians crafted an intricate balance between the world of the living and what lies beyond. Strange as it seems, Egypt’s celebration of death holds the secret to the culture’s longevity.


  11. If anybody tells you that these vaccines are NOT experimental have them watch this terrific presentation by Dr. Bridle who is an associate professor and viral immunologist in the Department of Pathobiology at the University of Guelph.:

    What an eye opener. Confirms Dr. Geert Vanden Bossche on Vaccination Policy Risks and explains a whole lot more.

    Worth listening through to the very end.
    Spoiler alert – he’ll tell you that he wouldn’t get the jab himself!


    1. Thanks!

      That was a superb presentation by another expert, and someone we can definitely trust because he’s a Canadian. 🙂

      Bridle indeed confirmed what Bossche said.

      Here are his credentials:

      Some of the key points that stood out for me:

      • Historically it usually takes 10 years to develop a vaccine. The previous shortest record was 4 years.
      • There is a lack of peer reviewed data to assess the current vaccines.
      • Those that are being vaccinated now are participating in what was previously called a phase 3 trial during which they monitor the safety of the vaccines.
      • There have been historic examples of new vaccines where the short term safety profile was good but long term problems emerged after 2 years of use.
      • There is good reason to believe that the efficacy data being reported may prove to be optimistic.
      • Some countries (like Israel) are changing the protocol for administering the vaccines from what was tested and approved. That’s a apparently a big high risk no-no in this industry.
      • A total of 8 pregnant woman have been vaccinated, 4 of which aborted shortly thereafter.
      • The type of vaccines we have chosen, and the method we are using to roll out them out, is maximizing the probability that vaccine immune variants will emerge. He thinks it’s only a matter of time.
      • People who have been vaccinated will do less well against vaccine immune variants than people who have not been vaccinated.
      • Bridle predicts that in the end we will be forced to adopt the strategy that we should have adopted from the start which is to build natural herd immunity.
      • He’s cautiously optimistic that there may already be considerable herd immunity in countries like Canada that have not been locked down all the time and because the PPE we have been using is ineffective against the virus.
      • He personally will not take the vaccine because he has a low risk profile and prefers the broader protection of natural immunity. He thinks people with high risk profiles should consider taking the vaccine.
      • He predicts historians will document this period as the greatest mismanaged crisis of all time.


      1. I agree. Highly informative. Looks like here in Australia and our neoghbours New Zealand may have some troubles ahead.
        Thanks for the link.


          1. Another interesting country is Czechia. They have been very hard hit and are on the way down from their full third wave with a low vaccination rate (12%). They should be an excellent candidate for natural herd immunity.


    2. Jeremy is it possible that you could add a sharable link for this zoom call? I want to send it to every politician in Canada, as well as to friends in the US who can share with theirs. Thank you for sharing this here, great info.


  12. The following was sent by me to a prominent researcher on Feb 3rd that fell on deaf ears.

    I’m wondering about a possible connection to the testing of the AstraZeneca covid vaccine and the outbreak of the hyper virulent new strains. It appears a strange coincidence to me that AstraZeneca tested their vaccine in the very places the the new versions of covid have emerged. Testing was done in UK, South Africa, and Brazil per the study. Excerpt below.

    Data from three single-blind randomized controlled trials in the UK (COV001/COV002), Brazil(COV003), and one double-blind study in South Africa (COV005) are included in this exploratory analysis as all four trials now meet the required criteria for inclusion of having atleast 5 primary outcome cases. The data cut-off date for cases to be included in the current report was December 7, 2020.”

    Study linked at zero hedge: https://www.zerohedge.com/covid-19/oxford-releases-latest-data-showing-astrazeneca-jab-82-france-limits-it-patients-under-65

    Then we get stories like this one in January from CNBC

    “News of the variant in Brazil comes after two separate mutant strains of the virus were discovered in the U.K. and South Africa earlier this year.”

    Link to CNBC: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/01/15/brazil-a-new-covid-variant-has-been-discovered-heres-what-we-know-so-far.html

    Is this just coincidence or is it possible those vaccinated are shedding the new strain into the wild? This type of research is way out of my wheelhouse and I’ve followed your research since the 90’s, and I though if anyone can get to the bottom of this it would be you as I know you’ve been keeping up with this.

    Thanks for you great work over the years.


  13. Nehemiah today with a different take on why we deny reality…


    EV’s will also require more electric production than we can currently provide. Their boosters deny this, but even Elon Musk has said it is so.

    “The mining industry accounts for 10% of world energy consumption”
    and a substantial fraction of this is from electricity, maybe 20 or 30 percent (it appears to vary by country, and also by type of mine), and the rest tends to come from diesel or natural gas.

    The attempted green energy revolution will use huge amounts of mined materials, even as those minerals are becoming scarcer and therefore more energy intensive per ton extracted. I doubt that this increased energy cost has been included in the EROI’s of solar and wind (since they were EROI’s at the time of calculation, not future EROI’s), but those EROI’s will definitely fall if the world’s politicians are serious about a green energy transition. Frankly, I think dreamer politicians who don’t understand hard sciences or engineering will steer the ship onto the rocks faster than it would get there on its own.

    Just as fossil fuels face declining EROI’s, the indirect dependence of green energy on fossil fuels means their EROI’s are declining too–unless we try to go to 100% renewables for power, but then we will need storage capacity (buffering), which will also drop the EROI.

    “Sustainable development” is the impossible dream. Why have greens/environmentalists hitched their wagon to an illusion? I can think of three reasons:

    One, the illusion that life as we know it can continue is much easier to sell to the public. As Dick Cheney said, “The American way of life is not up for negotiation.” Ironically, Greens seem to have moved into the hated Cheney’s corner on this point. “We must all lower our standard of living” is hard to sell.

    Two, Communists infiltrated the movement after the fall of the USSR, and old line Marxists are believers in growth and industry. Their vision of the future was always about building a material paradise in this world, not living for the world to come.

    Three, the Green/environmentalist movement has always been controlled by social liberals. Theological and cultural conservatives have never been welcome, and social liberalism is a by product or externality or “emergent property” of industrial capitalism. If we return to a world of mostly tiny cities surrounded by larger populations of peasant farmers, while vast national welfare states are replaced by dependence on extended families and religious communities, social liberalism will be as dead as it was in the Middle Ages.

    Illusions may have no future, but if people want them to be true badly enough, the temptation to ignore reality until it begins to devour them is hard to resist. Socially liberal values and lifestyles are dependent on industrial civilization and its ability to empower the individual by freeing him from dependence on the patriarchal family and religious authority, those values in turn are cherished very strongly my many today as a morally superior worldview because the liberty of the individual to make his own, unimpeded choices in life is perceived as sacred, and finally people are strongly disinclined to cast their sacred values “under the bus.” So it is renewable energy or perish, because that is the only way to preserve the new sacred canopy of Late Modernity. To return to a pre-industrial way of life is unthinkable for many Moderns, and not merely because of the inconveniences and hardships of such a life, but because they detest the moral system that governs life in an energy-poor environment. Malthusian insights have become a victim of the culture wars.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Since a lot of long time doomers congregate here. Does anyone else feel kind of on the edge of the proverbial cliff? Maybe the lockdown has an effect on my mental health but I’m feeling more anxious than usually about the state of the world, or more precisely the human global civilization. Everywhere you look, so many systems are stretched thin and look like they might brake soon. Economy, Ecology or Society, you name it. I too, am not new to this but I can’t recall that it ever felt like this.


    1. All of the important warning lights have been flashing red on our dashboard for about 10 years. It’s not one thing, it’s all the important things: climate, energy, debt, non-renewable resources, pollution, species extinction, and falling standards of living. Social unrest is building because people like you sense something is very wrong.

      I started this blog because I was (and continue to be) amazed that almost none of our citizens or leaders discuss our problems in an open and adult manner. When we do discuss issues like climate change and peak oil, we do so in a superficial manner and make assumptions that are obviously impossible using high school level science. Our elections don’t even whisper about the important issues.

      I wanted to explore WHY an incredibly intelligent species was willfully accelerating towards an obvious cliff.

      My main goal for this blog is to bring attention to a new theory by Dr. Ajit Varki called Mind Over Reality Transition (MORT) that explains both the emergence of our species with uniquely powerful intelligence, and our aggressive denial of unpleasant realities.


      With more awareness of this theory I thought we might wake up and act to reduce future suffering.

      My plan’s not working.


  15. Nehemiah is on a roll today at OFW. He’s one of the few commenters there that I regularly read.

    Here is his take on the pandemic and our economic problems, followed by an advanced summary of what we know about EROI.

    My take away is that when EROI falls below 10, things will go from bad to worse, in a non-linear hurry.

    EROI has been falling for years and we’re now pretty much at the critical 10 threshold.

    This kind of thread reminds me of the good old days at the now defunct Oil Drum site, the archive of which you can check out here: http://theoildrum.com/special/archives .


    Most western countries just badly mismanaged the pandemic from the very beginning. Things could have been very different, as in very better. Democracy as it is currently structured seems to lead to governments of low competence.

    Most of our econ problems now are due to financial mismanagement: too much debt, no fiscal discipline, an unwillingness to tolerate the normal operation of the business cycle, excess industrial and financial concentration and no trust busting to maintain competition, zero interest rate policies, lax enforcement of financial regulations coupled with excessive regulation of business in general, regulatory capture by big business and no push back against it, too many poor, under-educated immigrants being allowed in to compete with the citizens, the US acting as a unilateral importer of first resort to maintain the globalist economic agenda, needless wars and excessive military spending.

    Energy is not yet our primary problem, although it will be soon enough. Right now the EROI of the total energy system, and even of oil in particular, is still above 10, and there is not a huge difference between an EROI of 10 versus 100. But as it falls below 10, each additional increment of decline becomes much more burdensome than it was at higher EROI levels:

    QUOTE: The following points seem clear from a review of the literature: (i) the EROI of global oil production is roughly 17 and declining, while that for the USA is 11 and declining; (ii) the EROI of ultra-deep-water oil and oil sands is below 10; (iii) the relation between the EROI and the price of oil is inverse and exponential; (iv) as EROI declines below 10, a point is reached when the relation between EROI and price becomes highly nonlinear; and (v) the minimum oil price needed to increase the oil supply in the near term is at levels consistent with levels that have induced past economic recessions. From these points, I conclude that, as the EROI of the average barrel of oil declines, long-term economic growth will become harder to achieve and come at an increasingly higher financial, energetic and environmental cost.

    Murphy & Hall [3] examined the relation between EROI, oil price and economic growth over the past 40 years and found that economic growth occurred during periods that combined low oil prices with an increasing oil supply. They also found that high oil prices led to an increase in energy expenditures as a share of GDP, which has led historically to recessions. Lastly, they found that oil prices and EROI are inversely related (figure 2), which implies that increasing the oil supply by exploiting unconventional and hence lower EROI sources of oil would require high oil prices. This created what Murphy & Hall called the ‘economic growth paradox: increasing the oil supply to support economic growth will require high oil prices that will undermine that economic growth’.

    Other researchers have come to similar conclusions to those of Murphy & Hall, most notably economist James Hamilton [47]. Recently, Kopits [50], and later Nelder & Macdonald [49], reiterated the importance of the relation between oil prices and economic growth in what they describe as a ‘narrow ledge’ of oil prices. This is the idea that the range, or ledge, of oil prices that are profitable for oil producers but not so high as to hinder economic growth is narrowing as newer oil resources require high oil prices for development, and as economies begin to contract due largely to the effects of prolonged periods of high oil prices. In other words, it is becoming increasingly difficult for the oil industry to increase supply at low prices, since most of the new oil being brought online has a low EROI. Therefore, if we can only increase oil supply through low EROI resources, then oil prices must apparently rise to meet the cost, thus restraining economic growth.

    we should remember that the average oil price during periods of economic growth over the past 40 years was under $40 per barrel, and the average price during economic recessions was under $60 per barrel (dollar values inflation adjusted to 2010) [3]. What these data indicate is that the floor price at which we could increase oil production in the short term would require, at a minimum, prices that are correlated historically with economic recessions.

    Heun & de Wit [15] found a statistically significant correlation between the Divisia EROI for global oil and gas production and global oil prices. The equation they tested…. indicates that the price of oil increases exponentially as EROI declines. They suggest that the nature of the relation between EROI and the price is such that the effect on price becomes highly nonlinear as EROI declines below 10.

    King & Hall [13] examined the relation between EROI, oil prices and the potential profitability of oil-producing firms, termed energy-producing entities (EPEs). They found that for an EPE to receive a 10% financial rate of return from an energy extraction process, which, for example, has an EROI of 11, would require an oil price of roughly $20 per barrel.3 Alternatively, a 100% financial rate of return for the same extraction project would require $60 per barrel (figure 3). King & Hall also echoed Heun & de Wit, suggesting that the relationship between EROI and profitability becomes nonlinear when the EROI declines below 10.

    — there appears to be a negative exponential relationship between the aggregate EROI of oil production and oil prices;

    — there appears to be a comparable relationship between EROI and the potential profitability of oil-producing firms;

    — the relationship between EROI and profitability appears to become nonlinear as the EROI declines below 10; and

    — the minimum oil price needed to increase global oil supply in the near term is comparable to that which has triggered economic recessions in the past.

    [My comment: an economy in recession consumes energy more slowly, allowing prices to fall from weaker demand, but it still consumes; even if prices are too low to justify new drilling, eventually enough wells will deplete to the point that the world is producing less oil than even a depressed economy is consuming, forcing buyers into a bidding war and driving prices higher, which will allow increased drilling and production, but not necessarily at prices that will allow the economy to recover. The economy could become mired in a permanent depression, with the economy spending less time in failed recoveries (that never get back to the expansion phase) than in contractions. If end users purchase more energy for more money (resources), they will have less money (resources) for making other purchases, and so consumption and production will fall. Conversely, if they spend the same amount of their budget (resources) on higher priced energy, they will be consuming less energy, and therefore the economy will contract because energy is necessary to fuel the work that produces goods and services.]

    The mathematical relation between EROI, net energy and gross energy can be used to explain why, at around an EROI of 10, the relation between EROI and most other variables, such as price, economic growth and profitability, becomes nonlinear.

    …an EROI of 5 will deliver to society 80% of the gross energy extracted as net energy, while an EROI of 2 will deliver only 50%. This exponential relation between gross and net energy means that there is little difference in the net energy provided to society by an energy source with an EROI above 10, whether it is 11 or 100, but a very large difference in the net energy provided to society by an energy source with an EROI of 10 and one with an EROI of 5. This exponential relation between gross and net energy flows has been called the ‘net energy cliff’ [53] and it is the main reason why there is a critical point in the relation between EROI and price at an EROI of about 10 (figure 4).

    Much like organisms, economies also have energy requirements that must be met before any investments in growth can be made. Indeed, researchers are now measuring the ‘metabolism of society’ by mapping energy consumption and flow patterns over time [54].4 For example, economies must invest energy simply to maintain transportation and building infrastructure, to provide food and security, as well as to provide energy for direct consumption in transportation vehicles, households and business, etc. The energy flow to society must first pay all of these metabolic energy costs before enabling growth, such as constructing new buildings, roads, etc.

    Building off this idea of societal metabolism, we can gain additional insight into the relationship between EROI and economic growth by differentiating between three main uses of energy by society: metabolism, which could be described as the energy and material costs associated with the maintenance and replacement of populations and capital depreciation (examples include food consumption, bridge repair or doctor visits); consumption, which is the expenditure of energy that does not increase populations or capital accumulation and is not necessary for metabolism (examples include purchasing movie tickets or plane tickets for vacation; in general, this category represents items purchased with disposable income); and growth, which is the investment of energy and materials in new populations and capital over and above that necessary for metabolism (examples include building new houses, purchasing new cars, increasing populations).

    Figure 5a–d illustrates how the flows of energy to the three categories change as EROI declines. Let us assume that the metabolism of Economy A requires the consumption of 5000 units of energy per year. So, of the 10 000 units of energy extracted, 1000 must be reinvested to produce the next 10 000, and another 5000 are invested to maintain the infrastructure of Economy A. This leaves 4000 units of net energy that could be invested in either consumption or growth (figure 5a).

    As society transitions to lower EROI energy sources, a portion of net energy that was historically used for consumption and/or growth will be transferred to the energy extraction sector. This transfer decreases the growth and consumption potential of the economy. For example, let us assume that, as energy extraction becomes more difficult in Economy A, it requires an additional 1000 units of energy (2000 total) to maintain its current production of gross energy, decreasing the EROI from 10 to 5 and the net energy from 9000 to 8000. If the metabolism of the economy remains at 5000 units of energy, Economy A now has only 3000 units of energy to invest in growth and/or consumption (figure 5b).

    If the EROI for society were to decline to 2, the amount of energy that could previously be invested in growth and consumption would be transferred completely to the energy extraction sector. Thus, given the assumed metabolic needs of Economy A in this example, an EROI of 2 would be the minimum EROI needed to provide enough energy to pay for the current infrastructure requirements of Economy A, or, to put it another way, an EROI of 2 would be the minimum EROI for a sustainable Economy A. If the EROI were to decline below 2, for example in some biofuel systems [31], then the net energy provided to society would not be enough to maintain the infrastructure of Economy A, resulting in physical degradation and economic contraction (figure 5d).

    it is important to remember that this is a simple example with hypothetical numbers, and, as such, the minimum EROI for our current society is probably, and maybe substantially, higher.

    ‘Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place.’The Red Queen, in Through the looking-glass [55, p. 15]

    Another way to explore the impact that a decline in EROI can have on net energy flows to society is to consider the ‘gross energy requirement ratio’ (GERR). The GERR indicates the proportional increase or decrease in gross energy production that is required to maintain the net energy flow to society given a change in the EROI of the energy acquisition process. The GERR is calculated by dividing the gross energy requirement (GER) of the substitute energy source by the GER of the reference energy source. The GER is the minimum amount of gross energy production required to produce one unit of net energy. Both of these equations are outlined below

    For example, the average barrel of oil in the USA is produced at an EROI of roughly 11 [9]. Using equation (5.1), an EROI of 11 results in a GER of 1.1, i.e. 1.1 units of gross energy must be extracted to deliver 1 unit of net energy to society, with the 0.1 extra being the amount of energy required for the extraction process. For comparison, delivering one unit of net energy from an oil source with an EROI of 5 would require the extraction of 1.25 units of oil. If conventional oil at an EROI of 11 is our reference GER, and our substitute energy resource has an EROI of 5, then the GERR is 1.14. This GERR value indicates that, if society were to transition from an energy source with an EROI of 11 to one with an EROI of 5, then gross energy production would have to increase by 14% simply to maintain the same net energy flow to society. The net effect of declining EROI is to increase the GERR…

    The most recent estimates indicate that the EROI of conventional oil is between 10 and 20 globally, with an average of 11 in the USA. The future of oil production resides in unconventional oil, which has, on average, higher production costs (in terms of both money and energy) than conventional oil, and should prove in time to have a (much) lower EROI than conventional oil. Similar comments apply to other substitutes such as biofuels. The lack of peer-reviewed estimates of the EROI of such resources indicates a clear need for further investigation.

    Transitioning to lower EROI energy sources has a number of implications for global society. First, it will reallocate energy that was previously destined for society towards the energy industry alone. This will, over the long run, lower the net energy available to society, creating significant headwinds for economic growth.

    [My comment: lowering the net energy available to society does not create “significant headwinds for economic growth,” it outright contracts the real economy. Economic growth (usually measured by GDP) is the increased production of goods and services, but increasing production requires increased work (by men, animals, or machinery), and increased work requires increased energy, because that is what energy is: “the ability to do work.” Less energy=less work=production of FEWER goods and services, i.e,. recession/depression.]


  16. Hi Rob

    The EROI discussion above obscures some important details, I believe. It also misses important points about how fossil fuels are leveraged to perform work in the economy, and therefore how much the economy is levered to fossil fuels burning, and oil in particular. Jean-Marc Jancovici and others make some of these points directly or indirectly in their presentations.

    Most EROI references are for Point of Use EROI, or extended EROI. For oil, my understanding is this means EROI is calculating the energy available in gasoline, diesel, and kerosene at the point of the delivery of those fuels to the users.
    The large majority of the energy in the economy comes from burning fossil fuels in internal combustion engines (ICEs) and turbines. It is the power from those ICEs that drives economic activity. (The other major set of heat engines providing substantial power – Nuclear and Hyrdo – were built using heat engines burning fossil fuels.)

    -Reference is often made that a 42-gallon barrel of oil contains 5.8 million Btu, or British thermal units. However, from what I can tell, only 80-85% of that oil can be turned into refined fuels to be burned in internal combustion engines that create mechanical motion.

    -When burned in internal combustion engines, only 25% to 45% of the energy content of the liquid fuel is converted to mechanical power. Average Thermal efficiency is about 27% for gas and 35% for diesel. The rest of the energy is dissipated as escaped heat, or friction on mechanical parts and road surfaces.

    -Assuming 85% of a barrel of oil is refined into burnable fuels, and ~2/3 of the refined fuels energy is lost to waste heat and friction in the ICE burning process: using just an excel spreadsheet, plotting in the above, and the EROI diminishing from 99 to 10, you can see that the net energy available to perform mechanical motion and economic work outside the oil production sector rapidly diminishes. At a point of use EROI of 10, 569,800 Btus of energy are expended to extract, refine, and deliver 4,102,560 BTUs in the refined fuels. However, 2,735,040 BTUs are lost as heat/friction, leaving only 1,367,520 Btus of energy that can be converted into mechanical motion by an ICE.

    -In my extremely, widely simplistic analysis, at a point of use EROI of around 5, the cost of oil energy extraction and delivery exceeds the energy available in the refined fuels to produce economic work. I am not trying to provide anything like a real EROI analysis, I am just trying to show conceptually that we are far more levered to EROI decline than may be assumed.

    In terms of economic leverage, it is Diesel/Fuel Oil powers almost all extraction and transport equipment used in mining of natural resources including agriculture. It is therefore key to the high resource extraction rates or flow from natural resource stocks. This is true for the extraction rate of oil itself, as well as the other energy resource stocks of coal, gas, and uranium. So my understanding is that Diesel engines, and Diesel fuel – which is only about one quarter of the refinery output from a barrel of oil – is the source for the most important portion of the mechanical leverage and motion that facilitate our current global industrial civilization.


    1. Thanks for an interesting refinement on how we should think about EROI.

      You would be most welcome to write a guest post elaborating on these ideas if you’d like.

      Alice Friedemann wrote a book about the importance of diesel. I think we could make do without gasoline by walking and biking, but not diesel because it powers everything we need to survive: tractors, combines, trucks, mining machines, trains, and ships.


      1. As long as there is diesel, there’ll be gasoline. I remember Dmitry Orlov saying gasoline is basically a waste product, and is about 1/2 of what comes out once the crude oil is refined.


  17. This blog post was interesting regarding EROEI.


    It could be that we’re in capitalism’s simulacrum stage in which we are currently running a cheap imitation of a capitalistic, investment system by printing paper returns on investment. The EROI is still ample to create a ROI in places like China and a net increase in world GDP but the screw is being turned and a voluntary leap into renewables might be equivalent to turning the screw several times rapidly or falling down the energy cliff voluntarily to hopefully be supported somewhere between Hall’s renewables EROEI of approx. 2.5 and Bardi’s renewables EROEI of approx. 11. It may provide us (some of us) just enough energy to stay alive on our legacy infrastructure for a while. My guess is that we’ll never generate enough net energy to rebuild or maintain most of the current infrastructure. If we try to make up for a shortfall in quality of energy with an increase in quantity of energy, we’ll probably finish-off the ecosystem. Becoming agrarian again will be challenging because of losses of economies-of-scale and the general deterioration in the productivity of soils without the amendments provided by high EROEI fossil fuel system.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks. Good link and interesting insights.

      I agree with your simulacrum idea. Almost none of the high flying companies today make a profit. Everything has the appearance of growth because we’re conjuring huge quantities of debt at a near zero interest rate.

      We used to generate more than $1 of growth for every $1 of debt. Now it takes more than $3 of debt to generate $1 of growth, and the ratio is growing.

      I don’t trust any of the EROI numbers on renewables. I don’t think they include battery storage and backup natural gas turbines and the grid build-out required for 24/7 operation, nor losses in conversion to liquids for powering tractors/combines/trucks/trains/ships, nor rising manufacturing/maintenance costs as fossil energy depletes.

      Renewables are simply adding to our fossil energy bonfire. We’re not using them to replace fossil energy. But they make us feel good and help to mask the fact that we’re denying reality.


    1. That would make a great t-shirt graphic, “BLIP” with that red spike. It could be the antithesis of the smiley face. Or maybe “BLIP” with a smiley skull. But not a commercial success because of denial.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Your blip comment made me think of a line from “Bridget Jones’s Diary.”

        What do you think about the El Nino phenomenon?

        It’s a blip. Latin music’s on its way out.


  18. Here is a rebuttal to Bossche’s claims. I did not appreciate that ZDoggMD spent more time attacking Bossche’s character and making fun of his accent than he did discussing Bossche’s claims, of which he only addressed 2 of the 4 key points made by Bossche, and provided just as little hard data as Bossche did.

    I don’t know who’s right. I’m going watch the Israel data over the coming weeks to decide.


  19. Charles Hugh Smith was good today…


    In short, while America’s GDP (gross domestic product) has gone up 6.5-fold since the start of the financialization-globalization boom in 1981, the stock of money has risen 12-fold.

    This is striking: money stock basically doubled from 2009 (the brief Global Financial Crisis recession) to last February, before the pandemic had any impact on the economy. In other words, setting aside the extraordinary vertical expansion of money stock in the past year, the U.S. economy’s stock of money doubled in a bit over a decade, just to keep GDP (“growth”) at an anemic, barely-above-flatline rate of expansion.

    Put another way, there wasn’t much bang for doubling the supply of bucks.

    Meanwhile, the velocity of money has absolutely tanked. In the era of widespread prosperity in the 1960s and 1970s, the velocity of money ratio remained in a band between 1.7 and 1.8, moving up toward 2 in the inflationary late 70s as it made sense to trade cash that was losing value for goods and services before it lost even more purchasing power.

    Velocity returned to this range in the 1980s boom, and then rocketed to postwar highs at 2.2 in the Internet boom of the 1990s. Since that top in 1997, money velocity has been in a secular decline. As every Fed-inflated financial bubble pops, money velocity takes another leg down. Even before the pandemic, it was in a steady free-fall even as the supply of money steadily rocketed higher.
    Not to put too fine a point on it, but this aligns with the secular stagnation of earnings/wages which began in earnest at the same time (1981), and the rising dependence on central bank intervention / stimulus which has reached the extreme absurdity where the U.S. stock and bond markets and its entire financial system now teeter on the edge of collapse if there is even a slight hint that 1) the Fed won’t give more free candy to Wall Street or 2) the Fed has lost control of the Dead Money Economy it has created.


  20. FYI — Among other posts, Bossche has posted at the top of his website, https://www.geertvandenbossche.org/ a 12-page document titled: “Immediate cancellation of all ongoing Covid-19 mass vaccination campaigns should now become THE most acute health emergency of international concern.” He writes: “The following document is a key update of my executive summary and addresses important questions, comments and replies that have been raised on my emergency appeal of global concern. I repeat with utmost urgency my call for a public scientific debate with the WHO, qualified experts and authorities worldwide.”

    Without prejudice, I confess I’m confused about one thing: In his documents or videos, when Bossche refers to a “call” or “appeal” is he using the term in a general or specific sense? Sometimes he refers to a “call” to WHO and the scientific community. But I have never seen any “letter” from him that includes a letterhead addressed to a WHO official and/or department. Yesterday I searched “Bossche” on the WHO website and came up empty.

    As well, what to make of the SILENCE from online, TV, and print news and information sources. I’ve contacted the CBC, The Tyee, and other sources about the Bossche call for debate, but so far not even an acknowledgment. But it;s only been a few days.

    Finally, As well — It seems to me that Bossche could have strengthened his appeal considerably had he enlisted the support of other scientists who shared his legitimate concerns about the COVID-19 mass vaccinations.


    1. Thanks.

      I find everything in the virus space very confusing and difficult to establish the truth.

      Everyone seems to have an agenda and the topic is a magnet for crazy people.

      In case you missed it, I think this guy did a better job of expressing Bossche’s concerns (see above for my summary).


      1. Thanks for the tip, Rob. The 2021 interview with Dr Bryan Bridle of U Guelph is also available on YouTube.

        Covid-19 Symposium 2021: Dr Byram Bridle, Viral Immunologist, University of Guelph


  21. Here is what might be some confirmation of DR BYRAM BRIDLE concerns , from the worlds most vaccinated country –


    Highly infectious foreign variants are currently flooding Israeli hospitals with serious cases and the newly developed vaccines have yet to be proven fully effective against them”, Deputy Health Minister Yoav Kisch said.


  22. I dunno. Geert is one of the dumbest first names ever & combined with that goofy fucking haircut that’s evidence enough for me – I don’t trust him.


      1. ?you lost me there.

        Anyone worried about Covid & the near future would be better served learning Mandarin & moving to China.

        Bill mentions Boston’s fiasco ‘Big Dig’. We have one in BC.

        A Monstrous Monument to Greed and Stupidity’: Critics React to Site C Decision

        BC Liberals accuse NDP of mismanagement; Greens warn public to brace for higher costs.

        “Horgan announced the government will continue with the project even though the budget has grown to $16 billion, an increase he blamed largely on unexpected geotechnical issues and delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is now expected to be in service in 2025.

        The Site C budget was $7.9 billion in 2010. When the NDP decided to continue construction in 2017 they increased the budget to $10.7 billion.

        Shypitka said the cost of the dam has doubled since the NDP came to government and that the oversight committee it put in place in 2018 has clearly failed. “Under their watch, this project has gone off the rails. That’s on the NDP government.”


        Blame blame blame….it don’t matter. The West is done.


        1. Andrew Nikiforuk has also written some good pieces on Site C.


          I’m torn. On the one hand we should not be destroying another river valley to build something we probably won’t be able to maintain in 30 years, or less.

          On the other hand, when oil is scarce, those regions with reliable hydro electricity may be the last pockets of wealth and modernity. Thing is, the idiots in charge are not building it because they’re worried about oil depletion so they don’t get any credits.

          What do you think of the project?


          1. Rob, I haven’t investigated it too deeply. Maybe 8-10 articles, mostly from the Tyee. Apparently that river valley was 1st class agricultural land with the potential to feed up to 1 million people annually.

            Unless all countries equally & honestly cut their emissions/growth, it would be to our disadvantage to go it alone, so build the damn dam, continue to frack, mine & grow mega wheat & canola for export.

            Unless all countries equally & honestly cut their emissions/growth, we must continue to play last man standing. It’s s trap bro.

            Hydro dams have minimum water requirements to operate, so barring total collapse, how long dams can generate electricity depends of their water sources.

            Climate Change and BC’s Glaciers

            “Around the world, glaciers are melting, but what about glaciers in western Canada? A comprehensive study of the current state and future fate of glaciers in BC and Alberta is currently underway, and the early results are disturbing.”

            “Their results bear directly on how we manage our water resources, access fresh water, and even produce electricity in the near future.

            The research is being funded by an investment of nearly $2.2 million from the Canadian Foundation for Climate and Atmospheric Sciences and cash contributions from universities and network partners such as BC Hydro and the Columbia Basin Trust.”

            Glacier Facts (2005)

            -BC has about 17,000 glaciers and Alberta has around 800.

            -Glaciers cover 3% of BC’s land mass.

            -Between 1985 and 1999, the annual amount of water lost from melting glaciers in BC was 22 cubic kilometres.

            -Close to 90% of BC’s energy is hydroelectric, and melting snow and ice play a significant role.

            -The largest glacier entirely in BC is the Klinaklini Glacier, with an area of 470 square kilometres.


            80% of mountain glaciers in Alberta, B.C. and Yukon will disappear within 50 years: report ………………..Dec 27, 2018

            “Climate change is causing glaciers in Alberta, British Columbia and Yukon to retreat faster than at any time in history, threatening to raise water levels and create deserts, scientists say.”


            Tracking BC’s vanishing glaciers………….December 4, 2019


            B.C. glaciers 38 per cent thicker than expected, surprising study finds

            Some glaciers might last a few years or even a decade longer, but that still won’t save them from climate change………………Nov 27, 2020



            1. Good point. I was thinking about how there probably won’t be enough wealth and diesel to maintain large complex systems like dams and grids, and didn’t think about the loss of glaciers feeding them. It’s very hard to keep a integrated view with so many problems bearing down at the same time.

              We’ll definitely regret destroying farm land.

              I remember as a kid going to Lulu island on weekends to buy produce and blueberries. Best farm land in BC. We call it the city of Richmond now and it’s totally paved over with homes and shopping malls.


    1. From March 21 Jerusalem Post report —
      “Coronavirus in Israel: I don’t expect another wave says corona czar” — https://www.jpost.com/breaking-news/coronavirus-in-israel-285-new-cases-17-percent-of-tests-return-positive-662662
      • 37 new cases of the novel coronavirus were identified on Saturday, with only 1.8% of tests returning positive, the Health Ministry reported.
      • The R rate, or reproduction rate, also continued to decrease, standing at 0.62. The figure reflects how many people each coronavirus carrier infects on average. When the number is lower than 0.8 the disease is considered to be receding
      • only four people succumbed to the virus on Saturday, the lowest daily toll in months. Some 6,085 have succumbed to the virus since the beginning of the pandemic.
      • Of those currently infected, 548 were in serious condition and 211 were on ventilators.
      • over 4.5 million Israelis have been fully vaccinated with both doses of the coronavirus vaccination, while 5.1 million people have been inoculated with at least the first dose of the vaccination.
      • only two scenarios could allow a new wave to sweep through the country: 1) an outbreak among children and adults who are not vaccinated, which could be caused by a general relaxation on the observance of the rules, and 2) the development of a variant resistant to the vaccine. “We currently do not know of such a mutation, and we are taking all measures to reduce the entry of mutations into Israel,”
      • “[The decrease in numbers] has allowed us to enter a fourth stage of openings, mainly by increasing the number of attendees at cultural and sports events, opening outdoor attractions like swimming pools, changes in the education system to expand in-person learning,”
      • Re variants, a March 12 Post report stated — “There is a low but real risk that some variant may make the vaccine substantially less effective, and then we may need a booster that is adjusted to the new variant,” (Not sure if this means there are NO variants in Israel)


  23. Peter McCullough, MD testifies to Texas Senate HHS Committee

    This is a must watch video!! I encourage you to watch at least three minutes of it. He says among other things:

     He has been stunned that no treatments for COVID have been promoted.
     4:04 There has been a near total block on any information on treatment to patients, so patients think COVID-19 is untreatable
     If your test is positive, they are told: go home, no treatment.
     “No wonder there have been so many deaths…”
     At 5:50 he lists off the various drugs that can be used. 50% reduction in mortality in a double blind placebo controlled study – yet no word of it.
     6:38 “What has gone on is beyond belief. How many of you have turned on a local news station or a national cable news station and ever gotten an update on treatment at home?…That is a complete and total failure at every level.”
     7:33 “We have a complete and total blank spot on treatment…This is a complete and total travesty to have a fatal disease and not treat it.”
     NIH and Infectious Disease Society of America started putting out guidelines on treatment, but it is exclusively focused on people who are hospitalized.
     We never see how the rest of the world is treating it. Little if any coverage on news.
     There is only one doctor who is on TV. Not a panel. Doctors always work in groups and have various opinions. There is not a single media doctor on TV who has ever treated a COVID patient.
     11:01 “What happened? Around May it became known that the virus would be amenable to a vaccine. All efforts on treatment were dropped. The NIH actually had a multi-drug program and they dropped it after twenty patients. Said they couldn’t find patients. The most disingenuous announcement of all time. And then Warp Speed went full tilt toward vaccine development and there was a silencing on any information on treatment. Any. Silencing. Scrubbed from youtube, twitter, you can’t get papers published on this.”
     People who had COVID have immunity.
     No rationale for giving vaccine to anyone who had COVID.
     In the vaccine trials, fewer than 1% actually got COVID. The vaccine will have a 1% public health impact. That’s what the data says. It’s not going to save us.
     “If we are strategically targeted, we can close out the pandemic very well with the vaccine. People under 50 who fundamentally have no health risks, there is no scientific rationale for them ever to become vaccinated.”
     13:36 “My opinion is there is a low degree if any of asymptomatic spread.” The Chinese couldn’t find asymptomatic spread. Sick people give it to sick people.
     COVID 19 has always been a treatable illness. Two studies (he gives their names) show that when doctors treat patients over age 50 with medical problems with a sequenced multi-drug approach. There is an 85% reduction in hospitalization. [Like Trump himself!]
     We have 500,000 deaths in the US. Could have been as high as 85% left if we had focused treatment.
     We must use multi-drug approach.
     Herd immunity – infection rates started to go down long before the vaccine.
     18:15 he mentions invermectin and HCQ, etc.
     A lot of doctors have checked out and say “I don’t treat COVID.”

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Some of Geert’s supportive references from the literature links

    Imperfect Vaccination Can Enhance the Transmission of Highly Virulent Pathogens

    “Our data show that anti-disease vaccines that do not prevent transmission can create conditions that promote the emergence of pathogen strains that cause more severe disease in unvaccinated hosts.”

    Do covid vaccines prevent transmission? Seems this is the real question.


  25. This just in…

    “South African variant may evade protection from Pfizer vaccine, Israeli study says…”

    Rob, I know you’re monitoring the cases in Israel and I am following the progress with great interest. Personally, I am holding off on the vaccine until we are at least 18 months into these current human trials.

    It looks studies in Israel (cited above) are showing that that the South African variant may evade protection from the Pfizer vaccine. Given that South Africa was the location for the Phase III trials of the Pfizer vaccine in October, this (IMHO) is significant. This might be the beginning of what Dr. Vanden Bossche was trying to describe.



  26. I’m having to delete many comments from people who do not like these updates.

    My agenda is as follows:

    1) Bossche is an expert on vaccines.
    2) He made an intelligent science based argument for why our current policies may be wrong.
    3) He made a specific prediction that those counties with a high vaccination rate would see a rapid decline in cases, followed in a few weeks to a few months by a rapid increase in cases.
    4) I am monitoring Israel because (I think) it has the highest vaccination rate.
    5) So far there is no data to support Bossche’s prediction.
    6) I will continue to monitor and report for another month or so.

    If anyone sees a new hypothesis with new predications by Bossche, please post them.


  27. I think this is great science. Consider include Seychelles in your analysis. Seychelles is an island of 99,000 people with high vaccination rates but increasing covid cases. This is an excellent place to study what is going on.


    1. “Home to numerous world-famous beaches, coral reefs and nature reserves, Seychelles, a small island destination in the Indian Ocean, announced an increase in tourism arrivals to the island in 2019.

      The Seychelles Tourism Board announced that the island achieved a 6 percent increase in tourist arrivals thanks to worldwide promotion by participating in international events as well as hosting international sporting events. According to Seychelles’ National Bureau of Statistics data, total number of visitor arrivals for 2019 increased to 384,204, from 351,235 in 2018.”



  28. Rob,
    You might want to also monitor Chile. They have a very impressive record for vaccines per capita as well.


  29. There is something else going on not related to vaccine. Mexico is getting much better and has very little of its population vaccinated. Mexico cases per day is down 85% from their peak in January.


  30. Bossche has a recently updated FAQ on his site which says we should not have to wait too many more weeks before his prediction comes true.

    h/t Michael L’Merchant


    Q: How can it be explained that in Israel it seems that the massive vaccination has almost stopped the pandemic and no dramatic effects are being observed over people that have been vaccinated?

    A: It’s just a matter of weeks for a surge in Israel to occur due to resistance of the virus to vaccinal antibodies in vaccinees. I expect this surge to occur before summer.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s