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Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations

 
Anonymous Coward
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11/25/2012 02:20 AM
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Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations

I wanted to start a new topic, and I'd like it to be a serious discussion based on critical thinking, not opinion. I'm interested in supply chain disruptions and the long term effects of a decrease in population as a result of that disruption.

Disclosure: I am a prepper. I've been writing daily numerous posts in Last Minute Tips for Parents When the SHTF. That said, I'm interested to hear from preppers and non-preppers and have zero axe to grind. I'm actually hoping that I have flawed thinking and am not looking at some aspect in enough detail. You're doing me a service to challenge my assertions. Think of it like challenging a dissertation.

Having looked at this issue for many decades and being an educated person, I've looked at many key areas and also historical events. Of course any scenario can depict such a high level of chaos that severe population reduction would occur, and so I wanted to pick what I believe to be a plausible scenario.

Scenario: an economic collapse of the USA due to loss of confidence in the dollar results in severe supply chain issues, extreme unemployment, a sharp reduction in government spending, and a recall of our military stateside to assist in restoring order. While many factories can retool to create supplies, that will take time. We have many natural resources, but they'd have to be extracted in operations that are either not under operation or not currently built. The collapse has just begun. What will be the population impact over the course of one year?

Assume that the most effort from the government will be to prioritize the highest populations, with the Northeast being the largest urban areas and less effected by drought than the Great Plains. The Northeast has a short growing season and is not suited for large scale agriculture. The Great Plains however supply our wheat, grains, and much livestock. Arid regions in the West will very hard hit as their soils may not support agriculture (crops and livestock) to any large degree. Today much of existing water is piped from one part of the country to another based upon a lack of rainfall in that region and too much demand on their aquifers from their population versus local populations with less demand.

Each of those areas will require the deployment of large amounts of soldiers and technicians, and they will need supplies (water, food, medicines, other) as well creating a new supply chain issue just for the additional personnel.

Water supply
There is a current drought of historic proportions across much to the USA. Water is needed for agriculture, livestock, human water consumption, cleaning, as well as for industrial manufacturing processes of many different kinds. A human being can go three days without water as long as they are not doing a great deal of activity and based upon the temperature and humidity.

The status of water is getting grim with lower amounts of seasonal rainfall due to Wintertime, plus the historic drought, reductions in aquifers (in some cases severe like the Ogallala), and stream water reductions(including lakes and rivers from rainfall and snowmelt).

Impact: If we had supply chain issues for water purification, or the means of using utilities to power up the operation, then the water supply could be initially compromised and may result in no operation. This is the most likely scenario for severe conflict as water is so vital to life.

While boiling at the individual homes will remove pathogens, this isn't an option for businesses. Nor do business have the technical or human resource capability to gather water. We could expect to see a vast increase in improper sanitation as a result of hurried preparation, inconsistency of technique, and noncompliance.

Boiling doesn't remove chemicals in the water that are filtered. We'll expose people to these and boiling only concentrates them. As the water get progressively worse, bacterial counts may be excessive, and longer and longer boiling may be needed.

While some people have common bleach in their homes, many will not, or will have scented versions. Bleach would be a high demand item which will create a shortage. Pool shock is better and long lasting, but in much short supply due to typically very low demand. The latter will run out fast. Priority will likely be given to gear up the creation of both products.

Boiling means using an alternative heating source, and wood may not be available. Seasoned wood takes time to dry. While some areas have forests, they are sparse in many urban areas, nonexistent in much of the Great Plains. There is a death of them in some other regions, and transporting wood is expensive.

[Coal operations will be a priority to power utilities to run boiler operations. Coal is largely transported on river barges, and many are at historic lows which result in lower payloads on those barges that can navigate. Some rivers may become impossible to navigate, which would result in higher demand for railroad transport or trucking, both of which have their own supply needs.]

As the water utilities fail, rainfall can be collected, but only seasonally. Low humidity times will decrease yields due to evaporation. Most people have no equipment to collect it. Some will improperly collect it due to lack of technical ability. Some will accidentally contaminate it.

Wells can be dug, however most will probably dig shallow point wells which can be contaminated by garbage and fecal matter in the absence of garbage collection and disruption of the sewers. Deeper wells are safer, but regardless equipment is necessary for both and instruction to make them, plus maintenance, and sanitary practices. Biosand filtration will result in a 97% reduction in pathogens from garbage and fecal matter, but still that's a high level of new pathogens (and cumulatively being added in the civilian population), and only if wells are constructed. These will take time, and based upon the weather, so we can't expect this as a short term solution.

Some water collection from reservoirs (lakes and streams) will result in very high chemical content, poisons from pesticides or chemical fertilizers, and very high pathogen levels. Accessibility is a major issue since this requires altering existing easements to allow people access. We can expect major conflict at these locations based on fear, theft, and trespassing. We can expect severe health issues from this practice.

As people die from disruptions and violence, burials will occur in local communities and we can expect some pollution from this into groundwater sources. Agricultural efforts in those same communities will add to initially more chemical runoff, and fecal matter.

Question: How many people do you think will die from dehydration or pathogen effects in one week's time? Using totals which include the previous result, how many will die in a month's time? In a year?
Food supply

Many food spoil in the absence of refrigeration (frozen meats being the primary concern for loss of proteins, but also fruits and vegetables; milk products are refrigerated and hence impossible to source; other meats, produce, etc are refrigerated.).

Most grains are dried and long lasting. Canned food won't spoil. Some other food products are dehydrated, but are uncommon.

The average American home has 3-7 days of food in it, not including frozen, but with a utility loss, that will be lost in a few days and probably wasted.

Non-obese people can live three weeks without food, but only if sedentary. That's highly unlikely in a collapse. Obese people can live up to three months without food if sedentary. Estimates of the obese population in America by the classical definition (over 30) has been estimated as high as 75% in some states.

We have some stockpiled food, but most likely this will be enough for military operations and critical infrastructure personnel.

There are not many rural folks (16%) and many no longer raise crops or livestock. We can gear up, but that takes time and is weather-based. We'll have to train a lot of people. Many foods are imported.

High activity for work to source firewood and water and gathered food will require a commensurate increase in caloric intake.

We can expect a large number of vitamin and mineral deficiencies as we saw in the beginning of the 20th Century and a vast increase in medical care for them. Priority should be given to vitamin production but many are made in foreign countries. This will take time to retool factories, hire workers, gather supplies,etc.

Few wild plants and their fruits and nuts can be gathered from the meadows and trees without damage to the areas in which they are harvested. Produce may be taken when under or over mature, and will impact local ecology by subtracting from insect, animal food supply, and then reduce humus levels in the soil. These plants are seasonally harvested. It's now Winter, and we can expect to not harvest until late June for most of the plants, and often the Autumn to produce the highest amounts. Many would be dead by that time.

Agriculture is contingent upon water, fertile soil, tools to break sod (for the land is not tilled), training, seeds, etc. Soils can be slowly raised in fertility, but these require even more specialized techniques and soil amenities like fertilizers, pest controls, pH modifiers, sand to create spacing between clay soils, etc.

Since food will take seasons for planting and harvesting, most of that will be too late for the majority of most Americans even with working under starvation conditions. Some produce will be harvested in June, with progressively higher amounts in July and August and September, but only in fertile areas. Since this is so multifactorial in scope, it's probably unrealistic for this to save people until those harvest times.

Wild game has been severely affected in many drought areas as have fish populations. Those are only hunted or fished in their season. These require special equipment, chemicals, ammunition, training. If taken out of season we can expect extinction. If taken in their season, we can also expect extinction.

Trapping produces the most meat or fish, with less supplies and caloric energy, but it's beyond the capability of most people. While we have many firearms and some fishing poles, many are not skilled enough to rely upon subsistence hunting, trapping, and fishing in any reliable way.

Additionally we can expect high levels of injury, accidental wounds, and deaths from these activities.

Question: How many people do you think will die from starvation effects in one month's time? Using totals which include the previous result, how many will die in a in a year?

Next up medicines.
O_o
User ID: 26387242
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11/25/2012 03:37 AM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
I often wonder about this type of scenario, how fast cities will break down when there's no more food being trucked in.

Very interesting reading, hope to read more!

O_o
Shoot Him
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11/25/2012 03:47 AM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
If we weren't invaded this crap wouldn't be happening.

Novel concept!

DEPORTATION.

Oh what is that?

Stick them on a boat and dump them at sea. Don't bury them here.

Find them and deport them.

Why? You sneak into the country to do what?

To put a noose around my neck?

Russia I don't think so. You have played your last Russian Knaub game. Mark Knaub, M.D. Camp Hill/Hershey Med.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 28428659
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11/25/2012 03:48 AM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
The entire East coast is doomed in a full stop of supply.

With the concentrated traffic and car accidents many people will be heading west on foot.

It would take 6 months before the people got together in rag tag communes.

The first couple of months would be the height of chaos, rape, murder.

Let's not forget the cruel winters and sudden drought.

*************
In a rolling backout of supply scenario. Those closest to city centers would be dead first and those on the out skirts would have a much better time.

Trucks would be ambushed for supply's. Rail yards would become the new airport with supply's coming in body's going out.

Military and police forces will patrol and escort supply routes with police dogs patrolling gated community's.

Many farmers will loose their land by force and the land will be compounded into a single large farm land run by corporation's.

*************
Hunger is a weapon.

The secondary weapons are germs.

Without supply's metropolitan areas will become breeding grounds for lethal biological agents.

The perfect cover to release a virus.
Anonymous Coward
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11/25/2012 03:50 AM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
As for heat I doubt you can burn wood or furniture to pieces of a house.

Fire bands will be in effect. Those who start fires to survive will could be promptly arrested.
Russians Tasty
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11/25/2012 03:51 AM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
The entire East coast is doomed in a full stop of supply.

With the concentrated traffic and car accidents many people will be heading west on foot.

It would take 6 months before the people got together in rag tag communes.

The first couple of months would be the height of chaos, rape, murder.

Let's not forget the cruel winters and sudden drought.

*************
In a rolling backout of supply scenario. Those closest to city centers would be dead first and those on the out skirts would have a much better time.

Trucks would be ambushed for supply's. Rail yards would become the new airport with supply's coming in body's going out.

Military and police forces will patrol and escort supply routes with police dogs patrolling gated community's.

Many farmers will loose their land by force and the land will be compounded into a single large farm land run by corporation's.

*************
Hunger is a weapon.

The secondary weapons are germs.

Without supply's metropolitan areas will become breeding grounds for lethal biological agents.

The perfect cover to release a virus.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 28428659


We can always eat useless Canadians.
Anonymous Coward
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11/25/2012 05:05 AM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
Your senario is too kind.
How about a massive solar flare killing every green thing and turning the oceans to fish emulsion.
With temperatures upwards of 120 everywhere.
You know like that movie "the road"

So what can we eat besides other humans...... our hair, drywall, furniture, dead trees, rock soup, body fluids...... if ya know what I mean.....
Anonymous Coward
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Australia
11/25/2012 05:52 AM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
I will give one piece of advice that is extremely important.

People will laugh but don't underestimate hos bad this addiction is.

Have enough coffee/caffeine to kick the habit if you drink cofee/coke/sports drinks/chocoloate.


I went cold turkey to stop , and the withdrawal symptoms will lay you out for over a week.

As bad as the flu, headaches sore throat, unable to sleep, muscle aches, so tired and lethargic you cannot move, depression, anxiety the list goes on. People have gone to ER due to caffeine withdrawals, and I can count the number of adults I know on one had who have no caffeine in their diet.

When I stopped caffeine, and I only consumed a pretty small amount of caffeine it was pure hell.
The first couple of days your fine, then the headache hits, the headache doesn't last long and is not too bad but after 3 or 4 days the real withdrawal symptoms hit.

Like having a real bad dose of the flu. You can tell its the caffeine as if you want to make all the pain/tiredness/lethargy/sickness go away all you need to do is have a tiny amount of caffeine, like a single sip of coffee/energy drink and within 5 minutes everything is gone and you feel back to normal.

The muscle pains where so bad that my entire shoulder seized up and I couldn't move my arm above shoulder height.
This lasted for over a week.The pain was worse than when I came out of a coma with crushed legs in a motor cycle accident. Its very frighting.
Every step was an agonizing effort.


I have known people who try to quit cold turkey and cannot.
I have seen it almost break up marriages and when the person who tried to quit starts back up caffeine there marriage is perfect again.


don't go cold turkey, reduce the the dosage and ween yourself off.

Please make sure you have enough caffeine for you and others around you to safely come off it.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 28410867
Australia
11/25/2012 06:14 AM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
"I wanted to start a new topic, and I'd like it to be a serious discussion based on critical thinking, not opinion. I'm interested in supply chain disruptions and the long term effects of a decrease in population as a result of that disruption."


Based on my studies on famines/disasters around the world recent and through history this would not be enough to cause any significant decrease in population.

It would be hard going and a lot of poverty, but not a great effect on the population.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 28410867
Australia
11/25/2012 06:23 AM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
Nothing apart from a massive war on the scale never seen on American soil, a massive regional or an even bigger global disaster bigger than anything in recorded history that kills millions and devastates a truly huge area or a pandemic on an astounding scale will cause any significant reduction in population in America.

All other economic/drought scenarios although they can have a massive effect on society will not cause a significant reduction in population in America.
Anonymous Coward
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United Kingdom
11/25/2012 06:26 AM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
simply learn to ditch taste prejudices, and you'll do fine.

i would cook slugs if I was you though. saw a big fat one chewing on a dog turd the other day!

damned
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 27352798
United States
11/25/2012 04:07 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
I will give one piece of advice that is extremely important.

People will laugh but don't underestimate hos bad this addiction is.

Have enough coffee/caffeine to kick the habit if you drink cofee/coke/sports drinks/chocoloate.


I went cold turkey to stop , and the withdrawal symptoms will lay you out for over a week.

As bad as the flu, headaches sore throat, unable to sleep, muscle aches, so tired and lethargic you cannot move, depression, anxiety the list goes on. People have gone to ER due to caffeine withdrawals, and I can count the number of adults I know on one had who have no caffeine in their diet.

When I stopped caffeine, and I only consumed a pretty small amount of caffeine it was pure hell.
The first couple of days your fine, then the headache hits, the headache doesn't last long and is not too bad but after 3 or 4 days the real withdrawal symptoms hit.

Like having a real bad dose of the flu. You can tell its the caffeine as if you want to make all the pain/tiredness/lethargy/sickness go away all you need to do is have a tiny amount of caffeine, like a single sip of coffee/energy drink and within 5 minutes everything is gone and you feel back to normal.

The muscle pains where so bad that my entire shoulder seized up and I couldn't move my arm above shoulder height.
This lasted for over a week.The pain was worse than when I came out of a coma with crushed legs in a motor cycle accident. Its very frighting.
Every step was an agonizing effort.


I have known people who try to quit cold turkey and cannot.
I have seen it almost break up marriages and when the person who tried to quit starts back up caffeine there marriage is perfect again.


don't go cold turkey, reduce the the dosage and ween yourself off.

Please make sure you have enough caffeine for you and others around you to safely come off it.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 28410867



You have made a very important observation. I've thought about it in the past, too, having had the occasional "absence of caffeine headache". Here are my thoughts on the caffeine subject:

* I have stockpiled tea with my preps. A hundred bags of Lipton costs around three dollars, lasts a long time. Tea has less caffeine than coffee but it also contains a relaxing substance tannin which counteracts the jittery effect of straight caffeine.

* For the real coffee afficianados with deep pockets, you can buy bulk green coffee beans and learn how to roast them in small batches yourself. They last a long time in the green state, especially if you vacuum pack them with nitrogen.

* For your bug out bag, a small bottle of No-Doz, has 100 mg. caffeine in pill form, about the same as a cup of coffee. It also has vitamins B1 and B3 to metabolize energy.

* In a desperate situation, eating a single coffee bean (chewed well) will have you up doing jumping jacks all night.


**************************

On another and more frightening note, what about all the MILLIONS of people in this country who are regular users of anit-depressants? Remember the Prozac defense, when people went nuts from stopping their meds? They would kill someone during a psychotic episode caused by abrupt withdrawal of their anti-depressant. Yikes....
Anonymous Coward
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11/25/2012 04:54 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
At first it would be civil till three days in and store shelves empty. No gas for cars, no electricity, no heat.

The civility will become uncivil as people go off and lite fires to stay warm, smash windows for big screen tv and food, break into homes and kill residents as they plunder.

It would look like black friday at walmart with crowds going ape shit and ripping everything apart scavenging and clawing at one another till shots ring out and someones killed.

Then it starts again somewhere else, same way.
Anonymous Coward
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11/25/2012 05:28 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
sorry did not real it, but great topic OP. Been looking at it since they started consolidating production in order to sell and burn fuel. Things would be half priced if produced locally.

Anonymous Coward
User ID: 27352798
United States
11/25/2012 06:04 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
This link is to a webpage describing steps to take in a nuclear emergency. However, much of the information can be broadly applied in ANY disaster. It gives immediate and urgent instructions for shelter-in-place and bug-out scenarios. Good stuff, important reading for every one who intends to survive:

[link to www.ki4u.com]
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 1110734
United States
11/25/2012 06:47 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
Whoa whoa whoa folks. Try to stay on-topic. Read the scenario and try to imagine the death rates from dehydration and starvation.

There's clear parameters, so let's do a discussion on that, and not turn it into a prepping topic, for we have lots of those threads.

I'm hoping we can do a critical analysis and make reasonable challenges to assertions and consider facts, not opinion based upon human metabolic needs.

Otherwise, it'll become a free-for-all.

I'm waiting on others ideas before providing my own estimates.

Why is this important? Most people think in terms of hordes of refugees and bugging out folks. It's my belief that most would die from lack of skills, physical and mental health limitations, seasonal challenges, low blood sugar, lack of staminia.

While we think we're strong, we also know we've been very domesticated and most people are docile. Sure there's a large number of former criminals, drug addicts, and sociopaths, but I believe that many would die in migrations, just as many died in history in migrations.

The ones who stayed probably couldn't source things like enough fuel to boil water, stay warm, cook, etc. Same thing with food from Nov-June based upon local species populations, adequate protein, carbs, fats, vitamins, and minerals.

Think in these terms.
SilverPatriot

User ID: 10518597
United States
11/25/2012 07:08 PM

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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
As for heat I doubt you can burn wood or furniture to pieces of a house.

Fire bands will be in effect. Those who start fires to survive will could be promptly arrested.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 28428659


In a scenario with a breakdown in food, supply chains the only ones looking for signs of wood burning would be the hungry and you will see the loyalty of law enforcement quickly break down if they too become hungry.

With all the chaos, occurring around them a small would not garner their attention s those in urban areas will be burning down and looting everything. Further once supply and food stores have been looted how many of these unprepared clueless population know how to procure and make water safe to drink.

The point would be to have enough supplies to hunker down and survive through the raging moron stage thus allowing them to cull their own ranks.
Anonymous Coward
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11/25/2012 07:14 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
most sheepies won't last more than a week without water, the rest will be too stupid to make the water safe. 99 % die off in a month , with any luck STHTF in the dead of winter and voila sheepsicles everywhere )
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 1110734
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11/25/2012 07:30 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
As for heat I doubt you can burn wood or furniture to pieces of a house.

Fire bands will be in effect. Those who start fires to survive will could be promptly arrested.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 28428659


In a scenario with a breakdown in food, supply chains the only ones looking for signs of wood burning would be the hungry and you will see the loyalty of law enforcement quickly break down if they too become hungry.

With all the chaos, occurring around them a small would not garner their attention s those in urban areas will be burning down and looting everything. Further once supply and food stores have been looted how many of these unprepared clueless population know how to procure and make water safe to drink.

The point would be to have enough supplies to hunker down and survive through the raging moron stage thus allowing them to cull their own ranks.
 Quoting: SilverPatriot


Good comment...so say there's enough liquids in an average persons's home to sustain them for ____ number of days + some will loot from stores so they could last _____number of days. Others would attempt to collect from local streams and last for ___number of days but eventually die from dyssentary. Minimal well digging will occur as it's community activity and difficult to do in Winter. It will happen. Little rainfall in Winter, but some snowmelt in limited areas at higher elevations and probably lower population density most places, but places like Denver might get a lot. Then take an average to see survivability over a month's duration for dehydration.

Some government officials would use law enforcement and probably firemen to seize supplies (commandeer them) for administrative and support staff, so looting of many caches of supplies might not be possible. I would expect this as a high probability outcome with the merchants giving them a bill of sale for it, and a promissory note. Very plausible, for you have to provide water for deputies, policemen, firemen, otherwise complete breakdown of society.

A lot of bushcraft folks know other ways of extracting drinkable water from maples(first) and birches(later) but this is contingent upon weather such that sap rises, otherwise it won't work, and this is very much later. You need frosty nights and warm days. So this again won't work for the beginning of Winter at all.
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 1110734
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11/25/2012 07:46 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
The entire East coast is doomed in a full stop of supply.

With the concentrated traffic and car accidents many people will be heading west on foot.

It would take 6 months before the people got together in rag tag communes.

The first couple of months would be the height of chaos, rape, murder.

Let's not forget the cruel winters and sudden drought.

*************
In a rolling backout of supply scenario. Those closest to city centers would be dead first and those on the out skirts would have a much better time.

Trucks would be ambushed for supply's. Rail yards would become the new airport with supply's coming in body's going out.

Military and police forces will patrol and escort supply routes with police dogs patrolling gated community's.

Many farmers will loose their land by force and the land will be compounded into a single large farm land run by corporation's.

*************
Hunger is a weapon.

The secondary weapons are germs.

Without supply's metropolitan areas will become breeding grounds for lethal biological agents.

The perfect cover to release a virus.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 28428659


There's some good ideas here. I hope you translate that into some potential statistics, some reasons you think it will progress that way, and why. Rather than comment and agree or disagree, I hope you put some flesh on this skeletal structure, for there's some merit here.
SilverPatriot

User ID: 10518597
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11/25/2012 07:52 PM

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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
As for heat I doubt you can burn wood or furniture to pieces of a house.

Fire bands will be in effect. Those who start fires to survive will could be promptly arrested.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 28428659


In a scenario with a breakdown in food, supply chains the only ones looking for signs of wood burning would be the hungry and you will see the loyalty of law enforcement quickly break down if they too become hungry.

With all the chaos, occurring around them a small would not garner their attention s those in urban areas will be burning down and looting everything. Further once supply and food stores have been looted how many of these unprepared clueless population know how to procure and make water safe to drink.

The point would be to have enough supplies to hunker down and survive through the raging moron stage thus allowing them to cull their own ranks.
 Quoting: SilverPatriot


Good comment...so say there's enough liquids in an average persons's home to sustain them for ____ number of days + some will loot from stores so they could last _____number of days. Others would attempt to collect from local streams and last for ___number of days but eventually die from dyssentary. Minimal well digging will occur as it's community activity and difficult to do in Winter. It will happen. Little rainfall in Winter, but some snowmelt in limited areas at higher elevations and probably lower population density most places, but places like Denver might get a lot. Then take an average to see survivability over a month's duration for dehydration.

Some government officials would use law enforcement and probably firemen to seize supplies (commandeer them) for administrative and support staff, so looting of many caches of supplies might not be possible. I would expect this as a high probability outcome with the merchants giving them a bill of sale for it, and a promissory note. Very plausible, for you have to provide water for deputies, policemen, firemen, otherwise complete breakdown of society.

A lot of bushcraft folks know other ways of extracting drinkable water from maples(first) and birches(later) but this is contingent upon weather such that sap rises, otherwise it won't work, and this is very much later. You need frosty nights and warm days. So this again won't work for the beginning of Winter at all.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 1110734


I was speaking of urban areas where the bulk of the population would loot electronic devices first even if the power grid were out of commission.

Granted local police firemen might be used to commandeer supplies however if you have no activity or fires going they will not waste their efforts on your home whereby the jerks on your rod have those propane generators would appear to have supplies thus the risk is worth taking.

Firefighters and police will quickly realize that looters will take their uniforms to ransack unsuspecting civilians and they will become targets for those protecting their homes.

Many people who have homes also have wells and a well bucket will procure you all the water you need although a filtration system will be necessary.
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 1110734
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11/25/2012 07:52 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
"I wanted to start a new topic, and I'd like it to be a serious discussion based on critical thinking, not opinion. I'm interested in supply chain disruptions and the long term effects of a decrease in population as a result of that disruption."

Based on my studies on famines/disasters around the world recent and through history this would not be enough to cause any significant decrease in population.

It would be hard going and a lot of poverty, but not a great effect on the population.

Nothing apart from a massive war on the scale never seen on American soil, a massive regional or an even bigger global disaster bigger than anything in recorded history that kills millions and devastates a truly huge area or a pandemic on an astounding scale will cause any significant reduction in population in America.

All other economic/drought scenarios although they can have a massive effect on society will not cause a significant reduction in population in America.

Could you explain why a supply chain disruption on such a massive scale, and the absence of enough food gathered locally, or even more to the point water...would not cause death? Do you think it's implausible?

Do you think the government would be able to control the supply chains and keep up the food and water supply and the infrastructure to support it? Why?

I'm curious because we just basically had a test of a small portion of the country with Hurricane Sandy. While the Hurricane affected a portion of the NE Atlantic Seaboard, the really tough section was a miniscule portion of that, and yet it took quite a bit of time to establish supply chains for there alone. So why would a bigger crisis over all of the country be easier? Not be facetious, promise.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 28410867
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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11/25/2012 08:10 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
I was speaking of urban areas where the bulk of the population would loot electronic devices first even if the power grid were out of commission.

Granted local police firemen might be used to commandeer supplies however if you have no activity or fires going they will not waste their efforts on your home whereby the jerks on your rod have those propane generators would appear to have supplies thus the risk is worth taking.

Firefighters and police will quickly realize that looters will take their uniforms to ransack unsuspecting civilians and they will become targets for those protecting their homes.

Many people who have homes also have wells and a well bucket will procure you all the water you need although a filtration system will be necessary.
 Quoting: SilverPatriot


Yes, I agree with you. In a collapse, the wrong items are looted, because a lot of people that would loot (and all people will eventually loot) them.

It's plausible that as society broke down for officials to be attacked, and it's a common scenario that imposters create checkpoints to steal supplies. Agree this will happen later in the scenario, perhaps as early as a week or two in the crisis.

Yes, I was reading about the Ogallala Aquifer specifically and also looking at wells of the USA in general. 15% of Americans have wells (according to the EPA) , so those folks won't be as affected, and are rural and less likely to see a horde...here's why I believe that to be logically true.

Since the Horde won't have much fuel, and as they move from their origin point to the next metro area, they'll hit congestion from those people departing.
Look at these maps:
[link to mapcollection.files.wordpress.com]
[link to www.mapofusa.net]
Now, both show what people in the Northeast are up against as they migrate away from urban centers to perceived safe zones. West (low population density, but drought) and South (warm climate and good growing season, but rednecks with high gun ownership per capita).

Your car has a effective range, and even if there's zero traffic, then you must refuel. However there will probably be limitations on travel; it's only logical, and so one could flee from one area and then be stuck in a new area.

Regardless, you can only take a limited amount of water in your vehicle due to cargo space and weight. Many people could die this way too of dehydration and starvation while in transit, or while sitting by the side of the road in Winter or trying to walk.

Walking on smooth pavement is not as hard, but harrowing under these conditions. The majority being obese and not used to physical activity would likely die from exposure and injury. Also physical activity of this nature requires higher caloric input (more food) and more hydration.
SilverPatriot

User ID: 10518597
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11/25/2012 08:20 PM

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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
Nothing apart from a massive war on the scale never seen on American soil, a massive regional or an even bigger global disaster bigger than anything in recorded history that kills millions and devastates a truly huge area or a pandemic on an astounding scale will cause any significant reduction in population in America.

All other economic/drought scenarios although they can have a massive effect on society will not cause a significant reduction in population in America.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 28410867


I suspect that you have never experienced hunger and what effects that might have upon a population, Australia experiences floods and droughts consider the impact upon your country if supply chains to your country were broken.

Next, consider urban areas whatever country whose population has food for one or two weeks tops if food no longer reached these places what would happen.

Look at the predominately-socialist government dependent in the northeast region of the US during Hurricane Sandy and how these unprepared people wailed for food, water and even underwear while the year prior hurricane Irene hit misstate NY hardest there were no screams for someone to care for them.

When conditions permitted, we ventured out and helped our neighbors and understanding snowstorms we were better prepared it makes a difference.

With urban areas the initial problem is greed, gangs that are not equipped to properly access their situation much rioting, and looting would occur as in any urban area.
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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11/25/2012 08:35 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
I suspect that you have never experienced hunger and what effects that might have upon a population, Australia experiences floods and droughts consider the impact upon your country if supply chains to your country were broken.

Next, consider urban areas whatever country whose population has food for one or two weeks tops if food no longer reached these places what would happen.

Look at the predominately-socialist government dependent in the northeast region of the US during Hurricane Sandy and how these unprepared people wailed for food, water and even underwear while the year prior hurricane Irene hit misstate NY hardest there were no screams for someone to care for them.

When conditions permitted, we ventured out and helped our neighbors and understanding snowstorms we were better prepared it makes a difference.

With urban areas the initial problem is greed, gangs that are not equipped to properly access their situation much rioting, and looting would occur as in any urban area.
 Quoting: SilverPatriot


I think Hurricane Sandy proved that we're not preparing well for disasters. While we've invested more and more money for FEMA, it doesn't seem that they're very good at deployment whatsoever.

Think about it, all they had to do was move water, fuel, food, generators. That's not rocket science. These areas had established supply chains that could have been politely asked to raise amounts immediately and applied political pressure and incentives, for usually private industry is better than any government entity, with the possible exception of the military.

What did they do? Asks for bids. They don't have loads of these things within a radius of the affected region. They needed a supply to move to that area.

Now multiple that times all of the metro regions. It's counter-intuitive that more would result in any ease of supply chains to maintain flow.

Yes, I agree. Much of coping is regionally-based due to positve (can-do-it) attitude and experience with hardship.

Even if gangs were organied enough to loot well, I think the resulting violence would kill them long before they could transition into rural areas with wells. I think we're in agreement that it would burn out, much a fire break is created to burn out a forest fire.
SilverPatriot

User ID: 10518597
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11/25/2012 08:46 PM

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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
I was speaking of urban areas where the bulk of the population would loot electronic devices first even if the power grid were out of commission.

Granted local police firemen might be used to commandeer supplies however if you have no activity or fires going they will not waste their efforts on your home whereby the jerks on your rod have those propane generators would appear to have supplies thus the risk is worth taking.

Firefighters and police will quickly realize that looters will take their uniforms to ransack unsuspecting civilians and they will become targets for those protecting their homes.

Many people who have homes also have wells and a well bucket will procure you all the water you need although a filtration system will be necessary.
 Quoting: SilverPatriot


Yes, I agree with you. In a collapse, the wrong items are looted, because a lot of people that would loot (and all people will eventually loot) them.

It's plausible that as society broke down for officials to be attacked, and it's a common scenario that imposters create checkpoints to steal supplies. Agree this will happen later in the scenario, perhaps as early as a week or two in the crisis.

Yes, I was reading about the Ogallala Aquifer specifically and also looking at wells of the USA in general. 15% of Americans have wells (according to the EPA) , so those folks won't be as affected, and are rural and less likely to see a horde...here's why I believe that to be logically true.

Since the Horde won't have much fuel, and as they move from their origin point to the next metro area, they'll hit congestion from those people departing.
Look at these maps:
[link to mapcollection.files.wordpress.com]
[link to www.mapofusa.net]
Now, both show what people in the Northeast are up against as they migrate away from urban centers to perceived safe zones. West (low population density, but drought) and South (warm climate and good growing season, but rednecks with high gun ownership per capita).

Your car has a effective range, and even if there's zero traffic, then you must refuel. However there will probably be limitations on travel; it's only logical, and so one could flee from one area and then be stuck in a new area.

Regardless, you can only take a limited amount of water in your vehicle due to cargo space and weight. Many people could die this way too of dehydration and starvation while in transit, or while sitting by the side of the road in Winter or trying to walk.

Walking on smooth pavement is not as hard, but harrowing under these conditions. The majority being obese and not used to physical activity would likely die from exposure and injury. Also physical activity of this nature requires higher caloric input (more food) and more hydration.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 1110734


Your points are valid, one must evaluate the pros, and cons of leaving any area if you have a well and supplies it would be best to stay put instead of trying to reach your more remote location.

You have consider different scenarios especially in the northeast do you have enough warm clothing, wool blankets and n alternative heat source and can you purify your water.

You must dismiss any thought of rescue from he government as that will not happen and if you willingly submit, you become a useless eating prisoner.

Another erroneous mindset is that you need tons of guns, which will only give away your position when slingshots, crossbows and pistol crossbows will better serve you.

Being in shape is important we have two large dogs that we place backpacks on and hike although our elderly St. Bernard only carries an empty backpack these days the Anatolian Shepherd is a formable guardian and watchdog.

Most importantly, the hungry hordes will not be able to think clearly and if you doubt this imagine that you have not had proper nutrition and water for just a couple days your judgment will be desperate and way off the mark.
SilverPatriot

User ID: 10518597
United States
11/25/2012 09:13 PM

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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
I suspect that you have never experienced hunger and what effects that might have upon a population, Australia experiences floods and droughts consider the impact upon your country if supply chains to your country were broken.

Next, consider urban areas whatever country whose population has food for one or two weeks tops if food no longer reached these places what would happen.

Look at the predominately-socialist government dependent in the northeast region of the US during Hurricane Sandy and how these unprepared people wailed for food, water and even underwear while the year prior hurricane Irene hit misstate NY hardest there were no screams for someone to care for them.

When conditions permitted, we ventured out and helped our neighbors and understanding snowstorms we were better prepared it makes a difference.

With urban areas the initial problem is greed, gangs that are not equipped to properly access their situation much rioting, and looting would occur as in any urban area.
 Quoting: SilverPatriot


I think Hurricane Sandy proved that we're not preparing well for disasters. While we've invested more and more money for FEMA, it doesn't seem that they're very good at deployment whatsoever.

Think about it, all they had to do was move water, fuel, food, generators. That's not rocket science. These areas had established supply chains that could have been politely asked to raise amounts immediately and applied political pressure and incentives, for usually private industry is better than any government entity, with the possible exception of the military.

What did they do? Asks for bids. They don't have loads of these things within a radius of the affected region. They needed a supply to move to that area.

Now multiple that times all of the metro regions. It's counter-intuitive that more would result in any ease of supply chains to maintain flow.

Yes, I agree. Much of coping is regionally-based due to positve (can-do-it) attitude and experience with hardship.

Even if gangs were organied enough to loot well, I think the resulting violence would kill them long before they could transition into rural areas with wells. I think we're in agreement that it would burn out, much a fire break is created to burn out a forest fire.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 1110734


When Hurricane Irene hit the Mid Hudson region of New York, one of our friends experienced a landslide and they swallowed their pride, asked for a low cost loan from FEMA, and they were promptly denied citing a multitude of reasons why they could not help.

We had a chainsaw thus downed trees were cut and readied for removal by other friends with heavy equipment they moved the dirt and debris from their driveway. We had an extra propane heater that we loaned to our elderly neighbors who were capable of making coffee while others of us did the heavy work.

We discovered two who had propane generators who felt they were not obliged to help others and slid by because they were able to shop this time within two days. If the food chain were disrupted guess whom will be ignored and the fact they have children does not impact my decision to ignore them as we know what they will grow up to be thus morals do indeed count.
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 1110734
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11/25/2012 09:22 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
Your points are valid, one must evaluate the pros, and cons of leaving any area if you have a well and supplies it would be best to stay put instead of trying to reach your more remote location.

You have consider different scenarios especially in the northeast do you have enough warm clothing, wool blankets and n alternative heat source and can you purify your water.

You must dismiss any thought of rescue from he government as that will not happen and if you willingly submit, you become a useless eating prisoner.

Another erroneous mindset is that you need tons of guns, which will only give away your position when slingshots, crossbows and pistol crossbows will better serve you.

Being in shape is important we have two large dogs that we place backpacks on and hike although our elderly St. Bernard only carries an empty backpack these days the Anatolian Shepherd is a formable guardian and watchdog.

Most importantly, the hungry hordes will not be able to think clearly and if you doubt this imagine that you have not had proper nutrition and water for just a couple days your judgment will be desperate and way off the mark.
 Quoting: SilverPatriot


Yes, besides the exposure issues, what you said about blood glucose levels (this is what causes hunger and desperation) is the key. I was recently reading about SERE (Survival, Evasion, Resistance, Escape) training in the military. While these are very disciplined and highly trained people, after two days of no food, they began to steal from their teammates. Others ate things which made them sicker and got bad cases of diarrhea.They also burned up more calories searching than they were able to replenish.

The hunger outweighed the risk of stealing from each other, and while they learned to identify some plants and animals, many incorrectly indentified them or improperly cooked them. They were in effect very confused and weak. Had it lasted longer, people would have started to have major health issues.

Dehydration happens very fast and creates dizziness, weakness, and towards the end hallucinations. I doubt many people could cope well, particularly due to being docile to begin with and out of shape.
SilverPatriot

User ID: 10518597
United States
11/25/2012 09:47 PM

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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
Your points are valid, one must evaluate the pros, and cons of leaving any area if you have a well and supplies it would be best to stay put instead of trying to reach your more remote location.

You have consider different scenarios especially in the northeast do you have enough warm clothing, wool blankets and n alternative heat source and can you purify your water.

You must dismiss any thought of rescue from he government as that will not happen and if you willingly submit, you become a useless eating prisoner.

Another erroneous mindset is that you need tons of guns, which will only give away your position when slingshots, crossbows and pistol crossbows will better serve you.

Being in shape is important we have two large dogs that we place backpacks on and hike although our elderly St. Bernard only carries an empty backpack these days the Anatolian Shepherd is a formable guardian and watchdog.

Most importantly, the hungry hordes will not be able to think clearly and if you doubt this imagine that you have not had proper nutrition and water for just a couple days your judgment will be desperate and way off the mark.
 Quoting: SilverPatriot


Yes, besides the exposure issues, what you said about blood glucose levels (this is what causes hunger and desperation) is the key. I was recently reading about SERE (Survival, Evasion, Resistance, Escape) training in the military. While these are very disciplined and highly trained people, after two days of no food, they began to steal from their teammates. Others ate things which made them sicker and got bad cases of diarrhea.They also burned up more calories searching than they were able to replenish.

The hunger outweighed the risk of stealing from each other, and while they learned to identify some plants and animals, many incorrectly indentified them or improperly cooked them. They were in effect very confused and weak. Had it lasted longer, people would have started to have major health issues.

Dehydration happens very fast and creates dizziness, weakness, and towards the end hallucinations. I doubt many people could cope well, particularly due to being docile to begin with and out of shape.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 1110734


Identify edible plants is key to survival and many over look the lowly dandelion and fail to understand that the entire plant flowers, leaves and roots are edible. If you know Native Americans, they will tech you how to prepare the native Poke plant that is otherwise poisonous.

My brother experienced numerous strokes and a gangrenous colon, an unchecked hernia has been debilitated by infections, dehydration therefore his mind is lost in delusion, and we must continuously inform him that our mother passed away years ago.

Dehydration causes far more severe mental issues then the casual observer can process and this condition occurs far more quickly than most understand.
Anonymous Coward
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11/25/2012 10:05 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
Law enforcement would be non existant. The police would probably be the first ones killed when the masses see they have no real plan to control the masses. They would be the object of rage of the mass riots that would start in the very early stages of a breakdown.
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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11/25/2012 10:23 PM
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Re: Human survivability with supply chain disruptions and its effect on populations
Law enforcement would be non existant. The police would probably be the first ones killed when the masses see they have no real plan to control the masses. They would be the object of rage of the mass riots that would start in the very early stages of a breakdown.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 26860321


Maybe not non-existent, but a high probability that their numbers would dwindle due to attrition. For example in Hurricane Katrina, 25% of the police force left. Who knows what a protracted collapse would do. You can't pay them. Their families are in danger unless bunkered. It's a valid point.
[link to www.cgsc.edu]
excerp

"Some places, such as New Orleans, seemingly descended into anarchy. There were reports that as many as 25 percent of the New Orleans police force walked off the job. “They indicated that they had lost everything and didn’t feel that it was worth them going back to take fire from looters and losing their lives,” said Colonel Henry Whitehorn of the Louisiana state police.19 New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin claimed that the city was overrun by “drug-starving crazy addicts, drug addicts, that are wreaking havoc. And we don’t have the manpower to adequately deal with it. We can only target certain sections of the city and form a perimeter around them and hope to God that we’re not overrun.”20

Original source:
“Mayor to Feds: ‘Get Off Your Asses,’” CNN, 2 September 2005) [link to www.cnn.com] (accessed 18 March 2008)

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