Tank Terminals: The New Normal?
Gradually the world is returning to the New Normal. But what is that Normal, is it normal or abnormal? Does normal mean the same as before the Corona crisis, back to business as usual? Fritjof Capra, the famous physicist said that only an dramatic event would change people’s behaviour, which has actually happened. Careless people were suddenly reminded that they too are mortals, but the issue is that fear of death replaced intelligence by reactionary measures that spelled misery for the most of us for the long term. Whilst many people died from complications accelerated by the virus, billions more suddenly are facing immediate poverty because they are forbidden to work any longer and imprisoned in draconian lockdowns resulting in dehumanising effects.
The Central Bank in the Netherlands has issued a warning that unemployment could double and that economic restabilisation was not to be expected any time soon. So how can we go back to business as usual if the business is no longer there? The old financial paradigm is just not compatible with today’s economic and societal situation.
A new design is needed, not based on growth, which is the mantra central banks and corporations like to use, but balanced business based on the carrying capacity of our planet. A new, sustainable design is needed, because only then we can avoid a next virus outbreak because, as a systems thinker, I can see a direct causal link between Corona and our old ways of doing business. We have to develop a basic income system for everyone, which is in my view the only way to avoid chaos, misery and war. Now is the moment to do so.
It is no use to save path-dependent businesses like airlines, because when people are losing their jobs or international meetings can be done online, the usual frequent flyers won’t fly that much any more. A rationalisation of economics is needed, not based on statistical prognosis but on reality, through real-time information feedback.
You know, it comes down to this: a new design of the economic system must be based on cybernetics, the science of communication and information. We can look at society, understand its complexity, see what is there and what is missing, ease dissent, and work according to the Law of Requisite Variety to create a resilient economy that is circular, self-maintining and self-regulating.
I have been creating the criteria and conditions for such a design. No, they are not utopic, but feasible. But who is able or willing to lead this inescapble paradigm shift? In our storage, handling, transporting and trading business of hazardous cargoes, we can start by looking at how nature sustains itself, and develop non-hazardous products, which will be a good starting point, hopefully copied by other sectors.
One things is very clear, without innovative initiatives from within our industry there will be entropy. I am sure you have noticed that this New Normal is the current state of disorder.