In this paper we focus on long-term socio-ecological transitions from the agrarian to the industrial metabolic regime. Statistical analysis is used to identify structural breaks in the development of energy use in the second half of the 20th century. A stabilization of per capita energy and resource use in most high-income countries was reached in the early 1970s, after a period of accelerated growth of resource use since the end of World War II. Most empirical turns in trend coincide with the oil price crises of 1973 and 1979. This stabilization could offer lessons for a future sustainability transition
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