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  •  excellent: that's exactly how we all... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    trashablanca, lemming22, dotcommodity

    should respond to this crisis.

    Bottom line is, there's no way to avoid a wreck, but if we slam on the brakes as hard as we can, we can minimize the damage and the casualties.  And that is the goal to which we must dedicate ourselves: doing everything possible to minimize the intensity and duration of the crisis.  

    Necessary steps include:

    Most important: recognize that there is no one single "magic bullet" solution to all of this.  Solutions are partial, local, and very diverse, and all of them will be needed.  

    Replace fossil fuels with climate-clean power: solar, wind, nuclear, hydro, geothermal, and improved efficiency, and good old-fashioned conservation.

    Immediately double the fuel efficiency standards of motor vehicles across the board, including the transition to electric vehicles, and the transition to as widespread and pervasive use of public transport and bicycles as possible.

    Negative population growth:  Overpopulation is the root cause of all of our present sustainability crises.  The sustainable population of Earth, at a European standard of living, is TWO billion humans, not 6.5 billion, and certainly not 9 billion.  Immediate steps that are needed, worldwide and without exception:  Education and equality for women, universal and free access to all contraceptive methods, appropriate education in the use of contraceptives, and social pressure toward single-child families.  

    Negative economic growth:  Infinite economic growth on a finite planet is as impossible as a mathematical statement that an infinity can be a subset of an integer.  Growth in one place will necessarily be offset by contraction in another.  The transition to a negataive-growth economy is fraught with danger and must be managed carefully.  And as a Libertarian Democrat, I say the following with great reluctance but with recognition of necessity: redistribution of wealth downward to assure that everyone has the essentials for survival and basic human dignity; otherwise we will see violent social explosions in every society including our own.

    Relocalization of economies:  The climate crisis coincides with "peak oil," the end of cheap abundant fossil fuels.  Thus, wasteful use of transportation must cease.  There will be no more imported fruit, 3,000 mile salads, or a lot of other luxuries we take for granted.  There will be no more commuting of office workers to downtown offices when telecommuting will allow jobs to be done from home, and jobs that depend on hands-on will have to be decentralized.  Necessities notably food, will have to be produced as locally as possible.

    In essence the choice we have is between a permanent 1930s Depression economy, and a permanent WW2 spartan economy.  The only other "choices" are violent upheavals and regional resource wars, widespread famine, and a generalized regression into a lengthy dark age.  

    And if you think this is even the slightest bit hyperbolic, go back and read the science, and sit down and give it serious thought.  This stuff is as inevitable as death and taxes.  And the most tragic part is,  it didn't need to be that way.  But now that it is, our only choice is to get realistic and deal with it.  And if you're looking for an upside or some reason to not become thoroughly depressed, consider how the spartan lifestyle in the WW2 era enabled us to beat fascism.  We rolled up our sleeves and got to work, we built and we fought and we ultimately won.  And we didn't do it for "ourselves" as much as for our children and grandchildren.

    You can find the courage in yourself to face the facts, and to do what needs to be done.  Every single one of your ancestors since Day One did the same or you would not be here right now.  That's a track record of 100% success between Day One and ourselves today.  We can do likewise.  Count on it, and do it.  

    •  except hydro will lose up to 50% (0+ / 0-)

      when glaciers melt, and no nukes please, because of the corruption/crony factor.
      They will use up all the funding we need to get clean off the ground.
      If Wall street will fund them, fine (which they no longer will, after seeing their 1 billion dollar asset turn into a 2 billion dollar liability.) Nuke plants are just another Republican welfare program.

      ...I believe in a world renewably powered with clean energy: economically, equitably, ecologically and elegantly enjoyed...

      by dotcommodity on Tue May 01, 2007 at 07:13:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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