Energy Transition

In the 1960s, Buckminster Fuller realized we needed to use our resources of fossil fuels to switch to unlimited, renewable sources. ‘The fossil fuel deposits of our Spaceship Earth correspond to our automobile’s storage battery which must be conserved to turn over our main engine’s self-starter’, he noted. ‘Thereafter, our “main engine”, the life regenerative processes, must operate exclusively on our vast daily energy income from the powers of wind, tide, water, and the direct Sun radiation energy.’

We have the technical ability to make this energy transition, but our time for accomplishing it is short. Whatever it takes, we must force our global civilization to put the brakes on its current momentum, and change its course. What are our options? How can we individually and in our communities support this rapid transition?

 

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Kingsley L. DennisDaniel, it also depends on what perspective you consider 'rapid transition' - it was not rapid when Europe shifted from using wood (after cutting down most of its forests!) - yet it became more rapid once steam power was invented/introduced. Hence, the transition will be accelerated in line with new technologies being discovered that will help people to shift their thinking about the possibilities of new models. There are many technologies out there being worked on, from forms of bio-power to plausible cold-fusion techniques - yet none of them have come to scale yet. I sense we are in the 'blotting paper' mode whereby the paper is filling up with many ink dots (new technologies) but they have not yet joined together to change the colour of the whole blotting paper (scaled up). My sense is that we will not initially have ONE new energy source coming into play, as this will encourage continued centralization of power distribution, but rather various new technologies that can be utilized over localized, distributed models - such as improved solar panel technologies; radically new cell-battery (Tesla) capacity; coastal & river tidal/wave power; bio-produced local systems; magnetic power models..etc...all combining to converge against the monolithic industry of fossil fuel...

Annie CharnleyWe haven't done this yet, because it won't make companies as much money as they get now from fossil fuels. Again those greed and success values seem to be driving it. Like in politics, consumerism and the media too.

Daniel PinchbeckSome people are looking at the potential for a "solar singularity" - a friend wrote a book with this name. It come quickly, despite naysayers like Vaclav Smil. 

Michal StefanowCan someone please apply "REALITY CHECK" for me?

* Why build coal plant... http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-10-1…

* ... when solar is cheaper? http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-05-0…(it's Dubai so it's sunny all the time)

Wish I was better at making to start realisising concepts and ideas: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zero-point_energy


Stellar MagnetWhat about Tesla/SolarCity and what Elon Musk is doing? he definitely seems on the right path with things (eliminating the global supply chain simply because it's more efficient, even though it's more costly, so most parts are made in house in their US factories). not perfect with the amount of labor required to work at such companies (i don't think 60 hour workweeks are good for the soul, but people that work at Elon's companies sometimes think of him as a diety so they are kind of okay with it, bc if you are working on something that is your passion in some ways it can be construed as leisure). But perhaps that's where we can learn from and do it better than him... to ensure the workers are really happy and aren't fired/blamed so immediately for mishaps (he seems to have a lot of anger/ego).

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