Comments on: The silent revolution in energy efficiency Global environmental challenges Wed, 16 Nov 2016 08:14:55 +0000 hourly 1 By: Ryanoceros Mon, 14 Dec 2009 00:04:31 +0000 The key point here is that we can and must change our current way of life, but that we can do so without changing the quality of life. We need to do so ASAP before the developing world makes the mistakes we did with our cities (automobile dependence, urban sprawl, environmental damage). Fortunately, there is an opportunity here to improve quality of life, while reducing environmental footprint if we focus on the right technologies and incentives, and are strong with vested interests that would hold the economy ransom rather than see such change.

By: Larry.Blumen Sun, 13 Dec 2009 22:52:23 +0000 Excellent article.

By: ejgormanjr Sun, 13 Dec 2009 21:43:59 +0000 What a well written and insightful article. It is important to recognize that energy efficiency is a crucial part of any climate action plan, from the household level to international agreements. The experience of California provides another example of how energy efficiency initiatives in the 1970’s showed real and continuing gains in efficiency and cost savings, ostensibly without sacrificing standard or quality of living. The concept is now finally beginning to grow beyond Jimmy Carter’s donning a sweater in the whitehouse to become a cornerstone of our climate and energy future. It can be done!

By: D.Baker Sun, 13 Dec 2009 21:19:47 +0000 Survival of the species, is genetic humanoid behavior, and should not be underestimated!
I count on its being omnipotent, when compared to other human interests.

Dennis Earl Baker

103 – 66 Duncan avenue west

Penticton British Columbia V2A6Z3

Phone/Fax 778-476-3673


The Copenhagen Diagnosis, 2009: Updating the world on the Latest Climate Science. Has again indicated urgency in action is imperative. Here’s my solution and immediate areas of impact.
RE : The solution to climate change.
( human excrement + nuclear waste = hydrogen )
The USA discharges Trillions of tons of sewage annually, sufficient quantity to sustain electrical generation requirements of the USA.
Redirecting existing sewage systems to containment facilities would be a considerable infrastructure modification project.
It is the intense radiation that causes the conversion of organic material into hydrogen, therefore what some would consider the most dangerous waste because of its radiation would be the best for this utilization.
I believe the combination of clean water and clean air, will increase the life expectancy of humans.
The four main areas of concern globally are energy, food,water and air!
The radiologic decomposing of organic materials generates Hydrogen
By using our sewage as a source of energy we also get clean air , clean water, and no ethanol use of food stocks. Eat food first, create energy after.
Simply replacing the fossil fuel powered electrical generating facilities with these plants, would reduce CO2 emissions, and CH4 emissions, to acceptable levels, globally.
This would require a completely new reactor facility capable of converting human waste into hydrogen and then burning the hydrogen to generate electricity on site.
This solution is sellable to citizens because of all the side issue solutions. I’ve been able to convince most simply with concept of using nuclear waste to a productive end.
Superbugs ( antibiotic resistant ) apparently are created in the waters sewage is discharged into, which is one more side issue solution.
Anything not converting into hydrogen will potentially be disposed of using Transmutation.
The water emitted from hydrogen burning will have uses in leaching heavy metals from other contaminated site clean ups.
I thank you for your consideration, please feel free to contact me anytime.
Dennis Baker

By: lecourt Sun, 13 Dec 2009 17:43:35 +0000 I believe the status quo is already untenable.
Forecasts of population growth and increases in standard of living clearly drive us to possible extinction and at the very least to strife and cataclysmic outcomes.
We are a slothful race whose stimulus for the large majority comes from painful consequences. Just read the article and some comments above.
The good news is that the potential solutions to the issue are already available, but, unless we get a price driven prod we wont change, nor will serious effort be put in to even more ingenious solutions. There will be endless gum thumping and second guessing.
How do we mobilise around a common purpose which, if ignored will hit all of us?
“Pay me now or pay me later” might be a rallying cry.

By: ptarmy Sun, 13 Dec 2009 16:42:16 +0000 While it pleases me to hear that the US has increased it’s energy efficiency, there is still much that can be done. As can be seen from the plots of energy use per capita over time, most people don’t care about being energy efficient – they care about how much money they have to spend on energy. The recent spike in gas prices was a great example – this really got people thinking about their driving habits and likely helped eliminate some wasteful driving.

Two things can be done immediately to further reduce our energy use. First, we can establish a standard for energy use per household. If the household exceeds this standard we can slap a substantial tax on their electricity (or gas) bill. The taxes can be used to fund research in areas related to energy efficiency. Second, as hinted at by Pete_Murphy and John-B, we can control the human population by establishing a limit on the number of births. Energy use will always be an issue for society, but these two measures can greatly reduce our usage.

Finally, does anyone ever hang-dry their clothing in the US anymore?

By: John-B Sun, 13 Dec 2009 15:11:44 +0000 Mr. Murphy has hit the nail on the head. Population growth cannot continue indefinitely, but it seems most politicians and policy makers are scared to death to talk about it. Even though it is mathematically certain that the earth can accomodate only a finite number of people, that part of the per capita consumption equation appears to be substantially off limits in climate, ecological, and sociological discussion. One is hard pressed to take such discussions seriously when they ignore the population “gorilla in the room” – and this is not just an American issue.

By: Pete_Murphy Sun, 13 Dec 2009 12:56:02 +0000 “Total consumption from fossil fuels, nuclear, renewable sources and imported electricity tripled between 1949 and 2008 …”

The planet’s natural mechanisms for maintaining a stable climate don’t give a rat’s behind about “efficiency.” As you’ve noted, total energy consumption (and thus carbon emissions) have tripled since 1949. That’s the only figure that matters. Now it has to be reduced back to below that 1949 level. The U.S. goal is to achieve something like an 80% reduction by 2050. Improvements in efficiency alone will never achieve that goal.

No one is talking about the fact that it will be impossible to come anywhere close to that goal while continuing to increase our population. The U.S. actually plans (not projects, but plans) to boost our population by nearly 50% by 2050. The U.S. plans to achieve that population growth primarily through maintaining today’s extremely high rate of immigration.

It’s difficult to take the president’s plan to cut carbon emissions seriously when he continues to import carbon emitters faster than we can improve efficiency.

By: kc10man Sun, 13 Dec 2009 00:28:38 +0000 Its true that we are more energy efficient as a people than we were in the past, but just because their are more of us doesn’t make it OK to increase our impact on the environment. We need still need to strive to reduce our consumption of resources and production of waste. who knows how many people will be here 30 years from now. Of course an Easter island syndrome style Earth would make a good reality show.