PATH TO A SUSTAINABLE EARTH
It is finally sinking in that we have no choice but to become sustaining residents on this planet. To become sustainable, we have to accept that we are trustees of this planet, and have an obligation to future generations. The need to ditch fossil fuels essential, but we also need to stabilize the worlds population, accept responsibility for the future impact of anything we make or sell, and ensure that the entire eco-system can survive.
COORDINATED ACTION WITH LARGEST IMPACT
Renewable electric grid reduces emissions 30%
SINGLE ACTION WITH LARGEST IMPACT
Electric car & roof solar reduce emissions 25%
Industrial conversion to electricity and carbon capture 21%
Housing and commercial conversion to electricity 12%
Agriculture conversion to renewable practices 9%
Air travel conversion to hydrogen fuel 3%
In the last 20 years renewable generation has increased to 15% of total generation, and is now cheaper to install than fossil fuel. To convert to renewables will take a big investment but again is doable. In 20-30 years it is realistic that these actions could produce a 50% reduction in fossil fuel use.
As an "average" USA resident, you drive 14,000 miles a year at 24 mpg. You can reduce your fossil fuel use today by 20% simply by changing to an electric car, because they are 5x more efficient. Home based solar can take care of the additional generation, saving another 5%. It also costs around $2000 a year LESS to run. The average lifespan of car is 11 years, so in 22 years most cars could be converted.
The challenge with industrial emissions are the many different processes that are generators. The largest industrial emissions come from the cement industry, and there are some major projects to change materials and processes to convert to electricity and integrate carbon capture. The same model will need to be applied to many other products.
Home and commercial facilities have to convert fossil fuel use for heating air and water to electric. Building codes for "all electric" construction need to be introduced.
Agriculture needs make several changes. First, convert from fossil fuel to electric. Maximize nutrition per acre planting, for example by eliminate all planting for biofuels a uniquely wasteful process, and eliminate planting for low nutrition additives such as palm oil. Minimize water, fertilizer and pesticide use. Everyone needs to move towards a plant based diet, as traditional meat takes a lot of energy.
Air travel will take longer as they need to be converted to hydrogen fuel.
Social pressure and economics are already moving us towards 2 child families, rewilding and recycling - we just need to get better at it.
Sustainability is just the latest of many key events in our evolution; the big bang, the start of life, the KT meter that killed off the dinosaurs, humans, the start of agriculture, leading to the mass acceptance of belief systems. The Renaissance Popes accepted that science was not in conflict with dogma, and Leonardo da Vinci thrived. The scientific revolution of our understanding of the world led inevitably to global warming. The change to sustaining residents of the planet will just be the next key event.
How did we get here..............................
How do we get there.........................
KEY EVENTS TO SUSTAINABILITY