View Full Version : Newsweek: A Really Inconvient Truth
07-08-2006, 09:58 AM
The population will double by 2050, and so will the consumption and CO2 emissions. Article says the only practicle solution is to agressively find a way to power our world without fossil fuels. It contricts Al Gore saying Global Warming is an engineering problem, not a moral problem. There is truth to both assertions, IHMO. The general public must first mandate the governments to make this a priority, then it's an engineering problem.
Newsweek Story (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/13723897/site/newsweek/)
07-08-2006, 02:44 PM
I know that article is pessismistic, but I think it means our efforts to drive farther on a gallon of gas is more critical. Hopefully the general public will wake up sooner, not later.
07-08-2006, 08:46 PM
If they really expect the population to double from *here*
by 2050, it's high time to open up those voluntary euthanasia
centers and pass out condoms like candy.
They're *so* not getting it. Reduce the number of *consumers*
of fossil fuel is yet another completely valid strategy...
"back to a billion"
07-08-2006, 08:52 PM
The population in Europe and Japan is declining. America's is increasing only because of immigration. The population explosion is limited to the Third World and developing nations, although it's quite an explosion.
07-09-2006, 12:09 PM
What's funny is that we're the ones fueling the explosion by sending food and medicine to poor countries. Without our aid, they would die at a far higher rate and there would be no such population explosion.
So it's an interesting moral problem: Let a billion or two people die now in hopes of a more sustainable future 50 years from now, or make them so healthy that they produce another four billion people in 50 years thus potentially dooming 8 to 10 billion people to death as the planet exceeds capacity and we pass the point of no return.
___As usual, you bring up a morbid but ultimate truth …
___This brings back recollections of Chicago’s “Great Society” experiment that led one generation of the poor to produce the next for upwards of 3 and 4 generations. After 40 + years of this experiment gone bad, the Chicago area “Projects” subsidies have disappeared, the areas are being cleaned up and renovated, and those same housing/building complexes that once were in control of the gangs, drug dealer’s, and ultimately under privileged poor are being purchased at market rates for upscale Condo and Apartment conversions. Where those that lived in the heavily subsidized homes/apartments/building slums are today, I have no idea but Chicago has become a much nicer area to visit since the decision to pull the rug out from under the “Great Society” experiment. The appearance of a very positive outcome after the realization that intrusion into the natural scheme of things is one many should pay attention too.
___Are we encouraging an underprivileged population to succeed or are we promoting an even worse future for generations yet to come? A tough call but on the flip side, what if a future Nikola Tesla or Albert Einstein were allowed to die of hunger or disease because he or she was born in the wrong country, under the wrong political regime, or with the wrong color skin? I hope we as a society of riches can help rather then harm in the longer term with consideration to exactly what you pointed out above.
___As you can tell, I am sitting on the fence about the best I know how :(
07-09-2006, 02:06 PM
I'll have to be an oddball here regarding "The Real Inconvenient Truth"
Some here have faith that the general public will come around and be less wasteful. I do not.
Most of us here have learned the $$$ which can be saved by modifying driving habits-ranging from basic, simple techniques to the far extreme fringe.
I've spent 2.5 years trying to spread the word about this, I know many of you others have as well.
I'm sure you have found the same results as me: very few try it, most scoff, some against it and even call us dangerous.
When gas exceeded $1.00/g in 2004 people were shocked. Gas is 3x more expensive than then and not much change on the road and large wasteful vehicles sell like crazy.
But I don't have the luxury to be pessimistic. I have a family and 3 children.
As an eternal optimist I realize:
1. The dramatic increase in automotive technology. My 1st car was a '71 Pinto. An economical car did around 20-24MPG but was dog slow at 19sec 0-60. My friend had a Vega AT and was much worse.
Today we have cars like HCH and Prius which double efficiency and marked performance.
2. The dramatic increase in automotive emissions. I remember when cars didn't even have EGR. Now look how much stricter it is, and every city car requires annual testing.
Next year cleaner burning diesel fuel comes to market. 20 years ago I don't think anyone would really have cared. Entire diesel car lines have been removed until they can meet the new, even stricter emission rating.
3. Coal fired plants have made big environmental improvements in reducing emissions.
4. Wind farms are beginning to come on line.
5. Technology is advancing so rapidly it can be difficult to keep up with.
I remember when only those black-cat carbon based Eveready batteries were available. Then came Alkaline and rechargeable. Then came NiCad, Nimh and Li-ion. Fuel cells may or may not become available but it is sure something better is coming.
People in general may resist change but in many ways the world is so much better place than years ago. No, my head isn't in the sand and has degraded in other areas.
I don't know if global warming is man made or not but won't prescribe to some media's doom, gloom, no-way-out we're all gonna die like it or not theory. The Jim Jones solution is not necessary.
Yes, the future is very bright for my family...and yours too! :)
Who is to know that some great non-polluting major fuel source or super food isn't around the corner or something else to come along and turn it around.
Speaking of war, isn't it strange how after most of the male population is gone that most babies are born male, not female until it's about even again? Strange indeed!
07-09-2006, 04:08 PM
I love straight shooters like Brandon. Most folks would rather hear a bunch of lies that sound good, I'll take the truth every time (unless a woman is involved).
HG it is nice to hear some realistic optimism as well. I tend to dwell a bit too much on the doom and gloom end of the truth. Some PMA goes a long way.
07-09-2006, 09:32 PM
There is that saying: "History books record Man's accomplishments - Newspapers his failures". This article is gloomy. I have heard that the developing world is not populating quite as fast as it was (i.e. it could be more crowded than 9 billion in 2050) As nations catch up with North America, Europe, Japan the birth rate goes down. Some are saying by mid-century the world population will peak and start to moderate. I don't think that is going to console a lot of people....
The consumption of resources is greater than the population, and like the article says, we need to find non-fosil fuel alternatives.
I'll agree with Hot Georgia that some progress has been made, and hope that more will be made and allow the Earth to remain livable. I'm also discouraged by the hostility towards hypermilers on the information superhighway and the real highways....if only these people were just hurting themselves...I'd be more indifferent and they would be more concerned....that's the rub - they don't care.
I have worked with pet rescues and there are a lot of similarities. The root problem in both is irresponsibility. The reason pet rescues exist is people don't spay and neuter their pets. On average 60% of the cats and dogs going to the Animal Pound don't make it out alive. :( It's been proven that sterilizing pets not only saves animal suffering, it saves taxpayer's money. I don't think it would take much persuasion to convice you I have irresponsible pet owner stories to match the bad driver/poseur driver stories. ;)
I know that cats and dogs will continue to be put to sleep for the forseeable future or get dumped in the streets with a live expectancy of maybe three years - people are going to be irresponsible. Just the same, I'll do what I can.
BTW Tiger, I want to assure you the way you got your Maine Coon was proper and from a responsible breeder. :)
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