Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Green Hope : Green Diversity : Green Frugality

Yes, yes, yes.

I do insist that the collective human imagination, not the sun & the wind, is truly our most inexhaustible form of renewable energy.

Green Hope

Partially just to be provocative but also to give us hope.

Solar and wind power will give us more energy and will give us safer energy and will give us a more permanent energy than burning up old fossils ever did --- but most people really don't believe this, not in their heart of hearts.

Doubting Thomases, they want to wait until the world is fully running on wind and sun before believing it real : but it will never happen if first we don't believe it might and that it can.

They thus then fall into despair over the fate of the world we will leave our grandchildren - a despair with which many Greens - too many Greens - treat as if it was their party birthmark.

But it is not : if despair was truly the key characteristic of Greens, they would have given up hope long ago and taken to partying like its 1972 and that the gasoline will just flow forever.

Greens would be indistinguishable from Donald Trump.

Instead, Greens exhibit a form - an unique form - of technological optimism.

What they share with all technological optimists today (and throughout the ages) is in the belief we will see a steady and ever more efficient use of resources.

Greens tempering Efficiency with Frugality

But one way where they sharply and critically part company with other technological optimists is that they firmly believe that greater efficiency must always be tempered with frugality.

I am quite prepared to insist that no one is truly Green if they do not hold these two values in a careful balance.

So I do not believe one can be Green and wax on and on about all the world driving electric cars powered by wind and sun.

The globe-wide and general human use of electric cars, together with the low density spacial living and work arrangements that make them necessary, will destroy this planet environmentally as surely as fossil fuel cars ever will.

We need to use no more of the world's resources than is necessary to sustain human life without ruining our only lifeboat in this universe - our blue green jewel - in the process.

The Green challenge is to do so and still make humans happier than they are now in their current debt-ridden resource-guzzling form of existence.

So, maybe not steaks in the Green future, but still the ability to enjoy the smell of their sizzle.

Diverse Hope

Another way in which Greens differ with other technological optimists is in just who they think will provide us with the technological hope that we can successfully arrest global warming and all other forms of ecological destruction.

Greens differ in believing that the scientific 1% can't do it all alone.

By the 'scientific 1%' I mean today's elite scientists, mostly all male, white, upper class scientists from the biggest wealthiest nations, all holding prestigious tenure positions at the world's biggest and wealthiest research centres.

The ninety and the nine also want into that scientific fold.

We need history's biggest of Big Tents, the Cabinet with truly all the Talents, we need everybody's eyes, ears and minds at work here - suggesting, critiquing, examining, creating.

Again, I insist that a true Green can be detected if they consistently argue that a concern for diversity in Nature must always be matched by a concern for diversity in Humanity : that the two flow naturally together.

This is what Henry Dawson insisted and so too do I....

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