There are many ways to reduce need for fossil fuels. The more renewable energy we the people use, the less fossil fuels we will need. I wonder what would happen if every one who can, gets a windmill or a solar panel to produce electricity for our homes?
There are a lot of things we can all do to reduce the use of fossil fuels. Here is one plan of action.
Renewables Are a Reality: How We Can Ditch Fossil Fuels Without Any Help From CongressAmory Lovins explains his plan for transforming our energy, transportation and industry sectors while at the same time growing our economy and cutting dirty fossil fuels.February 20, 2012 |Amory B. Lovins is fond of referring to the Rocky Mountain Institute, where he serves as chairman and chief scientist, as a “think and do” tank, and it’s clear that to Lovins the doing is every bit as important as the thinking. Hardly lacking in confidence or ambition, Lovins — in conjunction with his colleagues at the institute — has published Reinventing Fire, his step-by-step blueprint for how to transition to a renewable energy economy by mid-century.
Impressive in both its scope and detail — Lovins discusses everything from how to redesign heavy trucks to make them more fuel efficient to ways to change factory pipes to conserve energy — the book lays out a plan for the U.S. to achieve the following by 2050: cars completely powered by hydrogen fuel cells, electricity, and biofuels; 84 percent of trucks and airplanes running on biomass fuels; 80 percent of the nation’s electricity produced by renewable power; $5 trillion in savings; and an economy that has grown by 158 percent.
In an interview with Yale Environment 360 senior editor Fen Montaigne, Lovins discusses how business and society can pull off this transformation even if the U.S. Congress keeps failing to act, why climate change need not even enter the discussion, and why the oil industry will ultimately forego fossil fuels and jump aboard the green bandwagon. “One system is dying and others are struggling to be born,” says Lovins. “It’s a very exciting time.”
Fen Montaigne: Given that we’re in the midst of what could only be described as a fossil fuel boom, with the discovery of new unconventional sources and new oil sources being found all over the world, how do you speed this transition and get from here to there?
Amory Lovins: Well, I’m not sure what boom you’re talking about. When I read the Wall Street Journal, I see a headline a few weeks ago about coal running out of steam.
Montaigne: China is consuming tremendous amounts of coal.
Lovins: Hang on — I look at the data and I find that in the United States, coal’s share of the electrical services market, which is 95 percent of its market for fuel, has fallen by a quarter from 2005 through 2010, displaced by cheaper gas, efficiency, and renewables. And then when you look in the forward prices and the options market, that spread is going to keep widening. And when I hear how cheap natural gas is, I remember that it’s also very volatile. This has nothing to do with the many uncertainties around fracking, which will take a decade to resolve — if they work out well, we’ll be satisfied with a new option; if they don’t, that’s okay because we won’t need that much gas, so we won’t be very disappointed.
Montaigne: Certainly in China, India, and the developing world there is a fossil fuel boom going on.
Lovins: But in a global context, there is a remarkable boom in efficiency and renewables in China, the world leader in five renewables. Part of the story in China is that the extraordinary vitality of renewables is coming very largely from the vibrant private sector, while all of the nuclear and half the coal business are the old state enterprises. So the story of incumbents and insurgents is partly the story of the reshaping of the Chinese economy from the old and rather bureaucratic command organizations. That is, I think, an encouraging trend.
Last I looked a couple of years ago, the private sector in China was something like 50 to 70 percent of the profits, the growth, and the new jobs. Of course there is still a lot of momentum in the coal bureaucracy in China and India, which together burned half the world’s coal and account for about three-quarters of the projected increase, but I think those projections are looking quite dubious. In China, for example, they have lately retired over 70 gigawatts of inefficient coal plants, so that their coal plant fleet is now more efficient than ours. In 2010, 59 percent of their net new [electricity] capacity was coal. It used to be much higher.
There is a lot more, the whole post is worth the time. Click here.
Every little bit, every one of us can do, will help us fight against using fossil fuels and help to save our Planet. What can you do?