I think you have good reasons to be pessimistic Fauch. It’s problematic that companies can get as much public support as they get while being very non-transparent. It’s also a problem that so many different types of companies that receive subventions and other forms of support, which means that support to green technology is neutralized.
Business interest organizations have a lot of bargaining power since immediate needs like saving the jobs and finances have a high priority among politicians: if the companies don’t get what they need the country’s economy will crash and the people will suffer today instead of in the future. Since it’s an impossible decision to make the economy crash, the support to unsustainable technologies and businesses continues.
You mentioned that “more regulation would be better.” I agree, regulating unsustainable technologies and economic activities would be a great support to green technologies. Sometimes it can probably be enough pressure on technology development if one of the big markets, the USA or the EU, can agree about a regulation, but it would be better if they make a common agreement. Currently the EU does many environmental friendly regulations, but they are often (always?) watered down compromises. It’s also possible that regulation is neutralized by other aspects of the international cooperation, when different ministries and government authorities have different aims and purposes.
It’s interesting what you said about debts and I see how it’s a bad thing both in general and as a threat to the financing of new technology. Maybe things can work out alright anyway, since there are winners and losers in this system. The debts aren’t too severe everywhere, and in those countries that are well off there could be room for investing in green technology.
I found some interesting information on the website of one of the most successful Swedish companies run by some of those “university environmentalist”. I’ve run the text through a translator and fixed the worst linguistic errors.
The most interesting part is that “peak fish oil” is coming in 2017, which means that there’s a lot of money to be made by cultivating algae. It won’t take much time until there are big algae industries and even if they’re starting as food industries since that’s most lucrative, the existence of these companies means that there will be a lot of well educated people interested in, and business money paying for, the development of algae based bio fuel!
Microalgae are among the earth's oldest life forms. Billions of years ago they began living on photosynthesis, i.e. using sunlight and carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and instead emit oxygen. Even today between 70 and 80 percent of the oxygen we breathe come from the algae in the oceans. The algae are thus the foundation for the life we see today.
The algae are also the base of the ocean food chain and form elements essential to life for all animals living in the oceans. For example, omega-3 fats in oily fish come from algae. These nutrients are very beneficial for us humans.
In the latter half of the 1900s there was a growing interest in seaweed cultivation on an industrial scale, initially just for food, to find solutions to the problem of supplying the earth rapidly growing population. With the oil crisis of the 70's began to expand research on algae as feedstock for renewable fuels to replace fossil crude oil.
In the past decade, interest in algae cultivation again brought to life, and technology development is now at breakneck speed. The algae are grown on land in open pools or high-tech closed-system to access the coveted algae oil and other important nutrients.
There are hundreds of thousands different types of algae, but only a fraction is explored and only a dozen species grown commercially today.
Cultivation of algae is very space efficient compared to land-based crops and can provide 22 times more oil per hectare than rapeseed (sic!) under Swedish climatic conditions. In addition, algae doesn’t demand valuable agricultural land needed for food production.
SAVE THE CLIMATE: REPLACE FOSSIL CRUDE OIL
Algae is nature's way of storing solar energy, and crude oil from algae is similar to the fossil crude oil. The advantage of algae cultivation for fuel production is that the raw materials in the form of carbon dioxide and nutrients can come from industrial discharges and waste streams. This will create both the loop for recycling, and get new energy in the form of liquid propellants.
Already, it has been driving cars, flying passenger aircraft and pushed heavy freighter. In a decade, algae can play an important role in future energy supply.
SAVE THE RAINFOREST: REPLACE PALM OIL
Palm oil, a very common vegetable fats found in foods, soaps and skin care products, is one of the greatest environmental tragedies. In order to build palm plantations tropical rainforests are devastated, leading to the emission of greenhouse gases and destroyed habitats for both plants and animals. Palm oil is not even particularly useful, because of its high levels of saturated fat.
Several of the global big business that consumes millions of tonnes of palm oil a year are now investing significant resources in research and development of algae cultivation. Healthy and environmentally friendly algal oil may in the future replace the unsustainable and unhealthy palm oil in the food and consumer products.
SAVE THE SEAS: REPLACE FISH OIL
Fish oil is a highly sought after commodity because of its content of essential omega-3 fats. The growing demand is increasingly causing problems, with large-scale trawling is causing the depletion and destruction of marine habitats. Within the industry, it is estimated "peak fish oil" comes in 2017, when the fish oil will no longer suffice to meet the growing multi-billion dollar market.
The omega-3 fats found in fish oil comes in fact from algae, which the fish take in through their food. By cultivating these algae and extracting the oil directly from them instead, you get a completely plant-based material containing exactly the same beneficial omega-3 fats in fish oil. You also avoid the toxins found in oily fish.
Locksley said:- If it's so, isn't recycling a solution? It's already possible to recycle or extract energy from almost all waste. Some countries are very good at it, for example Sweden, which manages to take care of everything that's collected except for one percent in one way or another. Much of that 1 % consists of ceramics, porcelain and window glass.
Is sustainable development possible with recycling and green technology?
i would say so, as long as overpopulation doesn't become a further issue. germany, for example, wastes very little, and recycles much more than the u.s. it's a beautiful country; very clean, with very clean air. i have mentioned before in this forum, how the rest of the world could learn a lesson or two, from the germans. i'm happy to hear that there are other countries doing the same.
Good to hear that about Germany!
Here's an interesting and fun 10 min lecture about overpopulation and sustainable development
Quote:Sometimes it can probably be enough pressure on technology development if one of the big markets, the USA or the EU, can agree about a regulation, but it would be better if they make a common agreement.
USA and EU seem to agree mostly about deregulations
Fauch said:USA and EU seem to agree mostly about deregulations
They should be careful when designing coming free trade agreement TTIP, especially – but not only - because the American food production is even worse than the European. Let’s hope that consumers spend their money where it does least harm if the agreement turns out to be bad
This weekend I was in Stockholm where I among other things happened to visit a gallery with an exhibition called POWER OF ELDERS – VALUE CHANGE FOR SURVIVAL, which was about the yearly gathering Circle of Elders and Youth, where leaders from all Native American nations discuss traditions, social problems and especially environmental problems.
It was really interesting to learn how Native Americans understand global warming and how the problems can be solved from a traditional point of view. Earth has not only an economic value, it has a value of its own that has to be respected. We come from Mother Earth, and extracting so many resources that Mother Earth is hurt is disrespectful. The Elders also find that stupid and dangerous, as the life style where their traditional wisdom comes from is about being a part of the natural system.
“Let’s talk about sustainability, rather than just babble”
An important part of the exhibition was a collection of quotes from respected leaders between 30 and 100 years old (circle of elders and youth). The 100 year old said the things our scientists and politicians have begun saying in the last few decades… In general the older people talked about much about balance & imbalance while the modern younger people talked about green technology and recycling as ways of respecting traditions.
The discussion is also very much about justice. As always, the Native Americans still find themselves being pushed around as soon as there is anything of economic value in the reservations or sacred places. A new thing I heard this weekend is that they own only the top 2 meters of the reservation ground, which means that nearby companies use up their ground water for agriculture and even to flush out minerals and fossil fuels from beneath their land.
There’s a great interest among Native Americans to take up semi-forbidden languages and traditions that risk to become forgotten. The traditions become meaning and an “escape” from life in poverty and discrimination. Seeking traditional wisdom is now becoming an even more popular movement when it’s seen as a solution to both global warming and local problems.
The exhibition doesn’t change the world, but it was a well done presentation of how nations unite around what they have in common, despite being scattered across a continent, to use their knowledge to become relevant in the modern world where extracting resources harms both people and environment. They don’t have the technological solution to the problems but the discussion may contribute to a value change, which may make a sustainable society more likely.
respect of "mother" earth isn't one of our values anymore. now the only solutions we can see to fix the damage done by the exploitation of earth, is to keep exploiting it, but in a different way... or with a different goal.
I don't get the people who want us to stop exploiting nature. What's the point of opposing the well-being of humans for the preserveration of trees and rocks?
Over himself, over his own
mind, the individual is
- John Stuart Mill
i'm not even going to dignify that with a real answer.
actually, yes i will. question, xerox: how is that you can claim that your sexuality should have the same rights as anyone else, yet be so completely selfish when it comes to the environment that actually gives you life? are you really that foolish?
fred79 said:question, xerox: how is that you can claim that your sexuality should have the same rights as anyone else, yet be so completely selfish when it comes to the environment that actually gives you life?
i think i already discovered my answer. you're just selfish, you don't give a rat's ass about equality, when it comes to your sexual preference getting equal treatment.
your statement about the earth and how people should treat it speaks for itself:
xerox said:I don't get the people who want us to stop exploiting nature. What's the point of opposing the well-being of humans for the preserveration of trees and rocks?
i can no longer take you seriously. your rationality is flawed beyond reason.
My BS sensor is tingling again
posted June 22, 2014 08:05 PM
xerox said:It's selfish to prioritize the well-being of humans over that which has no free will?
The well-being of humans depends on the future of the eco system. You sound like you have zero information on global warming.
I really don't understand how this issue is usually handled by two groups, one group screaming "we are all gonna die!" and the others going "everything is sweet and dandy, keep pumping the CO, so that we can keep our arrow headed upwards on some BS economical graph sheet."
meh, i tried watching it. too much speculation for me. it seemed like more entertainment value than anything actually informative.
maybe dullards might get something out of it, though.
it's too bad, because they have a hell of a platform to teach with.
however, even IF the masses watched a show, i doubt they would take anything from it but entertainment value. when it was done, they would just change the channel, and watch something made by tyler perry afterward. just like all of the people who go to see apocalyptic movies, and come out critiquing the movie, or discussing it's impact, instead of using it's message to change their ACTUAL DAILY LIVES.
My BS sensor is tingling again
posted June 22, 2014 08:26 PM
The new Cosmos is not as well-written as the old one, and sometimes it really skips things too fast. But that's completely beside the point. There ARE people who calmly analyze the issue of global warming instead of shouting doomsday, they ARE heard and they DO have a platform to stand on.
and what sort of impact are those people making on the corporations at large, or the masses who want gas for their cars, food for all of their children, room for their houses and families to grow, etc?
by the time the human race pulls it's collective head out of it's ass, it'll be too late. that's what my money is on, anyway. prove me wrong. i'd love to be able to believe differently, i really would, artu.