Archive for the 'Renewable Energy' Category

Belief and Knowledge and Humans and Nature:

Wednesday, July 18th, 2012

Belief and Knowledge and Humans and Nature:

I am starting this entry from a previous blog, Rhetoric Again – Cycles. I got some interesting comments as well as a couple of letters for that entry. To set the tone, here is a thought from the end of that blog.

There is little doubt that humans are the dominant life form on the planet today. We shape every ecosystem. We consume all forms of energy. Throughout time, plants and animals have determined and altered the environment. Today we humans change our environment, the atmosphere and ocean. Not only are we a dominant life form, we have this amazing ability to extract rocks and liquids and gases from the Earth and to burn them. We have the ability to push land around, to remove mountains, to build islands, and to manufacture concrete. We are, therefore, not only biological, we are geological.

We humans are a force of nature – while yet a part of nature. Because we have the ability to remember, to reason, to develop and to accumulate knowledge, unlike other parts of the natural world, we have the ability to make decisions that influence the future of our environment. Therefore, our role in nature, in the natural world, is unique. To be clear, that uniqueness is not in our ability to change the environment, but in our ability to understand the consequences of those changes and the ability to anticipate and influence the future.


A Healthy Way to Travel

Monday, August 24th, 2009

The use of the automobile for personal transportation brings considerable benefits to individuals, such as the ability to travel quickly, easily and independently over long distances. However, car travel also contributes to health problems and societal threats such as physical inactivity, obesity, air pollution, climate change, habitat degradation, oil dependence, political instability, and economic insecurity.

These problems are particularly pronounced in the USA, which currently consumes roughly 27% of global oil production and produces approximately 25% of global carbon emissions, and where roughly 65% of adults are overweight or obese. Other countries throughout the world that replicate or hope to replicate the automobile-based lifestyle of the USA face similar problems now or in the near future.


Are clean fuels finally coming of age?

Tuesday, March 20th, 2007

Daniel Kammen
Class of 1935 Distinguished Professor of Energy
Energy and Resources Group, Goldman School of Public Policy
Co-Director, Berkeley Institute of the Environment
Editor-in-Chief, Environmental Research Letters
University of California
Berkeley, CA 94720-3050
URL: &
Date: March 20, 2007

The year 2007 may well go down in history as the year we finally began to seriously act collectively to address global warming. I say ‘collectively’ intentionally, and for a specific reason. We have already seen a number of nations – the entire European Union, all of Scandinavia, Japan, and a significant number of individual states in the United States – all commit to varying degrees to climate legislation and targets that could, if they become universal – finally put us on a path to address global warming. These efforts are each significant, and include such key goals as those in Sweden, that aims for an oil free economy by 2020, to the Global Warming Solutions Act in California that aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the entire state economy by 25% over the next two decades. (more…)