It’s the birthday of Charles Darwin, whose discovery of biological evolution ranks in the top couple of moments in human history when a longstanding paradigm was turned on its head.
Thus perhaps it’s a good moment to speculate: which one’s next to go? The problem, of course, is that’s a completely unanswerable question, by the very definition of the term “paradigm.” In many ways they are searchlights that serve to focus our research onto areas that seem most promising, yet in other ways they are blinders, actively prohibiting us from seeing anything else. Read more ›
A reader asked me to comment on this breakthrough in Germany re: nuclear fusion. In particular, “Can you speak to its safety?”
Thanks. This is very similar to what my friends at TriAlpha are doing here in California. In fact, from the article it’s hard to know who’s further ahead, especially since all this work is so clandestine. Read more ›
I had the misfortune of attending a lecture at the University of California at Santa Barbara yesterday, in response I wrote this to the director of the Institute on Energy Efficiency, the sponsoring organization. I happen to know Dr. Bowers personally, so this wasn’t an easy letter to send.
Dr. Bowers: Read more ›
Plumbing isn’t something a lot of homeowners like to think about that often. The only time they tend to worry about it is when a serious malfunction requires hiring a plumber. However, your plumbing can affect a lot more than your ability to use water in your home. It can also affect your overall energy bills. Below are four ways your plumbing can affect your home’s energy efficiency.
1. An Inefficient Water Heater Read more ›
A reader comments on my post “Humankind Is Slowly Evolving in the Direction of Eco-Consciousness,” If your concern is about consumerism in general, I think you’re fighting a losing battle. Consumer economics are as old as civilization, and could even be defined as the basis of civilization. Producing a vast variety of mostly unnecessary products is fundamental to human economics…..That’s just who we are as a species.
We’ll see, my friend. It seems quite possible that something like the following will take place: Read more ›
People like to think of renewable energy as something new that needs to fight for its place in human society. That is nonsense. One of the oldest examples of implementing renewable energy can be traced all the way back to 200 BC when we could already find windmills pumping water in Ancient China. So, if there is anything new and intrusive here, that would be the fossil fuel. Read more ›
Those of us who watch an occasional “Nova” broadcast on PBS understand that beavers have a salubrious effect on any environment they inhabit. One of the many reasons this is true is that the activities of beavers, i.e., building dams, contribute to the health of long grasses, and fungi (“mycorrhizal fungi” as it turns out) that grows on their roots, which are incredibly effective in sequestering atmospheric carbon dioxide into the earth beneath us.
If we had a mascot here at 2GreenEnergy, it would most assuredly be the industrious fellow pictured above. Not only are they effective, but they’re adorable as well.
When I noticed this can of “Barbisol” in my son’s bathrom, I felt compelled to write the post pictured here for the 2GreenEnergy Instagram feed.
A reader commented that we tend to act is if someone else will deal with our problems, and went on to lament. “I don’t understand why we act this way.”
I believe the most plausible explanation is the fact that we (especially Americans) are heavily programmed to consume. The typical American experiences more than 3000 images and messages each day, all reminding us that we’re lesser persons if we do not buy things. Few of us take the time, or even have the courage, to ask ourselves if we really need an item, and what will be the environmental consequences of consuming that item. You are absolutely right when you say we make it somebody else’s problem.
Note also that this is a deeply ingrained part of our behavior as a people. It’s not some surface level fad that is important today but gone next week. We will get there, but we need to expect many decades to unfold before the masses begin to view the world as environmental conservatives.
One of the more radical civil rights leaders of the 1960s was not at all happy with the progress that African Americans were making at the time, with their sit-ins to force “white people only” diners to allow blacks to enter as well. In an impassioned speech he fairly screamed, “I do not consider an integrated cup of coffee adequate compensation for the 350 years during which whites enslaved blacks and used our people’s labor, under the lash, to build the wealthiest nation in the history of mankind.” Read more ›
I just got back to the office from an appointment down in nearby Santa Barbara, which enabled me to take a run on the beach (pictured). To my surprise and delight, there was a camera crew there from a local television station, and the head dude asked my opinion on the weather, i.e., am I disappointed that we didn’t get the rain that was predicted? Am I concerned that it’s 88 degrees in early February (when the average high is 65)? Read more ›