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Re: [carfree_cities] The Book

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  • J.H. Crawford
    ... We can t say with any certainty yet. Maybe we ll have so little energy that we ll be forced to abandon all mechanized transport and rely solely on bikes,
    Message 1 of 4 , Nov 2, 2000
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      Ron Greek said:

      >How is sufficient food production and distribution assured
      >once fossil-fueled machines burn their last drop of fuel?

      We can't say with any certainty yet. Maybe we'll have
      so little energy that we'll be forced to abandon all
      mechanized transport and rely solely on bikes, horses,
      and sailing ships. However, I'm cautiously optimistic
      about renewable energy. Remember that Switzerland and
      Norway are largely powered by hydroelectric plants.
      If they abandoned car use and made very efficient use
      of all energy, they would probably be more or less
      self-sufficient in energy. Windy places like the
      Netherlands will be able to generate a lot of electricity
      using windmills. (Greenpeace has proposed to generate
      1/3 of our electricity by building a wind farm in
      the North Sea, out of everybody's way and right in
      the middle of those strong North Sea winds.)
      Desert areas can use solar power to good effect.

      What we SHOULD be doing is using the last of the
      non-renewable energy to build a sustainable energy
      infrastructure. Instead, we're burning it in SUVs.

      I think that agriculture will indeed be one of the
      difficult problems. Modern techniques are highly
      intensive in their use of petroleum for fuel, fertilizer,
      and chemicals. I am not opposed to biotech and genetic
      manipulation as a way of increasing crop yields
      and reducing energy inputs. I'm just not confident
      that the current profit-driven economic structure
      likely to avert the many disasters that doubtless
      lurk between here and sustainable agriculture.
      (Anybody for a bag of corn chips? Who's taking odds
      on the chance that the FDA will fail to approve
      the corn in question for human consumption after all?
      Hey, it would probably not even kill as many people
      as the exploding Pinto gas tanks, and the money at
      stake is probably just as great.) I wish I had more
      faith in the ability of governments to apply effective
      regulation to profit-driven corporations.



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      J.H. Crawford Carfree Cities
      postmaster@... Carfree.com
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