re: Chris Nelder – Real Solutions to the Energy and Climate Crises posted on Energy & Capital
Yes, the overweening influence of corporate lobbyists has effectively neutralized policy and confused the public debate on our most serious problems. Yes, the capitalistic system favors short-term concentrated profits over long-term public good. And yes, the simple human preference for happy talk over sad stories plays a role in our denial. The real problem is much more pervasive. Those actors cannot explain more fundamental questions:
Why has our economic theory failed us?
Why is the reality of climate change so hard to accept?
Why does climate change dominate public dialogue while the more proximate threat of peak oil remains far off the radar?
Why do we have such resistance to change?
Why would anyone ever think Dubai World was a good idea?
Why is talking about population control — arguably the only real way out of our predicament — taboo?
The issues you raise (12/11/09 “Energy and Capital”) are rather close to what I’ve used as conceptual levers for understanding the deeper problem for some time. The simple part of our cognitive difficulty is fairly easy to state and understand I think. Continue reading Real Solutions for “our change of life” crisis
posted to Nature.com-climate feedback and Dot Earth
Maybe this is a break in the log jam… in disguise, a real opportunity to ask the tough questions.
Take China’s promise to slow carbon release by decreasing its economic carbon intensity. The strange fact, that points to our need to deeply rethink how we’ve been trying to slow down ALL kinds of environmental impacts, is that reducing carbon intensity does not reduce carbon emissions. Continue reading China, reducing “carbon intensity”, not carbon emissions
List of short articles on main website: Concept and Comment. Here are some recent additions – Happy Thanksgiving 2009
John Rainbird responded today:
Hi Phil – it is a critical point you make. Efficiency has to be a core part of the response, but what is lacking are the other measures to prevent the rebound effect of increased efficiency on resource use. What are your thoughts on what these might be? John
Right, that’s the rub. We need to efficiently use the earth, but at the moment our efficiencies are being used to multiply our uses of the earth. Our most popular mental failing in that regard, though, is seeing the obvious “dumb question” that raises, and then not doing what you just did, asking it.
So… how do we get to the bottom of this? The basic dilemma seems to be how many ways we are using conceptual models, often build with cultural values instead of solid observations, to represent how the physical world works and are simply way off.
“New School of Thought Brings Energy to ‘the Dismal Science‘” October 23, 2009 (online Business page)
The NY Times seemed to break its silence on what some call “the physical world problem” in nicely covering the BioPhysical Economics meeting I presented to last week. They included mention of my presentation on the surprising problem that our main way of slowing down resource uses has and will continue to accelerate them.
It’s bound to be confusing… that the sustainability movement misunderstood the use of efficiency to decrease our energy and economic impacts, since it naturally has and will continue to multiplying them. See the links below for my presentation. Continue reading Why efficiency speeds up consumption – reported NY Times…
re: Dot Earth 10/22/09 on Keeping the Gas in the Pipeline
Ah yes Andy…If CO2 was “pink”, then we’d all SEE it. Good idea.
That’s something we might connect to one of the nice clear ways to clearly visualize it, imagining all the “pink gas” you’d need to “exhale” for each choice you make to consume fossil fuels. It’s a shocker, I warn you. This is actually very legitimate math. It’s based on the reality that most spending will naturally have about average embodied energy and carbon content. (see www.synapse9.com/design/dollarshadow.htm) Continue reading Dot Earth – What if CO2 was “pink”
Treating time as an everywhere local process is one of the clear links between Mark van der Erve’s “physics of auto-emergence” and my “physics of happening”
On 8/12 Steve replied: “Very clear..among your best.” regarding my reply to Nick:
For related concepts see the notes for Aleks Jakulin’s presentation on my work at the June 2011 Foo Camp “System archetypes & anarchetypes“
Nick, Ok, but by saying systems are a “standing wave” is to say they’re mechanically repetitive rather than recurrently creative. The systems of direct concern to people are most often repetitively creative, not mechancal. They’re not representable by equations at all, but are observably physical systems, locally evolving.
If what you understood by the way I described “local exploratory development” seems covered by “digital time” and entropy, then I’m explaining it badly.