Monday, December 10, 2007

The Central Organizing Principle

Just last week, there was talk in Europe of creating a super grid and connecting lots of wind energy from many continents. Here's another indication of the commitments that are forming to reduce carbon emissions.

Wind farms to power every home in Britain
The Telegraph

Every household in Britain could be powered by off-shore wind farms under major expansion plans being announced by the Government.

Up to 7,000 huge turbines could be installed around the UK's coastline in a bid to boost the wind energy produced 30-fold by 2020. Business Secretary John Hutton admitted the "step change" would alter the face of the waters around the country. But he insisted that tough choices had to made made to effect the shift to low carbon power sources.

Speaking on BBC1's Politics Show, Mr Hutton said: "There is the potential, we believe, out there, using the resources that there are around the UK to generate maybe all of the electricity that households need... from offshore wind sources."

"We should see whether we can maximise that potential because it's obviously in the nation's interest, in the world's interest for us to make sure that more of our energy comes from clean sources."

Currently just 2 per cent of our power comes from renewables, and wind is the source for less than 1 gigawatt.

By 2020 the Government hopes that it could provide around 34 gigawatts - which using current technology would mean introducing some 7,000 turbines.

Asked whether having a wind installation every half-mile around the coast was acceptable, Mr Hutton replied: "It is going to change our coastline, yes for sure.

"There's no way of making the shift to low carbon technology without making a change and that change being visible to people."

Mr Hutton is due formally to announce the "next stage" in the expansion of offshore wind power at a conference in Berlin. (clip)

Greenpeace executive director John Sauven said the proposals amounted to a "wind energy revolution".

"If we are finally to exploit the massive energy resources we have available to us on this windy island, there will now need to be a revolution in thinking in Whitehall, where the energy dinosaurs have prevailed for too long," he said. (clip)

Friends of the Earth renewable energy campaigner Nick Rau said the news was a "extremely welcome". "The potential power that could be generated by this industry is enormous.

"Making Britain a world leader in this form of energy will create jobs, boost the economy and help put Britain at the forefront in the battle to combat climate change."

Speaking of climate change, Al Gore got his prize today:

Nobel winner Gore: "Make peace with the planet"

"Without realising it, we have begun to wage war on the earth itself," Gore said in the prepared text of his speech. "It is time to make peace with the planet.""The very web of life on which we depend is being ripped and frayed," Gore said at Oslo's City Hall.

"The earth has a fever," he said, adding that the world every day pumps 70 million tonnes of global-warming pollution -- above all, carbon dioxide -- into the atmosphere.

Instead of a "nuclear winter" warned of by scientists a few decades ago, the planet now faces a "carbon summer", he said.

Gore, who lost the presidential election to George W. Bush in 2000, said earlier generations had the courage to save civilisation when leaders found the right words in the 11th hour. "Once again it is the 11th hour," he said.

"We must quickly mobilise our civilisation with the urgency and resolve that has previously been seen only when nations mobilised for war," he said, crediting the generation that defeated fascism around the world in the 1940s.

Gore said he was deeply moved to be the second man from the tiny town of Carthage, Tennessee, to win the peace prize. The first was U.S. Secretary of State Cordell Hull who got it in 1945 for his role fostering the United Nations.

He said saving the global environment must become "the central organising principle of the world community"."

At the moment, I think its safe to say that the

"central organising principle "

is money.

And when it comes to your

"money or your life",

a lot of folks out there

just aren't that sure.


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Anonymous Anonymous said...

When it comes to your money or your life I think the organizing principle is fear of life without money. Judging from the pitiful street corner beggers, that is convincing proof of that syllogism at work.
A woman next to me in line at the Social Security office told me that she personally knew of 40 people who died prematurely due to being homeless.

8:04 AM  
Blogger oZ said...

well said FM, thanks.

8:57 AM  

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