[FoRK] Suburbia

Eugen Leitl eugen at leitl.org
Sun Jan 9 01:59:12 PST 2005

On Sat, Jan 08, 2005 at 06:10:06PM -0800, Adam L Beberg wrote:

> "The whole post-war American way of life ended up being centred on the 
> suburb; the nice house with a nice lawn and the picket fence; a nice car 
> in the drive.

Actually the suburbs are about the only places where there's enough insolated
surface/inhabitant to come to self-reliance, of the urban areas.
> Greene believes the world is entering the beginning of the end of the 
> age of oil, a phase that will affect every aspect of human existance.

It all depends on whether the markets will panic, or whether it will be a
smooth price increase.
> "People who have bought into that American dream of an ever-growing 
> lifestyle with ever cheaper goods and services, are going to be the most 
> affected by the changes that are coming."

I agree, burning fossils for energy is a disgrace. So, let's don't.
> "After all, every time you even see a Hollywood science fiction movie, 
> say AI or I-Robot, the futures predicted are always energy rich. It 
> takes some foresight for people to actually start planning now, for a 
> future in which we all may be energy poor."

Ridiculous. Even with strictly terrestrial PV there's more than enough for
> Tar sands

Coal, gas, and renewables.
> Greene is going to cover a variety of areas in the new documentary, 
> including recoverable oil from so-called tar sands.

Stupid idea.
> Not content with this level of global travel Greene has then lined up 
> Iceland as his next stop.
> "Because it has one of the world's oldest alternative energy economies 
> with its use of thermal energy. But also because there have been people 

Well, duh, with giant thermal gradients it's easy enough. Elsewhere
it's kinda expensive.

> trying to kick-start the hydrogen economy there. It is important to see 

Easiest way to kickstart hydrogen economy is using natural gas reforming, and
grow from there.

> what they have achieved and what their plans are for the future."
> Hydrogen sceptics
> But even among those people who think oil is starting its decline there 
> is scepticism over these alternatives. Hydrogen especially is often 
> derided as pie-in-the-sky thinking, too energy-expensive to produce on 
> any meaningful level.

Obviously, these people have been flunking their science lessons.
> "That is true. Even people who talk about things like peak oil are often 
> sceptics about other forms of energy. We are not so concerned with that. 
> We want to see the people who are actually making attempts."
> Greene says his new film will not just be about technical energy 
> questions, it will be about the people who are trying to address them.
> "These are people who are anticipating massive social changes based on 
> energy becoming much more expensive. That is what we are going to look 
> at. Their futures, our futures, could be vastly different depending on 
> the success or failure of their projects. Very different indeed."

Any projections based on *energy* scarcity are a complete waste of recycled

Eugen* Leitl <a href="http://leitl.org">leitl</a>
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