Tag Archives: Energy

Myths and mischief-making in renewable energy reporting

I couldn’t have claimed to be Ireland’s greatest fan of wind energy. Not because I don’t think it’s a good idea – it is – but rather, my concern is whether it will ever be deployed on a scale sufficient … Continue reading

Posted in Energy, Global Warming, Irish Focus, Sceptics, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , | 7 Comments

Fukushima a godsend for anti-nuclear bandwagon

I’ve been following the unfolding nuclear “crisis” in Japan with growing alarm. People who call themselves environmentalists have been jumping up and down with thinly disguised glee, pointing and waving and saying: “there, we warned you, nuclear is GONNA KILL … Continue reading

Posted in Energy, Global Warming, Nuclear, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , , , | 49 Comments

Transforming the system: Is eco-innovation enough?

The challenge of the 21st century is to align our political, economic, social and technological systems with the science of sustainability and the reality of resource limits, while maintaining wellbeing for citizens. In 2011, we are facing the decade of … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Global Warming, Irish Focus, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

Energy constraints will collapse global economic recovery

We may rail against the regulators, politicians, and others who failed to understand and manage past  risks, but we are just as culpable for our  failure to engage with severe, well-signposted, imminent ones. Impassioned arguments over bank nationalisation, the austerity-stimulus … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Energy, Global Warming, Peak Oil, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , , | 15 Comments

Next stop: make up our mind time

In the last post Paddy Morris noted that we need a vision and implementation strategy along the lines of the Marshall Plan to shield us from the worst of the energy and climate crises. He’s right. Avoiding oil consumption and … Continue reading

Posted in Global Warming, Irish Focus | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Peak oil – what happens next?

Wednesday night last saw an interesting session to kick off several days of the 15th Convergence Sustainable Living Festival, organised by Cultivate. The two-hour session was entitled: ‘Planning our retreat from fossil fuels: exploring the ramifications of Peak Oil’ and … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Global Warming, Peak Oil, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Can industrial civilisation and the biosphere both be saved?

Even when you don’t agree with him, Monbiot remains essential reading. Whether you regard the Dark Mountain Project as a bunch of  dystopian doomers, or simply realists probably depends on how you feel about peak oil (in the shorter term) … Continue reading

Posted in Biodiversity, Global Warming, Peak Oil, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Argument versus Proselytising: Developing and defending a rational debate on energy and survival.

The debate on climate change faces a number of inherent handicaps. Human nature is perhaps the most important. At our best, we deal reasonably well with the present and the immediate future. If next Christmas seems remote, our abilities to … Continue reading

Posted in Energy, Global Warming, Peak Oil, Sceptics, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Ireland among most vulnerable to peak oil

HERE’S A conundrum: restarting global economic growth will, by definition, push up energy costs. Rising energy costs will in turn choke off that economic recovery, leading to a fall in energy prices. Try to restart growth again, and the brick … Continue reading

Posted in Energy, Global Warming, Irish Focus, Peak Oil, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Attack on climate science has its OJ Simpson moment

Bill McKibben has been at the forefront of efforts to alert the public to the dangers of climate change for more than two decades. Today he fronts 350.org, a website dedicated to setting a global CO2 ceiling of 350ppm. Below, … Continue reading

Posted in Global Warming, Media, Sceptics | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Do you believe in miracles?

Bill Gates is for many the Dr Evil of the corporate world. His Microsoft behemoth has had a stranglehold on the world’s personal computer market for the last two decades, and wrung hundreds of billions out of users in the … Continue reading

Posted in Energy, Global Warming, Nuclear, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

21st Century Swords to Plowshares: From Megatons to Megawatts

Currently, hydropower provides 6% of the USA’s electrical power, and solar, biomass, wind and geothermal combined provide 3%. Dismantled nuclear weapons provide 10%. The ‘Megatons to Megawatts’ programme was instituted in the 1990s as a means to secure the weapons … Continue reading

Posted in Energy, Nuclear, Peak Oil | Tagged , , , | 7 Comments

To the last drop?

Take a minute or two to study the chart below. It is just issued by the International Energy Agency, an industry-centric organisation not prone to engaging in eco-alarmism. But this is alarming, truly shocking in fact. The dark blue chart … Continue reading

Posted in Energy, Global Warming, Irish Focus, Nuclear, Peak Oil, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , , | 31 Comments

There (still) is no plan B

One of my earliest posts on this blog, on December 12, 2007, was headed ‘There is no Plan B‘. The headline was taken from a quote from the then new Australian PM, Kevin Rudd to delegates at the UN climate … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Global Warming, Irish Focus, Media, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Challenging the infallible economist

Colm McCarthy chaired the Special Group on Public Service Numbers and Expenditure Programmes, better known as An Bord Snip Nua. It issued its various prescription for what ails us in July, and much of the national discussion since then has … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Global Warming, Irish Focus, Media, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments