I have a few:
First, no one, not everybody on earth giving up the use of all energy can save the Earth. Regardless of what we do, the Earth is doomed. The Earth will perish one of 3 ways, it will become like Venus. A lifeless caustic super heated desert. Or it will be swallowed up by the Sun when it hits it's red giant phase, or it will be jarred loose or burnt up when the Andromeda galaxy collides with the Milky Way. So nobody can 'save' the Earth, it's doom was written into the cards a long time ago.
So I am not going to question the science nor the subsequent contrived panic. This is not an opinion about global warming. It's simple solutions that have actually been available for a long time. I think all of us can agree we do not want to live in a dirty world and breath nasty air, so we need to concentrate on solutions. Solutions that have existed for a half century or more. We don't need a big summit to figure that out.
First and foremost, if the worst polluters on Earth, China, Russia, Iran, Central America, and the 3rd world countries that Europe exported their pollution producing industries to do not participate and make a concerted effort to reduce their emissions, simply reducing ours even more amounts to less than a drop in the bucket and is hence a waste of time. So unless these other nations participate, we might as well just hold our course. Why suffer the economic impact if it's not going to have any effect? That's just stupid. So first, we need commitments from other nations who pollute a lot, to commit to change or we are wasting our time.
Second, leave the automobile industry alone. They are already ahead of the game having implemented cafe standards set for 2020, by 2016. They nearly killed the industry before with pollution control rules which cost billions of dollars and cost thousands of people their jobs. The auto industry has finally rebounded, it only took 30 years. Leave them and us alone. When they tighten the screws on the auto industry it hurts all of us. Leave them be, we don't want shitty cares that cost thousands more because of even more government intervention. It's been tapped to death, it's not a bottomless pit, the industry can be regulated out of business.
Now for solutions. We need energy and people talk about one power source vs. another but their thoughts are antiquated. Of all the solutions available, we should use all of them, not one over another. They can all be used together and result in near zero emissions and all the electricity we can want. We just need to change the way we think about energy.
First, all the coal fired plants should be replaced with nuclear plants. This was the plan, but the environmentalists in the late 70's had a fucking fit and the nuclear power initiative was quashed and many plans for power plants were squashed. Do you hate to see the big stacks of pollution coming from coal fired plants? Thank the left and Jimmy Carter for killing them off. We would be totally off of coal by now had the environmental nazis of the late '70's and early '80's had been shoved to the side. Now that finally most people agree, there should not be a single coal fired plant in 10 years. Nuclear power should be replacing all of them by 2026.
Next, we need to reduce reliance on the grid. There is no reason that new houses and even older houses cannot be retrofitted with a combination green energy and natural gas powered generators as the backup. The grid is inefficient. The losses in the transfer of energy is needless. I am not say remove the grid, but we can reduce the reliance on it a great deal.
Houses and businesses should be built, for instance, with a combination of solar panels and a natural gas generator. There is no reason for this solution to be affordable, the technology has been around for decades. Of course solar is limited to where sunlight is abundant, so it won't work everywhere, but it will work in a lot of places. Most dwellings with such a setup shouldn't need a drop of energy from the grid most of the time. And also, solar panel technology does need to take a step forward. And where sun is not abundant but wind is, wind turbines can be used in conjunction with a natural gas generator, not on a grid, but a per dwelling basis.
Now I agree solar needs to take a step forward, the capture method has not improved that much since it's inception, the technology is there to capture more sun energy per square inch and a manufacturing process that is less caustic. It has simply not been a priority to make solar panels more efficient, but now is the time to implement newer technology.
On grid central power stations can be use multiples of methods and are 'green' and cost effective. The afore mentioned increase in nuclear power is one. Geothermal can be used with great efficacy in places where the Earth's crust is thin. Hawai'i and the north west could be powered completely by geothermal plants. Refuse powered plants. Refuse is an abundant source of methanol which can be used to run steam generators. And as full of shit as Americans are, we'd have no shortage of refuse. Also, there are abundant caches of methanol stored in Alaska. Rather then just letting it evaporate in to the atmosphere, it can be tapped to run power plants. These are just some solutions to having more than enough electricity generated to power our nation. It would not be difficult to move to near zero emissions electric power in this country.
In terms of conservation. Public lighting, for instance, requires a lot of electricity to run day in and day out. We are so surrounded by it that we barely notice its there. But we can reduce the amount of energy required simply by replacing public lighting with LED powered lights which use a fraction of the energy that a light bulb requires. As lights need to be replaced, we simply replace them with LEDs.
I lied, I am going to talk about cars for a minute. During the Bush Administration he made a big push towards ethanol fuels. This was a move he was highly criticized for, why is beyond me. The emissions from ethanol are far less than gasoline and the internal combustion engine runs just fine on it. In fact, despite the fact that ethanol has less energy per unit it turns out that internal combustion engines designed to run on ethanol produce more horsepower then those running strait gas. The only downside is fuel economy goes down, but it still produces far less environmentally unfriendly emissions. So without having to make drastic lifestyle changes, or the unsatisfactory experience of driving electric, we can drive our internal combustion engines, produce more horsepower, produce less emissions and cars and drivers enjoy the happy relationship they have had for many decades. It's a wonderful solution that should satisfy both sides of the aisle. Fewer emissions, more power, more demand for cash crops and internal combustion; that's a win win win win.
As ethanol production becomes more and more efficient, there should be no reason we cannot gradually use ethanol more and more in our cars, reduce emissions and keep the auto industry fresh and enjoyable for many decades to come. Eventually we can give Saudi Arabia the finger and tell them to stick their oil right up their wahhabi loving asses. They can still beat their women and suck on a falafel, they will just be poor while they do it. Hell, telling the ME to go fuck themselves is worth doing it.