Words into action - a wind/solar energy module

After reporting on the potential hazards of ingenuity since 1990, the progress trap project began focusing on solutions. Solar energy was an obvious topic, as was wind energy.

"A powerful analysis of our situation"

This book shows how societies and individuals can have too much of a good thing, often unconscious of the effects of ingenuity on their environment. When changes are man-made and harmful, a downward spiral begins: development that excludes solutions to problems that arise from development.

People who don't believe in climate change?

"You won't find them on the fireline in the American West anymore," said a Federal chief of fire operations, interviewed by CBS News*. Nineteen firefighters lost their lives fighting the fire near Yarnell, Arizona on June 30, 2013.
 
In a remarkable exchange, Scott Pelley of CBS News interviewed Tom Boatner - Federal chief of fire operations in the American West. Rarely does the mainstream media raise the issue of climate change when disaster strikes.

Pentagon accepts climate change

solar tentFrom PBS: An operators' manual helps keep your car or computer running at peak performance. Earth science can do the same for the planet. Join host Richard Alley – registered Republican, geologist, former oil company employee and expert on climate change and renewable energy — on a high-definition trip around the globe to learn the story of Earth's climate history and our relationship with fossil fuels.

10. Excuses, excuses.

Summary: We humans are very adept at creating systems, institutions and cultures which insulate and isolate from our surroundings. While learning is one of our species' special skills, under certain circumstances it fails. A progress trap is one of them. Innovation has unpredictable results that often defy solutions. Science creates unknown factors: pollution and disease, climate instability. Subjugating nature is part of man's culture, but while science has given us powers for dominating nature, it is weak in the area of observing and retreating from mistakes.

What it takes to end an environmental crisis

Cholera in London, 1858
It takes hardship, observation, data, and in the case of London's cholera epidemic - a stench from the River Thames so foul that Parliament ceased functioning. The next order of business was for the members of Parliament to quickly enact legislation ordering the overhaul of London's sewerage system.

1. They saw it coming

The book is introduced in terms of one ecologist's observation regarding environmental degradation: "they saw it coming but had not the wit to stop it happening". The opening chapter prepares the reader for a wide-ranging synthesis of knowledge from history, anthropology, neurology, etc. It explains how the historical record is to be the virtual laboratory for this study since the variables are too numerous for isolation in any actual laboratory. In finding out where we have been, we can tell where we are headed (2007).


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"The Progress Trap - and how to avoid it" Copyright Daniel O'Leary, registered at
the Copyright Office, Consumer and Corporate Affairs, Canada on April 5, 1991 (ref 405917)

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