>If you have a better way to get humanity off fossil fuels, don't keep it to yourself.
I have actions that, given historical precident, have a much better chance of suceeeding. >Make a good case that it's cheaper and I will support that instead of working on power satellites >and laser propulsion. I'm not sure if you will like my case because it's not a quick fix. But, we've been trying quick fixes since the oil shock of 1973, almost 40 years now, and haven't made any significant progress. So, I'd argue we need a plan that will work in the long run as well as remediation in the short run. Short run: give nuclear power a level playing field...the same safety requirements as any other industry, and allow the testing of new safer, cheaper designs in the US and Europe. Practically speaking, it is unlikely that the Communist party/the government of China is a good source for innovation. Princelings tend to not want to vary from the tried and true much. So it is up to Europe and the US to do this. (I've had experience both with Chinese tech. goods and as a potential vendor for China and you can see the fingers of the Communist party holding back the wheels of progress in both cases). Short run: improve fuel efficiency standards. Add a tax to gasoline and electricity. Have rebates for low income people to balance the tax. If they spend it elsewhere, find. Short run: build a natural gas infrastructure for truck transportation in the US. The decline in US emissions to 1992 levels (even though the population increased 23%) is mostly due to the switch to natural gas from coal. But, the critical area is the developing world. China puts out more CO2 than the US and EU combined, and the new coal plants on order from China and India will add this amount again. So, we need to make nuclear power cheap. It may not be enough to be as cheap as coal, and in that case the west could switch but India and China would be far less likely to. In the west, the small difference in cost would not be a barrier. The difference is larger in India and China because coal is very cheap with no pollution control or mining regulations. Mid term, offer subsidies for synthetic biofuels that do not displace cropland. Right now, several companies are in pilot to initial commercial appplication. I'd give this field the highest chance of working: say 25% chance of being close to competitive with gasoline while using concentrated waste CO2, sunlight, bioengineered life forms, and brackish water. Then, the goverments should support research in areas that would allow for alternative energy in decades. This would be developing our knowledge in a lot of different fields so someoone could put the knowledge together to develop either a power source or effective power storage. They include Plasma physics Mesoscopic physics Synthetic biology Material sciences And more engineering oriented, but still experimental: Development of capacitance Development of compact accelerators This is not exhaustive, I'd welcome suggestions. It's putting governments back in the business of funding fundamental research at, say, 1% of GDP. There will be scores of possibilities that all have a 1%-2% chance of working. And when one does, venture capital and small companies can be the mechanism for picking winners and losers. The government's job is to prepare the field. Dan M. _______________________________________________ http://box535.bluehost.com/mailman/listinfo/brin-l_mccmedia.com