I am in awe at the simplicity of all the solutions to all the world's problems.
You could point out that nearly all of them involve too many humans on one small planet and you'd be correct. The old joke about solving the greenhouse emissions problems by simply having all the people on Earth hold their breath for five minutes is obviously true but wouldn't be much fun for most of us. Reducing the human impact, whether by reducing population or, well, by reducing human impact, is the only way we can save our planet. Sorry, but for the aware, this is an inescapable conclusion.
We humans stupidly ask ourselves how to sequester carbon while we continue to dig it up and burn it, causing great environmental calamity at both ends of the operation. In fact, very little of the energy we expend actually improves the human condition, whether it's hauling a 120 pound human female around in a fossil fuel powered three ton SUV, or the inappropriately named "security light" mounted 24 feet off the ground with an inadequate reflector shield so that it uses three times the wattage necessary while simultaneously irritating the neighbors by shining an unwarranted light through their bedroom windows.
Perhaps we can rename them "Paranoia" lights since they actually statistically increase crime in their vicinity. Renaming them does nothing concrete but installing adequate shielding reflectors would greatly reduce their energy consumption and eliminate the crime of "light trespass", a term I have recently become aware of and like a great deal. By what tortured stretch of the imagination should anyone be allowed to shine lights on someone else's person or property? It is a crime, plain and simple, but even so, it pales when compared to the fact that escaped light steals the very stars themselves from all of us.
We actually, at one time in our history, had our energy problems well managed with our well equipped and self sufficient communities of the fifties, needing only carefully chosen technological advances from today's cornucopia to make them little heavens on earth. I remember a time when the grocery store, the pharmacy, the school, and the place where my Dad worked were all within walking distance. There was such a thing as a family farm. Gas was 17 cents a gallon and sirloin was $1.19 and the President was our hero.
Then the Oil companies and the Auto companies and the War companies became ascendant. Mass transit was labelled a communist plot and GM brought out the Edsel.
President Eisenhower warned us...The "Military-Industrial Complex" he labelled it... but Ike, grand as he was, did not have the courage it would have taken to set this nation and thereby the world on a better course.
Imagine how little meddling the world at large would be doing in the Middle East if oil were currently worth less than $10 a barrel? It's possible even even now.
I am an Idealist, of course, and have this insane idea that people should sit down together, paint a common picture of a realistic Eden, and work together toward achieving it as a goal. The journey may seem distantly inachievable but each single step is very close and not so big.
It would be so easy.