Environment and Sustainability

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Bill Nye - The Planet is on Fucking Fire!
Bill Nye – The Planet is on Fucking Fire!

Introduction

Overview

From the money we gain from ending the US’ Global Terrorism Programs (GTP) we can redirect it into massive infrastructure spending to support a complete shift to sustainable: energy, transport, farming, etc… as well as working towards directly and aggressively combating climate change and global pollution. Working quickly to combat climate change and cleaning up global pollution is an imperative, for if we do not, then Humanity will eventually be destroyed by our willful corruption and ignorance.

A cleaner environment such as air, water, food, and more green spaces will have far reaching positive returns in the health, happiness, and productivity of each and every person. We shall make the money spent in this massive investment area back within 10 years just by virtue of the massive reduction stress and healthcare costs alone.

Also keep in mind that it will be the least among us who suffer most from climate change and pollution. Inequality is one of the largest killers in existence and climate and pollution is a massive part of that death toll. The rich and affluent think that they will be able to spend their way out ecological collapse, but at some point sooner than later they will need to understand:

When the last tree is cut, the last fish is caught, and the last river is polluted; when to breathe the air is sickening, you will realize, too late, that wealth is not in bank accounts and that you can’t eat money.

Alanis Obomsawin (Abenaki Indian)

Media to Get You Started

Take a look at these videos and the graphic below to prepare yourself for the level of change of the policies that I will propose. Look through these in the order I have it here for it will flow in a way that makes sense.

  1. Man by Steve Cut
  2. Carl Sagan’s Climate Change Keynote Speech (1990)
  3. Average Planetary Temperature Over the Last 20,000 Years
  4. Planet on Fire (Bill Nye)

Man

From the first moment I saw this video Man by Steve Cut (3 min 36 sec) I loved it because it really underscored Humanity’s callousness and thoughtlessness towards the environment:

Man by Steve Cuts

Carl Sagan’s Climate Change Keynote Speech (1990)

Also, if you have not watched the Carl Sagan video from the introduction section where he talks about climate change and, unfortunately, his words are still very, very relevant today. His speech, as always, was powerful and amazingly prophetic: Carl Sagan from his Keynote Speech at the Emerging Issues Forum in Feb of 1990 (1 hour 5 min). On my linked to post I also have a transcript of the speech available too.

Carl Sagan Keynote Speech at Emerging Issues Forum in Cornell University in Feb of 1990

Average Planetary Temperature Over the Last 20,000 Years

In a post of mine I showed this amazing graphic from XKCD which shows the change in Earth’s average temperature from 20,000 years ago until now. It is powerful to see how much of a radical difference Humanity has had since the industrial revolution. Temperature is NOT supposed to move like that. Seeing how radical this change is can help to underscore how large our crisis is.

A Timeline of Earth’s Average Temperature Since the Last Ice Age Glaciation (XKCD)

Here is just the last part which shows the radical change that Humanity has created:

Average Earth Temperature from 1500 Year Ago to Today (XKCD)Average Earth Temperature from 1500 Year Ago to Today (XKCD)
Average Earth Temperature from 1500 Years Ago to Today (XKCD)

Planet on Fire (Bill Nye)

If you have not seen this quick and entertaining clip from Bill Nye (38 secs) then please do because it brings to front the crisis that we are facing:

Bill Nye – The Planet is on Fire!!

Radical and Crisis Level of Action Needed

“I’d like to share a revelation that I’ve had during my time here. It came to me when I tried to classify your species and I realized that you’re not actually mammals. Every mammal on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with the surrounding environment but you humans do not. You move to an area and you multiply and multiply until every natural resource is consumed and the only way you can survive is to spread to another area. There is another organism on this planet that follows the same pattern. Do you know what it is? A virus. Human beings are a disease, a cancer of this planet. You’re a plague and we are the cure.”

Agent Smith (The Matrix, movie)

For far too long has Humanity been a plague upon the world – tearing up, polluting, and ravaging it without a thought of consequences to the environment or to how such actions would affect Humanity. With all of the environmental horrors we have wrought since the industrial age it cannot be said the humans are an intelligent species because we are destroying the only planet we have. There is no planet B. And, the real sad thing is that we have known about climate since the early 1800’s (Wikipedia). We have had plenty of time to do something about it and to prevent the horrors we are seeing today, and yet nothing has been done.

As I say in the Introduction section of this site that if any proposed changes are not radical then they are not worth considering, and this section really, really embodies this principle.

The radical changes fall in 3 broad areas:

  1. Environment
  2. Energy
  3. Food Production

Environmental

If we pollute the air, water, and soil that keep us alive and well, and destroy the biodiversity that allows natural systems to function, no amount of money will save us.

David Suzuki, Zoologist, author, and environmental activist

Declare Global Nature Preserves

We need to declare such places as the Great Barrier Reef and the Amazon Rainforest as global preserves protected from all pollution, farming, fishing, and development of any sort for they act as a breath of life for our planet. They should also be removed from national ownership and made a common heritage to ALL of Humanity and be protected, conserved, healed, and expanded by an international administration.

US Military

The US military is one of the largest polluters and consumers of energy in the world. Therefore, it shall have 1 year to create a 5 year plan to correct that, including a complete shift to sustainable energy and technologies.

Climate Change

  1. Resign the Paris Climate Accord
  2. Climate Change will be classified as a National Security Issue and and a Global Security Issue.
  3. The US government will have 1 year to create a 5 year plan to combat climate change in the US and worldwide, which should also include:
    1. the utilization of the various National Guards as well as the other arms of the military as a potential workforce to get things done
    2. massive use of technology such the use of drones in planting trees and other work
    3. investing in and building technology which directly removes carbon dioxide from the air. There is an amazing project that uses algae to do that which is more powerful than using trees

Disaster Preparation

We need to do serious research in how we can prepare ourselves for climate change and for such disasters as:

  • Yellowstone volcano erupting
  • mass forest fires in California
  • rising sea levels and general flooding
  • hurricanes
  • earthquakes

… instead of being caught with our pants down like has happened in Puerto Rico, Atlanta, and the various other places that have been struck by environmental tragedy where the US government has completely and totally failed leaving our people to suffer and die.

  1. A nation-wide analysis and report about which areas will be affected and how from those sorts of disasters.
  2. Come up with a system to prevent, mitigate, or work with such disasters and its damage or effects, such as forming areas to accommodate for rising water levels such as some of the Nordic countries are doing.
  3. Reform communities and housing to be able to withstand such issues or, preferably, create whole new sustainable communities further inland (or away from such disaster areas) so that these potentially affected populations can move to that are either out of the way of these issues or can compensate for them without an issue.

We need to do the work now instead of after it is too late which will cause much property damage, suffering, and the loss of innocent lives. To not do so is completely irresponsible, unethical, and fails the people, our country, and Humanity.

Genetic Collections and Databases

We need to create a large scale collection of organic and digital genetic samples of all species on the planet from bacteria, viruses, bugs, plants, animals, and humans so as to help ensure that Humanity and the life forms found on our planet of origin may be able to be recreated if needed at some time in the future after we have effectively destroyed ourselves through ecocide or war. This will also be useful so that we may be able to grow such creatures in galaxies and planets far away when we eventually colonize them.

Sustainable Industries

If it can’t be reduced, reused, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, refinished, resold, recycled, or composted, then it should be restricted, designed or removed from production.

Pete Seeger, Folk Singer & Social Activist

All manufacturing, building, production, agrarian, organizational, business, governmental, personal, etc… projects and processes should:

  1. study and minimize negative environmental and ecological impact
  2. study and minimize negative impact on humans
  3. utilize AI, automation, and 3D printing as much as practicable
  4. follow full life-cycle sustainable processes by:
    1. using sustainable energy, technologies, and techniques,
    2. full recycling of all byproducts and the product itself by:
      1. providing a service to do
      2. using a service which can do so
      3. provide an outline for full technical process to recycle a product which can and will be created and utilized
    3. create a plan for full remediation of all of the affected environments and ecologies

Environmental Certification and Rating Organizations:

Create national organization(s) to aid with the above processes which shall also create and manage evaluations and certifications for various levels sustainability and efficiency compliance:

  1. Creation of:
    1. infrastructure and facilities
    2. product
  2. Recycling of:
    1. recycling of process byproducts
    2. recycling of products
    3. recycling of infrastructure and facilities
  3. Protection, Remediation, and Mitigation of Harm to:
    1. environment and ecologies
    2. humans

Environmental Remediation

We need to look at our natural environment and then start to fix it as much as possible to compensate for and prevent pollution and the unnecessary destruction of the environment that Humanity has a penchant for doing. Environmental remediation and protection is a survival imperative.

  1. To ensure we have the best techniques for this process we will want to refer to indigenous wisdom to expand our pool of environmental knowledge, techniques and methods.
  2. Deserts and other barren areas can be completely rehabilitated to be budding forests in about 10 years. There are several groups working on that.
  3. End deforestation
  4. Plant a billion new trees in every country (with drones)
  5. Clean up the oceans even to the deepest and darkest depths:
    1. global work towards cleaning all trash and pollutants from oceans
    2. global ban on dumping waste into the ocean and any water sources
    3. recycling all plastics
    4. filtering out microbeads, microfibers, and glitter; stop using consumer balloons
    5. filter out chemicals (medical waste, biowaste, etc)
    6. use bioremdiative and other methods for cleaning the oceans such oysters farming and regenerating coral reefs
  6. Dig up old landfills and other waste areas and completely recycle and remediate them.

Nation-Wide Business Pollution Evaluation

All companies and their processes must be evaluated as far as how much pollution they have done and are doing:

  1. They will have 1 year to create a 5 year plan to completely remediate all environmental damage caused directly or indirectly (over the entirety of their operation and of their subsidiaries).
  2. Change their processes to completely prevent this in the future.
  3. Face an increasing amount of taxes every year until as such time as they have complied or be taken over by the government and CEOs/managers will be jailed.

Energy

Nuclear Power is NOT Sustainable Energy

Nuclear power is in NO way a form of sustainable energy. Thorium reactors are no better. Their 300 years of waste vs Uranium’s 10,000 years of waste is not a difference that matters to Humanity. Just check out the results from Fukishima and Chernobyl and the implications of any of those storage facilities leaking – and they will because that is inevitable. Unless magical precognition exists nuclear energy shall never truly be a sustainable energy option.

Fossil Fuel Industry

We will make the money back from the below process in 10 years due to health care savings alone by reducing pollution, increasing efficiency, and saving the environment.

  1. They will be held accountable for knowing about and suppressing climate change data and knowledge for decades, destroying the environment for profit, suppressing technologies that could put them out of business, and their owners and managers should be tried for Crimes Against Nature.
  2. An immediate and complete stop to all Fracking processes. The proprietary patents shall be nullified and released to the public so we can find a way to cleanup this absolute idiocy. Their business; managers, anyone who profited from this, as well as the government officials who passed this or agreed to do this shall be tried and jailed for crimes against Nature and Humanity.
  3. Current applications to build pipelines, rigs, etc… will be terminated. Any incomplete projects will have their permits terminated and those projects are to be completely recycled and their environments remediated.
  4. Any project that is not currently completely built and operational should terminate building and shall have their permit/license terminated and those projects are to be completely recycled .
  5. Corporate subsidies and tax breaks shall be terminated
  6. They will receive a 20% increase in corporate and management taxes
  7. Their financial actions will have to be approved by a governmental agency in order to prevent bypassing them or to avoid sabotaging the company so they do not have to deal with it.
  8. They will have 1 year to create a 5 year plan to:
    1. shift to alternative energy which shall include a job retraining plan to work in the sustainable and other related industries;
    2. completely remediate all environmental damage caused directly or indirectly (over the entirety of their operation and of all of their subsidiaries… in preparation to be classified as a public utility or else all managers and key decision makers shall face lengthy prison sentences, no compensation including Golden Parachutes, as well as fines for failing not only their company, but Humanity en toto.

Nuclear Power

  1. Current applications to build reactor plants will be terminated
  2. Any plant that is not currently built and operational should terminate building and shall have their permit/license terminated, and these facilities shall be fully recycled and the local environment remediated.
  3. Current operational reactor plants will have 1 year to create a 5 year plan to:
    1. shift to alternative energy
    2. recycle premises
    3. completely remediate all environmental damage caused directly or indirectly (over the entirety of their operation and of their subsidiaries) even taking into account their radioactive waste
    4. this one we might be able to wait on since they are already operational, although a plan must be created to handle its end of life transition as talked about above and then a powerful emergency plan will need to be made in order to handle and contain any containment disasters ??… in preparation to be classified as a public utility.

Shift to a Completely Sustainable Energy Economy

Sustainable Energy Types

See the appendix on Sustainable Energy in the book The New Human Rights Movement for much, much more information. This book is worth it just for this appendix which is very, very, very thorough.

We need to work towards a completely sustainable energy economy. Other Countries have done this or are working towards this and so can we.

  1. Geothermal
  2. Solar: panels, windows, paint, concentrated solar, high altitude solar, orbital solar stations
  3. Hydro: hydroelectric, gulf streams, tidal
  4. Wind: vertical axis wind turbines, high altitude wind turbines, kite systems
  5. Piezoelectric: roads, sidewalks, and buildings
  6. Capture EMF
  7. Hydrogen

Combine Sustainable Energy Types

Sustainable energy types should be combined as much as possible in order to maximize energy return on land use. Using land for only one type is a waste of its full potential. As an example:

  • a solar farm could be elevated to have vertical axis wind turbines below it, and/or house a hydroponic farm; the wind turbines could be used to cool the solar array
  • the heat from the solar array could be drawn off to heat water (which would also cool the array) which could potentially be used for hot water elsewhere or perhaps used in conjunction with a steam turbine
  • then also have a high altitude wind turbine and solar farm too

This uses the space below the solar panels and the airspace above the panels to generate energy and/or food too. Hell, let’s do all 4!

  1. high altitude wind turbines
  2. solar array
  3. vertical axis wind turbines
  4. massive multi-acre hydroponic farm

or

  1. high altitude wind turbines
  2. solar panels
  3. vertical axis wind turbines
  4. hydroelectric plant

Just pick any large scale building and design it to have vertical axis wind turbines, solar arrays, and high altitude wind turbines above it.

Sustainable Communities

Comprehensive Urban Planning for the World of Tomorrow

Our current towns and cities have come into being through organic evolution and happenstance having developed over decades without a long term sustainable, intelligent, efficient, and walkable urban plan which has resulted in significant negative logistical, social, and health ramifications. This fact makes it difficult to upgrade existing cities or to overlay a modern, intelligent, and sustainable social, environmental, or economic design within a urban plan (or lack thereof) that is not conducive to such things. 

We cannot manifest the world of tomorrow within cities that have been designed using the methods, technologies, and plans of past.

James O’Neill, Interstellar New Deal

Consider trying to:

  • implement an intelligently managed mass transit system in a small town that is not strongly centralized and is quite spread out.
  • convert to sustainable agriculture where it is locally run by polluting and money hungry agricorps
  • setup sustainable energy while battling local fossil fuel companies

In order to really effectuate many of the economic, technological, social, environmental, and sustainability changes that we will require in order to transform Humanity and move us into the future, a completely new, intelligent, planned, and sustainable urban design will be needed, one that will reflect our more modern planning and values as well as tacking advantage of the many technological advances. We need buildings, houses, and infrastructure designed from the ground up with an urban plan which is conducive to more modern, intelligent, smart, and sustainable which will enable social, economic, and sustainable plans to thrive there and a be a logical result of them.

We need to redesign and replace our cities and do so in a manner such as:

… where each city’s infrastructure will be designed from the ground up with all that it needs to support a specific population size in a healthy, intelligent, and sustainable way. We could start with smaller communities first so that we can mature the process and technology before tackling larger metropolitan communities, although if done well, such designs should scale well.

It is easier to build sustainable and smart cities anew than it is to continuously remodel old and outdated designs and technology. Once a new city is built, a population can be relocated there and then the old city can be completely recycled, the local environment remediated, and the area restored to grasslands, forests, etc. Our out-of-date urban spaces then need to be fully recycled and fully transitioned to a new efficient and intelligent model of city design.

If we really, really want to plan for a radical new future for Humanity then we can work towards a combination as such: Arcolgies + Atlas Pillar + Space Elevator + Orbital Ring

Sustainable Housing

  1. Recycle Old and Inefficient Homes: Old houses need to be torn down, recycled, and then either turned into green spaces or reconstructed using new modern techniques and materials (see below)
  2. Build Sustainable and Modern Homes: all new housing production should be required to be more sustainable and include such features as:
    1. need to be made disaster proof based on area survey and analysis while taking into account climate change eventualities
    2. sustainable housing designs
    3. sustainable materials
    4. weather and pest resistant materials and designs (square buildings are inefficient)
    5. localized food production
    6. sustainable energy production and storage
    7. smart housing technology
    8. green roofs or walls
    9. be livable by all demographics including disabled and the elderly
    10. integrated into a larger sustainable urban plan
  3. Sustainable and Locally Connected Communities: community houses could be tied together through a community center which could:
    1. have sustainable energy generation
    2. store and manage local electricity surplus and can share and sell it to other houses in the neighborhood or to other communities;
    3. act as the central internet provider
    4. provide large scale urban community hydroponic/aquaponic/aeroponic farms and organic food sales
    5. playgrounds and recreation centers
    6. community center
    7. community resource sharing and service center
  4. Increase Use of Technological Advancements
    1. We need to greatly increase the use of AI, sensors, automation, and 3D printing when it comes to construction. We can use such technological advancements to greatly speed up the building of houses and the recycling of old buildings and materials.

Recycling

“If it can’t be reduced, reused, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, refinished, resold, recycled or composted, then it should be restricted, redesigned or removed from production.”

Pete Seeger
  1. Ban on Single Use Plastics and Microplastics: or shift to a non-petroleum based product which biodegrades naturally in 6 weeks or less or, preferably, is safely edible for humans or other life. There are already a quite few products like this on the market.
  2. Recycle Human Waste: either in a bioremediative or technological way so that it can be returned to the ground and not pollute or contaminate our water and lands.
  3. Recycle All The Things: Everything needs to be recycled completely. If it cannot be recycled then it should NOT be created.
    1. Food and other organic waste should be composted and returned to the ground which results in carbon sequestration and fertilizing the earth.
    2. There is no reason that every single thing cannot be recycled including houses. Entire industries could spring up around this. Automated plans need to be available to recycle everything – a global database. If there is not an effective method to recycle something then it should NOT be made.

Shift to Alternative Energy Cars

All transportation companies:

  1. They will have 1 year to create a 5 year plan to completely shift all of their cars to sustainable energy which could include
    1. retrofitting their current fleets.
    2. creating a buyback or conversion plan to support transition to sustainable energy based cars
  2. Face an increasing amount of taxes every year until as such time as they have complied.
  3. Set up public sustainable energy charging stations for electric vehicles.

We will also want to work on designing cities with more free and sustainable public mass transportation (electric buses, hyperloops, etc) , as well as including smaller services like Uber or Lift.

Food Production

Monsanto

  1. The former owners and managers of Monsanto (now a part of Bayer) need to be tried at the Hague for crimes against Humanity. International Tribunal Finds Monsanto Guilty of Crimes Against Humanity (News Target) The owners and managers imprisoned and all technology, research, patents, IP, and funds returned to the people which will also us to learn how to combat it.
  2. The owners and managers also need to be fined for releasing a criminally negligent product which causes massive destruction to the environment and infects non-gmo seed crops.
  3. All of their engineered seeds need to be destroyed.
  4. The money from tearing apart the company should be returned to all of the small family farms that were devastated by their lawsuits and criminal negligence, and they should be reconstituted collectively in one way or another, if possible, through the evolved means mentioned below in the Evolution of Farming section.

Hemp Production

The US shall greatly invest in Hemp production and research for:

  1. construction: hempcrete, hemp based lime, hemp oil, etc
  2. products: paper, rope, clothes, fabric, plastics
  3. medicine: hemp oil, CBD oil, etc
  4. food: seeds, oil, etc

This will also allow us to greatly reduce deforestation and remediate the soil.

Evolution of Farming

  1. Sustainable and Efficient Farming Techniques
    1. Create a mandate as well as provide economic support for a shift to aquaponic, hydroponic, or aeroponic farming (as much as practicable) because this uses 10% of the land and water and is more easily to be made organic, and can be located in urban areas to keep food production nearer to population areas which also reduces its carbon footprint.
    2. Shift to permaculture and regenerative agricultural methods to maintain healthier soils
  2. Protect and Support the Pollinators:
    1. Ban bee killing pesticides.
    2. Add bees to endangered species list.
    3. Make destruction of bee colonies a felony
    4. Create areas in all communities that shall cater to feeding and supporting bees. For without bees much of our ecosystem will collapse which will hearken the end of Humanity.
    5. Create sustainable bee flower gardens and rest areas and parks.
  3. Research and Start Using the Most Nutrient Dense Food Sources – We need to start making serious investments and research into food sources which are nutrient dense and require little resources for the amount of food and nutrition it produces such as:
    1. insects
    2. mushrooms
    3. algae
    4. seaweed
    5. honey
    6. hemp

Animals

  1. Get rid of factory farms and only allow truly free range animals.
  2. For the benefit of all of Humanity we need to stop cows as food.
  3. Ban farming animals for food fur, skins, etc…; use stem cells or other current alternatives such as:
    1. hemp
    2. mushrooms
    3. pineapple
  4. Make animal cruelty a crime and register offenders
  5. Ban import of ivory and wild game trophies as well as fine and imprison people for big game hunting
  6. Create more parks to ensure unadulterated green spaces
  7. End zoos as we know them and shift to preserves. Animals should not be penned up in a cage which is cruel. Humans should be put into protective cages to traverse natural habitats in order to experience the natural world.

Healthy Food For All

  1. Organic whole foods should be cheaper than everything else.
  2. Taxes should be significantly increased on processed foods based on lack of nutritional density or the presence of physiologically harmful ingredients, as well as to support the increased healthcare costs incurred by the consumption of such deadly foods.
  3. Food should NOT be thrown away but should be either:
    1. given to those who are in need.
    2. composted and returned to the ground which results in proper carbon sequestration

Sustainable Burial

Humanity’s archaic and regressive methods of dealing with the world’s many dead through the use of burial plots and cremation while our collective population is rising results in several harms:

  • pollution from burning
  • the use of toxic chemicals through embalming
  • a significant loss in land area and green spaces

We need to consider greener alternatives such as these:

Large swaths of land could be reclaimed from cemeteries to forests (which can help with climate change) with each tree having been grown from an individual. Each tree could also have a plaque embedded in it or in front of it to commemorate the individual. Such a cemetarial forest or green space could be turned into vertical green spaces too, so that we are able to make more use of the same land which might be even more important as our populations continue to rise, as well as to help combat climate change. We would probably also want a memorial websites available for each individual too.