on NPR tonight. i think it was a local show, and i didn't get the guest's name. in the 15 minutes or so i heard, he was talking about the opportunities for young people due to the impending rapid transition away from a fossil fuel based global culture. the economy of the earth is going to change. if you are in your teens and twenties, you are in a prime position to take advantage of it. learn skills that will take us beyond fossil fuels, and you have a good chance of not only helping the environment, but becoming wealthy in the process.
anyway, that got me thinking...
it seems like mother nature, or mother earth, has the perfect solution for fossil fuel pollution: limited supply. it's going to run out before we can kill off the ecosphere.
so what about nuclear energy? another thing this guy said is that it would take 1000 new nuke plants to replace our current oil consumption. that's trillions of dollars, first of all, which we don't have, and you would need not only that, but a similar density of plants world wide! think of the gigatons of waste.
so we might manage to kill off the earth after all? not likely. i don't think we are quite stupid enough to build that many nuke plants, but even if we did, i submit that nature has the solution for that too. rapid, random, even precipitous mutation and then selection for organisms which thrive on the new environment. we likely won't evolve fast enough, we'll resist it to the death, literally. lots of other species will, though, especially lower on the ladder.
now apply that last paragraph to the catastrophic (for my generation) end of the fossil fuel based world economy. if you can evolve quickly and dramatically enough to thrive in that new world, you will rule it.