With polluters, industrialized nations and the World Bank moving to ensure that only market-based “solutions” — and thus, no real substantive changes — dominate at the Cancun Climate Summit, alternative energy remains a topic of hot debate.
I explore the Islands’ current fascination with biofuels as part of the Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative in a Honolulu Weekly cover story that delves into some of the many obstacles we face in transitioning away from our dependence on imported oil.
Shortly after writing the article, I heard a Democracy Now! interview with Derrick Jensen, who was talking about how “the dominant culture is killing the planet.” It was a thoughtful exchange, which I hope to delve into a little more in future posts, but he made one point that should be at the forefront in our discussion of alternative fuels:
[O]ne of the problems that I see with the vast majority of so-called solutions to global warming is that they take industrial capitalism as a given and the planet which must conform to industrial capitalism, as opposed to the other way around.
That pretty much sums up the issue. So long as we keep trying to perpetuate a way of life based on the endless consumption — and waste — of precious renewable resources, we’re going to keep running into dead ends. Literally.