Sunday, October 7, 2007

Green Investments and the "Tipping Point" of the Mind

Let's face reality.

Green investing is not mainstream... yet.

This proposition - that now is the time to begin a dynamic, purposeful, long-term shift to new energy - is still very much in the balance.

We don't know for sure whether the sea change we need in the mindset of the world's corporate decision makers will take hold.

Of course, anyone with common sense can understand the benefits of moving toward more sustainable businesses involved in solar, recycling, efficiency, clean water, biofuels and the like... and away from crude oil, cigarette makers and the military-industrial establishment.

As long as we use oil at our current rate, we'll be beholden to dictatorships in the Middle East, including Saudi Arabia... which could be worse than Iran when it comes to human rights... and certainly in terms of the number of screaming maniacs it put on the 9/11 planes (actually, I don't believe there was a single Iranian involved, was there?).

Green Investments: An Effort to Change the Way Humans Think

The point here is that this is an effort to change the way human beings think. There's nothing automatic about it. The Dark Ages would have continued forever were it not for advances in technology, art, philosophy and political freedoms.

In a way, we have been in a crude-oil-and-coal-fueled dark age in terms of energy production and consumption patterns, and it is costing us.

Not only with polluted rivers and streams... smog... cancer... and all the rest... but in terms of opportunity costs...

The longer we continue whistling in the dark, the further behind we'll be left by competitors such as China, India and Europe.

Already, Europe is way ahead of the U.S. in terms of developing wind infrastructure.

Already China is pulling ahead of us in terms of solar-panel production, jatropha cultivation and wind production.

The time to begin developing an alternative-energy infrastructure in the U.S. is right now, and the government needs to get behind it full-force... not merely through setting standards, but by pouring money into this nationwide project.

(Just as importantly, we can help our friends and family to understand the urgency of the situation as well.)

Green Energy Could Create 3 Million New Jobs

Another reason to do so: jobs.

As pointed out in a recent article on CNN/Money, some 3 million new jobs could emerge over the next 12 years or so as a direct result of our shift toward green energy such as solar panel production and installation.

These are jobs that aren't going to be exported to China and other places either.
Unless, of course, they're already so far ahead of us that it will make no sense to develop these new technologies and products here in the U.S. going forward.

Fact is, it is possible for us to lose the battle against retro energy very slowly, over the course of years or even decades.

In order to avoid this, we need a "tipping point" of the mind whereby all sensible people - including those at the heads of industry and politics - finally agree that a shift in inevitable... and that the only question is: how can we accomplish it quickly enough to make a difference for the next generation?


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