Archive for October, 2007

The Solution to Global Warming and Peak Oil? Math

October 13th, 2007 5 comments

The so called “energy crisis” may in fact be solved by simple math; specifically the math of money. The idealist in me would rather people live environmentally sound lives and be good stewards of the Earth because it’s the right thing to do. I am sure there are a number of people who wish I was “greener” (and I am sure I could be); I haven’t placed too much importance in some of the doomsday theories, but that doesn’t mean I don’ think we should do what we can to take care of our planet. That being said, it seems the reality of the global warming “problem” and the peak oil “crisis” is going to work itself out, not because of nutty environmentalists, but because it makes economic sense.

The world keeps spinning because of money it seems. I don’t have a problem with businesses, even big businesses; I think they are needed and necessary. I don’t even have a problem with them using the Earth’s resources (both space and energies). It makes sense that they will be influenced by the almighty dollar. Bottom line is crucial: they need to pay their employees, stock holders, decrease costs, etc. What is surprising is that this model of business will actually help the environment… if they let it.

Popular Mechanics recently came out with their 2007 Breakthrough Awards (all of which are extremely interesting). The reason for this post is one of the winners: Amory Lovins: The Prophet of Efficiency. Lovins and his “Think and do tank” Rocky Mountain Institute have been helping businesses move to soft energy technologies.

He is a pragmatic, pliers-in-hand visionary with a penchant for physics who spends his time engineering a future in which Americans stop burning fossil fuels, yet improve their standard of living. Getting there, hes certain, is mainly a matter of tapping a nearly limitless resourcecorporate pressure to cut costs and improve the bottom line.

The Daily Green has a good article on Lovins and the Breakthrough Award that you should also read: Why Global Warming and Peak Oil are Irrelevant: A Quick Look Inside the Very Full Brain of Amory Lovins (H/t to Sal).

Lovins and the team at the Rocky Mountain Institute have applied radical efficiency to help redesign more than $30 billion worth of facilities in 29 sectors.

If oil runs out next year, or in the next decade, that will matter less than the rise of competitive sources of energy in the marketplace. Petroleum will go the way of whale oil, which in 1850 was the worlds fifth largest industry, Lovins said. That powerful industry lasted precisely until coal-based oils provided a cheaper alternative to the common lighting fuel. You dont hear much about whale oil anymore.

Whalers were astounded, Lovins said, when they ran out of customers before they ran out of whales.

Read the whole thing. And also check out Lovins’ PM Breakthrough Award article and video, PM’s guide to sustainability, and PM’s 3 Big Ideas for Efficient Big Business from Amory Lovins. Interesting stuff. I guess it just show you can be green in a variety of ways.

Oh, and also be sure to check out this brilliant idea: Shawn Frayne: The Nonturbine Wind Alternative: Windbelt, Cheap Generator Alternative, Set to Power Third World. This is genius. How has someone not come up with this yet? Simply amazing. And I like that his idea came from watching the Tacoma Narrows Bridge collapse.

Categories: Around the World, Social Commentary Tags:

The Pale Pacific Records a Live CD!

October 12th, 2007 No comments

Gabe and Justin

Erin and I at the showBack on August 11th, Erin and I went to another awesome show at The Crocodile Cafe. The Pale Pacific put on two shows because they are going to put out a live CD! How awesome is that? The set list was great; the CD should sound amazing. Cam, Gabe, Greg, and Justin gave a performance quite worthy of being recorded and now Cam just has to find the time to mix all the tapes down. I just hope it comes out soon! We’ll see I guess. I will be sure to keep you updated when it becomes available.

Here’s the scoop, as per usual, I took some pics and some video clips. For your visual enjoyment, check out my Flickr set: The Pale Pacific @ The Crocodile Cafe. Some are posted below as well and will take you to those pictures, but you should check out the full set (and larger versions). AND for your visual and audio enjoyment, I have posted some clips up at YouTube. You should check them out, I am pretty sure you will enjoy them. (You can also check out my Pale Pacific YouTube playlist.

  • Wake Up Call
  • Sucker Punch
  • Stop/Start
  • Reasons to Try
  • In The Sun Pt. 1
  • Gravity Gets Things Done
  • 11
  • CamCam's PedalsCamGregGabeCam
    The Pale Pacific Rocks!

    Categories: Meaningful Song, Photoblog Tags:

    Two Nonnegotiables

    October 10th, 2007 7 comments

    9 days since my last post? Lame.

    Last Sunday at All Saints Church Bill gave the first sermon in a series about relationships titles “Finding the Love of Your Life” - provocative, eh? The foundation of the sermon was Proverbs 3.6: “In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” Seems like a good foundation. I am actually not going to talk about the bulk of the sermon (but feel free to listen to it, it was quite good), but I wanted to take a brief look at one of his points. He noted that going into marriage there need to be two nonnegotiables (and one strong recommendation) in finding “the one” (which is a load of crap by the way, if you disagree about that, feel free to argue!).

    Nonnegotiable #1: Spiritual Compatibility. Where are we in our walk with God? If we are in vastly different places, that could cause problems. The extreme of this is being in a relationship with a non-believer; this is a touch subject and is bound to piss people off, but it really is crucial. If you are going to be devout in your faith, how would being married to an unbeliever work? These are problems that would never go away. Being able to walk with God together is a foundational aspect of a healthy relationship.

    Nonnegotiable #2: Life Purpose Compatibility. Where are our lives heading? Amos 3.3 says “Do two walk together, unless they have agreed to meet?” Or in the the paraphrase of The Message: “Do two people walk hand in hand if they aren’t going to the same place?” How could two people walk together if they were not going in the same direction? This is not to say that the couple cannot or should not have separate interests, but it does mean that two people heading for marriage should actually sit down and discuss where they want to go in life and see if those visions are compatible. If it is pushed away to be dealt with inside the marriage, it will just cause problems. If you can’t agree now, you probably won’t then.

    Strong Recommendation: Personal Compatibility. This isn’t a nonnegotiable, but it is still pretty important. How did you grow up? What is your family like? What is their background? These are important questions that really do need to be asked. Of course a person’s history does not completely determine who they are and how they act, but it can still play a big role. Understanding a person’s context will help to understand them. Are the ways that you relate compatible or are there always misunderstandings? Personal compatibility is a big issue that should most definitely be explored.

    The reality is that our choices, and they are our choices (“decisions determine destiny”), should be made within appropriate boundaries. There are a number of ways that God guides/teaches/communicates with us in a number of way (which Bill expounds on in the sermon). It is up to us to use those resources to make the best choices we can; when we do that, God will bless our decisions. That doesn’t mean thing will always be easy, in fact things will always get difficult at times (obviously), but it means that there can always be forward progress (Gary Thomas’ book Sacred Marriage is a great read on this topic as well). There is freedom in the choices we make within the boundaries God has provided for us. And he truly has provided them; without boundaries things would be chaos and problems within the relationship would abound. Enjoy the freedom! Now if only I could get a date…

    Categories: Theology Tags:

    Student Teaching and other Time Takers

    October 1st, 2007 2 comments

    I’m down to one post a week? That is just sad! I am a pathetic excuse for a blogger! I almost feel guilty…

    For the past four weeks I have gone back to middle school. No, I haven’t forgotten remedial math. I have taken up my internship in the Bellevue School District as a student teacher for the 2007-08 school year. What does that mean? Well it means that I get up early and go to bed late. This is especially true now that I also have classes on top of school. Does that mean I have no spare time? No, not really, but I have just been pretty tired and haven’t been focusing my energy on blogging. So what have my last four weeks looked like, you ask? I have been working with two mentors who have been extremely helpful and encouraging of my role in the classroom. I have been mostly in the 8th grade physics classes there (and one 7th grade integrated science). I have been helping students in their labs and I have started taking over a number of the class warmups. In the next few weeks I will be picking up my first class that I will have for the entire year. It is pretty exciting and scary at the same time. It has been great building relationships with the students and easing into more substantial responsibilities. What I am not looking forward to is writing full lesson plans for every lesson… no teacher ever actually does that and it will just be tiring to write them all the time with everything else I have to do as well.

    Really, it all comes down to getting into a routine. I need to get into a routine of sleeping better (the going to bed at 1 and waking up at 5:30 doesn’t really feel too good after a few days. I need to get in the routine of going classwork. I need to get in the routine of living in community again. It’s all good stuff. The stuff that takes me out of routine is also good stuff. I think it is a matter of finding balance. But I do so love the non-routine things!

    Well, it is already past 11… how about that for routine?

    Categories: Daily Life Tags: