Currently, my car wouldn’t run, I couldn’t fly between cities, I wouldn’t be buying anything built overseas, my home would have no heat, and I wouldn’t have any electricity (except some that I might get from the San Onofre nuclear plant, but there are a lot of houses for one little nuclear plant to power)
However, there is almost nothing that we can’t currently do without using fossil fuels, and we could do it easily, and we even know how to do it already.
My car – ethanol, which can be derived from many crops, but currently done most easily from common field corn; Brazil doesn’t use any gasoline. They exclusively use ethanol (and biodiesel), with only minor alterations needed to their engines to make it just as efficient as gasoline, cheaper, and almost pollution free. If we didn’t want to use ethanol, electric cars are real, they are just as good as standard cars, and actually, better. The Tesla sports car has a much higher acceleration than any other production sports car because an electric motor delivers 100% of its torque as soon as you stop the gas. Internal combustion engines require time to spin up to maximum efficient speed. Its top speed is comparable to a production sports car.
Passenger jet – the only real problem, because jet fuel is different from gasoline/ethanol type fuels, because they require a higher energy density. But I have no doubt that with a little research, an appropriate fuel could be found.
All cruise ships and transport ships – all modern vessels use massive internal combustion engines, but they don’t drive the propeller shafts. Instead, the internal combustion engines (like your car) are used to power electric motors. These electric motors spin the shafts, because they are much more powerful and much easier to control.
Home heating could be provided by solar-powered water circulation systems. They already use this all over the place to heat swimming pools. It wouldn’t be an issue to scale it up (and properly insulate your house) and use it. I’m sure that there are other methods that I’m not thinking of that would work well.
Electricity is very easy. Wind, solar (two types), geothermal, wave, tide, current, probably others. NOT nuclear. Nuclear is very bad, there is nothing good about nuclear energy. It is dangerous, and it is dirty. I can point you to a dozen sites that will show you that these alternative energies have already been PROVEN to be able to compete with nuclear energy, and be BETTER than oil, coal, or gas-fired plants. The alternative energies are almost 100% clean. They are highly efficient, they are cheap to operate (though they do require some expense to build), and you’ll never run out of energy, especially when you combine two or more electricity sources in one place. Here’s a fun one. Look up “The Geysers” somewhere. Wikipedia is fine. It puts out almost half of the power generated by my nuclear plant, it doesn’t put out any bad gases or fluids, it recycles waste water from a nearby city and county (so that’s an active good thing). Its only negative is that you can’t walk up and put your hand on a fumerole anymore. I’m a geologist. I love fumeroles. But I’d rather have clean energy.
That’s how it would be different… and better (and realistic).
by: Earth Man
on: 9th August 10