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January 18, 2007

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I haven't read the _New Yorker_ article but your paraphrase is full of common sense. I do believe that the U.S. can eliminate its dependence on foreign oil; the question is over how we get there. The right government policy is to subsidize energy savings or to tax energy waste, not to back a specific technology. No one knows which tech path forward is best, including us technologists.

I too enjoyed the New Yorker article. I was looking for it online, when I stumbled across your website. I'm looking for hopeful signs anywhere I can find them these days. Hopefully this article caught someone's eye. Someone who is more important and influential than me - that is.

Speaking of hopeful signs, have you seen the work that the Appalachian Trail Conservancy is doing on the Lebanon Mountain Trail? I have a story on my site from 12-25-2006 about the project.

New Yorker doesn't have it posted, but it can be accessed through LexisNexis.


Copyright 2007 The Conde Nast Publications, Inc.
The New Yorker
January 22, 2007
SECTION: FACT; Profiles; Pg. 34 Vol. 82 No. 46
LENGTH: 6187 words
HEADLINE: MR. GREEN; Environmentalism's most optimistic guru.
BYLINE: ELIZABETH KOLBERT

Amory Lovins's home, which also serves as his office and "bioshelter," is open for self-guided tours weekdays from nine o'clock in the morning until four in the afternoon. Built into a mountainside above Snowmass, Colorado, it has curved stone walls, a flat roof, and several sets of solar panels, some of which rotate to track the angle of the sun. The building's double-paned windows are lined with a polyester film that allows visible light to pass in but prevents thermal radiation from getting out, and the space between the panes has been filled with krypton. Although wintertime temperatures on the mountain routinely drop below zero, the building has no furnace; it is warmed by sunlight and by heat that has been collected in, among other places, a pond that lies between the Xerox machine and the dining room. The first time I visited, Lovins had just finished doing some laundry in his front-loaded, energy-saving washing machine.

He took the damp clothes out of the washer and hung them in a little glass-ceilinged room. It was a bright blue morning, and Lovins predicted that the clothes would be ready to wear by nightfall. In the winter, if the sky is overcast, it can take up to two days for items like bluejeans to dry completely, but this is no problem, he assured me, provided one is capable of thinking more than twenty-four hours in advance.

(Bedouina snipped almost entire article - fair use extracts reproduced only)

"Markets are meant to be greedy, not fair. Efficient, not sufficient. They're very good at short-term allocation of scarce resources, but that's all they're good at. They were never meant to tell you how much is enough or how to fulfill the higher purpose of a human being."

It was getting late, and I was keeping Lovins from his report. As I prepared to leave, he recalled another line, this one from Wallace Stevens: "After the final no there comes a yes and on that yes the future world depends."

LOAD-DATE: January 22, 2007

THank you, Mary, for posting this; however I cannot keep the whole article, because of copyright issues. I'll delete most except for fair use. People either have to look for it online later, look for it in the library or buy the issue before it leaves the stands; or if you are subscribed to LExis/Nexis search for it there.

As a writer I am concerned about intellectual property and I do not feel comfortable reproducing Miss Kolbert's article in whole.

Thanks anyway, Mary.

I just heard Amory talk at Stanford University-- one of a series of lectures open to the public. He has smart ideas that seem to be answer requirements for all parties. One that looks particularly promising: electrical energy supplies at a small level, e.g. the house, instead of at huge, region-wide levels. Call it Decentralized Renewables.

Rationale:
It's sustainable, strategically defensible, and companies make big big money on the deal. win:win:win

Link to the Charlie Rose interview: http://tinyurl.com/yoqata

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