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Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Stop Dancing With Dinosaurs

WASHINGTON — Call it, if you will, a converging of the dots. There's no question that America is moving far too slowly toward the greener, more energy-efficient and environmentally sustainable ways that a century of global turmoil, climate change and likely severe fuel emergencies clearly demands.

Even so, some bits of fresh evidence suggest the country's gluttonous energy and land consumption ways may be starting to turn course, with luck in time to avoid being a 21st-century Titanic.

Helped along by multiple scientific warnings and most recently Al Gore's documentary, "An Inconvenient Truth," we're beginning to take the threats of global warming far more seriously. On June 5, the U.S. Conference of Mayors unanimously voted to call for sharp reductions in fossil-fuel use in all buildings — both for construction and heating-cooling. The breathtaking goal: to make the nation's building stock "carbon-neutral," using no more fuels made from oil, coal or natural gas, by 2030.

The stakes are immense. Buildings account for 48 percent of total U.S. energy consumption, well ahead of transportation (27 percent) and industry (25 percent). The mayors' resolution calls for immediate steps to cut back fossil fuel demand for new buildings by 50 percent, massive energy-saving renovation of existing buildings and a 10 percent cutback in buildings' total fossil-fuel use each five years to 2030.

Among methods to be used: more-efficient heating, cooling and ventilating of buildings; green and recycled building materials; and buying renewable (solar, wind, geothermal and biomass) energy.

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read the rest here...

Stop Dancing With Dinosaurs

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