James E. Smith, Michelle Jamshidi, West Virginia University, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering: Currently we spend our time on symptoms such as our shrinking abundance, real or perceived social inequities, minor environmental impacts, what others may or may not be doing, and our lack of personal prosperity. What we need are more entrepreneurs and innovators. They are the ones determined to break the cycle and truly find the answers to society’s problems.
Meredith Angwin, Physical Chemist, Naturalist, Educator: The Northwest United States is blessed with civic-minded, publicly owned utilities. Energy Northwest is a not-for-profit public power agency: it owns Columbia Generating Station (nuclear), wind turbines, a solar installation, and a hydro facility. The electricity from these projects is sold, at-cost, to the project participants.
Michael Shellenberger, Environmental Progress: Let’s look at 2016. Germany installed four percent more solar panels but generated three percent less electricity from solar. Even when I’m in meetings with energy experts and I ask people if they can make a guess as to why they think that is, and you’d be shocked by how many energy experts have no idea. The reason is just that it wasn’t very sunny last year in Germany. Well, that probably meant that it was windier, right? Because if it’s not as sunny then maybe there’s more wind and those things can balance each other out? In truth, Germany installed 11 percent more wind turbines in 2016 but got two percent less of its electricity from wind. Same story. Just not very windy. Every major journal that looks at it concludes that nuclear is the safest way to make reliable electricity.
James Hansen former NASA scientist, considered the father of global awareness of man-made global warming, man-made climate change, man-made climate disruption: The title of this article says a lot, "The Planet Could Become Ungovernable." The premise that humans have ever in the past or present "governed" Earth's Climate is far from reality. The hypothesis that humans will govern Earth's Climate in the future is pure imagination. Like the fairy tale about children and parents of Hameln, Germany, a Rattenfaenger may lead the believing public away to a human controlled utopian climate on Earth. The poorer half of the world will have to go without fossil fuels and just suffer through it.