Lately I have been watching Jeremy Rifkin's speeches on Youtube.
He is an important economic advisor to many governments. As we are in the aftermath of the second industrial revolution (oil based), he developed ideas for a five pillar infrastructure for the third industrial revolution. This really impressed me. His idea for this seems to have been adopted for implementation by the European Parliament in 2007.
The five pillars are, briefly:
The above requires the cooperation of business, governments and civil society. A "biosphere consciousness" beyond narrow interests is required to effect this all. I like his ideas and they are compatible with the Transition Initiative dealt with elsewhere. This revolution is necessary because of peak oil and climate change.
Very recently, I discovered that climate change seems to have sped up as scientists have discovered, end of last year, that the arctic see releases methane ever faster from beneath the Arctic seabed. Scientists now estimate that the Arctic see-ice may disappear entirely in the summertime within a few years. With methane concentrations in the air speeding up at an alarming rate, temperatures on earth may rise much quicker than previously thought. This is a very serious condition indeed. We may wipe out ourselves in forty years and see mass extinction of species within twenty years. If only ten percent of this threat would be realized, it could already be devastating to much of life on earth.
The bottomline: we may have only ten years left to really do something about climate change and start transitioning to saner forms of economy now. Jeremy Rifkin said, about two years ago, that scientists (and we all) consistently have underestimated the speed of climate change. Now we know that it seems to happen ever faster. Time to act is now! We owe it to our children and to all life on this planet.