Using oil, coal, & natural gas for our energy is as if someone said, ‘let’s build a civilization on dinosaur bones.’ Somebody else says, ‘dinosaur bones! I am not sure how many of those there are.’ Then someone responds, ‘Oh, Yes! There are lots of them out there. Let’s just do it.’ - Thom Hartmann, Author: “Last Days of Ancient Sunlight” Portland, OR
"If you like buying oil from the Saudis, you'll love buying solar from the Chinese!"— Thomas Friedman
- former Energy Secretary James Schlesinger responding the American addiction to fossil fuels and our inability to be energy independent
The Dinosaur Economy is an energy intense economy that relies primarily on fossil fuels such as oil, coal and natural gas that are derived from dinosaurs, plants and other prehistoric biota. The Dinosaur Economy is going extinct because these resources are running out.
"Our children and grandchildren are going to be mad at us for burning all this oil. It took the Earth 500 million years to create the stuff we're burning in 200 years. Renewable energy sources are where we need to be headed." -- Prof. Jack Edwards
In order to prevent climate change, the world has to switch from high-carbon, polluting, power generation; to new, low-carbon generating capacity. So in order to benefit in the long-term we need a huge building programme which unfortunately, in the short-term, will create a significant increase in CO2 emissions. It's like being caught by the hook of a fossil-fuel-powered crane which has lifted us off the ground. We know that when we eventually fall, the higher we are off the ground the more it will hurt. So the sooner we get off the hook the better—but, ironically, we must pull ourselves higher to lift ourselves off. Perhaps we can call this dilemma, the 'energy hook'.
“...When it comes to climate change, it's the fossil fuels we insist on burning—particularly oil—that are the single greatest cause of global warming and the damaging weather patterns that have been its result.” — Barack Obama
In 2010, 37 governments spent $409bn on artificially lowering the price of fossil fuels, according to the International Energy Agency. This makes fossil fuels cheaper and slows down the transition to low-emission alternatives.
"Imagine if I was scolding my kids not to pee on the toilet seat while paying them per-dribble. I'm just saying."—David Roberts, Grist.
"It's very easy right now to talk about climate change as... theoretical, to talk about the dirtiness caused by coal plants as...aesthetic" said NAACP president Benjamin Todd Jealous. "But when you ... actually meet with people in these communities, the stories that they tell you – about their children's lives being diminished, about older people in the communities lives being shortened by the presence of these plants – are disturbing."
Coal seems cheap only if you ignore the social costs.
"The window for profitable investment in coal mining is closing. " — Goldman Sachs, Rocks & Ores Commodities Research Report, July 24, 3013.
'Although they were lucrative, fossil fuels are now increasingly risky investments, and the stakes are too high to maintain a stable climate. A carbon-neutral, and eventually carbon-free, economy is not only possible; it has become imperative.' — Logan Yonavjak, Contributor to Forbes Magazine
'Right now it is now a free market. It is a free loading market. The fossil fuel industry is free loading on our health.' — Mark Z. Jacobson, Professor of civil & environmental engineering at Stanford University and director of its Atmosphere and Energy Program.