Picking climate change as the problem I’d like to fix is the easy part — who wouldn’t pick it? The hard part is to envision a solution that isn’t either blue sky or far away in the future. That’s where a unique program called the California Clean Energy “Moonshot” offers a real-time, present moment answer.
The “Moonshot” is a community effort that can be expanded globally. It aims at 100 percent renewable energy production with 0 percent carbon emissions. How? Several premises are at work:
- The technologies for renewable clean energy already exist in the form of solar and wind power, hydrogen fuel cells, and advanced storage techniques for electricity.
- Large power grids lose massive amounts of energy during transmission. They are inefficient, inflexible, and no one wants them built in their backyard.
- By turning to microgrids at the community level, the liabilities of massive power grids are eliminated.
- Microgrids can be made profitable enough to attract business investment, with vast pools of private capital waiting in the wings to fund them.
Consciousness Interrupting Capitalism/Courtesy of YouTube/Climate One
This community-based vision, has been thoroughly worked out by The World Business Academy, started in 1987 by Founding President Rinaldo Brutoco, and it’s ready to be tested in California right now. Shifting from the state’s centralized power grid to microgrids isn’t radical. The steps are rational, steady, and progressive. But more important than the technical side is the psychological aspect: In their own cities and towns people can abandon the hopelessness that hangs over climate change, organizing to actively solve the problem in their immediate area.
How to Change Consciousness/Courtesy of YouTube/Climate One
If you go to the Academy’s website, a simple philosophy is presented in one quote from R. Buckminster Fuller: “You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.” Immediately beneath this quote, you’ll find two PDF files for download that take only a few minutes to read and absorb. The overall impression I got after reading the Academy’s proposal is that something viable is at hand.
Rinaldo Brutoco on Moving from Scarcity to Abundance/Courtesy of YouTube/Climate One
The Clean Energy “Moonshot” is already being pushed at the highest levels of California state government, so there’s high visibility. Will this lead to actual change? In their presentation the project’s authors point out some striking initiatives already in motion:
• 33 percent of California’s electricity will be from renewables by 2020.
• At least 15 percent of China’s electricity will be from renewables by 2020.
• 40-45 percent of Germany’s electricity will be from renewables by 2025.
Pilot projects demonstrating the viability of each step in the “Moonshot” proposal are already operating somewhere.
Deepak Chopra’s 3 Personal Actions for Climate Change Consciousness/Courtesy of YouTube/Climate One
The problem with the current mindset about climate change is rooted in helplessness. As carbon emissions continue to increase alarmingly, most people are either waiting for a magic bullet in the future — some technological breakthrough as yet to be determined — or resigning themselves for the worst. There is also the massive obstacle of backward-looking business interests and utility companies who resist change and fight for a status quo that has no future except impending disaster.
I’ve thrown my support to the Clean Energy “Moonshot” as it applies in California. Whether or not it turns into the ultimate global solution is open to question, of course. But as an optimistic, doable solution, it offers many advantages.
Photo credit: Diggy Lloyd
Deepak Chopra, MD is the author of more than 80 books with 22 New York Times bestsellers including Super Brain, co-authored with Rudi Tanzi, PhD. He serves as the founder of The Chopra Foundation and co-founder of The Chopra Center for Wellbeing. Coming soon, The Future of God (Harmony, November 11, 2014)
Photo: Diggy Lloyd