> It isn't a perfect world, But doing nothing will only make it worse.
Exactly. I seriously doubt we are soon going to come up with any way to get billions and billions of Watt/Hours of energy without some nasty side effects. They all involve trade offs between instant costs and longterm risk, environmental losses, direct risks to humans, etc. All of them. even 'Green Energy' unless somebody patents direct conversion of unicorn farts... and locates some unicorns. And they probably have some serious downside we wouldn't discover until going into GW scale production.
>"Green Energy" isn't quite there yet.
And won't ever be. "Green Energy' is energy without consequences. As soon as a proposed 'Green' energy source gets beyond research, beyond government subsidized toys for 'I'm Greener Than Thou' prats and goes into real production the side effects (which were there all along) become visible and the Greens turn on it.
Look to history. Remember when Hydro was THE perfect green energy? Most /. readers are too young, but I remember. Then of course people noticed it disrupted fish lifecycles, submerged whole ecosystems, changed flow patterns of rivers and in at least one instance caused an earthquake. OH NOES, CONSEQUENCES! Can't have none of those, start bustin' those damned dams.
Windmills kill birds, environmentalists just won't abide them anywhere THEY have to see the eyesores. A couple of windmills are great, LOOK, I care about saving the earth! A thousand windmills cranking out MWs for the power corp? EVIL!
Solar? So long as the government tosses enough subsidy cash and the toxic manufacturing stays out of sight in China oh yea, plenty of Holier than Thou egoboo for the preening green. Cover the desert in collectors to generate industrial scale power? What! Lizards and shit live in the desert dude!
Geothermal? Causes earthquakes. Oops. Sorry bout that.
Tidal? Will kill fish. Just wait, you know it does.
Biofuels? Just toying with it spiked corn prices and is on the brink of causing worldwide hunger. Any attempt to derive a noticable chunk of our current energy needs from there is folly and our energy needs are about to skyrocket as the bulk of the world makes it to the 19th century.