This is my response to this article "BP backs Jatropha as a biodeisel feedstock"
we don't "need" cars, we want them.
Without cars/transport, our lives revert to about a 50km radius, with very few trips outside this. Society is conditioned to living in a larger radius than that. Our food is grown in other hemispheres, most people live more than 50km from work, friends and family. A lot of people live hundreds of km from major hospitals.
Until society constricts back to a smaller radius, man made fuels may be a bandaid fix, but we really need to focus on "relocalising", or "transitioning".
Whole cities, even countries, not just people, need to restructure, so that all necessities are within a reasonable distance. Unfortunately, for state government, this means no mega hospitals, instead build up a resilient network of smaller hospitals. The same goes for educational institutions, like child care and Uni. For Coorporations, this means more cottage industries, more local general stores, etc, instead of humongous Westfield Malls. On a personal level, we need to build our community's resilience and diversity. Don't invest your life in a 4 bedroom, 2 bathroom house on 400m2, in an estate that is 1/2 an hours drive from schools, shops, and doctors. (I think we are all on the same page there. lol)
If you are already invested for life, make friends with neighbours, grow vegies/herbs guerrilla style on the nature strip, on one of those stupid traffic slowing islands or on your roof. Rent out an unused room, or invite gran to live with you in return for free childcare. Work from home. Carpool, or do the shopping for your elderly neighbour, to get the most out of each trip. Use your local convenience store, (if its not already 7/11), it might be more expensive, but you are paying for the convenience, and when they go out of business, you will have to spend more on petrol to get to mega mart anyway.
We are investing in the wrong things. (Why spend billions of $$ on Clem7 for example?) We need to focus less on preserving our current lifestyles, and building a system that will be resilient in the face of energy descent, so that the impact is positive rather than doom and gloom.
Dear friends ...
5 weeks ago