The author addresses today’s concern about global warming and climate change. Using personal experiences, he provides real examples of what individuals can do to transition from being a part of this problem to being part of its solution.
The actual transition of the author’s home away from burning ancient hydrocarbons to running totally on solar power with no emissions was successfully completed in about 8 working days by two different contractors. By adding 20% more rooftop solar PV modules, he now harvests enough electrical energy from the Sun to drive a plug-in hybrid vehicle 10,000 miles / year without burning gasoline.
His Colorado home is now celebrating three years of being free from burning hydrocarbons thereby demonstrating it is possible to 'Live without Fire' - quite comfortably he adds.
Admittedly, the transition to inexhaustible energy was motivated by the emerging ethics of Ecomorality. Nevertheless, after re-examining our current broken economic system, the author still concluded it makes sense (and cents) to move beyond burning ancient hydrocarbons now - for the sake of future generations and all life on our planet.
Fire has taken us from brandishing burning sticks to ward off pre-historic predators, to pre-digesting our food with its heat making virtually any other living system on the planet a source of energy for our own subsistence, to molding Earth’s elements into tools for creative construction as well as mass destruction, to being a source of thermal energy to power our technology, to propelling us to the Moon.
Fire has served us well and it will always be a part of our natural world. But fire can no longer be used as the backbone of our energy intensive life styles.
The Great Burning that has occurred for the past two centuries allowed humans to experience an exciting ride through an age of exploding enlightenment, but burning our one-time-only stores of ancient hydrocarbons is not a way of living sustainably for several reasons we discuss in the book.
Unfortunately the fires of seven billion people are now altering the paper thin sheath of delicate protective gases around our global home posing an imminent threat of making our planet uninhabitable for many of our complex living systems - including ourselves.
The author asked himself, "Why am I buying products that are linked to things I don’t like? Why am I buying products that are linked to behavior that is unsustainable?" And he decided to empower himself using his limited buying power. Since making the transition to solar and geothermal energy, he no longer needs to buy electricity made from coal or natural gas; he no longer needs to buy natural gas to heat his home; he no longer needs to buy gasoline for local travel.
He describes how easy it was to make the transition to "Living without Fire"