(Fancy graphic from the Atlantic)
Julio Friedman at the Atlantic has some shit your pants type numbers for us:
Every year, human activity emits about 35 gigatons of CO2 (the most important greenhouse gas). Of that, 85% comes from fossil fuel burning. To a lot of people, that doesn’t mean much — who goes to the store and buys a gigaton of carrots? For a sense of perspective, a gigaton is about twice the mass of all people on earth, so 35 gigatons is about 70 times the weight of humanity. Every year, humans put that in the atmosphere, and 85% of that is power.
Global warming? Fucked energy policy? Go fossil fuels go!
I had a conversation with a fine friend of mine a week or two ago about getting some solar panels for your house and selling that extra power back to the power company. Why power your house with store bought electricity from a coal plant when you can do this shit? Answer: (high start up costs). High costs or not, they are affordable for many, and you have to wonder why more of those many don't jump on this type of thing.