“It’s like what happened with landlines versus cellu-
lar phones,” Musk says. “A lot of developing countries
didn’t do the landline phones. They went straight to
Musk has calculated how many gigafactories like
the one in Reno would be required to transition
the whole world to renewable energy. The answer?
One hundred gigafactories, measuring about 15
million square feet each. That’s all that would be
required to make enough solar powered batteries
to give solar energy to not just the U.S., but every
nation on the globe.
Concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs)
create an enormous amount of waste that pollutes
soil, air and water. CAFOs also routinely use anti-
biotics, thereby promoting antibiotic-resistant dis-
ease and drug-resistant pandemics.
As noted by Musk, were larger industry giants to get
in on this, along with nations like China, the transi-
tion could be accomplished rather quickly. It would
be even quicker if governments were to implement
laws and regulations favoring renewable energy.
Some countries are already well on their way.
About 30 percent of Germany’s energy comes from
solar energy, for example. Denmark uses as much
as 100 percent solar, and Sweden recently declared
its intention to become the first fossil fuel-free na-
tion in the world.
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Easiest Way to Opt Out of a Destructive
10. Voting for a Cleaner World With Every Meal
As noted by Gidon Eshel, Ph.D., a research profes-
sor of environmental physics at Bard College, one
of the absolute easiest ways to opt out of destruc-
tive systems — without appealing to or waiting for
governments and corporations to change — is by
changing your own diet. Hopefully you can find the time to watch “Before
the Flood.” I think you’ll find it to be an eye-opener.
And, while realizing the extent of the environmen-
tal destruction can be distressing, it’s important
to realize where your power lies. In this case, the
greatest power you have as an individual is your
Eshel is a scientist who studies the effects of agri-
culture on climate. According to Eshel, 47 percent
of the land is used for food production and, of that,
70 percent is used to grow feed for cattle in feed-
lots. Fruits, vegetables and nuts account for a mere
1 percent of the agricultural land. Each decision you make either adds to the prob-
lem or facilitates the solution. So take responsi-
bility for your decisions. As mentioned, one of the
easiest ways to opt out of a number of destructive
systems is to change your diet.
While I believe everyone needs some beef, most
Americans do eat as much as five times more than
they need, so cutting back on beef could also have
a number of health benefits. An even more import-
ant change would be to switch to grass fed beef
which reduces the carbon footprint and improves
the soil, water and environment.
49 | HAPI Guide
By supporting your local farmers and choosing
fresh, local produce over “cheap” conventional va-
rieties commonly sold in larger grocery chains, you
help steer the agricultural industry toward safer,
more sustainable systems. You can also slash your
food bill by focusing on locally grown foods that
are in season, typically a bargain at that time of
year, or by growing some of your own. Remember