We will no longer have one of the most important resources responsible for the industrialization and modernization of our global society [which] we have relied on to run our ships and airplanes, heat our homes, fuel our cars, carpet our floors, clothe our bodies, brush our teeth, and wax our surfboards. In short, thousands of industrial, domestic, and recreational petroleum applications may not be possible in the coming century.” It is vital to switch to renewable sources of energy which draw upon the natural forces on Earth to convert energy to be used for the processes which oil currently powers. The greenhouse effect means that when oil is burnt it releases CFCs into the atmosphere which reflects the heat from the sun back onto Earth.
Although China and the Gulf region’s growth is stimulated by non-renewable resources, and despite natural disasters such as the BP spill, Piper Alpha and Exxon Valdes, which are damaging financially, environmentally and in terms of human life, every little helps in making the planet more sustainable for human life. Solar panels can produce electricity when installed on roofs. Recycling, reduction and reuse of waste products (some of which contain oil) keeps the products away from landfills which may be destroyed by burning. Less fuel consumption can be secured by carpooling and only using a car on long journeys – and hybrid cars run on electricity, not petroleum – and even when shopping, you can use fewer plastic bags, made with
hydrocarbons extracted from oil. Fluorescent light bulbs can replace argon-use ones, which are more efficient too. Protecting the oil reserves, combined with using hydroelectric, solar and wind power to make energy, will help these changes in lifestyle, the foremost of which is education in the developed and developing world.