Sustainable Automobility
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Sustainable Automobility

Understanding the Car as a Natural System

Paul Nieuwenhuis

If we are part of nature, then so is everything we make. This unique book explores this notion using the example of the car, how it is made and used and especially how we relate to it, with a view to creating a more sustainable automobility.
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Chapter 2: The problem with cars is . . .

Paul Nieuwenhuis


We all laughed when Rumsfeld said this, but it makes a lot of sense when you think about it. Most important is that we are aware of the fact that there are things we do not know that we do not know. The nature and impact of climate change inevitably come to mind. In fact at the time of writing (2012-13), among the general public, climate change scepticism appears to be on the rise again. People will point out that (1) not all scientists agree that climate change is happening and (2) even those who do, do not all agree that humans are to blame. The truth is, of course, that 100% scientific consensus on anything would be a new phenomenon, itself worthy of further research. Few things in life are 100% certain and very few decisions in life, whether by professionals, politicians, businessmen and women, or private individuals, are based on 100% certainty. Even many medical procedures to which most climate sceptics are happy to submit themselves are based on controversial science or are not based on 'evidence-based' medicine (Guyatt et al., 1992). Also, climate scientists are among the first to admit that their findings are not 100% certain. Lipton and Bhaerman (2011: 33) remind us that cognitive neuroscience now holds that the self-conscious mind represents only about 5% of our cognitive activity.

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