Ray Kurzweil: No Energy Or Water Shortages, Climate Change Is No Problem

Ray Kurzweil. Photo by Michael Lutch. Courtesy of Kurzweil Technologies, Inc.

Ray Kurzweil. Photo by Michael Lutch. Courtesy of Kurzweil Technologies, Inc.

Lauren Feeney elicited some gems from futurist Ray Kurzweil in her interview for PBS. Among his predictions:

  • “In 20 years we’ll be meeting all of our energy needs with solar.”
  • Life extension technology is about to take off — meaning far greater life expectancy.
  • There will be no water shortage as we use the abundant electricity to convert polluted water.
  • We are going to have plenty of food from “vertical agriculture, where we grow plants, fruits, vegetables and meat in computerized factories by artificial intelligence; hydroponic plants tended by intelligent robots to create fruits and vegetables, in-vitro cloned meats, basically just cloning the part of the animal that you want to eat, which is the muscled tissue.”
  • We shouldn’t worry about climate change — the new technologies we’re developing will beat it.

Crazy stuff! I’m not sure I want to eat cloned portions of animals grown in a lab…

Read the whole interview at PBS.

majestic

Majestic is gadfly emeritus.

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39 Comments on "Ray Kurzweil: No Energy Or Water Shortages, Climate Change Is No Problem"

  1. Yeah, if we could just take that pesky “human” factor out of the equation, this might actually come true.

  2. Yeah, if we could just take that pesky “human” factor out of the equation, this might actually come true.

  3. speculation

    speculation

    speculation

    speculation

    speculation

    speculation

  4. other Mr T | Feb 22, 2011 at 5:42 pm |

    Shouldn’t we kill and eat the rich, first?

  5. other Mr T | Feb 22, 2011 at 1:42 pm |

    Shouldn’t we kill and eat the rich, first?

    • We’re going to have to.. so we can use their money to fund real projects like the ones Kurzweil speaks of…

    • Desmetspartan2009 | Feb 23, 2011 at 1:41 am |

      ONly the super rich my friend. The .2% who keep gaining MASSIVE profits. I have nothing against the rich, only against the Super Class.

  6. I read the interview and I think Kurzweil is overly-optimistic. Futurists love to idealize the future without having to think too hard about how to get there.

  7. I read the interview and I think Kurzweil is overly-optimistic. Futurists love to idealize the future without having to think too hard about how to get there.

    • BrittneySpears | Feb 23, 2011 at 1:30 pm |

      Uh, have you read any of his books? Its not like he and a whole lot of other smart people havn’t been figuring this out for the last 30 years. They’re not just sitting around taking bong rips and saying “You know what would be epic bro? Like, if you could somehow live longer and stuff and only clone the meat you want to eat. That would be killer”.

  8. With the economy the way it is and the way it’s headed, plus all of these negative factors Kurzweil points out heading our way like a freight train without breaks, I really don’t think all of the Utopian technology he dreams of will be here quick enough. Furthermore, ALL of our energy requirements met within 20 years? With the energy companies entrenched so deep in oil and the profits they make from it, you think they’re gonna just gonna give up and switch to solar within a 20 year period? LOL F’N LOL.

  9. With the economy the way it is and the way it’s headed, plus all of these negative factors Kurzweil points out heading our way like a freight train without breaks, I really don’t think all of the Utopian technology he dreams of will be here quick enough. Furthermore, ALL of our energy requirements met within 20 years? With the energy companies entrenched so deep in oil and the profits they make from it, you think they’re gonna just gonna give up and switch to solar within a 20 year period? LOL F’N LOL.

  10. WhiteRose | Feb 22, 2011 at 7:51 pm |

    He must be on magical mushrooms…

  11. WhiteRose | Feb 22, 2011 at 3:51 pm |

    He must be on magical mushrooms…

  12. Like Mulder’s poster, I want to believe…

  13. Like Mulder’s poster, I want to believe…

  14. I don’t think he is wrong in terms of Technology.

    I think he is purposely ignoring the political aspect of things. He is speaking in terms of resources and technology.
    about the political and corporate powers that may push hard against this actually becoming widespread.

    It’s up to people like him, and Dr Michio Kaku to let us know what tech is possible so we know what to demand/reach for.

  15. I don’t think he is wrong in terms of Technology.

    I think he is purposely ignoring the political aspect of things. He is speaking in terms of resources and technology.
    about the political and corporate powers that may push hard against this actually becoming widespread.

    It’s up to people like him, and Dr Michio Kaku to let us know what tech is possible so we know what to demand/reach for.

  16. Where is my freaking personal hovercraft?

  17. Where is my freaking personal hovercraft?

  18. He seems not to understand the impact of the financial crisis on long term development and R and D…..

  19. He seems not to understand the impact of the financial crisis on long term development and R and D…..

    • Anonymous_Reader | Feb 22, 2011 at 7:10 pm |

      The only financial crisis is the need for money and the resultant greed. The investment in current infrastructure stands in the way of the application of R & D that has already taken place. The Weitzmann Institute of Science in Israel has perfected a method for liberating hydrogen from water by photolysis. The late Stan Meyer invented a method of splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen more efficiently than any other process. As long as there is oil to mine and refineries to run, solar energy will be “economically unfeasible.” In order for the human race to advance, we must eliminate money and greed. In the “Star Trek” universe, the earth is one of the planets with no currency, at least by the 24th century if not before. (Dream on.)

      “When money comes through the door, science goes out the window.” – R. R. Rife

  20. Anonymous | Feb 22, 2011 at 11:10 pm |

    The only financial crisis is the need for money and the resultant greed. The investment in current infrastructure stands in the way of the application of R & D that has already taken place. The Weitzmann Institute of Science in Israel has perfected a method for liberating hydrogen from water by photolysis. The late Stan Meyer invented a method of splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen more efficiently than any other process. As long as there is oil to mine and refineries to run, solar energy will be “economically unfeasible.” In order for the human race to advance, we must eliminate money and greed. In the “Star Trek” universe, the earth is one of the planets with no currency, at least by the 24th century if not before. (Dream on.)

    “When money comes through the door, science goes out the window.” – R. R. Rife

  21. Thank goodness! Now we can all get back to our gluttony and spending – thank god for visionaries who can see beyond the facts.

  22. Thank goodness! Now we can all get back to our gluttony and spending – thank god for visionaries who can see beyond the facts.

  23. Anonymous | Feb 23, 2011 at 1:09 am |

    We’re going to have to.. so we can use their money to fund real projects like the ones Kurzweil speaks of…

  24. Desmetspartan2009 | Feb 23, 2011 at 5:41 am |

    ONly the super rich my friend. The .2% who keep gaining MASSIVE profits. I have nothing against the rich, only against the Super Class.

  25. The vertical farm concept is braindead. I was impressed by this guy’s ideas when I first read his book but as time goes on it becomes more and more obvious that his optimism is just mindless and divorced from reality.

  26. The vertical farm concept is braindead. I was impressed by this guy’s ideas when I first read his book but as time goes on it becomes more and more obvious that his optimism is just mindless and divorced from reality.

  27. There’s a fine line between what is plausible and possible…and actually having the political and social will to get it done. Old Ray is right that these things could easily be part of our future…

    …but first we have to break the paralysis that comes of an active class war that eats up all of our collective energy and leaves us only struggling to survive…prosperity and innovation do not thrive in these times.

  28. There’s a fine line between what is plausible and possible…and actually having the political and social will to get it done. Old Ray is right that these things could easily be part of our future…

    …but first we have to break the paralysis that comes of an active class war that eats up all of our collective energy and leaves us only struggling to survive…prosperity and innovation do not thrive in these times.

  29. rocketman | Feb 23, 2011 at 11:14 am |

    where is the rocket backpack for traveling to work, I don’t see it on his list…

  30. rocketman | Feb 23, 2011 at 7:14 am |

    where is the rocket backpack for traveling to work, I don’t see it on his list…

  31. BrittneySpears | Feb 23, 2011 at 5:30 pm |

    Uh, have you read any of his books? Its not like he and a whole lot of other smart people havn’t been figuring this out for the last 30 years. They’re not just sitting around taking bong rips and saying “You know what would be epic bro? Like, if you could somehow live longer and stuff and only clone the meat you want to eat. That would be killer”.

  32. Bwmmiller | Feb 23, 2011 at 8:48 pm |

    Check the off-grid pages of this same net to realize that a new way is already here. Many folks, holed up with the latest science and technology serving them well, live tax free, off grid, secluded, often arms guarded, lifestyles foreign to you or me.
    Around the world this is so! Xenophobic Middle Class Americans are beginning just now to look out from their propagandized cocoons and see flashes of reality!

  33. Bwmmiller | Feb 23, 2011 at 4:48 pm |

    Check the off-grid pages of this same net to realize that a new way is already here. Many folks, holed up with the latest science and technology serving them well, live tax free, off grid, secluded, often arms guarded, lifestyles foreign to you or me.
    Around the world this is so! Xenophobic Middle Class Americans are beginning just now to look out from their propagandized cocoons and see flashes of reality!

  34. SoSpecial | Feb 23, 2011 at 10:38 pm |

    I imagine this to be the exact way most of this stuff is thought up.

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