Maybe this is more suited to another thread, but groundrules / neobuckeye / whomever: If we did have to go cold turkey off fossil fuels tomorrow for power generation and transportation, what technologies would we use instead and what would that look like?
* No cell phones or PCs in home use; drastic reduction of civilian energy consumption. At the very least, the higher cost of power would translate to higher consumer costs, providing a limiting factor on availability.
* Transportation shifts to rail for interstate / intercity. Walking / bicycling for personal transport, perhaps supplanted with biofuels for ICE.
* No commercial air travel as it would be cost prohibitive.
* Based on those last two, a significant reduction in consumer goods available.
* Power grid decentralization: Solar / wind in as many places as possible, storage via battery bank ( mostly lead acid batteries? ).
Rus, ur too optimistic. Going, as you wrote, "cold turkey off of fossil fuels tomorrow," would in a short amount of time lead to mass suffering and death---from starvation (no natural gas and petroleum for pesticides, fertilizers, packaging, transporting, freezing and refrigerating food stuffs;), exposure to cold; the spread of diseases ( due to a shut down of water and sewage systems); global economic crash (due to it's reliance on ships, planes, and internet communications) and so on.
Now add climate change, peak oil and "peak everything" to the mix, and sincerely ask ourselves what options remain.
Some deep ecology or anarcho-primitivist folk might say "Good, let the humans (including themselves ?) die off. At least that'll prevent our species from committing ecocide."
Or some of them might be less callous toward fellow humans but nonetheless think that the die off of humans will be the lesser tragedy, compared with continuing much further down the ecocidal path we're on.
But someone could counter those arguments--at least for the time being---by saying that, while it is true that humans have accelerated extinctions and destroyed a lot of the Earth's ecosystem, a significant portion of the human species alive today---though certainly not the majority----are thriving and living longer than any of our ancestors, while various other non-human species are still doing ok.
I'm interested in what you think.
Edit : Die-off is obviously not the only possible scenario. Industrial civilization could 'collapse'* without human extinction, resulting in some sort of so-called "primitive" human social arrangements.
Or, Climate Change, combined with peak oil, could involve 'difficult periods of transition' yet still involve continuation of one or multiple types of complex societies.
* For some people, 'collapse' denotes scenarios unfolding over months. For others, it's years or decades. John Michael Greer claims it's the latter. (Yeah, his site is the Arch-Druid Report. That doesn't necessarily invalidate his views, does it? )