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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

CLIMATE SHOCK

New  York Times columnist Joe Nocera (left) in his op-ed column today entitled, A Geoengineered Planet, alerted me to a new book, Climate Shock, by Gernot Wagner of the Environmental Defense Fund and Martin Weitzman of Harvard.  Wagner teaches at Columbia and graduated from Harvard and Stanford as an economist.  Weitzman is a product of MIT, Stanford and Swarthmore, and is highly respected in his field of environmental economics.  Wagner is the younger guy.

To quote from Amazon.com:

If you had a 10 percent chance of having a fatal car accident, you'd take necessary precautions. If your finances had a 10 percent chance of suffering a severe loss, you'd reevaluate your assets. So if we know the world is warming and there's a 10 percent chance this might eventually lead to a catastrophe beyond anything we could imagine, why aren't we doing more about climate change right now? We insure our lives against an uncertain future--why not our planet?

There are many ways to reduce climate warming, and among the popular ones include:

  1. eliminating Republicans
  2. invoking a severe carbon tax
  3. convincing the populace to minimize the usage of fossil fuels
  4. geoengineering

So people are just not getting it and numbers 1 to 3 are just not happening, so let me today address geoengineering, a concept being advocated in Climate Shock.  Seven years ago the Huffington Post published my Geoengineering of Climate Change.  Let me keep this posting very short (but it will take you an hour if you wish to analyze my four HuffPo's referenced today) and just quote the final paragraph, a sentiment favored by the two above authors:

Before anyone gets too irrational, let me underscore that no one, not even the most extreme supporter, is even suggesting that anything of any magnitude be initiated today. It wouldn't hurt, though, to set aside a small amount, perhaps 1% of the global change budget, to comprehensively study the more reasonable suggestions, especially reviewing the environmental implications, so that if that one in a hundred chance that a perfect global heating storm (as, perchance, depicted in The Venus Syndrome chapter of SIMPLE SOLUTIONS for Planet Earth) actually happens, we will have a few rational emergency options worthy of consideration.  (That second visual just above comes from an article on 10 geoengineering ways to save the world.)


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