Many progressives see global warming as a catastrophe that supports a major shift in our lifestyles.
Some conservatives view global warming as a hoax. Most acknowledge its reality, however, arguing that economic models often show very little impact on global GDP in the next century. (Larger in dollar terms but smaller in percentage.)
I lean a little more towards the conservative approach, although I am also concerned about the loss of fauna that cannot be sorted out in GDP figures. Also, there may be a cost to human utilities that is not reflected in the data, probably due to the more uncomfortable climate. And there will be some serious regional implications. So in terms of balance, I’m still in favor of a policy like carbon tax, a policy that I don’t think is expensive.
Today, I want to challenge the framing that both sides of the debate seem to have embraced, the view that tackling global warming requires big sacrifices. I suspect that the main need of the problem ChangeBut I see no reason to assume these changes will happen Sacrifice.
The The following tweets Catch my eyes:
France is nothing special like Iceland, where clean energy is easy to generate. It is the second largest economy in Europe, and a fairly normal developed country. And yet 99% of its electricity is zero carbon. Yes, their cars and trucks still run on petrol, but electric cars are on the way
One argument against copying France is that clean energy is really expensive. That’s the decent thing to do, and it should end there. But is it expensive? Consideration The price of electricity In different developed countries:
France is not the cheapest, but its electricity prices are lower than other major Western European countries (Germany, United Kingdom, Italy, Spain).
France is largely nuclear, but relies on a mix of wind, solar, hydro and other low-carbon energy sources. Large nuclear (and hydro) power provides a buffer for time when it is cloudy or windy. Once France switches to electric cars and trucks, it will probably solve its carbon emissions problem at a much lower cost. And their high-speed trains are already electric. (Heating and industry are also carbon emitters, but I suspect there are also low cost solutions.)
In contrast, Germany is shutting down its nuclear industry and replacing it with coal-fired power plants.
This post is not about progressives and conservatives; It is true that the response of the developed world to global warming has been miserable when you consider how low the cost is to deal with the problem effectively. There are many faults to go around.