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My best guess at a climate solution

Leave it in the ground

No more extracting oil, coal, or gas.

Plug the leaks

Rehydrate peatlands, fix the microbe/methane issue in rice production, plug abandoned gas wells.

We need both

Consumers drive industry and industry drives consumers. Both need to change. Our QoL is definitively going to get impacted.

Rich people are the problem, but

It’s true that the ultra rich are most of the problem. We need to address that quickly and resolutely. But society’s wealth is built on fossils, which we need to ban, and everyone’s QoL is going to get hurt.

Renewable doesn’t mean infinite

Even a kid understands that if they get a one-dollar weekly allowance every week, they can’t spend ten dollars per week on skates. But a society is dumber than a kid and will try to use as much as, and more than, we have.

It’s time to ration

We’ve rationed energy in the past and we need to do it again. This is also an efficient way to cut proof-of-work systems since a ban on it (which I would definitively welcome) is hard to enforce. It’s also a good way to get at the ultra-rich.

We can’t ration down to zero

We do need some amount non-fossil energy. Wind and sun is the cheapest and fastest and is what we should build ASAP but they have an unsolved storage problem. Nuclear might be less bad than lithium. Nuclear is more expensive than wind and sun but since it can run at night it can be a good complement. Unfortunately gen IV is vaporware and even a gen III plant takes a really long time to build. Ergo we need wind and sun as soon as possible.

We need all three

Reduction, mitigation, adaption. We need to reduce climate change, mitigate climate change, and adapt to climate change. We can’t just do one or two of them.

Capture is bull (but necessary)

If someone starts talking about capture in connection to a fossil burning plant, or sequestration in connection to extraction, they’re lying or deluded. It’s a scam. No capture is more efficient than leaving it in the ground. But overall we do need to net negative. We do need some sort of sequestration.

Tax and dividend has problems

One problem is that it’d have to be an infinite tax, or more than infinite since there’s a negative supply since we need to net negative. The other is that it’s a solidarity issue: more money more emissions?! And the third problem is that with a dividend people would just put it straight back out there. It breaks the entire idea of a market, which rationing does more efficiently and fairly.

Cap & Trade has problems

Cap and trade projects have a lot of blood on their hands as they are pretty much handouts to industry and fake “offset” programs. The fossil fuel industry has made billions in these credits, credits that you and I would never get. The problem (that the biggest polluters were handed the most free money) is often referred to as “grandfathering” by economics. Capping without grandfathering is rationing, which I support. The “auctioning” variant might seem isomorphic to a tax at first glance but it’s not; it’s better because it places a hard limit on emissions and lets price be dynamically determined from that limit.

How do we get there

Making changes in our own lives is great (eat plants) but ideally we’d want politicians (and their overlords: mass media) to sober up and implement policies to steer industry and the rich. I started out all “grassroots will fix it!” and now it’s decades later and that was a mistake because we didn’t. If people can’t even vote right, how the heck are they gonna do right?