Already 1C

Adding 2B more people by 2050

Every economy must grow by 2-4% per year

half before 2030, and go carbon-neutral by 2050

Must have a world-wide enforced carbon tax

The New York Times summary of the latest UN Report on Climate Change

Shared Socioeconomic Pathways

“Without societal transformation and rapid implementation of ambitious greenhouse gas reduction measures, pathways to limiting warming to 1.5°C and achieving sustainable development will be exceedingly difficult, if not impossible, to achieve (high confidence)”

“70-90% of all Coral reefs will be lost by mid-century” under the most optimistic plan of 1.5C

changes in crop mix can result in loss of income or culturally inappropriate food

dietary change towards global healthy diets, that is, a shift from over-consumption of animal-related to plant-related diets

land appropriation, and dispossession

700B a year need in in investments - the budget of what country?

need a world government

vote on the name of your local post office, not voting on whether or not you agree with the sea after it has risen

“The Gulf Cooperative Council (GCC) region (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and United Arab Emirates) is characterised by high dependency on hydrocarbon resources (natural oil and gas), with high risks of socio-economic impacts of policies and response measures to address climate change. The region is also vulnerable to the decrease of the global demand and price of hydrocarbons as a result of climate change response measures. The projected declining use of oil and gas under low emissions pathways creates risks of significant economic losses for the GCC region (e.g., Waisman et al., 2013; Van de Graaf and Verbruggen, 2015; Al-Maamary et al., 2016; Bauer et al., 2016), given that natural gas and oil revenues contributed to ~70% of government budgets and > 35% of the gross domestic product in 2010 (Callen et al., 2014).”

1C 2017 0.2C per decade

+2C by end of century

20ppm per decade since 2000

We need a Carbon Tax high enough that sequestration is an actual lucrative business.

Past emissions alone are unlikely to raise global-mean temperature to 1.5°C above preindustrial levels but past emissions do commit to other changes, such as further sea level rise (high confidence). If all anthropogenic emissions (including aerosol-related) were reduced to zero immediately, any further warming beyond the 1°C already experienced would likely be less than 0.5°C over the next two to three decades (high confidence), and likely less than 0.5°C on a century timescale (medium confidence), due to the opposing effects of different climate processes and drivers. A warming greater than 1.5°C is therefore not geophysically unavoidable: whether it will occur depends on future rates of emission reductions. {1.2.3, 1.2.4} WHY??

Good News

getting to 100 percent quickly would mean lots of “stranded assets,” i.e., shutting down profitable fossil fuel power plants

Beef 2.5C Temp Increase 64cm = 2 feet

1.5C = 1.6 feet Arctic is ice-free in the summer

20 more days of warm weather per year Temperatures in dry lands will be 4-5C higher, or up to 10F higher roughly 15% of all species will lose 50% or more of habitat Global per capita GDP down 18% Flood losses were so high I cou;d not believe them

How much increase in the number of summer days? How much crop land is lost due to chronic flooding and lost due to unsuitable temperatures? How many people will need to migrate? What are the exctintion rates? What is the increase in frequency and intensity of storms?

I am wondering if we differ on the specific effects? Or do we differ on how much pain is caused by those effects?

How much increase in storm surge? 14”, 18”, 22” or so by 2100. About 2’ higher than today. About 3-6 weeks. <5% of total, if increases are included. Very, very few in all cases. How much has happened so far with 1C? Similar to rates over the last century.

I think it’s mostly the impact of those affects. 1C hasn’t resulted in any countries being abandoned, it’s not going to happen at 2C. One inch of sea rise every five years is manageable just about everywhere that isn’t Venice. Tropics will shift toward rice and soy and away from maize and wheat, Canada and Russia will be huge net winners in agriculture. We have completely destroyed ocean fisheries several times over since the 1600s, and we move on to the new dominant species, etc.

This is in no way an extinction event. (A significant number of people believe we may be extinct in 100 years due to warming hype.) The earth is not burning up. It is a shameful rape of the environment due to our short-sightedness, the question now is how much consequence vs. how much short to mid term pain to reduce it. I think minor investment gets us to 2.5C limit then return lower. Major investment gets us to 2C, which would be slightly better but more expensive/disruptive. 1.5C looks to require a WW2 level of disruption, I think the damage caused by that level of spending is worse than the disease.

Put it another way. If 1% of worldwide GDP gets us to 2.5C cap, and 3% gets us to 2C…what else could we spend that 2% of world GDP on to improve the human condition? That’s a mindbending amount of money that could transform health care around the world and provide global high speed internet. Is that worth ½ of 1C?

Totally not saying that 1.5C and 2C wouldn’t be nice to have, just not at all convinced the cost would be our best use of resources.

A modest globally coordinated carbon tax - even $40/ton - would shift the balance in favor of renewables and accelerate our zero carbon date. ($40 is just $15/bbl of crude.) We’ve seen the disruption that can be caused by oil shocks (remember the early 70s?) and a gradual carbon tax strikes me as a much better way of doing it with minimal pain.

Mike Kidd And to put a 3F degree change into context, the difference today between Dallas and Chicago is about 18F. That would be Chicago moving 1/6th of the way to Dallas’s climate over the next 80 years. And Dallas becomes, what, San Antonio?

I agree that no change at all would be ideal, and smaller change would be better. What I react to is descriptions of that being a hell on earth, or claims that massive efforts are needed NOW NOW NOW when IMO there are much bigger priorities to address. (Wealth inequality, health care access worldwide and US, rising xenophobia and racism and facism, etc.)


At the high level the current two main topics of debate are: (1) what are the effects of climate change under various scenarios? (2) will it be sufficient to impose a $40 / ton CO2 carbon tax?

First, we both agree and acknowledge that the CO2 emission rate is still growing?

And agree that there is no current binding legal framework to support any meaningful climate change reponse at this time?

The current global plan is to have individuals and different communities do what they see fit and let them choose their spending priorities. Different communities have different levels of response to climate change.

Even with the exciting uptake in solar and wind, there is no reason to expect that we will have a global, coordinated response to climate change by 2030?

“We’ve seen the disruption that can be caused by oil shocks (remember the early 70s?) and a gradual carbon tax strikes me as a much better way of doing it with minimal pain.”

Agree that any and all carbon and climate taxes should be phased in with increases over time to avoid shocks - all pathways assume ramping costs.

“A modest globally coordinated carbon tax - even $40/ton - would shift the balance in favor of renewables and accelerate our zero carbon date. ($40 is just $15/bbl of crude.)

A carbon tax of $40 per ton, would not have a meaningful impact either in emissions or climate change: Getting to a 50% reduction in the emissions rate by 2050 is certainly better than not reducing, but we would still be on track for a 3C rise in temperature by 2100. Looks like $100 / ton is the opening table-stakes - and it needs to rise into the $1000s / ton between 2050 and 2100. We simply need to eliminate all energy production by fossil fuels.

How much sea level rise? “One inch of sea rise every five years is manageable just about everywhere that isn’t Venice.” The models and references I found indicate that your number is only achievable under the crazy aggressive 1.5C plan, we are track for 3 - 4 feet by 2100 (see the references tab)

What temperatures over dry land? “About 1, 2, 3F above current. More change in high lats, less in tropics, less coastal.” From the sources I was able to find, you are substantially lower in your estimated temps. I am seeing a 10F rise by 2100 over dry land under the current pathway, and between 3 and 6F depending on how aggressive our response.

“Storms - zero to modest change, science still shaky there. (As higher lats warm, the gradient powering storms loses strength, it’s not just absolute tropical ocean temp.)” There seems to be strong confidence that storms will increase in frequency and intensity - both the IPCC has a lot of references. And I found this focused reference:

We will lose all fish in the oceans by mid-century - even under the 1.5C scenario. With 70-90% loss of the corals, the entire ecosystem fails and we have runaway extinction of the fish (as well as the whales and dolphins that we like to look at). This is not a case where we can shift to another type of fish. No fish. This alone is a large enough impact that will cause ongoing multi-country wars. And there is really nothing we can do at this point to prevent this outcome other than to invest in DNA banks so we can attempt to reintroduce some of these species at a later century.

How will we fund the countries that are dependent on fossil fuel incomes? “We won’t. They’ll lose their customers, and income will drop. Saudi Arabia and Iran may have to cut their military budgets.” What happens to countries that lose 50-70% of their governmental revenues? I do not see any scenario that does not have outright war, mass migration, civil war - and ultimately the middle east will not have any countries left that we would recognize as an actual functional state.

“Mike Kidd And to put a 3F degree change into context, the difference today between Dallas and Chicago is about 18F. That would be Chicago moving 1/6th of the way to Dallas’s climate over the next 80 years. And Dallas becomes, what, San Antonio?” This is not a convincing model of how climate change will unfold. We are on track for most of the United States to experience a 10F increase in temperature. With the most agressive climate response we are looking at 3F. It is unclear if the forests of North America are sustainable with the current temperature and changes that have allowed various invasive pests. With summers longer by 20-50 days and temperatures higher by 3 to 10F, I do not see your summary as reasonable.

Let me leave you with a mental challenge - and I will take it up as well.

Let’s say you were drafted to be the world’s climate czar.

But, let’s assume that you have somehow agreed that the carbon tax must start at $100 a ton and rise to the point that fossil fuels are 85% phased out by 2050.

Let’s assume that you agreed to shift to an all electric fleet for vehicles globally.

And all buildings would be retrofitted or rebuilt to optimum energy efficiency.

And let’s assume that global diets were changed to be 80% less meat.

And you agreed to these changes.

How would you implement these policies to minimize the financial pain, and ideally, how would you implement these changes to cause financial growth?

Assume 2.5C How much CO2 needs to be sunk to stick to that? How much money would that cost? How many of these plants need to be built? How much energy would these plants consume?

How much money was devoted to war during WW2?

What is the 80/20 solution set?

There cannot be a more painfully perfect example than Puerto Rico’s power grid to illustrate why we must switch to locally generated power.

Energy of the future must be solar grids and windmills, backed up with energy stored in batteries. The batteries can be nifty Lithium batteries, or batteries can be super old-school and simply use the solar and wind to pump water uphill when you have excess production, and allow the water to flow down and spin a turbine when need more power.

Locally generated, distributed and stored power is also directly attacks wealth inequality - energy consumes about 10% of the GDP of the world. Like the cost of food, those in poverty spend a much higher fraction of their income on energy than the 10% blended world-wide average.

After the one-time costs of building solar, wind or storage, the on-going costs are a tiny fraction of a fossil fuel plant - and the need for the owners of the fossil fuel plant to make a profit. Every full-time cruiser on a boat knows intimately how to produce and store their own energy and most of them handle all of their own maintenance. Instead of a 10% tax on world GDP, maintenance would be much less than 1%.

From a single home to towns of a few thousand, creating and running their own energy systems would save lives in times of distasters, and save lives from climate change, create local jobs, and give back to those in poverty much more of their own money.