This is generationalequity's Typepad Profile.
Join Typepad and start following generationalequity's activity
Join Now!
Already a member? Sign In
Recent Activity
With the U.S. on the sidelines, preoccupied with health care reform, the developed and undeveloped world appear to be at an impasse over the terms of a new climate treaty. As a consequence, perhaps it is time to start thinking about Plan B, where many countries remain outside a "Treaty of the Willing," until it is in their core economic interests to make firm, and transparent commitments to control greenhouse gas emissions. In the meantime, the developed countries and their allies should begin exploring the creation of a new Sustainable/Low Carbon Free Trade Block, whereby countries that operate within the confines of a new Global treaty on Climate Change, and adopt other planet friendly policies agree to eliminate tariffs, quotas, and fossil fuel subsidies, etc. on their imports and exports while those outside the treaty, (presumable led by China and India), pay an annual carbon tax on their exports, levied by an internationally recognized body responsible for trade laws and global finance, (e.g., GATT, or the OECD). The Tax would be determined by the global market price for carbon offsets X the amount that each non-signatory country's emissions, as monitored by satellites, exceed what they would have emitted under the GHG emission treaty. The proceeds from the Carbon Tax should be invested in low carbon projects in developing countries, (e.g., forest and habitat preservation, the phase out of biomass burning, and carbon sequestration projects involving sustainable agriculture, and coal fired generation). The emission targets for developing countries (adjusted for population) would be phased in such that they reflect the emissions of more advanced countries after they make the planned 80% reductions in total emissions. To the extent that emissions reductions globally are insufficient to avoid the worst case scenario on Climate Change, then a renewed effort and focus should be placed on mitigation of climate change impacts, and planetary engineering to slow the temperature increase, and buy time for a carrot and stick approach, and technological innovation to bear fruit. A canal from the Gulf of California to the Salton Sea should be constructed and be fully operational by the middle of the century to offset expected increases in sea level, and various planetary engineering schemes, (e.g., the injection of highly reflective particles into the upper atmosphere, and other solar shading schemes), should be carefully analyzed and if found safe and cost effective implemented to buy time for new technologies and international agreements to take hold. Other low cost mitigation measures should be pursued immediately, including the painting of urban roofs and streets white, utilizing military or heavily armed environmental police forces to protect wild habitats and virgin forest, a global crack down on black carbon and super greenhouse gas emissions including trade embargoes or even military action if non-compliant facilities continue operations, the development of new crops varieties that utilize less water and fertilizer, and deployment of sustainable terrestrial farming and advanced aquaculture to replace collapsing fish stocks.
It's interesting that the EPA is so focused on the utilization of liquid biofuels, that they never published a lifecycle greenhouse gas analysis for compressed domestic natural gas and its biofuel analogue, (i.e., Compressed Biogas, and SNG from biomass. Had they done so, I suspect that compressed biogas and SNG from crop and other waste streams would have shown an >80% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions relative to diesel and gasoline, and little or no indirect land use impacts. These gaseous fuels would also show lower emissions from fuel logistics and reduced traffic congestion related to the absence of distribution by Tankers.