we all share
can be a unifying theme in our divided political time. We all depend on it to deliver air, water, and a stable climate we have been blessed with to experience life. All of us want to protect life resilience. However, we are divided on what constitutes a threat to the atmosphere’s ability to support life. I hold out hope that we can come to a common understanding of what threatens our climate stability. With that understanding we come to recognize that our common cause in generating a healthy economy to protect it.
Market Economy with accountability for impacts
I apply this value to evaluating policies that affect the economy and the environment. When a business can create profit from a process that creates an adverse impact that they are not responsible for, there is a profit incentive to create these impacts. When responsibility is linked to businesses and consumers, there is an incentive to creatively reduce those impact to reduce their cost and increase profit.
Please consider taking the
Do you believe the buildup of greenhouse gases generally, and Carbon Dioxide specifically is a problem?
Greenhouse gases affect the ability for the atmosphere to lose heat.
Carbon Dioxide is the gas that is released when we burn fossil fuels and plants. It is also released with decomposition of vegetation. Carbon Dioxide is not pollution. It is an essential part of the carbon cycle that allows life. We have observed that the buildup of carbon dioxide is steadily rising due to human activity.
Nature removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere through photosynthesis by converting it to vegetation (plants and algae). This is called sequestration.
For those of you that say, “No, the buildup of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is not a problem“,
you have a different perception of what is true leading to different options for building our future. I appeal to you to keep the conversation going. As your understanding evolves, I believe the day may come when you, too recognize the threat of these imbalances. That will be a great day when we can work together to address our shared common threat of net emissions greenhouse gases generally and carbon dioxide specifically into the atmosphere.
I say “Yes, the buildup of greenhouse gases generally and carbon dioxide specifically is a problem.”
Yet Carbon Dioxide is an essential component for life allowing the growth of plants that we depend on. Carbon dioxide is not pollution. It is the imbalance of emissions to sequestration (the amount that can be removed) that threatens us. This is a measurable math problem. Scientist are telling us that this rapid increase in heat retained in the environment will have a very disruptive impact on our climate and ecology which will also hurt our economic security. Understanding how to measure these threats gives us opportunity to structure the economy to solve this problem.
has projected that we need to achieve net zero by mid century to avoid the worst impacts of the accumulated greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. To achieve this goal, we need to reduce emissions to 50% of 2010 levels by 2030.
Net Zero means that the carbon dioxide emissions are equal to the amount that can be removed from the atmosphere by sequestration (primarily photosynthesis). All emissions are in the carbon cycle.
The foundation for solving this crisis is this common recognition.
To preserve and restore a healthy environment, we must limit our greenhouse gas emissions generally and carbon dioxide specifically to less what can be sequestered (removed from the atmosphere, primarily by photosynthesis).
This is a math problem.
The good news is that most of our human caused carbon dioxide emissions are captured by the net removal by natural processes making them in a carbon cycle.
The bad news is that the carbon dioxide emissions over the amount that can be removed, results in a continually increasing concentration in the atmosphere. The rate of increase is accelerating!!! How bad the impacts will be determined by how high the carbon dioxide and other greenhouses gases concentration in the atmosphere will get.
I support the policies that will create a
where emissions are below sequestration (the carbon dioxide that can be removed) with the difference lowering the atmospheric concentration. This is the ONLY WAY to lower atmospheric concentration of CO2.
Reducing emissions is the highest priority to address the Climate Crisis. Adding an initially low and incrementally increasing tax on carbon emissions, creates incentive for adaptations for both households and businesses to lower emissions with the minimum of regulations.
To make this tax revenue neutral, it can be combined with cutting another tax of equal amount to be revenue neutral as was done in British Columbia, Canada.
Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) is a policy that proposes to cap greenhouse gas emissions from electric power generation. The government issues limited license to emissions for power production that can be traded for electric generation within the states in the alliance. This is an attempt to address emissions in a measurable way through the policy concept of cap and trade. This is better than nothing. However, the improvements do not measure up to achieving net zero or net sequestration, even if all the world adopted this standard. I have concerns about granting license to current high emitters that they can sell when they make improvements to lower their emissions. This seems unfair.
My hope is that the policy discussion brings us a step closer to understanding the measure of emission compared to sequestration.
I support policies that move us towards a