Does geoengineering have a place in our policy toolbox?
Alex Steffen"If geoengineering research is going to happen at all, it should be rigorous, transparent, and not proprietary. It may indeed be a very bad idea. But it will certainly be a bad idea if the equivalent of, say, a Mark Zuckerberg gets control of it."
BP also announced in mid-June it would write down as much as $17.5 billion on its assets.
Alex SteffenShell's $22B write-down is a milestone event.
Few in fossil fuel industries "would even countenance ideas of climate risk, peak demand, stranded assets, liquidation business models & so on. Today, companies are building strategies around these ideas."
Australia's Reserve Bank endorses warning from 66 central banks that unless international climate policies are ramped up the economy will take a dramatic hit.
Alex SteffenUnless climate action is "drastically more ambitious" climate change impacts will "cause global GDP to fall by 25 per cent by 2100," banks warn.
There is no tension between action and human prosperity.
The opposite: Delay is costing us, massively.
A Security Threat Assessment of Global Climate Change: A Product of the National Security, Military and Intelligence Panel on Climate Change Washington, DC, February 24, 2020 — In a comprehensive r…
Alex SteffenNot just a crisis for poor people.
Wealthy nations "face significant threats at all levels of warming [and] could experience catastrophic security risks, including high levels of migration and breakdowns of key infrastructure and security institutions."
More than half of the world’s biggest pension funds yet to allocate capital to the strategy
Alex SteffenOutdated expertise is getting expensive:
"Adapting to global warming remains a profound challenge for many institutional investors as widely used risk models are backward looking and ill-equipped to anticipate problems..."
New research shows plunging renewable energy prices mean wind, solar, and energy storage can provide 90% of U.S. electricity by 2035 - at no extra cost.
Alex SteffenContinuing to burn fossil fuels *costs* us money. A lot of money.
"Plummeting wind, solar, and storage prices have fallen so fast that the United States can reach 90% clean electricity by 2035—without raising customer costs at all from today’s levels..."
Over the past decade, a compelling body of evidence has linked a range of extreme weather events to human-caused climate change.
Alex SteffenResearch finds "conventional economic models for the cost of climate change" vastly underestimate the actual direct costs of the climate emergency...
and routinely ignore risks carried by the kinds of complex interconnections common in the real world.
Climate sensitivity to atmospheric CO2 levels is likely to be high.
Alex SteffenIn this sentence are terrors hidden:
"Hence, instead of being able to discount estimates of high sensitivity, as Rodwell and I had done, their result provides some of the best current evidence that climate sensitivity could indeed be 5°C or greater."
Wise public policy can still limit the scale of the eventual climate disaster.
Alex SteffenThis @ForeignAffairs climate issue's smart, well-crafted, & would've been mainstream-but-provocative 10 years ago.
The problem is, it still ahead of the curve compared to most of today's climate coverage.
A lost decade of cultural stagnation.
The pandemic has hit Germany hard, with more than 91,000 people infected. But the percentage of fatal cases has been remarkably low compared to those in many neighboring countries.
Alex SteffenGovernment matters. Facts matter. Professional competence matters. Community cohesion matters. Journalistic quality matters. Equity in health care matters.
Germany is experiencing the same pandemic.
They're not experiencing the same catastrophe.
Alex Steffen"But by the time the true scale of the problem becomes clear, it’s far too late. The disaster—a crisis of political legitimacy, a coronavirus pandemic, a climate catastrophe—doesn’t so much break the system as show just how broken the system already was."
It is more important than ever that we eliminate fossil fuels and reduce suffering in a warming world
Alex SteffenMust-read new piece from @jeffgoodell:
"In this new world, there are no solutions — only better and worse choices about where we will live, how we will live, who and what will survive, and who and what will be lost."
Social distancing is the only way to stop the coronavirus. We must start immediately.
Alex SteffenMost of my income comes from giving keynote talks at conferences and being an invited expert at workshops and retreats.
So when I say it, please know that I understand what's at stake: