The same voices that are simultaneously telling us that it is not real, or it is a conspiracy, or natural cycles, or that it will be good for us, are also the voices that tell us that the solutions will ruin our economies. Climate Scientists tell us no such things.
Climate change counter-movement funding of $900 million a year has created a climate science disconnection that has delayed action on climate pollution for nearly 20 years. These efforts have created a basic mistrust of climate science that has also masked the solutions.
Using existing technologies and proposed policy, the solutions will cost about one percent of annual global national product. This $500 billion per year may seem like a lot but it is the same as what sick days cost U.S. business every year, or the cost of the U.S. Clean Air or Clean Water Acts, the cost of advertising across the globe every year, or the cost of the U.S. military budget every year not counting wars. It would cost about the same as we have spent across the globe every year for about a century treating toilet pollution.
Using field proven new technologies, the cost to remove 50 ppm CO2 from our atmosphere and end the climate change crisis for a generation or more will cost about $7 trillion, or what the U.S. spent on health care from 2000 through 2004.
The benefits of the solutions however are clear and certain. Using existing technologies in New York State, a $500 billion 20-year investment in a clean energy infrastructure would result in $114 billion in annual savings and profits above a fossil fuel economy.
It’s only pollution. Addressing climate change does not necessarily mean we must give up fossil fuels any more than when we realized that toilet pollution was devastating our waters in the 1960s and 1970s meant that we would have to give up going to the bathroom. We have choices. We can keep our SUVs and treat climate pollution like the pollution it is, or we can convert our economy to clean energy sources and realize savings and profits of trillions of dollars every year.