Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Cheaper than terraforming Mars, in any case

A report on the McKinsey Quarterly (free reg. required) describing abatement costs for greenhouse gases. It's fascinating stuff; for example, the cheaper tons of atmospheric carbon to get rid off (before they are released to the atmosphere, that is) are those that come from developing countries, which doesn't require new tech, but instead coordinated efforts in many countries and industries, some of then highly fragmented. As the report coyly indicates, the politics of this might be challenging.

The bottom line: I think it's economically feasible to stabilize our impact in climate patterns with mature or soon-to-be-mature technology (in the sense that it'd be cheaper that enduring the costs of said climate changes). That doesn't mean it will get done, as the costs and benefits might not be quite aligned yet.

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