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Electrolight t1_j1a6r97 wrote

The frustrating thing is we could go climate neutral and then invest in carbon capture to stabilize the global climate. It's estimated to cost 3-4% of the global gdp for a while. But how much do we waste paying for energy, fuel, etc every year?

It's like the smoker just has to pay 4% to the hospital to live but he can't be fucked to do that either.


Alaishana t1_j1a9zg0 wrote

No, we could not.

There is absolutely no way on earth to do this. Neither do we have the tech, nor do we have the political mechanism to push this through.

This is just a pipe dream. Like a child talking about 'just' stopping all wars: The child does not understand the WHY.


Electrolight t1_j1aco3a wrote

You sound like every naysayers in 1900 who said we'd never fly. Or most of the world in 1960 that doubted humans would set foot on the moon.

The idiocy to just say, "whelp we're fucked" and bury your head in the sound is impressive. It's also no excuse.

We can tackle climate change, start culling ourselves, or let earth cull us. And I'm not sure I like the last 2.


dopechez t1_j1bu6qb wrote

I think we can definitely do a lot to help mitigate climate change but you did oversimplify and make it seem like it would be trivial and easy to reverse it. It's an enormous problem that encompasses all aspects of human society, it's literally the single biggest challenge humanity has ever collectively faced. And our carbon capture technology is simply nowhere close to being scalable, it's effectively a gimmick for now.


cambeiu t1_j1c3j86 wrote

COVID alone and the massive refusal of millions to wear masks, to social distance and vaccinate should give a glimpse of how difficult a coordinated global effort to curb CO2 emission would be. And in terms of collective cost and collective inconvenience, COVID is child' s play compared with what would need to be done to meaningfully reduce CO2 emissions.

The social turmoil, controversy and political toll we saw during COVID would be nothing compared to what we would see if there was serious global CO2 emission enforcement.


dopechez t1_j1c63bw wrote

Yeah and even simple things like "have a vegetarian meal a few times per week to reduce emissions and land use" cause outrage. It's going to be extremely difficult to get people to cooperate on this problem


The3rdGodKing t1_j1aws60 wrote

Flying is much simpler than solving climate change


Electrolight t1_j1bdcc3 wrote

In retrospect, it may seem that way. We'll think climate change is easy 20 years after neutrality too.


The3rdGodKing t1_j1bl4gd wrote

Are you sure, because I was planning on going to Canada?


cricket9818 t1_j1cwm95 wrote

Except everything being said is rooted in objective facts. We don’t have the tech and governments refuse to help the process forward


deathbystats t1_j1giu8z wrote

It has to do with timescales.

As an example, consider the world's population. It took only 70 years for the world to triple it's population (and some countries have seen a 6-fold increase in their population in that time).

There is no ethical way of exactly reversing that and reducing the population by a factor of 3 in 70 years. It will take at least 200, if not longer.

To get our carbon levels down to 1970 levels will take us much longer than 50 years. In the meantime the world will continue heating and secondary effects will kick in.


sillypicture t1_j1am1co wrote

Can you tell us the why? (Why we can't Carbon Capture or reverse this mess)


SoloDolo314 t1_j1bkmsg wrote

We cant scale carbon capture large enough yet. We would also need to completely overhaul the electrical grids but we don't yet have the battery capacity to sustain renewables. This would have had to start a decade ago and the technology just was not there yet.

I am sure if the world united together and invested everything into this it would be possibe. But Russia, China and India dont really give a damn about climate change right now.


cambeiu t1_j1c41rb wrote

Many reasons, but the simplest one is that it takes a lot of energy to trap carbon in large scale (both to build the machines and to run the machines). We are talking about a lot of carbon here. In 2020 alone the global CO2 output was 34 billion metric tons. This is a mind boggling large number. For machines to even make a dent on this we are talking about a lot of construction, in a scale humanity has never done before, and a lot of energy production, on a scale humanity has never done before.


Tall-Log-1955 t1_j1bfvii wrote

He's just here to call us children. His is not to explain why


Alaishana t1_j1j57ct wrote

I've been thinking about your question for a few days now, and I honestly don't know where to start.

All explanation are pointless, if you, as a person, are not able to see this for yourself.

There are a thousand things that 'could' be done in our dreams, but won't be done bc reality is different.

All wars 'could' be ended, if only all people would agree.
All poverty 'could' be wiped out, if only we could make the rich share.
All hungry ppl 'could' be fed, if only the rich nations would stop exploiting the poor ones and share.
All homeless 'could' be housed EASILY, if only politicians would see that it is actually cheaper than letting them lie on the street and could make their voters agree.

These are points that actually, factually, for real COULD happen, bc we could make them happen. If we were logical, rational beings... which we are not, of course.

Stopping climate change is another category all together: We CAN not stop it, bc our very lives depend on the machinery that causes it. There is no way any politician could stop this machinery, the idea is ridiculous. We are VERY far away from having the tech to decarbonize the atmosphere.

I feel like having to explain to my grandchildren why we have wars. There is no single, simple explanation, it takes years of learning about politics, emotions, history and most importantly HUMAN NATURE to understand why no one has managed to create world peace. It takes a web of understanding to get a handle on the mess we are in.

To get back to your question: in short: We don't have the tech, we don't have the energy or the materials to build it, even if we knew how, we don't have the political consensus that would allow us to invest in it, we don't have the international consensus and the vast majority of ppl does not even see the need.

In the end, bc we are human, we are ONLY human, we are a type of chimpanzee with a slightly enlarged frontal neo-cortex. We hit on the trick of how to share info vertically (through time) and horizontally (between ppl) and this created a tension between what we understand and can do as a group and what we understand and can do as individuals... so that our power as group is vastly superior and we as individuals have lost control of the group entity we have created. And there is NO WAY out of this.

in short: humanity is smart, humans are stupid.


sillypicture t1_j1j8p0x wrote

Thanks for the very involved reply!

I have no issue with the assessment that the are no politicians or even a collective of them, that can put together the momentum to affect a useful change within a generation.

However, as one that is working in a field that is trying to address climate change, i am cautiously optimistic with our currently available technology, and that there is enough material and other necessary resources (perhaps less so with time).

It is political momentum and actual allocated resources that are proving to be bottlenecks.

Also, i submit that humans as a collective (humanity) are both stupid and smart.

I'm curious though, how do you actually explain to your grandchildren things about war and homelessness and hunger, and why we haven't been able to address them?


Alaishana t1_j1jgshl wrote

My oldest is four, so not quite there yet. Her bunny just died... this is the first little bit that she has to digest to understand.

No one can simply in short words explain to a child the why of wars. This necessitates a huge web of understanding and a child that asks this question is just about to pick up the first thread of this web.

Where do you even start? (You start with what's in front of you, of course.)

With every subject, you have to back up... If you touch politics e.g., you have to SLOWLY make her understand what politics is (not many ppl understand this at all), and why what we see on an international level grows out of group dynamics that play out even in the family, in the classroom. Grows out of chimp group dynamics, in the end.

All this takes time. she will have to grow into the understanding as she grows up.

And the most important part will take a very long time indeed: To see how the seed of all our problems lies within all of us. Not bc we are somehow 'evil', but bc we are human.

A monkey brain riding on a mammalian brain, riding on a reptile brain, riding on a fish brain. We can't just discard who we are. And true understanding won't come before a person sees all this in themselves and is able to accept it as 'yes, this is me'.

All our understanding will forever be partial. No one can grasp the whole, it is too big, too convoluted, we have too much resistance, bc we do not like what we see.

So to answer your question:

I drilled this into my kids from earliest childhood on:

How do you eat an elephant?

Bit by bit by bit!