Monday, August 23, 2010

Thomas Friedman, The need for a greener world and some latest developments (I)

Lately I have read the entire and updated (2.0 version)  of Thomas Friedman's book "Hot, Flat and crowded",   
Taking it from his own website,
"...Now Friedman brings a fresh outlook to the crises of destabilizing climate change and rising competition for energy—both of which could poison our world if we do not act quickly and collectively. His argument speaks to all of us who are concerned about the state of America in the global future.

Friedman proposes that an ambitious national strategy—which he calls "Geo-Greenism"—is not only what we need to save the planet from overheating; it is what we need to make America healthier, richer, more innovative, more productive, and more secure"

In my opinion Friedman's book is still one of the most accessible but at the same time incisive and well researched books aound the problem and magnitude of the badly called (probably one of the worst naming strategies ever as the name does more harm that anything to the cause) Global Warming and to propose a number of initiatives, taking his points on how America (USA) can lead these changes

Being this one of my key personal and professional issues and having even as a company (Bite) taking a stand on green strategies I can recommend this reading

Interesting enough there a couple of development around 2 of the key ideas of Friedman's book: how to legislate on the US side (on the part of the book about Code Green) the Co2 emissions using price signals and secondly what he calls the "black box" or smartgrid

Chapter13 - The stone age didn't end because we run out of stones (you probably get the idea from the title right?) -
Basically the main point of the chapter is the need for the government to step in to make the polluting (and before some of you debates why, just think how the governments have stepped in to help people stop smoking - with taxes and education) fuels expensive enough and there are several options to do this, but at the end the options are a "direct" carbon tax or an indirect tax through a cap and trade system. As many of you know this summer the Obama's government failed to have approved through Senate the cap and trade proposed system

I really see this as a total failure of the US to see its won decadence and to recognize how f.... up they are and how this could be the only opportunity to get back at the lead (because the Chinese are going to take care of this issue in terms of leadership also). Furthermore while I am not happy really with Obama lack of strong stand on this one (did he used all of it on the health care reform battle) or if some of my friends the system (who designed a system that does not help your country to take or make the right decisions?), it is time to look at the future
First I don;t believe on the cap and trade as much as I believe the real effective measure is to apply a carbon tax. I think the cap and trade is dead, but I believe that the government will be back in 2 to 3 years and this time it will be with a carbon tax
Secondly is that most of the necessary regulation could come from the federal agencies imposing different measures and limits on emissions and other urgent and necessary regulations

By the way, on this point, I love the harsh and direct David Roberts blog post right after teh bill did not pass the senate and don't miss the follow up comments (really really interesting)
Link to David Roberts "On the death of the Climate Bill"

No comments:

Post a Comment