Capitalism even helps the religion of global climate change

For the sake of discussion, assume that we are completely convinced that human-driven CO2 emissions must be reduced and that we, as a society, are willing to spend some of our limited funds for that.  Key word: Limited.  (If you can make the case that we have unlimited resources I’d like to hear it). 

If that is the case, wouldn’t it be logical to ask which programs are most cost-effective in reducing emissions?  Courtesy of Forbes Magazine, consider this disparity in the cost per ton of avoided CO2:

A. The Cash for Clunkers program — $1,700

B. Subsidizing electric cars — $250

C. Pay an electric utility to reduce coal consumption by burning clean natural gas — $20

Unless you like spending 10 times or upwards of 100 times as much as you have to for something, I’d encourage you to go with the last option.  You won’t release as many endorphins and get as much press, but you’ll be doing the right thing.

0 thoughts on “Capitalism even helps the religion of global climate change”

  1. I don’t know what the underlying calculations are for the $1700, but it was my understanding that because of the CO2 produced in building a new car, the net carbon savings in the cash for clunkers program was minimal, if not negative.

    Also, electric cars just mean trading emission from the vehicle’s exhaust with emission from the coal power plant needed to give the car electricity. However, this increased demand may make renewable, cleaner electricity sources more financially competitive and no longer in need of subsidies. Evil capitalism at work again.


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