Lots of people have lots of good ideas. But, as every venture capitalist knows, before a good idea can be brought to the marketplace, an entrepreneur needs to formulate a detailed business plan that prices out every cost associated with the development of the idea into a marketable product. After all, venture capitalists reason, why invest in what may be good idea but is one that's going absolutely nowhere in the market place?
Even good venture capitalists lose money on some investments, but they are not in business to go broke. In contrast, the federal government can always raise taxes to make up for those losses, like the ~$17T debt it has currently piled up.
So, The Motley Monk suggests taking a moment to engage in a little mental experiment because the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will be presenting a summary of its most recent assessment on September 26. It's the fifth report in the past 23 years. (FYI: The IPCC is once predicted that all Himalayan glaciers would be gone in 2035, when the more likely date is 2350.)
The experiment: Let's pretend that global warming is for real. Driven by capitalism, human beings have pushed the globe's climate system up to the edge and might soon push it over the edge. "Omigosh! Something must be done!" the throngs are crying out. So, let's invest in putting an end to global warming.
What's the cost going to be?
According to Bjorn Lomborg in his article "Global Warming Without Fear," the European Union will pay $250B for its current climate policies each year for the next 87 years. That's a total of $20T paid to end the purported menace of global warming by the European Union alone. It doesn't include what the United States will pay, if President Obama gets his way with carbon tax credits and other policies. And who knows what China--one of the globe's biggest polluters--will pay?
What will that $20T accomplish?
Temperatures across the globe by the 2100 will be reduced by 0.05 °C. For the mathematically challenged, that's less than one half of one half of one degree (5 one hundredths) or a cool $4T/one hundredth of degree of temperature change.
In short, despite what those who worship at the altar of environmentalism purport, this mental experiment suggests that this idea is too expensive. Why? It will have virtually no impact on climate change.
The Motley Monk proposes another, very good idea: Congress approves the Keystone XL Pipeline. The nation's energy needs are solved for the short term (perhaps 300 years). Meanwhile, entrepreneurs develop new ideas and venture capitalists fund those ideas to see what will work in the real world. And, the costs shift away from taxpayers to the public marketplace.
Let the discussion begin...
To read Bjorn Lomborg's article, click on the following link:
"Global Warming Without Fear"