Elizabeth Kolbert on Climate Change: Impacts and Mitigation Technologies – #33

Steve and Corey talk to Elizabeth Kolbert, author of the Sixth Extinction, about the current state of the climate debate. All three are pessimistic about the possibility that emissions will be substantively reduced in the near term, and they discuss technologies for removing carbon from the atmosphere. They explore uncertainty in the models regarding temperatures rise and precipitation, and contemplate a billion people are on the move in response to climate change and population increase. They ask: what is more of a threat to humanity in the coming century, runaway AI or runaway climate change?

Timothy Searchinger: Biofuels vs Foods and Major Climate Change Policy Errors – #23

Steve and Corey talk to Tim Searchinger about the unintended consequences of biofuels policies. Searchinger argues that these policies do not consider the opportunity costs of using plants for fuel rather than food. Combined with crazy carbon accounting principles, existing rules make cutting down trees in the US, shipping them to Europe and burning them in power plants count as carbon neutral under the Kyoto protocol. The three also discuss how eating less beef in the developed world along with educating women, family planning, and reducing child mortality in the developing world can decrease stress on land use and emissions.

Timothy Searchinger: Biofuels vs Foods and Major Climate Change Policy Errors – #23

Steve and Corey talk to Tim Searchinger about the unintended consequences of biofuels policies. Searchinger argues that these policies do not consider the opportunity costs of using plants for fuel rather than food. Combined with crazy carbon accounting principles, existing rules make cutting down trees in the US, shipping them to Europe and burning them in power plants count as carbon neutral under the Kyoto protocol. The three also discuss how eating less beef in the developed world along with educating women, family planning, and reducing child mortality in the developing world can decrease stress on land use and emissions.

Transcript: Timothy Searchinger: Biofuels vs Foods and Major Climate Change Policy Errors – #23

Steve: Thanks for joining us. I’m Steve Hsu. Corey: And I’m Corey Washington. And we’re your hosts for Manifold.Our guest today is Timothy Searchinger. Tim is a research scholar at the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University in the Science Technology and Environmental Policy program. Though trained as a lawyer, Tim’s work today encompasses ecology, […]