Climate change and technology continue to advance. We’re getting a better understanding of the effects of our pollution and natural feedback mechanisms. Negative trends are accelerating. At the same time, technology is improving energy efficiency and lowering costs. Thanks to advances in renewable energy systems, the price of meeting net zero-emissions in the US has come down dramatically.
“The researchers estimate that the net cost of the transformation will be a total of $145 billion by 2050, which works out to be less than one-half percent of the GDP that year.” – Ars Technica
For perspective, compare that $145B over thirty years to the US Department of Defense’s budget of over $720B for one year, 2020.
Studies are building on studies. When Earth Day began, many knew something needed to be done. Since then, data and analyses, as well as advances in technology mean we are uncovering the full scope of the problem as well as identifying viable counter-measures. One insight from this study was that simply retiring existing aging fossil fuel power plants on schedule with renewable energy can have one of the greatest effects.