The Citizen's Guide to Climate Success; Overcoming Myths that Hinder Progress by Mark Jaccard
Mark Jaccard is a professor of sustainable energy in the School of Resource and Environmental Management (REM) at Simon Fraser University. He develops and applies models that assess sustainability policies for energy and material.
Humanity has failed for three decades to decarbonize our energy system to address the climate threat, yet average citizens still don’t know what to do personally or what to demand from their politicians.
For climate success, we need to understand the combined role of self-interested and wishful thinking biases that prevent us from acting effectively and strategically.
Fossil fuel and other interests delude us about climate science or try to convince us that every new fossil fuel investment is beneficial.
But even climate-concerned people propagate myths that hinder progress, holding to beliefs that all countries will agree voluntarily on sharing the cost of global decarbonization; that carbon offsets are effective; that behavioral change is critical; that energy efficiency and renewable energy are cheap; and that carbon taxes are absolutely essential.
For success with the climate-energy challenge, we must strategically focus our efforts as citizens on a few key domestic sectors (especially electricity and transportation), a few key policies (regulations and/or carbon pricing); and the identification and election of climate-sincere politicians.
As leading countries decarbonize their domestic electricity and transportation sectors, they must use various measures, including carbon tariffs, to ensure that their efforts spill over to affect the efforts of all countries.
And although wealthier countries are unlikely to provide the support that developing countries desire to forego dependence on coal and oil, the combination of tariff threats and the local air pollution and climate benefits from decarbonization will motivate efforts even in these poorer countries.
This book offers a clear and simple strategic path for climate-concerned citizens to drive climate success by acting locally while thinking globally.