Sunday, March 30, 2014

What Exceptional Nations Do

From the NY Times article on the WGII:
“I think that dealing effectively with climate change is just going to be something that great nations do,” said Christopher B. Field, co-chairman of the working group that wrote the report, and an earth scientist at the Carnegie Institution for Science in Stanford, Calif.
For added punch in America, replace the word "great" with "exceptional...."

1 comment:

J Melcher said...

When the consensus and international treaties suggest prevention efforts, taxes, financial trading schemes, and low-energy density economies targeted at one specific threat; exceptional nations will instead develop strategies, resources, and a culture of rapid-response to mitigate a wide range of threats.

It will be tragic for the world if NO nation or society can withstand
non-climate related disasters for which we have recently had "warning shots. I think

tsunami ( )

meteor strike


vaccine-resistant or unavailable epidemics

And of course war and revolution.

(too many for Wikipedia to list but off the top of my head including Ukraine, Syria, Libya, Egypt, Sudan, Nigeria, Mali, Burma...)

The sort of great mind that focuses on temperature increases, sea level rise, and ice-habitat reductions at the end of this century, to the exclusion of genocide and disaster yesterday and tomorrow, frankly boggles my tiny little mind.

Not to complain without making a concrete suggestion -- the United States plans to "retire" several nuclear aircraft carriers in the coming decade. Somewhat surprisingly, this front-loads a bunch of expenses into the current fiscal periods that would otherwise, (if the carriers continued to operate) be spread out (at a higher total) over many later periods.

How would great minds eager to prevent existential threats to the planet, life itself, endangered species, humanity, and western civilization (in decreasing order of scale of expected victims of "climate change") feel about keeping floating rapid-response resources operating via an international effort to support
a fleet of "Hope Ships" after the fashion of, but perhaps with a new and independent command over, the example set by Project Hope.

Is is cynical of me to expect that those terrified by global warming and nuclear technology would rather promote (and dontate money towards) windmills and electric cars than floating hospitals?