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Sensible Climate policy
#1
Climate change is just as much an economic issue as it is a scientific and social issue that will impact the lives of billions. Many policy proposals have arisen to attempt to combat this issue, but many have been dismissed or fall short. The advent of a "green new deal" has sparked conversation about tackling climate change seriously, but the policy proposal is more so a manifesto that bundles policies unrelated to climate change, than it is a serious and fast acting legislative package to combat the issue. I have my own green new deal, one that the majority of people could probably agree on and would be very affordable.

1) Levy a broad based tax on carbon, methane, and other green house gases at a level of at least $36 by 2020 (Norhaus 2018), possibly higher and increase it every year until it reaches a level of at least $53.39 by 2025 (in 2005 dollars). Over 3400 economists agree with this: https://www.clcouncil.org/economists-statement/ (plus a dividend which I describe below).  Do the following with the revenue (possibly adding revenue from other sources as well if need be)
     a) A dividend to lower income households to offset the regressivity of the tax.
     b) Increase ARPA-E funding by 60 times from about 500 million USD to 30 billion so that they're empowered to do extensive research into zero emission energy technology and carbon capture mechanisms
     c) Create ARPA-A as a agency within the Department of Agriculture to research how to reduce carbon emissions from agricultural practices, but especially livestock farming.
     d) Create ARPA-I for R&D in carbon free manufacturing practices in cement, steel, plastics, and more
     e) A rebate for those who capture carbon
2) Zoning deregulation and upzoning to promote urban density as well as more energy efficient building codes. Peter Calthorpe estimated that increasing urban density alone in the US could help us reach half of the paris climate targets. There was also an estimate that pro-density housing and pro-transit policies could help cities cut emissions by a third (Cohen 2018).
3) Large subsidies for low carbon retrofitting of existing power grids, smart grid technology, batteries, and solar technology. These subsidies will be phased out completely after a thriving market is created.
4) Eliminate all subsidies and tax breaks for fossil fuel companies and enact high dirty energy tariffs

This is far from a perfect proposal, but its one that is realistic and would help curb the cost of climate change significantly.


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.pdf   pol.20170046.pdf (Size: 795.59 KB / Downloads: 0)
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#2
It is pretty funny how those in opposition to the idea of climate change don't realize that if we start acting, it wouldn't necessarily take a whole lot. However, the longer we punt this ball down the field, the more radical change will have to become to combat climate change.
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#3
On one of Joe Rogan's recent podcast, he has had a journalist who has been covering climate change for quiet awhile. The journalist was saying that at this point, we can not avoid the 2 degree threshold, so now we act not to mitigate the 2 degree threshold, but to mitigate us going too far past the 2 degree threshold.
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