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According to Joseph Romm, “Climate change will have a bigger impact on your family and friends and all of humanity than the Internet has had.”
And not in a good way.
If the implications (not the science, which I support and believe, but the devastation that could come to our civilization) of Mr. Romm’s statement are true, it stands to reason that:
- This climate change problem is a massive problem that exists and needs fixing.
- There is good money to be made by entrepreneurs building businesses that legitimately help solve that problem.
It seems obvious, but I think these are facts that are lost on most people. Climate change has become an emotional topic, even though I would guess that 95% of people could not properly articulate the difference between climate change and weather.
To me the political partisanship over climate change is uniquely stupid… This is because the economic benefits that can come to the United States, our economy and American jobs by embracing a shift away from fossil fuels toward renewable energy means: 1) energy independence, 2) cutting waste, 3) making things run more efficiently and 4) promoting domestic clean energy jobs… These are supposed to be core Republican issues with deep roots in American beliefs of “freedom” and “Don’t Tread on Me”. Indeed, if Reagan was in office, I suspect he would be all over tackling solving the climate change problem – just as he was with protecting the ozone layer. Or if Bush were in office today, he might confront the negative effects of climate change as he did with the passing the EPAct.
The best way to contemplate climate change and its impacts are to assume that they are real, regardless of your politics, because of the short term, mid term and long term benefits of solving the problem.
Elon Musk is the high profile example of an entrepreneur building a business out of solving this problem. But you don’t need to be an Elon Musk… Examples of businesses that you can get into that can help reduce the impacts of climate change are: solar PV or solar thermal, wind, energy efficiency, green bonds, residential and commercial PACE financing models, green mortgage lending, LEED certification, green building education, professional energy efficiency training, energy modeling, commissioning, retro-commissioning, recommissioning, building retrofits, window replacement, insulation, HVAC upgrades, lighting retrofits, LED lighting, smart sensors and controls, geothermal heating and cooling systems, electric and hybrid vehicles, battery charging technologies, energy storage, passive house design, Net Zero building design, green data centers, healthy indoor environmental quality solutions, water efficiency, rainwater storage, hydro and wave renewable energy solutions, recycling technologies, waste to energy conversions, Stormwater management, green financial consulting, etc.
There is money to be made from solving the climate change problem, or you can choose to ride the decline of civilization in some unproductive way. Obviously the sustainable choice is the former: Make money and save the planet.