Andy Revkin helpfully points to a new report (PDF) from the Information Technology and Information Foundation, which seeks to expose 10 myths of global climate change. Here they are:
1) Higher prices on greenhouse gases are enough to drive the transition to a clean economyThis list is remarkably compatible with the arguments I set forth in The Climate Fix. In fact, Chapter 2 is titled, What We Know for Sure, But Just Ain't So. You can see from the imagery above where the inspiration came from for that chapter title ;-) My book has a few others not on this list as well.
Reality: Better price signals are helpful, but not sufficient in significantly reducing GHG.
2) The U.S. can make major contributions to solving climate change on its own
Reality: The energy needs of the rest of the world will result in them producing the lion’s share of GHG; any solution must be one that is able to be adopted by every nation in the absence of regulation or energy taxes.
3) Cap-and-trade is a sustainable global solution
Reality: As Copenhagen showed, a global agreement is not likely, and the only solution that can meet 50 the percent reduction of GHG is making non-carbon alternatives as cheap and functional as fossil fuels.
4) We don’t need innovation; we have all the technology we need
Reality: Current technology is woefully inadequate in reaching the needed 85 percent carbon reduction efficiency.
5) “Insulation is enough” (e.g. energy efficiency will save us)
Reality: Even the most optimistic estimates suggest energy efficiency measures will only provide one-quarter of the levels of GHG reductions that the United States needs to effectively address climate change.
6) Low growth is the answer…just live simply
Reality: Neither living simply nor a massive recession will enable us to obtain the level of reductions required.
7) Information technology (ITIT) is a significant contributor to climate change
Reality: A digital world leads to less energy use, not more.
8) Going green is green (e.g., it makes economic sense to go green)
Reality: With current technology, it often costs money to go green.
9) We are world leaders on the green economy, and it’s ours for the taking
Reality: Other countries got in on the ground floor and are already out pacing us.
10) Foreign green mercantilism is good for solving climate change (and good for the U.S.)
Reality: Foreign mercantilism reduces needed clean energy innovation and hurts U.S. industry and jobs.