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So, Jeff Bezos, do you really want to fix the planet?

But scientists have already developed more powerful tools to catalog CO2 admissions, at least: a project called Vulcan has become so comprehensive that it can model emissions block by block in Los Angeles. The Vulcan developer also used the tool to show that, on average, U.S. cities are underreporting their greenhouse gases emissions by nearly 20 percent. So, in general, local authorities need to have a better idea of ​​where their city’s broadcasts are coming from.

While it is cheaper than ever to reduce these emissions, given falling solar and wind prices, the United States also has an infrastructure problem: our national grid is not designed for the transmission of electricity across the country. We have the construction of solar power facilities in the sunny southwest and the construction of wind farms on the east coast. But when the sun goes down, the west cannot draw wind power from the east, and when the wind is not blowing, the east cannot draw power from the west. “The intermittent nature of their generation really means that they need a lot of complementary technologies to reach their full potential,” says Hausfather. large batteries to store excess energy, to be used when conditions turn against any type of energy production.

The temptation will be to spend money on cutting edge science that will help us get out of this mess, especially negative emission technologies. One promising technique is known as direct air capture, or DAC: giant machines suck the air, rub it CO2, then sequester that carbon underground forever. Yes, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change notes that if we are to meet the 1.5 degree target, we duty deploy these concepts of negative emissions. But DAC is a tool, not a solution in itself. First and foremost, humanity needs to reduce its emissions levels dramatically and quickly.

Bezos should also think about how solutions can involve a wide range of people, lest they risk leaving certain groups behind. “The people most affected by climate change and structural inequalities are in the best position to implement equitable climate solutions,” says Elizabeth Sawin, co-director of Climate Interactive, which advocates for equitable solutions to climate change. (His group also did not receive any money from the Bezos Earth Fund.) “Are the funds going for campaigns led by people in communities most affected by climate change? Are the dollars going to organizations and movements led by people of color, workers, women and immigrants? “

The Bezos Earth Fund has so far given $ 151 million to several groups focused on environmental justice, including Climate and Clean Energy Equity Fund and the Hive Fund for Climate and Gender Justice. Both will award grants to groups that focus on issues that involve intersecting climatic and racial issues.

When it comes to climate inequality, low-income Americans and people of color, for example, are more likely to live in “urban heat islands. The poorest urban neighborhoods generally have less green space than the suburbs. And when the sun’s energy hits a city’s concrete and asphalt landscape, all buildings and streets absorb heat and slowly release it at night. The greenery of the suburbs, on the other hand, actually refreshes the area.

Another element of strategic financing, according to Sawin, is to deploy “multi-isolation” techniques to solve multiple problems at once. So for example, employing city dwellers greening their neighborhoods puts money in their pockets and prepares their cities for heat waves linked to climate change. Sawin says organizers should ask, “Do the strategies reduce emissions while creating jobs, or cleaner air, or conserving water, or reducing electricity bills for those on fixed incomes?” “

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