It’s Not Too Late

One of the main themes of Climate Progress is that we have the technologyies available to avoid the worst of global warming–but only if we start using them now. So it was heartening to see the recent cover story, “It’s Not Too Late,” in one of the country’s leading technology magazines, MIT’s Technology Review, drive this theme home from its very first line: “The energy technologies that might forestall global warming already exist.”

Conservatives, led by the Bush administration, try to convince the public we can’t act now by arguing that we must wait for new technologies, as in this recent quote from John H. Marburger III, the president’s science adviser: “It’s important not to get distracted by chasing short-term reductions in greenhouse emissions. The real payoff is in long-term technological breakthroughs.” No, let’s not get distracted by the actual solution to the problem.

I think I had some impact on Technology Review’s coverage, since they picked up the theme from my keynote talk at an M.I.T. energy conference in April. The introductory article in the magazine ends:

But we cannot wait any longer for new technologies, as Joseph Romm, an Energy Department renewable-energy official during President Clinton’s administration, made clear at a conference in April. “The point is,” he said, “whatever technology we’ve got now — that’s what we are stuck with to avoid catastrophic warming.”

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