To preserve a livable climate, we need technology deployment. That’s what drives innovation, as Gates himself used to argue.
So I listened to Bill Gates’ TED Speech a few hours after he gave it in Long Beach, CA. Let’s just call that an IT miracle.
It wasn’t 80% crap like his recent piece on energy.
Quite the reverse, it was more like a miraculous ice cream cone made up of 80% homemade chocolate-chocolate chip ice cream and only 20% bat guano. Curiously, the guano kind of stands out when you lick it, and that’s what people talk about.
Since TED is all hush-hush, most people get only the snippets the media shares, such as HuffPost’s headline: “Bill Gates’ TED Speech 2010: ‘We Need Energy Miracles’.” Mongabay.com reported:
Gates said the world needs to reduce carbon emissions to zero by 2050 and suggested researchers spent the next 20 years developing new technologies and the follow 20 years implementing them.
But I’ve got the scoop for you — and I’ll post the transcript when I get it.
Yes, Bill Gates keeps diminishing the value of aggressive action now, which is just plain suicidal. We need both massive technology deployment now and much more innovation. But the former is the sine qua non for having any chance to preserve a livable climate. Ironically, the former is also the key to the latter, something Gates himself used to argue. Strangely, Gates strongly praises Gore’s book even though its main thrust is directly at odds with Gates’.
This post will:
- Look at what’s good in the speech.
- Explain why “Energy Miracles” are widely overrated as a strategy for preserving a livable climate.
- Explain why tech deployment is the key to the kind of innovation Gates wishes for.
- Raise the issue some technologists have raised with me: Is Gates is a hypocrite?