The Obstacles We Need To Overcome
The True Cost Of Carbon
Our current system of measuring what is good for us and what is bad for us is deeply flawed. At present, global warming pollution—indeed, all pollution—is described by economists as a negative “externality.” In public discussions, this technical economic term has come to mean: we don’t want to keep track of this stuff, so let’s pretend it doesn’t exist.
Carbon dioxide, the most important source of global warming pollution, is invisible, tasteless, and odorless. It is largely invisible to market calculations as well. And when something’s not recognized in the marketplace, it’s much easier for government, business, and all the rest of us to pretend that it doesn’t exist. But what we’re pretending doesn’t exist is destroying the habitability of the planet. We put 90 million tons of it into the atmosphere every 24 hours, and the amount is increasing decade by decade.