Immediate pushback is a healthy sign of debate
Elon Musk is one of the most interesting humans, and now he is also, at any given moment, the wealthiest. It’s somewhat unusual, even on Twitter, to see anything but positive and supportive reactions to his tweets, given the level of love and admiration he has among followers.
Add to that the concrete, if cryptic, pledge to donate 100M towards a prize for the “best carbon capture tech. It has been pointed out that this is .05% of his net worth, but that is an odd calculation, it seems, since Tesla itself is firmly on the side of climate rescue, with it’s stated mission to “to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy”.
It is, as a matter of fact, what separates Musk from almost every other tech-billionaire: His motivations are not to acquire wealth as an end but only to support his planet and species saving efforts. Others, such as his sometimes rival (not worthy) Jeff Bezos, can not claim any such thing with a straight face (or any believability).
The reactions were swift and attempted humor but also truth
The number of replies that popped up swiftly proposing planting trees as likely the best “carbon capture tech” that would deserve such a prize was noteworthy. Because, in one of the few criticisms of the EV revolution that Tesla has started, it is likely not enough to rely solely on “S3XY” technology to save the world from carbon emissions causing global warming and climate change.
Not only is the plant-a-tree a valid rejoinder to the idea that some kind of elaborate technological breakthrough is needed (Bill Gates recently suggested blotting out the sun as a cooling solution), but there are also other “low tech” solutions that should not get short-shrift in order to fund expensive, possibly overly technological, solutions to a problem of our own making.
The recent highly acclaimed documentary film “Kiss the Ground” proposes soil regeneration to reduce carbon emission, improve health benefits of food and, at the same time actually reduce the amount of carbon already in the atmosphere.
The arguments made by this excellent documentary beg the question: why not take funds, such as those being offered by Elon Musk, and divert them first towards obvious, low-tech solutions with proven results, rather than funding a moon-shot style tech search for a method that may, in then end, like so much that has come before, have unintended and even possibly negative repercussions.
At the very least, shouldn’t a portion of this 100 million, or even an equal sum (purportedly amounting to, therefore, 1% rather than .05% of Musks net worth) be allocated to existing, proven methods, rather than a search for new tech invented out of whole cloth?
Twitter posts hit a nerve, now maybe government and private funding should follow common sense
This is not a scientific or detail specific criticism. There may well be “issues” with planting trees or recovering damages soil around the world, and in the process reversing carbon imbalances and even reducing the levels currently measured.
But common sense says otherwise. The destruction of the soil and the deforestation of the globe are part and parcel of the same problem, extreme dependence on fossil fuel long after the dangers were well known, that has caused the current and worsening global problem.
Elon Musk is a hero of the sustainable energy movement, as he well should be. It is powerful and dedicated figures like Musk that are needed, desperately, to solve the looming and already unfolding crises that we face.
The voices for trees and soil regeneration are also an extremely important element of the solutions that are desperately needed, sans the hoopla and massive money prize that tech already has attached.
Would it be too far fetched, @elonmusk, for these various factions, all wanting the same result, to cooperate and collaborate on all the solutions that will undoubtedly be required is we are to pull back from the brink and substantially improve the condition of a planet on its way to possible total annihilation?
Read more: Climate Crisis Coverage by Lynxotic
Thanks to Elon Musk for all his contributions and they are many. Rescuing the E.V. and turning the entire auto industry on it’s head and bringing about an accelerating transition to sustainable transportation much sooner than could have happened without him and Tesla.
Creating the understanding that a business and an entrepreneur does not have to focus relentlessly on profit for its own sake to be successful and powerful. And, as for giving the human species a “plan-b” in the form of abandoning a dying earth in favor of Mars, let’s stick with plan A for now and plant trees, reiterate the soil and, yes, find other solutions to the massive carbon emissions that are choking the life out of our world.
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