Climate Tipping Points

If you have not yet watched “Climate Tipping Points” on BBC this week (Radio 4, 1.45pm) please do so now.

It should have terrified you. It explains, in 5 instalments, how humans are destroying the Ecosphere (not an expression used in the series, but it means the only place where life is possible).

I cannot fault it, except by claiming that this weblog means it is not necessarily inevitable.

The unconditional basic income (UBI) is my suggested catalyst, yet unless tied very firmly to zero   growth the UBI will inevitably accelerate growth towards the tipping points.

Another programme I recommend is Martin Sandbu’s defence of economic growth as perfectly possible with a World (Ecosphere) which observes ecological limits. Sandbu appears to refute the whole basis of ‘Tipping Points’

Again I can find no fault with his logic – except the fundamental point that unless one states otherwise, growth is exponential. Also. Growth may consist of factors which do not increase, for example CO2. But growth must reach limits eventually. It tends to happen sooner than expected, and is by nature rather sudden.

Sandbu’s answer may be that human ingenuity will rescue us. It has done so in the past. For example, oil is actually more plentiful than coal, once hydraulic fracturing made it available (though it does produce CO2).

But I would have been more confident in Martin Sandbu’s opinion if he had shown awareness of this aspect.

Why do I suggest the UBI as a catalyst? Because it makes a philosophical shift possible. I thankfully accept all Martin Sandbu’s answers. But only when this philosophical shift has taken place.

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