This work offers a summary of the book "EARTH: THE SEQUEL: The Race to Reinvent Energy and Stop Global Warming" by Fred Krupp and Miriam Horn.
Capitalism has been proven time and again to be the most powerful economic force in the world. It's now time to bring this engine of change fully to bear on the most pressing problem facing civilization today - global warming.
The way to do this is simple - by installing a cap-and-trade mechanism which will provide genuine economic incentives for companies to cut their pollution and reduce their global warming emissions.
It could work this way.
The U. S. Congress would first need to set a legally binding and steadily declining limit on the amount of global warming pollution U. S. companies could emit. The emissions allowances could then be divvied up among current emitters or auctioned by the government to raise revenues. Polluters who want to emit more than their fair share would then need to pay more to buy extra credits while those who reduce their emissions can profit by selling their credits in an open market.
By offering genuine financial benefits to those who develop new ways to generate carbon-free energy and to those who develop new technologies to remove carbon emissions from existing industries, a huge amount of ingenuity and innovation would be unleashed.
This has always born fruit in the past and there is no reason to believe the markets cannot be harnessed now to solve the growing global warming problems facing the world today. A cap-and-trade market mechanism of this nature would set off an intensive commercial race to find new and creative ways to reinvent energy and the various ways it gets used. A lot of promising new energy sources are already under development and it's time to let the free markets decide which of these technologies should be scaled up and put into prime time use and which will lack genuine commercial viability.
In short, let the markets decide how energy should be reinvented - not some government bureaucrat or environmental special interest group.