In a world of globally-dispersed supply chains, an energy transition in the United States has implications for the extraction, production, and distribution of resources and technology in places well beyond US borders.
The urgency of climate change and the rise of a grassroots legislative political environmental movement in the United States should change the way urban planners think and act on spatial change and social justice.
By innovation policy what we’re really talking about is federal R&D programs. So despite the American economy’s reputation for being this quintessential free market system, much of the innovation and technological development in the American economy can be linked to direct government intervention.
I think that Damian asked me here in large part to talk about this essay from last spring in Places Journal that begins pretty timidly with this line,
I don’t know when the myth of designers as climate saviors began, but I know that it’s time to kill it. Which as you can imagine got me invited to lots of dinner parties at Harvard.
There’s much intellectual, cultural, and creative work to do. But it’s really important as well that we leave room for debate, discussion, productive critique, etc. So this event is not about the final moment. It’s not going to resolve nicely fluid disciplinary discussions. But it is going to be a kind of jamboree of kind of conflicting, interesting, diverse perspectives on post-carbon futures and so on.
For this theoretical physicist here it seemed actually very simple. It’s a conservation law. If you take carbon out of the ground and you put it into the system it will stay there unless you take it back out. From a societal perspective, this is much much more complicated because as we fix it there will be winners and losers.