In other words: Can we have Amazon …and the Amazon? What about if the boxes doubled as levies? Pleeaase! I’m Francesca Fiorentini, and in this episode we’re looking at the failures of profit-driven climate change solutions, and why the cooking of our planet is becoming a recipe for socialism. Once again we’ve broken global temperature records with July being the hottest month recorded since the invention of recording temperatures. Which if you’re a right-winger sounds like very biased framing. “The libs never want to talk about the Hadean Age when the earth was molten lava. Typical.” It’s so hot that Greenland is losing ice that wasn’t supposed to melt until 2070, the Arctic is on fire, and I’m pretending I belong at random pool parties. “Oh who my friends with? Oh, Derek. Uh, Michael. Matt. You’re telling me there’s no Matt here?” So now seems like as good a time as… …every other moment prior till now to talk about climate change. The planet has already warmed by one degrees Celsius since the time we started burning all these fossil fuels. And we’re on track to warm by four degrees possibly as soon as 2060. According to the most recent UN study even two degrees of warming would mean millions more refugees, double the loss of food harvests, 10 centimeters of sea level rise and an obliteration of all coral reefs, which means we’ve got 12 years to have a shot at keeping the temperature to a still-bad but manageably terrifying 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming. So yeah, banning plastic straws ain’t gonna cut it. Even though it’s fun to watch so-called liberal paper straws trigger our president into doing this: His campaign started selling Trump-themed plastic straws so you can buy a pack of 10 for $15. $15 for 10 straws? That’s $1.50 per straw. If that’s how much Trump thinks straws cost, how much is his dealer charging him for Adderall? “Yeah, that’ll be uh seven hundred… …thousand… …dollars.” Part of the reason we’re at such a breaking point is thanks to years of shallow solutions— solutions often devised by the same corporate interests that got us into this mess in the first place. One of those solutions is carbon cap and trade, which tries to get polluters to pollute less by limiting the amount of carbon any corporation can emit, but also by allowing them to purchase carbon limits from other companies who haven’t used theirs up. Cap and trade has already been implemented in countries around the world and in a number of US states, but many say that it doesn’t actually stop the emissions; It just spreads them around and creates a speculative market for carbon. Like, imagine if you could buy and sell Weight Watchers points to keep eating pizza. Someone would be making money, but no one’s losing weight. Plus we’d see the rise of a frightening thin-people mafia who control the whole racket. Just listen to one researcher who says cap and trade pushes us in the opposite direction of where we need to be going: We need to overcome our addiction to fossil fuels, and the problem with cap-and-trade is that it stands in the way of doing that. And in many ways, it’s it’s it’s a way of providing pollution rights to some of the worst polluters so that they can delay the kind of structural change that’s necessary. He’s right. That’s not how you fight an addiction. If you want to get your brother off heroin, you don’t split up his stash between your mom and dad like, “Let’s all just do a little bit of heroin to keep Brad from doing a lot a bit of heroin.” At this point cap and trade isn’t even a relevant solution anymore because it’s too slow to be viable. California—the second largest carbon polluter in the nation, but first in my heart— reduced its emissions by almost 9% in three years, which is not bad, but do the math: It’s not nearly enough if we’ve got only 12 years to get to zero. Silicon Valley is still going to be underwater, and then we’ll have to deal with a whole bunch of Flotation device startups and that just seems exhausting. So cap and trade won’t get us there. What about innovation? We’ll just ask the science nerds to come up with something. I mean, other than the ones telling us to stop burning fossil fuels. Innovation has been the aim of private companies also looking to get rich off the climate crisis, floating ideas like geoengineering, which includes one plan to spray reflective aerosols into the stratosphere to block the Sun. Yeah. Aerosol. If only our climate change denying president knew that this whole time the answer has been hairspray. Turns out though that that scheme, like many others, has too many unforeseen side effects to be feasible— Things like stopping rain and totally vindicating chemtrail conspiracists. Even if wacky inventions or cap and trade worked, they’re still too slow. Meanwhile, the U.S. continues to subsidize the fossil fuel industry to the tune of $649 billion a year. So not only are they making the planet uninhabitable, they’re getting a goddamn discount. These faux solutions have come and gone all while climate change has been getting worse, which means now we need to do far more in way less time. The longer we wait, the more that the response challenges our economic system because we need to cut so much and so deeply. What does she mean that the response will challenge our economic system? Well, that’s because our economic system is currently based on using up all of Earth’s natural resources with no regard for the actual earth. All to turn a profit and create economic growth, or GDP. You remember GDP from our video on the economy, which you should totally watch. And while you’re at it, subscribe. GDP is that phantom number that many agree is useless but is actually incredibly harmful when it comes to climate change. Since when was GDP a sensible measure of human welfare? And yet everything that governments want to do is to try to boost GDP. Now, people at the OECD or the World Bank, they say “Oh, we’re not asking for a lot of growth— Just three percent a year.” That means doubling in twenty four years. Yeah, we’re bursting through all the environmental boundaries and screwing the planet already— You want to double it? We have to overthrow this system, which is eating the planet with perpetual growth. I love how blown this host’s mind is. Rarely do you see the precise moment that someone gets woke. “You it’s not about plastic straws?” Slowing down economic growth has actually been the only thing that has drastically stopped greenhouse gas emissions. The only thing in the last 40 years that has measurably reduced global greenhouse gas emissions is reductions in economic growth. When the Eastern Bloc collapsed in the early 90s that led to global emissions reductions. He’s right. After the collapse of the Soviet Union greenhouse gas emissions dropped by about 40 percent. Apparently people not eating meat because of the high prices had a lot to do with it. It was nothing but veggie borscht for them. And to think, now it’s way less painful to avoid eating meat with things like the Impossible Whopper, which I will try as soon as I stop being afraid of it. How does it bleed? The evidence is there that unless we’re willing to rethink capitalism we might have to rethink life itself because we can’t have infinite growth on a finite planet. We’ve been obsessed with doing more to stop climate change making even more money when the answer is actually keeping fossil fuels in the ground. Doing less. like Disney live-action reboots: Do less. Less extraction of oil, less production, fewer-or-no yachts for the DeVos family. Renewable energy, solar and wind, can replace coal, gas and oil, but we still can’t keep endlessly producing and consuming. Even a UN official back in 2015 said as much, and that got the attention of Fox News’s Greg Gutfeld who quoted her on his show: This is probably the most difficult task to intentionally transform the economic development model for the first time in human history. And predictably that was met with red-baiting: Well, she’s wrong. See Mao and the 50 million dead or Stalin—hell, look at Venezuela right now— It’s a crap show without toilet paper. Seriously, they don’t have toilet paper in Venezuela. Oh, where we’re going, Greg, you won’t need toilet paper because the whole world will be one giant bidet. You can wash your face-ass wherever you want. Beyond the red-baiting, there’s an honest question: If we slow down production, will there be jobs? Enter the Green New Deal, a plan introduced by representative Alexandria Ocasio Cortez and that other guy. The Green New Deal is a blueprint for a ten-year mobilization to get to net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by taking major steps like moving to renewable energy and building public transportation, all with the labor of millions of newly created jobs. This is a call to reorganize and to make sure that we are fighting for a just economy, for a just society, a just environment and a just future for the United States of America and the world. Mmm! Sorry. Having an ASMR moment. And whenever there’s a plan for massive public investment and putting people over profit, it scares the 1 percent—and their mouthpieces—a whole lot: They went looking for an issue that would justify a hostile takeover of the economy. Climate change seems scary so they went with that. Oh my god. Tucker Carlson would rather human civilization die than live in a more equal country. Also, note what’s going on just to his right. Yeah, those are updates on an abnormally large hurricane off the Gulf Coast. I love how there’s an infiltrator at Fox fighting the machine from the inside, and it’s the weather. It will be hard to rein in emissions and capitalism for that matter, but it is possible. We must try. With your help, with your insistence, with your organizing, with your demands, with your voting, with your mobilizing a broader electorate than we have ever seen before in American history, we do not have to go down that path. It’s too late to stop some climate chaos: We’re living it, but are we going to die from the things we love no matter how humiliating? Will we be the David Carradine of civilizations? Or are we going to get real about real solutions? There’s time, but we can’t do it by just pissing around at the margins of the problem. We’ve got to go straight to the heart of capitalism and overthrow it. In other words: Wouldn’t we rather be red than dead? Thanks so much for watching Newsbroke. Follow me @Franifio, and follow AJ+ and Newsbroke on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, all the things. Do you guys think that the U.S. has what it takes to transform to a new economic model? Could we—could we do it? Let me know in the comments below, and we will see you next week.