Terraforming Mars
Aug 19, 2014
Bishop Hill in Climate: WG3

Andrew Lillico has put a rather brilliant blog post up at the Telegraph about terraforming Mars. His case is that the money we intend to spend on mitigating small amounts of climate change are vastly greater than the cost of terraforming Mars and would come to fruition on similar timescales.

There are two standard objections to such terraforming. First, it is said to be too expensive, altogether, to be plausible. Second, it is said to require too long a timescale to be plausible.  Both of these objections appear decisively answered by climate change policies and indeed energy policies in general. Between now and the 2035 alone, global investment in energy and energy efficiency (in many cases with a many-decades payback period) is estimated at about $40 trillion, of which $6 trillion is in renewables and $1 trillion in low-carbon nuclear. We are willing to spend many trillions on projects that could take over a century to come to fruition.

The post has only been up for a few minutes, but the reaction on Twitter has been hilariously splenetic and entirely devoid of any substance. Get yourself some popcorn.

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