jzhao.xyz

Search IconIcon to open search

 .
  \_.
  /

Climate Tech

Last updated February 15, 2022

Not just about investing in carbon removal or carbon offsets also about investing in the infrastructure to make it possible.

The Land Ethic simply enlarges the boundaries of the community to include soils, waters, plants, and animals, or collectively: the land. It changes the role of Homo sapiens from conqueror of the land community to plain member and citizen of it.

Related: degrowth

# Measuring Offsets

You can not mitigate what you can not measure.

The Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol consists of “Scopes”, each of which has multiple sub categories. In order to calculate our current carbon footprint, we looked into the emission categories within Scope 1, Scope 2, and Scope 3.

Attempting to pay people to offset carbon through carbon credits

# Investment Facts!

Source: Climate tech $16b mid-year investment action report

Investment Diversity across sectorsInvestment Diversity across sectors

# Neutral Infrastructure

Source: Microsoft Finds Underwater Data Centers Practical and Power, Pollution and the Internet, NYT.

Might be software infrastructure but it has lots of political implications (e.g. climate impact, territory disputes, etc.). It’s ‘reduced cost’ does not factor in long-term negative externalities like warming the ocean. (also: software and politics)

“Many of these solutions are readily available, but in a risk-averse industry, most companies have been reluctant to make wholesale change.” This is largely due to the anonymity involved in the industry where even the federal government was unable to determine how much energy its own data centres consume.

“They don’t get a bonus for saving on the electric bill. They get a bonus for having the data centre available 99.999 percent of the time.”

Low utilization can mean that the energy wasted is as much as 30x the amount of electricity used if it was at 100% utilization.

# Company Initiatives

# Stripe

https://stripe.com/climate

tldr; we need to develop new carbon removal tech, the ones we have right now are unlikely to scale to well enough to tackle the problem as it stands right now

“Today, carbon removal solutions face a chicken-and-egg problem. As early technologies, they’re more expensive, so don’t attract a critical mass of customers. But without wider adoption, they can’t scale production to become cheaper.”

“Early purchasers can help new carbon removal technologies get down the cost curve and up the volume curve. Experience with manufacturing learning and experience curves has shown repeatedly that deployment and scale beget improvement, a phenomenon seen across DNA sequencing, hard drive capacity, and solar panels.”

# Shopify

General ethos: we don’t know what works so let’s invest in a little bit of everything

There’s no easy fix for climate change, and no solution that will singlehandedly solve the problem. We have to try every possible nature-based and engineered option.

Mix of solutions that make a difference now (evergreen tech: 24%) but also emerging tech with big impact down the line (frontier portfolio: 76%) Rationale

Frontier

  1. Direct Air Capture -> directly pulling carbon out of the air and storying it permanently
  2. Product -> storing carbon into usable products (e.g. concrete)
  3. Ocean -> large bodies of water as carbon sinks while also reducing ocean acidification
  4. Biomass -> sequester carbon in organic material, using organic material for energy
  5. Mineralization -> turning carbon into a mineral to store

Evergreen (creating a buffer against climate change until we figure out how to unscrew ourselves)

  1. Forest -> planting, restoring, and protecting forests
  2. Soil -> farming techniques that improve soil health and carbon storage
  3. Renewable Energy -> investing in fossil fuel alternatives
  4. Transportation -> reducing emissions from transportation

Interactive Graph