Friday, July 25, 2014

Survey:  Climate Experts Favor Retiring Coal, Keeping Nuclear

No coal image (Credit: iStock) Click to enlarge.
If you were the scientific advisor to a $200-billion venture capital fund that aims to limit global warming over the next 20 years, what investment would you recommend as having the single biggest impact?  A survey of climate experts found that a majority listed the retirement of coal power—or the sequestering of their emissions—as the top priority for investment.

The retiring of coal-fired plants was picked as the number one choice among an array of other investment options such as rainforest preservation, changing the human diet to less meat (or perhaps encouraging consumption of insects), and building low-emission products.  Such findings come from the Vision Prize, a nonpartisan research platform that uses charity prize incentives to carry out online surveys of climate experts.

This latest Vision Prize survey also asked the opinion of experts regarding an open letter on nuclear power by Ken Caldeira, Kerry Emanuel, James Hansen, and Tom Wigley that was published on 3 November 2013.  About 71 percent of experts surveyed agreed with the letter's opinion that nuclear power will play a crucial role in any plan to stabilize the effects of climate change.

At the same time, 67 percent agreed with the letter's opinion that renewable energy sources such as wind, solar and biomass would not scale up fast enough to meet the world's expected power requirements.

Survey:  Climate Experts Favor Retiring Coal, Keeping Nuclear

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