Giving Compass’ Take:
· Global Possibilities takes a look at a group called Let’s Fund that is using effective altruism principles to guide donations towards innovation in the fight against climate change. Funding innovation in clean energy technology is not only a way to help reduce emissions, but it also allows for new job opportunities.
· What is Let’s Fund and how are they supporting innovation in clean energy technology? How can donors support innovation in this area?
According to the climate scientists at the IPCC, the world needs to transition entirely to clean energy by midcentury.
The transition is underway — but getting all the way there is a daunting goal that will require researching and developing new products and services, especially in fossil fuel-intensive industries like concrete- and steel-making that have largely been neglected.
For years, in climate circles, those calling for more R&D were pitted in an utterly unconstructive battle against those calling for more deployment of existing clean energy technologies. The “deployment crowd” accused the “innovation crowd” of fostering delay by casting unconstructive doubt on current technologies and policies.
I believe, or at least hope, that this absurd fight is behind us. The dire urgency of the climate crisis and the scale of the task ahead lay bare the obvious answer: We need both deployment and innovation. Lots more of both. We are doing nowhere near as much as we should of either one.
Having reached that rapprochement, I think it’s time for fans of deployment — a class in which I include myself — to take a fresh, non-defensive look at the argument for innovation. It really is important!
This is on my mind because of a new report issued by a group called Let’s Fund, which applies the principles of “effective altruism” in guiding donor money to good causes. The group took a close look at climate change and came to a fairly stark conclusion: The best place to put donor money is in innovation. Specifically, the group is recommending that donors support the Clean Energy Innovation program at the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation(ITIF), a US think tank.
Read the full article about tackling climate change by David Roberts at Global Possibilities.
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