惟愿人们在读完我的新书后能记住这一件事 | 盖茨笔记

来源:政闻天下


My new climate book is out this week. I hope that it gives everyone who reads it a better understanding of what we need to do to avoid a climate disaster. But if there is only one idea I want people to take away from the book, it’s this: We need to lower the Green Premiums.


我关于气候的新书在本周发售。我希望它能让所有读者更好地理解我们需要做什么才能避免一场气候灾难。但如果我只能挑书里的一件事让人们记住,那就是:我们需要降低“绿色溢价”。


I’ve written about the Green Premiums on this blog before. The term refers to the difference in cost between a product that involves emitting carbon and an alternative that doesn’t. For example, the current average price of jet fuel is $2.22 per gallon. If an airline wanted to swap that out for a zero-carbon advanced biofuel alternative, you’d have to pay $5.35 per gallon—a whopping 140 percent increase. That difference is the Green Premium for gasoline.


我以前在公众号写过关于“绿色溢价”的文章。该术语指的是产生碳排放的产品与不产生碳排放的替代品之间的成本差异。例如,目前航空燃料的平均价格为2.22美元/加仑(约4元人民币/升,译注)。如果一家航空公司想将其替换为零碳的高级生物燃料替代品,那么你需要支付的价格是5.35美元/加仑(约9.6元人民币/升,译注),涨幅高达140%。这个价格差别就是汽油的“绿色溢价”。


Green Premiums let us see which zero-carbon solutions we should deploy now—like solar power, which has a low premium in some places—and where we should pursue breakthroughs because the clean alternatives aren’t cheap enough. The bigger the Green Premium is for a particular product, the more expensive it will be to eliminate that product’s emissions—and the harder it will be to accomplish. Lowering these premiums is the only way to zero out emissions without making things significantly more expensive.


“绿色溢价”告诉我们现在应该部署哪种零碳解决方案(例如太阳能,它在一些地方具有较低溢价),以及我们应该在哪些方面寻求突破,因为清洁替代品的价格还不够便宜。一件产品的“绿色溢价”越高,消除该产品碳排放的成本就越高,实现起来就越困难。要想将排放清零,并且不会造成物价飞涨,降低这些溢价是唯一的出路。


When I talk to presidents and prime ministers about their countries’ plans to fight climate change, I always urge them to focus their innovation efforts on the biggest Green Premiums. Lowering those premiums is going to take time, so we need to accelerate work on them right away. It’s tempting to focus on low-hanging fruit—like switching to electric vehicles—and we should. But easy wins aren’t enough if we’re going to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. We need to work on the hard parts too, like cement and steel.


当我与各国总统和总理们谈论他们国家应对气候变化的计划时,我总是敦促他们将创新努力聚焦于“绿色溢价”最高的领域。降低这些溢价需要时间,因此我们需要立即加速这方面的工作。将注意力集中在唾手可得的果实确实诱人(例如改用电动汽车),并且我们应该这样做。但如果我们要在2050年之前消除温室气体排放,仅仅取得这些容易的胜利还远远不够。我们还需要挑战更困难的部分,比如水泥和钢铁


So, how exactly do we lower the Green Premiums? There are two levers that governments can pull: reduce the cost of zero-carbon alternatives or charge for the hidden costs of pollution. Ideally, any plan to address climate change does both.


那么,我们具体该如何降低“绿色溢价”呢?政府可以采取两个手段:降低零碳替代品的成本或对污染的隐性成本收费。理想情况下,任何致力于应对气候变化的计划都会做到这两点。


Reduce the cost of zero-carbon alternatives

降低零碳替代品的成本

The world needs to get to zero emissions by 2050 if we’re going to avoid a climate disaster. To do that, we need to find ways to generate and store clean electricity, grow food, make things, move around, and heat and cool our buildings without releasing greenhouse gases. Some of these clean alternatives are already out there, but we need breakthroughs to lower their Green Premiums. Others don’t exist at all, let alone at a low enough cost for middle-income countries to afford.


如果想要避免一场气候灾难,世界需要在2050年之前实现零排放。为此,我们需要找到各种方式来产生和储存清洁电力种植食物制造出行及为建筑采暖和制冷,同时不释放温室气体。其中一些清洁替代品已经存在,但我们需要革命性的突破,从而降低它们的“绿色溢价”。其他的替代品则根本不存在,更不用说将成本降到足够低,使得中等收入国家也能负担得起。


If we’re going to reduce the cost of zero-carbon alternatives, we need a ton of innovation. Governments need to lead the way on a lot of this innovation, because they can invest in new ideas that might be too risky to be funded by the private sector. That’s why, in my book, I call on governments to quintuple clean energy and climate-related R&D over the next decade. The discoveries that come out of that R&D will feed innovative work in private companies around the world. Philanthropic funding can help, too, by supporting early-stage innovators who could take great ideas from the lab and turn them into new products and services.


如果我们要降低零碳替代品的成本,我们需要大量的创新。政府需要在许多创新中起带头作用,因为它们可以投资那些对于私人部门来说太过冒险的新想法。因此,在我的书里,我呼吁各国政府在未来十年内,将与清洁能源和气候相关的研发投入提高五倍。从这些研发工作得到的发现,将为世界各地私营企业的创新工作提供养料。慈善资金也可以通过支持早期创新者来提供帮助,这些创新者可以从实验室中得到灵感,并将其转化为新产品和新服务。


It won’t be enough to just supply more innovation, though—we also need to create demand so these new products and services can get a foothold in the competitive marketplace. Companies can work with governments to fund the first few projects demonstrating a new technology or system works safely, which can prove to investors that the next projects are ready for them to fund.


但是,仅仅提供更多的创新还远远不够。我们还需要创造需求,以使这些新产品和新服务可以在竞争激烈的市场中有立足之地。公司可以与政府合作,为最初的几个项目提供资金,证明新技术或系统可以安全地运行,这就可以向投资者证明接下来的项目已经准备好接受他们的投资了。


Once a product is ready to buy, companies can then use their own buying power to increase the clean products they consume in their supply chains. Federal and state governments have this same power, too—they can do things like require the use of clean steel and cement in the infrastructure projects they fund.


一旦某产品已经做好上市准备,公司便可以利用自己的购买力来增加其供应链中的清洁产品。联邦政府和州政府也具有同样的能力,例如它们可以要求由其资助的基础设施项目使用清洁钢铁和水泥。


The real value of government leadership in this space is that it can take chances on bold ideas that might fail or might not pay off right away. When an idea is in its earliest stages, the right policies and financing can make sure it gets fully explored. That’s especially important for zero-carbon alternatives that don’t exist yet. We need to try out lots of different ideas to find the ones that work.


政府领导力在此领域的真正价值在于,它可以押注可能失败或无法立即产生收益的大胆想法。当一个想法处于早期阶段时,正确的政策和融资可以确保它得到充分的探索。这对于尚不存在的零碳替代品尤其重要。我们需要尝试许多不同的想法,从而把可行的找出来。


Charge for the hidden costs of pollution

对污染的隐性成本收费


Today, when businesses make products or consumers buy things, they don’t bear any extra cost for the carbon involved. That carbon imposes a very real cost on society, though. Just think about all the money cities and towns are spending—and will spend in the future—to adapt to the effects of climate change.


如今,当企业生产产品或消费者购买产品时,他们无需为产品涉及的碳排放承担任何额外费用。但是,碳排放给社会造成了非常明显的成本,想想城镇现在和将来为适应气候变化的影响所要付出的所有花费。


Governments have the power to ensure that at least some of these external costs are paid by whoever is responsible for them. This would, in turn, create an incentive for companies to come up with carbon-free alternatives. By addressing the hidden costs of fossil fuels, it tells the market that there will be extra costs associated with products that emit greenhouse gas. And by slowly increasing the price of carbon to reflect its true cost, we can nudge producers and consumers toward more efficient decisions and encourage innovation that reduces Green Premiums. You’re more likely to try to invent a new type of clean fuel if you’re confident you won’t be undercut by cheap gasoline.


政府有权确保,至少这些外部成本中的一些由应对此负责的人支付。反过来,这将激励企业提出零碳替代方案。通过处理化石燃料的隐性成本,这个行动告诉市场,排放温室气体的产品将产生额外的成本。通过缓慢提高碳排价格从而反映其真实成本,我们可以将生产商和消费者推向更有效的决策方向,并能鼓励降低“绿色溢价”的创新。在确信自己的创新努力不会被廉价汽油削弱时,你将更可能尝试发明一种新型清洁燃料。


We could make pollution more expensive through either a carbon tax or a cap-and-trade system, where companies can buy and sell the right to emit carbon. Where the revenue generated by these programs goes is not as important as the market signal sent by the price itself. Many economists argue that the money should be returned to consumers or businesses to cover the resulting increase in prices, although others believe it should be reinvested in R&D and other incentives to help solve climate change.


我们可以使污染变得更加昂贵,除了通过征收碳税之外,还能通过一种碳排放交易系统,公司可以在其上对碳排放权进行交易。这些项目产生收入的去向,不如价格本身发出的市场信号重要。许多经济学家认为,这笔钱应该退还给消费者或企业,以弥补由此引起的价格上涨,尽管其他人认为,这笔钱应该被再投资于研发和其他激励措施,以帮助解决气候变化。


The biggest impact will come from putting a price on carbon on the national level, although state and local governments can play a big role too. States can test policies like carbon pricing before we implement them across the country. And they can join together in regional alliances, the way some states in the northeastern U.S. have done with a cap-and-trade program to lower emissions.


最大的影响将来自在国家层面上对碳排放的定价,尽管州和地方政府也可以发挥重要作用。在我们在全国范围内实施这些措施之前,地方政府可以测试碳定价等政策。它们可以加入区域联盟,就像美国东北部的一些州通过碳排放交易系统来减少碳排放一样。


Governments must take the lead if we’re going to lower the Green Premiums, but there are things you can do as an individual to help too. You can use your purchasing power as a consumer to buy green alternatives, which sends a signal to companies that there is a market for these products. You can also use your voice as a citizen to urge your elected officials to take the steps I outlined above. (You can read more about what you can do to fight climate change here.)


如果我们要降低“绿色溢价”,政府必须带头,但也有一些事是你作为个体也能帮到的。你可以使用自己作为消费者的购买力来购买绿色替代品,这向生产企业发出信号,表明这些产品是有市场的。你也可以利用自己作为公民的声音,敦促官员采取我上面列出的措施。(你可以在这篇文章里更多了解你可以做什么来抗击气候变化。)


You’re going to hear me talk about Green Premiums a lot in the months and years to come, because addressing them is the single most important thing we can do to avoid a climate disaster. And I’ll be doing more than talking: this will be a central part of the work we do at Breakthrough Energy, my organization dedicated to accelerating the clean energy transition. So, the next time someone asks you what they can do to fight climate change, I hope you tell them: Do whatever you can to lower the Green Premiums.


你将在未来几个月、几年里听到我多次谈到“绿色溢价”,因为降低这些溢价是我们可以为避免一场气候灾难所做的最重要的事。并且我将行胜于言:这将成为我们在突破能源的核心工作——这个由我成立的组织致力于加快向清洁能源的转型速度。因此,如果下次有人问你他们可以做什么来抗击气候变化,我希望你告诉他们:尽你所能来降低“绿色溢价”。



49 次瀏覽0 則留言

778-707-5568

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Twitter
  • YouTube

訂閱表單