Shripal, your observation that business considerations tend to delay the implementation of carbon sequestering is acute. The ecological value of an implementation now is indeed much greater than in the future, but yet the carbon pricing trend would indicate the reverse. I think this is the classical “Don’t miss it till it’s gone” syndrome.
I doubt we’ll change human nature anytime soon, but I do question the suitability of exchanging “Carbon”. And I do think that if we find the right medium for exchange that the problem you illustrated will solve itself. It seems we are falling into the pit of measuring what’s easy instead of what’s important. Measuring carbon is important from a scientific point of view, but not from a business point of view because it’s not marketable.
As a consumer, I don’t want to buy the reduction of carbon, I want to buy insurance against my beachside villa being 5 feet under water. As a company, I also don’t want to buy carbon reduction, I want to buy company image, long term stability etc. So what’ exactly is the right thing to sell and exchange?
The challenge then is settling on a trade-able medium. It can’t be on carbon directly because lower carbon doesn’t translate to anything tangible for laymen. Maybe it’s well being, peace, prosperity. Can we sell those things? I’ve seen it sold at temples. Little good luck charms blessed by the monks can go for $2-$10. Small statues in images and symbols can sell for more. I’m not necessarily proposing going into the religion business, but perhaps an unusual medium for exchange is necessary in lieu of carbon.
Connie Kwan is a Green Energy Consultant based in Santa Clara who helps businesses save money by introducing energy-use efficiencies