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Peter Getty is a philanthropist and contributing blogger for the Huffington Post. His work and writings revolve around environmental issues. Getty's philanthropic initiatives, as well as the organizations he supports, are committed to protecting the environment and spreading environmental awareness.

Affordable Planet Saving

peter getty climateA central argument against moving to renewable energy sources, or even combating climate change in general, is that it would be too costly. According to a recent report by the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate, the costs aren’t as high as most people would imagine. Hopefully this will help shift some worldviews of those who are inexplicably still believe that the economy couldn’t handle a shift in the energy sector.

The report looked at the generally accepted estimation that there will be about ninety trillion dollars invested in infrastructure around the world. To implement a complete transition to renewable energy sources over those same years, the cost would be four trillion dollars. That’s not much of an increase at all. One of the reasons the costs are so low is because of the dropping costs of renewable energy, which I’ve reported on here before.

Of course, there are many benefits to spending this extra capital than just saving the planet. It also means that the rapid rate of deforestation wouldn’t be a part of our energy system anymore. And the potential for job creation, innovation, and economic growth are really endless.

Is it possible, though? Getting countries on board with the plan, including our own, will be a political minefield. And a 15-year plan might be affordable, but it would still be hard work and require a number of agencies and private companies working very efficiently to pull it off. There’s a reason to be hopeful, particularly as we hear more and more about realistic solutions that can help change the tide of public opinion.