From Climate Exhortation to Climate Execution – The New Yorker

by | Dec 27, 2022 | Climate Change

There are about a hundred and forty million homes in the United States. Two-thirds, or about eighty-five million, of them are detached single-family houses; the rest are apartment units or trailer homes. That’s what American prosperity looks like: since the end of the Second World War, our extraordinary wealth has been devoted, above all, to the project of building bigger houses farther apart from one another. The great majority of them are heated with natural gas or oil, and parked in their garages and driveways or on nearby streets are some two hundred and ninety million vehicles, an estimated ninety-nine per cent of which, as of August, run on gasoline. It took centuries to build all those homes from wood and brick and steel and concrete, but, if we’re to seriously address the climate crisis, we have only a few years to remake them.So far, the climate debate has gone on mostly in people’s heads and hearts. It took thirty years to get elected leaders to take it seriously: first, to just get them to say that the planet was warming, and then to allow that humans were causing it. But this year Congress finally passed serious legislation—the Inflation Reduction Act—that allocates hundreds of billions of do …

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