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1 March 2021
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What you need to know about How To Avoid A Climate Disaster

Every week, Maddyness curates articles from other outlets on a topic that is driving the headlines. This Monday, we look how the ambitious ideas in Bill Gates' new book How To Avoid A Climate Disaster have been received.

My new climate book is finally here

Bill Gates writes – I wrote How to Avoid a Climate Disaster because I think we’re at a crucial moment. I’ve seen exciting progress in the more than 15 years that I’ve been learning about energy and climate change. The cost of renewable energy from the sun and wind has dropped dramatically. There’s more public support for taking big steps to avoid a climate disaster than ever before. And governments and companies around the world are setting ambitious goals for reducing emissions. Read the full article via Gates Notes.

How to Avoid a Climate Disaster by Bill Gates review – why science isn’t enough

How to Avoid a Climate Disaster details the transformation necessary to reverse the effects of decades of catastrophic practices. We need, Gates calculates, to remove 51bn tonnes of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere every year. Failing to do so would cost more than the 1.5 million lives already lost to Covid-19 and could cause, he calculates, five times more deaths than the Spanish flu a century ago. Read the full review by Gordon Brown in The Guardian.

Is Bill Gates’ climate-change book worth reading?

At age 65, Bill Gates continues to walk through life with all of the brashness of an algebra teacher. While his peers among the ultrarich enjoy crocodile breeding, dating pop stars, or traveling by hot-air balloon, the cofounder of Microsoft has devoted his spare time to book collecting and games of bridge. With a soft voice and vigorously boring fashion sense, it’s as if he’s trying to politely underplay his immense success as a businessman or the $36B he and his wife, Melinda, have donated to their influential eponymous foundation, which specialises in public health, education, and poverty reduction.Read the full article via The Outsider

Bill Gates and the greening of capitalism

Gates’ off-script environmentalism, free of ‘de-growth’ rhetoric and anti-capitalist platitudes, is hardly a surprise. As a billionaire entrepreneur, whose wealth was built on software property rights (‘licensing’) as much as computing, he certainly has no problem with capitalism. Or certainly none that, in terms of his projected green transition, a little bit more state intervention, from an eco-regulation there to a carbon tax here, wouldn’t solve. Indeed, climate change is almost a business opportunity for Gates. Read the full article via Spiked.

What is a billionaire’s role in saving the planet?

Does all this money represent pure generosity, or compensation for wrongs done? After all, their companies have contributed a significant chunk of the carbon emissions driving the climate crisis. There are the energy-sucking data centers that made Google founder Sergey Brin and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg so staggeringly wealthy. There’s Apple’s business tactic of planned obsolescence and its requisite cycle of manufacturing and waste. And, of course, there is the consumerist behemoth of Amazon — a kind of combo deal of the above plus objectionable labour practices — which has landed Jeff Bezos at the top of the world’s wealthy list. Read the full article via Grist