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1. All the "ease" of doing things the way we do them now relies on cheap energy, and peak oil wasn't half the problem that being unwilling to burn fossil fuels (to make things worse) will turn into. Shipping costs will make local production a better idea (a good thing).

You've raised this point a few times, but I don't understand it. It seems to presume that as climate effects become more apparent, we will abruptly stop using fossil fuels, and this will lead to the collapse of civilization. But if the latter is true, the former won't happen. I don't see people voluntarily agreeing (or demanding) that we stop using fossil fuel energy if it would result in the end of human civilization.

2. We've had some experience now with the second largest city in NZ getting whacked. That happened sudden (like about 20 seconds) but it is taking forever to handle the displacement/rebuilding and infrastructure.

I think you "misunderestimate" :-) the total difficulty of this movement of infrastructure of a city. Maybe I am overestimating it, but I do not think so. Build the roads, water supplies, sewage treatment, power generation, mass-transit. I might call it an opportunity, except if the energy to do it is in short supply the problem is much harder.


It's hard to do it quickly. It's easy to do it over the span of decades. You just stop building new and replacement infrastructure in the old place, and build it instead in the new place. We constantly "move" vast numbers of people that way on a regular basis - witness the vast shift of population out of cities like Detroit, Cleveland, and Buffalo - without making much of an effort at all. We just stop building new homes and infrastructure, and stop rebuilding those things, in areas that are at risk, and start taking those resources and investing them in other areas. We just stop moving into those areas. If you've got a few decades and economic incentives are working with you (which they will, as banks and businesses decide not to invest in coastal high-hazard areas) it's pretty simple to "move" large numbers of cities - the same way we "moved" Detroit, Cleveland and Buffalo to Dallas, Oklahoma City, and San Antonio.

Remember - around 40% of the people who would otherwise live in coastal areas of the U.S. in thirty years have not even been born yet. So if that's your time frame, you don't need to move those people - they just don't go into the coastal cities in the first place. As (or if, for those who are skeptical about the degree of impacts) things deteriorate for coastal areas, there will be fewer and fewer opportunities and incentives to move to those areas - and corresponding population loss by people simply choosing to start their adult lives elsewhere.

3. At the same time everyone has to move, everyone also has to find food and water.

Again, not much of a problem over these time frames. Again, if you visualize large groups of itinerant refugees leaving one city to travel to another, you got the wrong image. Instead, just think of large numbers of individual choices about where to live and invest just directing them to go elsewhere than the coastal hazard areas. A young man graduating college chooses to move to Oklahoma City (which is growing rapidly) instead of Baltimore (which is not). A business chooses to start up in Memphis rather than in Philadelphia. That gets repeated over and over again, so you have more grocery stores getting built in OKC and Memphis - and expansion of their water and sewer systems as they grow. No problem - or rather, no greater problem than if all those people had decided to put down roots in Baltimore or Philly.

I am still wondering if you've figured out what the escape clause is. The one technology that would enable us to NOT suffer and probably to escape many of the consequences of burning all the coal. Can't fix the acid ocean, but many of the other problems.

Nope - you've alluded to it a few times, but I don't know what you're referring to.

Albaby
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