Will Technology Save Us?

“We can choose to keep shooting up the curve of exponential growth, bringing us ever closer to irreversible tipping points in ecological collapse, and hope that technology will save us. But if for some reason it doesn’t work, then we’re in trouble.” (Jason Hickel)

This post belongs to a reading series of Less is More by Jason Hickel. For quick access to all chapters, please click here.

Disclaimer: This chapter summary is personal work and an invitation to read the book itself for a detailed view of all the author’s ideas.

Gambling in Paris

“Here’s how the [2015] Paris Agreement works. Each country submits a pledge on how much they will reduce their annual emissions. The pledges – known as Nationally Determined Contributions – are supposed to be set in line with the goal of keeping warming to 1.5°C. But if you add up all the pledges that have been made by signatory nations as of 2020, you’ll notice something rather strange: they don’t come anywhere close to keeping us under 1.5°C. In fact, they don’t even keep us under 2°C. Even if all the countries in the world fulfil their pledges – which are voluntary and non-binding, so there’s certainly no guarantee of this – global emissions will keep rising. We’ll still be hurtling towards 3.3°C of global warming by the end of the century. In other words, even with the Paris Agreement in place, we’re on track for catastrophe.”

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