Greenhouse gas emissions lead to climate change that can have very large negative social and economic consequences. The basis for unsustainable emissions in the long run is that they are free, or even subsidized. The most direct and effective solution to the problem is therefore an international agreement on a minimum price for emissions. With such a price in place, most of the world's vast fossil reserves would not be commercially viable to extract and would therefore remain in the ground.

However, Hassler and Fuglesang believe that a plan B to reduce global warming should also be prepared. A sufficiently broad international climate policy agreement may not be reached. Without an ambitious climate policy in China, India and the African countries, our efforts in Sweden and the EU will not go far. The uncertainty is also very high about how sensitive the climate is to greenhouse gas emissions. Although unlikely, on scientific grounds, it is impossible to exclude rampant climate change if critical threshold effects are exceeded.

From a political point of view, it should not be pointed out exactly which technology should be used for plan B. A broad research that can lead to several plans means less risk taking. However, promising technologies exist. Fuglesang has researched the possibility of halting climate change by reducing the heat input to earth with the help of large umbrellas in space.

To learn more: Sails in space could be a part of a Plan B in combating global warming (In Swedish.)