You know, the struggle with the modern environmental movement is that they identify the correct problem which is finite earth spaceship. Earth is all we got, don’t ruin it.
But they don’t have the solution. So what they say is no growth, no growth, no growth.
The problem is you got 3 billion Indian and Chinese who aren’t going to stay in poverty. They’re gonna roll whether you like it or not. So you can yell at them, you can scream at them, you can yell at us and scream at us, but that’s not gonna happen.
So the only way out, unfortunately is, again, through technology, which is you have to build green technology. And I give Musk a lot of credit, you know, for being one of the few people who’s out there trying to do that.
So you build things that are biodegradable and good for you and healthier. And everybody wants to be healthier; Chinese want to be healthier, Indians want to be healthier.
They want to be cleaner. If you say, “I can clean up your rivers, I can clean up your forests, I can have your children not get sick with cholera and diphtheria and typhoid, I can cure your diseases, I can help make your immune system stronger, I can give you clean drinking water.”
Like, that is what causes people to become environmentalists. Not shouting and screaming at them that they shouldn’t grow and they should stop pumping things into the sky.
You know, they have no concept of that. They’re just trying to get out of poverty. So, I think the modern environmental movement identifies the correct problem, but then doesn’t come up with the right set of solutions that are appealing to people.
People are not going to give up economic growth. They’re gonna have to get rich first.
Joe Rogan : That’s – Yeah, that’s a very good point. But how do do you do both?
NR : You lower the price of clean technologies massively. So you basically make clean technologies cost competitive –
JR: Through subsidy?
NR : Through technologies. Innovation, ideally, you can subsidize in the short to medium term until the innovation curve is crossed. I mean, like, Tesla doesn’t have any patents, right?
NR : Or they freely give away their patents. That’s the example of how you can do it. So, you know, someone – if you wanna get rid of plastics such straws, yeah, you can do it here and there, you can get San Francisco to ban plastic straws.
But China’s not gonna ban plastic straws. Not until you build a paper straw that is, you know, same cost, good durability.
And then you educate the Chinese like, “Hey, this is petroleum. You know this plastic that you’re doing is petroleum. This is bad for you. Here is the chemical composition. Here’s the things that are going into the bloodstream.”
And they want healthy, happy kids also. So they’re gonna have their kids use paper straws. Maybe straws aren’t the best example, but you can – you know, this is true with fossil fuels for example. That’s probably the best one. Or replacing a lot of plastics with glass and paper and so on.