Profile picture
Blair King @BlairKing_ca
, 22 tweets, 18 min read Read on Twitter
Amused last night to be informed that:

"I just think you suffer from reductionist thinking"

As a practitioner in the natural sciences that is like being told you "suffer from being too attractive and too popular". As insults go it is one I can wear #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 1/
In the field of energy and pipelines thinking in a reductionist style means recognizing that we will still need ambulances and firetrucks in any energy future so any solution I come up with needs to include those types of services #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 2/
Being a reductionist (and a pragmatist) means acknowledging that sometimes you have to make the best of a number of imperfect choices because choosing not to make a choice is actually a choice, a choice to do nothing #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 3/
When I ask the activist whether they prefer tankers or oil-by-rail and their response is: neither. I go back to the ambulance and the reductionist in me asks: what will you use to power the ambulances we have on the street now? #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 4/
Invariably the activist retorts with: "well we should only use electric ambulances". This non-answer ignores the fact that we still don't have an electric ambulance fleet and will not have one for decades. That is reductionist thinking #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 5/
The reductionist (or pragmatic) environmentalist looks at the state of our society now, the rate of transition, and the maximum possible rate of transition and acknowledges that we will need liquid fossil fuels for the foreseeable future #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 6/
The activists counter with: "but we are ruining our planet we have to stop using fossil fuels yesterday" and my response once again is a reductionist and pragmatic one: so who are you willing to sacrifice? #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 7/
We live in a global community with huge challenges and climate change is only one of those challenges. It is an important one but it is not the only one. In many developing nations climate change isn't even on the radar #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 8/
If your family is struggling to find food to eat today and tomorrow the challenges of climate change in a decade seems a pretty inconsequential concern. 1.2 billion humans live in energy poverty… #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 9/
each year 4.3 million people die from preventable indoor air pollution directly resulting from that energy poverty.… These people don't care about climate change and we have to address their misery as well #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 10/
We also have to recognize that the nations whose citizens are suffering under that poverty are going to demand the right to get their citizens out of energy poverty even if it risks increasing the likelihood of climate change #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 11/
As a reductionist and pragmatic environmentalist that is what fees my holistic world-view a recognition that we have to make changes but need to situate those changes in a world where every decision has possible negative consequences #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 12/
This is why I support our domestic #LNG industry because while it may potentially cause BC to miss our Paris Agreement commitments it will help to reduce global carbon emissions and it is the global numbers that matter to a reductionist #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 13/
Going back to the beginning reductionist/pragmatic approaches represent how we will actually achieve our environmental goals because in the real world not making a decision means making a decision for the status quo and the status quo isn't working #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 14/
It means accepting @TransMtn as the safest way to move the fossil fuels we need and which then allows the Alberta gov't to sell their Climate Leadership Plan which involves massive investment to reduce their dependence on coal for energy #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 15/
It means Alberta investing to make their bitumen the low-carbon possible. They have already made huge strides and with solvent-aided SAGD they may make it some of the lowest-carbon heavy oils out there #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 16/
But mostly it means looking at each decision and establishing if it is moving us in the right direction. Not the perfect direction but the right direction because we live in the real world and if we wait for perfect we will get nothing #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 17/
To conclude I will return to the activists who say that I am just accepting that climate change will ruin the world, I ask: what is your actual plan? How will you keep hospitals running while we transition off fossil fuels #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 18/
What will you as activists do to ensure that those 1.2 billion people in energy poverty don't die in misery? Perhaps it means Greenpeace not fighting every nuclear plant on the planet #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 19/
Maybe it means activists not fighting Golden Rice with its ability to reduce the misery and blindness for millions in the developing world. The world needs more environmentalists who look at the world with a reductionist's eye view #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 20/
Pragmatic environmentalists who acknowledge that perfection is not possible and so choose the least damaging of the various options on the table because doing so will save the most lives and protect the most habitat #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 21/
Because one thing we all seem to forget is that we share this planet with trillions of non-humans and they need their space to live, thrive and survive as well and we know that human poverty is incredibly hard on the non-humans on this planet #bcpoli #abpoli #cdnpoli 22/
Missing some Tweet in this thread?
You can try to force a refresh.

Like this thread? Get email updates or save it to PDF!

Subscribe to Blair King
Profile picture

Get real-time email alerts when new unrolls are available from this author!

This content may be removed anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just three indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member and get exclusive features!

Premium member ($3.00/month or $30.00/year)

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!