This gets back to an absolutely fundamental strategic question that everybody who cares about this stuff needs to ask at the beginning, which is: What policies or technologies are going to get the most tons [of carbon reductions] the fastest? That’s the carbon imperative.
If you delay, if you don’t do the really big stuff now, then your future has to be unfathomably heroic. In fact, even if you had free negative emissions that were infinite, you might not solve the problem, because we’re going to spin some natural systems into an unrecoverable runaway. We defrost the tundra and it releases soil carbon and methane. Or the melting lubricates more melting, and so forth.
If you start with this fundamental strategic question — most tons fastest — then you realize that carbon sequestration is perhaps something you should think about [with regard to] path dependency, but as a major focus today, while we’re not rapidly shutting down every coal plant and every natural gas facility, not converting the auto fleet, not launching building codes … it’s crazy.