EP 60 Special / The Gates Equation

This is a special edition of Climate Files of a highly anticipated talk by Bill Gates, who has come up with an equation you see in this graphic. He presented this at the latest TED conference during a short talk on February 12th. This was followed by a short Q&A at TED and on livestream.com.  Gates says he’s happy to get Twitter questions, so visit his website and fire off some questions to him.

Gates discussed energy, his “equation”, and his goal in life at the TED conference — getting us to zero carbon by 2050.  He feels this is doable in a variety of ways. (These are his ideas and are not necessarily endorsed by myself or by Climate Files, but they are interesting.)  He is getting a large amount of criticism from some environmentalists for saying that we need an “energy miracle” and lots of tech development to solve the climate problem.   As he defines “miracle”, I mostly agree with his ideas on climate change.  (Read an article discussing this here.) He is promoting nuclear power and not just any nuclear power but specifically, a “traveling wave” type of nuclear power, which is being developed by a company called TerraPower.

Is Gates just another T. Boone Pickens trying to cash in?  Nope, Gates actually does understand and believe in the importance of climate change and is really seeking zero carbon solutions, unlike Pickens.

If you are wondering what Gates is up to besides caring what happens to the atmosphere,  you should know that he is personally investing his own money into these ideas. He is spending quite a bit of thought and some of his great wealth on thinking about not just seeds and malaria, but also zero-carbon energy. Check out another article from last Monday for more on what Gates is doing to promote zero carbon energy.  “When we talk about zero climate emissions, we sound crazy. When Bill Gates does it, bankers pick up the phone,” from Alternet.

(This episode of Climate Files is sans commentary from yours truly because I’m on a working break, and the plan is that this podcast will still return to weekly or bi-monthly episodes at some point.)

Download this episode here — it’s a short one — or listen here or subscribe on the right.  For an interesting graphic I found of Bill Gates after he left Microsoft, click on more. I wanted to include it for the cover art for the podcast but it needed the equation on it to make sense!

Here it is!

And that translated to this with my help.

Full disclosure: I am a Mac person and have not been a Bill Gates fan, ever. But, lately he’s getting my attention and some admiration too. He’s actually doing things now to help both people and the planet, so that gets him some high marks.