Climate Change as Investment Opportunity

As I look at weather predictions, I’m obviously concerned about climate change. I have a bugout plan if it’s necessary to move to avoid severe climate issues. I work in an area (medicine) where climate change affects everything from what patients you see to worries about new diseases to supply change disruptions. Also I’m pretty damn upset with people dying because we were greedy and stupid.

But one thing I think we should be ready for is that people are going to see Fighting Climate Change as an investment opportunity.

Just look at the way money got poured into AI/LLMs in 2023-2024 (when this was written). Take a look at investment fads as people seek the latest thing (and a quick payout). I’ve sometimes wondered when we see the next big economic bubble pop, and other times I wonder if we’ve got so many bubbles popping all the time but don’t notice as the money is already moving on.

That leads me to climate change. Because that’s not just a crisis, but also solving the crisis is going to be seen by some as an opportunity. If you can help people navigate climate change, then someone is probably going to desperately hand you cash – probably a government or ten.

But there’s more! People will want a fast solution to climate change, or at least something that gets them re-elected or brings in cash. That means people will propose fast solutions to climate change problems, and many of those sound high-tech and cool, and that will have many people interested.

Geohacking is going to definitely get attention. Carbon fixation and atmospheric scrubbing is going to get a look. There will also probably be assorted insane plots and suggestions. At least one moron will try to find a way to move entire cities underground or something.

All of these are cool and promise fast (well on some scales) solutions. People love that.

Do I expect this to help climate change? On the whole, no. It’ll just be another investment opportunity, a chance for scammers, and a hope for an easy solution. Climate change is a larger systemic issue and it won’t be solved easily, even if you can safely hack the atmosphere.

Instead I expect it to create scams, mistakes, errors, possibly even disasters. People will smell money, people will see potential stock increases, and that will bring in money and people who want a profit. It will also result in eventual collapse and people moving on to other markets.

It’s my hope that this inevitable scammy, inflate-the-stock type crap is limited and controlled. It might even let us drive real solutions. But there’s going to be all sorts of opportunism in fighting climate change, and we have to be ready for it.

. . . and that is a depressing set of words to write.

Steven Savage

Career Advice: Your Climate Plan

(This column is posted at and Steve’s Tumblr.  Find out more at my newsletter.)

As I’ve noted before, I kind of give less career advice lately. Some of it is that my advice has changed, some of it is that I am evaluating what I can share as a more senior professional, and most of it is the world has changed. However, I can provide some useful insights, repeating and expanding on what I’ve said before.

Work climate change into your career.

Sure I’ve said it before, but I should note that as of this writing in 202 I live in California, which got hot then caught on fire. Then everything caught on fire, and a bunch of states near us had it even worse. The term “climate refugee” got used in the present tense in the news, so I got thoughtful.

Oh and there’s a damn pandemic.

So here’s a few insights I’ve had from being in the middle of this.

Accept this is the reality. Climate change is real. It will probably affect your life and your job. That’s the way it is.

Evaluate possible climate impacts on where you live – and may live. This may not be as clear as it seems, so do your research. For instance there’s several possible scenarios of where I live, meaning I get to contemplate heat, fires, torrential rains, and mudslides (probably not at once). Also keep in mind these are impacts – don’t think in good or bad, because that increased heat to you may mean others wish to move to your area.

Listen to others. Share ideas with friends, follow the news, join a transition community. Connect with others to understand what’s going on – and what may go on. I’ve had more than enough cases of “oh, I didn’t know that” in just the few years to remind me of this.

Have a climate change plan. Evaluate what happens if you have to move due to climate change. Do not assume you won’t – instead evaluate how you might be impacted. Remember impacts could even be “my area is really climate safe and people may want to move here.”

Have a climate change career plan. You’re going to need to ask what you’ll do for a living. Do you have portable skills? Can you work from home and remotely? Where can you move and do what you do?

If you move, remember others my do it as well. If ten years from now you’re leaving a unlivable area, you won’t be alone. Keep track of what happens in your “relocation targets.” Also remember if you arrive late if there’s a rush, there may be challenges.

Team up. Don’t do this planning alone. Even if you’re alone now, when you move you may have a roommate, or an SO, etc.

Those are my thoughts, and I hope they help. Let me know your climate change plans and thoughts.

As for mine? My area has problems, but they’re straightforward, so I have some identified “bug out” areas and a job that can be done remotely. I’ve got it easier compared to some.

But I’m also older. I won’t be around as long as some of you. I hope my advice helps, and that maybe it does some small part to help you adapt to climate change. And perhaps we can work on mitigating it.

Steven Savage

Link Roundup 10/9/2013

  • Victory for Science – LA Times won’t be publishing letters of climate-change denials.  I find this interesting in light of Popular Science’s decisions.  Controversy aside, it’s a vote for responsibility over random yelling by people and acting like “all sides are equal.”  Wether this takes off is something to watch.
  • On the subject of calling out stupidity, and the possibility of economic meltdown, here’s six CEO’s who think Washington is stupid and are willing to say it.  Hopefully there’s enough pressure here.
  • Washington may be incompetent, but the publishing industry is actually . . . doing better than you may think.  Here’s a fascinating deconstruction you’ll want to read.
  • Also ever liked Asmov’s ‘Foundation’ but wished it was a manga?  Well now it’s going to be a manga.  I didn’t see that coming – and kind of wonder if that could lead to anime or movie adaptions.  It’s often been talked about but never done  . . . but this may be a gateway.
  • Get your hand on 1,661 pulp novels as free e-books!  Our culture preserved, like Hari Seldon would do . . . if he read novels with names like “Whip Hand.”  Know what?  I pushed that metaphor too far – but an interesting idea of how literature can be preserved.
  • From books to music, a Github for musicians?  That’s Splice, actually.  Interesting bit of innovation there – makes me wonder what else could be done with this method . . .

Finally, some job news

– Steven “Climate Change is Real Dudes” Savage