Mature technology : Is this based on some wildly speculative set of assumptions, such as dropping the launch cost of rockets into orbit by a factor of 100, or the development o f materials that don’t yet exist? Scalability : Is this something that works on a small scale but could not really be scaled up as the basis for a new world order, like cars with lithium batteries?
Durability and replicability : How often will it need to be rebuilt? And how will that be done?
How much time will it take? : Is the time it would take to implement this plan roughly commensurate with the amount of time we have available before limits to growth, energy and materials discontinuities, irreversible CO 2 thresholds are reached, etc.?
Political acceptability : Will society welcome this, or does it first require a benevolent dictator or something else highly unlikely?
Aggregate probability : How many improbable things must go right, on schedule, for it to work at all, and what will happen in the meanwhile?
TaaL: I’d disagree that energy is difficult to understand. You have physical law and you have thermodynamics. Voila. It’s human beliefs about energy that are hard to understand. The Bottom Line: There is what can happen, what can’t happen, and what won’t happe n. Telling the first from the last is the tricky part.
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