Monday, August 4, 2014

Cracking the Code, Chapter Thirteen

Continuing from this post.

Frames need to address the different levels of consideration. E.g, making the big climate change argument works for most (except for the 1%ers and their conservative cronies, apparently). Yet it's harder to make the smaller argument about the cost effectiveness of solar panels on one's roof. The big picture of what's best for the planet has to balance with what's best in one's own financial interest and limitations. And the intermediate levels also need to be addressed: family, neighborhood, town, state, country. The smaller the level relates to benefits or what, the larger relates to features or why (see chapter 12), so both are necessary.

In the case of solar panels, the bottom layer needs to match the top layer. Germany accomplished this by passing legislation that mandated banks provide low-interest ten-year loans to install such panels, and further legislation that mandated that power companies buy back surplus solar-generated power at seven times the going rate, thereby making the panels affordable. Yes, the power companies pay more for the buy-back for 10 years, but that is offset by the price they would have paid for building a new nuke plant. After 10 years the buy-back is at the regular lower rate plus they get a new source of clean energy without having to pay for nuke plant maintenance, waste disposal etc. It also creates jobs in this tech and well as stimulate the economy overall. All the levels win. (I remind you at this point that a large motivational factor for Germany's plan is in direct response to working with Jeremy Rifkin's Third Industrial Revolution.)

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