This article discusses the best method to curb greenhouse gas emissions is to tackle the problem in a few medium-size chunks. The models that researchers use to predict changes in the global climate depend upon knowledge of atmospheric science, which has become increasingly sophisticated, and expected carbon emissions from human sources. That latter part is truly unknowable. Wars and plagues might well decimate the global population, and thus reduce its contribution to the atmosphere. Some unforeseen technological breakthrough could render coal, oil, and natural gas obsolete. The European Union has had a trial with a carbon-trading market that might be a means to support efficiency and carbon-avoidance programs. One of the most important places where the new realization has taken hold is in the engineering community, which is much more open to the idea of getting on board with solutions to climate change.

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