The Princeton Net-Zero America Project (NZAP) shows that the U.S. could transition to a net-zero-emitting energy system over the next 30 years at a cost comparable to what the nation has spent on its fossil-dominated energy system over the last 30 years (On the Campus, February issue). This is true both for net-zero options that would be 100 percent renewable and for those that would retain some use of decarbonized fossil or nuclear sources. If NZAP’s fossil-fuel funders somehow guided these results, as Lynne Archibald ’87 suggested in a recent letter (Inbox, May issue), then the companies evidently wish to promote the extinction of their industry.
One of NZAP’s key findings is that actions needed in the 2020s are the same whether we are in pursuit of a 100 percent renewable energy system, or one that retains some nuclear or decarbonized fossil assets. The letter writer’s all-or-nothing argument is unnecessarily divisive and works against efforts to focus effectively on what we need to do now.