Detecting and having discussions about climate change resolutions represents a huge communication gap. We seek scientists to analyze the issue and communicators to describe how to resolve it.
That’s where John Doerr who is Kleiner Perkins’ venture capitalist steps in. Doerr’s book on fixing climate change, Speed & Scale, just struck the bestseller list of the New York Times. The popularity the book gained is reflecting a passion to tap into the extent of the climate crisis and to have it expressed sharply.
Climate Crisis Is a Bigger Issue Than Any Other Challenge
The venture capitalist is an engineer by training and an investor who made early, bold bets on Google and Amazon. Through 2006, Doerr has given rise to Silicon Valley’s ‘cleantech’ movement to analyze and finance entrepreneurs who are handling climate problems, a crisis that is way bigger than any other challenge he went through.
Doerr writes “To avert irreversible, catastrophic consequences, we need to act urgently and decisively.”
Doerr is a student of clear and direct communication. His book starts with a story of Franklin D. Roosevelt noting a three-part framework to conquer World War II on a napkin. The napkin encouraged Doerr for condensing his idea, explained in over 400 pages, onto a portrait of the dimension of a napkin.
The brief version of Doerr’s action framework that can fit on a napkin seems like this:
Net Zero by 2050
- Electrify transportation
- Fix food
- Decarbonize the grid
- Clean up industry
- Protect nature
- Remove carbon using: policy & politics, movements, innovation, and investment.
Doerr’s Growth Strategy
Doerr established a development idea called OKRs that are utilized at Google and numerous startups and enterprises. An OKR is an abbreviation for Objectives and Key Results. It’s a growth strategy and a communication device as it helps the team to remain focused on the big picture and gives definite measures to achieve the goal.
According to Doerr, the top-line objective to “stave off a climate catastrophe” must be to reach “Net-zero emissions by 2050—and to get halfway there by 2030.”
The term “net-zero” is given in almost every policy conversation for climate change resolutions, but certain people describe it as transparently as Doerr. Net-zero is just “the point where we add no more greenhouse gas into the atmosphere than we can remove.”
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Writing about a complex subject in conversational English to set up his case for an efficient climate strategy Doerr writes “I must warn you upfront,” adding “We’re not cutting emissions fast enough to outrun the damage on our doorstep. What we’re doing is not nearly enough.”
Doerr asks “Do we have enough time?” adding “We hope so, but we’re fast running out of it.
“Do we have much margin for error?”
“No, we don’t. Not anymore.”
“Do we have enough money?”
“Not yet. We’ll need a lot more funding from both public and private sectors to develop and scale technologies for a clean economy.”
Doerr Clarifies the Complex Jargon
Doerr also explains the complicated jargon that is part of climate conversations. Rather than presuming that everyone can explain usually used phrases, he does it for us.
For instance, “By electrifying transportation, we mean switching from gasoline and diesel engines to fleets of plug-in electric bikes, cars, trucks, and buses. By decarbonizing the grid, we mean replacing fossil fuels with solar, wind, and other zero-emissions sources,” Doerr writes.
His website provides a cost-free printed poster or digital download that gives an idea of Doerr’s action plan. It’s an incredible case of explaining complicated details simply, clearly, and visually.
The front of the 11 x 18” poster mentions the ten necessary goals that he calls must be considered immediately, whereas the back of the poster provides 55 explained objectives to endorse the goals.
The detailed information of any plan makes sense only when observers have knowledge about the big picture and completely have clarification about the meaning of words and phrases.
As per Doerr, the implementation of any big plan needs a transparent and measurable objective. It also seeks to provide a clear and easy clarification; expertise that Doerr has conquered after investing 40 years in big resolutions for bigger issues.