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  • Writer's pictureDoug Hull

We need BHAGs!

Updated: Nov 5, 2021

In 1962 John F Kennedy famously declared the audacious goal of getting to the moon before the end of the decade. NASA had some ideas on how to achieve this, yet there was an overwhelming list of challenges to overcome and a huge amount of uncertainty over whether it was even possible. Regardless, JFK took the reins (and a giant leap of faith) and made the commitment at a time when the USA needed confidence. It worked, and 7 years later Neil Armstrong took his 'giant leap for mankind'. The goal that JFK declared became a line in the sand that everybody aligned themselves to and worked towards. It might have failed, yet it didn't. It proved that, given the right conditions, humans are exceptional and can do pretty much anything we set our collective minds to.

Fast forward to 2021, with COP26 looming large and the world's leaders all preparing to (hopefully!) share their commitments and plans. None of them wants to alienate their voters back home lest they lose their jobs at the next election. At the same time nobody wants to be seen by the global community as not doing enough to reduce emissions. Many of them (like Australia) are hoping that technology will save the day, and allow them to continue in their current ways, yet those technologies are still being developed and tested and many will fail. Some new ones that we haven't even thought of yet may still emerge and save the day. How can anybody see the future in a world that is changing at such a frighteningly rapid pace? We just don't know. Reducing fossil fuel use is no longer even debatable - it just has to happen - but how will we transition smoothly away from the fossil fuel era and into the renewable era? How will the economy handle this transition and how do we find new jobs to replace all those lost. These are huge challenges for the leaders of the world, and the solutions are not clear. We need these leaders to grab the bull by the horns and declare some Big Hairy Audacious Goals (BHAGs) to inspire action.

I don't believe the world's leaders should get hung up on the details of the 'How', rather we need to start by aligning on the 'What'. And by the 'What' I mean: Commitment to net zero by 2050. Even though we don't know exactly how we are going to get there, we still need to commit to the journey. One step at a time. We can make it work ... because humans are exceptional!

Until next time!


aka The Regeneralist

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