Jul 17, 2014
Hi greencanary, Thanks for this proposal. One question I find myself wondering while reading is why would banks/mortgage lenders want to give up their 4.5% interest rates on mortgages to fund energy efficient homes (i.e. what's in it for them)?. I like the idea and hope that you can find ways to make it viable! -Shane
Jul 22, 2014
Hi Bill This is exactly the sort of idea needed to convert obsolete buildings into a future zero (or better) carbon housing stock. On first reading I didn't fully follow whether the new financing would be newly created money or recycled from somewhere? Also whether it would be national or local currency? Sorry, this is probably clear in the proposal and I missed it. The proposal also expands the scope of climate policy by inviting the question, does a full climate response also require a revised banking system? Thanks for referencing the paper that includes this aspect! http://blindspot.org.uk/seventh-policy-switch/ A related proposal focuses on carbon negative local activity funded by new local money supply. https://www.climatecolab.org/web/guest/plans/-/plans/contestId/1300404/planId/1309209 James
Jul 22, 2014
Hi Shane, Thank you for taking the time to read my proposal. To answer your question -- I don't think banks would ever agree to forgo interest in order to promote energy efficient homes. That is the reason I am suggesting that we finance efficient homes entirely outside the banking system. Having said that I think the problem you are having understanding my proposal is the same problem I have whenever I try to discuss the issues with anyone. We have so thoroughly bought into the system that we just can't imagine that there is an alternative available to us. Bill
Jul 22, 2014
Hi James, Part of the problem with understanding my proposal is that I have no background in economics or finance other than to be able to punch numbers into a financial calculator to see just how badly we, along with the environment, are being screwed by the banking and financial systems that we think we have to rely on in order to survive. As a result I have trouble expressing my ideas in the language best understood by readers who are better educated along economic lines than I am. To try to clarify my position, I envision that the investment of anything needed to build or remodel a home to the energy efficient standards we adopt, will be documented by some form of equities, whether that be in the form of a stock, bond, partnership interest or anything else that will work. Locally we have an over abundance of land, empty homes and labor that will be invested if we can manage to provide enough short term liquidity to at least convince labor to invest their labor in exchange for equities. This short term liquidity will be the most difficult problem but orders simpler than reforming the banking or political system to achieve our goals. Labor will account for at least 50% of the needed investment. The two ways of creating short term liquidity is to allow labor equities to be exchanged for equity in an energy efficient home and/or to be spent for locally available goods and services. To complete the cycle it will be necessary for the Trust to manage cash flow in such a way that the local providers of goods and services will be able to redeem the equities received in trade, on demand, for their current value. While this may be difficult the economic development and job creation are a necessary part of creating a sustainable community. From my experience as a retired builder of passive solar rammed earth buildings in the Southwest, the amount of national currency needed will be between 25% and 40%. The expectations of cash investors for liquidity will not be any different that investors in corporations or partnerships, so we do not need to make any special arrangements for this group of investors. As projects mature the need for short term liquidity of equities used as a local currency will diminish, as willing investors buy them up, and I can even see that local businesses may be willing to discount goods and services for equities both because the equities will increase in value in relation to the dollar and to stimulate business. Bill
Aug 6, 2014
It is difficult to understand the viability of the trust. Is it possible to utilize more traditional investment vehicles to accomplish similar goals?
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