Carbon Currency? Responding to the Scepticism

Radio Interview Series

Part 1 — Pricing Nature (Episode 13)

Could a New Global Currency Help Avert the Climate Crisis?

Part 2 — Pricing Nature (Episode 14)

Kim Stanley Robinson, Kate Raworth, and Delton Chen Discuss 'Carbon Currency'


Christine Barrington will take a close look at the “carbon currency” that was recently popularised in the novel, “The Ministry for the Future”.  In a series of interviews, Ronnie Lipschutz and Delton Chen will discuss and review the comments made by experts in Yale’s Pricing Nature Podcast (listen to Part 1 above, Episode #13). Della Duncan and Delton Chen will then discuss sustainability and how a parallel economy based on a carbon currency might fit into the popular narratives of ecological economists (listen to Part 2 above, Episode #14).

Radio Host
Christine Barrington

KSQD Community Radio
Broadcaster, transformational coach, and community facilitator.

Prof. Emer. Ronnie Lipschutz

Univ. California Santa Cruz
Specialist in energy, environmental policy, foreign policy, globalization, international and global affairs, politics, science and technology.

Della Duncan

Renegade Economist
Right livelihood coach, post-capitalist consultant, Senior Atlantic Fellow, host of the Upstream Podcast.

Dr. Delton Chen

Global Carbon Reward
Civil engineer, geo-hydrologist, and thought leader in public policies that use new digital currencies. Originator of the “carbon currency”, as appears in the novel, “The Ministry for the Future”.

Open Letter

The implications of introducing a carbon currency and new central bank mandates/policies for funding climate mitigation raises many questions. Before these questions can be answered, it is necessary to establish a sound conceptual model for (a) how the monetary system works (i.e. how and why money is created), (b) the possible reasons for increasing the money supply (e.g. to increase productivity), and (c) the possible reasons for reducing debt levels (e.g. to improve equity and social cohesion). But how can growth be responsibly managed when the available carbon budget is placing boundaries on total energy use, consumption, and GDP? What could/should we do about planetary boundaries?

The Open Letter proposes that a carbon currency and new mandates for central banks can/should be used to provide a “pubic finance guarantee”. The guarantee is designed to ensure that the value of the carbon currency is high enough to fund a sufficient amount of greenhouse gas removal and reductions (i.e. mitigation) over the very long-term. This public finance guarantee will introduce a new dynamic for private investing, and a new mix of debt-free and debt-based fiat currency for use by businesses and citizens. At the bottom of this webpage are four videos that offer a primer on the money supply and debt restructuring — but with the conventional assumptions of perpetual growth and the business cycle.

Open Letter by Dr Delton Chen

Show/Hide: Transcript of Episode #13 with Comments

Show/Hide: Open Letter in Response to Episode #13



The GCR team would like to acknowledge that the “Pricing Nature” podcast was produced by Casey R. Pickett, Naomi Shimberg, Jacob Miller and others at Yale University.

Public Notice

The views and opinions expressed by Delton Chen and his associates do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Yale Carbon Charge Podcast Network, KSQD Community Radio, or any other person or organisation that is mentioned on the GCR website.

Episode #13 — Guest Speakers

Suzi Kerr Chief Economist, EDF
Bill English Professor in the Practice of Finance, Formerly on the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System
Vanessa Fajans-Turner Executive Director, BankFWD; Candidate for Congress NY-22
Samuel Kortum Professor of Economics, Yale University
Frank Van Gansbeke Professor of the Practice, Middlebury College

Diana Cárdenas QOIN Foundation

Episode #14 — Guest Speakers

Kate Raworth Economist and Author, Doughnut Economics
Kim Stanley Robinson Author, The Ministry for the Future
Delton Chen Founder, Global Carbon Reward

Money Creation for Prosperity: A Primer

Debt Deleveraging for Social Cohesion: A Primer