We have an obligation to our (great)n grandkids. Not to leave them a clean balance sheet: they will be far richer than we. Not to leave them an unspoiled Earth: they will have no trouble cleaning up our messes. Our obligation is to lay the foundation for the continued growth of their welfare. An investment in how to pioneer space now will allow them to make oases in the vast lifeless, waterless, airless—cool—desert of space. Our forethought will help our descendants be able to settle the oases much as 17th century pioneers helped enable my great grandparents to easily leave Europe for New York in the first decade of the 20th century.
Solving global warming by reducing fossil fuel carbon emissions looks backward and down. Instead, look forward to raising carbon emissions and sequestering carbon. Look forward to more energy use and energy services for everyone. Look beyond to the next big global heat problem. Look up to see how space settlement can solve it. Raising our eyes from the ground to the horizon and beyond will allow us to focus on optimizing the future after we have secured it. I want to bequeath to my daughter the knowledge that humanity can live and thrive soon throughout the solar system. And, not too much longer after that, in the rest of the universe eternally.
Oh, James and Carlos are going to love this one.