The fact that so many old jobs have dried up means there’s a huge pool of workers available for the new industries needed to combat our one truly existential problem: climate change. You know those disaster movies where there’s an asteroid headed for Earth and the government launches a secret trillion-dollar project to intercept it and/or build underground shelters? Climate change is like the asteroid, but in slow motion, and it’s going to take a wartime-scale mobilization of people and technologies to blunt it. Not only do we have to figure out how to power our civilization without emitting carbon dioxide, methane, and other pollutants into the atmosphere, but we must find ways to suck the current excess of greenhouse gases back out of it. In short, “We need an historic commitment to put people to work building the infrastructure and technology base for a massive and speedy shift away from coal, oil, and gas to renewable forms of energy.” That’s Al Gore speaking, in his 2010 book Our Choice—which, by the way, has been turned into a fantastic iPad app. Did you hear that put people to work part?