Loving these options! Really creative, and they add a huge dimension. I also wanted to suggest a few tweaks about how they could impact other areas of the game in a more accurate way, based on some of my work in government.
It’s easy to imagine how a state-run water system might take better care of the environment. Some today, irl, invest in watersheds, daylighting of creeks, and wetlands restoration!
Similarly, a state-run energy company might see more pressure, esp at high funding levels to invest in wind and solar - look at Community Choice Aggregation systems. So perhaps this should impact the environment and CO2?
Tech and Productivity?
Government canfuel innovation the private sector won’t try - other tech features in the game already cover this. But thinking about how the state industries could impact this too…
… telecoms investments to far-out places and investments in reach (I know “speed” covers this a bit)
… water utilities improving treatment methods
This would actually be another policy, but it could make sense for there to be an option to move the government fleet to electric vehicles. This could accelerate the overall transition while improving the environment, a real effort by many governments of many sizes. Just think of all the police cars, repair trucks, etc the government runs!
Thing is, that’s very variable. I feel like there’s simply some missing nuance there in general. You can spend more on water by restoring stuff. Or you can spend more on pumping it out of the ground faster. Short term that’ll be a pretty good option, though long term it’d be catastrophic. And I think in practice, both happen around the world.
There probably should be an equivalent stat to Electric Car Transition for the power grid as well. I suppose Energy Efficiency kinda is that, but not quite. You can be highly energy efficient in that you use the vast majority of your coal power plant produced electricity in precisely the manner you want to, with hardly anything (beyond the inherent inefficiency of such a powerplant) going to waste. But still, it’s kinda related and could be used as a vague proxy perhaps.
I’d rather have Green Electric Grid Transition instead though.