Climate Change climate action cost

Published on April 7th, 2012 | by Zachary Shahan

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UK Report: Cost of Stopping Climate Change = Pennies a Day (Less than Inaction)

April 7th, 2012 by

 
A UK Committee on Climate Change (CCC) report this week came out and showed that UK emission reductions would cost 1 to 2 percent of the country’s total GDP, just pennies a day per capita. “Statutory Advice on Inclusion of International Aviation and Shipping” reconfirms estimates made by the widely cited Stern Review half a decade ago.

The emissions reduction referenced is the UK’s 80% reduction on 1990 levels by 2050.

Here’s more from Mother Jones:

“It’s a very compelling economic case to act,” says David Kennedy, CEO of the CCC, an independent statutory body charged with advising parliament on all things climate. “You don’t need radical behavior and lifestyle change to achieve our climate objectives.”

“It’s a very, very small impact on growth. And what you get for that is a whole range of economic benefits.”

This table from the report details the cost in 2050 of meeting emissions reductions in a few different scenarios, including if fuel prices are high or low:

The Committee on Climate Change (UK)

For people who make wild claims about the cost of action, Kennedy writes: “They talk about the economy being closed down, about an ‘end to growth,’ Well, that is frankly nonsense, and the debate should be around the correct number.”

Of course, many have found that the costs of inaction are far, far greater than the cost of action.

“A 2009 survey of 289 of the world’s top economists with expertise on climate change found broad consensus that the benefits of action outweighed the cost.”

I’ve covered the overwhelmingly cheaper option of climate action a few times recently here on Planetsave. Here’s a top article on that if you are interested in reading more on this topic: Economist Nordhaus Corrects WSJ Global Warming Nonsense.

And here’s another fun one: Total Shocker! Trillions of Dollars Put on Unique Idea that Climate Change Prevention is Cheaper than Cleaning up the Aftermath.

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About the Author

is the director of CleanTechnica, the most popular cleantech-focused website in the world, and Planetsave, a world-leading green and science news site. He has been covering green news of various sorts since 2008, and he has been especially focused on solar energy, electric vehicles, and wind energy since 2009. Aside from his work on CleanTechnica and Planetsave, he's the founder and director of Solar Love, EV Obsession, and Bikocity. To connect with Zach on some of your favorite social networks, go to ZacharyShahan.com and click on the relevant buttons.



  • M. Lin

    Here is my first draft of an International Petition for Global Climate Change Treaty. Your thoughts appreciated – you can contact me at mary@inventingearth.org . I’d like to get this circulating before May 1:

    “Dear World Leaders,

    We, the citizens of Earth, demand that national and world leaders enforce limits on climate change gas emissions by industry that will result in reduction said gases to below the safe level agreed upon by the planet’s foremost scientists: 350 parts per million.

    We demand that limits be put in place in our own countries regardless of the cooperation of other nations such that, were all nations following the same guidelines, we would reach 350 PPM by the year 2050.

    We demand that legislation outlining these limits be written this year and enacted before the end of 2015.

    We also urge you to mount the educational campaigns and the emergency measures that will help citizens of our countries to adapt to the climate change consequences we’re already experiencing: increased natural disasters, desertification, extremes of weather and temperature, and impacts on our food and water supplies.

    The future of the world is in your hands.

    With hope,

    (sign here)

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