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Economic and Social Studies of the Climate Crisis

Global warming is not just about the environment. It is deeply related to economics, society, and politics. Here are studies that examine the social dimension of our climate crisis.


Bloomberg Carbon Risk Valuation Tool. November 2013.
With stranded assets becoming an increasing concern among investors, Bloomberg has developed a tool that helps illustrate the potential impact of stranding on a company’s earnings and share price.

Busting the Carbon Budget: Low Carbon Economy Index. PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). November 2013.

For the fifth year running we have examined the rate of decarbonisation in the G20. And it’s not good reading. In 2008, when we first started the LCEI, we calculated that to maintain growth without exceeding two degrees of warming, the G20 needed to reduce its carbon intensity at 3.5% per year. Over the next four years the rate of decarbonisation failed to exceed 0.7%. By 2012, to make up for lost ground, the rate had risen to 5.1%, requiring a rate of decarbonisation never achieved in a single year to be sustained for the rest of the century.This year the challenge has again increased. Our model shows we now need to reduce carbon intensity by 6% every year from now till 2100. This is over eight times our current rate of decarbonisation. Even doubling the current 0.7% rate of decarbonisation puts us on a path consistent with the most extreme scenario presented by the IPCC, and potential warming of around 4°C by 2100. On current trends we will use up this century’s carbon budget by 2034 – sixty six years early. Put simply, we are busting the carbon budget.

Inaction on Climate Change: The Cost to Taxpayers. Ceres. November 2013.

When we examine the full costs of public programs that pay for disaster relief and recovery from extreme weather events—ad hoc disaster assistance appropriations, flood insurance, crop insurance, wildfire protection, and state run “residual market” insurance programs—we can begin to understand the price to U.S. taxpayers of inaction on climate change. As the frequency and severity of extreme weather events intensify with the effects of climate change, our federal and state disaster relief and insurance programs will become increasingly unsustainable as losses from such events increase. The net present value of the federal government’s liability for unfunded disaster assistance over the next 75 years could be greater than the net present value of the unfunded liability for the Social Security program.

by Barnhill, David L. last modified Dec 03, 2015 09:10 AM expired
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