Economic Implications Of Global Warming Essay

4952 Words 20 Pages
Register to read the introduction… The key questions are the costs (to both the United States and the rest of the world) of climate change and the comparable costs of controlling or reducing greenhouse gas emissions; the effects on international competitiveness if the commitments made by nations are uneven (as they will be because major developing countries have not accepted binding commitments); and the effects on employment and growth in specific industries or sectors.
Unfortunately, the economic dimension of global warming is more speculative than the scientific dimension and even less amenable to convincing analysis. Even the element that is most directly tied to science, i.e., the advances in alternative energy technologies that can be expected, cannot be determined in advance. The canonical figure usually used by economists, that technological change will lead to improvements in productivity (indicated by primary energy consumption per unit of GDP) of 1 percent per year, is only an assumption made for modeling purposes. And in any case, increases in productivity depend on the extent to which resources are committed to
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It has stimulated an intense international process of institution building, interaction, and negotiations on the part of governments, their citizens, and the United Nations. Yet in the United States - the largest greenhouse gases polluter in the world - it has ecome entwined in internal political and economic debates made possible by the degree of uncertainty surrounding the science. As long as that uncertainty persists, other factors will bedevil efforts to agree on a policy direction.
The uncertainty does not have to be removed entirely to permit a new political consensus to be attained, however. Continuing research on the forces at work, the indicators of climate change, and the available policy options is essential and it should gradually lead to greater knowledge about the issue and the development of real policy choices. However, in a situation that is so dominated by extraneous pressures, it is especially important that the scientific and engineering communities (including economists and other social scientists) maintain their professional integrity and

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