Some Basic Economics of Climate Change


Weitzman M, Touffut J-P. Some Basic Economics of Climate Change. In: Changing Climate, Changing Economy. Edward Elgar ; 2009.
heep_discussion_10.pdf385 KB


Climate change is characterized by deep structural uncertainty in the science coupled with an economic inability to evaluate meaningfully the welfare losses from high temperature changes. The probability of a disastrous collapse of planetary welfare
from too much CO2 is non-negligible, even if this low probability is not objectively knowable. This paper attempts to explain (in not excessively technical language) some of the most basic issues in modeling the economics of catastrophic climate change.
The paper builds to a tentative conclusion that, no matter what else is done realistically to slow CO2 buildups, economic analysis lends some support to undertaking serious research now into the prospects of "fast geoengineering preparedness" - as a state-contingent emergency option offering at least the possibility of knocking down
catastrophic temperatures rapidly.

Book Editor: J-P Touffut
Last updated on 02/19/2016