Putting a price tag on global warming

Stephen Beard Oct 30, 2006
HTML EMBED:
COPY

Putting a price tag on global warming

Stephen Beard Oct 30, 2006
HTML EMBED:
COPY

TEXT OF STORY

MARK AUSTIN THOMAS: Climate change could cost the world economy more than $6 trillion unless drastic international action is taken now. That’s the thrust of a major study commissioned by the British government being released today. From London, Marketplace’s Stephen Beard reports.


STEPHEN BEARD: The study accepts that dramatic climate change is not certain to happen, but says the risk of its undeniable.

And the economic consequences could be dire: It could over time trigger the world’s worst recession since the 1930s, shrinking the global economy by 20%.

The report calls for world greenhouse gas emissions to be cut by three quarters over the next 50 years. That would cost the global economy about 1% of its annual growth. Not a bad insurance policy says economist John Hawkesworth,

JOHN HAWKESWORTH: By giving up six to 12 months of economic growth in the long-term you can actually mitigate very significantly those risks. So just like taking out insurance on your house or whatever, it seems like a pretty good deal economically.

The British Government has backed the study and appointed former U.S. Vice President Al Gore as an adviser, a clear attempt to win more American support for the battle against climate change.

In London, this is Stephen Beard for Marketplace.

We’re here to help you navigate this changed world and economy.

Our mission at Marketplace is to raise the economic intelligence of the country. It’s a tough task, but it’s never been more important.

In the past year, we’ve seen record unemployment, stimulus bills, and reddit users influencing the stock market. Marketplace helps you understand it all, will fact-based, approachable, and unbiased reporting.

Generous support from listeners and readers is what powers our nonprofit news—and your donation today will help provide this essential service. For just $5/month, you can sustain independent journalism that keeps you and thousands of others informed.