Thursday, October 15, 2009

Climate Change - the battle of the price (#BAD09)

The majority of podcasts related to climate change dwell about the implications, the dangers that come with the phenomenon (on which next). My previous subject, the battle of the facts, pops up, over and over again, especially on the details, as there are so many conjectures, that little has been decided rather than largely and broadly, that the climate changes and we are responsible.

The seriousness of the implications carry a dimension with it that also explains why the battle of the facts is frequently to vehement, so political and that is simply this: climate change has a price. The price is going to be considerable. How high is hard to determine and if we are at all going to be able to handle the change, we must deal with paying the price. And if the rich of the world are not going to pay it with money, the poor are going to pay it with lives and the whole world with disasters.

I have yet found only one podcast lecture that explicitly took the price of Climate Change and the allocation of the costs as its subject: Controversies in the Economics of Climate Change, at the LSE podast lecture series.

A lecture by Professor Geoffrey Heal held on May 6th: on the economic cost climate change will cause. His starting point is that the scientific question about Climate Change has largely been decided. There is wide consensus the climate is changing. Heal's subject is to take these established facts and evaluate, as well as possible, what the cost of these changes are. He emphasizes that these issues are still widely debated, hence the controversies of climate change, but the way he deals with them is by suggesting that only the size of the cost is debatable. There will be costs and they are enormous.

His analysis range from rather accurate like his esteem that the costs of the rising sea level will go over 1% of GDP, to completely unknown. The damages to the ocean, the warming of the climate are factors that he thinks are hard to enumerate. natural disasters and the disappearance of a multitude of species are impossible to range. On all accounts the costs are gigantic. It is not a happy lecture for the worried. Yet one, I feel, you must have heard.

Blog Action Day 2009
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