$2 trillion cost to de-carbonise the world is actually a bargain

● By Terry Barker, University of Cambridge ● We can avoid the worst effects of climate change, say a team of Imperial College energy engineers in a recent study, and it will only cost US$2 trillion a year, at most. This sounds an unfeasibly large sum of money but in fact amounts to around 1% of projected world GDP in 2050. The study is clear on its assumptions, well-researched and balanced, and a useful update on earlier studies of a least-cost engineered solution to the problem. But it does not include the effects of how the wider economy would respond to the transformation of the energy system. GDP could be higher or lower, for example, depending on the economic policies required to bring about the change. Man-made global warming is happening, climate scientists have warned again in the latest, fifth IPCC report released a few days ago. Since the previous report in 2007, levels of confidence have risen to 95% following greatly expanded lines of evidence that confirm earlier predictions. As is well understood, the problem is several centuries-worth of man-made greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. This is already higher than at any time over the last 800,000 years. If we do not slow and ultimately stop adding to this build up of emissions then the potential for further damage rises. The Imperial College study argues that halving CO2 by 2050 will be enough to bring the prospective eventual rise of global temperatures to below 2°C. After 2050, this reduction must continue in order to maintain stable temperatures. Creating value from decarbonisation Drawing upon the International Energy Agency’s 2010 report on the prospects for energy technologies, the researchers have trawled the literature for costs of low-carbon equipment and vehicles ...Zum vollständigen Artikel

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