Reasonable Respones to Climate Change

ncpa-earthBy H. Sterling Burnett

Many people are concerned that an increasing concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere — due primarily to such human activities as burning fossil fuels for energy — is causing the Earth to warm, with potentially harmful results. In response, many developed countries agreed to the Kyoto Protocol on Climate Change, committing them to limit and eventually reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. The United States chose not to participate, in part because the agreement exempts such developing countries as China and India, although they have the world’s fastest-growing economies and emissions.

However, the Obama administration supports a cap-and-trade system similar to the one implemented by the Kyoto agreement. The U.S. Senate will debate a cap-and-trade proposal in fall 2009 under the American Clean Energy and Security Act. The initial version of the bill would have auctioned all of the emissions allowances, but business lobbies and special interests influenced Congress to give away 85 percent of them.

Climate researcher Chip Knappenberger estimates the bill would only reduce global temperatures by about one-tenth of a degree by 2050. The U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates it would reduce U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) by 0.2 percent over the period from 2012 to 2030 — but other organizations estimate the cost to be much higher:

  • Cap-and-trade would cost an average of $314 billion a year in lost GDP, according to Heritage Foundation estimates, or $9.4 trillion over the period from 2012 to 2035.
  • It could cost taxpayers up to $200 billion year, or $1,761 per family annually, according to a U.S. Treasury Department report.
  • It would increase the cost of residential electricity 31 percent to 50 percent by 2030, says the American Council for Capital Formation and the National Association of Manufacturers.
  • Job losses would total 2.5 million by 2030, estimates the National Black Chamber of Commerce.

In contrast to the economic costs of limits on greenhouse gas emissions there are responses to climate change that would have substantial economic benefits.

Climate change is mainly projected to add to existing problems, rather than create new ones. Focused adaptation addresses these problems — including malaria, hunger and coastal flooding — directly now, rather than indirectly in the future via emissions reductions. For example, according to the World Health Organization, malaria’s current yearly death toll of one million could be halved with annual expenditures of $1.5 billion or less (in 2003 dollars). By contrast, limiting emissions to 1990 levels, as called for under the Kyoto Protocol, would reduce the total number of people at risk from malaria in 2085 by 0.2 percent, while costing about $165 billion in 2010 alone.

Read the rest of this report from the National Center for Policy Analysis.

  • Neil F. AGWD

    You know, this is just the Bjorn Lomborg solution that they are talking about here. I really have no problem with this exept that it is still accepting the premise of the AGW hypothesis. Which is that man-made GHG’s are causing the planet to warm. When they are not. The planet is not warming, and it has not for the last twelve years.
    I’m all for tackling the real problems that are solvable. We should have been dealing with them from the start.
    How many people have died so far because of the effort to stop something that we think we caused (which isn’t happening, and even if it was we couldn’t stop because we are not the cause) because Al Gore said we did?
    For that matter how many people have died since Racheal Carson wrote the misinfomed Silent Spring?
    I bet if you add them all up it’s way more than every one that has lost their lives because of “George Bush’s war”.
    STOP ACCEPTING THE PREMISE THAT AGW IS CAUSING WARMING!!!!!!
    YOU idiots!!

  • Rob N. Hood

    Yes, I agree- let’s keep trashing the environment, and not worry about the planet. I dont’ want to be bothered by these scary complicated things, I just want to be able to live life the way we Americans have always done- wantonly and wastefully- it’s the best way! So what if we have to have wars where our young soldiers have to die and get maimed so we can have cheap oil- it’s a free country and nobody forced them, right? Plus it’s patriotic to die for your country. And who cares about the savages that die in the countries we invade? Too bad too sad!

  • paul wenum

    Why bother with a comment. It wastes my one finger typing.

  • Rob N. Hood

    In the 1950s movie “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”, townspeople are overtaken by giant seed pods and transformed into plant life. Often thought to be an allegory about the effect of political propaganda on society, the film’s chilling premise is that ordinary people can devolve into an uncomprehending non-human condition. Today’s radical right-wing media darlings keep devotees in a persistent intellectually vegetative state that must be challenged at every opportunity so that intelligent life can be preserved, no matter how intractable that task may seem.

    Beam me up Scotty…

  • Paul Wenum

    You will never change. Even if God came down and talked to you, you would be adverse to all trained educated thoughts or opinions. I hope you sleep good at night. Wait until the bills pile up after all the socialist changes are made. Have a funny feeling that your mind-set will change. Of course, that wasn’t in the left’s playbook, or was it??? Saul Alinsky loves you. AG schill.

  • Rob N. Hood

    First of all if that happened I would question my sanity, then I would consider the logic and reasoning of what I heard from God. And I have a feeling that he and I would see more “eye to eye” than you people would. A person needs to be very careful about having face to face chats with God, cuz it could be part of a mental illness- a fairly common problem.

  • paul wenum

    Because I believe I have an illness? I know the answer from you.

  • Rob N. Hood

    I didn’t say that. Just saying most people who go around believing they talk to God are not necessarily sane. And although I am not a particularly religious person it seems pretty clear to me that my personal beliefs more closely match that of Jesus than the business as usual greed/profit based society that you guys seem to worship.

  • paul wenum

    It’s not greed, it is reality. Profits keep you in business to pay employees, invest in new equipment to make a better product or service. It is apparent that you have never been responsible for the “bottom line.”

  • Rob N. Hood

    It’s degrees of something that makes it good or bad, right or wrong, at least for most issues. The world (reality) isn’t and should’t be black and white like you would prefer. Being able to distinguish other alternatives to simply “this or that” is what makes humans intelligent.

    We’d still be living in caves if guys like you and Neil were the proto-type.

  • Paul Wenum

    As stated numerous times. Truth will prevail. If that is black and white in my mind, yes, I would prefer that. It is the lack of using you intelligence and listening to “big brother” speak and tell us what the truth is by their definition is what concerns and alerts people ilke Neil and I to question there alleged “Truth.” Remember, Albert Gore would not debate Global Warming, if you did you were an idiot. Th case was closed in his small profitable mind.

  • Rob N. Hood

    If Al Gore is indeed one of the evil elite that rule and profit from the serfs (you and me), then he is of course not the only one, and it would also be fairly impossible in the real world for ONLY Liberals to be in on it. There are bad guys on BOTH sides who are screwing us blind. THAT is what you need to understand, and until you guys do understand that NOTHING will change.

  • Paul Wenum

    For once we agree Boy! GE for one (light bulbs). Ethenal is two, Where’s our water going to go after depleted and our food prices triple? Wind power? Wheres the grid? It’s not built and if so would cost trillions to build a new one. Birds dying in migration plus space taken for crops to go? All by profiteers like Solro’s/Gore, as well as others that see a “profit” off ignorance by people like you and I. Take a poll of your neighbors. Not one out of ten gives a rip other than the Vikings won on Sunday and I have season tickets and haven’t gone for 12 years!

    Finally, you are only a “serf”, if you let people make you one.
    Be who you are, don’t let anything get in your way when you know in your heart you are right. As said, TRUTH always prevails. Never forget that!!

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