Question the story of climate change
Editor’s Note: The following is an excerpt from Unsettled: Steven E. Koonin, what Climate Science teaches, what it doesn’t, and why it matters. The first two simple ones are from the introduction. One shows the basic treatise of the book and the other is a summary of the background of Qoonin. The third is a longer, lighter edit from the chapter titled “Apocalypses That Ain’t”. Here, Koonin describes the economic impact of climate change. First, from “science”. We should all know what “science” is saying. “Science” is said to have been resolved. How many times have you heard of it? Humans are already destroying the climate of the earth. It’s a tragedy where temperatures are rising, sea levels are skyrocketing, ice is disappearing, heat waves, storms, droughts, floods and wildfires are getting worse in the world. Greenhouse gas emissions are causing all of this. And unless they are immediately eliminated by fundamental changes in society and its energy system, “science” says the Earth is destined. Good. .. .. Not perfect. Yes, the earth is warming, and human beings are affecting the earth. But beyond that — in other words, the classic movie Princess Bride, “I don’t think’science’is saying what you think.” For example, summarizing the current state of climate science. Both the research literature and the government report that we evaluate clearly show that heat waves in the United States are now less common than in 1900, and that the warmest temperatures in the United States have not risen. The last 50 years. Most are incredible when I say this to people. Some gasping. And some become quite hostile. But these are arguably not the only climate facts you’ve never heard of. There are three more things that may surprise you, drawn directly from recently published studies or the latest assessments of climate science published by the US Government and the United Nations: Humans have detectable effects on hurricanes over the past century. Is not given. Greenland’s ice sheets aren’t shrinking much more today than they were 80 years ago. The net economic impact of human-induced climate change will be minimal, at least until the end of this century. So what gives. .. .. ?? * * * I am a scientist — I strive to understand the world through measurement and observation and to articulate both the excitement and meaning of that understanding. Early in his career, he enjoyed using high-performance computer modeling (which is also an important tool for much of climate science) to do this for esoteric phenomena in the nuclear domain. .. But since 2004, I’ve spent about a decade turning the same approach to climate and its impact on energy technology. I first helped guide the government’s investment in energy technology and climate science as a chief scientist at BP, an oil company focused on promoting renewable energy, and then as a science minister at the Obama administration’s Ministry of Energy. It was. I found great satisfaction in these roles and helped define and catalyze actions to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. This is an agreed requirement to “save the planet.” But then the question began. .. .. From Chapter 9: “The Apocalypse Not” In 2018, the day after Thanksgiving (Black Friday), Volume 2 of the 4th National Climate Assessment (NCA2018) was released. It dealt with the anticipated impacts of anthropogenic climate change and immediately generated the now familiar headlines that warn of imminent economic disasters. Among them, “Climate change will overturn the US economy” (NBC News) “Climate report warns of a tough economy Results” (Fox News) “Climate change can cost billions of dollars “(Financial Times)” The US Climate Report Warns of Environmental Damage and Economic Shrinkage “(New York Times) Indeed, Key Message No. 2 of Chapter 29 of the report states: It is written. In the absence of more important global mitigation efforts, climate change is projected to cause serious damage to the US economy, human health, and the environment. In high-emission, limited-adaptation or no-adaptation scenarios, annual losses in some sectors are estimated to reach hundreds of billions of dollars by the end of this century. Both the important message and the heated headlines disappointed me a lot — they are clearly meant to be horrifying. Still, I studied this issue and knew that the expected net economic impact would be minimal. Please let me explain. I first looked at the economic impact of climate change in 2017, a year before one of the world’s largest investment organizations sought advice on climate science. They asked me to cover the economic implications, so I carefully read what the United Nations Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) says about the issue. Predictions of the economic impact of changing climates are highly uncertain. Of course, we already know that there is great uncertainty about how climate will change due to inadequate climate models and future emission uncertainties. Also, climate uncertainty is greater at the regional level than at the global level. For example, during the first five to six years of the recent California drought, many climate scientists have stated that human impacts on climate have increased the risk of drought. However, it took only about a year after the dramatic drought in 2016 to publish a treatise claiming that a warming world means California’s wetness. Perhaps this is just a process of refining scientific understanding. Not very charitable, but I have a clear sense that science is unstable enough and that unusual weather can be “caused” by human influence. Moreover, climate is just one of many factors affecting economic development and well-being. Economic policy, trade, technology and governance are also important, which vary from country to country and can change in unpredictable ways. Economic measures are very regional and their future uncertainty is exacerbated by the uncertainty of regional climate forecasts. Faced with so many unknowns, it is especially difficult to predict how and how much damage a rising temperature will do to society. Among them are roles that can be played by adaptation measures such as revetment raising and any changes. Crops are cultivated that minimize or sometimes use the effects of climate change. Despite these challenges, AR5’s Working Group II, whose assessment is partly devoted to the ecological and social impacts of climate change outlined by Working Group I, warms global economic activity. It says something about how it is affected by the earth. Figure 9.4, a graph included in Unsettled, shows that by 2100, projected global temperature rises of up to 3 ° C (now familiar) will have a negative impact on the global economy by less than 3%. Plots published estimates. For discussions with investors, I provided some important contexts that were missing in the UN report. The 3% impact of 2100 (about 80 years from now) corresponds to a decline in annual growth of an average of 3% divided by 80 (about 0.04% per year). The IPCC scenario (discussed in Chapter 3) assumes an average global annual growth rate of approximately 2 percent by 2100. In that case, the climate impact would be a 0.04% reduction in that 2% growth rate, resulting in a 1.96% growth rate. In other words, a UN report states that the economic impact of human-induced climate change is negligible, at best road uplift. In fact, the first point of the executive summary in Chapter 10 is: In most economic sectors, the impact of climate change will be small compared to the impact of other factors (moderate evidence, high consensus). Changes in population, age, income, technology, relative prices, lifestyles, regulations, governance, and many other aspects of socio-economic development affect the supply and demand of economic goods and services that are significant compared to the effects of climate change. Gives. The 2018 article, written by one of the IPCC’s coordinating lead authors, reviewed published papers for another four years and reached similar conclusions. The total economic impact of climate change is negative, but on average modest. .. .. The serious impact on developing countries is mainly caused by poverty. The consensus of minimizing the overall economic impact of rising temperatures is well known to experts, but it is inconvenient for those who want to warn the climate. When I asked a prominent environmental policymaker about the UN’s reputation, I was stunned. “Yes, it’s a shame that the number of impacts is very small. Anyway, this background was ready to consider the breathtaking coverage of the release of Volume II of NCA 2018. The final chapter of that report. The final figure is based on a 2017 paper published in Science, which shows that the projected direct damage to the US economy at the end of the century will increase with rising global average temperatures. Shown (shown as anomalies compared to the 1980-2010 average). Similar to the IPCC forecast of the global economy, the impact on the United States is small. Very low at 5 ° C (9 ° F) at the end of the century. When a major warming occurs in the US economy, the US economy will decline by 4%. (Note that this 5 ° C warming is related to today’s temperature, which is 1 ° C higher than pre-industrial values. This is equivalent to a warming of 6 ° C due to the accounting of the Paris Agreement, which sets 1.5 ° C as follows. Target.) NCA 2018 puts this in context, as in the UN report. I can’t, but I can do that very easily. The US economy has grown at an average annual rate of 3.2% since 1930 (now about 20 times more) 90 years ago). Under the conservative assumption that annual economic growth will average 2% over the next 70 years, the US economy will be four times as large in 2090 as it is now, to a climate of 4% in 2090. The impact of is equivalent to two years of growth. In other words, an additional warming of 5 ° C (9 ° F) by 2090 will only slow the growth of the US economy until then (70 years from now). It will be delayed by two years .. .. Within hours of the release of NCA 2018 on Black Friday, I drafted a short editorial, more or less saying what I said here, which the Wall Street Journal online on Monday. The next day, a prominent US energy economist sent me an email thanking me for pointing out the issue. Unfortunately, that person cannot publicly express his gratitude. The following week, one of the authors of the original 2017 research treatise from which the estimates used in the assessment report were drawn expressed disappointment in the way their results were portrayed in the media. , Especially the authors of NCA2018, responded silently to my dissertation. They do nothing to deal with the devastating blow of the media. was. Perhaps they were embarrassed by the muttering of their own destiny. Or, just as they wanted the impact numbers to be higher, like the policy makers mentioned earlier, that was exactly what they wanted. As you may have noticed, the concept of climate-related economic disasters is alive and well in the media and political dialogue. Economics is called “gloomy science,” and I once joked to a prominent economist that the combination of climate and economic forecasting was a “double gloomy” enterprise. It is reasonable to expect that factors related to climate change, such as changing agricultural conditions and changing storm patterns, will have different economic implications (and benefits) for a particular population or economic sector. But contrary to common belief, even official assessment reports will have a negligible net economic impact on either the global or US economy by the end of this century. It shows that.