Guest post by Indur M. Goklany
Damian Carrington’s Environment Blog at the Guardian proclaims: Climate deal: A guarantee our children will be worse off than us. This myth —perhaps myth-take would be a better word—has been addressed previously at WUWT.
In the post—Are today’s poorer generations morally obliged to solve problems that may or may not confront tomorrow’s much wealthier generations?—it was shown that even after accounting for the worst case estimates of damages due to climate change under the warmest IPCC scenario, the average inhabitant of today’s developing countries will be at least twice as wealthy in 2100 as the average American today. By 2200, the former will be almost three times wealthier than the latter.
See the following figure.
Figure: Net GDP per capita, 1990-2200, after accounting for the 95th percentile estimate of damages from global warming per the Stern Review for four major IPCC emission and climate scenarios. The Stern Review estimate accounts for damages from market impacts, non-market (i.e., environment and public health) impacts and the risk of catastrophe. For 2100 and 2200, the scenarios are arranged from the warmest (A1FI) on the left to the coolest (B1) on the right. The average global temperature increase from 1990 to 2085 for the scenarios are as follows: 4°C for AIFI, 3.3°C for A2, 2.4°C for B2, and 2.1°C for B1. For context, in 2006, GDP per capita for industrialized countries was $19,300; the United States, $30,100; and developing countries, $1,500. Source: Indur M. Goklany, “Discounting the Future.” Regulation, Spring 2009, Vol. 32, pp. 36–40
There is simply no basis for the Damian Carrington’s claim. In fact, this figure indicates that higher economic growth will more than offset any damages from climate change.