A Survey Of Economists On Global Warming

This is very interesting: on another issue I know no “economist treehuggers” but I have met more than my fair share of economists who I deem as right on global warming. Please read this article!!!!!!
By Dan Vergano, USA TODAY

Researchers who deal in cold numbers rather than warming climates believe the “significant benefits from curbing greenhouse-gas emissions would justify the costs of action,” a new survey finds.In fact, the survey of economists finds 94% believe the U.S. should join climate agreements to limit global warming. CLIMATE CHANGE: Mount Kilimanjaro’s famous icy peaks are thawing fast INTERACTIVE GRAPHIC: What causes global warmingThe survey results to be released today come as debate over the economics of global warming moves center stage in Washington, D.C. Republican senators boycotted a hearing Tuesday over an Environmental Protection Agency analysis about the costs of a clean-energy bill. In addition, the United States and European Union are preparing for a December meeting in Copenhagen to discuss a climate treaty.  “An economist tree hugger is an imaginary creature,” says Michael Livermore of New York University‘s Institute for Policy Integrity, which conducted the survey. “But we found that economists really see climate change poses a lot of risk to the economy. “The survey approached the 289 economists who had published climate-related studies in the top 25 economics journals in the past 15 years. About half, 144, responded, and 75% agreed or strongly agreed on the “value” of greenhouse-gas controls. In 2006, the British government found that charging industries a fee for greenhouse-gas emissions would reduce gross domestic product globally about 1% by 2050. Last month, a National Research Council report found that burning fossil fuels, which release greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide, exerts a hidden $120 billion cost on the U.S. economy because of higher health costs, leaving aside climate damage. Greenhouse gases are transparent to sunlight but retain heat, warming the atmosphere. Industrial greenhouse-gas emissions have raised global average temperatures about 1.3 degrees Fahrenheit since 1905, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and will likely increase them from 3 to 7 degrees more by 2100.  “Many observers look at economists as skeptics of the need for (climate) mitigation,” says economist Gary Yohe of Wesleyan University in Middletown, Conn. But “most accept the unquestionable consensus from the natural scientist that the planet is warming and humans are to blame.”In the survey of economists:

•91.6% wanted a tax or “cap and trade” system, where polluters buy and sell emission permits, instead of regulation, to cut greenhouse gases.

 •84% agreed the effects of global warming “create significant risks” to the economy, particularly to agriculture, fishing, insurance and health.

•Of the 94.3% who favor the U.S. joining climate agreements to limit greenhouse-gas emissions, 57% say greenhouse-gas cuts should come “regardless of the actions of other countries.”

 Myron Ebell of the Competitive Enterprise Institute, which opposes limits to greenhouse gases, says the economists polled “vastly exaggerate the potential damages and vastly understate the costs of reducing emissions.”


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