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Providing Insight
Into Climate Change
Economics
23Articles

Climate Science and Economics

Strong correlations between solar activity and climate indicate and the recent grand maximum of solar activity indicates that much of the warming of the 20th century was natural. Climate models do not include most natural climate change and they are now running much to hot. Bulk atmosphere temperature trends are 2.5 times the measurements. The CO2 induced warming from 2018 to 2100 may be only 0.6 °C. Some economic models of climate change fail to include benefits of warming and CO2 fertilization of plants. Cold kills 17 times as many as hot weather, so warming will reduce temperature related deaths. The Alberta climate plan will increase cumulative electricity costs to 2030 by $3.3 to $5.9 billion. Warming may benefit the world by US$ 3 trillion/yr by 2100.



Dark Green Money - the Big Green Funding Machine

Major private foundations use their wealth and power to influence social movements and governments to fund green programs and provide grants to environmental organizations. Foundation and government funding affects climate policy and promotes the thesis that Canada should undertake very costly measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Two Canadian government agencies together spend $1.14 billion dollars per year on climate programs. United States foundations are spending more than U.S. $100 million per year to influence government climate policy and block Canadian resource development.



The Economics of the IPCC’s Special Report on Limiting Temperatures to 1.5 °C

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published a special report (SR15) on the impacts of global warming of 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels on October 8, 2018. The report says the cost of mitigating CO2 emissions in 2030 to meet the 1.5 °C target is about 880 US$/tCO2. Using a climate sensitivity based on observations including effects of natural climate change, urban warming and the best available economic model, the mitigation proposal will prevent a benefit of 8 $/tCO2, for a total loss of 888 $/tCO2 mitigated.



Calculating the “Social Cost” of CO2 Emissions Using FUND

The social cost of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions (SCCO2) is defined as the social worldwide costs (net of benefits) of emitting one tonne of CO2 into the atmosphere. The estimated SCCO2 is used for doing cost-benefit calculations for proposed government regulations. Integrated assessment models are used to estimate the SCCO2 considering demographic and economic variables in addition to the physical climate system. The temperature responses in IAM approximately match complex climate models. One of the IAMs, FUND, is freely available. This article presents plots and tables that give some idea of what FUND does. Using a 3% discount rate FUND calculates net damages of US$8.3/tCO2 if the climate sensitivity is 3.5 °C, and US$4.4/tCO2 of net benefits if the climate sensitivity is 1.0 °C for emissions in 2010, in constant US$2016.



Solar and Wind Power Cost about 9 times That of Electricity from Other Sources

Europe provides an example of what happens to electricity prices with increasing levels of wind and solar installed capacity per person. The plot below shows the average 2017 residential cost of electrical power against the installed capacity of solar and wind power per capita in each country. Germany, with 1144 W/capita of installed solar plus wind capacity in 2017, generated only 25.8% of its electricity from solar and wind. The best-fit line implies that the effective average solar and wind electricity costs in Europe are 9.2 times that of electricity from other sources, mainly fossil fuels. The resulting high electricity costs in countries with high installed solar and wind capacity is severely harming the economies of those countries. Industries that require large amounts of electric power are moving to less efficient countries which reduces wealth and increases global CO2 emissions.




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