Monday, August 21, 2006


Just as many of the models that are predicated on anthropogenic global warming are built on poor assumptions, many of the policies proposed to mitigate the effects of global warming are also based on bad assumptions.

It is assumed that the benefits we will reap from ‘preventing’ global warming will outweigh the costs of the polices themselves. If it were possible to stop global warming via human oriented policies this might be true in theory. Because human influence on the climate is likely trivial, policies that try to subvert human behavior to prevent global warming are not likely to be successful. Once this is realized, the costs to economic growth and human welfare really stand out.

According to a researcher at Wesleyan University, stabilizing emissions at 1990 levels could reduce US per capital growth by 5% per year. ( an entry on the importance of economic growth soon to follow). The infrastructure problems that currently are causing high gas prices would only be exasperated by piling on more regulations that can only restrict supply and exasperate the problem. While research and development of alternative energy sources may be a better alternative, technology development and adoption is made possible in conjunction with investment and economic growth. Policies that impede this in the name of preventing global warming will certainly minimize private sector incentives in this area despite any funding from government.

The best solution for dealing with climate change is to develop resilient economies that are able to invest in the technology necessary to adapt to ever chaining resource constraints.

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