People might like to consider getting some copies of Climate Change: The Facts 2017 to donate one to the local library and another to lend to people who have not yet made up their mind about the issues. It is dedicated to the late Bob Carter who made an outstanding contribution including a paper in the previous Climate Change: The Facts in 2014. He was sacked by the Uni of North Queensland for rocking the boat.
This collection begins with the Peter Ridd paper that triggered his problems with the same university and it ends with a polemic against alarmism from the pen of Clive James. He has been deep into terminal illness for some years although he was still producing at the start of this year.
In between are many other excellent contributions including Bjorn Lomborg “The Impact and Cost of the 2015 Paris Climate Summit with a Focus on US Policies”. The bottom line:
Adopting all promises from 2016-2030 will reduce the temperature in 2010 by 0.05%C…Optimally implemented the foregone economic output is estimated at US$924 billion per year by 2030. What’s more that cost will double to almost US$2 trillion per year if the policies are inefficiently implemented.
The most powerful case against the war on CO2 is to accept some of the premises of the alarmists and show that even by their own standards the emission control policies make no sense in the light of cost/benefit analysis. Bjorn Lomborg can be described as a “lukewarm alarmist” because he considers that warming will cause non-catastrophic problems in the somewhat distant future. Still his cost/benefit analysis points the need to adjust to the change rather than persisting with the current (failing) efforts to achieve a “carbon constrained” future.
If Lomborg’s analysis achieves any significant traction in the policy debate then obviously the proponents of “climate caper” and its many beneficiaries will have a lot of awkward questions to answer. That threat was defused in Australia when the staff and students in several universities blocked a $20 M government offer to set up a Lomborg-style cost/benefit program.
His chapter contains a fascinating analysis of the credibility of the commitments made by nations like China. What can we make of an undertaking to peak emissions in 2030 in view of the difficulty of monitoring? He noted that Chinese statistics are “notoriously opaque” (how surprising) and it seems that they have been burning almost 20% more coal per annum in recent years than we previously thought.
The lowest cost of their promise would be in the order of 2% of GDP and he suggested that it strains credibility to expect China to do so much self-harm. “It is worth noting in passing that in its commitment China also promises to be ‘democratic’ by 2050.” (2015 misprint corrected).
Getting back to the world picture, on the topic of efficient vs inefficient strategies Lomborg calculated that the best (efficient) strategies would cost the world in the order of a trillion per annum by 2030 compared with twice the cost for inefficient strategies. The EU could have switched to gas and improved efficiency for a GDP loss of 0.7% but like most countries to date they picked less efficient emission-reduction measures, namely solar subsidies and biofuels to cost 1.3% of GDP. Germany got into pumped hydro as well but they are getting out because it needs a shipload of spare power some time during the day to do it.