Wednesday, February 18, 2009

What if Oregonians decline to address climate change?

EurekAlert: If nothing is done to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, Oregon will face some $3.3 billion in annual costs, which could translate to an individual tab of about 4 percent of annual household income by 2020, according to a report produced for the University of Oregon's Climate Leadership Initiative's Program on Climate Economics by ECONorthwest.

The UO's Program on Climate Economics is guided by a steering committee of 19 academic and private economists from Oregon and other western states. Committee members also produce some of the program's research. Ernie Niemi, lead author of the report, is a principal with ECONorthwest, a fellow with the UO's Climate Leadership Initiative (CLI) and a member of the steering committee. ECONorthwest was contracted to produce the assessment.

"Our research found that a failure to reduce greenhouse gas emissions would produce significant and continually rising costs for Oregon households and businesses," said Bob Doppelt, director of the Climate Leadership Initiative, who managed the report. "There will be no business-as-usual economy in Oregon under a business-as-usual approach to climate change." "The $3.3 billion price tag for 2020 is a purposeful understatement," Niemi said. "The amount is based on 17 potential costs for which we had sufficient data to draw conclusions."

Total annual costs would more than triple by 2080 if insufficient action is taken to reduce emissions. Per-household costs are based on projected population growth and were computed to spell out the cost of inaction on a personal level, not as a recommendation of cost-sharing.

…."It's sobering that these significant costs reflect just 'average' conditions projected under business-as-usual carbon emissions," said Dave Ervin, a member of the steering committee for CLI's Program on Economics and professor of economics at Portland State University. "Given the evidence of earlier-than-expected melting in the Arctic and Antarctic regions and other issues, the risks of larger costs are real. That's why the insurance industry and a number of financial institutions are so concerned."….

Treeway by Crater Lake, Oregon, shot by Herr stahlhoefer, who has generously released the image into the public domain

1 comment:

Túrelio said...

being a volunteer on Wikimedia-Commons I want to bring to your attention that the image "Treeway by Crater Lake, Oregon, USA.jpg" used in this article, is not free, but fully copyrighted by Richard Ryer, see .
The user, who had uploaded it to Commons, had erroneously claimed a copyright he actually didn't have. We discovered this only recently. The image has already been deleted from Commons. I recommend you to do the same (or to relicense it from the author). Sorry for the inconvenience.