Quotes from "Smart Solutions to Climate Change"
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Some remarkable quotes from the book
"Smart Solutions to Climate Change. Comparing costs and benefits", edited by Bjørn Lomborg 2010.

The book contains contributions from a total of 29 experts plus evaluations by five prominent economists. Introduction and Conclusion is written by Bjørn Lomborg.
A survey of the chapters may be found here.


Bjørn Lomborg (Introduction):
p. 1: "The risks of unchecked global warming are now widely acknowledged . . . "
p. 2: "Climate change is undoubtedly one of the chief concerns facing the world today."

Bjørn Lomborg (Conclusion)
p. 395: "Reading the research in this volume - written by some of the top climate economists working in this field today - it is easier to understand why a single-minded focus on drastic carbon emission reductions has failed to work. . . .the Expert Panel has found that drastic carbon cuts would be the poorest way to respond to global warming."

Bickel & Lane (
chapter on climate engineering):
p. 25-26: "Hypothetically, as suggested by the Nordhaus analysis of the Gore and Stern proposals, the global costs of meeting such demands might run into trillions of dollars. In reality, important economies remain largely beyond the influence of environmental advocacy groups, a fact that is likely to limit the effects of the environmentalists´ demands. One possible result may be to ensure that nations with relatively weak environmental lobbies will take the lead in researching and deploying SRM [Solar Radiation Management]. That prospect may, in turn, curtail the green advocacy groups´ influence on policy, even in countries where they enjoyy higher levels of support."

Richard Tol (chapter on carbon taxation):
p. 95: "One may similarly argue that the discount rate used here is too high. That said, a cursory look at aid and trade policies do not suggest great care for the welfare of people in faraway lands; and pension policies suggest that the future is not a high priority."

Roberto Roson (perspective paper on carbon taxation):
p. 111: ". . . in which sense is a carbon tax "a cost"? From basic public and welfare economics we know that any tax generates revenue and revenue should be accounted for in total welfare . . . "

Bent Sohngen (chapter on forestry):
p. 122: "In the case of the 2° limiting scenario, carbon prices fall by more than 50% when forestry is included in the global control strategy. A reduction in carbon prices by such a large amount would have enormous benefits for society . . . ."

Baron, Montgomery & Tuladhar (chapter on black carbon):
p. 143-144: "The uncertainty about these effects is profound, with no objective basis for the assignment of probabilities. Thus calculation of expected benefits is not a scientific possibility and any estimates of such benefits are highly speculative."

Kemfert & Schill (chapter on reduction of methane emissions):
p. 187: " . . . substantial mitigation potentials can be realized at zero cost in several sectors  . . . "

David Anthoff (perspective paper on reduction of methane emissions):
p. 201: "I conclude from this that with a discount rate of 6%, climate change is simply not valued as an urgent problem in the first place."
p. 202: "These results confirm an earlier suspicion: the spending suggestion fo the Copenhagen Consensus itself is far away from an optimal response to climate change."
p. 203: "All experience from climate change economics suggests that the choice of discount rate and scheme is one of the most important ones a modeler can make."

Frank Jotzo (perspective paper on adaptation):
p. 290: "The Copenhagen Consensus exercise places heavy emphasis on BCRs [benefit-cost-ratios]. These ratios come about as a result of highly contestable assumptions  . . . Consequently, the estimated BCRs are highly unreliable as a guide for policy."

Galiana & Green (chapter on technological innovation):
p. 322: " . . . we have used the well-known DICE model developed by William Nordhaus. There are two reasons for using the DICE model . . . However, the initial damage function parameter values appear likely to underestimete climate damages."
p. 325: "In order to induce the required amount of technological change, the price of carbon would need to be set far above the social cost, for the return to basic innovation to become potentially profitable in the private sector."

David Popp (perspective paper on technology transfer):
P. 373, note 4: "Compared to a combined policy using both optimal carbon taxes and research & development subsidies, a policy using only the optimal research and development subsidy attains just 11% of the welfare gains of the combined policy. In contrast, a policy using only the carbon tax achieves 95% of the welfare gains of thecombined policy."

Finn E. Kydland (notes on personal ranking):
P. 390: "After the last set of solutions, we had a few minutes to finetune our rankings."