The Economics of Global Warming: Why We Are All Doomed

Global warming is a pretty big deal. Most people admit that it is real, but not many people do much about it. Some people are just lazy, but some may have a good reason (although some will use a good reason because they’re lazy). One of those reasons may be because of the affect of changing to more eco-friendly energy sources will have on the economy. The oil and coal industries are huge. They manage to produce a lot of money. If humans were to change to alternative energy sources, these industries would fail, ruin our economy, and make many people jobless.

However, when going through my RSS feed, I found an article about how global warming is already affecting the economy. In the article Fiona Harvey, an environmental corresponded, wrote :

Major economies will also take a hit, as extremes of weather and the associated damage – droughts, floods and more severe storms – could wipe 2% of the GDP (for those of you who don’t know, this stands for gross domestic product) of the US by 2030, while similar effects could cost China $1.2 trillion by the same date.”

Harvey also got an interview with Sheikh Hasina, prime minister of Bangladesh, who explained how global warming was affecting his country’s economy:

“A 1C rise in temperature [temperatures have already risen by 0.7C globally since the end of the 19th century] is associated with 10% productivity loss in farming. For us, it means losing about 4m tonnes of food grain, amounting to about $2.5 billion. That is about 2% of our GDP. Adding up the damages to property and other losses, we are faced with a total loss of about 3-4% of GDP. Without these losses, we could have easily secured much higher growth.”

What is explained in the article is that the huge amounts of heat and natural disasters caused by global warming cause repairs and loss of certain products to force countries around the world to spend huge amounts of money, so global warming is already forcing our economy to start diving.

Essentially, humans are now stuck in a predicament when it comes to the economy. If we continue to do nothing about global warming because of how the change will affect our economy, our economy will take a dive anyways because of disasters mostly caused by global warming. Farmers will also lose out because the heat will be too unbearable for their crops. But, if we do decide to do something about global warming, then many major companies will fall, and many will go jobless, and the economy will get even worse.

Imagine that you are inside of a room. There are two doors, both of which lead to the same place but the paths they go on are different. So I leave you with this question: What if there was a third door? And if so, which path would it go along?


5 responses to “The Economics of Global Warming: Why We Are All Doomed”

  1. isabellat0017 says :

    Ben I like your post but I think you could have added how if we do something about global warming then the economy would improve. For example if we started using sustainable energy then there would be more manufacturing jobs to create the solar panels and the wind turbines plus all the jobs needed to run them

    • benb0017 says :

      @isabellat0017: I have thought about the fact that eco-friendly energy would create more jobs. However, there are already pretty large sustainable energy companies. These companies are dwarfed by the non eco-friendly companies. To add to that, there are already plenty of people out of jobs. I suspect that any jobs would quickly be taken up by those already jobless. Along with those points, there is the fact that oil companies are some of the largest employers. They need a lot of people. And by the time the eco-friendly companies get large enough to need all of those employees, the economy will have gotten pretty bad. But thank you for your feedback.

  2. faizanb0017 says :

    I have to say I really enjoyed reading your post. However I would like to ask you one thing about a quote you included. In the quote from the Prime Minister of Bangladesh he mentions that his country lost 2% of their GDP because his country lost 4m tonnes of food grain. However, you have to remember that Bangladesh is included in the world’s top 50 poorest nations. It is agriculturally based with 45% of the population working in agriculture. So while the effects of global warming on Bangladesh might be huge, you must take into context the economy of Bangladesh and the economy of a developed nation like the U.S.A. or Canada. In the U.S.A 0.7% of the population works in the agriculture industry. Therefore, using logic, we can conclude that the effects of global warming on the US economy will be much less drastic than the effects of global warming on Bangladesh.

    Just a thought,


    • benb0017 says :

      @faizanb0017: True, but I am not trying to talk just about USA. Global warming is a global problem. As are failing economies. Thank you for expanding my knowledge though, and pointing out a possible flaw; imperfection can always turn into perfection, as long as it has a push which I believe you are helping to provide. So thank you.

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