20 Dec '11, 9pm

Markets and climate change: A case of cognitive dissonance via @grist

Markets and climate change: A case of cognitive dissonance via @grist

Earlier this month, Nicholas Stern -- respected U.K. economist and author of the famed Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change -- cast a spotlight on what he calls a "profound contradiction at the heart of climate change policy ." On one side, the world's governments have pledged to hold temperature rise to 2 degrees C (3.6 degrees F). To have even a 50/50 shot at meeting that target, humanity has a "carbon budget" of about 1,400 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide between now and 2050. The more we exceed that budget, the more the 2 degrees target slips out of reach. Here's the thing, though: The world's proven fossil fuel reserves, if burned, would create about 2.8 trillion tonnes of CO2, double that carbon budget. If countries are serious about 2 degrees, they must be planning to leave a lot of fossil fuels in the ground. Right? On the other side, however, the world...

Full article: http://www.grist.org/climate-policy/2011-12-20-markets-an...

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