Kyoto Cost Benefit

This is the only cost benefit analysis I've seen to date on Kyoto. If anyone else has different numbers I'd love to see them. I seriously doubt we'll get anything other than agitprop from the Boxer committee.

The sloppy logic of the Kyoto advocates is surprising. The protocol would demand the biggest international financial commitment in history, yet it rests on an elementary fallacy: it compares the total costs of potential damage with the marginal costs of slightly ameliorating the problem. Even if every industrial country met the Kyoto goals of reducing carbon emissions 30 percent by 2010, the impact would be tiny. By 2100 that would have postponed global warming by a mere six years. The guy in Bangladesh driven from his home by rising sea levels would have to move in 2106, instead of 2100.

This makes little sense. The best estimates of the cost of implementing Kyoto run between $150 billion and $350 billion a year. The best estimates of the damage from global warming reach about $500 billion annually in 2100. Proponents argue that paying $150 billion to avoid $500 billion in damages is a good deal. But that's not what's on offer. We still have to pay the $500 billion, only six years later. So the real offer is: we pay $150 billion each year for 100 years to postpone payment of $500 billion annually, starting in 2100. All economic models show this to be, as the Copenhagen Consensus put it, a "bad" deal.

No comments: