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Margot McConnell

In the World Bank’s article about climate change, the article emphasizes that climate change is more than just the simple heating of the earth; there are so many things that are negatively impacted by an increase in temperature on earth. Climate change creates a huge negative externality. One of the things that stood out to me the most after what we have talked about in class all semester is the impacts that it has on the spread of disease and agriculture and how those two things can have a negative impact on human capital. Malaria, for example, as we read in another article for class, is increasing and spreading to more parts of the earth as a result of climate change. The article even mentions that there is an increased risk of diarrheal disease and even just thermal discomfort, which can have negative impacts especially on those who have heavy labor jobs outdoors. Additionally, climate change can increase the chance of floods, droughts, landslides, and other disasters to nature which can have an impact on crops and farming in general. Not only does this have an impact on the availability of certain crops and an overall decrease in yield, but it also impacts the incomes and lives of farmers. As we have discussed in class, it is important to focus on the agricultural sector because many of the poor in the world are farmers and their income is dependent upon crop yields. Think about the amount of people that are negatively impacted if certain areas of the world are now experiencing these extreme climate changes that are hindering the production of certain crops.
Going off of this, another important source of food for many and also a source of income for many countries especially in the Caribbean is fish. The increase in climate temperatures is leading to an increase in ocean acidification. Moreover, coral bleaching is an important result of climate change. Coral reefs are home to many creatures within the ocean, so coral bleaching negatively impacts them, which can have a greater impact on fishery catches and an overall migration of fish to cooler areas. One thing that certainly stuck out to me was that local food security in the Caribbean and Latin American countries is greatly threatened by climate change due to the negative impacts it has on the ocean and coral reefs as I just mentioned because of the decrease in fishery potential.
While reading this article, I was reminded of the discussions we had in the Economics of Sustainable Development Spring Term course. I was reminded of the large impact that fossil fuels and carbon, in general, have on almost everything discussed in this article in terms of climate change. Switching to more sustainable forms of energy is the biggest but maybe the most necessary step towards addressing this global climate crisis. I was reminded of an article I had read while in the Economics of Sustainable Development Spring Term course. It was a study done by people at Stanford that basically proved how the United States can switch to completely renewable sources of energy. Jacobson and his team created a plan for all 50 states to move to more renewable forms of energy by 2050. There would have to be initial funding and investment into these new sources of energy; however, in the long-run, the returns would be millions and maybe even billions of dollars saved in addition to all of the other positive spillover benefits to the environment, human capital, and so on. Switching to these renewable energy forms would decrease air pollution and slow global warming, which are two major contributors to many of the problems that are addressed in the World Bank’s article. Here is a brief summary of the plan proposed by Jacobson and his team: https://news.stanford.edu/news/2014/february/fifty-states-renewables-022414.html
Many of these ideas are brought up by top research institutions that are leading the way towards dealing with the climate change crisis; however, the real question is whether or not leaders will act to make a difference. For example, Trump withdrew from the Paris Climate Agreement. Along with many of the other statements and decisions he has made, it is hard to see the United States moving towards more sustainable sources of energy especially in combating the climate crisis given some of the current leaders even though it is clear that it is possible to do and has many long-run benefits.

Alec Horne

In the article, Turn Down the Heat Confronting the New Climate Normal, the impacts of rising global temperatures are discussed. As we can see, these impacts have drastic changes in the future of the world. I think the most interesting takeaway from the article is how all the impacts created are from developed countries that get the smallest punishment. Countries that have had very little impact on the rising global temperatures get the worst of the change at hand. Although all of the negative effects are substantial, I want to discuss the impact that rising temperatures have on the oceans and more specifically coral reefs.

Rising global temperatures have had negative impacts on the number of coral reefs there are on the planet. A change as small as 2 degrees has devasting effects on coral reefs. It is estimated that 75% of coral reefs have already undergone heat stress wiping out 30% of the world’s coral reefs already (WWF). Once coral reefs die it is nearly impossible for them to come back. We know that coral reefs are a breeding ground for many aquatic species and act a feeding ground for larger predators. As the ecosystems disappear so do the larger marine animals which humans use as a source of food. Aside from destroying the food source which comes from coral reefs, coral bleaching also heavily contributes to rising sea tides. Coral reefs act as natural barriers that protect coasts from the forces of waves and storms. Without the reefs, we have to rely on man-made barriers along the coast. Not only are the man-made barriers expensive to build, they are less effective and contribute to greater environmental damage. Lastly, coral reefs are huge for tourism in the billions of dollars they help to generate each year. Destruction of them decreases the amount of tourism to a developing country which relies so heavily on tourism as a source of income for their economy.

The only way to combat the problem is to stop climate change. Even so, I see it as almost impossible to stop the total destruction of coral reefs given that 75% have already undergone heat-related stress in today’s day and age. As a result, developing countries in island nations will face a greater amount of poverty and food insecurity due to the impact of developed countries with the destruction of coral reefs and rising sea levels.


In John Quiggin's article, "The world is enough" he states a fairly optimistic view on our current capabilities in regards to ending poverty while protecting the global environment. He has some very good arguments for why these goals are currently feasible, such as increased fuel efficiency of vehicles, future buildings being more efficient, and the future technology grids of developing countries being able to leap frog into cutting edge energy solutions without the dependency on fossil fuels. Overall, this article does bring a lot of hope on the climate change issue since it does establish that it is possible to meet our goals rather than portray the devastating path the world is currently headed. Some of its suggestions are already gaining traction, such as electric cars. In fact, Tesla was the 3rd most bought car in California this quarter.

However, I’m not entirely sure about how true his claims are on Internet shopping reducing a large number of individual shopping trips to just one being an effective way to reduce emissions. While this is just anecdotal evidence, in my experience, when people go grocery shopping they try their best to plan it out so that they won’t have to go shopping again for the rest of the week. I think this extends to other facets of shopping, when the onus is on the individual, since these tasks use time that is valued by the individual. Thus, individuals try to get as many items as possible on these trips. However, with the rise of Amazon 1 day shipping and one click purchase, consumers are not incentivized to just go to the store once a week, because there is no time cost of ordering an item and having it shipped to their door the next day. Thus, it is more likely for consumers to deaggregate their shopping carts and actually increase trips (and therefore emissions) for the shipping company to deliver there impulse purchases. Furthermore, the whole internet shipping delivery system (while it does try to optimize its routes) cannot come close to reducing its emissions to the amount it would take for someone to just drive 5 miles to their nearest Walmart. Often, products you order online will be shipped in from out of state, and will use heavy polluting methods like planes.

However, if the world could focus on providing energy to developing countries through clean methods and use these countries as a possible testing ground for clean energy technology to be adopted at home that would be instrumental in reducing poverty, while doing so sustainably.

In the Turn Down the Heat report, looks at the impact of increasing global temperatures on food and energy systems, water resources, and ecosystems. The paper focused on the impacts of climate change on Latin America, the Middle East and North Africa, Europe and Central Asia. Some common impacts are increased droughts in certain areas that undermine crop stability and can increase food prices which would hurt the poor the most, increased extreme weather and its associated damages to infrastructure and crops, and the damage associated with higher sea levels.

While the first article showed that it is possible for us to reach our goals, this paper shows us why we really need to meet them. With climate change impacting nearly every place in the world negatively and hurting the poor, children, and elderly the most, there is a great need to implement more policies to help protect the planet! However, the current administration seems dead set on reverting to old forms of energy like coal that are not only hazardous to health, but also not even that helpful to the economy. Rather than complain about change and grab to inefficient and damaging ways of the past, we should incentivize innovation in green forms of energy production and efficiency to replace these antiquated forms of production. While they may be more expensive initially, their social costs would make that investment a lot more attractive.

This brings me to another reason why there is hope in the future: the next generation is a lot more motivated to reduce climate change. While past generations really dropped the ball on climate change and even turned it into a political issue, from what I can see, there seems to be a general understanding among my generation that climate change is an important issue that needs to be addressed. As the population demographics shift, there will be more attention placed on this issue and hopefully it will become bipartisan. When that happens, there will be great reason to rejoice.


In “We Can End World Poverty Without Destroying the Planet,” John Quiggin argued that what stops the world from alleviating poverty in a sustainable manner is not technological obstacles, but ideological ones. Quiggin advocated for everyone to stop chasing after profit and consumer goods and shift to enjoying more leisure. Quiggin’s article got me thinking to what extent is government intervention ethical.

Quiggin interestingly focused on how ideology undermines our ability to be sustainable and help the poor.

Although it is technologically possible to cut energy consumption, people’s associating car with liberation makes giving up travelling by car hard. While Quiggin suggested in his article that young people already have less obsession with travelling by cars, I am reminded of a way to accelerate the shift in ideology--government promotion. The Chinese government has started advocating for travelling by mass transportation, bikes or feet with public-service ads and government-sponsored marathon races. To further encourage people to choose mass transportation and bicycles over driving, the government also set up cheap rental bike stations outside of metro stations. Our bike tracks connect the whole city. To reduce greenhouse gas emission for “must-have” cars, my city’s government changed all public buses and taxis to electric ones. My government offered tax cut for electric car, and, unlike for diesel cars, it does not initiate license plate issuance lotteries for electric cars. Needless to say, such policies largely motivated people in my city to choose public transportation and bicycles over cars. My city has much less traffic than other major cities in China, and the air quality is better.

Similarly, China has the potential of shifting citizens’ diet to chicken and pork in response to the high gas-emission rate of cattle and sheep production. Recently, Chinese people see an increase in publication of chicken’s nutritional and health values. People suspect such is the government’s response to a drastic increase in pork price, that the government tries to reduce the price of pork by shifting the demand for pork to the left. Such a method can be used by China to shift Chinese people’s diet away from beef and lamb, which I believe would yield satisfactory results.

Finally, Quiggin suggested that redistributing a small amount of the rich’s wealth to the poorest can help lift the poorest from hunger. Whether such method would actually do more good than harm or not, authoritarian countries like China certainly can, and have accomplished wealth distribution.

As you can see, authoritarian regimes can be more effective in reaching social optimal, obtaining the positive externalities, than democratic ones. The question, however, is whether it is ethical for them to do so. Should the government act paternalistically and execute what it thinks will be good for its citizens? Does the government have the obligation to gain its citizens’ consent before it does something that most rational people worldwide would agree is beneficial? Is dictatorship justifiable if all the dictator ever do is for the good of society? For me personally, the maintenance of a democratic system is not trading off for some short-term benefits a dictator can bring. While this dictator may be committed to bettering humankind, their heir may not; the dictator themselves can change as well. Dictatorships are too uncertain to entrust the future with. At the same time, democracies should learn the trick of government intervention from authoritarian regimes since it is indeed far more effective than waiting for profit-seeking individuals to consent to giving up some of their income for the seemingly distant need to help the poor or protect the environment.

Alice Chen

I’ve always seen climate change as an important issue, but I never knew the importance of it from a development standpoint. There were several topics in this reading that stuck out to me that I had never considered before such as tourism and agriculture & social vulnerability to climate change.

I found the impact on tourism quite interesting as they mentioned that in Egypt, ocean acidification and ocean warming threatens coral reefs and places the tourism industry under pressure. The tourism industry is an important source of income for the country, and this can place further development in Egypt under stress as they already rank 132/151 in the world for GDP per capita. Reading this reminded me of the Maldives, a country suffering so heavily from sea levels rising that they have resorted to building artificial islands. However, the Maldives is also very reliant on tourism and with the bleaching of coral reefs and sea levels rising so high that they damage the airport, the Maldives would face a significant loss for their GDP based on the tourism sector.

Agriculture and imports also get significantly impacted, and they especially impact people who rely on the environment/geography for work. High heat impact not only crops, but also farmers who work outdoors. Dry regions tend to get drier and wet regions tend to get wetter, which can further impact crop growth. This can further widen economic inequality and send people into a poverty trap. I was reminded of rainfall insurance that we read about a few weeks ago, but even with rainfall insurance, this cannot aid people against climate change. Additionally, if people can no longer live in these areas, they would have to permanently migrate elsewhere, which can place significant toll on established cities not ready for the influx of migrants. Those in minority groups, who already have less of a voice, will not have their needs attended to either. Their children may be malnourished and as we know without proper healthcare, people are unable to rise from poverty.

So what can we do about climate change? While many nations have pledged to combat climate change, it doesn’t seem like the entire world has taken it as a serious issue yet—or just aren’t doing enough. From living in Shanghai, it was great to see the government slowly implementing policies to reduce pollution, but it still hasn’t been reduced enough to combat climate change in its entirety. So should we have stricter policies? Should we value combatting climate change over a countries own economic development?

Maisie Strawn

Focusing on any one effect of climate change can be overwhelming. Take for instance the World Bank’s assertion in this report that, “projections of coral bleaching indicate that preserving more than 10 percent of these unique ecosystems calls for limiting global warming to 1.5°C.” From my understanding, limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius is practically impossible at this point, and it is difficult to even begin to understand how significant it is to lose over 90% of our coral reefs. The effects of that loss alone are likely to be felt globally and could be catastrophic for island nations particularly. Of course, loss of coral reefs is just one symptom among many related to climate change. There is also unprecedented heat, drought, extreme weather events, sea-level rise, and changing precipitation trends among others with which to contend. As was made clear in this report, these climate change effects have large implications for development and poverty reduction. This connection is not surprising given the number of issues that we discussed in this class that were brought up in this report: agricultural systems and crop yield, human health, labor productivity, global trade, and infrastructure. Climate change seems to affect every single one of the aspects of economic development that we have touched on in this class. I found some of the data on crop yields to be particularly alarming. In this report the World Bank estimates that at 1.5-2 degrees Celsius, crop yields in Jordan, Egypt, and Libya may decrease by up to 30 percent, 50 percent in Macedonia for maize, wheat, vegetables and grapes, 30-70 percent in Brazil for soybean. From what we have discussed in class, the implications of these yield declines could be potentially devastating. So many developing economies are reliant on agriculture. Agricultural goods are often their primary exports and the largest sector of the economy. When agriculture is disrupted and there are times of hardship, we have learned that it is women who will suffer disproportionately. Scarcity can lead to unrest and even violence. There are similar implications for nearly every effect of climate change from sea-level rise to extreme weather. Thus, the World Bank’s assertion that “action is urgently needed on climate change” could probably be phrased even more strongly. I think that it will be particularly important to examine our institutions in light of climate change and explore how policy may be developed to combat the unequal distribution of the effects of climate change and to protect and empower the most marginalized. Otherwise, it seems, climate change will further exacerbate global inequality, which also has implications for development. Frustratingly, the countries who likely will be most affected by climate change are probably some of the smallest contributors to it, and they lack the power to force action from larger contributors like the U.S.


John Quiggin’s article, “This world is enough,” and the World Bank’s climate report, “Turn Down the Heat,” both make alarming observations and provide innovative solutions in regard to the climate problem. After reading both pieces, it is more clear than ever that research shows that conditions of poverty and environmental well-being are inextricably linked. The World Bank report states that the consequences of global warming as far as development goes would include declines in crop yields, diminishing water resources, the spread of diseases, and sea levels rising, which will lead toward more damaging floods and hurricanes among coastal populations. Ultimately, it seems like the consequences of climate change will end up making the already difficult task of development even more difficult.

We discussed an example of how pursuing environmentally harmful practices not only hurts the environment, but also has massive negative impacts on the economy, in class on Tuesday concerning New Delhi’s air pollution problem. On certain days, New Delhi’s air quality reached such dangerous levels that schools and a large amount of economic activity has to be shut down, and the government ends up incurring a significant cost by issuing out face masks to its people to protect them from breathing in the polluted air. Not to mention, the actual health cost incurred over time from breathing in the polluted air add up overtime.

Quiggin’s article provides an interesting contrast to some of the ideas mentioned in Solow’s speech that we read for Tuesday’s class. Solow mentions a trade-off between taking actions that will help future generations and taking actions to help the poor in today’s world immediately. However, Quiggin believes that we can avoid having to face a trade-off primarily through the advancement of technology. Quiggin sheds light on just how feasible sustainability can actually be. The fact that we have the technology to transition aspects of our society such as driving and energy uses toward more sustainable manners is half of the battle. The other half, Quiggin mentions, deals with our beliefs, values, and social institutions. Reading this article makes me wonder why there is such controversy surrounding climate change. If there is an option that allows everyone to benefit in the long run, then why would we not pursue it?

Kenza Amine Benabdallah

This paper proves that the changes in the climate are impacting communities in many different ways. I definitely was not aware of the extent of these impacts. The paper argues that climate change is damaging many communities’ crops, food access, water access, and energy security. Although media has been talking about melting glaciers, the risks of flooding, and the rising sea levels. I think that they failed in talking about what communities will be affected the most and how. I was not aware at all that rising sea levels pose a particular threat in the Middle East and North Africa, even though that’s where I am from.

I wish the paper focused more on current climate displacement, specifically in some Islands in the Pacific that are sinking and risk to disappear in the next decades, such as the Marshall Islands, the Fiji Islands, or the Kiribati Island. One of my really close friends is from the Marshall Islands and she would always talk to me about how scared she is of losing her country and how hard it is for her community ( a poor community) to invest most of their resources in protecting their island from sinking. The Guardian has very interesting articles about these Islands.

What surprised me the most and also scared me was reading about how climate change will have such a large impact on Morocco. I am pretty sure that most people in Morocco aren’t even aware of any of these threats. However, I am proud to say that Morocco, being a very poor country, has been investing a lot in renewable energies and is being very climate-conscious. That proves one of the points made by the paper, the most vulnerable communities to climate change are developing countries.

Lucas Flood

While the World Bank’s Report, “Turn Down the Heat,” was certainly interesting and thought-provoking, I was left without an answer to how we can economically reduce the impact of climate change on the world. On the other hand, John Quiggin’s work, “This World is Enough,” provided policy proposals to address the inherent questions posed by the World Bank’s work. Quiggin contends energy sector reforms represent the best opportunities for cutting carbon emissions. He argues a combination of cultural changes, increasing the use of renewable energy sources, and utilizing technological advancements could lower emissions by as much as 90%. While Quiggin’s goal of lowering carbon emissions by 80-90% is an excellent cause (and would resolve many of the issues addressed by the World Bank’s report), I am not convinced that such a policy would be as simple as Quiggin argues.
I agree that wind and solar power are the future of energy and should be pursued as the replacement for fossil fuels, but I disagree with Quiggin’s assumption about the ease of implementation. According to Quiggin, it would be necessary to build massive public transportation infrastructure to replace the current fossil fuel-based economic system. This is certainly a worthy cause, but Quiggin never addresses the cost behind implementing the technology necessary to replace cars in the United States; he only says that there is “no technological reason why [mass transit] could not be extended to a much larger portion of the population.”
Additionally, I found Quiggin’s argument for the feasibility of electric cars to be persuasive, but hard to implement in the short-term without significant and aggressive government regulation. The problem is that Quiggin’s argument for the 80-90% drop in emissions costs seems to only be possible through a combination of implementing mass transit (at substantial cost to the U.S. government) or mandating the use of electric cars (at substantial cost to the U.S. consumer). I agree with the foundation of Quiggin’s argument, but I disagree with the methods he seeks to utilize to achieve his goal.
Finally, I found Quiggin’s indictment of political opposition to be disingenuous, particularly when he blames “rightwing culture warriors” for the lack of action on climate change. Although some individuals do not accept the existence of climate change, it is important to remember that climate science is not nearly as polarizing as is often thought. Even in the world of public policy, influential conservative and libertarian think tanks, such as the Heritage Foundation and the Cato Institute, agree with the scientific consensus about the existence of climate change. After all, the first article on Heritage’s “Environment” page states: “Climate change is happening and humn activity undoubtedly plays a role”. Under the page “Global Warming,” Cato says: “Global warming is indeed real, and human activity has been a contributor since 1975.” Both organizations clearly agree with Quiggin’s argument about human involvement in climate change, but simply disagree with his implementation strategy. In my opinion, the real challenge to passing policies to address climate change is found in the lack of people from across the political spectrum getting together to discuss issues in a constructive manner. As the World Bank report demonstrates, it is vital to find a solution to climate change in the near future. However, in order to find such as solution, it is important to search for policies designed to balance implementation costs with a fiscally responsible approach.

William Chapman

The world presented in the World Bank report was a depressing one to read about but was no different than what many news articles and scientists have been saying for years. Because the effects of climate change are not immediate and not as acutely felt in rich countries like the US, many people either deny climate change is an issue or simply do not understand the massive ramifications it will have on human existence. From a moral standpoint, climate change is extremely troubling as well. The people that will likely be most affected are not the same ones who are causing the issue in the first place. The vast majority of carbon emissions come out of the developed world as well as China and India. This report shows that many of the people who will take the brunt of the impacts are in poorer developing countries. A farmer in Ghana is not exactly releasing a lot of greenhouse gasses. I recently found a website that lets you put in your consumption, traveling and living arrangements and it estimates the number of Earths it would take in order to support your lifestyle if everyone on earth lived the same way. For example, the site estimates that it would take over six earths to support my lifestyle. This just shows again how unequal the situation is globally. Not only is it unequal for people living right now but for people who have not been born yet. There are people who will be born 100 years from now who will have had no part in causing climate change but will have to deal with the results.

Anne Riter

The article from the World Bank was disheartening to say the least. It painted a grave picture of the direction our world is going in due to the emissions of greenhouse gasses and climate change. I immediately thought that if we don't change our ways, we're going to do irreparable harm to our world, but sadly, many people will never come to this conclusion.
I had initially done some research on the effects of climate change, but I wasn't aware that it impacted the world in so many different ways, from severely decreasing crop yields, diseases moving around more rapidly, and extreme weather patterns like hurricanes or wildfires. Also, the fact that it affected every part of the world in similar ways means that this issue is not just localized. It is up to every country to implement legislation that will protect their environment while decreasing their carbon emissions. China and India produce the most of these gasses, but it's not just them who feel the effects.
The impact this has on development is severe as well. Countries that find it difficult to become developed due to a myriad of reasons will find those reasons compounded due to the environmental impact of climate change. Since poor people don't have insurance, when a natural disaster occurs or even less rainfall or more rainfall ruins their crops, they really feel the effect. It's not even the poor people of developing nations that are emitting these greenhouse gasses, yet they bear the brunt of the consequences.
Much like the article we read for class on Tuesday, it's not necessarily up to us to leave the world as we found it. That being said, it is up to us to leave future generations something to work with. At the rate we're going, we will completely destroy the environment and I think we all have an obligation, as citizens of a developed nation who have the resources available, to do everything in our power to prevent the obliteration of our world.

Julia Moody

"The World is Enough," by John Quiggin, is about how we can reduce poverty while simultaneously preventing further environmental harm. Quiggin believes that the question should not be if we can complete these two goals at the same time, but rather if we will. He argues that this should be possible through reducing fossil fuels, technological advancement, slowing population growth, and using more sustainable food systems. He admits that these changes may take a long time to implement and may be expensive and that there may be limitations on how much the poor are benefitted. I liked that Quiggin offered many counter-arguments to his main points. For example, he talks about how moving to more sustainable food systems could increase food production and potentially improve the well being of many impoverished people all over the world. He also brings up the point that increased food production does not always directly increase the food distributed to people living in poverty. A lot of food may go to middle-income countries, who are more capable of paying for it.

I appreciated that Quiggin focused on how his proposed infrastructure changes and the chaining environment specifically affect the poor. It reminded me of the paper "The Economic and Social Burden of Malaria,” by Jeffrey Sachs and Pia Malaney, which talked about the impact of the ever-warming climate on low income countries. Countries in Africa that lack simple malaria-prevention technology will be affected exponentially more by global warming because the increase in global temperatures and rainfall also increase the prevalence of mosquito-borne diseases, such as malaria. Middle and high income countries may not have to worry about this problem because they either do not have tropical climates or can afford implementing malaria-prevention techniques. I liked how both of these papers had sections focusing specifically on how people living in poverty are impacted by technological and environmental changes.


The paper prepared for the World Bank by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and Climate Analytics, “Turn Down the Heat: Confronting the New Climate Normal,” addresses the severe implications of global warming on the environment and development. The paper focuses on how without action towards eliminating contributors to the problem such as greenhouse gas emissions and coral-reef bleaching, the world will face a 2°C increase in world temperature by mid-century, and a 4°C increase in world temperature by the end of the century. The consequences of this warming are endless, from negative impacts on food and energy systems, water resources, ecosystems, and overall increases in social vulnerability for those living in developing countries.

This paper really opened my eyes to the effects of climate change on developing countries. Already at a vulnerable state in regard to food security, substantial housing, and access to water, those living in developing countries cannot afford for the global temperature increase. I believe the dangers posed to these countries needs to be further emphasized when it comes to policy implications and funding towards slowing warming. Moreover, these risks demonstrate just how dependent humans and the earth are, something that is often forgotten by those who make decisions about resource allocation and industry.

Something I wanted to further look into from the paper was the bleaching of coral reefs. I was astounded by the magnitude of their decline. It’s almost unbelievable that rates of ocean acidification are the highest they’ve been in 300 million years and rates of sea level rise are the highest for 6,000 years. The effect on fisheries is also shocking as their numbers are expected to significantly decrease within the next 30 years. However, I had recently seen an advertisement for non-profit organization looking towards re-growing coral reefs throughout coastlines in the United States and around the world. I looked up current organizations that are working towards this issue and found the Coral Restoration Foundation (coralrestoration.org). This organization aims to grow and restore coral reefs to health in Florida and globally. Additionally, they have a mission to educate others on the importance of our oceans and further research how we can support them. They have already made quite an impact since 2007: planting over 100,000 endangered staghorn and elkhorn corals back into the Florida Reef Track. Not only have they successfully planted these endangered species, but ignited the growth of thriving new colonies.

My only concern from reading the paper is that further warming could be a detriment to the work put in by organizations such as the Coral Restoration Foundation. It seems that if we don’t control for the primary causes of ocean warming and acidification, then there is the risk of destroying these rebuilt coral reefs. With this being said I think it’s important to acknowledge that global institutions need to account for all primary causes of global warming, not just one or a few.

EC Myers

What an uplifting article!! Not really, but it actually is very motivational. I hope that anyone who stumbles upon this climate report sees how urgent it is to act now to reduce emissions to decrease impacts on our climate. Just yesterday in class we were observing how the more developed a group/country becomes, the greater their carbon emissions are. While I am definitely NOT saying that we should stop developing and stop trying to alleviate poverty, it does seem like a tricky balance. Promoting human development to end poverty will become more and more difficult the greater the climatic temperature increases, becoming nearly impossible to achieve at 4°C. But promoting human development, at least with common technologies today, will increase carbon emissions and therefore increase the temperature. The interaction between global climate change and human development is a clear example as to why investments in R&D are so critical. We need to have improved efficiencies in technology that will allow for human development to occur without greatly increasing carbon emissions.

In one of Professor Cooper's courses (my apologies but I cannot remember which one), we commonly discussed how to "fix" climate change by defining sustainability. Often we think of sustainability as preservation of resources for the next generation, but in a sense, sustainability can also be a preservation of resources for other populations on the planet today. Industrialized countries are greatly at fault for the state of our climate change, as their development was fueled by fossil fuels. They might argue that in order to mitigate climate change, developing countries should not be allowed to industrialize, as that will only make climate change worse. But is this fair? If developed countries were more sustainable with their resources when they were developing, in the sense that they were more equitable in leaving more for undeveloped countries to use, would we be having this debate? It certainly doesn't seem fair for developed nations to prevent developing nations from developing, as those in the developing countries will be hit with the effects of climate change the hardest.

Jumping topics a little bit here, this summer I worked with a research team of the Spanish government in Madrid called INIA (Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria). The best way I can describe the organization is like the US's equivalent of a USDA research institute. All of the lab groups I worked with (4 different groups) were essentially researching how the climate in Spain would adapt to climate change. I saw this most directly working with the teams that were measuring nitrogen concentration in soils, as well as with the team who was testing grains and what climates and soils they grew best in. While none of the "missions" of the teams explicitly mentioned climate change, from what I saw, the individuals on the team would say that their work was essentially showing that the climate of Madrid will evolve to become more like the climate of Sevilla (more arid and hot)in the coming decades thanks to climate change. Using some of the terminology in this article, I'm guessing that Sevilla's climate might even shift to unprecedented heat extremes if Madrid is shifting to be like Sevilla. It is nice to know that there are groups in industrialized nations researching how the effects of climate change will manifest itself in the coming years, but it is still alarming to me that the Spanish government's research institution strays from using the term "cambio climático"

Christopher Watt

Put simply, “Turn Down the Heat” is terribly frightening. It illustrates the drastic effects climate change is having across the globe and how those harms will persist and worsen as temperatures continue to rise with the increase in global CO2 emissions and other greenhouse gases. What I found particularly alarming about the report is the implication that many areas studied, such as coastal Africa, which are massive population centers, may be rendered fully unlivable with continued rise in temperatures. Rising sea levels and declining agricultural production will inhibit populations from both needed nutrients for survival and even land mass to reside upon. This displacement of populations will further crowd urban population centers and put higher strains on food security and labor market opportunities in these areas. Thinking back to some of our discussions earlier in the year with regards to the Lewis Two Sector model, the mass migration to cities will lead to increasing populations of urban poor. Moreover, current rural lands used for agriculture may become less and less fruitful, or even infertile as described in the report, leading to greater malnutrition and food insecurity in both rural and urban settings, as well as for nations that have relied on agricultural imports from these areas. This seems, to some extent, inevitable at the current pace we are—catastrophe.
One of the major issues that has become increasingly important to me that is described tangentially in the paper is distributional justice and climate change. In reading the report, I reflected on Sen’s “Development as Freedom,” considering the tragic changes to living conditions, agricultural outputs, and health that are often out of the control of those who experience them most. As noted in the report, those who experience the harshest effects of climate change often are living in developing areas; the burden of the industrialized world and its emissions is falling on those who have least means and least ability to focus on addressing its harms. This should be seen as a major unfreedom and further hinderance to their ability to develop. As we discussed at the end of class briefly on Tuesday, I believe developed nations causing these harms may even have some responsibility to address them. I would love to discuss ways in which they could do that if there is time in class on Thursday.
Lastly, the report, as a final reading in our class, caused me to think of spillover effects that weren’t described explicitly but that we may have discussed earlier in the course. A primary concern of mine is the incidence of malaria. Because of increasingly harsh weather episodes such as hurricanes and the increased incidence of El Niño’s, it seems that conditions may be more conducive to mosquito habitat and malaria in tropical regions, making these illnesses more difficult to address. Again, these areas are contributing very little to climate change but bearing much of the harm. This all goes to say that the world MUST ACT. These changes are irreversible. The short-term costs are worth the long-term benefits of cutting emissions and investing more in renewable energy sources. Without urgent action, the harms to those who have the least ability to address them will be catastrophic, altering entire communities, their ways of life, and their ability to survive.

Sofia G. Cuadra

This third report by the World Bank in its “Turn Down the Heat” series discussed the alarming reality of climate change and its detrimental impact on both current and future generations. Honestly, reading the report was highly depressing because it touched on numerous climate impacts that could very well occur in my own life time. The numerous negative impacts of climate change (weather extremes, rising sea levels, decreased water supplies, decreased food supplies, etc.) can all very well occur as a warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels is already “locked-in” by 2050 — only 30 years from today! If current policies continue and we don’t tackle climate change more aggressively, there is a 40% chance that warming will exceed 4 degrees Celsius by 2100. All the hard work that the international community has done to fight extreme poverty and sustain economic development will primarily be washed down the drain. The idea of this bleak future is utterly horrid.

However, at the same time as the report went in depth on specific regions, I couldn’t help but think of the difficulty in trying to convince leaders to prioritize fighting climate change. Often, many countries in these developing regions find themselves in the midst of security conflicts, whether manifested by wars or civil unrest. One could just point to Syria or Venezuela, for example. If the leadership of these countries are too focused on handling their internal conflicts, how can they tackle fighting climate change as well? I believe it is a responsibility that they honestly shouldn't have to bear, as they were not the major contributors to climate change. For this reason, much like we discussed in class on Tuesday, the responsibility to lead the fight against climate change falls extensively on developed countries with the security and means to do so.

As the report mentioned, these negative impacts of climate change, in of themselves, could further exacerbate developing countries' internal conflicts by adding another source of pressure to society. People grow angry, upset, and often violent when basic needs are not met. War and civil unrest are the reality in many countries today, and if policies don't change, climate change will only exacerbate these pre-existing threats to development well into the future.

Caroline Florence

John Quiggan’s “The World is Enough” reminded me of why I decided to be an Economics and Environmental Studies double major. I am passionate about the idea that sustainable policies do not have to be at the expense of economic growth, but can instead create economic growth. It is a common misperception that sustainability and economic growth contradict each other, but this is not the case. While transitioning from coal to renewable energy would call for a major economic transformation, it is technologically and economically possible. As we have seen in this class, ideas and technology are major drivers of growth.

It is frustrating that politicians continuously support policies that are not sustainable and simultaneously impede economic growth. Why do we subsidize the coal industry when renewable energy could create greater economic growth and would create positive externalities? Why is there a law in Virginia that limits the amount of renewable energy universities can produce on campus when they could create growth for the renewable energy sector? Solving the issue of anthropogenic climate change seems so simple, but humans are not entirely rational. To make matter worse, we have a president telling people that windmills slaughter bald eagles and solar panels cause electricity outages when it is cloudy outside. We live in a world where people are willing to lie and withhold information in order to serve their own interests.

For some reason, I remain optimistic that someday we will see the light. The technology is out there; we just have to be willing to restructure the way we live. We have to change the way we think and talk about sustainability, then maybe we can make the necessary changes.

Lauren Paolano

The World Bank’s Report, “Turn Down the Heat,” provided me with some shocking data of the consequences for the present and future development of the world. This report mainly focuses on the risks of climate change to development in Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East, and North Africa, and parts of Europe and Central Asia. There are already signs of our diminishing environment such as dramatic climate changes, heat and weather extremes impacting citizens, damaging crops and coastlines which will further put necessities like food, water, and energy security as risk. I was most certainly not fully aware of the extent of these impacts.

In today's modern world, we see and hear a lot about global warming and the effects of climate change in the news and on social media. It further worries me when seeing the extreme data about how severely damaged our environment is, and it seems to only be getting worse at the rate people are going. Specifically, with the Amazon rainforest in the news over the past few months with the spread of wildfires, I was intrigued to learn more about its' status. I did some further reading and found that the 2019 Amazon rainforest wildfires season saw a year-to-year surge in fires occurring in the Amazon rainforest biome within Brazil, Paraguay and Peru during the year's dry season. I was amazed that the increase in fires are thought to have been started by farmers and loggers clearing land for crops or grazing utilizing the slash and burn technique. The report discusses how the Amazon rainforest is at risk of large-scale, irreversible changes in the Earth's biomes and ecosystems. Amazon is the largest rainforest in the world and a vital carbon store that slows down the pace of global warming. The burning of the rainforest, however, isn't the biggest problem. Deforestation is. The World's Bank Report previously stated, "with increasing warming degradation…of the Amazon rainforest is increasingly possible potentially turning the forest into a large carbon source during dry years and triggering further climate change", which we saw come to fruition this past August.

Kristina Lozinskaya

The World Bank’s 2014 “Turn Down the Heat” report provides an extremely depressing depiction of the future that makes me wonder if we are going back to the times when people fought for water and other basic necessities. Nothing, it seems, will stay the same once the world is 2-4 degrees Celsius hotter, nor would the horrendous consequences of the climate change omit anyone, with the poorest, as always, bearing the highest cost. It is enormously difficult (and psychologically damaging, in a way) to try to summarize all the adversities humanity is certain to face over the next few decades if the issue progresses at the same rate, taking us to the point of no return. Instead of describing a general picture, I want to share some specific statistics that shocked me most:

1. CO2 emissions in 2014 were estimated to be growing at about 2.5 percent per year.
After looking it up on the Internet, I found that it is hard to say if we are doing better now because even though the 2018 emissions grew by 1.7%, it was the highest rate of growth since 2013 and 70% higher than the average increase since 2010 (IEA). Especially considering the acute problem of wildfires in the Amazon, California, and Siberia this year, I do not dare to expect the problem to improve anytime soon, unfortunately.
2. Observed rates of ocean acidification are already the highest in 300 million years, and rates of sea-level rise are the highest for 6,000 years.
I am really curious about how and why ocean acidification occurs and terrified at the sea levels rise. It is also particularly devastating to realize that in the future, the Caribbean might not exist anymore as mentioned in the paper.
3. A projected 80-percent increase in the frequency of the strongest north Atlantic tropical cyclones for a 4°C world, compared to present. Should we wave Florida goodbye too?
4. In a 2°C world, highly unusual heat extremes would occur on average in one of the summer months in each year from the 2040s onward.
This leads to the spike in heat stress levels, which will undermine regional labor productivity, putting a burden on health infrastructure. Incredible! In addition to all other problems, humanity might be in no condition to cope with them… physically.
And lastly,
5. Under current policies, there is about a 40 percent chance of exceeding 4°C by 2100.
This is why this report is a desperate cry for humanity to act *now*.

I found the regional studies really interesting too and was especially astonished at the problems facing the Middle East and North Africa, whose population is projected to double by 2050. Considering how reliant the region is on imports for food already, its future looks very grim. Add to it how climate change threatens global security by sparking large-scale migration, and we could have a “dystopian” kind of world with disadvantaged groups trapped in adversely affected areas that they cannot move out from because of the lack of funds or connections. The only thing that is different from “dystopia” here is that it could actually happen soon – sometime before 2100 (pt 5).

The last thing I wanted to share is that this November, at the Amnesty International Conference in Richmond, I had an opportunity to attend the incredibly eye-opening panel on climate change. We focused mostly on who is behind climate change, and among many things that surprised me, I learned that just 100 fossil fuel-producing companies are responsible for 71% of global greenhouse gas emissions since 1988 (https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2017/jul/10/100-fossil-fuel-companies-investors-responsible-71-global-emissions-cdp-study-climate-change). I think that it is essential for economists and public policy advocates to persevere lobbying governments to make those companies stop their harmful practices because their “money-making” is steadily destroying the world. I am also looking forward to discussing what we, as students and citizens, can do to prevent the problem of climate change from deteriorating further.

Olivia Luzzio

The statistics and insights provided by the World Bank report presented a thorough and disturbing vision of the planet as it continues to warm. The sections of the report that struck me the most were those discussing the potential depletion of renewable energy sources if the temperature on Earth continues to rise. For example, extreme droughts in the Mediterranean region are expected to decrease accessibility of hydropower, and extreme seasons in Central Asia are expected to destabilize hydropower in the region. This is particularly disturbing because it means that not only are conditions worsening with the warming of the planet, but we stand to lose the renewable energy solutions that are necessary to stop the planet from warming further. This underlines the importance of implementing renewable energy solutions before it is too late.
I had the opportunity to spend Washington Term last spring interning at the Business Council for Sustainable Energy in DC. The BCSE is a trade association of businesses in the energy sector committed to reducing carbon emissions and transitioning to clean energy. One of my main responsibilities was to attend congressional hearings relating to energy and the environment and write follow-up reports for the BCSE’s federal policy committee. It was alarming how policymakers were able to twist the narratives constructed by the World Bank (as well as other organizations like NASA and the UN) according to their own agendas. As demonstrated in the World Bank report, global warming presents an imminent threat to development worldwide. This threat is only proliferated by the disconnect between science and public policy. In one Ways and Means hearing, a scientist at NASA testified and showed both the sea level rise that has already occurred over the past century and the additional sea level rise expected by 2100 in the Myrtle Beach area. Even with the images and statistics right in front of him, the Congressman from Myrtle Beach’s district refused to believe or even consider anything she said. Ultimately, it is this refusal to acknowledge the validity of the threat and commit to combatting it that will allow climate change to destroy our society.

Tommy Mottur

The World Bank's "Turn Down the Heat" article provides a comprehensive analysis of the damages posed by impending global climate change, touching on almost all industries and facets of life that will be affected by this crisis. They also make a point of the article to argue that strong action, comprised mostly of altering our current methods of production and transportation, is empirically "worth it" financially. Although this fact may seem obvious to those who know that left uninhibited, climate change will make uninhabitable thousands of square miles of coastal areas, some of the most populated places on earth, or that it will both greatly and permanently negatively impact crop production in nearly every area on earth, it is still important to clearly state the massive difference between the cost of not taking action against climate change and the relatively meager cost of taking immediate action to prevent it.
One of the most intriguing parts of the article was the description it repeatedly went through for different continents where the negative effects of climate change not only were predicted to manifest themselves immediately in terms of decreased crop turnout and higher sea levels, but also, and perhaps even more importantly, through the "ripple effects" it would have on economic metrics. Similar to how low confidence levels in the future ability of a government to finance their bonds will cause a run on a bank, inciting financial crises, the decreased productivity in agricultural markets will cause food prices to rise not only due to the decreased supply of goods, but also due to what will be the increasingly prevailing belief that crop productivity and the hospitality of the current climate will only get worse as time goes on. In this sense, it also strikes me that it is similar to the concept of inflation, where the belief that a currency will depreciate will incentivize individuals to spend in the short term. In this way, climate change may have a similar effect: Individuals holding the belief that their homes may be more vulnerable to hurricanes and other natural disasters, or subject to decreased fertility for their crops, will see their homes and businesses devalued in the long term. This "ripple effect" is something that is not as touched on in the common discussion about climate change, but it both draws interesting parallels to economics and presents a reason as to why climate change will be all the more dangerous as we move through the 21st century.


I found the World Bank's report, Turn Down the Heat, to be a particularly interesting analysis of the climate change data gathered thus far. I also appreciate that fact that the report was highly critical and straight forward.

Many times, when listening to various news outlets, I often hear the idea of climate change being debated by two talking head on a screen as if there is some sort of debate about whether or not climate change fundamentally exist. This is particularly troubling because it plays a major role in down playing some of the drastic effects the world could see if we don't take major steps now towards reducing our ecological footprint. I believe this report from the world bank does a good job of conveying just how urgent the a problem climate change has become. Rather than presenting the scientific data in an overly technical way, the report lays out the drastic effects of climate change in terms of real world effects. One of the reasons I believe climate change has been such a difficult idea to sell is because the people with the imperial data (the scientest) often do a very poor job of communicating just how grave the climate change situtation is. This report does of great job of translating jargon filled environmental data into real world effects like rising sea levels, increased drop failure, etc.

Another thing I found particularly interesting about the report was its focus on the developing nations rather than the developing goal. Don't get me wrong, in action on the issue of climate change will certainly have adverse effects on every nation regardless of development status or income level. Nonetheless it is incredibly important to bring climate issues that face mainly the developing world to the forefront. This is because many of these nations rely on their natural resources as major factor to their economy; resources that could be ruined if we dont act swiftly to reduce our emission and reduce our enviromental footprint especially in the developed world.

On a related note, I also found the peice "This world is enough" to be very interesting as well. I really appreciate that it tackled the myth that we have to make drastic changes to the way we live our live in order to stop climate change. Instead, there are steps we can take to make our energy harvesting process more effiecent and thus maintain our lifestyle with a vastly lower enviromental footprint.

Prakriti Panthi

Reading about the real affects of climate change was disheartening to say the least. To read how much of a negative impact a 2 degree change in the temperature of the world will have in all over the world is shocking. The world bank document really outlined how far-reaching the effect of climate change can be. Additionally, in Nepal you can see a lot of the effects that the authors talk about in the document.
Every year you read in the Nepali news about floods, fire and drought happening all over the country. Nepal already naturally has a problem with flooding during the monsoon season, and if the monsoon pattern alters due to climate change then the country might face even more dire consequences. Additionally, due the the prevalence of sloping terrains in the hilly regions, there is a risk of landslide. We already witness a rising number of soil erosion, land slide and flood every year caused by climate change. Like the article outlined, this impacts the rural and poor population more as they are more likely to live in those regions. Another sad realization for me was that more than half of the population that lives in the hilly region of Nepal relies on agriculture, forest, livestock, and how these these are affected by climate change. Climate change does disproportionately affect the poor agriculture-dependent community in Nepal when unexpected flood during winter and drought during the monsoon season messes with the crop growth. Additionally, they have the least resources to deal with a climate-change related disaster.
It is not clear to me to see what a poor developing country can do to fight climate change when majority of the people are depended on the natural resources to maintain their livelihood. Promoting sustainable agricultural practices is necessary, but like we talked about in class last week, how can we think about the poverished population of today as well as the future generation?


The World Bank report titled “Turn Down the Heat” was very informative and quite shocking. Even under what is considered to be a best-case scenario, where temperatures only increase by 2 degrees Celsius, the effects will still be catastrophic for most of the world. I think this report does a really good job linking how the increase in global temperature will have far reaching and cascading effects into many different aspects of life and the economy. It is easy to understand that carbon emissions will lead to the warming of the earth, but it is often difficult to fully grasp the entirety of the effects of the warming. It seems there is almost no aspect of worldwide ecological systems that won’t be impacted from even 2 degrees C of warming. Perhaps what is most striking from the report are the dramatic effects on crop yields due to increased heat, decreased rainfall, more extreme variation in precipitation, and soil degradation. In some cases yields for staple crops like wheat, rice, and maize can decrease by 70%. The effects on the agriculture sectors of countries from these three regions, many of which are still quite underdeveloped, would be staggering. Such impacts make poverty reduction and nutrition a significantly more difficult challenge to meet. These countries are much more dependent on agricultures contribution to their economies. In Egypt agriculture contributes 15% to GDP, 13% in Morocco, 13% in Honduras, and Argentina at 11%. Reducing yields by even 20% would be devastating to these economies.

I also found it disturbing how much migration is likely to happen as a result of climate change. There will certainly be parts of the world by 2050 that are simply not habitable to live either because of extreme heat, lack of water, or lack of economic opportunity resulting from climate change. We are already seeing this now. The migrant crisis from central American to the USA is in large part being driven because of climate change. Many of the rural communities in central America are finding it increasingly difficult to make a living and grow enough food from their various farms. PBS has a great article about this (https://www.pbs.org/newshour/world/how-climate-change-is-driving-emigration-from-central-america). The Syrian and North African refugee crisis are also being understood more deeply to be influenced by climate related stresses (https://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2018/jan/15/study-finds-that-global-warming-exacerbates-refugee-crises). It is reasonable to assume many areas in the middle east and north Africa will become not be able to support substantial human life due to lack of water, lack of infrastructure to make up for that, and rising sea levels. I was surprised to read that North Africa is particularly vulnerable to sea level changes. This makes logical sense as the Sahara lies just south making the coasts the most accessible and logical places to live. As sea levels rise however, these urban centers will become under increasing pressure. It will be important for the global community to formulate a unified solution to deal with the impending climate refugee crisis. If not, massive outbreaks of violence will be likely, especially in the already conflict prone middle east and north Africa.

I find it disheartening how unequal the effects of climate change will be distributed relative to the people who caused most of them. The developed countries are largely responsible for a majority of green house gas emissions which are causing global warming. Low income countries are the ones which will be most significantly affected because of their location, geography, and inability to fund adaption and mitigation programs. The global community must commit to urgently take significant measures to cut global carbon emissions and assist developing nations through the impending crisis.

Adrian Lam

In my business class, we had a lengthy discussion regarding agency theory, which is when an individual acts based off of self-interest, often at the expense of the larger welfare of the group.

Specifically, one of the examples that stuck with me was when we discussed a theoretical dilemma faced by a low-level Jet Blue employee. Let’s say this flight attendant is offered the anonymous choice to choose between whether the company’s profit increases by $10,000,000 or to have a free chicken sandwich. Given that his decision remains anonymous, I was surprised when many of my classmates opted for a free chicken sandwich that is valued so much less than the $10,000,000 that could have increased the company’s bottom line. This occurred because the employee did not experience any personal gains from the first choice, whereas he received a free chicken sandwich in the second choice. Ultimately, the moral of the story is that individuals will often act selfishly and make decisions that benefit themselves instead of focusing on the greater good. I believe agency theory is especially relevant when we are dealing with the issues of climate change and unsustainable CO2 emissions.

In the World Bank’s report on “confronting the new climate normal,” I was deeply saddened to see all the negative repercussions and alterations that have occurred due to global warming. From large-scale, irreversible damage to Earth’s biosystems to massive loss of glaciers to increased droughts and extreme weather, there is undeniable evidence that we are making permanently and irreversibly damaging the environment at unsustainable rates. Report after report, the evidence is clearly present that our actions today have long-lasting impacts on the environment.
Personally, I believe that the majority of these negative trends could be avoided, but humans are often too selfish. For example, many businesses value short-term economic gain over the long-term damaging effects that their many tons of carbon emissions have on the environment. Meanwhile, individuals can preach being environmentally-friendly while still living very wasteful lifestyles. I think there are two main points we have to consider in remedying these problems.

First off, we must recognize that global warming is a threat that applies to all of us, both poor and rich alike. The report does an excellent job at describing how those living in poverty are likely to disproportionately suffer from the consequences of climate change. I agree with our discussion point from Tuesday’s class that it is up to the developed countries to take leading stances on fighting climate change, especially since the US has one of the largest per capita CO2 emissions in the world https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2019/01/chart-of-the-day-these-countries-have-the-largest-carbon-footprints/ . In fact, the data from that link above seem to suggest that China and US alone seem to account for more than 1/3 of all the emissions in the world.

Second, I think it is essential that we better align the goals of these corporations to reduce agency problems. For example, we can adopt a “carrot and stick” approach, where we set up a system of incentives and punishments, such as a carbon tax, in order to minimize the damage large corporations have on our Earth. Ultimately, the forecasts from the World Bank should be more than enough to warn us about the dangers of continuing our unsustainable ways.

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