Climate Change Could Cost World Economy $60 Trillion

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Methane release brought by climate change, specifically from melting ice in the Arctic, could cost the entire global economy over $60 trillion in the next several years, according to a report published in the journal Nature.

Melting arctic sea-ice, Nunavut, Canada
Mike Beauregard/flickr

University of Cambridge and Erasmus University researchers used economic modeling to compute the effects of a discharge of a 50-gigatonne reservoir of methane out of melting permafrost below the East Siberian Sea.

"The global impact of a warming Arctic is an economic time-bomb," said Gail Whiteman, an author of the report and professor of sustainability, management and climate change at the Rotterdam School of Management at the Erasmus University.

"In the absence of climate-change mitigation measures, the model calculates that it would increase mean global climate impacts by $60 trillion," said Chris Hope, a reader in policy modeling at the Cambridge Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge.

They estimated a total of $70 trillion damage in the global economy. However, the costs may either increase with other factors like ocean acidification or decrease to around $37 trillion with preventive steps or measures to reduce emissions.

The paper also cited that 80 percent of the costs extend to developing countries exposed to severe weather conditions, flooding, droughts and deprived health.

Source: Huffington Post