Counting the Cost of Global Warming: A Report to the Economic and Social Research Council on Research by John Broome and David Ulph

Strond: White Horse Press (1992)
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Since the last ice age, when ice enveloped most of the northern continents, the earth has warmed by about five degrees. Within a century, it is likely to warm by another four or five. This revolution in our climate will have immense and mostly harmful effects on the lives of people not yet born. We are inflicting this harm on our descendants by dumping greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. We can mitigate the harm a little by taking measures to control our emissions of these gases, and to adapt to the changes by, for instance, building sea walls around coastlines threatened by rising sea levels. But these measures will be very expensive, and the costs will be born by us, the present generation, whereas the benefits will come to future generations. How much should we sacrifice for the sake of the future? Economists and philosophers have independently worked on the question of our responsibility to future generations. This book brings their work together and applies it to global warming. It suggests a programme for future research on the economic and ethical issues. The book is intended for economists, and for philosophers and other social scientists who have a little knowledge of economic methods.



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John Broome
University Of Oxford

References found in this work

The Humean theory of motivation.Michael Smith - 1987 - Mind 96 (381):36-61.
Intransitivity and the mere addition paradox.Larry S. Temkin - 1987 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 16 (2):138-187.
Against evaluator relativity: A response to Sen.Donald H. Regan - 1983 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 12 (2):93-112.
Rawls on average and total utility: A comment.Brian Barry - 1977 - Philosophical Studies 31 (5):317 - 325.
The economic value of life.John Broome - 1985 - Economica 52:281-94.

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