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Sam Fankhauser

Managing climate change requires action on both its causes (reducing emissions) and its consequences (adapting to impacts that can no longer be avoided). Human societies can thrive in many climatic conditions. However, such adaptation is not necessarily smooth, and it cannot be taken for granted. This review synthesises the contribution of economics to the study and practice of climate resilience and adaptation, identifying some of the most influential articles by economists on climate change adaptation since the topic became a subject of academic interest.
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Sam Fankhauser

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Sam Fankhauser

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Giles Atkinson and Sam Fankhauser

The unprecedented advances in economic development witnessed over the past decades cannot continue if economic progress comes at the expense of the natural environment. The Sustainable Development Goals, agreed globally in 2015, define a vision of human development where economic, social and environmental domains interact to shape the prospects for future prosperity. This timely literature review highlights the contribution of economics to the study of sustainable development. It discusses some of the most influential articles on the topic by economists over the past fifty years. Environmental sustainability, an inherently interdisciplinary topic, is analysed from the perspectives of applied microeconomics, environmental and resource economics, ecological economics, development economics and public economics. Written by two subject experts, this research review is indispensable for anyone interested or working in the field.
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Giles Atkinson and Sam Fankhauser

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Giles Atkinson and Sam Fankhauser

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Giles Atkinson and Sam Fankhauser

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Alex Bowen and Sam Fankhauser

Chapter 7 reviews the policy measures required to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. They constitute the core content of climate change legislation. The starting point of the chapter is an understanding of the market, policy and behavioural failures that prevent private decision makers from adopting low-carbon solutions on their own accord. The chapter advocates carbon pricing as an effective way of incentivizing emission reductions, although command-and-control interventions are equally possible and have often been successful. Additional problems that need to be addressed include failures in capital markets, externalities related to low-carbon innovation, network issues and barriers preventing the uptake of energy efficiency measures. There are also policy distortions, not least the subsidization of fossil fuels and the underpricing of energy. The chapter further recommends interventions to mitigate the wider socioeconomic impacts of carbon policies, in particular their effect on competitiveness and fuel poverty. These measures do not directly reduce emissions, but they make climate change policy fairer, less disruptive and more acceptable to the public.

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Edited by Alina Averchenkova, Sam Fankhauser and Michal Nachmany

A deepening understanding of the importance of climate change has caused a recent and rapid increase in the number of climate change or climate-related laws. Trends in Climate Change Legislation offers an astute analysis of the political, institutional and economic factors that have motivated this surge, placing it into context.