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November 11, 2005

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dsquared

Presumably these people mean that it will cost x% of GDP over that period. That isn't the same as x% off the growth rate and I do wish that people wouldn't confuse the two so savagely. The long term growth rate can only be changed by a) changing the growth rate (which Kyoto is unlikely to do) b) changing the underlying rate of capital accumulation (which once more, I don't think anyone is presuming that it will do) or c) changing the rate of technological progress (which it might actually help, assuming that there are some spinoffs from clean energy research).

There is a big, big difference between "reducing the rate of growth over a period of x years", where x is a small number and "reducing the rate of growth". The second would be much more serious than the first, which is why people who are concerned about the first do their damnedest to imply the second.

dsquared

(PS: 1.1% of German GDP is a lot of money, but they spent far more on integration. It's well within the normal business cycle fluctuation)

Abiola Lapite

I am in fact assuming that we're talking 0.8-3.1% less GDP growth over the time period in question rather than an implausible shaving off of that much growth per year, but even on that assumption, a 0.1% net reduction is hardly likely to make any difference whatsoever: if we assume a tradeoff of 1% of European GDP for a 0.1% emission reduction, and we're told that we need a 5% reduction in emissions to make a tangible difference to long-term global warming, it's quite clear that no European nation's citizens would ever be willing to accept such a trade.

ivan

Besides we have to consider that less economic growth will make reducing global emissions more diffucult, not easier.

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