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Stern: "I got it wrong on climate change – it's far, far worse"

Author(s): Asia Global Institute

Date: Jan 28, 2013

Theme(s): Sustainability

Publications: Opinions & Speeches

Academic Council Member Nicholas Stern speaks out on danger to economies as planet absorbs less carbon and is "on track" for a 4C rise.

1. Nicholas Stern says he has underestimated the threat rising temperatures pose to the world’s economy. In 2006, in a UK government commissioned report called the “Stern Review”, he said that temperatures would rise between two to three degrees above the long-term average. Now, however, he believes that the rise will be four to five degrees as the atmosphere is absorbing less carbon and emissions are on the rise.

2. Stern supports the UK’s Climate Change Act, but investments should focus on “greening” the economy. Some countries, including China, now fully grasp the seriousness of climate change. He says governments should act “forcefully” to steer their economies towards less energy-intensive, more environmentally sustainable technologies.

3. Stern’s comments came as Jim Yong Kim, the new president of the World Bank, warned that there could be conflicts over natural resources if the forecasted three to four degrees rise would prove accurate. Kim said there would be no solution to climate change without private sector involvement.

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