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Paying for PollutionWhy a Carbon Tax is Good for America$
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Gilbert E. Metcalf

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190694197

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190694197.001.0001

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Business as Usual: What Are the Costs?

Business as Usual: What Are the Costs?

(p.23) Chapter 2 Business as Usual: What Are the Costs?
Paying for Pollution

Gilbert E. Metcalf

Oxford University Press

This chapter describes the additional damages we will face if we don’t cut our carbon pollution. More frequent occurrences of extreme weather will cause more damages. We will also have to pay for stronger climate-proof infrastructure to adapt to new weather conditions and change our lifestyles to stay out of harm’s way. The chapter also addresses the uncertainties of climate change and suggests a way for climate skeptics to think about climate change. The example of Pascal’s Wager is used to illustrate why it is riskier not to act on climate change even in the face of uncertainty about the magnitude of the damages.

Keywords:   climate damages, mitigation, adaptation, Pascal’s Wager, uncertainty

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