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Global Climate Change DigestArchives of the
Global Climate Change Digest

A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999



Item #d97oct9

"Achieving Low-Cost Emissions Targets," S.H. Schneider (Dept. Biol. Sci., Stanford Univ., Stanford CA 94304; e-mail:, L.H. Goulder, Nature, 389(6646), 13-14, Sep. 4, 1997.

Although there are compelling reasons for delaying significant CO2 emission abatement, short-term abatement policies are also needed. A carbon tax is the most economically efficient and administratively flexible instrument for immediate policy action, and is preferable to subsidies for research and development of alternative, low-carbon energy sources.

Item #d97oct10

"Climate Science and Insurance Risk," A.F. Michaels (Wrigley Inst. for Environ. Studies, Univ. Southern Calif., Los Angeles CA 90098; e-mail:, D. Malmquist et al.,Nature, 389(6648), 225-227, Sep. 18, 1997.

Partnerships between insurance companies and climate scientists are a model for how academic science can help business, to the benefit of both parties and the wider public. Discusses the partnership between these two groups created in Bermuda in 1994, as insurers searched for risk analysis solutions to replace traditional actuarial approaches. Also suggests other potential links between scientists and business decision-makers.

Item #d97oct11

"More Realism, Less Idealism: What Must Be Learnt from the Failure of the Earth Summit + 5,"OPEC Bull., p. 3, July 1997.

The European Union failed to advance its climate change proposals at the Denver Summit of Eight and at Earth Summit + 5 because they are not necessary, economically fair, or sensible. In the run-up to Kyoto, countries have an opportunity to reassess the situation so that we see less green idealism and more sober realism.

Item #d97oct12

"Climate Change Issues in the Build-up to the Third Conference of the Parties," S. Ghanem,OPEC Bull., pp. 7-8, June 1997.

Expresses concerns of countries whose economies are heavily dependent on fossil fuel exports. Advocates a system to give equitable treatment to all carbon-based energy sources, including a carbon tax not an energy tax, and removal of all subsidies on fossil fuels.

Item #d97oct13

Three commentaries in OPEC Bull., May 1997:

"High Stakes: How Climate Change Negotiations Could Affect Oil Producing Countries," S. Ghanem, pp. 4-6. Elaborates on the themes of the previous article.

"Unfinished Business: The Scientific Case Against the Global Climate Treaty," S.F. Singer (Science & Environ. Policy Project, Washington, D.C.), 7-16. Argues in some detail against several scientific points used as evidence for the need for the climate treaty. Successful adaptation to climate change requires specific actions-many of which will help limit greenhouse gas emissions-that will stimulate sustainable economic growth and continued technical progress. These two goals will prove useful if limitation of greenhouse gas emissions ever becomes necessary.

"Possible Effects of Emissions Reductions on Developing and OPEC Nations," W.D. Montgomery (Charles River Assoc.), C.D. Schock, pp. 17-22. Results from an economic impact model show that economic losses will not be confined to the developed countries that are actually committed to taking measures. Developing countries will suffer as well including the oil producers.

Item #d97oct14

"Global Warming and the Political Economy of Threats," D. Edwards,The Ecologist, 27(1), 2-4, Jan.-Feb. 1997.

Argues that the perceived seriousness of a threat to society is largely determined by the extent to which the threat helps or hinders political and economic interests. Demonstrates by comparing the tepid response of the media to the very real threat of global warming, on the one hand, and its promotion in the 1950s of the politically-generated threat to the West posed by the Soviet Union, on the other.

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