Sunday, April 13, 2014

An Explanation for Why the IPCC's Reports are Increasingly Ignored

An old literature in economics states that only "new news" moves markets.  Do the recent IPCC reports say anything new?  Those who know that climate change is a major challenge "learn" that they were right.  Those who deny that climate change is happening or believe that we will adapt to these new challenges learn little from these reports.  Who is at the margin who might learn something from these consensus documents?  

 The IPCC would be wise to engage in much more geographic specificity where they should have country experts speak about specific regions within each nation to discuss challenges that the region faces, is climate change causing these challenges?  What adaptation strategies can be used to protect the place and the people?  Is the free market up to the challenge? Are government officials taking action?  The answer that will appear again and again is poverty and corruption is inhibiting adaptation.  So, this suggests that economic development, educational attainment, and political competition are needed to help the poorest nations to adapt.