Peter Fox-Penner, a principal in The Brattle Group’s Washington, DC office, authored a letter to the editor on the global economy’s adjustment to climate constraints that was published in the September 2, 2010 edition of Financial Times. His letter was in response to an article that ran on August 30 which indicated that likely U.S. climate policies would raise business costs significantly in their first decade and require a drastic change in consumer behavior.
Dr. Fox-Penner argues in his letter that “economic studies of the global economy’s adjustment to climate constraints show that a 40-year path to stabilisation will not require ‘revolutionary’ changes in lifestyles.” Rather, most of the necessary changes are already accepted and under way, in the form of driving electric as opposed to petrol-powered vehicles and making fewer car trips per capita. The most revolutionary changes will be in the pattern of urban development and the construction of buildings, which will inherently take decades but will not deprive the nation of a prosperous future and consumer choice.
To read the letter, "Cool down the revolutionary rhetoric," please visit the Financial Times website.