ThinkProgress has a great piece today outlining the Republican (and their sympathetic media) attempts to frame greenhouse gas emission reduction strategies as devastating to the US economy.
The report released today by the United Nation's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change focussed on potential C02 mitigation plans and the economics of implementing such plans. The authors of the summary report conclude that, “the cost of reducing CO2 emissions to a stable level will be about .12% of the annual gross domestic product.” When you consider how many people currently inhabit the earth, this dollar amount is pennies compared to the potential devastation to our environment and way of life.
It's not surprising, that the likes of right-wing media star Rush Limbaugh has a different take on the costs. To quote: “[Liberals] would have us destroy our economy and millions of jobs based on pseudoscience.”
And of the same mind is former chair of the US Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, Jim Inhofe (R-OK): “Global warming is an alarmism. It’s a type of a hoax. The reality is that a cap on carbon is a cap on the economy.”
The chances of Inhofe and Limbaugh coming out with a public mea culpa are very minimal. At the least, let's hope that the sobering words of the leading experts on climate change today will play some role in cooling down the doom and gloom rhetoric on the right that has played such a huge role in delaying any real action by the US government to curb greenhouse gas emissions.