Two Americans win Nobel Economics prize on Climate Change work

Per an article this morning in Reuters, “Americans William Nordhaus and Paul Romer, pioneers in adapting economic theory to take better account of environmental issues and technological progress, shared the 2018 Nobel Economics Prize on Monday.”

Romer, with New York University, and Nordhaus, with Yale, developed models on the economic impact of dealing with climate change. Reuters cited the Nobel Academy in Stockholm, “‘Their findings have significantly broadened the scope of economic analysis by constructing models that explain how the market economy interacts with nature and knowledge.'”

This news is important as Americans still provide global leadership inspite of the dearth of leadership in the White House and EPA. America is moving forward on renewable energy, but our efforts are in spite of the absence and antagonistic actions of federal leadership. Arguably, more than any other issue, voters must ask their candidates where the stand on climate change actions and protecting the environment.

It is interesting that this came today as the headline article in The Charlotte Observer is “NC Leaders share concern about climate change.” These are 60 business, advocacy, former government and university leaders who have been brought together to speak to various problems. 45 of them responded to the question of climate change and, of the 45, only two naysayed climate change – one called it a hoax, while the other said it is real, but the jury is out on man’s influence. Think about that – 43 out of 45 define the problem and offer solutions.

Per these leaders, ideas include ceasing building on lands prone to flooding. NC has had two 500 year floods in two years, the same with Houston, Texas. Miami may be inescapably lost to continued flooding due to rising seas and porous limestone. The term we must understand as well is “sunny day flooding,” which happens more and more throughout the year.

These Nobel prize winners note we have to address the problem now while the costs are more manageable and can be sustained. The best teachers are the Dutch, as they have managed sea water encroachment for years. But, the impact also includes more and intense forest fires and the faster depletion of already dear water sources.

We have major problems occurring that Washington is not talking about and, in some cases, is making it worse. We must address climate change and invest more in  renewable energy, consider better coastal and flood plain building and consider a carbon tax. We must address fresh water loss that is hastened by climate change that is affecting farmers and other Americans. And, we must address pollution by companies and the growing mountain of plastic.

There are economic models that call to mind the old Fram oil filter commercial – you can pay me now or pay me later. Now, is far cheaper. Ask your politicians more questions and vote accordingly. If they do not admit there are problems, do not vote for them.

15 thoughts on “Two Americans win Nobel Economics prize on Climate Change work

  1. Note to Readers: The United Nations announced today if we don’t act aggressively in the next twelve years, we have sealed our fate. So, this is a major reason to vote against any politicians that are naysaying climate change. There is no Planet B.

  2. It has been interesting to see the focus of the Nobel prizes as they are announced this year. It seems there is a “subtle” (or not) middle finger to America’s current global policies. We should be so beyond arguing about causes of climate change and figuring out how to survive in the face of it. But too many of our leaders have their heads so far up their dark crannies that they can’t see the rain for the floods.

    • Linda, I don’t know if it is a conscious middle finger or serious minded people looking at what needs to be done. In essence, the train has left the station and the President has decided not to be on it. But, our country needs to be on it. It is saying to Trump, you go play at the kids table, while the grown ups talk. Keith

      • Yeah. I like that last line. I do think that people in general are more fired up. I remember when Bush was president, people worried about environmental issues and so they flocked to organizations like the Sierra Club. Sometimes it takes a fox in the henhouse to get caretakers to pay attention.

      • Linda, sadly, we were late to the ballgame as the GOP fought climate change early on. Then there was a brief period where Newt Gingrich went on TV with Nancy Pelosi to say he was wrong about climate change. When he later ran for President, he said he was wrong to say he was wrong. But, one of the funniest clips is of Speaker Boehner and Mitch McConnell say climate change is real and man influenced. They are recorded, but have backed off this.

        Young folks should pay attention to this as well as the debt. They are going to be left holding the bag with no money to pay for it. Keith

    • Janis, good things are happening, but they are vastly underreported and not enough. This is one reason I highlight news like this, so at least a few folks can see that may not have otherwise. Keith

      • I wish I shared your optimism, Keith. I’m not naturally a pessimist but the last several years’ events have made it harder to have hope. Perhaps (I hope!) the midterm elections will give me reason to feel optimistic again. I really fear that I, and many others, may go into a tailspin if the republicans maintain majorities in both houses.

    • Indeed. Between the assault on civil rights, environment and debt, young folks need to ask pointed questions of their politicians.

      I am watching a PBS Newshour piece on an island in the Chesapeake Bay called Tangiers that is being consumed by sea water. But, have no fear Trump told a fan of his on the island that they will be around for the next 100 years. Really?

  3. Dear Keith,

    Of course, the world is giving the finger to the GOP political players who now have control of 3 branches of government who refuse to accept scientific data regarding climate change.

    These Nobel prize winners William Nordhaus and Paul Romer deserve these awards for their exceptional work but it is also a well deserved message that needed to be sent to you know who.

    Hugs, Gronda

    • Gronda, I think it is more to just the finger. They are saying we need to move on. I saw where Australia’s fossil fuel funded folks are talking up coal after the UN Report. Keith

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