Who Will Pay for Climate Change?

By Gerry Brady | Blog

Feb 13

A survey, conducted jointly by Yale and George Mason Universities in the USA, last November and December on 1,114 American adults, showed dramatic shifts in public sentiment about belief in global warming. It found that 73 % of Americans now believe global warming is happening, an increase of 10 percentage points from March 2015. And more than 60 % now believe that humans are the cause.

But the survey also showed that Americans don’t want to pay very much to fight climate change. A $1 per month fee was favored by 57 percent of those surveyed. However, if the monthly charge increased to $10 a month, just 28 percent would be supportive, while 68 percent would be opposed.

$ 1 per month is not much even if paid by ALL adults. I wonder if this is sufficient expenditure to save the planet, amounting to approximately $ 3 Billion per year in the US. That sounds impressive but it is just 0.015 % of GDP (total transactions).

$ 10 per month is better but still amounts to just $ 30 Billion per year if paid by all adults in the US. That sounds more impressive but it is just 0.15 % of GDP (total transactions).

I find this contradiction everywhere in the climate change mitigation debate. People are concerned enough about climate change to “support” new technologies such as solar panels and windmills. They may even be prepared to buy solar panels for their home roof. But they still want large 4 wheel drive cars, trucks and SUVs and they want to travel overseas and inter-state by air as often as possible. Behavior modification is not even on the agenda while they are being offered the magic of technological solutions.

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