This text summarizes the content of the 2018 Nobel Prize winner W. Nordhaus. It is extended by some critical perspectives on this topic. The short dossier gives an overview of the most important texts we have read in the climate economics reading group.
In this blog article Steve Keen elaborates on flawed climate change modelling and mainstream economics forecasts. In specific, he stresses the climate change forecasts of the DICE model (“Dynamic Integrated model of Climate and the Economy”) by Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences winner William Nordhaus.
Environmental catastrophe looms large over politics: from the young person’s climate march to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal, increasing amounts of political space are devoted to the issue. Central to this debate is the question of whether economic growth inevitably leads to environmental issues such as depleted finite resources and increased waste, disruption of natural cycles and ecosystems, and of course climate change. Growth is the focal point of the de-growth and zero-growth movements who charge that despite efficiency gains, increased GDP always results in increased use of energy and emissions. On the other side of the debate, advocates of continued growth (largely mainstream economists) believe that technological progress and policies can ‘decouple’ growth from emissions.
As part of the 2019/2020 Exploring Economics Experience, one of our supporters Prof. Steve Keen gave a presentation to our editorial team. Read more
By conducting a discourse analysis (SKAD) in the field of academic economics textbooks, this paper aims at reconstructing frames and identity options offered to undergraduate students relating to the questions ‘Why study economics?’ and ‘Who do I become by studying economics?’. The analysis showed three major frames and respective identity offerings, all of which are contextualized theoretically, with prominent reference to the Foucauldian reflection of the science of Political Economy. Surprisingly, none of them encourages the student to think critically, as could have been expected in a pedagogical context. Taken together, economics textbooks appear as a “total structure of actions brought to bear upon possible action” (Foucault), therefore, as a genuine example of Foucauldian power structures.
Recovery from the Covid-19 crisis provides a chance to implement economic measures that are also beneficial from environmental and social perspectives. While ‘green’ recovery packages are crucial to support economies tracking a low-carbon transition in the short-term, green measures such as carbon pricing are also key to improving welfare in the long-term. This commentary specifies the need for carbon pricing, outlines its implications for our everyday lives, and explains how it works alongside value-based change in the context of climate action and societal well-being.