Price to save coral reefs is "one year of GDP growth"

July 8, 2012, University of Queensland

( -- The cost of transforming the world’s energy systems to address rising carbon dioxide levels is little more than one-tenth of one per cent of growth in global gross domestic product per annum, according to a University of Queensland researcher.

UQ Global Change Institute Director Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg will discuss the cost at the International Coral Reef Symposium ( at Cairns this week (July 9-13).

Professor Hoegh-Guldberg is the coordinating lead-author of the Oceans chapter in the next Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report.

He cites an IPCC analysis which shows that slowing global GDP growth by 0.12 per cent a year over the next 50 years will stabilise global temperature.

“That expenditure is the equivalent to taking off one year of GDP growth over the next 50 years,” Professor Hoegh-Guldberg said.

“It would enable atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide to stabilise at levels that will give coral reefs a chance.

“Without this action, they don’t stand a chance.

“It’s very clear that we have one last opportunity to make the changes that are needed to preserve this brilliant and economically important ecosystem on our planet.

“And the are minimal when they are aligned against the huge and impossible costs of trying to adapt ecosystems like coral reefs to the changes being inflicted on them.”

Rising sea surface temperatures, caused by increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases, including CO2, in the atmosphere, increase the likelihood of mass bleaching events which kill coral reefs.

Reef restoration methods – while effective at some local scales – are not economically-viable on a large scale, according to Professor Hoegh-Guldberg.

“To replant the Great Barrier Reef by planting fragments that cost $5 a piece to grow in the aquaculture facilities across 40,000 km² of the Great Barrier Reef would cost $200 billion,” Professor Hoegh-Guldberg said.

“If we then decided that we would want at least 20 different species within those communities, the cost would be $4,000 billion. The numbers are quickly astronomical and impossible.”

Professor Hoegh-Guldberg said as the situation now stood, modelling for the upcoming fifth assessment report of the IPCC showed that under most scenarios were in extreme peril from warming oceans.

He said as temperatures increased, so would the frequency of ‘killer’ coral events.

“Considering that coral communities take at least 10 to 20 years to recover - having a mass bleaching event every two to three years is essentially to admit that those coral communities no longer survive and recover,” he said.

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2.5 / 5 (8) Jul 08, 2012
And how do you propose to do this? Tax people indiscriminately and then give the money to governments who have no idea what to do with it?
1.7 / 5 (11) Jul 08, 2012
Yes! YES! YEEEES! I see the signs. The signs of change are everywhere. I see the change.
The weather Gods are angry and the Priests of CO2 Climastrology say we must now please and honor the Gods with gifts of Human sacrifice of our lifestyles, not theirs, just ours.
Ug ug Cave man see warm. Cave man put out fire to please angry weather gods. ugug
2.2 / 5 (13) Jul 08, 2012
slowing global GDP growth by 0.12 per cent a year

The various socialist govts around the world are doing their best to stop growth.
2.3 / 5 (3) Jul 08, 2012

As a real fiscal conservative I've already have done this at 20% of the cost of using fossil fuels. Done right it should cost far less than current FF costs that consumers are not paying.

PV panels are now retail at $1k/kw which is less that coal generation if well shopped as is wind.

Solar thermal electric, CSP, is really no different than an A/C run in reverse as a heat engine. Plus one has the condensor heat for heating, hot water, etc. It can have either heat storage or biomass back up. Such a system in real mass production would be under $2k/kw

Wind is more simple than a moped and little more cost in mass production.

My EV's get 250 and 600mpg equivalent and compared to similar ICE's cost 25% of them to run.

RE, eff costs are dropping and FF are rising so only a fool would stick with FF. As the say a fool and their money is soon parted. How much money did you part with for FF energy this month?

The only socialism is corporate with $500B/yr the US gives oil.
2.3 / 5 (12) Jul 08, 2012
"New economic powers continue to rise and older ones, ones very much like our own country, continue to struggle. Theyre weighed down by debts they cant control, by entitlements you can no longer afford and growth that shows no signs of returning, he said.

Under our conservative government, Canada will not slip back the way so many other developed countries are slipping back, he said. To succeed what the world must become in the future is what Canada is today."

"Gerhard Schröder, a Social Democrat, was German chancellor from 1998 to 2005, and during his second term his government lowered taxes, revamped unemployment benefits and streamlined labor laws. Mr. Schröder's shakedown of the welfare statedubbed Agenda 2010 when it was launched in 2003has been credited with insulating Germany against the debt mess that would later befall Southern Europe. "
2.1 / 5 (11) Jul 08, 2012
"But if Mr Harper has dominated Canadian politics for so long, it is not just because of his aggressive tactics. The Conservatives have accomplishments, too. Canadas economy, forecast to grow by 2-3% this year, stands out from its peers. Inflation (1.2%) and unemployment (7.3%) are comparatively low. The deficit, which ballooned after the 2008 slowdown, may be gone by 2014. The government is involved in several sets of free-trade talks, including ones with the EU, India and the Trans-Pacific Partnershipthough it has yet to say much about the costs and benefits. Mr Harper, at first a reluctant traveller, has taken to globetrotting."
3 / 5 (4) Jul 08, 2012
"slowing global GDP growth by 0.12 per cent a year over the next 50 years slowing global GDP growth by 0.12 per cent a year over the next 50 years"
As the alternative is to loose coral reefs, parts of Holland's coast and a piece of Florida, get more intense hurricanes and have more prevalent droughts, this sounds like a bargain.
The disruptions to global agriculture alone in a high-CO2 world would cost nearly as much as the proposed plan.
1.5 / 5 (8) Jul 08, 2012
I know only too well how hopeless it seems to convince impassioned supporters of the Socialist Idea by logical demonstration that their views are preposterous and absurd. I know too well that they do not want to hear, to see, or above all to think, and that they are open to no argument. But new generations grow up with clear eyes and open minds. It is for them that this book is written.

--Ludwig von Mises. Preface to the Second German Edition of Socialism: An Economic and Sociological Analysis
1.8 / 5 (10) Jul 08, 2012
"In 2010, influenced by the Tea Party and its focus on fiscal issues, 17 states elected Republican governors. And, according to an analysis, every one of those states saw a drop in their unemployment rates since January of 2011. Furthermore, the average drop in the unemployment rate in these states was 1.35%, compared to the national decline of .9%, which means, according to the analysis, that the job market in these Republican states is improving 50% faster than the national rate. "
1.5 / 5 (8) Jul 09, 2012
China and India is on track to produce 3x the CO2 the USA does.

Only total economic suicide and shutting down all industry would prevent CO2 from growing.

The idea that slowing growth by a small amount will change anything is a big lie.

In fact it is so big a lie, it is a bigger lie than all VD's lies put together.

A megalie. A gigalie.
5 / 5 (2) Jul 10, 2012
China and India is on track to produce 3x the CO2 the USA does.

Yeah, and that is a BIG PROBLEM. I wouldn't be so coy about it. You and R2 just don't get how big the greenhouse gas problem is. We all love scorched earth policies and scorched earth politics.
So what is your favorite Soylent Green recipe?
5 / 5 (2) Jul 10, 2012
Decline for Kansas = 0.8 percent - less than the national average
Decline for Main = 0.6 percent - less than the national average
Decline for Pennsylvania = 0.6 percent - less than the national average
Decline for Wisconsin = 0.9 percent - equal to the national average
Decline for South Dakota = 0.7 percent - less than the national average

I'm ashamed to say it, but that is about right. Our rightwing doesn't have a clue on how to improve anything. They only know how to line their buddies pockets.

1 / 5 (3) Jul 10, 2012
China and India is on track to produce 3x the CO2 the USA does.

Yeah, and that is a BIG PROBLEM. I wouldn't be so coy about it. You and R2 just don't get how big the greenhouse gas problem is. We all love scorched earth policies and scorched earth politics.
So what is your favorite Soylent Green recipe?


The people who have developed cheap clean shale gas as the solution.

Which all you greenies HATE.

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