Peer-Reviewed Research Debunks Economy-Destroying Climate Change Claims

AP Photo/Jeff Chiu

It's been and will be a long, hot summer, and not just because of politics.

Earth has been and will always be an imperfectly stable planet. The climate changes. Throughout most of Earth's history, it's been warmer than it is now, and yes, since the last Ice Age, the climate has been slowly warming. Do humans make a difference? Sure — everything makes some difference. Quantifying that effect, though, isn't easy to do, and when you're talking about something as huge and chaotic as a planet's overall climate, the question becomes, "Is this critical enough to require actions that will badly damage the global economy and make life harder and more expensive for most of the population?"

Well, a recent peer-reviewed paper released in the American Journal of Economics and Sociology looked at the issue. Their answer? No.

A fine skeptical journal article waded through green pal review. Wonder of wonders!

The journal is the American Journal of Economics and Sociology. The article title is perfectly clear: “Carbon dioxide and a warming climate are not problems”.


But it is an “Early View Online Version of Record before inclusion in an issue” so get it before it gets too hot for the Journal. I understand it is very popular so the green screams are deafening.

Here's the conclusion:

“Observations show no increase in damage or any danger to humanity today due to extreme weather or global warming (Crok & May,  2023, pp. 140–161; Scafetta,  2024). Climate change mitigation, according to AR6, means curtailing the use of fossil fuels, even though fossil fuels are still abundant and inexpensive. Since the current climate is arguably better than the pre-industrial climate and we have observed no increase in extreme weather or climate mortality, we conclude that we can plan to adapt to any future changes. Until a danger is identified, there is no need to eliminate fossil fuel use.”

The authors are Andy May and Marcel Crok and as the first parenthetical reference above indicates they are building on prior work. Their 53 References are not paywalled and quite interesting.

Both authors list as from CLINTEL making this a worthy CLINTEL effort. In fact Croc is a co-founder of CLINTEL. This work certainly supports CLINTEL’s World Climate Declaration that “There is no climate emergency”. See which offers an opportunity to sign, joining the almost 2,000 signatories and growing (including me).

This, mind you, is not a science journal, but rather a journal of economics and sociology, but it can't be denied that the entire "climate emergency" hoo-raw is one with major economic impacts, were the activists to get their way. Life pretty much everywhere on the planet would be more expensive, less convenient, and less comfortable were the climate scolds to get everything they want — save places like China and India, where a) the governments don't seem to be buying into the "green energy" thing and b) life is already pretty crappy.

See Related: The Sky Is Falling! Summer Is Hot, So It's Time for 'Climate Calamitists' to Wail and Gnash Teeth. 

2045 Emissions Goals Require Retirement of California's Truck Fleet - But at What Cost?

There are actually some benefits to a slightly warmer climate. A warmer Earth with more CO2 would likely result in greater crop yields, not only by increasing CO2 and lengthening the growing season but by opening up new lands to agriculture; Siberia could blossom with a few degrees warmer temperature. That is not, however, the primary point.

The primary arguments in this study are not scientific but rather economic, and they are good ones; the final section reads in part:

Currently fossil fuels supply about 80% of our energy, reducing this to zero rapidly will devastate the world economy and cause widespread suffering, especially for the poor. Should we do nothing? If so, the President’s Council of Economic Advisors and the U.S. Office of Management and Budget projects that three degrees of global warming will cause a decline of <1% in U.S. GDP. Modern global warming, since 1950, has reduced GDP by <.5%, a trivial amount given that the economy has grown 800% in that time. Using IPCC scenarios, Lomborg estimates that economic growth will decline from 450% to 434% over the 21st century. Will anyone notice?

The entire paper is paywalled, sadly. But the primary points are readable and are in line with what I have been saying and writing for years: Yes, the earth's climate changes. It always has, and it always will. Yes, humans have an effect. The great herds of bison also had an effect, and back in the distant past, it's certain that dinosaur flatulence had an effect. The cycles of the Sun have an effect, and the Earth's Milankovitch cycle has an effect as well. We can't change those last two, and the ones we can change won't make enough difference to justify wrecking our safe, comfortable, prosperous technological lifestyle.

To put it more pithily: The climate panic isn't worth wrecking our economy over.

This paper, although it looks very good from what is available for us to view, isn't the be-all and end-all. It's not a magic bullet that will end the debate. It's based on economic arguments, with an eye on data over the history of the planet's climate. But it's a good argument, another arrow in the quiver of those of us who contend with the climate scolds who daily try to legislate and regulate us back to the 19th century. And that makes it worth the effort.



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