Lord Stern, author of the British government-commissioned 2006 climate change review that became the reference work for politicians and green campaigners, now says he underestimated the risks, and should have been more “blunt” about the economic threat posed by rising temperatures, reports Heather Stewart and Larry Elliott at the UK Guardian. He said: “Looking back, I underestimated the risks. The planet and the atmosphere seem to be absorbing less carbon than we expected, and emissions are rising pretty strongly. Some of the effects are coming through more quickly than we thought then.” Back then, the report predicted a likely rise of 2 to 3 degrees Celsius above the longterm average; now, Stern believes we are “on track for something like four “. Had he known the way the situation would evolve, he says, “I think I would have been a bit more blunt. I would have been much more strong about the risks of a four- or five-degree rise.” He believes governments should now act forcefully to shift their economies towards less energy-intensive, more environmentally sustainable technologies, saying, “This is potentially so dangerous that we have to act strongly.”
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Nicholas Stern: ‘I got it wrong on climate change – it’s far, far worse.’ Lord Stern, author of the government-commissioned review on climate change that became the reference work for politicians and green campaigners, now says he underestimated the risks, and should have been more “blunt” about the threat posed to the economy by rising temperatures. London Observer http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2013/jan/27/nicholas-stern-climate-change-davos