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The Economics of Climate Change and Science of Global Warming Debate:African Perspectives

Nwaobi, Godwin (2013): The Economics of Climate Change and Science of Global Warming Debate:African Perspectives.

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Abstract

As at today, it is an indisputable fact that the climate is changing and there is a scientific consensus that the world is becoming a warmer place principally attributable to human activities. Regrettably, the physical impacts of future climate change on humans and the environment will include increasing stresses on and even collapses of ecosystems, biodiversity loss, changing timing of growing seasons, coastal erosion, and ocean acidification as well as shifting ranges for pests and diseases. Consequently, development goals are threatened by climate change with heaviest impacts on poor countries and poor people. In particular, African countries will bear the brunt of effects of climate change, even as they strive to overcome poverty and advance economic growth. For these countries, climate change threatens to deepen vulnerabilities, erode hard-won gains and seriously undermine prospects for development. Using environmental impact and sustainability applied general equilibrium model, this paper argues that climate change will negatively affect agricultural productivity in Africa. Although the obligations to mitigate and adapt to climate change (and to go green) may be costly, it can actually represent an opportunity for African economies. As latecomers, Africa has indeed an opportunity to be at the forefront of the green revolution by implementing green development strategies based on low energy –intensity, low-carbon emissions and clean technologies.

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