Matt Ridley on climate change: “the richer we get, the greener we’ll become”

In this week’s opinion piece for The Times, Matt Ridley, a prominent British journalist and member of the House of Lords, writes that the world’s climate change experts are now saying that strong growth doesn’t hurt the environment, but rather protects it.

Matt notes that there is a convergence between the 5 projections given by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), which show that by 2100 the global average income per head should have increased 13-fold to $100,000 (in 2005 dollars) compared with $7,800 today. Inequality will have also declined, because people in poor countries will have been getting rich faster than people in rich countries, as is happening now.

Asking whether the planet can “survive this sort of utopian plutocracy,” Matt shows that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has done its own projections and concludes that more trade, more innovation and more wealth make possible greater investment in low-carbon energy and smarter adaptation to climate change.

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