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YAGWT: From an Economics Perpective

Stunt

Diamond Member
Jul 17, 2002
9,717
2
0
Yes...yet another global warming thread...

I do not want to debate the concept of global warming nor the effects of man made greenhouse gas emissions. Personally I am very skeptical of the pro-global warming data, distrust the "independent" organizations against man made effects due to their ties to special interests and feel that at this point, scientists are not capable of comprehending our very complex world when it comes to temperatures, cycles, weather, etc.

The reason for this thread is to consider the economic impact (good and bad) for implementing or working towards lower emissions. While some make the case against consumerism, consumption, and capitalism; I see a potential to increase efficiency, reduce costs, raise our standard of living through reduced energy use without drastically changing our lifestyles.

The other day I ran across this article posted by the former leader of the Green Party; not a party I typically watch but the former leader was originally a conservative here in Canada but has some very interesting points that sort of make me scratch my head. I was under the impression that environmental regulation (and other regulation for that matter) for the most part reduced economic efficiency, increased costs for the consumer, and is in some way or form a burden financially on the economy.

The article I speak of is here...

It is more or less a case study on the refrigerator market in the United States over the last 50 years. The size of refrigerators has doubled, energy consumption was up 5 times as much but through regulation and standards, the consumption is about as low as it was with the refrigerators half the size. Since implementing the regulations, the cost of purchasing a refrigerator has dropped significantly (down over 60% in 1983 dollars).

Thoughts and opinions from those who know more about economics or perhaps some comments from those who are also skeptical of global warming. This is some pretty interesting information and have a tough time understanding how this is different than any other appliance or product.
 

glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,383
1,013
126
Originally posted by: Stunt
Yes...yet another global warming thread...

I do not want to debate the concept of global warming nor the effects of man made greenhouse gas emissions. Personally I am very skeptical of the pro-global warming data, distrust the "independent" organizations against man made effects due to their ties to special interests and feel that at this point, scientists are not capable of comprehending our very complex world when it comes to temperatures, cycles, weather, etc.

The reason for this thread is to consider the economic impact (good and bad) for implementing or working towards lower emissions. While some make the case against consumerism, consumption, and capitalism; I see a potential to increase efficiency, reduce costs, raise our standard of living through reduced energy use without drastically changing our lifestyles.

The other day I ran across this article posted by the former leader of the Green Party; not a party I typically watch but the former leader was originally a conservative here in Canada but has some very interesting points that sort of make me scratch my head. I was under the impression that environmental regulation (and other regulation for that matter) for the most part reduced economic efficiency, increased costs for the consumer, and is in some way or form a burden financially on the economy.

The article I speak of is here...

It is more or less a case study on the refrigerator market in the United States over the last 50 years. The size of refrigerators has doubled, energy consumption was up 5 times as much but through regulation and standards, the consumption is about as low as it was with the refrigerators half the size. Since implementing the regulations, the cost of purchasing a refrigerator has dropped significantly (down over 60% in 1983 dollars).

Thoughts and opinions from those who know more about economics or perhaps some comments from those who are also skeptical of global warming. This is some pretty interesting information and have a tough time understanding how this is different than any other appliance or product.
Let's say for sake of argument that "green technology" provides a net economic benefit. In that case, economic self-interest will ensure that this technology is adopted voluntarily by the marketplace. That these technologies have needed to be imposed via legislation means either consumers are not acting in rational self-interest, or that the predicted economic benefits are overstated (and thus consumers are making a rational economic decision not to adopt them without compulsion), or that greens simply enjoy the power trip of being able to tell other people what to do.
 

Stunt

Diamond Member
Jul 17, 2002
9,717
2
0
Originally posted by: glenn1
Originally posted by: Stunt
Yes...yet another global warming thread...

I do not want to debate the concept of global warming nor the effects of man made greenhouse gas emissions. Personally I am very skeptical of the pro-global warming data, distrust the "independent" organizations against man made effects due to their ties to special interests and feel that at this point, scientists are not capable of comprehending our very complex world when it comes to temperatures, cycles, weather, etc.

The reason for this thread is to consider the economic impact (good and bad) for implementing or working towards lower emissions. While some make the case against consumerism, consumption, and capitalism; I see a potential to increase efficiency, reduce costs, raise our standard of living through reduced energy use without drastically changing our lifestyles.

The other day I ran across this article posted by the former leader of the Green Party; not a party I typically watch but the former leader was originally a conservative here in Canada but has some very interesting points that sort of make me scratch my head. I was under the impression that environmental regulation (and other regulation for that matter) for the most part reduced economic efficiency, increased costs for the consumer, and is in some way or form a burden financially on the economy.

The article I speak of is here...

It is more or less a case study on the refrigerator market in the United States over the last 50 years. The size of refrigerators has doubled, energy consumption was up 5 times as much but through regulation and standards, the consumption is about as low as it was with the refrigerators half the size. Since implementing the regulations, the cost of purchasing a refrigerator has dropped significantly (down over 60% in 1983 dollars).

Thoughts and opinions from those who know more about economics or perhaps some comments from those who are also skeptical of global warming. This is some pretty interesting information and have a tough time understanding how this is different than any other appliance or product.
Let's say for sake of argument that "green technology" provides a net economic benefit. In that case, economic self-interest will ensure that this technology is adopted voluntarily by the marketplace. That these technologies have needed to be imposed via legislation means either consumers are not acting in rational self-interest, or that the predicted economic benefits are overstated (and thus consumers are making a rational economic decision not to adopt them without compulsion), or that greens simply enjoy the power trip of being able to tell other people what to do.
Obviously adding technology initially, will cost more to implement due to research and implementation of modified components. I disagree that the market will automatically demand these higher standards as very few people look at energy consumption as there is little (financial) incentive for any one person to upgrade to the newer technology. But with a mandate, all manufacturers are on the same playing field and the net benefit collectively shows the incentive that people will not demand on their own.
 

glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,383
1,013
126
Originally posted by: Stunt
Originally posted by: glenn1
Originally posted by: Stunt
Yes...yet another global warming thread...

I do not want to debate the concept of global warming nor the effects of man made greenhouse gas emissions. Personally I am very skeptical of the pro-global warming data, distrust the "independent" organizations against man made effects due to their ties to special interests and feel that at this point, scientists are not capable of comprehending our very complex world when it comes to temperatures, cycles, weather, etc.

The reason for this thread is to consider the economic impact (good and bad) for implementing or working towards lower emissions. While some make the case against consumerism, consumption, and capitalism; I see a potential to increase efficiency, reduce costs, raise our standard of living through reduced energy use without drastically changing our lifestyles.

The other day I ran across this article posted by the former leader of the Green Party; not a party I typically watch but the former leader was originally a conservative here in Canada but has some very interesting points that sort of make me scratch my head. I was under the impression that environmental regulation (and other regulation for that matter) for the most part reduced economic efficiency, increased costs for the consumer, and is in some way or form a burden financially on the economy.

The article I speak of is here...

It is more or less a case study on the refrigerator market in the United States over the last 50 years. The size of refrigerators has doubled, energy consumption was up 5 times as much but through regulation and standards, the consumption is about as low as it was with the refrigerators half the size. Since implementing the regulations, the cost of purchasing a refrigerator has dropped significantly (down over 60% in 1983 dollars).

Thoughts and opinions from those who know more about economics or perhaps some comments from those who are also skeptical of global warming. This is some pretty interesting information and have a tough time understanding how this is different than any other appliance or product.
Let's say for sake of argument that "green technology" provides a net economic benefit. In that case, economic self-interest will ensure that this technology is adopted voluntarily by the marketplace. That these technologies have needed to be imposed via legislation means either consumers are not acting in rational self-interest, or that the predicted economic benefits are overstated (and thus consumers are making a rational economic decision not to adopt them without compulsion), or that greens simply enjoy the power trip of being able to tell other people what to do.
Obviously adding technology initially, will cost more to implement due to research and implementation of modified components. I disagree that the market will automatically demand these higher standards as very few people look at energy consumption as there is little (financial) incentive for any one person to upgrade to the newer technology. But with a mandate, all manufacturers are on the same playing field and the net benefit collectively shows the incentive that people will not demand on their own.
Basically you're saying consumers are too stupid to know what's good for them, so you need to do their thinking for them.
 

blackangst1

Lifer
Feb 23, 2005
20,974
848
126
You mentioned consumerism. I think at first blush people think of lower emissions as less product(s) used. This, of course, is not always the case. Companies dont make money on one or two time sales. It's repeat/consumable products that make the economy roll. Ethanol, for example, produces much less energy per gal as gasoline. Therefore, although WASTE may be less, consumption is more. It definitely creates a whole new economy in corn. So I think it's important to remember green or environmentally friendly != less consumption overall, therefore creating whole new types of markets.
 

Stunt

Diamond Member
Jul 17, 2002
9,717
2
0
Originally posted by: glenn1
Originally posted by: Stunt
Originally posted by: glenn1
Originally posted by: Stunt
Yes...yet another global warming thread...

I do not want to debate the concept of global warming nor the effects of man made greenhouse gas emissions. Personally I am very skeptical of the pro-global warming data, distrust the "independent" organizations against man made effects due to their ties to special interests and feel that at this point, scientists are not capable of comprehending our very complex world when it comes to temperatures, cycles, weather, etc.

The reason for this thread is to consider the economic impact (good and bad) for implementing or working towards lower emissions. While some make the case against consumerism, consumption, and capitalism; I see a potential to increase efficiency, reduce costs, raise our standard of living through reduced energy use without drastically changing our lifestyles.

The other day I ran across this article posted by the former leader of the Green Party; not a party I typically watch but the former leader was originally a conservative here in Canada but has some very interesting points that sort of make me scratch my head. I was under the impression that environmental regulation (and other regulation for that matter) for the most part reduced economic efficiency, increased costs for the consumer, and is in some way or form a burden financially on the economy.

The article I speak of is here...

It is more or less a case study on the refrigerator market in the United States over the last 50 years. The size of refrigerators has doubled, energy consumption was up 5 times as much but through regulation and standards, the consumption is about as low as it was with the refrigerators half the size. Since implementing the regulations, the cost of purchasing a refrigerator has dropped significantly (down over 60% in 1983 dollars).

Thoughts and opinions from those who know more about economics or perhaps some comments from those who are also skeptical of global warming. This is some pretty interesting information and have a tough time understanding how this is different than any other appliance or product.
Let's say for sake of argument that "green technology" provides a net economic benefit. In that case, economic self-interest will ensure that this technology is adopted voluntarily by the marketplace. That these technologies have needed to be imposed via legislation means either consumers are not acting in rational self-interest, or that the predicted economic benefits are overstated (and thus consumers are making a rational economic decision not to adopt them without compulsion), or that greens simply enjoy the power trip of being able to tell other people what to do.
Obviously adding technology initially, will cost more to implement due to research and implementation of modified components. I disagree that the market will automatically demand these higher standards as very few people look at energy consumption as there is little (financial) incentive for any one person to upgrade to the newer technology. But with a mandate, all manufacturers are on the same playing field and the net benefit collectively shows the incentive that people will not demand on their own.
Basically you're saying consumers are too stupid to know what's good for them, so you need to do their thinking for them.
I'm saying on an individual basis the payback (or incentive) to increase the efficiency of appliances is negligible and this will not happen on its own. For example the consumer will not buy a new refrigerator at a cost of $1000+ to reduce energy consumption 5-10% (a total savings of $35 annually); this is a terrible payback. The consumer year after year will make the same decision and not demand higher efficiency units because it just isn't worth it to them long or short term; nothing will change. Small incremental changes shouldn't have a drastic impact on costs (as shown by the information provided) and since refrigerators aren't upgraded frequently, long term this will drop energy consumption drastically.

Looking at the individual it doesn't make sense to demand these sort of things but when you look at the big picture it looks very attractive. Don't get me wrong, I am all for free market capitalism and support people's decisions in products they demand, I'm just having a tough time understanding how these technology improvements would be implemented if there is little to no incentive for the individual.
 

piasabird

Lifer
Feb 6, 2002
17,168
60
91
Who has achieved better results those who signed the Kyoto Agreement or the USA? What good will signing the Kyoto agreement if over half the population of the world is exempt to it?

India and China will never adhere to such an agreement.
 

EagleKeeper

Discussion Club Moderator<br>Elite Member
Staff member
Oct 30, 2000
42,591
5
0
Originally posted by: piasabird
Who has achieved better results those who signed the Kyoto Agreement or the USA? What good will signing the Kyoto agreement if over half the population of the world is exempt to it?

India and China will never adhere to such an agreement.
I believe they were specifically exempted from it.

 

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