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UN draft climate report: economic impacts
Marlowe Hood, Kelly Macnamara and Patrick Galey, Agence France-Presse
PARIS - Climate change is already taking a toll on the global economy, and forecasts predict worse to come by mid-century, according to a draft report by the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), seen exclusively by AFP.
Here are some of the report's findings on economic impacts:
- Climate-boosted extreme weather events -- cyclones, droughts, - flooding -- have already sapped both short- and long-term economic growth, especially in developing countries.
- Average global economic damage due to floods over the last several decades has averaged $50 billion (42 billion euros) to $350 billion annually, depending on methods of calculation
- In a worst-case scenario, if Earth's temperature rises four degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, global GDP could decline 10 to 23 percent compared to a world without warming
- Expected damages for 136 major coastal cities were calculated at between $1.6 trillion and $3.2 trillion by 2050 in a worst-case scenario without adaptation
- Storm surges enhanced by sea-level rise threaten more than 40 percent of coastal nuclear power plants worldwide
- Nearly 14 percent of the world's sandy beaches face severe erosion by 2050 under a moderate greenhouse gas emissions scenario
- Heat and scarce rain are adding obstacles to Africa's development path.
- Per capita GDP for Africa would have been nearly 14 percent higher over the period 1991-2010 without manmade global warming
- A decline in rainfall from 1960 to 2000 -- attributed in part to climate change -- widened the GDP gap between Africa and the rest of the developing world by 15 to 40 percent
- Adaptation costs in Africa are projected to increase tens of billions of dollars per year if global warming exceeds two degrees Celsius
- Capping global warming at 1.5 degrees Celsius rather than two degrees would increase per capita GDP five percent across nearly all African countries by mid-century, and up to 20 percent by 2100
- Rising sea levels are threatening to cause havoc across Asia-Pacific, from Bangladesh to China to Australia.
- In South Asia, water-related impacts of climate change are expected to reduce GDP up to 2.5 percent by 2050 if global warming exceeds two degrees Celsius
- Asia could experience direct losses of nearly $170 billion with half-a-meter of sea-level rise, and damages will be concentrated in China. The IPCC projects sea level rise up to 1.1 meters by 2100
- In Bangladesh, one-third of power plants may need to be relocated by 2030 due to sea-level rise
- Climate-induced loss in Australian agricultural and labor productivity could exceed $14 billion by 2030 and $159 billion by 2050
- Melting Arctic ice and other climate calamities loom large over Russia, Europe and the United States.
- Damages from multiple climate hazards to transport, energy, industry and social infrastructure in Europe could triple by 2030, and increase tenfold by 2100
- In Russia, nearly 20 percent of critical infrastructure will be damaged by degraded permafrost by 2050
- Under a worst-case emissions scenario, hundreds of billions of dollars in annual economic damages in the United States are anticipated by 2090
- By mid-century, regardless of emissions scenario, permafrost thaw across the Arctic region is projected to damage nearly 70 percent of infrastructure