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Climate summit math: $85 trillion to trim temps by 1 degree

While world leaders gathered at the Paris climate conference promised to curb pollution, little has been said about the cost and economic impact of such measures.

On Monday a noted Danish environmentalist testified at a congressional hearing that all the pledges taken together would have a damning effect on the worldwide economy: a cost of $1 trillion per year for the next 85 years, to yield a decrease in warming of less than 1 degree Fahrenheit.

“Global warming is a problem,” said Bjorn Lomborg, president of the Copenhagen Consensus Center, an environmental think tank. “But every catastrophe has been used as a way to bludgeon us to say we should cut carbon emissions as the only solution.”

Lomborg, the author of Cool It: The Skeptical Environmentalist’s Guide to Global Warming, testified before the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology by video from the summit in Paris.

If enacted, all the pledges made in Paris would reduce carbon emissions by 56 gigatons by 2030, a fraction of the 6,000 tons needed to reduce temperatures by just 2 degrees Fahrenheit, he added.

The United States will spend $154 billion to $308 billion per year to reduce emissions up to 28 percent in the next decade. China’s tab will be $200-$400 billion and the European Union $305-$610 billion. The world as a whole will spend up to $1.8 trillion a year, Lomborg said.

The end result would be a reduction in the sea level by 1/100th of an inch – the thickness of three sheets of paper, said committee Chairman Lamar Smith, R-Texas, quoting from an Environmental Protection Agency document.

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At least if the President's carbon-cutting plan had a chance of success we could say he had good (though misguided) intentions. But it appears that, once again, this administration is playing political games on the backs of the American taxpayers. Enough is enough. With our country $18 trillion in debt we can't afford to throw money away on ineffective climate change schemes. A Convention of States can limit the power and jurisdiction of the federal government, forcing the executive branch to adhere to the limits of power the Founders intended.

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