When Nicholas Stern’s review on the economics of climate change came out in late 2006, it changed the terms of the climate debate. The warnings from scientists and environmental campaigners about the dangers posed by global warming had been growing increasingly loud, but here, for the first time, was a detailed and hard-headed examination of the economics of the subject. Stern demonstrated to many people’s satisfaction that without drastic global action to cut emissions of greenhouse gases, the world faced the risk of economic meltdown.
Now Stern has a political plan to add to his economic review: a six-point manifesto for a global deal on climate change that he says will take in both the rich and poor worlds, and exploit the power of technology and markets to reduce carbon emissions as effectively and efficiently as possible.
What are the plan’s chances of success? Alun Anderson interviewed Stern for the current issue of Prospect to find out.