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The Green Paradox

A Supply-Side Approach to Global Warming

Hans-Werner Sinn

Publication Year: 2012

A leading economist develops a supply-side approach to fighting climate change that encourages resource owners to leave more of their fossil carbon underground.

Published by: The MIT Press


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p. 1-1

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. 2-7


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pp. vii-ix

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pp. xi-xv

To my surprise, my book Das grüne Paradoxon1 triggered an international scientific debate and a swelling flow of scholarly papers. I am glad that this updated English edition has become available. I hope that a wider international audience will now have a chance to consider the issues the book raises. The English version has been condensed and focused on topics...

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1. Why the Earth Is Getting Warmer

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pp. 1-31

Carbon dioxide (CO2 ) is a non-toxic gas. It is contained in every carbonated drink, and its sparkle feels refreshing. But it also strikes fear in us, because ever-larger amounts of it are being released into the atmosphere, accelerating the greenhouse effect. Akin to the glass panels in a greenhouse, CO2 traps sunlight and thereby...

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2. Reshaping the World’s Energy Matrix

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pp. 33-84

The scientific findings regarding climate change have alarmed people around the world, unleashing a wide-ranging debate that has had the effect of gaining an increasing number of supporters for policy measures aimed at curbing CO2 emissions through a reshaping of the world’s energy matrix. This chapter gives an overview of the amount...

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3. Table or Tank?

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pp. 85-123

Civilization developed with the help of bioenergy. When our ancestors enjoyed the heat of a fire, or when they used animal muscle power for transportation, the source of energy was plants. In many regions of the world, plants still are the dominant source of energy today. Bioenergy is nothing more than stored sunlight. In photosynthesis, plants use...

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4. The Neglected Supply Side

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pp. 125-182

The climate problem is real and not an illusion. Because the damage caused by global warming could be immense, we have to act now. Some measures are indeed being undertaken. Consuming countries have capped their CO2 emissions through the Kyoto Protocol. The European Union introduced an emissions allowance trading system. In addition, many countries...

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5. Fighting the Green Paradox

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pp. 183-233

There is no doubt that mankind has to do something against climate change. At present, as was shown in chapter 1, there is more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere than at any time in the past 800,000 years, and the record for the highest average temperature is about to be broken. Before industrialization, the average temperature was...


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pp. 235-259


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pp. 261-269

E-ISBN-13: 9780262301367
E-ISBN-10: 0262301369
Print-ISBN-13: 9780262016681
Print-ISBN-10: 0262016680

Page Count: 288
Illustrations: 36 figures, 8 tables
Publication Year: 2012