In the NewsBloombergJune 11, 2019

New Bipartisan Agreement on Climate Change Only Goes So Far

In a break from years of acrimony over basic science, House Budget Committee members on Tuesday tripped over each other to agree that climate change is not only real but caused by humans. “The last decade has seen dramatic advances in our understanding of the economic value of the climate,” said Solomon Hsiang, Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley, and co-director of the Lab, a witness invited by the panel’s Democratic majority. “Crucially, we are now able to use real-world data to quantify how changes in the climate cause changes in the economy.” Hsiang’s characterization of a stable global climate as an asset caught the attention of Representative Rob Woodall, a Republican who represents the district northeast of Atlanta. “I did not expect to come and be inspired, but I really have been,” Woodall said. “Dr. Shiang, it was your testimony about managing the climate—managing the Earth—as an asset that got me started in the right place, because I think that’s something we can agree on, up and down the ideological spectrum. We all understand managing assets.”