A top-down approach to projecting market impacts of climate change

Derek Lemoine, Sarah Kapnick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


To evaluate policies to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions, economic models require estimates of how future climate change will affect well-being. So far, nearly all estimates of the economic impacts of future warming have been developed by combining estimates of impacts in individual sectors of the economy. Recent work has used variation in warming over time and space to produce top-down estimates of how past climate and weather shocks have affected economic output. Here we propose a statistical framework for converting these top-down estimates of past economic costs of regional warming into projections of the economic cost of future global warming. Combining the latest physical climate models, socioeconomic projections, and economic estimates of past impacts, we find that future warming could raise the expected rate of economic growth in richer countries, reduce the expected rate of economic growth in poorer countries, and increase the variability of growth by increasing the climateâ ?(tm) s variability. This study suggests we should rethink the focus on global impacts and the use of deterministic frameworks for modelling impacts and policy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)51-55
Number of pages5
JournalNature Climate Change
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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