Paradoxes and challenges of sustainable development
From the document:
From an economic vantage point, climate change is perhaps the ultimate negative externality, insofar as climatechanging greenhouse gases are released into the atmosphere at no cost to economic activity. Tackling climate change therefore needs a battery of public policies to correct the market failures that cause or exacerbate it.
Climate change thus manifests and intensifies the economic, social, and environmental consequences and pressures associated with the current development style, which is why the challenges posed by climate change can be dealt with only by transitioning to a sustainable form of development. A more egalitarian and more socially cohesive society that is on a sustainable development path will be less vulnerable to climate-related and other shocks and will be in a better position to meet mitigation targets.
The Latin American and Caribbean region is in an asymmetrical position in relation to climate change. The
region has made a historically small contribution to climate change yet it is highly vulnerable to its effects and will,
moreover, be involved in the possible solutions in several ways.
The Latin American and Caribbean region is highly vulnerable to climate change owing to its geography, climate,
socioeconomic conditions and demographic factors, and even the great sensitivity of its natural assets such as forests
and its biodiversity to climate change.
The economic costs of climate change are estimated —albeit with a high degree of uncertainty, including only some sectors and only some of the potential effects or processes of feedback or adaptation— at between 1.5% and 5% of the region’s GDP by 2050. These impacts are non-linear, uneven from one area to another and include positive effects for some periods and areas.