U.S. Businesses Could Lose Multibillions from Climate Change

By @ibtimesau on

The burgeoning climate change could cost U.S. businesses multibillions over the next 25 years, a bipartisan report released on Tuesday said.

Commissioned by the Risky Business Project, the report presented some of the following:

  • US $35 billion yearly property losses from hurricanes and other coastal storms
  • Electricity utility customers paying up to $12 billion per year, pushed by heat wave-driven demand
  • US$66 billion and US$106 billion in coastal property will likely be below sea level by 2050
  • Extremely hot days will push labour productivity of outdoor workers down by three per cent

The Risky Business Project is chaired by former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg, former treasury secretary Henry Paulson and Thomas Steyer, a former hedge fund manager.

"Every year that goes by without a comprehensive public and private sector response to climate change is a year that locks in future climate events that will have a far more devastating effect on our local, regional, and national economies," the report's authors said.

"If we act immediately, we can still avoid most of the worst impacts of climate change and significantly reduce the odds of catastrophic outcomes," Paulson said.

What's worse, the price tag could worsen hundreds of billions by 2100, or over $700 billion.

The U.S.' southeast will be affected both by sea-level rise and extreme temperatures. Additional deaths from the soaring temperatures are placed at 11,000 to 36,000 per year.

The northeast, on one hand, will be most affected by rising sea levels, costing additional damages to property of US$6 billion to US$9 billion per year.

Crop production in the Midwest will drop by 19 per cent by mid-century due to higher temperatures. It could worsen to 63 per cent by end of the century.

"It is time for all American business leaders and investors to get in the game and rise to the challenge of addressing climate change."

The report analyses impacts of climate change by region to better show how climate change affects the businesses and industries that drive each region's economy.

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