That’s up sharply from 50% in 2015. Since that time, the United States has been hit by an onslaught of extreme and deadly weather events including Hurricane Maria, massive wildfires in California and this year’s deep freeze in Texas.
That’s why economists broadly agree with what scientists have been saying for years: The costs of doing nothing are far higher than the price of breaking the world’s addiction to fossil fuels. About two-thirds of the NYU survey respondents said the benefits of reaching net-zero emissions by mid-century are likely to outweigh the costs.
“People who spend their careers studying our economy are in widespread agreement that climate change will be expensive, potentially devastatingly so,” Peter Howard, economics director at the Institute for Policy Integrity, said in a statement.
The institute said the survey is likely the largest of its kind. The authors reached out to 2,169 economists who have published articles related to climate change in a highly-rated economic journal. Among the 738 who responded, nearly 80% reported an increase in concern about climate change.
Biden makes his climate pitch
Seventy-six percent of economists in the NYU survey expect climate change to hurt not just economic output, but the growth rate of the global economy.
At the same time, 70% of respondents say climate change will increase inequality within most countries, expanding the already-alarming gap between the richest and poorest populations.
Investors are betting on clean energy
As Washington deliberates next steps, Corporate America and Wall Street are stepping up efforts to address the climate crisis.
“Helping investors prepare their portfolios and capture investment opportunities on the path to net zero is one of our greatest responsibilities,” BlackRock CEO Larry Fink said in a statement.
“It doesn’t take a scientist to notice our clients are affected by changes in climate,” Jon Weiss, CEO of corporate and investment banking at Wells Fargo, told CNN Business earlier this month.