Economic assessments of climate change impacts are commonly presented as the effect of a climate change associated with a doubling of the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide on the current economy. This paper is an attempt to express impact as a function of both climate change and socio- economic change. With regard to climate change, issues discussed are level versus rate of change, speed of adaptation, speed of restoration and value adjustment, and symmetry. With regard to socio economic change, agriculture, migration and the valuation of intangible losses are addressed. Uncertainty and higher order impacts are treated briefly. It is qualitatively argued and quantitatively illustrated that these issues matter a great deal for the damage profile over the next century. A damage model, based on my best guesses, is presented in the Appendix.
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This paper would not have been the same without the constructive discussions with and extensive comments of Sam Fankhauser, Reyer Gerlagh, Matthijs HisschemiSller, Huib Jansen, Steve Schneider, Pier Vellinga, Harmen Verbruggen and the participants of the Nato Advanced Research Workshop on the economics of air pollution, Wageningen, 16-18 November, 1994. I hereby express my thanks to them and to the Dutch National Research Programme: Global Air Pollution and Climate Change for partly funding this research under grant 8510855.
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