La configuración de la economía posterior al carbono

NUEVA YORK – A finales de este año se reunirán en Copenhague los representantes de las 170 naciones firmantes de la Convención Marco de las Naciones Unidas sobre el Cambio Climático para lo que esperan que será el final de las negociaciones sobre una nueva respuesta internacional al calentamiento global y el cambio climático. Si tienen éxito, el resultado principal de sus esfuerzos sería un pacto global sobre la forma de reducir los gases nocivos de efecto invernadero, en qué proporción y cuándo. El acuerdo entraría en vigor en 2012, cuando expire el actual Protocolo de Kyoto.

Las investigaciones que se han realizado en McKinsey sobre la efectividad y el costo de más de 200 mecanismos para reducir las emisiones de carbono –desde una mayor eficiencia de los automóviles hasta la energía nuclear, pasando por un mejor aislamiento en los edificios y una mejor administración forestal—indican que únicamente con acciones globales concertadas se podrán asegurar los niveles que según al comunidad científica son necesarios para evitar las consecuencias desastrosas del cambio climático. Nuestros análisis detallados, que se realizaron en 21 países y regiones en un período de dos años, sugieren que todas las regiones y sectores deben hacer la parte que les corresponde. Si esto no es suficientemente abrumador, consideremos lo siguiente: si retrasamos las acciones aunque sea algunos años, probablemente no alcanzaremos las metas que se requieren, incluso con una disminución temporal de las emisiones de carbono relacionada con la reducción de las actividades económicas a corto plazo.

Las buenas noticias son que podemos lograr lo que se necesita, tenemos la capacidad de costearlo y podemos hacerlo sin restringir el crecimiento. La última versión de la curva de costos de la disminución del carbono a nivel global identifica oportunidades para estabilizar las emisiones a niveles de 1990 para 2030, o sea, 50% por debajo de la línea que describe la tendencia que se seguiría si no se hace nada.

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