Thursday, 16 June 2011

Central Bank of Greece worried over Climate Change in Greece…

I found this a little amusing really. Given the situation Greece is in, one would least imagine its central bank releasing a report on climate change in Greece.

In 2009, Greece Central Bank funded a report   assessing the damages of climate change in Greece. The report was released (cannot find a copy). Bank chief George A. Provopoulos says:

First, I wish to welcome you and thank you for attending today’s event, which will present the results of an ambitious initiative undertaken by the Bank of Greece, namely a study of the economic, social and environmental impact of climate change in the case of Greece. As you all know, environmental issues are not usually a matter of concern to central banks, whose principal mission is to safeguard monetary stability. It has been my view, however, that environmental themes deserve more attention, especially in a country not accustomed to studying issues of a long-term nature.

:-) Nice bit of humor…

The initiative brought together many experts.
Its findings are:
The findings of the study document the need for Greece to shield itself from the risks of climate change and to adopt an appropriate long-term strategy. The climate changes, as they unfold, affect and will continue to affect our economy and society. However, the cost of addressing these changes is but a fraction of the cost that we would have to pay, if we allow climate change to continue unabated, without taking any preventive action. At the same time, considering that the occurrence of extreme climate events in the future cannot be excluded, policies for mitigation and adaptation should be viewed as contingency measures against such an eventuality and, as such, are advisable irrespective of the results of the cost-benefit analysis.

At first glance, the current adverse economic conjuncture appears to constrain the financing of mitigation and adaptation policies. To the extent, however, that these policies can be exploited as an opportunity for new lines of economic activity and for growth, they can be part of the strategy for an exit from the crisis. In other words, the adoption of mitigation and adaptation policies, although appearing to be hampered by the grave economic problem faced by Greece today, can in fact contribute to its solution.

The study not only demonstrated the need for action to deal with climate change, it also underscored the need to pursue research further. In this light, we, at the Bank of Greece, intend to continue with the effort of both disseminating information and contributing to research. The extremely useful study presented here today therefore marks only the starting point, the first step of an ongoing effort, which will be enriched and expanded as it proceeds. The time horizon set in this study extends well beyond the current adverse conjuncture and illustrates how firmly we believe in the future of our economy, as well as in the need to address its problems seriously.

So, along with funding for  demographics, Greece needs funds for Climate change as well….But does not have them thanks to its fiscal imprudence.

Nice bit…

ECB is pretty concerned over environment and making many changes to lower its carbon footprint…Central banks become a good choice to indulge in such reports for their independent views and lack of proper institutions which can do such reports….

Nice initiative by the Bank. Just that it is very badly timed given the economics of Greece…But then it is better to start looking at another challenge which impacts economies over a long-term and that is something which Greeks (and many others) are not good at.

by Amol Agrawal

No comments:

Post a Comment