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Climate Change

Impacts of Climate Change on Washington's Economy

2010 Economic Impacts Report: Additional Analysis of the Potential Economic Costs to the State of Washington of a Business-As-Usual Approach to Climate Change: Lost Snowpack Water Storage and Bark Beetle Impacts, a report from the Program on Climate Economics, Climate Leadership Initiative, Institute for a Sustainable Environment and the University of Oregon, Dec. 30, 2010.

In February 2009, the University of Oregon issued a report by a team of university and private economists from Oregon, Washington and several other states, detailing the economic costs in Washington state of a “business as usual approach to climate change.”

The economists concluded that Washington’s families, businesses and communities are likely to incur billions of dollars of annual economic costs if Washington state and other states and nations fail to drive reductions in climate-changing greenhouse gas pollution.

The report identifies the following impacts to Washington’s economy:

  • Increased energy costs
  • Reduced salmon populations
  • Coastal and storm damage
  • Reduced food production
  • Increased wildland fire costs
  • Increased public health costs
  • Lost recreation

The 2009 economic report is built on a 2006 study of the impacts of climate change on Washington’s economy.