In 1980, the biologist Paul Ehrlich and the economist Julian Simon engaged in a famous debate. Ehrlich argued that ongoing population growth would lead to overconsumption of natural resources and a collapse in food consumption per person. Simon countered that rising scarcity creates incentives to unleash human ingenuity and address the challenge.
- Reducing the risk of climate change will require both mitigation and adaptation.
Market competition, price signals and human ingenuity will help us adapt to the climate risks we face.
Government policies that distort markets and risk have the unintended consequence of slowing innovation and climate adaptation.