The Real Climate Price Tag

The Senate debates a global warming bill this week — and its backers say it’s made to save the planet.

It is huge legislation that would cap CO2 emissions and — to fight climate change — would radically reshape the US economy and energy use.

No one thinks it’s going to pass this year. But Barack Obama and John McCain both favor something like it. Action is coming.

Critics say it will cripple the American economy — put us on a par with Haiti and Somalia. Backers say we must do it, and it won’t break the bank.

This hour, On Point: Climate crunch time, and the urgent economics of saving the planet.


Andrew Revkin, environment reporter for The New York Times, he writes the paper’s Dot Earth blog and is author of “The North Pole Was Here: Puzzles and Perils at the Top of the World.”

William Nordhaus, professor of economics, Yale University, member of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers in the Carter Administration and author of the new book “A Question of Balance: Weighing the Options on Global Warming Policies.”

Joseph Romm, senior fellow at the Center for American Progress and editor of, he was a top official at the Department of Energy in the Clinton Administration. He is author of “Hell and High Water: Global Warming–The Solution and The Politics.”

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Nov 30, 2015
United Nations climate chief Christiana Figueres, center left, Minister of the Environment of Peru and COP20 President Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, center right, and French Foreign Affairs Minister and COP 21 President Laurent Fabius, center, pose for photographers during a press visit to the COP21, Paris Climate Conference, site, in Le Bourget, north of Paris, France, Sunday, Nov. 8, 2015. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)

World leaders converge in Paris for the big climate talks. We’ll look at what it will take to get a global climate agreement.

Nov 30, 2015
Shoppers walks in front of a holiday display Sunday, Nov. 22, 2015, in San Francisco.(AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

From Black Friday to Cyber Monday and beyond, we’ll add up the dollars and trends and bargains of the 2015 holiday shopping season.

Nov 27, 2015
The punk rock band Sleater-Kinney (from L: Janet Weiss, Carrie Brownstein and Corin Tucker) (Courtesy the Band)

Feminist punk-rockers, the band Sleater-Kinney, is with us. Reunited. Hotter than ever.

Nov 27, 2015
Josh Baldonado, an administrative assistant at Brown & Brown Insurance, works at a treadmill desk in the firms offices in Carmel, Ind., Wednesday, Aug. 28, 2013. (AP)

The end of sitting at work. A new call to get up off our chairs. To stand and move! We’ll look at how that works.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Fresh Ideas For Your Thanksgiving: Recipes
Wednesday, Nov 25, 2015

Did our Thanksgiving 2016 episode make you hungry? Good news — we’ve got recipes right here.

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Karl Rove Still Won’t Get Involved In The 2016 G.O.P. Primary
Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015

Karl Rove may say he’s not endorsing or getting involved in the 2016 G.O.P. presidential primary, but that won’t stop from offering advice on how to beat Republican front runner Donald Trump.

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Roger Cohen And Barry Posen On ISIS
Monday, Nov 23, 2015

A brief, but illustrative exchange between Barry Posen and Roger Cohen during our conversation on ISIS today.

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