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Are There Climate Change Winners?

A rise in temperature of a few degrees could benefit colder regions by lengthening farming seasons, introducing new crops and changing immigration patters. It's a big 'could'.

What’s the Latest Development?

While global warming would prove bad for the Earth in general, colder regions of the planet could experience positive changes. New shipping routes could open across the frigid Northern Sea, making it quicker and cheaper to export oil from Russia and Norway to the rest of the world. Slightly warmer temperatures would make Canada a more attractive place to live, making it a candidate for world powerhouse given immigration changes. Northern Europe would experience longer growing seasons and higher crop yields as a result.

What’s the Big Idea?

When climate scientists speak of potential benefits to climate change, there are always large large caveats close behind. There is a great deal of uncertainty as to how much temperatures will rise and given the obviousness of losers in already warm and low-lying areas, it is hard to speak of winners. Adaptability, which is closely tied to wealth, will be a better indicator a country’s ability to prosper given rising temperatures. Adjusting to heat waves and food shortages, for example, will be essentialand difficult for poor nations.

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