Bill, Professor, Paul Romer discussed on PRI's The World

PRI's The World


Where's the hope in this report will I think people like Celine meal Huck, and Bangladesh who've been pushing for this one point, five degree target for a long time would say they're happy that it's still technically feasible to reach that. And also that this report that so thoroughly documents the differences in real human experience between one point five degrees and two degrees will help focus even more on that more emission. Target, which, although it would be very difficult to reach. I think that increased focus would be seen as a positive by a lot of people, the world's Caroline. Baylor, they're the winners of this year's Nobel prize, and economics are to American scholars who've made connections between climate change and economic growth. The Royal Swedish Academy of sciences said that William Nord house and Paul Romer were picked for their work on the most basic impressing economic issues of our age. Nord house is a pioneer in environmental economics. He started warning policymakers in the nineteen seventies that their economic models were failing to take the impact of climate change into account New York University professor. Paul Romer helped create the modern approach to understanding innovation and how it relates to economic growth. He joins us now from NYU stern school of business. First of all professor. Congratulations. Have you had a chance to speak it with your fellow winner, William nor douse? No, I haven't. I just wrote one of his nephew hoping that I could find out how to get in touch with Bill. It's really a terrific honor to be linked together with him is just a great scholar, exceptionally decent guy couldn't ask for a better sociation. So your work is linked to the work of Dr Nord house. How would you describe your work were both interested in not the kind of trade off that's common and economics like we can use this field to produce a little more corn or a little more wheat. What Bill and I were focused on is the huge gains that can come from discovering new things. The real source of progress for humans has been the discovery of new ideas that gives you more of both corn and we'd so that's a unifying element in what we do it. We have our own different specialisations Bill is really the one who's focusing explicitly on climate change, but very supportive that work. And I firmly persuaded that the real key to addressing the decarbonisation of the energy. System will be technological progress. And the key to policy right now should be to encourage this amazing machine for discovery. We have in the modern economy just encouraged that to go tackle this very important problem. So it sounds like your body of research looks at that discovery of new things. Part of technology. Can you talk about how that overlaps with the work of doc Nordhausen with climate change? There's a very simple model that would say something like, oh, the government supports basic scientific research by giving grants to university professors than the private economy puts that knowledge to work professors love that story because it involves the government giving money to professor. So you know they're keen on that. But the truth is that most discovery and most learning comes from the work on specific problems and the academics often come along later and clean up afterwards. Like when people started working up to us. Engines to do work. It was much later that physicists came along and invented thermodynamics to figure out what the heck are these guys doing? So it wasn't like thermodynamics led to the invention, steam engines, steam engines led to the thermodynamics. There's a real advantage to creating incentives for startups in firms to go out and try and make a business in this area. And so I think both Bill and I would recommend kind of tax on, say, carbon based energy sources. You need to use government policy to unleash this machine for discovering which is the modern economy professor. What's next for you? I went to the World Bank right after the vote on Brexit. I was the summer of twenty sixteen. Yep. Yep. That for me was up real red flag. There were many things going on there. We're still trying to understand it. Part of what was going on is there were a lot of people who basically said if the economists are for at were against it. So a whole lot of people say, it's kind of a cer- fort. We're against it, kind of us need to pay attention in fear. At what we did wrong to lose our thority is the people you could trust to.

Coming up next