Business leaders should view climate change as a business threat no different than any other, says "Risky Business," a new report on climate change released Tuesday in New York.
The report says climate change will cost billions of dollars as waterfront property is lost to rising seas, new power plants are required to meet the energy demands created by a warmer climate and lower productity for workers outdoors in hot weather.
Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, former Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin and former U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe are among those behind the report, which urges businesses to think in terms of their profits when they consider their carbon footprint.
But humans can still avoid the most costly effects of climate change if we take action quickly, the report says.
Left unchecked, the report warns that the current climate change pattern will cost an estimated $106 billion in lost coastal property by 2050 in the United States alone. Among the costs: beachfront property lost to rising sea levels and Midwestern crop yields declining by 19 percent.
In addition, the Risky Business Project report says the average American will experience 27 to 50 more days each year with temperatures topping 35 degrees. That means more power plants will be required to keep people and businesses cool, which will cost U.S. consumers an added $12 billion a year.
The report urges members of the business community to view climate change not as a political problem, but as an economic opportunity to improve their earnings.
Some information for this report comes from AP, AFP and Reuters.