This is rarely said openly, but needs to be.

Yes, climate change is a serious problem; yes, we should address it; but beware of easy solutions and feel-good measures like carbon neutrality that are more than likely scams than serious measures, since they more often than not pay people to do things they would already have done.

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.

Also, beware of solutions that say that climate change policy is win-win-win, good for jobs, business, and the environment. This may very well be true in the long-run, but not in the short-run. There will be pain and major transitional costs, and many of these costs will likely fall disproportionately on the poor.

All of these issues need to be seriously addressed because what we’re seeing so far — ethanol subsidies leading to massive deforestation and rising food prices as well as poorly conceived carbon trading policies in the EU that have led to increased CO2 emissions — demonstrate that climate change policy is by no means unambiguously good.

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.

P.S. For a similar take by a conservative economist in the Weekly Standard, check this.