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UNFCCC Estimates On Climate Change Adaptation Too Low – Report

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LONDON -(Dow Jones)- The real cost of adaptation to climate change is likely to be at least two to three times greater than estimates made by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, leading scientists said in a report published Thursday.

The report says global costs, which the UNFCCC has estimated at between $40-$ 170 billion, will be even more when the full range of climate impacts of human activities is considered.

The underestimate threatens to weaken the outcome of the UNFCCC negotiations, which will culminate in Copenhagen with a global deal aimed at tackling climate change.

“The amount of money on the table at Copenhagen is one of the key factors that will determine whether we achieve a climate change agreement,” said Martin Parry, visiting research fellow at the Grantham Institute for Climate Change at Imperial College in London and one of the authors of the report.

He said the UNFCCC estimates were produced too quickly and didn’t include key sectors, such as energy, manufacturing, retailing, mining, tourism and ecosystems. Other sectors that were included were only partially covered.

“Just looking in depth at the sectors the UNFCCC did study, we estimate adaptation costs to be two to three times higher, and when you include the sectors the UNFCCC left out the true cost is probably much greater,” Parry said.

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-By Selina Williams, Dow Jones Newswires +44 207 842 9262; selina.williams@

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