Addressing Climate Change: Is there a role to be played by the IMF?

Peter S. Heller

Published: March 2007

Global climate change has moved high on the agenda of key policy makers in many industrial countries. As a “global public good,” a coordinated global response in terms of efforts at mitigation will be critically necessary. Equally, many countries will face serious economic harm in the absence of adaptation efforts. As one of the key global institutions with responsibility for global economic stability and growth, this paper argues that climate change should be on the economic surveillance agenda of the International Monetary Fund, with the focus principally on the macroeconomic implications. While the IMF’s role would be necessarily limited, the paper raises questions about the adequacy of the financing and organization of current global coordination mechanisms to address climate change.

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