Political Cleavages and Changing Exposure to Global Warming
Why do some countries and cities pass laws to curtail emissions that cause climate change while others do not? Prevailing explanations focused on collective action and distributive politics assume all actors face costs from global warming, yet this is at odds with research that finds considerable heterogeneity in climate change’s economic effects. Milner amends the standard distributive theory by developing a richer set of preferences derived from a spatial climate change economic assessment model. She will provide evidence that in response to climate disasters, countries and cities are more likely to enact mitigation policies if they face damages but not if they are uncertain or expect potential net gains. Looking at the geospatial effects of climate change, Milner points out a growing cleavage between the countries and cities of the global North and those of the global South.