Advice to the Biden administration as it seeks to account for mounting losses from storms, wildfires and other climate impacts.
One of the first executive orders US President Joe Biden signed in January began a process to revise the social cost of carbon (SCC). This metric is used in cost–benefit analyses to inform climate policy. It puts a monetary value on the harms of climate change, by tallying all future damages incurred globally from the emission of one tonne of carbon dioxide now.
Here we set out eight steps so that the US SCC can pass muster legally, guide climate policy and win trust at home and abroad. It must reflect the latest and best science and economics. All assumptions — ethical and otherwise — must be made explicit.