Tens of thousands of American lives can be saved a year by the end of this century if urgent global action is taken to tackle climate change.
That’s according to a new report by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
It examines how future impacts and damages of climate change across a number of sectors in the US can be avoided or reduced with global action.
It said: “Climate action is projected to avoid approximately 13,000 deaths in 2050 and 57,000 deaths annually in 2100 from poor air quality.”
It also suggested “hundreds of billions of dollars” could be saved.
The report compares two future scenarios: a future with global action where warming has been limited to 2℃ and a future without any action.
It then looks at the differences in health, infrastructure and ecosystem impacts under the two scenarios.
EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said: “Will the United States benefit from climate action? Absolutely. This report shows us how costly inaction will be to Americans’ health, our environment and our society.
“But more importantly, it helps us understand the magnitude of benefits to a number of sectors of the US with global climate action.”
The study found global action would cut the frequency of extreme weather events and avoid costly damages in the US.