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'Greater and more inclusive prosperity': Experts say this business sector could be worth over $10 trillion by 2050

"The transition to a carbon-neutral global economy also presents compelling opportunities."

Arup report, green industries

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In January, Reuters reported that green industries could be adding $10.3 trillion to the world economy within just a few decades — by the year 2050. 

This figure, about 5% of the expected worldwide GDP, is based on a recent report by Arup, a consulting company focused on eco-friendly development, and global economic forecasting company Oxford Economics. The group's analysis looked at "emerging new markets for carbon-neutral goods and services that help reach the Paris Agreement net-zero target," according to Portala.

The Paris Agreement, an international treaty created in 2015, requires participating countries to reduce their production of heat-trapping gases that are warming up the Earth. According to Adrian Cooper, Chief Executive of Oxford Economics, it's going to be expensive, but the upside is also massive. 

"The transition to a carbon-neutral global economy also presents compelling opportunities," Cooper told Arup.

As governments and corporations across the world pay more attention to their impact on the environment, individuals will benefit from the decrease in toxic air pollution and may see a drop in electricity costs as providers switch to more affordable energy sources like wind and solar. 

Electric cars should continue to increase in popularity, especially as prices sink and federal subsidies rise. And of course, putting a cap on increasing temperatures worldwide could also help curb extreme weather events like storms and floods that are fueled by a hotter climate.

But according to Oxford Economics, there are financial benefits as well as environmental ones. 

"A scenario analysis by Oxford Economics suggested a failure to act could damage global GDP by around 5% by 2050. In 2021, it said the cost of weather-related interruptions to economic activity had already reached $233 billion," reports Portala

On the other hand, if the world continues to go green, "resulting disruptions will create new competitive opportunities for companies able to adapt quickly to changing demands," which will, in turn, create new investment opportunities.

Brice Richard, the global strategy Skills leader at Arup, sums up the report's findings neatly:

"We believe human ambition can be another critical driver of environmental action," he writes. "This report shows the green transition is not a burden on the global economy, but a substantial opportunity to bring about a greater and more inclusive prosperity."

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