As the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issues its strongest warning yet about global warming, politicians are facing a stark scientific consensus: the average global temperature is likely to rise by at least 1.5C within 20 years, unless immediate action is taken to cut emissions.
Actually, the IPCC report says that whatever is done now the 1.5oC is baked in. Whether we believe the report is another matter but that is what it says. So, that’s a sunk cost then. No decision we make now will change that.
Our decisions – again, whether we believe or not – is what we do next? Ignoring, as a sunk cost, what is already bound to happen. And the decision must be driven by the costs of what we do against the benefits of having done so. This logic being true whatever our views of the entire subject. It is still true that sunk costs are sunk costs, also that decisions must be made upon the costs and benefits of those decisions.