(% population) Figure 10: Results of the G1 scenario relative to the
BAU1 case in 2015, 2030 and 2050 (per cent)* * Footprint-biocapacity ratio (or biocapacity ratio): the ratio of ecological footprint over biological capacity. The biological capacity (or biocapacity) is the ability of an ecosystem to produce resources it consumes and to absorb wastes generated by humans (GFN
investments is created by the projected future of stocks of natural resources (see Box 1, based on section VI in the Technical Background Material, which presents the changes in natural resource stocks in more detail, including estimates of changes in the value of natural capital assets and adjusted net domestic product – NDP). Business-as-usual scenarios push consumption, stimulating economic growth in the short- and medium- term, thus exacerbating known historical trends of depletion of natural resources. As a consequence, in the longer-term, the decline of natural resources (e.g. fish stocks, forestland and fossil fuels) will have a negative impact on GDP (i.e. through reduced production capacity, higher energy prices and growing emissions) and results in a lower level of employment. Additional consequences may include large-scale migration driven by resource shortages (e.g. water), faster global warming and considerable biodiversity losses.
The green scenarios, by promoting investment in key ecosystem services and low-carbon development, show slightly slower economic growth in the short- to medium-term, but faster and more sustainable growth in the longer-term. In this respect, the green scenarios show more resilience, by lowering emissions, reducing dependence on volatile fuels and using natural resources more efficiently and sustainably. In other words, the green economy investment scenarios take the earth off of the collision course it is currently on with biophysical constraints. A more detailed summary of key results across sectors is presented below.
Worth noting, while BAU investments show a higher return on investment (ROI) in the short- and medium- term, green investments indicate higher economic ROI in the longer-term, outperforming BAU investments by
-48 Employment Real GDP Poverty (% population) Nutrition (caloric availability)
Figure 11: Results of the G2 scenario in 2015, 2030 and 2050 relative to BAU2 (per cent)
over 25 per cent throughout 2050-yielding, on average by 2050 over US$ 3 for each US$ invested. Also, both investments yield positive economic returns after about nine to 11 years in the green cases and seven to 9 years in BAU scenarios. More specifically, it can be observed that BAU investments will drive faster economic growth – in terms of total and per capita GDP14
– than the green
alternatives in the short-term, with only marginal difference in social improvements (poverty reduction, employment, nutrition). In the medium- to longer- term, however, the economic and social development in a green economy is expected to outperform the BAU cases. Moreover, the green scenarios always see lower negative impacts on the environment (e.g. energy intensity, emissions and footprint), which will contribute to the faster medium- to longer-term economic growth observed in green scenarios relative to BAU ones.
Results of the BAU and green scenarios indicate that global real GDP would reach between US$ 175 and US$ 199 trillion by 2050 respectively in the G1 and G2 scenarios, which exceeds the US$ 164 in the BAU1 and US$ 172 trillion in BAU2 cases, by 6 per cent and 16 per cent respectively. The average annual growth rate reaches, on average, 2.3-2.7 per cent between 2010 and 2050 in the green scenarios, although the relevant comparison is to the BAU1 and BAU2 scenarios. These latter scenarios see faster economic development in the short to medium term, with 2.3 per cent to 2.4 per cent annual growth rate between 2010 and 2050. However, GDP in the BAU1 and BAU2 scenarios in 2050 is lower than in G1 and G2, due to natural resource depletion and the higher energy costs (Figure 13). This can partly be seen in calculations of NDP adjusted for depreciation of both fossil fuel and fish stocks (see
14. Even by this limited, conventional measure, which does not represent progress nor wealth (See Box 1).