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How Capitalism Makes Catastrophes Non-Catastrophic (Key data point for energy/climate debate)

By <a class="post-author" href="/about#aepstein">Alex Epstein</a> -- February 10, 2012

One of the greatest and most unheralded successes of industrial capitalism is making our climate eminently livable.

The mass-production of sturdy, weather-proof buildings … the universal availability of heating and air conditioning … the ability to flee the most vicious storms through modern transportation … the protection from drought through modern irrigation … the protection from disease through modern sanitation–all of these have led to a 99 percent reduction┬áin the number of climate-related deaths over the last century.

Given how obsessed America is about climate change (or some intellectuals/politicians want us to be), these facts should be well-known and incorporated into every discussion of industrial policy. Those who claim to care about a livable climate for the future should strive to understand the mechanisms by which industrial capitalism has already created the most livable climate in history.