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Tackling climate change will boost economic growth, OECD says

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Uriel Sinai | Getty Images

A new report from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) says that the integration of measures to fight climate change into economic policy will aid economic growth, both in the medium and long term.

The report – Investing in Climate, Investing in Growth – stated that "strong fiscal and structural reform combined with coherent climate policy" would help governments generate growth that would both lessen the risks of climate change and provide "near-term economic, employment and health benefits."

In a statement on Tuesday, the OECD added that bringing together growth and climate agendas could add one percent to "average economic output" in G20 nations by the year 2021, and boost output in 2050 by as much as 2.8 percent.

The OECD's report estimated that, on average, $6.3 trillion of investment in infrastructure would be needed every year between 2016 and 2030 to meet development needs.

It added that an extra $0.6 trillion per year would be needed to make such investments climate compatible, "a relatively small increase considering the short and long term gains in terms of growth, productivity and well-being."

"Far from being a dampener on growth, integrating climate action into growth policies can have a positive economic impact," OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría said. "There is no economic excuse for not acting on climate change, and the urgency to act is high," he added.