Quoting Kantok, reply 720Or, more succinctly, eventually you run out of other people's money.
You don't, as long as you have enough people that are "free" to work on the problem.
The economy will only be damaged if there is:
1. a shortage of people
2. a shortage of resources.
Point 2 might be more of a problem, especially in the beginning. Later on, part of the supply problems can be alleviated by recycling.
This is completely untrue. Western economies run on the investment of capital flows which generate new projects and ultimately new capital. Basic economics shows that you are shrinking the flow of capital towards new projects and shifting it into a government bureaucracy. Even die-hard leftists generally admit that government management of capital and projects is less efficient than private sector management. They simply believe that the government projects are a necessity worth damaging the economy over.
That change in capital flow is damage to the economy in, ultimately, lost jobs, profits and eventually in whole lost projects. Even if you account for the supposed "Economic benefit" of this government bureaucracy, you will still end up with a net loss on economic output and government programs are never as efficient or productive as their backers claim when they are trying to sell the idea of those programs.
Well you can't force anyone, however ... I'm counting on the common sense of people.
At the moment, maybe it's still a bit early as there are only about 50 years' worth of detailed data (and more years of less detailed data).
Give it a couple more decades, or maybe 50 years, then the effects will become more apparent and more people will be open for change, I hope. I would prefer to start sooner, but maybe that's a bit hard for the poorer countries.
However... we in the West can start already. We've created most of the CO2 that's added to the atmosphere, we could set an example and change course towards a cleaner world. This will also slow down the CO2 buildup. The less advanced economies can catch up later, once they get a bit richer and have enough money to spend.
Do-gooderism again. Let's do something so we feel good.
Let's stipulate that the fact at the top of the Germany & Solar Power Wikipedia page is accurate and that Germany will produce 25% of its energy from solar by 2050. Let's further stipulate that the US and the rest of the EU decided to follow this shining beacon of leadership and match Germany photovoltaic for photovoltaic (which is likely impossible to do for the US, but we'll ignore that for now). Finally lets stipulate that shifting from any other energy source to solar creates a linear reduction in CO2 generation (it doesn't but for argument's sake we'll say it does).
Ignoring growth for the moment (using current day CO2 emissions by country data) that essentially means that a massively expensive and disruptive 25% shift to solar would save us.... ~8% of our current day levels. Using rough math: 1/3 of CO2 generation comes from EU & US combined. 1/3 * .25 = .083 or 8.3%.
Now, without getting into numbers and predictions of CO2 levels in 2050 we can use some deductive reasoning to see the effectiveness of this plan. The fastest growing producer of CO2 is China. Currently China's CO2 per capita sits at ~1/4 of that of the US and 1/5 to 1/4 that of the rest of the developed world. This means there is a ton of growth still to occur in China's CO2 production as Chinese energy consumption per capita catches the rest of the world. As this growth occurs, it will outpace growth from the EU and US (which have actually flatlined their CO2 production over the last few years). That means that BRIC 1/3 of global CO2 generation will grow to closer to 2/5 or 1/2 at the expense of the "Rest of the world"'s 1/3 and at the expense of the US/EU 1/3.
What's all this mean? That our 25% best-case-scenario linear reduction from getting all of the US and EU onto solar by 2050 actually nets us LESS THAN 8% decreased emissions (probably something closer than 6.25%, but that's a guess). So you are economically disadvantaging and hurting the quality of life potential for ~850 million people for a marginal decrease in CO2 production. And that's the best case scenario.
And all of this is in response to a problem that we have been repeatedly told over the last decade we have X years to solve where X is anything from 7 (Hi, Prince Charles) to 20 to 100. Even the best case you pushed above gets us no net savings (that is, there is still overall growth) and only an 8% decrease in US/EU output.
So again, I ask, what's your solution? How do you get the BRIC countries on board? I'm sorry, but "counting on the common sense of people" isn't a viable plan.