Romm vs. Lomborg on climate change adaptation

In the WSJ, Bjorn Lomborg thinks a "technology-led effort" featuring adaptation and geo-engineering will be more effective than high carbon taxes to reduce emissions, and he cites a number of studies supporting his position. For example
Taking a variety of natural, so-called market adaptations into account, the Carraro research shows we will acclimatize to the negative impacts of global warming and exploit the positive changes, actually creating 0.1% increase in GDP in 2100 among the member countries of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. In poor countries, market adaptation will reduce climate change-related losses to 2.9% of GDP. This remains a significant, negative effect. The real challenge of global warming lies in tackling its impact on the Third World. Yet adaptation has other positive benefits. If we prepare societies for more ferocious hurricanes in the future, we also help them to cope better with today's extreme weather.
... and...
Remarkably, Mr. Bickel finds that about $9 billion spent developing this so-called marine cloud whitening technology might be able to cancel out this century's global warming. The benefits—from preventing the temperature increase—would add up to about $20 trillion.
As I've said before, the potential unintended consequences of geo-engineering freak me out. As for adaptation, Joe Romm is scornful of the "adaptation trap":
What is the cost of “adaptation”? It is almost incalculable. The word is a virtually meaningless euphemism in the context of catastrophic global warming. That is what the deniers and delayers simply don’t understand. On our current emissions path, the country and the world faces faces multiple catastrophes, including:

  • Staggeringly high temperature rise, especially over land — some 10°F over much of the United States
  • Sea level rise of 5 feet, rising some 6 to 12 inches (or more) each decade thereafter
  • Permanent Dust Bowls over the U.S. SW and many other heavily populated regions around the globe
  • Massive species loss on land and sea — 50% or more of all life
  • Unexpected impacts — the fearsome “unknown unknowns”
  • More severe hurricanes — especially in the Gulf
He then uses Hurricane Katrina as an example of the huge challenges of adaptation (and, commendably, doesn't fall into the enticing but superficial "global warming caused Katrina" meme). He concludes:
If we won’t adapt to the realities of having one city below sea level in hurricane alley, what are the chances we are going to adapt to the realities of having all our great Gulf and Atlantic Coast cities at risk for the same fate as New Orleans — since sea level from climate change will ultimately put many cities, like Miami, below sea level?
I don't know the answer here - these are both smart guys who care passionately about finding the right solution to a major global issue. My hunch is that geo-engineering will not provide us with a simple silver bullet, and that the collective action problem will likely end up with temperatures rising and adaptation necessary to some degree. But that is not an excuse to junk all attempts to moderate our emissions by introducing a price on carbon (shorthand for all GHGs) that harnesses the power of markets as an ally. In this fight we need all the allies we can get.

Update: In a guest rebuttal at Climate Progress (cleverly titled "The Bjorn Irrelevancy"), Dr. Bill Chameides, dean of the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke, dissects Lomborg's argument and accuses him of cherry-picking only those forecasts and research results which support his point.

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