I've read parts of Lomborg's book, The Skeptical Environmentalist, a few years ago and he persuaded me to be skeptical about impending eco-catastrophe. Lomborg's work was inspired by Julian Simon (see The Doomslayer)
Recently, the IPCC and Al Gore were jointly awarded a Nobel Prize for their work on Global Warming. The peer reviewed work of scientists ought to be taken seriously. I was persuaded by data expert Peter Norvig (The Global Climate Change Consensus) that human activities are contributing to global warming
However, I still like Lomborg's stance. In a recent article (Perspective on Climate Change 23pp) he makes four basic points:
1. Global warming is real and man-made. This point has been made in many places, but perhaps most strongly and convincingly by the IPCC (2007a).This article contains some substantial criticism of Al Gores movie, An Inconvenient Truth, that:
2. Statements about the strong, ominous and immediate consequences of global warming are often wildly exaggerated, as I will show below.
3. We need a stronger focus on smart solutions rather than excessive if well-intentioned efforts.
4. We need – as this hearing asks for – to put global warming in perspective. Climate change is not the only issue on the global agenda, and actually one of the issues where we can do the least good first.
- it looks at heat deaths but ignores cold deaths
- grossly exaggerates sea level rises
- exaggerates the effects of global warming on hurricanes
- exaggerates the impact of global warming on malaria
Lomborg presents a cost-benefit analysis that demonstrates we would be far better off spending dollars on such issues as HIV/AIDS, malnutrition, malaria and water technology. Policies such as Kyoto and carbon tax to combat global warming are both extremely costly and relatively ineffective. When the calculations are made in the absence of media induced hype it is more cost effective to adapt to the moderate levels of human induced global warming than to try to prevent it.
Bright Future: Abundance and Progress in the 21st Century- a book by David McMullen (web site)
Progress and its Sustainability by John McCarthy
" ... we argue that the whole world can reach and maintain American standards of living with a population of even 15 billion. We also argue that maintaining material progress is the highest priority and the best way to ensure that population eventually stabilizes at a sustainable level with a standard of living above the present American level and continues to improve thereafter."