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Times: Forget Climate Change


Repeating what I’ve been saying for a long time – there are better ways to spend money than a preemptive strike on global warming. The UK Times publishes an article about one of those ways.

Times Online
May 30, 2008
Mark Henderson, Science Editor, Copenhagen

‘Forget climate change, we should spend on nutrition’

Malnutrition should be the world’s major priority for aid and development, a panel of eight leading economists, including five Nobel laureates, declared yesterday.

The provision of supplements of vitamin A and zinc to children in developing countries, to prevent avoidable deficiencies that affect hundreds of millions of children, is the most cost-effective way of making the world a better place, the Copenhagen Consensus initiative has found.

Three other strategies for improving diets in poor nations were also named among the top six of 30 challenges assessed by the project, which aims to prioritise solutions to the world’s many problems according to their costs and benefits.

Efforts to control global warming by cutting greenhouse gas emissions, however, were rated at the bottom of the league table, as the economists considered the high costs of such action were not justified by the payoffs. Research into new low-carbon technologies, such as solar and nuclear fusion power, was ranked as more worthwhile, in 14th place.

Read the rest of the article at the link above.

When I saw the above summary I thought of Bjorn Lomborg, so it was interesting to note that he was behind the roundtable. Bjorn Lomborg is a very likable individual from interviews I've seen. I don't know that I agree with him on the evidence for global warming, but he seems to be very pragmatic and rational about how to approach the issue: namely, put it in perspective and evaluate it in the context of other priorities. Glad to see the panel is getting some good press. Eric Anderson

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