Bringing science and development together through news and analysis

  • Economists call global warming efforts 'bad investment'

Shares

Investing in measures to control global warming would waste money that could be better spent on malaria, AIDS and malnutrition. That is the conclusion drawn by leading economists at a workshop held in Denmark last week. But many scientists disagree, with one climatologist calling the workshop "phoney and a distortion".

The workshop's theme was to prioritise how the industrialised world's US$50 billion aid budget should be spent. Nine participating economists, including three Nobel prize winners, ranked solutions to ten key challenges in terms of return on investment. On this basis, they rejected a global carbon tax that would halve emissions of greenhouse gases by the end of the century.

But many climatologists and environmental economists are wary, not least because the workshop was organised by controversial Danish statistician Bjørn Lomberg (author of The Skeptical Environmentalist). They consider the group's application of economic analyses to climate change to be a flawed approach.

Link to full news story in Science 

Reference: Science 304, 1429 (2004)

Republish
We encourage you to republish this article online and in print, it’s free under our creative commons attribution license, but please follow some simple guidelines:
  1. You have to credit our authors.
  2. You have to credit SciDev.Net — where possible include our logo with a link back to the original article.
  3. You can simply run the first few lines of the article and then add: “Read the full article on SciDev.Net” containing a link back to the original article.
  4. If you want to also take images published in this story you will need to confirm with the original source if you're licensed to use them.
  5. The easiest way to get the article on your site is to embed the code below.
For more information view our media page and republishing guidelines.