The Skeptical Environmentalist

Hey everyone!

Sorry this post is so late; I went home on Thursday for some family business and totally forgot to write. For my first post I have decided to share some thoughts on the Danish author Bjorn Lomborg. You might remember me dropping his name in the first class this semester.

Lomborg is an environmental economist who has written several books on the issue of climate change; his most well known publication is The Skeptical Environmentalist, and I am currently reading Cool It. It’s actually an interesting experience reading Lomborg’s books, because he attempts to address the same issues as the rest of us but in a totally new way, with new directions and focuses that some might find confusing and frustrating. In Cool It he picks apart the Kyoto Protocol, claiming that it is “an extraordinarily expensive way of doing very little good far into the future”. Personally, I found this claim rather shocking seeing as Kyoto is an international initiative headed by the biggest, richest, most resourceful countries and leaders. I would assume that 191 states would only sign such an agreement if it was a sure way to improve the state of the earth, or at least prove to be a step in the right direction. Lomborg looks at Kyoto in a new light, and ends up concluding that the actual amount of good (environmentally, socially, economically, etc.) it does is not worth its steep price. He proposes that the money that it would take a country to properly ratify Kyoto could be spent in other areas and achieve a higher level of social good. An interesting proposition, I thought.

All of Lomborg’s claims and suggestions are backed up facts from the IPCC, Greenpeace, WHO, and other credible sources. He also acknowledges and advocates for the fact that climate change is happening and that it is almost surely brought on by human activity. For these reasons I have come to think of him as a bright guy with new ideas that, while sometimes controversial, deserve some attention and thought. I really encourage you guys to have a look at his stuff. It gives you a new perspective, whether you like it or not!


About emmagenest

18 years old studying Environmental Governance at the University of Guelph. I love the environment, travelling, my friends, music, and the beach!
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