Bjorn Lomborg

Get the facts straight

9 May2016

An ambitious attempt to work out the best use for scarce resources

Published by Financial Express

Every government minister, senior civil servant or charity official is familiar with the pitch. Spend money on my project, says the supplicant: it will bring such large benefits that you will actually save money in the long run. At this, the official sighs, knowing that another supplicant with an equally bold pitch is waiting outside. How can he pick among competing pleas for bridges, IT systems, deworming medicines and a thousand other things? This week, at a conference in Dhaka, the Copenhagen Consensus will try to answer that question, reports the Economist.

9 May2016

The smartest ways to deal with traffic congestion in Dhaka

Published by The Daily Star

Dhaka is one of the fastest-growing megacities in the world. A population of just 3 million in 1971 has ballooned to 18 million today. This unprecedented urban growth has resulted in a city more densely inhabited than Tokyo, Shanghai, Mumbai, or any other major city (Robert Gallagher). The capital's growth partially represents the progress of the Bangladesh economy, which has grown atover 6 percent annually (7th Five Year Plan). The city's transport system, however, hasn't kept up, and Dhaka now has some of the worst traffic congestions in the world. What are the best ways to deal...

5 May2016

No one ever says it, but in many ways global warming will be a good thing

Published by The Telegraph

ast week, a study in the prestigious journal Nature revealed just how much CO₂ increases have greened the Earth over the past three decades. Because CO₂ acts as a fertilizer, as much as half of all vegetated land is persistently greener today. This ought to be a cause for great joy. Instead, the BBC focused on warning that the paper shouldn’t make us stop worrying about global warming, with threats like melting glaciers and more severe tropical storms. Many other major news outlets did not even report on the study...

1 May2016

Education sector: The smartest investments

Published by Financial Express

It seems like a great idea: to improve education in Bangladesh, we should equip classrooms with computers, moving the next generation to the cutting edge of knowledge. But while such an idea is alluring and has gotten wide traction around the world in the last decade, we need to look at the evidence. And it is surprising. A recent OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development) study finds that over the past 10 years, there has been virtually no "appreciable improvement" in student achievement in developed countries that have invested heavily in computers and other...

30 Apr2016

Dear World Bank, poverty is more urgent than global warming

Published by The Australian

The World Bank’s self-proclaimed “new course” towards focusing on global warming over poverty reduction is an alarming development for the planet’s poorest. The planet’s biggest provider of non-private financing to developing countries will increase climate-related aid by one-third, meaning that by 2020 these efforts will amount to about $US29 billion ($38bn) a year. Every single dollar that the World Bank spends will “take account of climate change”...

27 Apr2016

The smartest ways to adapt to climate

Published by The Daily Star

Dr. Bjorn Lomborg Bangladesh is one of the most vulnerable countries in the world when it comes to climate change. Millions of citizens are already exposed to severe natural disasters like cyclones, flooding, tidal surges, heat waves, and drought, and rising sea levels are compounding the effects of the sinking Ganges River delta. Shifts in global climate will exacerbate some extreme weather and threaten even more of the vulnerable people who live in the country's coastal regions. Moreover, it is clear that poverty is one of the biggest causes of climate vulnerability, so to help we...

25 Apr2016

Digitize land records - Unlock economic opportunities

Published by The Daily Star

Land records in Bangladesh are a bit of a mess—according to the records there is more land owned than actual land exists (according to Anir Chowdhury, Adviser, Prime Minister's Office). The land administration process still follows the antiquated system that British Colonial rulers instituted, from surveys all the way to collection of property taxes. Three different ministries oversee the records system, working independently and with little coordination. If you need to access your own land record, or transfer property after a sale or an inheritance, you will have to visit multiple...

22 Apr2016

Interview with Al Jazeera

Published by Al Jazeera

Climate change is a real problem and we need to fix it but wishful thinking isn’t going to solve the problem. The Paris Treaty will have almost no effect on climate change...

22 Apr2016

Paris treaty: a lot of cost for doing very little

Published by The Hindu

Today, world leaders and their entourages will disembark from carbon-spewing jets in New York to sign the world’s costliest-ever climate change treaty. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be among them. Lit by the flashbulbs of the world’s press and warmed by their sense of accomplishment, these politicians will pat each other on the back and declare a job well done. The reality is that the so-called >“Paris Treaty” is a hugely expensive way of doing very little. The Paris Treaty talks a big game. It doesn’t just commit to >capping the global temperature...

21 Apr2016

Climate change is real, but Paris treaty won't fix it

Published by USA Today

World leaders will disembark from carbon-spewing jets in New York on Earth Day this Friday to sign the Paris climate treaty, the world’s costliest-ever accord. No doubt, American presidential candidates will use the spectacle to make hay. In line with President Obama, Hillary Clinton believes the treaty is a “historic step forward” against “one of the greatest challenges” of our age, while Bernie Sanders argues it “goes nowhere near far enough.” John Kasich has “serious concerns” the agreement will hurt the American economy; Donald Trump...