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Bjorn Lomborg

Get the facts straight

30 Sep2015

Stepping up fight against domestic violence likely to pay dividends

Published by The Age Australia

The Australian government's decision to step up its fight against the scourge of domestic violence does not just make moral sense: it is underpinned by a sound economic case too. Researchers for Copenhagen Consensus recently conducted one of the first analyses of the total costs of violence worldwide, and found that gender-based violence – believed to affect around one in three women globally – has a considerably higher financial impact on society than many would think...

18 Sep2015

Trade-Offs for Global Do-Gooders

Published by Wall Street Journal

Later this week, world leaders will gather in New York at the United Nations to endorse international development goals for the next 15 years. It is the culmination of a four-year process for setting priorities to help the world’s most disadvantaged people—a process beset from the start by horse-trading, haggling and endless consultation. In a bid not to offend anyone, the new development agenda is expected to include an incredible 169 targets for investment. Giving priority to 169 things is the same as giving priority to nothing at all...

3 Aug2015

These are the four SDGs we need to agree on to help the planet

Published by The Guardian

In contrast to the MDGs, the Sustainable Development Goals include a large number of environmental targets. Bjorn Lomborg explains in The Guardian which are among the best: Cutting indoor air pollution, halving coral reef loss, taxing pollution damage from energy and phasing out fossil fuel subsidies.

22 Jul2015

The Best Ways to Fight Extreme Poverty

Published by Project Syndicate

In 1950, people in South Korea and Pakistan earned roughly the same amount of money annually. Today, the two countries are scarcely comparable. South Korean’s per capita income has grown 23-fold since then, while Pakistan has experienced only a three-fold increase. How we can help more of the world’s poorest countries emulate South Korea’s success is one of the most important questions facing the world today. Better economic outcomes mean empowering entire populations with better health, more education, longer life, and less vulnerability to challenges like natural disasters.

22 Jun2015

What Pope Francis should do to really help the poor

Published by USA Today

Pope Francis’s much-vaunted Encyclical is rightly concerned with helping the world’s poorest. Climate change will have a bigger impact on poorer people. But the real question is which policies and investments would make the biggest difference for the most vulnerable.

3 Jun2015

Fed up with UK aid being frittered away? Here are 19 things it should really be spent on...

Published by The Telegraph

David Cameron will meet fellow world leaders at the G7 conference in Germany. There he has an opportunity to quadruple the reach of British and global aid without spending an extra penny. To do so, he must convince the G7 – representing the biggest global donors – to get serious about focusing on the smartest ways to spend aid money. In short, he needs to persuade them that the United Nations’ unwieldy list of 169 proposed “Sustainable Development Goals” needs to be slashed to just 19 effective development investments, covering three broad areas: people, planet and prosperity.

14 May2015

The Honor of Being Mugged by Climate Censors

Published by Wall Street Journal

Opponents of free debate are celebrating. Last week, under pressure from some climate-change activists, the University of Western Australia canceled its contract to host a planned research center, Australia Consensus, intended to apply economic cost-benefit analysis to development projects—giving policy makers a tool to ensure their aid budgets are spent wisely. The new center in Perth was to be a collaboration with a think tank I run, Copenhagen Consensus, which for a decade has conducted similar research. Working with more than 100 economists, including seven Nobel laureates, we have...

27 Apr2015

The surprising problem that is the greatest environmental danger to women and children

Published by New York Times - Women in the World

The world’s greatest environmental threat disproportionately harms women and children, particularly in the developing world: it is indoor air pollution. The World Health Organization estimates that indoor pollution kills 4.3 million people a year, mainly because 2.8 billion people still use firewood, dung and coal for cooking and keeping warm, breathing polluted air inside their homes every day. Indoor air pollution from cooking and heating with open fires can cause harm equivalent to smoking two packs of cigarettes a day.

23 Apr2015

The Right Health Investments

Published by Project Syndicate

West Africa’s Ebola epidemic has dominated headlines for much of the last year. But, as devastating as that outbreak has been, its death toll of less than 20,000 people is dwarfed by that of preventable diseases such as AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria, which together caused more than three million deaths in 2013, hitting the world’s poorest people the hardest. This need not be the case; indeed, addressing these diseases would be an extraordinarily good investment.

17 Apr2015

It’s time to stop subsidizing fossil fuels

Published by Globe and Mail

Phasing out fossil fuel subsidies is an obvious target for the world’s next development goals. The world spends $548 billion subsidizing fossil fuels, mostly in developing countries. A disproportionate share of the subsidies goes to the middle class and the rich – after all, they are the ones who can afford a car in poor countries. Now is the time to cut fossil fuel subsidies. Thanks to plummeting oil prices, it is easier to reduce the subsidies needed to guarantee regulated consumer prices, taking off public pressure against such reforms. Cutting fossil fuel subsidies will help the...

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