I will admit that anytime I enter the world of global warming debate I always do so carefully as there is no shortage of conflicting information out there. I just finished reading Bjørn Lomborg’s new book “Cool It” which is subtitled The Skeptical Environmentalist’s Guide to Global Warming and I would highly recommend it.
Lomborg though is not a new comer to this subject. In contrast to other prominent figures that promote a single issue while ignoring all other views, Lomborg has been called the “the best-informed and most humane advocate for environmental change in the world today – (Michael Crichton). I thought his writings are informative as they are fact based (nearly 1/3rd of the book has references to his sources). He evaluates each major discussion point in the global warming dialog, clearly identifies the problems we face, ranks them, and then determines how best, and in what order, they should be addressed. His prior efforts are impressive including The Skeptical Environmentalist, Global Crises, Global Solutions and How to Spend $50 Billion to Make the World a Better Place.
In Cool It, he provides an overview of the global warming debate from an objective source. Yes, he is only interested in real problems, and demonstrates little patience with media fear-mongering. For example, he begins talking about the myth of the endangered polar bears, those poor creatures that are supposedly suffering because their ice areas are melting. In fact, Lomborg notes that of the 13 polar bear populations in Canada, 11 of them are actually growing, not shrinking. Then citing sources from Al Gore to the World Wildlife Fund he then demonstrates that polar bear populations have actually increased five fold since the 1960s. He then reveals that in the specific area most noted by global warming alarmists, more polar bears died from hunting than from warming related affects.
But Lomborg doesn’t stop there. He then covers the concerns we hear so much about: higher temperatures, heat deaths, species extinctions, the cost of cutting carbon, the technology to do it.
You should note that Lomborg acknowledges there is climate change underway. But his fact-based approach using economic analysis, leads him again and again to a very different results than other scientists. Clearly Lomborg does embrace many concerns about the planet. He just contrasts the concern for climate with other more significant societal issues such as HIV/AIDS, malnutrition, and providing clean water to the world.
I would love to see what he thinks of the Yellow Pages environmental efforts. He would be a great speaker for an industry event.
One of the publishers that has most proactive in trying to improve its environment image in the marketplace has been the Yell Group (parent of Yellow Book) in the UK.
You will constantly see little notes about recycling contests (example), discussions of how they are working with local governments (full corporate responsibility report), and even a page to help consumer find the nearest recycling points.
It is a great example that publishers do care about the world we all live in…
Private Clubs Magazine (http://www.privateclubs.com/) reports that sports apparel maker Izod has added anew twist to golfers — shirts using “…lightweight, comfortable fibers and yarns made from recycled coconut shells…” (www.izodg.com)
Aren’t we getting a bit ridiculous about the extent to which we are trying to be green??