Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Thinking the Unthinkable in Copenhagen

The Little Mermaid

There's a good paper just published recently by the Copenhagen Consensus project, using a welfare economics analysis of climate change policy, that I'm reading during my daily commute.

I feel we should be skeptical about the dissidents as well as the panic-mongers, as Lomborg seems in parts of The Skeptical Environmentalist to be wandering into areas outside his professional competence as a statistician, particularly the science, if not the economics, behind global warming. The CC forum seems like a novel way to think about environmental policy in a forum free of vested interests. It's sponsored by those sinister people at Carlsberg and Tuborg, who may actually want global warming to happen so that we have to buy more beer, but I doubt it.

Note that his new project seems incorporate a mechanism for bringing different views into a debate. The panel evaluating the arguments is a collection of very heavy hitters, including North, Bhagwati, Schelling and others. However, the evaluators seem to be weighted towards U. of Chicago and George Mason economists. Also, it might be more credible if there were some scientific or medical experts too. However, it seems a significant improvement on what has gone before.

Peter 笔德