Morten Jødal: False Alarm by Bjørn Lomborg

SCC Volume 1.1

Book Review

Western societies are taking a u-turn. We are abandoning the basis of modern civilization, and what created the industrial revolution: cheap fossil fuels. We are running to become zero emitters of carbon dioxide, in just a few years. And what appears to be most astonishing: It´s said to cost us little. In his book False Alarm (2020), the Danish statistician Bjørn Lomborg tells a new story. He describes the Paris agreement of 2015 as climate change panic that costs us trillions, hurts the poor, and fails to fix the planet. And he is in good company. His think tank Copenhagen Consensus Center works with the best climate economists.

We therefore should be willing to listen when the best scientists tell us that the Paris agreement is the costliest international agreement ever and will do more harm than good. They state that the whole effort is based on false assumptions. Lomborg is a lukewarmer. He agrees that humans effect the climate, and we should tackle it. But he denies that there is a climate crisis. He points out that the exaggerations are endless and describes them. So, we should calm down the rhetoric, and base the politics on best knowledge. We should be willing to discuss the approach to an ever changing and variable nature: how much will it cost, does it help, and does the medicine hurt? This is what False Alarm is about.

The western societies are facing the largest economic costs in human history. The yearly expenses of the Paris agreement are heading up to 1 trillion dollars per year in 2030. But that’s only a start. Climate panic is likely to end up costing humanity hundreds of trillions of dollars, every single year. And still, that will hardly change the temperature. According to the climate models of IPCC, a fully implemented Paris agreement will reduce the temperature rise by the end of the century by an almost imperceptible 0,028o
C. Therefore, the agreement is purely symbolic.

Lomborg therefore argues that we have to prioritize We have to discuss which route to take. We have to discuss a reasonable level of taxation, as well as other precautions. We should avoid climate politics that is based on increasing bids from political parties heading to capture young voters in the next election. We need to take a deep collective breath and understand what climate change is and isn´t.

Continue reading: We must discuss the most important issues. By Morten Jødal.