Bjorn Lomborg has an editorial in yesterday’s L.A. Times, presenting — in extremely rudimentary form — the results of his already notorious Copenhagen Consensus. While the composition of Lomborg’s group and its specific conclusions have been harshly criticized — in particular see John Quiggin’s blog here, here, here, and here, and also this Disinfopedia entry — it’s worth saying that the enterprise itself is entirely worthy, if done properly and honestly.
It is true that aid money is not spent rationally. If it were possible to get a serious, empirical accounting of the world’s problems from a wide variety of experts and use it to rationalize and prioritize spending, every enviro should be foursquare behind it, even if some enviro priorities get bumped down the list.
Sadly, Lomborg’s enterprise bears little resemblance to that ideal.