Links related to The Skeptical Environmentalist
For those of you who still haven’t gotten enough of the Lomborg controversy, look no further than your browser. We’ve compiled a collection of links to sites that praise the man, haze the man, and walk the middle ground.
You Gotta Love the Guy
Washington Post book review
Denis Dutton’s blurb-eriffic review of The Skeptical Environmentalist in the Washington Post reads as if it were calculated to drive a green-leaning (or even moderate) reader’s blood pressure up into the Dick Cheney range. Smitten with Lomborg’s “movie-star” looks and in awe of his 3,000 footnotes, Dutton waxes rapturous over a book he calls “the place from which environmental policy decisions must be argued.” Dutton may have found the book faultless, but Jonathan Lash, president of the World Resources Institute (whose stats are “debunked” in The Skeptical Environmentalist), finds plenty of faults with Dutton’s review in his letter to the editor.
Greening Earth Society
The Greening Earth Society, a nonprofit organization founded, funded, and housed by the Western Fuels Association, a coal-producing and -procuring electric-utility cooperative, agrees with Lomborg’s conclusions but still finds a bone to pick: GES already knew — has for ages — that global warming and all those other environmental worries were nothing but lies and exaggerations.
Bjorn Lomborg’s website
The official website for Bjorn Lomborg and The Skeptical Environmentalist is light on content, but you’ll find a few variations on the author’s sexy book jacket photo, links to book reviews and interviews, and a sample chapter.
Where it all began
Legend has it that Lomborg was a dyed-in-the-wool environmentalist until he read an interview with anti-enviro Julian Simon, set out to debunk him, and wound up confirming his claims. For those who want to go straight to the source, this is the 1997 Wired interview with Julian Simon that supposedly started Lomborg on the path to writing The Skeptical Environmentalist.
You Gotta Loathe the Guy
The anti-Lomborg website is run by “a bunch of environmental writers, academics, and activists in Oxford, England, who were mildly irritated by the publication in the Guardian newspaper of a series of ‘green wash’ articles written by Bjorn Lomborg.” Here, you’ll find a critique of the Lomborg articles that appeared last summer in the London Guardian, — and a great photo of Lomborg getting a pie in the face.
TomPaine.com, a truth-seeking online periodical known for its weekly ads on the editorial page of the New York Times, wags its finger at the media for going gaga over Lomborg. Upstanding Cambridge University Press, publisher of the The Skeptical Environmentalist, also takes a hit. Check out the related ad (with its swell mention of Grist).
World Resources Institute
For those of a green persuasion, the World Resources Institute offers up a handy kit for tackling Lomborg’s work, including “Nine things journalists should know about The Skeptical Environmentalist” (a critique by the WRI and World Wildlife Fund), as well as a similar list geared toward environmental educators, and yet another set of links (in case you still can’t get enough).
Union of Concerned Scientists
The Union of Concerned Scientists has more than a few things to say about The Skeptical Environmentalist: The organization plans to run a series of reviews by experts on water resources, biodiversity, and climate change. The first review, by Peter Gleick, takes on Lomborg’s arguments on water resources.
Replies from Danish scientists
The Skeptical Environmentalist was published in Denmark in 1998. In response, a group of Lomborg’s colleagues at the University of Aarhus assembled this collection of critiques of the book by Danish scientists (writing in English) to give readers a taste of the debate Lomborg sparked in his home country.
The Middle Path
London Guardian book review
The London Guardian helped stoke the controversy over The Skeptical Environmentalist by running a series of articles by Lomborg last summer. Some people considered those articles so outrageous that they developed a website to debunk them (see above). Following the publication of The Skeptical Environmentalist, the Guardian, perhaps chastened by its earlier experiences, ran this fairly balanced assessment. Reviewer Chris Lavers is knowledgeable and cynical, and manages to give both environmentalists and Lomborg a dressing-down.
New York Times profile
This interview with Lomborg appeared in the New York Times science section last August. While Lomborg is the feature attraction, some of the scientists whose numbers he crunches get a brief chance to respond to his claims.
More stories in this series:
Here is Denmark, that harmonious northern country known for its curiously vanilla accomplishments (comprehensive social welfare, pastry, Hans Christian Anderson), and here is its latest export, Bjorn Lomborg, come to announce the good news that we live in a fairy-tale …
When it comes to the world’s energy problems, Bjorn Lomborg’s unbridled optimism is quite enough to ruin anyone’s day.
You know what they say about people who become statisticians? They lacked the personality to become accountants.
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