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Sunday, October 4, 2009

Sunday Book Review- The Skeptical Environmentalist

Here is a roundup of reviews from Bjorn Lonberg's "The Skeptical Environmentalist: Measuring the Real State of the World".
"This is one of the most valuable books on public policy - not merely on environmental policy - to have been written for the intelligent general reader in the past ten years. The Skeptical Environmentalist is a triumph." The Economist

"...a superbly documented and readable book." Wall Street Journal

"...it is a surprise to meet someone who calls himself an environmentalist but who asserts that things are getting better....Strange to say, the author of this happy thesis is not a steely-eyed economist at a conservative Washington think tank but a vegetarian, backpack-toting academic who was a member of Greenpeace for four years....The primary target of the books, a substantial work of analysis with almost 3.000 footnotes, are statements made by environemtal organizations like the Worldwatch Institute, the World Wildlife Fund and Greenpeace. He refers to the persistently gloomy fate from these groups as the Litany, a collection of statements that he argues are exaggerations or outright myths." Science of the Times/New York Times

"The Skeptical Environmentalist should be read by every environmentalist, so that the appalling errors of fact the environmental movement has made in the past are not repeated. A brilliant and powerful book." Matt Ridley, Author of Genome

"Lomborg pulls off the remarkable feat of welding the techno-optimism of the Internet age with a lefty's concern for the fate of the planet." Rolling Stone


  1. Here is another review of the book published in the January 2002 issue of Scientific American published the feature "Misleading Math about the Earth," There are many more reviews then the three above... Why not a balanced list of reviews instead of cherry picking positive ones?

  2. 1) I really didn't think the Al Gore propagandists needed another outlet.
    2) I pulled the reviews unedited from the Amazon.com reviews section.
    3) I like the book. It's an important read for people who've only been getting one side of the debate. I had no interest in reviews from people who only want one side of the debate.

    If you think a negative review provides good information, post it here.

  3. Besides, the Economist, Rolling Stone, and the New York Times are hardly right-wing outlets. Their point is that the book is well-written, and take a fresh look at an important topic. They don't have to agree with it.

    Your link to Scientific American didn't come through. Here it is:


    It's not really a book review. It's a bunch of global warming scientists disputing Lomberg's claims. And it's gated, so you can't read the whole thing without paying for it. I try to link to free reviews whenever possible.

    Here's Lomberg's reply: