We live in an age of fear. Often at the top of the list, is fear of climate change. Bjorn Lomborg says one picture summarizes this age of fear. It is a girl holding a sign that says, “You’ll die of old age. I’ll die of climate change.”
The message from environmental activists and much of the media is that climate change is destroying the planet. And using the language of the apocalypse, the warning is that we have few years left before humanity will come to an end.
Bjorn Lomborg has been writing about climate change for decades. His 2001 book was The Skeptical Environmentalist: Measuring the Real State of the World. His current book is False Alarm: How Climate Change Panic Costs Us Trillions, Hurts the Poor, and Fails to Fix the Planet. He reminds us that, “Over the past 20 years, climate scientists have painstakingly increased knowledge about climate change, and we have more — and more reliable — data than ever before. But at the same time, the rhetoric that comes from commentators and the media has become increasingly irrational.”
He agrees that: “Global warming is real, but it is not the end of the world. It is a manageable problem. Yet we now live in a world where almost half the population believes that climate change will extinguish humanity.” Instead, he recommends that we “dial back on the panic, look at the science, face the economics, and address the issue rationally.”
We are told that humans are on the brink of extinction. The opposite is true. “In almost every way we can measure, life on earth is better now than it was at any time in history.” Life expectancy has more than doubled. The world is more literate. And even the planet is getting healthier.