16 Sep 2013

Anything but water

Did this glacier shrink due to humans?
  1. What happens to "promising" start ups? Most fail -- as they should. Semi-related: how our valuation of children has changed

  2. Coyote deconstructs a biased article (on train traffic) by a journalist. Fail

  3. Although there's lots of evidence that climate change is melting glaciers at a faster pace than before, there's also some confusions as to the "natural" vs. anthropogenic rate of advance and retreat of glaciers. Recent research claims that the Industrial Revolution was shrinking glaciers (via soot on the ice) as far back as 1860.

  4. The "true material" cost of development is much higher because earlier estimates counted raw materials that were traded and forgot (!) those that originated within a country. This result matters most in places where raw materials are supplied below cost as a means of increasing exports (e.g., China, Russia)

  5. I participated in the quarterly survey of economics bloggers [pdf], which revealed that "we" don't think the economy is going anywhere fast or that the government is that competent.** The interesting questions related to micro issues (read the survey*), and here's mine:

    I welcome their replies, but note that they already blog. I reckon that 80 percent of academics do NOT participate in public debates, which is a pity.

* Many more bloggers answered math or physics than biology to "what science affected your understanding of economics?" That answer worries me, since people do not behave in patterns that match physics.

** Addendum: Here's a survey of what environmental and resource academics think about markets, policies and the environment. (They do worry about water issues.)