Author, "Cool It"
The Danish statistician, a self-proclaimed "skeptical environmentalist" who has spent the past decade downplaying the risks of global warming, has long been the darling of do-nothing politicians who cite his bogus numbers to justify their inaction on climate change. The good news is that last year Lomborg finally admitted we have a problem, arguing that world leaders should invest $100 billion annually to develop clean energy. The bad news is that Lomborg still fails to grasp the urgency of the threat, blithely insisting that global warming is "not the end of the world." Instead of pushing to cap carbon pollution immediately, he continues to cite research that is a decade out of date, asserting that "global sea levels are not likely to rise more than about 20 inches by 2100." In fact, the latest research shows that sea levels will likely rise by three to six feet. Lomborg is also wrong when he claims that most polar bears aren't threatened by global warming, that the lives saved by warmer winters will outnumber the deaths caused by heat waves and drought, and that the breakup of the Larsen B Ice Shelf in Antarctica is unrelated to rising temperatures. "He's a performance artist disguised as an academic," says Howard Friel, an independent researcher who has systematically debunked Lomborg's work.