A Cost/Benefit Analysis of Sustainability
Bjørn Lomborg: Global warming is real, it’s man-made, it is a problem that we need to fix. But just like we shouldn’t say it’s not happening, we shouldn’t over and say it’s going to be the end of the world. Global warming is going to be a problem. We estimate it’s going to cost about half a percentage point of the GDP of the 21st century. That’s substantial, but not the end of the world.
Question: How much do we need to invest in R&D for sustainability?
Bjørn Lomborg: We asked some of the world’s top climate economists what are the best ways to fix climate? They told us the best long-term way is by dramatically increasing investment in research and development of green energy. They said spend $100 billion or about 0.2% of global GDP, every year. That’s about 50 times than what the world spends today.
Question: What should be our top priorities when it comes to sustainability?
Bjørn Lomborg: It’s a great question, because businesses only have a limited amount of money to spend and they have to ask very clearly, "What is it we can do to attain sustainability?" Very often we go for grand gestures and stuff that looks good in the press, but in reality, we have to ask ourselves "Where do we help humans? Where do we help the future the most?" Look, for instance, if you spend your money on cutting back carbon emissions, the typical cost is at least a couple of dollars and very likely, $20 or even $100 per ton of CO2 saved. That means you very easily end up doing less good with the money you spent. Had you spent the same amount of money on some of the things where you could do immense amounts of good—for instance, clean drinking water, or sanitation, or basic health care—you can do 10 to 20 to 40 times as much good as the money you spent.
So, spend it where your business says you can do extra good. Coca Cola, for instance, is focusing on spending it on clean drinking water. That makes great sense. Of course the choices for us are very nuanced and very complex, and we’d love to do it all. But we don’t. We don’t actually fix all problems in the world. And so we got to ask ourselves, how do we want to be remembered? Spending it well—that is doing the most good we could with the money we spent—or just doing some good? I would hope that we want to do the most good possible. That includes asking, "How much do you get back if you invest in the HIV/AIDS? How much do you get if you invest it in micro-nutrient deficiencies? And how much do you get if you cut a ton of carbon emissions? "
If we can do much more good by spending it on some of the less interesting, more mundane, but ultimately much more beneficial areas, don’t we have a moral responsibility to do so?
Question: How did you arrive at your cost/benefit analysis for sustainability?
Bjørn Lomborg: We asked some of the world’s top economists to cross all different areas. Asked them to identify what are the biggest problems for the world and what are the best solutions to those problems? But not only that, also tell us how much does it cost and how much good does it do?
Now, if you say, it’s going to cost a billion, but it’ll actually do $20 billion worth of social good. The benefit/cost ration is 1 to 20; for every dollar spent, you do $20 worth of good. That’s a great investment. And it makes it very easy for us to understand how we’re spending the money to do that most good. So, these are estimates from some of the world’s top economists across the board, and they will help us make decisions on how to spend our money in the best possible way.
Question: How important are political will and consensus?
Bjørn Lomborg: Cold economic facts don’t change the world by themselves, we need political will. But I’m hoping the cold economic facts can inform that political decision so we don’t just make the easy, feel good, politically correct decisions, but we actually focus on the things were we can do immense amounts of good first.
Businesses often spend money on politically correct solutions that don’t lead to anything.
These thought leaders, founders, and entrepreneurs are propelling the kind of future we want to be a part of.
- The tech industry may be dominated by men in terms of numbers, but there are lots of brilliant women in leadership positions that are changing the landscape.
- The women on this list are founders of companies dedicated to teaching girls to code, innovators in the fields of AI, VR, and machine learning, leading tech writers and podcasters, and CEOs of companies like YouTube and Project Include.
- This list is by no means all-encompassing. There are many more influential women in tech that you should seek out and follow.
The results of this study showed depressive symptoms being highest in adolescence, declining in early adulthood and then climbing back up again into one's early 30s.
- A 2020 Michigan State University study examined the link between teen social networks and the levels of depression later in life.
- This study used data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health, specifically targeting social network data. The results showed depressive symptoms being highest in adolescence and declining in early adulthood, then climbing back up again into one's early 30s.
- There are several ways you can attempt to stay active and socially connected while battling depression, according to experts.
The study suggested that teenagers who have a smaller social circle showed higher rated of depression later on in life.
Credit: asiandelight/Shutterstock<p><a href="https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-09/msu-tsn093020.php" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">A 2020 Michigan State University study</a> examined the link between teen social networks and the levels of depression later in life. The results of this study suggested teens who have a larger number of friends in adolescent years may be less likely to suffer from depression later in life. These findings were especially prominent in women.</p><p>This study used data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health, specifically targeting social network data. This data asks students to select up to 5 male and 5 female friends and indicate how often they felt depressive symptoms. </p><p>MSU Sociology Assistant Professor Molly Copeland and lead author Christina Kamis (Sociology doctoral candidate at Duke University) published the study in the Journal of Health and Social Behavior in September. </p><p><strong>Female teenagers may struggle more with depression during their teen years but show fewer depressive symptoms later in life.</strong> </p><p>For female adolescents, popularity can lead to increased depression during their teen years. However, this ultimately may lead to lasting benefits of fewer depressive symptoms later in life. "Adolescence (is) a sensitive period of early life when structural facets of social relationships can have lasting mental health consequences," Copeland wrote, adding that "compared to boys, girls face additional risks from how others view their social position in adolescence."</p><p>Throughout this study, men showed no association between popularity and depressive symptoms, however, they did show benefits from naming more friends. As for why this is, Copeland has a theory: perhaps the expectations on young girls (compared to young boys) as well as the roles that lead to popularity can create a kind of stress and strain felt more prominently by girls than boys. </p><p>While this does create more difficult teen years for young girls, the stress and strain may lead to giving these girls a psychological skillset that benefits them later in life, allowing them to deal with stressful situations more easily.</p><p>The study also suggested that teenagers who have a smaller social circle showed higher rates of depression later on in life. </p><p><strong>Results from both men and women followed a U-shaped trajectory of depressive symptoms.</strong></p><p>The results showed depressive symptoms being highest in adolescence and declining in early adulthood, then climbing back up again into one's early 30s. This was particularly more noticeable in women, who showed a steeper decline in symptoms between the ages of 18-26, followed by a more rapid increase in symptoms in their early 30s. </p>
How to stay social while battling depression<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yNDQ1MjA3MC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYxNDMyNDY1N30.e1ULIJ5QYXh4H1SGUPUTJqYBCnX2XWp6InjPRr-2Bdw/img.jpg?width=1245&coordinates=0%2C22%2C0%2C22&height=700" id="832fd" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="b360bb24fb8d6025680bfffb52fd5982" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="depression support group illustration" />
Attending support groups, planning activities with family or even just a weekly phone call to a friend can help alleviate depression.
Credit: Mascha Tace/Shutterstock<p>Although maintaining relationships can help you cope, it can also be one of the most difficult things to do when you're experiencing depression.</p><p>As Dr. Jennifer L. Payne (an assistant professor/co-director of the Women's Mood Disorders Center at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore) <a href="https://www.everydayhealth.com/hs/major-depression/staying-socially-active-with-depression/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">tells Everyday Health</a>: "One of the common symptoms of depression is social isolation." </p><p>Payne goes on to explain that you can "soak up some energy" by simply being around other people, moving around, and staying active.</p><p><strong>Creating a daily schedule and planning activities ensures action. </strong></p><p>While it may be easy to turn down last-minute plans, it's more difficult to cancel plans you've already committed to with friends and family. While it's important not to overwhelm yourself with a packed schedule, creating a minimal daily schedule that involves seeing friends and family or doing activities that you've previously enjoyed can ensure you stay active and often makes you feel more accomplished at the end of each day. </p><p><strong>Support groups and social networking with people who understand. </strong></p><p>While depression can very easily make you feel isolated and alone, surrounding yourself with others who may be struggling with depression as well can help in multiple ways. You will have peer support from people who relate to how you're feeling plus the added benefit of being around people, which can raise your spirits. </p><p><strong>Keeping a journal (and setting goals) can help you feel accomplished. </strong></p><p>Keep a thought journal and detail certain daily or weekly goals (such as a plan to call a friend on Monday or to visit your local coffee shop for a change of scenery on Thursday). These small, achievable goals not only get you out of the house and/or interacting with others, but they also provide a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction once they are complete. </p><p><strong>Random acts of kindness, such as volunteering, will make you feel good. </strong></p><p><a href="https://bigthink.com/mind-brain/kindness-benefits-james-doty?utm_term=Autofeed&utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Twitter#Echobox=1596517476" target="_self">Being kind is good for your health</a> in many different ways. Doing something nice for others can boost your serotonin levels. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is responsible for feelings of satisfaction and well-being. Similar to exercise, kindness, and altruism can also release endorphins, creating a <a href="https://www.quietrev.com/6-science-backed-ways-being-kind-is-good-for-your-health/#:~:text=Kindness%20releases%20feel%2Dgood%20hormones&text=Doing%20nice%20things%20for%20others,as%20a%20%E2%80%9Chelper's%20high.%E2%80%9D" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">temporary sense of euphoria</a> that can help combat depressive symptoms. </p>
Researchers have just discovered the remains of a hybrid human.
90,000 years ago, a young girl lived in a cave in the Altai mountains in southern Siberia. Her life was short; she died in her early teens, but she stands at a unique point in human evolution. She is the first known hybrid of two different kinds of ancient humans: the Neanderthals and the Denisovans.
Physicists create quantum entanglement, making two distant objects behave as one.