Betting on Copenhagen

Emile Servan-Schreiber comments on a New York Times opinion piece:

The idea that betting could help us gain clarity on some controversial scientific questions has first been proposed by George Mason economics professor Robin Hanson in 1992 in a paper entitled &#8220-Could Gambling Save Science&#8221- and available online here:

The benefits of creating prediction markets about controversial climate-change issues in particular is further developed on Nate Silver&#8217-s blog and in this presentation given at CalTech in 2004:

Economist Brad DeLong has received a DMCA takedown notice from HarperCollins, publisher of Steve Levitt and Steve Dubners SuperFreakonomics.

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Brad DeLong has received a DMCA takedown notice from HarperCollins.

Is SuperFreakonomics author Levitt again denying the ‘unequivocal’ scientific evidence for global warming? New Yorker’s Kolbert calls book a form of “horseshit.”

One error retracted, 99 to go. Superfreaknomics authors will, in future editions, correct their claim that Caldeira believes “carbon dioxide is not the right villain”.

Ken Caldeira’s Carbon Solution

Intellectual Ventures wanna solve global warming via stratoshield.

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&#8220-Rep. Jay Inslee (D-WA) assailed the authors of SuperFreakonomics for participating in the effort to deceive the American public on the science of global warming, in particular for their &#8220-absolute deception&#8221- in their portrayal of the views of climate scientist Ken Caldeira. He criticized the book during a hearing of the House Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming investigating forged letters sent on behalf of the coal industry opposing climate legislation.&#8221-

Ocean acidification:

Geo-Engineering Planet Earth – The Super Freakonomics Solution To Global Warming

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Narrator: “Every year, more and more ice must be dumped into the ocean to cool the earth, thus solving the problem forever.&#8221-

Little Girl: &#8220-But . . .&#8221-

Narrator: &#8220-Forever!!!&#8221-

The SuperFreakonomics Global-Warming Fact Quiz

Read all the comments there.

UPDATE: Climate Progress + AP

UPDATE: Harvard Business Review

The definitive proof that FOR-PROFIT prediction exchanges (like BetFair and InTrade) are the best organizers of socially valuable prediction markets (like those on global warming and climate change).

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Last year, I said that the BetFair prediction markets on global warming would fail.

I said:

My prediction is that the first two BetFair Global Warming prediction markets (HSBC Investable Climate Change Index and ECX CFI Futures Contract) will fail miserably.

They failed, indeed. Remain only those two prediction markets, with ultra light volumes: Highest and Lowest UK Temperature.

As for the InTrade prediction markets on climate change (USA agrees before end of 2009 to reduce CO2 emissions by 10% or more by year 2025), liquidity is more than thin.

Now, ask yourself:

  • If BetFair and InTrade (which are for-profit prediction exchanges) encounter difficulties with those &#8220-socially valuable prediction markets&#8221-, why would not-for-profit prediction exchanges (like the Iowa Electronic Markets) be more successful at it?
  • Don&#8217-t you think that the American Enterprise Institute&#8217-s proposals (which would outlaw the for-profit prediction exchanges) are out of whack? I do. Let&#8217-s do something.