Yeah, and I don't think the example of the sprout maps particularly well to catastrophic risks in itself.
If the sprout grows into a giant oak tree that is literally right next to their current tree, it seems like they could easily just move to the giant oak tree. It sounds like the 'giant oak' would eventually be bigger than their current tree, meaning more space per bird, allowing for more birds. Oh and some birds eat acorns!
In this case I think black bird could be making things worse for future birds.
Worth noting that this evening (6th September) there are reports that a COVID 'firebreak' could be imposed around the time of EA Global London, which could either force the event to be cancelled entirely, or lead to other restrictions being mandated (masks, social distancing, travel). Only tentative rumours so far, but it seems plausible.
Hi Ben. I'm the Principal Analyst at SoGive. As well as offering advice, we may be willing to undertake bespoke analysis and research on specific charities or cause areas, depending on what questions you have. If this may be of value to you, please contact Sanjay
I'd also endorse the other responses to your question. If you follow-up on all the suggested articles, and do some thinking about the various questions, then you will be better placed to understand whether you actually want or need SoGive's input.
If there is plenty of funding, is it just in the wrong place? Given Ben's latest post should we be encouraging donations to the EA Infrastructure Fund (and Long-Term Future Fund) rather than the Global Health and Development Fund, which currently has over $7m available?
Thank you! This is helpful - I'm currently looking at CATF as part of my work with SoGive. The case CATF makes seems sensible and evidence-based, but given my relative lack of expertise in this area it's hard to know how they selective they are being in terms of the evidence they present. So it's useful to have an outside view.
Clean Air Task Force appear to take the position that, while renewables can dominate the production of electricity over the coming decades, we need some 'firm' clean energy to fill-in during weeks/months of low sun and wind. If we don't do this, they argue that we will need vastly more renewables, which will increase the cost and lead to issues around land use, and ultimately put at risk achieving zero carbon.
What do Johannes and John think are the strongest arguments against this line of reasoning? Or put differently, what do they think are the strongest arguments that we could indeed rely on renewables?
What are their thoughts on (yet-to-be-developed) long-duration storage technologies? How much do they think they can contribute?
If we accept CATF's line of reasoning, which firm clean energy approaches seem best? i.e. considering technical challenges around development as well as broader risks (political, local opposition, safety and health issues), should we prioritise new nuclear, gas with carbon capture and storage...or something else?
Yeah, he's not supposed to be a pleasant character, and is typically satirising some of the nastiness of the British press (both then, but still relevant even now). In another episode his interviewing technique caused Australia and Hong Kong to declare war on each other:
"Please stop cheery picking one or two points which are tangential to the actual argument"
Your argument is only based on anecdotal evidence. I'm happy to address many of your points, but if you're not actually willing to accept a significant amount of evidence as to the health benefits, I don't see why you expect us to accept your anecdotal evidence concerning jobs.
I'm happy to discuss the question of choice, though you seem to also oppose Give Directly, which precisely provides people with more choice.
I expect you to write an unnecessarily long response to this.
"It is a good question, why, if the data is flawed or dubious, should you believe that there is economic harm taking place? I would return to the point of choice. If foreigners do not have sufficient data to determine that a particular intervention would do more good than harm, I see no reason that they should have the right to override the will of the community."
We have good evidence and reason to believe that bednets reduce the incidence and burden of malaria. The big question is over the economic impact, not so much the health impact.
So it seems we can be confident we're improving health, but less confident of the impact on jobs. We have two scenarios:
(a)Without bednets/AMF: people will die and suffer from malaria and there is an uncertain impact on jobs.
(b)With bednets/AMF: fewer people will die and suffer from malaria and there is an uncertain impact on jobs.
But ok: let's consider your anecdotal evidence. Based on this, how many jobs do you think have been displaced by the existence of AMF within a given country? How many people do you realistically think need to be employed to produce the bednets needed by a country? Do you have any figures, estimates, or even guesses for the number of people employed as bednet manufacturers in any country?
If there is an absence of accurate data, why should we believe that supporting AMF destroys more jobs than it creates?
It sounds like it is (anecdotally) easy to point to some people who have been hurt by distribution of free bed nets (local producers), but if there are economic benefits from reducing malaria, then any job gains will likely be spread amongst many sectors. You won't be able to identify such job gains through anecdotal evidence.
On a side-note, there is a blog post on the AMF website from 5 years ago discussing this issue of where they buy their nets. It would be interesting to hear if anything has changed since then.
It's worth noting that AMF supplies long-lasting insecticide-treated bednets, which appear to be the most-effective type. If local producers are not producing this type, then the absence of AMF et al may lead to greater local jobs, but only in the production of bednets that aren't as good at reducing malaria.