Ideas to Action:

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Views from the Center

CGD experts offer ideas and analysis to improve international development policy. Also check out our Global Health blog and US Development Policy blog.

 

Lost in Translation: How to Transform Good Intentions into Poor Policy and Ensure a Climate Crisis (A Primer by the World Bank)

Three months ago, the finance ministers of the U.S., UK, and Japan introduced a Clean Technology Fund to be administered by the World Bank in an effort to "help developing countries bridge the gap between dirty and clean technology."1 Smart and strategic use of limited clean technology financing is absolutely critical if we are to avoid catastrophic climate change.

Trade Policy for a New Deal on Hunger

This is a joint post with Arvind Subramanian

In a Q&A published today, CGD non-resident fellow Peter Timmer estimates that soaring global food prices and panicky starve-thy-neighbor rice export restrictions in Asia could lead to 10 million or more premature deaths in the region if the current high prices are passed along to poor rice consumers.

Biofuels Worsening Hunger and Global Warming--So Yank the Subsidies!

Policymakers in the U.S. and European Union have responded to rising oil prices, instability in the Middle East, and concerns about climate change by promoting biofuels as an alternative to petroleum-based gasoline and diesel. But biofuels are now getting much of the blame for soaring food prices and questions are being raised about the purported environmental benefits. As shown in the chart, US production of corn-based ethanol surged over the past two years, coinciding with the run-up in food prices.

The Global Food Crisis: Time for Action, Not Panic

The New York Times yesterday (and Paul Krugman earlier in the week) called on rich countries to "step up to the plate" in confronting the food crisis in developing countries -- in the short run by increasing their donations of food aid. and in the medium run by getting rid of economically inefficient, inequitable, and environmentally unsound subsidies for biofuels, especially corn-based ethanol.

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