Monday, January 10, 2005

Early warning system

I agree with Posner, we should build one:
"...[P]oor countries may not have the resources to create tsunami warning systems or take other precautionary measures that wealthy countries could afford to do. I would rephrase the point as follows: the budget for disaster prevention will depend on the competing claims on public and private funds. The more urgent those competing claims, the rationally smaller will be the budget devoted to disaster prevention..."
"...But to keep matters in perspective, although per capita incomes in the nations affected by the recent Indian Ocean tsunami are roughly 10 times less than the per capita income of the United States, the four countries principally affected--Indonesia, Thailand, India, and Sri Lanka, have an aggregate GDP of hundreds of billions of dollars. A tsunami warning system might cost only a few million dollars a year..."

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