My latest in the Washington Times.
A new UN climate report reveals why this fall could be the most decisive one for the future of America.
The report, entitled “Nationally Determined Contributions Under the Paris Agreement,” assesses progress in nations’ promises to cut emissions since the 2015 Paris Climate Accord. The keyword being “promises,” not actual emissions cuts.
According to the report, even if the 197 separate national promises to cut emissions were kept, emissions would still be 16% higher in 2030 than in 2010. But of course, nations are not living up to their promises to cut emissions. So in 2030, emissions will almost certainly be much greater than just “16% higher.”
The report clearly illustrates that while politicians have been happy to promise to cut emissions, actual emissions cuts are not being undertaken. Why? Because emissions cuts are not really possible while maintaining and growing economies and standards of living.
For the past 30 years, climate alarmism has been fueled by its own propaganda. Cynical politicians, reacting to media and activist pressure, promise to cut emissions at distant points in the future. While the politicians get cheered by the media and activists for their so-called “climate ambition,” the promised cuts are so far off in the future that none of the cynical promise-makers actually have to do the expensive and politically unpopular, if not impossible work of actually cutting emissions. For today’s politicians, the climate is all gain and no pain.
But here’s the often-overlooked key to this.
More cynical than the politicians are media and activists who don’t really care about actual cuts. They simply hope the pressure on politicians to panic on climate will lead to legislation and court orders that give the activists (aka the political left) the political power they seek to gain total control of our economy and society. Since the pandemic’s beginning, these same people aimed to not waste the crisis and move seamlessly from COVID-19 lockdowns into climate lockdowns so they could remake society into their communist Utopia.
And here’s the really twisted part.
Once the left is in charge of the economy and society, emissions cuts and climate hysteria will be forgotten about since, as the last 30 years have demonstrated, it won’t be possible to have any kind of society without fossil fuels and emissions.
George Orwell captured this hypocritical evolution from revolution to totalitarianism well in Animal Farm when, in the end, the farm animals’ slogan “Four legs good. Two legs bad.” was cynically converted to: “Four legs good. Two legs better.”
Getting back to President Joe Biden’s climate plans, America is now looking down the barrel of a massive spending bill (advertised as costing $3.5 trillion but possibly really costing as much as $5.5 trillion or more). Although the spending is bad enough, the real threats are policy changes, especially for the climate.
By far, the scariest provision is the so-called “Clean Energy Performance Program” (CEPP) which represents a federal government takeover of the nation’s electricity grid.
The CEPP is a Rube Goldberg-Esque scheme worthy of the ever-goofy and blackout-prone California. It would both pay and penalize local utilities until they meet arbitrarily determined wind and solar power levels, none of which will have the slightest effect on climate or the weather. But that’s okay to Democrats as their actual goal is to gain control of and to wield power over the nation’s electricity supply, nothing else or less. The CEPP is nothing less than Critical Race Theory for electricity generation and transmission.
As Europe is demonstrating right now, the mindless push for renewables would be a disaster. In Germany and the UK, the expensive push for wind and solar power and the abandonment of coal for natural gas has pushed electricity prices to record highs amid an economy not fully recovered from the never-ending pandemic. UK factories are being shut down because of high gas prices. If the European winter is cold, high gas prices will result in more energy poverty and the existential choice for many of “heating or eating.” Europe may have to return to coal.
Mr. Biden held a “leaders” climate summit by Zoom on September 17. Only the leaders of three nations (out of the 197 that signed the Paris agreement) showed up – and none of them were the biggest emitter in the world, China.
No one is cutting emissions. No one is even showing up to talk climate with Mr. Biden. Why would we hand over the keys to our vital energy system to the (political) power-crazed just as climate alarm is failing right before our eyes?
Steve Milloy publishes JunkScience.com and is the author of “Scare Pollution: How and Why to Fix the EPA.”
September 30, 2021 at 08:22AM