Tag Archive for: environment

If Climate Change Is a Dire Threat, Why Is No One Talking about Nuclear Power?

A common (legitimate) concern with nuclear is unhealthy radiation, its usage actually emits less radiation than the burning of coal.


There is a deafening silence surrounding nuclear energy. Yet, if you are to believe the current climate alarmism on display, the world’s future is hanging by a thread. Indeed, the forceful climate marches in London last week, the Greta Thunberg-ization of the world’s youth, and David Attenborough’s new Netflix documentary are all symptoms of a growing call to arms. According to them, climate change is real and impending, and, in young Greta’s words, they “want you to panic.”

The situation appears dire. Yet, assuming it is, there seems to be a gap in reasoning. Politicians like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are calling for a “Green New Deal,” which would seek to remove America’s carbon footprint by 2030 by “upgrading” every single one of the 136 million houses in America, completely overhauling the nation’s transport infrastructure (both public and private), and somehow simultaneously guaranteeing universal health care, access to healthy food, and economic security—without any consideration of cost. In other words, a complete pie-in-the-sky scheme that is more concerned with virtue-signaling than with pragmatic reality.

But if these people truly care about the environment and the damage being caused by climate change, why is no one talking about nuclear?

Nuclear is fully carbon-free and therefore a “clean” energy source in carbon terms. This is crucial considering the primary villain of climate change is CO2; switching to nuclear would directly cut out carbon emissions and thus represent a significant step forward, except for the construction phase (which would create a one-off nominal carbon debt about equal to that of solar farms). It has successfully contributed to decarbonizing public transport in countries such as Japan, France, and Sweden.

It is also often overlooked that nuclear is the safest way to generate reliable electricity (and far safer than coal or gas) despite Frankenstein-esque visions of nuclear meltdowns à la Chernobyl, which are ridiculously exaggerated and exceedingly rare.

Nuclear is also incredibly reliable, with an average capacity of 92.3 percent, meaning it is fully operational more than 330 days a year, which is drastically more reliable than both wind and solar—combined.

Finally, whereas a common (legitimate) concern with nuclear is that it creates unhealthy radiation, its usage actually emits less radiation than, for example, the burning of coal. Moreover, the problem posed by waste is more psychological and political nowadays than it is technological. Despite the Simpsons-inspired image of green, murky water, nuclear waste is, in fact, merely a collection of old steel rods; the nuclear waste produced in America over the last 60 years could all fit into a single medium-sized Walmart. Furthermore, it is not only securely stored in concrete-and-steel casks in the middle of deserts, but it also loses radiation over time and can actually be recycled to extend the life of nuclear production by centuries.

There are explicit success stories that attest to the power of nuclear. France and Sweden, which have some of the lowest per capita carbon emissions in the developed world, both rely heavily on nuclear (72 percent and 42 percent, respectively) rather than on wind or solar power. France generated 88 percent of its electricity total from zero-carbon sources, and Sweden got an even more impressive 95 percent. At the same time, these countries have some of the lowest energy prices in Europe, whereas renewable-heavy countries such as Germany and Denmark have the two highest energy prices on the continent—without much carbon reduction to show for it relative to France and Sweden.

So why, if people such as Ms. Ocasio-Cortez care as much about the climate as they claim to, are they seemingly so blindly attracted to over-ambitious, unrealistic proposals? Indeed, a near-utopiazation of renewables fails to take into account many of the issues associated with these while neglecting the advantages of nuclear.

Renewable energy isn’t always reliable, as mentioned (which makes sense when you consider the fact that the sun doesn’t always shine, and the wind doesn’t always blow). When the reliability of these renewables falters (wind turbines only provide energy 34.5 percent of the time, and solar panels an even lower 25.1 percent), expensive and carbon-heavy stop-gap measures act as backup.

There are also ecological problems. Wind and solar farms require tremendous amounts of wildlife-cleared land and are often protested by local conservationists. Electricity from solar panels on individual homes, on the other hand, a plan AOC apparently endorses, is twice as expensive, thus making it unaffordable for many American households. Though the debate rages, there is also a case to be made for the fact that wind turbines represent serious hazards to rare and threatened birds such as eagles and other birds of prey. They also threaten marine wildlife such as porpoises and coral reefs.

When compared more directly with various forms of renewable energy, the narrative also skews in nuclear’s favor. Solar farms require 450 times more land than do nuclear power plants; nuclear plants require far fewer materials for production than solar, wind, hydro, or geothermal; and solar produces up to 300 times more hazardous waste per terawatt-hour of energy than nuclear.

Yet the issues aren’t merely technological and ecological. Indeed, there is an argument that renewables such as solar and wind will become more and more efficient and cheaper over time, which is certainly true (though some experts dispute the net validity of this claim). A different problem, however, is that the context within which they are promoted, such as the “Green New Deal,” often translates into economic madness (the GND would cost up to $90 trillion according to some). It is striking how the Green New Deal encapsulates not only climate change but also health care, jobs, and housing.

Indeed, it goes much further than simply combating the issues facing our environment, incorporating a much wider agenda of socio-economic transformation. And this is why some, such as Michael Shellenberger (president of Environmental Progress—a pro-nuclear, climate change NGO), argue that left-wing politicians in the mold of Ms. Ocasio-Cortez idealize renewables: they provide an environmentalist façade for increased government intervention in areas far beyond the climate.

Of course, nuclear isn’t perfect; it is still very expensive (though this is increasingly solvable through more standardization and long-termism), the risk of Fukushima-like disasters will probably always exist, and the localized environmental impacts are concerns to be addressed. Most importantly, the political will is still lacking.

Despite the fact that the public and private sectors spent a combined $2 trillion between 2007 and 2016 on solar and wind power, solar energy still only accounted for 1.3 percent, and wind power 3.9 percent, of the world’s electricity generation in 2016. Operating at a scale of 94 times more in federal subsidies in America for renewables than for nuclear, this looks like an unsustainable trend. Imagine if it had been invested in nuclear instead.

Rather, the Ocasio-Cortezes of the world, who are by far the most vociferous when it comes to climate change, should put money where their mouths are. Though this article is far from exhaustive and was unable to account for all the nuances and intricacies of environmental and energy policy, it seems that, at the very least, nuclear deserves a spot at the table if we are serious about saving our planet.

AUTHOR

Christopher Barnard

Christopher Barnard is the Head of Campaigning & Events for Students For Liberty UK, as well as a final-year Politics & International Relations student at the University of Kent. He tweets at @ChrisBarnardDL.

EDITORS NOTE: This FEE column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Supreme Court Delivers Massive Blow To Biden’s Climate Agenda

The Supreme Court delivered a massive blow to the Biden administration’s climate change plan Thursday, severely limiting the power of federal agencies.

The Court, in a 6-3 decision, limited the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) authority to regulate greenhouse gases from power plants, significantly curtailing the power of the federal agency. The decision restricts the agency to regulating individual power plants and not the entire power sector.

“Congress did not grant EPA in Section 111(d) of the Clean Air Act the authority to devise emissions caps based on the generation shifting approach the Agency took in the Clean Power Plan,” Justice Roberts wrote in the majority opinion.

The case stems from an Obama-era EPA climate rule and addresses the scope of Congress’s ability to delegate legislative authority to executive agencies.

In August 2015, the EPA adopted the Clean Power Plan that sought to cut carbon emissions by 32% from power plants by 2030.

However, in early 2016, the Supreme Court blocked the plan’s implementation in a 5-4 vote. Plaintiffs successfully argued that the EPA had exceeded its congressional mandate under the 1970 Clean Air Act, which broadly authorizes the agency to issue the “best system of emission reduction.”

The Trump administration repealed the Clean Power Plan and created the Affordable Clean Energy Rule, which included looser restrictions and allowed states to regulate their standards.

“Unlike the Clean Power Plan, ACE adheres to the Clean Air Act and gives states the regulatory certainty they need to continue to reduce emissions and provide a dependable, diverse supply of electricity that all Americans can afford,” former EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler said in a statement at the time.

Hillsdale College Associate Professor of Politics Joseph Postell said the case has to do with the EPA’s authority to regulate major sources of air pollution that are stationary, like smokestacks.

“Does the statute allow the Obama administration to force the state of West Virginia to put more clean power into its energy grid as a means of reducing carbon emissions or does the Clean Air Act force the states to implement technology controls at the actual existing plants?” Postell said.

Postell said the new Trump rules regulated only the existing sources of air pollution rather than requiring new energy generation from sources like wind and solar.

“The Trump administration basically advanced version of what is now known as the major questions doctrine,” Postell said. “When there is a question of major importance or a major question. It has to be resolved by Congress and cannot be kicked over to the agency.”

In 2021, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia vacated everything the day before Biden’s inauguration, according to SCOTUSblog. While the Biden Administration could reinstate the Clean Power Plan, it has instead chosen to draft alternate power plant emissions rules.

The Biden Administration was awaiting the Supreme Court’s ruling before releasing its plan, the Washington Post reported.

Following the repeal, West Virginia led a coalition of 20 other Republican-led states and coal companies to file an appeal to ask the Supreme Court to challenge the appeals court decision.

The plaintiffs argued that the appeals court wrongly grants “an agency unbridled power—functionally ‘no limits’—to decide whether and how to decarbonize almost any sector of the economy.” They asked the Supreme Court to preemptively intervene before the EPA issues additional emissions reduction plans or rules using this authority.

Click here to read the full decision: Supreme Court — West Virginia vs EPA

AUTHOR

JOSH HYPES

Contributor. 

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

Recent Energy and Environmental News

Three brief overviews about the US elections, so far:

  1. Due likely to God’s intercession, Republicans did FAR better than the media and  pollsters were projecting,
  2. Since the US voting public did not sufficiently cooperate with the plans of the Left, there appears to be a significant amount of shenanigans to keep the President from being reelected, and
  3. It’s now mostly in the hands of lawyers and judges.

If you’ve witnessed election fraud or manipulation, fill out this report

If you’ve witnessed election fraud or manipulation, call these numbers

We have one objective regarding the 2020 US election:

that every legal vote, and only legal votes, are counted.

Here is a cross-section of sample articles that explain some of the details of what is going on:

US National Elections (General):

Statement from the President

The Fight is Now

9 Constructive Things to do Regarding the Election

A Nation Counting on Integrity

A Prayer for the United States

Call in the Quants

Updated: Election Day!

The Ascendancy Of The Basket Cases — 2020 Edition

True The Vote Organization

US National Elections (Politics):

The Horrors That Await if They Get Away With Stealing the Election

Dennis Prager video: The Election – A Divided Nation

The Triumph and Tragedy of Trump

Taking a Closer Look at ‘Fact-Free Journalism’

America is at a tipping point!

Scholars and Writers for Trump

There are myriad reasons why I voted for Donald Trump

A Plea to My Evangelical Friends Supporting Biden

Senior ABC News Reporter Reveals Bosses Spikes Important News

The Fall of the House of Pelosi

Harris accused of promoting Marxism with video on ‘equality vs. equity’

Short video: Do You Understand the Electoral College?

US National Elections — Likely Corruption (General):

Trump’s legal team responds after race is called for Biden

Fractional Magick

Intelligence Expert Claims 2020 Election was a ‘Sophisticated Sting Operation’

How the most important election in our lifetime was rigged

Democrats are to Blame for Post-Election Hanky-Panky

Video: Sidney Powell re Voter Fraud

And you thought elections were decided by The People?

Votes Changed in Pre-Election Counting Connected to Hammer and Scorecard?

Short video: Steve Bannon “Trump Won the Election”

Short video: Voter Fraud Exposed — Computer Program Hacking

Video: Election Fraud Is a ‘Time-Honored Tradition’ in Dem Cities

Did a Computer Glitch Switch 2.3 million Trump Votes to Biden?

US National Elections — Likely Corruption (State Specific):

America or “Banana Republic”?

USA 2020: Looks like a coup, smells like a coup…

Why Does Biden Have Many More Votes Than Democrat Senators In Swing States?

Two Statistical Curiosities that Allowed Biden to Pull Ahead in PA

Stealing Pennsylvania

Yes, Democrats Are Trying to Steal the Election In Michigan, Wisc, and PA

Wisconsin Voter Irregularity = Likely Fraud

Massive Voter Fraud in Wisconsin

Five Milwaukee wards report 89% turnout in 2020 presidential vote

‘Vertical’ Vote Counts In Michigan, Wisconsin

Math Proves Trump Won

Dems collude with CIA to launch operation that alters voting results in swing states

As we’ve recommended before, please continue to pray about this election, as God can fix anything.

Thank you for your interest in, and support of, the principles of America.

PS — We are currently examining the Pennsylvania voting result for statistical anomalies (and have found considerable evidence for that (e.g. see here).

Additionally, the President’s team needs attorneys willing to help with Pennsylvania lawsuits (and likely other key swing states: AZ, WI, MI, GA, NV). If you’d like to assist with either of those actions, or how someone who would, please let me know.

Note 1: We recommend reading the Newsletter on your computer, not your phone, as some documents (e.g. PDFs) are much easier to read on a large computer screen… We’ve tried to use common fonts, etc. to minimize display issues.

Note 2: To accommodate numerous requests received about prior articles, we’ve put together detailed archives — where you can search by year, or over the ten plus years of the Newsletter. For a detailed background about the Newsletter, read this. Please email me for a free subscription

Copyright © 2020; Alliance for Wise Energy Decisions (see WiseEnergy.org)

BLM’s Shroud is Ripped Off — It’s All About Leftist Politics

The Black Lives Matter (BLM) Global Network Foundation becoming a project of the Tides Foundation should dispel any notion that BLM (2.01) is a nonpartisan group dedicated to nonpartisan solutions for racial and policing challenges. According to the Capital Research Center (CRC), this recent move means the control Thousand Currents has over BLM’s chapters will merely be transferred to yet another prominently liberal group. Thousand Currents is a nonprofit that refuses to be transparent about its financial data, and it has close ties to violent activists like Susan Rosenberg. The shift to the Tides Foundation is little better; in 2018, Tides gave $291 million to leftist groups, ranging from George Soros’s Open Society Foundations to the Hewlett Foundation.

The questionable ethics of the backers behind the BLM Global Network Foundation means any donors to BLM are not contributing to a philanthropic cause, but a radical political movement.

Major corporations such as Amazon (1.29), Apple (1.00), and Facebook (1.00) have supported this blatantly left-wing organization by donating to BLM’s allies. If these companies want to maintain their conservative and apolitical customer base, they should refrain from validating the BLM movement and its unquestionably biased funding source.

Big Tech companies have consistently been one of the worst offenders when it comes to advancing liberal messaging by suppressing right-leaning content. While these companies have repeatedly protested against the idea that they’re anti-conservative, they have pledged to donate generous sums to causes connected to the BLM movement. By moving under the Tides Foundation umbrella, the BLM Global Network Foundation is clearly aligning with the political left. It is not a neutral effort to save black lives. Big Tech should question allying with BLM if their goal is to disprove the existence of an anti-conservative agenda.

Whether a corporation donates to BLM directly or to its allies, that company is clearly favoring one side of the political aisle while vilifying the rest. Corporations will need to decide if they serve the public by delivering a product or a service, or if they intend to operate as political actors who censor those who disagree with them.

EDITORS NOTE: This 2nd Vote column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Overpopulation is an Environmental Red Herring

It is not too much of a stretch to suggest that 2020 has been an interesting year (in the sense of “May you live in interesting times”). Fires, plagues, floods, Presidential impeachment, global economic meltdown, lockdowns: this year has seen them all. And we’re only in September. Thank goodness there isn’t a major election coming up where some are predicting social breakdown in nearly every conceivable scenario or anything

It’s not quite dogs and cats living together in peace and harmony, but another sign that the end is nigh is that I find myself nodding along to an article of George Monbiot (greenie extraordinaire) in the Guardian. In it, Monbiot argues that blaming overpopulation for environmental concerns is a cop out, particularly for rich people in first world nations who get to lecture the third world on the need to have fewer children while they enjoy a lifestyle with a carbon footprint bigger than that of small central African nations.

As he states, the current population growth is overwhelmingly concentrated among the world’s poorest people. This means that a rising human population is only producing a tiny fraction of the extra resource use and greenhouse gas emissions due to consumption growth. Instead, we in the West should be turning our attention on our own behaviours (that latest iPhone, the plane trip to Davos to discuss climate change) rather than fretting about more Indian or African babies.

The example Monbiot gives of Dame Jane Goodall is a good one. She told the World Economic Forum in Davos that if only we had the same population as we did 500 years ago (500 million) then the current environmental issues would not be with us. The audience of course consisted of those with ecological footprints many thousand times greater than the global average. But the greater irony is that Goodall has previously appeared in British Airways advertising. If the world’s population was 500 million, and it was entirely composed of the average UK plane passenger, then our environmental impact would probably be greater than the 7.8 billion people alive today. When it comes to the environment, population size does not matter nearly as much as lifestyle.

Indeed, wishing that the world’s population was one-sixteenth its current size is the same as wishing for the moon and just as useless. Tut-tutting about more people being born over there saves us from having to worry about anything we are doing over here. It is environmental virtue-signalling.

Except when it leads to policy outcomes that are far worse than virtue-signalling. Population panic has led to barbaric, coercive population control measures in many countries throughout the world. And this is not an historical problem: UK foreign aid was helping to fund crude, dangerous and coercive sterilisation in India as recently as 2011, it was justified on the grounds that it was helping to “fight climate change”. (At the same time the UK aid was also pouring money into developing coal, gas and oil plants around the world…)

Of course, Monbiot could have been reading Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si in which the Holy Father said that:

“To blame population growth instead of extreme and selective consumerism on the part of some, is one way of refusing to face the issues. It is an attempt to legitimize the present model of distribution, where a minority believes that it has the right to consume in a way which can never be universalized, since the planet could not even contain the waste products of such consumption.”

And both Monbiot and Pope Francis had perhaps been reading this very blog, since nearly a decade ago I wrote of the thinly-veiled condescending bigotry underlying much of the West’s panic about overpopulation. Perhaps now that the more people are coming around to the view that the world’s population will stop growing in a few decades, we will see less insistence on the kinds of arguments Monbiot is railing against.

This content is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International license.

COLUMN BY

Marcus Roberts

Marcus Roberts was two years out of law school when he decided that practising law was no longer for him. He therefore went back to university and did his LLM while tutoring. He now teaches contract and… .

RELATED ARTICLE: Grandma took her life yesterday. Her doctors helped her

EDITORS NOTE: This Mercator Net column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

BEHRENS: Green New Deal 2.0 Doesn’t Make Biden Look Any Less Radical

Meet the “new” Green New Deal…same as the old Green New Deal.

When House Democrats introduced their new climate plan it’s clear they did so not as a serious proposal, but to give cover to Joe Biden. Their problem? Not even their own members are buying it.

You might recall the first version of the Green New Deal met with disaster even among Democrats. Despite her prime role as a media darling, AOC has never had the ability to bring her Green New Deal to a vote in the House. Democrat leaders, including Speaker Pelosi, never signed on to it and the bill was so radioactive not a single member of the Senate voted in favor of it.

For all the attention the eco-radicals and the media garnished for the first Green New Deal, it seems like not a single leader in Washington was eager to actually vote for it. Of course they had good reason, they know it spells catastrophe.

Now Democrats are taking the lemon-with-a-new-coat-of-paint approach to their environmental policy by hoping you won’t notice their new “plan” is just as out of touch as the old one. The goal is clear: Democrats are betting this proposal will appear more reasonable than the original Green New Deal and Biden won’t look like an AOC climate puppet. However, it’s just as much a threat to America’s middle class families, or even worse.

Under the plan, every American will need to budget for a new electric vehicle in the years ahead. They will also need to prepare for skyrocketing electric bills that are the result of government restricting the open energy market. Families already struggling to make ends meet will have to grapple with electric bills increasing 17 percent and forced to pay thousands to come into compliance with the law. All this at the same time millions of their neighbors lose their job in energy producing states like Pennsylvania, Louisiana and New Mexico.

I was wrong. We scared you unnecessarily, says environmentalist

Michael Schellenberger has been called an “environmental guru,” “climate guru,” “North America’s leading public intellectual on clean energy,” and “high priest” of the environmental movement for his writings and TED talks, which have been viewed over five million times. His latest book, Apocalypse Never, is creating a huge controversy. Below he showcases its main ideas.


On behalf of environmentalists everywhere, I would like to formally apologize for the climate scare we created over the last 30 years. Climate change is happening. It’s just not the end of the world. It’s not even our most serious environmental problem.

I may seem like a strange person to be saying all of this. I have been a climate activist for 20 years and an environmentalist for 30.

But as an energy expert asked by Congress to provide objective expert testimony, and invited by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to serve as Expert Reviewer of its next Assessment Report, I feel an obligation to apologize for how badly we environmentalists have misled the public.

Here are some facts few people know:

  • Humans are not causing a “sixth mass extinction”
  • The Amazon is not “the lungs of the world”
  • Climate change is not making natural disasters worse
  • Fires have declined 25% around the world since 2003
  • The amount of land we use for meat — humankind’s biggest use of land — has declined by an area nearly as large as Alaska
  • The build-up of wood fuel and more houses near forests, not climate change, explain why there are more, and more dangerous, fires in Australia and California
  • Carbon emissions are declining in most rich nations and have been declining in Britain, Germany, and France since the mid-1970s
  • Netherlands became rich not poor while adapting to life below sea level
  • We produce 25% more food than we need and food surpluses will continue to rise as the world gets hotter
  • Habitat loss and the direct killing of wild animals are bigger threats to species than climate change
  • Wood fuel is far worse for people and wildlife than fossil fuels
  • Preventing future pandemics requires more not less “industrial” agriculture

I know that the above facts will sound like “climate denialism” to many people. But that just shows the power of climate alarmism.

In reality, the above facts come from the best-available scientific studies, including those conducted by or accepted by the IPCC, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and other leading scientific bodies.

Some people will, when they read this imagine that I’m some right-wing anti-environmentalist. I’m not. At 17, I lived in Nicaragua to show solidarity with the Sandinista socialist revolution. At 23 I raised money for Guatemalan women’s cooperatives. In my early 20s I lived in the semi-Amazon doing research with small farmers fighting land invasions. At 26 I helped expose poor conditions at Nike factories in Asia.

I became an environmentalist at 16 when I threw a fundraiser for Rainforest Action Network. At 27 I helped save the last unprotected ancient redwoods in California. In my 30s I advocated renewables and successfully helped persuade the Obama administration to invest $90 billion into them. Over the last few years I helped save enough nuclear plants from being replaced by fossil fuels to prevent a sharp increase in emissions

But until last year, I mostly avoided speaking out against the climate scare. Partly that’s because I was embarrassed. After all, I am as guilty of alarmism as any other environmentalist. For years, I referred to climate change as an “existential” threat to human civilization, and called it a “crisis.”

But mostly I was scared. I remained quiet about the climate disinformation campaign because I was afraid of losing friends and funding. The few times I summoned the courage to defend climate science from those who misrepresent it I suffered harsh consequences. And so I mostly stood by and did next to nothing as my fellow environmentalists terrified the public.

I even stood by as people in the White House and many in the news media tried to destroy the reputation and career of an outstanding scientist, good man, and friend of mine, Roger Pielke, Jr., a lifelong progressive Democrat and environmentalist who testified in favor of carbon regulations. Why did they do that? Because his research proves natural disasters aren’t getting worse.

But then, last year, things spiraled out of control.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said “The world is going to end in twelve years if we don’t address climate change.” Britain’s most high-profile environmental group claimed “Climate Change Kills Children.”

The world’s most influential green journalist, Bill McKibben, called climate change the “greatest challenge humans have ever faced” and said it would “wipe out civilizations.”

Mainstream journalists reported, repeatedly, that the Amazon was “the lungs of the world,” and that deforestation was like a nuclear bomb going off.

As a result, half of the people surveyed around the world last year said they thought climate change would make humanity extinct. And in January, one out of five British children told pollsters they were having nightmares about climate change.

Whether or not you have children you must see how wrong this is. I admit I may be sensitive because I have a teenage daughter. After we talked about the science she was reassured. But her friends are deeply misinformed and thus, understandably, frightened.

I thus decided I had to speak out. I knew that writing a few articles wouldn’t be enough. I needed a book to properly lay out all of the evidence.

And so my formal apology for our fear-mongering comes in the form of my new book, Apocalypse Never: Why Environmental Alarmism Hurts Us All.

It is based on two decades of research and three decades of environmental activism. At 400 pages, with 100 of them endnotes, Apocalypse Never covers climate change, deforestation, plastic waste, species extinction, industrialization, meat, nuclear energy, and renewables.

Some highlights from the book:

  • Factories and modern farming are the keys to human liberation and environmental progress
  • The most important thing for saving the environment is producing more food, particularly meat, on less land
  • The most important thing for reducing air pollution and carbon emissions is moving from wood to coal to petroleum to natural gas to uranium
  • 100% renewables would require increasing the land used for energy from today’s 0.5% to 50%
  • We should want cities, farms, and power plants to have higher, not lower, power densities
  • Vegetarianism reduces one’s emissions by less than 4%
  • Greenpeace didn’t save the whales, switching from whale oil to petroleum and palm oil did
  • “Free-range” beef would require 20 times more land and produce 300% more emissions
  • Greenpeace dogmatism worsened forest fragmentation of the Amazon
  • The colonialist approach to gorilla conservation in the Congo produced a backlash that may have resulted in the killing of 250 elephants

Why were we all so misled?

In the final three chapters of Apocalypse Never I expose the financial, political, and ideological motivations. Environmental groups have accepted hundreds of millions of dollars from fossil fuel interests. Groups motivated by anti-humanist beliefs forced the World Bank to stop trying to end poverty and instead make poverty “sustainable.” And status anxiety, depression, and hostility to modern civilization are behind much of the alarmism

Once you realize just how badly misinformed we have been, often by people with plainly unsavory or unhealthy motivations, it is hard not to feel duped.

Will Apocalypse Never make any difference? There are certainly reasons to doubt it.

The news media have been making apocalyptic pronouncements about climate change since the late 1980s, and do not seem disposed to stop.

The ideology behind environmental alarmsim — Malthusianism — has been repeatedly debunked for 200 years and yet is more powerful than ever.

But there are also reasons to believe that environmental alarmism will, if not come to an end, have diminishing cultural power.

The coronavirus pandemic is an actual crisis that puts the climate “crisis” into perspective. Even if you think we have overreacted, Covid-19 has killed nearly 500,000 people and shattered economies around the globe.

Scientific institutions including WHO and IPCC have undermined their credibility through the repeated politicization of science. Their future existence and relevance depends on new leadership and serious reform.

Facts still matter, and social media is allowing for a wider range of new and independent voices to outcompete alarmist environmental journalists at legacy publications.

Nations are reverting openly to self-interest and away from Malthusianism and neoliberalism, which is good for nuclear and bad for renewables.

The evidence is overwhelming that our high-energy civilization is better for people and nature than the low-energy civilization that climate alarmists would return us to.

The invitations from IPCC and Congress are signs of a growing openness to new thinking about climate change and the environment. Another one has been to the response to my book from climate scientists, conservationists, and environmental scholars. “Apocalypse Never is an extremely important book,” writes Richard Rhodes, the Pulitzer-winning author of The Making of the Atomic Bomb. “This may be the most important book on the environment ever written,” says one of the fathers of modern climate science Tom Wigley.

“We environmentalists condemn those with antithetical views of being ignorant of science and susceptible to confirmation bias,” wrote the former head of The Nature Conservancy, Steve McCormick. “But too often we are guilty of the same.  Shellenberger offers ‘tough love:’ a challenge to entrenched orthodoxies and rigid, self-defeating mindsets.  Apocalypse Never serves up occasionally stinging, but always well-crafted, evidence-based points of view that will help develop the ‘mental muscle’ we need to envision and design not only a hopeful, but an attainable, future.”

That is all I hoped for in writing it. If you’ve made it this far, I hope you’ll agree that it’s perhaps not as strange as it seems that a lifelong environmentalist, progressive, and climate activist felt the need to speak out against the alarmism.

I further hope that you’ll accept my apology.

This article has been republished with permission from the website of Environmental Progress, which was founded by Michael Schellenberger.

COLUMN BY

Michael Schellenberger

Michael Shellenberger is an American author, environmental policy writer, co-founder of Breakthrough Institute and founder of Environmental Progress.

EDITORS NOTE: This MercatorNet column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Carbon Dioxide is the ‘Elixir of Life’

Kevin Mooney in his column “Group Defends Carbon Dioxide as ‘Elixir of Life’ in Climate Change Debate” reports:

Forget everything government officials, many media outlets, and “activist scientists” have warned about the damaging effects of carbon dioxide, because in reality there’s no cause for alarm, a group called the CO2 Coalition urges.

Scientists, engineers, and policy analysts who are part of the nonprofit organization turned out in force Friday at the Conservative Political Action Conference, or CPAC, outside Washington.

“Atmospheric CO2 is not a pollutant, it is in fact the very elixir of life,” Craig Idso, a science adviser to the CO2 Coalition, said during a panel discussion at CPAC exploring the benefits attached to higher levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

The CO2 Coalition, founded in 2015, describes its mission as “educating thought leaders, policymakers, and the public about the important contribution made by carbon dioxide to our lives and the economy.”

[ … ]

“Adding CO2 to the atmosphere enhances plant water use efficiency,” he said.

Increased levels of carbon dioxide could boost plant growth and make plants more resistant to droughts, he said. This could lead to increased food production, which in turn could offset projected food shortages.

Greenpeace co-founder Dr. Patrick Moore testified before the U.S. Senate Environment & Public Works Committee on February 25, 2014. During his statement for the record Dr. Moore said:

‘There is no scientific proof that human emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) are the dominant cause of the minor warming of the Earth’s atmosphere over the past 100 years.

‘Today, we live in an unusually cold period in the history of life on earth and there is no reason to believe that a warmer climate would be anything but beneficial for humans and the majority of other species…It is “extremely likely” that a warmer temperature than today’s would be far better than a cooler one.’

Earth’s Geologic History Fails CO2 Fears: ‘The fact that we had both higher temperatures and an ice age at a time when CO2 emissions were 10 times higher than they are today fundamentally contradicts the certainty that human-caused CO2 emissions are the main cause of global warming…When modern life evolved over 500 million years ago, CO2 was more than 10 times higher than today, yet life flourished at this time. Then an Ice Age occurred 450 million years ago when CO2 was 10 times higher than today.’

Greenpeace co-founder Dr. Patrick Moore also stated that oil is the ‘most important source of energy to support our civilization.’ Dr. Moore said, “If it is the aim of ‘environmentalists’ to stop fossil fuel production and use, end fracking, end coal mining, end use of oil, then they are promoting a policy that would have disastrous consequences for human civilization & the environment. If we stopped using fossil fuel today, or by 2020 as Gore proposes, at least half the human population would perish & there wouldn’t be a tree left on planet within a year, as people struggled to find enough energy to stay alive…”

The New American (TNA) interviewed Princeton University Professor William Happer on the notion that CO2 is a pollutant and is the cause of climate change, formally known as global warming. TNA reports:

Physics Professor William Happer discredits the negative effects of CO2 on the planet and whether or not climate change is man-made. He also goes into detail of why the United Nation’s models are incorrect despite their overwhelming confidence that significant warming is taking place due to human activity.

John Casey, author and former NASA rocket scientist, has taught me three facts about the climate:

  1. The climate changes.
  2. The changes are cyclical.
  3. There is nothing mankind can do to change these natural cycles.

As John notes the only thing that mankind can do is prepare for these changes using good science and the best climate prediction tools to warn us of the coming changes.

End of story. Let the real science begin!

RELATED VIDEO: Tucker Carlson versus Bill Nye (Feb. 27, 2017).

Let’s Stop with the Carbon Con Already

The side that defines the vocabulary of a debate, wins the debate. So we could ask: as we fight the global-warming scam, why are we using the language of the scammers? It’s harder to combat “carbon” taxes, “carbon” credits and callow “carbon” appeals if we accept that at issue is “carbon.”

Calling CO2 “carbon” is like calling H2O “hydrogen.” Carbon is about as useful to a plant aspiring to photosynthesize as a tank of hydrogen is to a dehydrated man in a desert. Carbon dioxide and carbon are not the same thing any more than a fox and foxglove are the same thing.

If chemical formulas are meaningless and one element or atom between friends can be ignored, try inhaling copious amounts of CO. It’s also “carbon,” being in fact more “carboney” ratio-wise than CO2. But carbon monoxide is poisonous to fauna and flora while carbon dioxide is plant food, which is why botanists pump it into greenhouses.

Likewise, would you like some chlorine with your food, sir? Sodium is poisonous; chlorine is poisonous. Combine the two — NaCl — and you have table salt. Chemistry is our friend.

It would be nice to think that the carbon crew is just being friendly and familiar. But not only would calling CO2 Mr. Dioxide be just as inaccurate, there’s clearly an agenda here. Carbon, the primary element in coal, conjures up images of spewing sky-blackening soot into the air. It’s a dark brand of marketing.

In fact, I challenge those crafting “carbon tax” bills to call CO2 “carbon” in their legislation’s text. They won’t because I suspect it wouldn’t stand up in court, as factories don’t actually emit carbon. The alarmists will either specify carbon dioxide or define, tendentiously, what “carbon” means for the “purposes of the bill.”

Of course, carbon isn’t really a villain, either. It’s the fourth-most abundant element in the universe, and man is known as a “carbon-based life form.” Given the latter, if extra atoms and elements and how they react with each other can be ignored when formulating labels and definitions, we could say that Al Gore’s birth was a carbon emission.

Honest people should reclaim the language and reboot the debate by rejecting “carbon” talk. As for those knowingly using the term for propaganda purposes, they should have a huge carbon footprint placed firmly on their carbon-based posteriors.

Contact Selwyn Duke, follow him on Twitter or log on to SelwynDuke.com

Media falsely spins Trump’s NYT climate comments

The media spin on President Elect Donald J. Trump’s sit down with the New York Times on November 22, can only be described as dishonest. Trump appears to soften stance on climate change & Donald Trump backflips on climate change  & Trump on climate change in major U-turn

The ‘fake news’ that Trump had somehow moderated or changed his “global warming” views was not supported by the full transcript of the meeting.

Heartland Institute President Joe Bast had this to say about the full transcript of Trump’s meeting: “This is reassuring. The Left wants to drive wedges between Trump and his base by spinning anything he says as “retreating from campaign promises.” But expressing nuance and avoiding confrontation with determined foes who buy ink by the barrel is not retreating.” The Heartland Institute released their skeptical 2015 climate report featuring 4,000 peer-reviewed articles debunking the UN IPCC claims.

Trump’s climate science view that there is “some connectivity” between humans and climate is squarely a skeptical climate view. Trump explained, “There is some, something. It depends on how much.”

Trump’s views are shared by prominent skeptical scientists. University of London professor emeritus Philip Stott has said: “The fundamental point has always been this. Climate change is governed by hundreds of factors, or variables, and the very idea that we can manage climate change predictably by understanding and manipulating at the margins one politically selected factor (CO2) is as misguided as it gets.” “It’s scientific nonsense,” Stott added. Stott is featured in new skeptical climate change documentary Climate Hustle.

Scientists at the UN climate summit in Marrakech commended Trump’s climate views. See: Skeptical scientists crash UN climate summit, praise Trump for ‘bringing science back again’

Trump also told resident NYT warmist Tom Friedman: ‘A lot of smart people disagree with you’ on climate change. (Note: Friedman has some wacky views: Flashback 2009: NYT’s Tom Friedman lauds China’s eco-policies: ‘One party can just impose politically difficult but critically important policies needed to move a society forward’)

Once again, Trump was 100% accurate as very prominent scientists are bailing out of the so-called climate “consensus.”

Renowned Princeton Physicist Freeman Dyson: ‘I’m 100% Democrat and I like Obama. But he took the wrong side on climate issue, and the Republicans took the right side’

Nobel Prize-Winning Scientist Dr. Ivar Giaever, Who Endorsed Obama Now Says Prez. is ‘Ridiculous’ & ‘Dead Wrong’ on ‘Global Warming’

Green Guru James Lovelock reverses belief in ‘global warming’: Now says ‘I’m not sure the whole thing isn’t crazy’ – Condemns green movement: ‘It’s a religion really, It’s totally unscientific’

Politically Left Scientist Dissents – Calls President Obama ‘delusional’ on global warming

Trump correctly cited the  Climategate scandal: “They say they have science on one side but then they also have those horrible emails that were sent between scientists…Terrible. Where they got caught, you know, so you see that and you say, what’s this all about.” See: Watch & Read: 7th anniversary of Climategate – The UN Top Scientists Exposed

Trump cited his uncle, a skeptical MIT scientist: “My uncle was for 35 years a professor at M.I.T. He was a great engineer, scientist. He was a great guy. And he was … a long time ago, he had feelings — this was a long time ago — he had feelings on this subject.” (Yes, other MIT scientists are very skeptical as well. See: MIT Climate Scientist Dr. Richard Lindzen Mocks 97% Consensus: ‘It is propaganda’

It is also worth noting that Trump’s often cited 2012 tweet about climate change stating “The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive,” was clearly a joke and he has said it was a joke. It is further worth noting that climate skeptics do not believe the conecpt of “climate change” was “created” by China.

The media have created a cartoon-version view of Trump’s climate views.  If he says anything short of global warming is a hoax created by the Chinese, then the media claims Trump flip-flopped.

Trump countered: ‘We’ve had storms always, Arthur.’

Trump is accurately citing the latest climate science by noting that extreme weather is not getting worse. See: 2016 ‘State of the Climate Report’

  • The U.S. has had no Category 3 or larger hurricane make landfall since 2005 – the longest spell since the Civil War.
  • Strong F3 or larger tornadoes have been in decline since the 1970s.
  • Sea level rise rates have been steady for over a century, with recent deceleration.
  • Droughts and floods are neither historically unusual nor caused by mankind, and there is no evidence we are currently having any unusual weather.

Trump’s claim to have an “open mind” on U.S. climate policy and his comment that “I’m going to take a look at” withdrawing from the UN Paris agreement are more nuanced than his previous blunt statements that the U.S. will cancel the UN agreement. But those comments in the context of the interview are hardly a flip-flop or major signal of changing views on the issue.

(Climate Depot Note: UN Paris climate deal ‘is likely to be history’s most expensive treaty’ – ‘Cost of between $1 trillion and $2 trillion annually’

http://www.thegwpf.com/donald-trump-on-climategate-the-paris-agrement/

Donald Trump’s New York Times Interview

President-elect Donald J. Trump during a meeting at The New York Times’s offices in Manhattan on Tuesday.

[….] THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN, opinion columnist: Mr. President-elect, can I ask a question? One of the issues that you actually were very careful not to speak about during the campaign, and haven’t spoken about yet, is one very near and dear to my heart, the whole issue of climate change, the Paris agreement, how you’ll approach it. You own some of the most beautiful links golf courses in the world …

[laughter, cross talk]

TRUMP: [laughing] I read your article. Some will be even better because actually like Doral is a little bit off … so it’ll be perfect. [inaudible] He doesn’t say that. He just says that the ones that are near the water will be gone, but Doral will be in great shape. (Note: Trump’s Seawall Is About His Business, Not Global Warming – ‘Only shows Trump uses climate alarmism to benefit his business’)

[laughter]

FRIEDMAN: But it’s really important to me, and I think to a lot of our readers, to know where you’re going to go with this. I don’t think anyone objects to, you know, doing all forms of energy. But are you going to take America out of the world’s lead of confronting climate change?

TRUMP: I’m looking at it very closely, Tom. I’ll tell you what. I have an open mind to it. We’re going to look very carefully. It’s one issue that’s interesting because there are few things where there’s more division than climate change. You don’t tend to hear this, but there are people on the other side of that issue who are, think, don’t even …

SULZBERGER: We do hear it.

FRIEDMAN: I was on ‘Squawk Box’ with Joe Kernen this morning, so I got an earful of it.

[laughter]

TRUMP: Joe is one of them. But a lot of smart people disagree with you. I have a very open mind. And I’m going to study a lot of the things that happened on it and we’re going to look at it very carefully. But I have an open mind.

SULZBERGER: Well, since we’re living on an island, sir, I want to thank you for having an open mind. We saw what these storms are now doing, right? We’ve seen it personally. Straight up.

FRIEDMAN: But you have an open mind on this?

TRUMP: I do have an open mind. And we’ve had storms always, Arthur.

SULZBERGER: Not like this (sic!).

TRUMP: You know the hottest day ever was in 1890-something, 98. You know, you can make lots of cases for different views. I have a totally open mind. (Note: EPA Says That The Worst Heat Waves Occurred in The 1930s)

My uncle was for 35 years a professor at M.I.T. He was a great engineer, scientist. He was a great guy. And he was … a long time ago, he had feelings — this was a long time ago — he had feelings on this subject. It’s a very complex subject. I’m not sure anybody is ever going to really know. I know we have, they say they have science on one side but then they also have those horrible emails that were sent between the scientists. Where was that, in Geneva or wherever five years ago? Terrible. Where they got caught, you know, so you see that and you say, what’s this all about. I absolutely have an open mind. I will tell you this: Clean air is vitally important. Clean water, crystal clean water is vitally important. Safety is vitally important.

And you know, you mentioned a lot of the courses. I have some great, great, very successful golf courses. I’ve received so many environmental awards for the way I’ve done, you know. I’ve done a tremendous amount of work where I’ve received tremendous numbers. Sometimes I’ll say I’m actually an environmentalist and people will smile in some cases and other people that know me understand that’s true. Open mind.

JAMES BENNET, editorial page editor: When you say an open mind, you mean you’re just not sure whether human activity causes climate change? Do you think human activity is or isn’t connected?

TRUMP: I think right now … well, I think there is some connectivity. There is some, something. It depends on how much. It also depends on how much it’s going to cost our companies. You have to understand, our companies are noncompetitive right now.

They’re really largely noncompetitive. About four weeks ago, I started adding a certain little sentence into a lot of my speeches, that we’ve lost 70,000 factories since W. Bush. 70,000. When I first looked at the number, I said: ‘That must be a typo. It can’t be 70, you can’t have 70,000, you wouldn’t think you have 70,000 factories here.’ And it wasn’t a typo, it’s right. We’ve lost 70,000 factories.

We’re not a competitive nation with other nations anymore. We have to make ourselves competitive. We’re not competitive for a lot of reasons.

That’s becoming more and more of the reason. Because a lot of these countries that we do business with, they make deals with our president, or whoever, and then they don’t adhere to the deals, you know that. And it’s much less expensive for their companies to produce products. So I’m going to be studying that very hard, and I think I have a very big voice in it. And I think my voice is listened to, especially by people that don’t believe in it. And we’ll let you know.

FRIEDMAN: I’d hate to see Royal Aberdeen underwater.

TRUMP: The North Sea, that could be, that’s a good one, right?

[…]

MICHAEL D. SHEAR, White House correspondent: Mr. Trump, Mike Shear. I cover the White House, covering your administration …

TRUMP: See ya there.

[laughter]

SHEAR: Just one quick clarification on the climate change, do you intend to, as you said, pull out of the Paris Climate

TRUMP: I’m going to take a look at it.

Full interview

Related Links: 

UN Armed Security Shuts Down Skeptics After Trump Event – SHREDDED UN Climate Treaty at Summit – Full Video of UN Climate Cops Shutting Down Skeptics

Climate Report to UN: Trump right, UN wrong – Skeptics Deliver Consensus Busting ‘State of the Climate Report’ to UN Summit

Trump wins U.S. Presidency! Climate Skeptics Rejoice! Set to dismantle & Defund UN/EPA climate agenda!

Bjorn Lomborg: Trump’s climate plan might not be so bad after all – Clexit ‘will will stop the pursuit of an expensive dead end’ – ‘So Trump’s promise to dump Paris will matter very little to temperature rises, and it will stop the pursuit of an expensive dead end’

 ‘The Trump Taboo’ at UN climate summit: He is ‘omnipresent…even though nobody is saying his name’ – ‘There is a taboo word at this year’s 22nd UN climate change summit: Trump. The president-elect is omnipresent in Marrakesh. You can feel him lurking behind talks on low-carbon economies and in the cracks between climate-induced loss and damage. He’s never directly addressed, but he’s always in the room. You can tell from the anxiety in people’s voices and their disapproving headshakes, heavy with concern for what the future for action on climate change holds.’

Trump casts HUGE shadow over UN climate summit

RELATED VIDEO: Energy Summit 2016

Climate Confusion

Many Americans are again confused over how the President and the United Nations can say we are at grave risk from man-made global warming (a.k.a climate change) when we continue to get pummeled by brutal, record shattering, winter storms. If this situation has you confused, take heart. You are not alone.

Once again the natural world has slapped the ‘warmist’ community down hard with yet another record breaking blizzard in the northeastern US between January 22 and January 24, 2016. Winter storm ‘Janus’ (a Weather Channel designation) dumped record snow totals in the major cities of the USA with a major snowstorm that stretched from Arkansas to Massachusetts. Here are but a few examples of the storm’s wrath:

New York City saw 26.8 inches of snow fall in Central Park, the second highest ever recorded. It missed tying the all time record by one tenth of an inch. JFK Airport had 30.5 inches of snow. Washington’s Dulles airport measured 28.3 inches, the second highest ever. Baltimore had 29.2 inches, its largest snow total ever recorded. The list of snow events and the breadth of this winter calamity that dumped record snow from the central US to the mid-Atlantic states to the Northeast was truly one for the record books.

What is also shocking about this ‘snowmageddon’ is that according to the manmade global warming crowd, none of this was possible. We were told by United Nations scientists there was not supposed to be any snow anywhere on the planet after 2003!  And who can forget the previous terrible winter of 2014-2015 here in the US, where new temperature and snow records were routinely broken. Again, that mercilessly long and cold winter was not possible either according to the climate models from the UN and the U.S. government. How can the impossible happen so often?

We should not forget other monstrously bad predictions, the ‘warmist’ community has proffered. NOAA scientists were telling us along with Al Gore, that the Arctic sea ice would be completely gone by 2008, then revised that to 2013. Of course neither happened. Global sea ice, especially in Antarctica, is in fact, growing rapidly.

Greenhouse gas emissions recently reached 400 ppm, yet the predicted overheating of the Earth is not happening – on the contrary. The 800 lb gorilla in the climate laboratory that the manmade warming community ignores is, that there has been no meaningful growth in global temperatures for eighteen years! That includes the so-called warmest year ever – 2015. Unfortunately, my colleagues and I have observed that the US government can no longer be relied upon to tell the truth about the Earth’s climate or its temperature.

The United Nations certainly cannot be trusted either. The corruption of climate science via its climate reports issued since 1990, has been so deep seated within that organization for so long, that we must now conclude they simply are unable and unwilling to be truthful. The UN climate models of which they, the US media, and our government are so enamored, are well over 100% in error in many of the models in predicting global temperature variation. Yet, the predictions from these failed models are still offered up as evidence of the need to shut down coal and CO2 production worldwide. Further, recent data suggests that the Earth’s climate appears to be relatively insensitive to CO2!  Even the UN is now confused.

It is my fondest hope that we can put the sad era of manmade global warming behind us soon and begin the preparations needed for the rapidly approaching cold epoch, a message I have been spreading since 2007. Starting this year, a long term decline in global temperature begins. It will be at the bottom during the 2020’s through the 2030’s. This time will be grim for our species as the cold era starts its destruction of crops around the world.

We humans are easily confused about the climate. Many of us actually believe what we want to believe, and not what the facts tell us we should. Worse; we are often intentionally deceived by our leaders.

The natural world does not suffer from these afflictions. It is never confused.

RELATED ARTICLE: 300 Scientists Want NOAA To Stop Hiding Its Global Warming Data

Prominent Scientists Declare Climate Claims Ahead of UN Summit ‘Irrational’ – ‘Based On Nonsense’

AUSTIN, Texas – A team of prominent scientists gathered in Texas today at a climate summit to declare that fears of man-made global warming were “irrational” and “based on nonsense” that “had nothing to do with science.” They warned that “we are being led down a false path” by the upcoming UN climate summit in Paris.

The scientists appeared at a climate summit sponsored by the Texas Public Policy Foundation. The summit in Austin was titled: “At the Crossroads: Energy & Climate Policy Summit.”

climate scientists

From Left to Right: Dr. Will Happer, Dr. Richard Lindzen & Dr. Patrick Moore.

Climate Scientist Dr. Richard Lindzen, an emeritus Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology at the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences at MIT, derided what he termed climate “catastrophism.”

“Demonization of CO2 is irrational at best and even modest warming is mostly beneficial,” Lindzen said.

Lindzen cautioned: “The most important thing to keep in mind is – when you ask ‘is it warming, is it cooling’, etc.  — is that we are talking about something tiny (temperature changes) and that is the crucial point.”

 

Lindzen also challenged the oft-repeated UN IPCC claim that most of warming over past 50 years was due to mankind.

“People get excited over this. Is this statement alarming? No,” Lindzen stated.

“We are speaking of small changes 0.25 Celcius would be about 51% of the recent warming and that strongly suggests a low and inconsequential climate sensitivity – meaning no problem at all,” Lindzen explained.

“I urge you when looking at a graph, check the scales! The uncertainty here is tenths of a degree,” he noted.

“When someone points to this and says this is the warmest temperature on record. What are they talking about? It’s just nonsense. This is a very tiny change period. And they are arguing over hundredths of a degree when it is uncertain in tenths of a degree,” Lindzen said.

“And the proof that the uncertainty is tenths of a degree are the adjustments that are being made. If you can adjust temperatures to 2/10ths of a degree, it means it wasn’t certain to 2/10ths of a degree,” he said. (Also See: Scientists balk at ‘hottest year’ claims: Ignores Satellites showing 18 Year ‘Pause’ – ‘We are arguing over the significance of hundredths of a degree’ – The ‘Pause’ continues)

“The UN IPCC wisely avoided making the claim that 51% of a small change in temperature constitutes a problem. They left this to the politicians and anyone who took the bait,” he said.

Lindzen noted that National Academy of Sciences president Dr. Ralph Cicerone has even admitted that there is no evidence for a catastrophic claims of man-made global warming. See: Backing away from climate alarm? NAS Pres. Ralph Cicerone says ‘we don’t have that kind of evidence’ to claim we are ‘going to fry’ from AGW

Lindzen also featured 2006 quotes from Scientist Dr. Miike Hulme, Professor of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia, and Director of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, admitting that claims of a climate catastrophe were not the “language of science.”

“The discourse of catastrophe is a campaigning device,” Hulme wrote to the BBC in 2006. “The language of catastrophe is not the language of science. To state that climate change will be ‘catastrophic’ hides a cascade of value-laden assumptions which do not emerge from empirical or theoretical science,” Hulme wrote.

“Is any amount of climate change catastrophic? Catastrophic for whom, for where, and by when? What index is being used to measure the catastrophe?” Hulme continued.

Lindzen singled out Secretary of State John Kerry for his ‘ignorance’ on science.

“John Kerry stands alone,” Lindzen said. “Kerry expresses his ignorance of what science is,” he added.

Lindzen also criticized EPA Chief Gina McCarthy’s education: “I don’t want to be snobbish, but U Mass Boston is not a very good school,” he said to laughter.

Lindzen concluded his talk by saying: “Learn how to identify claims that have no alarming implications and free to say ‘So what?’”

Princeton Physicist Dr. Will Happer, who has authored over 200 peer-reviewed papers, called policies to reduce CO2 “based on nonsense.”

“Policies to slow CO2 emissions are really based on nonsense. They are all based on computer models that do not work. We are being led down a false path.

“Our breath is not that different from a power plant,” he continued.

“To call carbon dioxide a pollutant is really Orwellian. You are calling something a pollutant that we all produce. Where does that lead us eventually?” he asked.

“Coal, formed from ancient CO2, is a benefit to the world. Coal is CO2 from ancient atmospheres. We are simply returning CO2 to the atmosphere from which it came when you burn coal. And it’s a good thing since it is at very low levels in the atmosphere. We are in a CO2 famine. It is very, very low,” Happer explained.

Happer continued: “CO2 will be beneficial and crop yields will increase.” “More CO2 will be a very significant benefit to agriculture,” he added.

Happer then showed a picture of polluted air in China with the caption: “Real pollution in Shanghai.”

“If you can see it, it’s not CO2,” Happer said.

“If plants could vote, they would vote for coal,” Happer declared.

Happer also rebutted the alleged 97% consensus.

“97% of scientists have often been wrong on many things,” he said.

Ecologist and Greenpeace founding member Dr. Patrick Moore discussed the benefits of rising carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

“Let’s celebrate CO2!” Moore declared.

Embedded image permalink

“We know for absolute certain that carbon dioxide is the stuff of life, the foundation for life on earth,” Moore said.

“We are dealing with pure political propaganda that has nothing to do with science,” he continued.

“The deserts are greening from rising CO2,” he added.

“Co2 has provided the basis of life for at least 3.5 billion years,” Moore said.

Note: CFACT’s new skeptical documentary, Climate Hustle, is set to rock the UN climate summit with red carpet’world premiere in Paris. 

“Green Banks” Will Drown in the Red by Jonathan Bydlak

Why does federal spending matter? There are many reasons, but perhaps the most fundamental is that free markets allocate resources better than governments because markets rely on price instead of politics. Many industries show this observation to be true, but the emerging field of “green banks” offers perhaps one of the clearest recent examples.

A green bank is a “public or quasi-public financing institution that provides low-cost, long-term financing support to clean, low-carbon projects by leveraging public funds…to attract private investment.” Right now, only a handful of green banks are scattered across Connecticut, California, New York, Rhode Island, and Hawaii.

Free marketers rightly doubt whether public funds should be used to finance private startups. But regardless of where one stands in that debate, the states’ struggles serve as a valuable testing ground for future investments.

The State of Connecticut operates under a fairly significant budget deficit. California has been calculating its budgets without taking unfunded pension liabilities into account, and it’s gambling with its ability to service its debt. New York continues to live beyond its means. Rhode Island’s newest budget does little to rehabilitate its deficit spending addiction, and, despite having a balanced budget clause in its state constitution, Hawaii has a pattern of operating at a deficit.

In fact, a state solvency report released by the Mercatus Center has each of these five states ranked in the bottom third of the country, with their solvency described as either “low” or “poor.”

This all raises the question of whether these governments are able to find sound investment opportunities in the first place. Rhode Island couldn’t even identify a bad investment when baseball legend Curt Schilling wanted $75 million to make video games about something other than baseball!

Recently, though, there have been calls to extend the struggling green banking system to the federal level. Mark Muro and Reed Hundt at the Brookings Institute argued in favor of federal action in support of green banks. Somewhat paradoxically, they assert that demand for green banking institutions and the types of companies they finance is so strong that the existing state-based green banks cannot muster enough capital to meet demand.

Wherever there is potential for profit and a sound business plan, lending institutions are likely to be found, willing to relinquish a little capital for a consistent and reasonable rate of return. So where are the private lenders and other investment firms who have taken notice and are competing for the opportunity to provide loans to such highly sought-after companies and products?

Even assuming that there is demand for green banking services, recent experience shows that a federally-subsidized system would likely lead to inefficiency, favor trading, and failure. For instance, the Department of Energy Loan Program is designed to facilitate and aid clean energy startup companies. Its portfolio exceeds $30 billion, but following a series of bad investments like Solyndra, Inc., new loan guarantees have been few and far between. The program has already lost over $700 million.

Even the rosiest measurements do not show particularly exciting returns from this system. The Department of Energy itself estimates that over the lifetime of the loans it’s guaranteed, there exists the potential to see $5 billion in profit. However, those estimates also depend on the peculiar accounting methods the DoE itself employs.

This problem is apparent in other government sectors. For instance, determining how much profit the federal government makes off of student loans depends on who is asked. Some say none, while others say it’s in the billions. Gauging the economic impact or solvency of government programs is notoriously difficult, and different methods can yield what look like very different results. Add to that the consistently uncertain nature of the energy market, and profits are hardly guaranteed.

Examples abound of wasteful federal spending, and the growing green technology and renewable energy industry is no exception. The DoE Loan Program has already faced issues that go well beyond Solyndra: Abound Solar, a Colorado-based solar panel manufacturer, was given a $400 million DoE loan guarantee, only to later file for bankruptcy, potentially costing taxpayers $60 million. The Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System, a 175,000 unit heliostat array in California, received a $1.6 billion federal loan and, because it failed to produce the amount of power estimated, was forced to later request more than$500 million in federal grants from the Treasury Department. A recent Taxpayers Protection Alliance study showed that risky investments in heavily subsidized solar energy could even lead to a bubble similar to the disastrous 2008 housing bubble.

Those who want to expand the government’s role in green banking likely want to see more clean and renewable energy reach the consumer market, and a lot of people probably applaud that goal — but the real question is whether the proposed means can reliably achieve that end. A wise manager with a solid business plan can find investors who will willingly take a chance. Considering the struggles of several states, trusting the federal government to build an even bigger system would exponentially increase that risk.

In contrast, the market offers opportunity to entrepreneurs in the green technology and renewable energy industries. For instance, GreatPoint Energy, a company specializing in clean coal, successfully went the route that other companies do: Design a product or service, find investors, and compete in the marketplace.

SolarCity, a California-based and publicly traded corporation of over 2,500 employees, entered the industry before many government loan programs were established. Thanks to a sound business model and subsequent horizontal and vertical expansion, it has become a leader in the industry. SolarCity’s success, however, cannot be touted by the Department of Energy’s Loan Program, which declined to invest in the company, leading SolarCity to try — and succeed — in finding private investment.

If GreatPoint or SolarCity had failed, only those who willingly participated in the startup would suffer the consequences. The issue with green banking — and indeed government “investments” more generally — is that taxpayers are not party to the negotiations but are the ones ultimately on the hook for failures.

In absolute terms, these billions of dollars are a lot of money. But in the grand scheme of government spending, the amount of money invested in green banks and renewable energy production is relatively small. If Social Security is the Atlantic Ocean, and wasteful defense appropriations are the Mediterranean, then green energy investments fall somewhere in the range of the Y-40 pool: easily measurable but certainly not insignificant.

Your odds of drowning may be smaller in the pool than the ocean, but that doesn’t make the drowning itself any more pleasant. The federal government is already under water; adding new liabilities on the hope that politicians can guess the future of energy is merely a step towards the deep end, not the ladder out.


Jonathan Bydlak

Jonathan Bydlak is the founder and president of the Institute to Reduce Spending and the Coalition to Reduce Spending.

Florida Voters Refused To Listen – Now They Have Been Taken Again!

Many of us have done the research and then try to teach exactly what is happening with our lawmakers. Florida’s reputation for corruption and deceit is at the top of the charts. There is a great deal to be said regarding one party being in control for far too long – and that is certainly the case in Florida.

We have been lied to over education, environmental issues, Enterprise Florida, Charter School legislation, Public Private Partnerships and the list goes on.

Today we find out the Florida lawmakers have made very little progress in regard to budget negotiating sessions and their special session is almost over. Standing at the fore front of the disagreements between the Florida House and Senate are health care, education and the environment.

Now comes the truth – House members want to borrow nearly $300 million in bonds for projects related to Amendment 1, a referendum passed by the very voters we tried to educate before the last election showing the false statements being made in relationship to the environment. Legislators were contending they were going to use the money for conservation and environmental clean-up projects.

Voters didn’t listen to the warnings!

Sen. Alan Hayes, R-Umatilla doesn’t want to use any bonds in relationship to any Amendment 1 projects. “B-O-N-D is a four letter word” Hayes said.

House environmental budget chief Ben Albritton, R-Wauchula, withdrew bonding from the House’s latest offer Sunday, calling it an “olive branch.” “I cannot be any more clear: the House is very interested and supportive of bonding as (budget negotiations) go forward ,” Albritton said.

Now why would the legislators want to do this when Amendment 1 didn’t call for raising taxes one nickel; using bond money or borrowing any funds? Amendment 1 was merely about prioritizing, forcing the state to set aside a tiny percentage of its massive budget for clean water, fresh air and preserved land. (Specifically, we’re talking a third of existing doc-stamp taxes on real-estate, which equals about 1 percent of the state’s $77 billion budget.)

At least that is what the legislators wanted us to believe. Today, June 7, 2015 Scott Maxwell of the Orlando Sentinel did a marvelous job of exposing the Florida legislators and the massive shell games they continue to play:

Remember the Lottery?  Florida Politicians May Try the Same Shell Game With the Environment!

by Scott Maxwell

Most Floridians are painfully familiar with the Florida Lottery shell game.

It was the political con of the century — one that involved tens of billions of dollars.

It started in 1986 when voters were told that, if they approved a lottery, the money would go to education.

We even called it “The Education Lottery.” That way, when you plunk down 10 bucks for a scratch-off, you’re not really gambling … you’re donating to a scholarly cause. How altruistic of you.

Well, folks started “donating” by the droves. A billion bucks. Then $10 billion. Then $20 billion … all of it supposed to improve our schools.

But Floridians didn’t notice much change in education. We still had one of the lowest-funded school systems in America. We still do.

In fact, 20 years after the lottery started, the Sentinel did an investigation and determined that education funding had actually dropped from 59 percent of the state budget in 1987 to 51 percent in 2007.

Yes, after the “Education Lottery” raised billions of dollars, the percentage actually went down.

How? Well, politicians played shell games.

Yes, they spent the lottery money on schools. But they took money they had previously spent on schools and started spending it on other things.

Admittedly, it was important things, like renovating the Legislature’s dining room, but it was other things, nonetheless.

Now, we may be doing the whole sick shell-game thing again … only this time with the environment.

Last fall, Florida voters approved Amendment 1 to demand that Florida spend more on the environment.

The amendment didn’t call for raising taxes one nickel. It was merely about prioritizing, forcing the state to set aside a tiny percentage of its massive budget for clean water, fresh air and preserved land. (Specifically, we’re talking a third of existing doc-stamp taxes on real-estate, which equals about 1 percent of the state’s $77 billion budget.)

It’s hard to overstate how overwhelming the support was. Amendment 1 passed with 75 percent. No statewide candidate got anything close to that.

But Legislators are once again playing shell games.

For instance, the House budget proposes spending $38 million of this money on existing payroll for the state’s park services and $40 million on existing forest service employees.

Gov. Rick Scott’s proposal included $17.5 million for a wastewater-treatment project in the Florida Keys.

The Senate has $10 million for salaries in the Environmental Protection division.

Were you able to keep your eye on the pea? Did you see the shells move?

Most of those endeavors aren’t new. None of them involve land preservation.

Environmental groups are crying foul. So are government watchdogs. The Florida Today newspaper in Melbourne took the rare step of running a front-page editorial last week demanding that lawmakers “Respect voters, Obey Constitution on Amendment 1.”

Many critics complain there isn’t enough money for Florida Forever land preservation — practically nothing ($8 million-$15 million) this year compared to the days when Jeb Bush was governor ($300 million).

I don’t think we should be buying land simply for buying’s sake. But I do think we need to honor the amendment.

That means protecting natural areas, restoring wetlands and cleaning up our water supplies. Fixing the Everglades, improving the Indian River Lagoon and providing recreational trails.

There is no shortage of worthy ways to spend money in a state where water is both polluted and scarce enough that we have restrictions.

The amendment’s title was clear: “Water and Land Conservation: Dedicates funds to acquire and restore Florida conservation and recreation lands.”

And this time, those pushing it were smart. They included a provision that said this money can’t be “comingled” with the general funds the state had already been using.

That means if legislators play shell games with this money, there may be grounds to sue them.

It needn’t come to that.

Lawmakers and Gov. Rick Scott are looking at a record budget. And they are free to spend 99 percent of it on education, roads, incentives, public safety, their own health-care plans — or whatever else they want.

They simply have to dedicate 1 percent to the environment.

It’s what voters wanted — and now what the constitution demands.

Scott Maxwell June 7, 2015 Orlando Sentinel  smaxwell@orlandosentinel.com

I smell a lawsuit in relation to the use of the funds to be collected from the doc-stamp taxes on real-estate. The Florida legislators have proven to us numerous times they are not to be trusted and this reaches to Governor Scott’s office also.

The lies, deceit, manipulation and corruption have been on-going for far too many years. Time for them to have to answer to the people who not only pay their salaries, but put them in those seats in Tallahassee.

EPA: Hydraulic Fracturing is No Threat to Drinking Water

Hydraulic fracturing, when done correctly, is safe and saves Americans money. The science says so.

EPA looked at scientific studies, government, NGO, and industry data and concluded that hydraulic fracturing has not had “widespread, systemic impacts on drinking water.”

For those of us closely involved in the debate over shale energy, this report simply reaffirms what previous science has shown, as Katie Brown explains at Energy In Depth:

EPA’s study actually builds upon a long list of studies that show the fracking process poses an exceedingly low risk of impacting underground sources of drinking water.  It corroborates a “landmark study” by the U.S. Department of Energy in which the researchers injected tracers into hydraulic fracturing fluid and found no groundwater contamination after twelve months of monitoring. It is also in line with reports by the U.S. Geological Survey, the Government Accountability Office, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the Groundwater Protection Council, to name just a few.

“The results of EPA’s exhaustive new analysis of hydraulic fracturing should not come as a surprise,” Christopher Guith, senior vice president for policy at the Institute for 21st Century Energy, said. “As the scope of America’s shale oil and gas opportunities have become understood, states and industry have developed regulatory environments and practices that ensure that hydraulic fracturing is done safely.”

In light of EPA’s study, some people have some reevaluating to do:

This study shows that states are successfully regulating hydraulic fracturing and duplicative federal rules aren’t needed. “Shale energy development continues to be a major economic driver of our economy, and it is critical that the federal government does not layer on duplicative and unnecessary regulations,” said Guith.

As for hydraulic fracturing opponents, they need to stop denying the science.

Meet Sean Hackbarth @seanhackbarth Follow @uschamber

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is courtesy of a hydraulic fracturing site located atop the Marcellus shale rock formation in Pennsylvania. Photographer: Ty Wright/Bloomberg.