Environmental Extremists Don’t Believe Their Own Predictions

 

In public discourse, it’s considered bad form to insult your opponent’s integrity. But it’s almost impossible to believe that climate alarmists believe their own apocalyptic predictions.

Greta Thunberg, Al Gore, and other experts sternly warned that our planet will be an uninhabitable, unsalvageable oven unless within 15 years (now 10 or 12) we bend all human activity to the goal of eliminating carbon emissions. If true, this creates an obvious moral imperative.

So on his first day in office, President Biden terminated the extension of the Keystone pipeline, created to export shale oil from Alberta to the US. It was, uh, controversial.

Union leaders were upset that 60,000 good jobs were lost. The pipeline’s demise threatened America’s energy independence. There were safety and environmental concerns too. Even Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm admitted that pipelines are the best, lowest carbon means of transporting fuels.

But no matter. Keystone made feasible the transport and use of fossil fuels and had to be stopped, no matter the impact on the welfare of Americans.

Maybe not smart, but at least ideologically consistent. To the environmental Left calling the shots, it signified America’s willingness to sacrifice for a carbon-free future.

But then in May, Biden did an about-face and gave the go-ahead to a similar Russian project transporting natural gas to Germany and other European countries via an immense underseas pipeline. It’s a huge win for Russia, cementing the economic dependence of fuel-starved Europe and circumventing the necessity of paying transit fees to Ukraine.

But waiving the Trump-era sanctions on Nordstream was an expensive concession. Russia’s gain is America’s loss of an export market. Our value to our European allies is diminished. Moreover, all the arguments against supporting fossil fuel use that shut down Keystone apply equally to Nordstream.

The effects of carbon emissions on global temperature are obviously the same regardless of their origin. Russia and China have paid only thinly disguised lip service to participating in reduction efforts. For us to aid expansion of Russian fossil fuel production is nuts.

So what did good old Joe get for this precious gift to Putin? Nothing.

But even in a world where the unthinkable keeps morphing into reality, Biden would never have agreed to open the pipeline if he really believed our continued existence depended on radically transforming away from fossil fuels in the next few years.(“Biden“ is used here to denote whoever the deciders are behind the curtain in the current administration).

More suspect thinking surrounds the current fad for electric car subsidies. The subsidies are popular with wealthy beneficiaries, of course, the manufacturers and drivers.

The US spends about $10,000 per car on these “temporary“ handouts intended to promote the development of the electric car market. Nations around the world are charging ahead with plans to eliminate fossil-fuel-powered cars within the foreseeable future.

But electric cars aren’t all that green. First, manufacturing the large batteries is an energy-intensive process they can emit a quarter as much greenhouse gases as a gasoline car produces in a lifetime.

Second, the electricity to operate a clean vehicle must be generated somewhere. Solar and wind are not yet technically developed to the point of being adequate contributors and non-emitting nuclear has been shunned by self-styled environmentalists. For now, that leaves fossil fuels.

Electric cars in sum have little or no effect on net emissions. The International Energy Agency estimates that if all the players follow through and we get to 140 million electric cars by 2030 – a highly ambitious goal – the net reduction would be only 0.4% of global emissions.

The alarmists wouldn’t be wasting their time on cars if they really believed the end was near. “Biden“ just sees a chance to make a politically astute move that corresponds with environmental groupthink.

It’s pretty obvious that the enviros don’t believe their own BS (sorry, ladies). The Thunberg/Gore 15-years-and-out prophecy is one of 50 hair-raising expert predictions documented by the American Enterprise Institute, all meant to induce panic and soften us up to accept the attendant necessary sacrifices.

Relax. Not one of them has come true.

Published in Environment
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  1. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    Of course they don’t. 

    Once, about 20 years ago, I talked of a leftist envrio-commie at a political debate. He said the world would be unlivable in 10 years. I laughed in his face and asked him why he cared who the mayor of the city was. I mean, if I thought that, I’d be headed for the hills. 

    They are all grifters. 

    • #1
  2. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Great post. As regards nuclear, it should be seen as a reliable litmus test: embrace of nuclear is not sufficient to demonstrate that someone is serious about climate change, but it’s necessary; rejection of nuclear is strong evidence that someone isn’t really worried about climate change, or is simply uninformed.

    • #2
  3. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    Jon retweeted this so it showed up in my timeline. Good news in Wyoming. Fun watching the people decrying it in the replies being called haters of the environment.

    • #3
  4. Full Size Tabby Member
    Full Size Tabby
    @FullSizeTabby

    People who believe that apocalyptic rhetoric don’t buy mansions on the coasts of supposedly rising oceans. Or subject their fellow humans to a quicker demise by flying around the world in large private jets and building ever larger power-hungry mansions. 

    • #4
  5. Joker Member
    Joker
    @Joker

    Has any apocalyptic environmental prediction ever come true? Maybe I’m only aware of the big fails.

    • #5
  6. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    Joker (View Comment):

    Has any apocalyptic environmental prediction ever come true? Maybe I’m only aware of the big fails.

    Just saw this on Twitter.

    • #6
  7. OccupantCDN Coolidge
    OccupantCDN
    @OccupantCDN

    Passion governs, and she never governs wisely. – Benjamin Franklin

    The whole point of environmentalism is to embroil the passions of the electorate, to make them so fearful that they dare not examine the possibilities of their policy proposal. The world is going to end in 15 years? Why go to school? Why spend the next 5 getting a degree that you’ll never have a career for?

    • #7
  8. WI Con Member
    WI Con
    @WICon

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Of course they don’t.

    Once, about 20 years ago, I talked of a leftist envrio-commie at a political debate. He said the world would be unlivable in 10 years. I laughed in his face and asked him why he cared who the mayor of the city was. I mean, if I thought that, I’d be headed for the hills.

    They are all grifters.

    And they wouldn’t be spending millions on building and maintaining homes on “soon to be Atlantis/a.k.a. Martha’s Vinyard”.

    • #8
  9. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Tom Patterson: So what did good old Joe get for this precious gift to Putin? Nothing.

    Unfortunately, you’re going to see a lot of this in the future . . .

    • #9
  10. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    Stad (View Comment):

    Tom Patterson: So what did good old Joe get for this precious gift to Putin? Nothing.

    Unfortunately, you’re going to see a lot of this in the future . . .

    Pretty sure this happened with the World Health Organization too. I bet the administration resumed funding without getting any concessions from WHO for their screw ups handling the Wu Flu. The reason the Trump administration stopped funding them.

    • #10
  11. Cal Lawton Member
    Cal Lawton
    @CalLawton

    Well yeah, look where Obama bought his beach house and where CNN moved their NYC HQ.

    • #11
  12. Roderic Reagan
    Roderic
    @rhfabian

    Just off hand I can’t think of any major green government projects that are actually green.  Ethanol production in the US actually consumes more energy that it produces and causes a net increase in carbon dioxide production by 25%.  It it exists only to enrich Big Ag.  Solar and wind also have huge implementation, maintenance, and disposal costs that outstrip any potential benefit to the environment.  They are already close to their maximum possible efficiency, which isn’t very good in practice.  Wind and solar farms exist only because they are subsidized by the government.   Switching to electric cars does nothing more than switching from burning gasoline and diesel to burning coal and natural gas although they are more efficient. 

    Changing to LED lights did actually bring down energy consumption, but I think they’d have competed well in the market without government mandates.  

    This fad of mandating cuts in emissions by date certain might concern me if I thought there was a chance that they’d actually be adhered to, but they won’t.  

    The only policy that has a good chance of reducing emissions outside of mandating a shutdown in the economy is promotion of nuclear energy.

    • #12