I don’t deny the reality of man-made (and possibly catastrophic) climate change. Nevertheless, I think fear is a very rational response to the actions of the climate change lobby, for two reasons.
First, giving this lobby political influence will usher in an era of eco-fascism: tyranny in the name of Mother Earth. Here’s an example:
Scientists now tell us that if you’re living in the West, and you want to fight climate change, then the best thing you can do for the planet is to refrain from having a child. Having one fewer child will save 58.6 tonnes of CO2-equivalent per year, compared to just 2.4 tonnes saved by living without a car, 1.6 tonnes saved by avoiding a round-trip transatlantic flight, 1.47 tonnes saved by buying green energy, 1.15 tonnes saved by switching to an electric car, 0.82 tonnes saved by going vegetarian… and just 0.21 tonnes saved by recycling and 0.10 tonnes saved by upgrading your light bulbs.
We already tax fuel, and many countries have laws banning incandescent light bulbs. How long will it be before prominent scientists publicly advocate taxing couples at an exorbitant rate for having more children, or even compulsory sterilization after the birth of a second child? Not very long. It would be the logical thing to do, if your number one priority is the well-being of the planet - after all, it “worked” in China, didn’t it? Gaia is a harsh mistress, it seems.
But in reality, the West is facing a demographic winter. Even in the U.S., the fertility rate is now 1.84, which is well below replacement level. There are fears that America faces a Japanese-style demographic collapse. In that case, who will pay for the pensions of young people born today?
What’s good for Gaia is not good for us.
My second reason for opposing the climate change lobby is that we really don’t have a technological solution to the problem of global warming, anyway. Forget the articles you’ve been reading about how the price of wind and solar energy is coming down. Even if it were zero, the fact is that we can’t possibly switch to an economy run entirely on wind and solar energy. Bill Gates’ own science advisor explains why:
The materials required to make wind turbines (and photovoltaic cells), such as steel, require fossil fuels to make them. Smil pessimistically concludes:
“For a long time to come - until all energies used to produce wind turbines and photovoltaic cells come from renewable energy sources—modern civilization will remain fundamentally dependent on
fossil fuels.” What’s more, “we have no non-fossil substitutes” that can replace “coke for iron-ore smelting, coal and petroleum coke to fuel cement kilns, naphtha and natural gas as feedstock and fuel for the synthesis of plastics and the making of fiberglass, diesel fuel for ships, trucks, and construction machinery, lubricants for gearboxes.”
And yet the green lobby tells us that we must cut carbon emission to ZERO by 2070, in order to prevent a climate disaster:
Professor Mark Jacobson claims we can do it, but he’s dead wrong, according to a panel of scientists who published in PNAS recently:
And the cost of implementing Professor Jacobson’s unworkable plan? By his own admission, it’s a cool $100,000,000,000,000 over a 20-year period:
If we listen to the green lobby, we’ll end up wasting trillions (not billions) on hare-brained solutions that won’t work anyway. And what will happen to the money we wanted to spend on eliminating poverty? Gone, gone, gone.
I’d say fear is a very rational response indeed to a lobby like that.
So what are we to do, assuming man-made global warming is real and significant? What we should be doing is pouring more money into research on solutions that really will work - because right now, with the exception of nuclear energy (which no-one likes anyway), we don’t have any. Carbon capture and storage might be the way to go, as it gets to the root of the problem. If we could make CCS work, we wouldn’t need to worry about having fewer children. So what’s holding it back? Ironically, it’s renewable energy. CCS can’t compete with wind and solar (which will never solve our global warming problem anyway).
I’m all for facing up to climate problems, but we need to do it intelligently. The green lobby is anti-democratic, anti-people and unintelligent.