With the SNC Lavalin affair dragging down the federal government, the resignation of a key fossil fuel appointment as leader of the World Bank, and a new head of the Presidential Committee on Climate Security of the United States, the headlong rush into punitive carbon taxes and restrictions on production, transport, and consumption of coal, oil and natural gas may take a much-needed pause.
Gerald Butts, who was a key figure in the SNC scandal, has resigned. Apparently, he was the Prime Minister’s point man on climate change and the federal carbon tax. There is already considerable opposition to the climate crusade from the Saskatchewan and Ontario governments, and more could come if a new United Conservative regime is elected in Alberta this spring. It would end entirely if the Liberals are defeated nationally in the fall.
Jim Yong Kim was also a prime proponent of carbon taxes and an adherent of the more dire theoretical projections of where global temperatures are headed without drastic reductions in carbon dioxide emissions. The World Bank’s stance on CO2-emitting projects such as coal or gas fired power stations or oil and gas development or pipelines is important for energy democratization and improvement in standards of living and economic growth in developing nations.
Dr. Will Happer, the proposed appointee to the Presidential committee, is a renowned physicist with serious skepticism about Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming (CAGW) and the role that human carbon dioxide emissions have in any such observed warming. He is certain to marshall the considerable counter-evidence against accelerating warming and carbon dioxide contribution to it in a counter-offensive against the forces which persist in ignoring or disparaging it.
Certain other new developments also cast doubt on the motives and methods of the most ardent proponents of CAGW. For instance, the ‘Green New Deal’, which was launched by ‘progressive’ Democrats in the United States a few weeks ago is mainly a screed calling for: aggressive income redistribution; punitively progressive income taxes; rapid phase-out of all fossil fuel use, not only in generating electricity, but in all forms of transportation; curtailing beef production; and retrofitting or reconstruction of all buildings in the United States to become low-energy use and carbon-neutral.
All of this would cost trillions of dollars and vastly increase US federal government control of all aspects of the American economy and individuals’ lives. Of course, that is the point of all of these ambitious and, indeed, extreme ‘green’ plans: to take income and wealth from more affluent people, and the most affluent countries, and spend it on the lowest-income people and countries, under central diktat.
All this revolution would occur while giving much greater power to central governments everywhere and diminishing the free market economic system to a mere vestige of its former, wealth- and innovation-generating self. Since wealthy people, and their capital, are mobile and able to defer or avoid taxation, much of the burden would fall on middle income families. With little disposable income left after all these massive initiatives, regulations, taxes and penalties, recession, if not dire depression would ensue.
Meanwhile, the ardent and adamant proponents of these nightmarish plans, and all their friends and relations would be in charge of it all, which would satisfy them greatly, as they may have few other marketable skills in today’s more pragmatic, results-and-evidence-rooted capitalistic society.
If the goal is to gradually lower CO2 emissions and have an orderly transition to a much larger share of energy production and consumption be greener, without impoverishing or immiserating billions of people planet-wide, then instead of the fiendishly high carbon taxes that would force this dubious utopia to come about, more effort should be put into determining which energy storage methods will make solar and wind energy truly viable and commercial, and not demonize natural gas and nuclear reactors, which would almost certainly have to be part of this new energy mix. Hat tip: Ed Burgener