The Sad Truth For Environmentalists About Global Warming
For years, I had a next door neighbour who was a nuclear physicist who worked for a defense contractor. He was a pleasant kind of guy and although he was definitely a lot smarter and better educated than I was we got along quite well. We even managed to assemble a new gas barbeque together once although when we finished we realized we had assembled it backwards which I suppose goes to prove that book learnin’ ain’t no substitute for ability.
I saw him coming home one day from work and he seemed a little down so I asked him if anything was the matter and he looked at me somewhat glumly and said,
“Yes. Peace is breaking out all over the place.”
Apparently peace is not something defense contractors embrace with much enthusiasm. Sure enough, my neighbour was laid off not too long after and he had to take a job in the nuclear energy industry which turned out to be like jumping from the frying pan to the fire.
Environmentalists, it seems, are even less forgiving than pacifists.
I haven’t seen him for years but got thinking about him the other day as I was reading yet another article about the global warming crisis or more accurately, the global warming crisis that never was.
It’s been a tough little period for our friends on the extreme edges of the climate change movement – common sense and facts are breaking out all around them.
In a report published in the science journal Spiegel it wasrevealed that scientists are somewhat baffled by the fact that global warming has – well – stopped. You have to believe that can’t be good news for those who have made a religion out of believing the world is going to hell in a hand basket because of climate change.
“15 years without warming are now behind us. The stagnation of global near-surface average temperatures shows that the uncertainties in the climate prognoses are surprisingly large. The public is now waiting with suspense to see if the next UN IPCC report, due in September, is going to discuss the warming stop.” – Axel Bojanowski
It appears that Al Gore was wrong although I doubt that being wrong has ever been quite as lucrative as Mr. Gore made it. He virtually became a one-man industry; the evangelist of dire consequences and like many Christian religious evangelists on television, the man knew how to turn fear into cash.
He just recently sold his small television network to Al Jazeera, the Middle Eastern news network bankrolled by oil-producing Qatar. Apparently Mr. Gore only thinks fossil fuels are a problem until those who produce them pull out their checkbooks and cut him a hefty one.
It gets worse.
Leading advocates of global warming like the former head of Green Peace and Professor Richard Lindzen of MIT had already backed away from the conventional rhetoric about global warming and climate change which, I suppose makes them environmental heretics now. Some of the most enthusiastic of the environmental movement might even consider burning them at the stake if it wasn’t for the greenhouse gas emissions the burning would create.
The UN has been forced to admit that there has been no change in the earth’s average temperature after years of dire predictions of impending climate disaster and now scientists around the world are slowly starting to admit that – well – perhaps they were a bit hasty.
This isn’t the first time that the environmental movement got climate change wrong. Back in the 80s, they were predicting an impending Ice Age. Glaciers would flow down from the Arctic, the Earth’s average temperature would plummet, the world’s food supply would be threatened and we would no longer be able to speak to each other because our teeth would be chattering too much.
On the bright side, ROOTS would make a killing on their new line of winter outerwear and more countries would become available to participate in the Winter Olympics. Hockey would become the national sport of the Bahamas and would apply for admission to the NHL.
Unfortunately, the whole global freezing thing, like the global warming crisis, turned out to be much ado about nothing – a manufactured issue based on jigged science and a considerable amount of government funding and financial contributions from the chronically naïve.
Lesser issues haven’t been going environmentalists’ way either it appears.
Many have been pushing to have some kind of carbon tax or a carbon cap and trade system like the one being used in the European Union. They like to point to Europe as having got it right when they criticize the Conservative government in general and Stephen Harper specifically for not implementing a similar system.
Cap and trade never made sense to me. It basically is a system where serious polluters can purchase “credits” from those who don’t pollute which basically means they can buy a means to continue polluting. It doesn’t impose regulation on anyone to reduce pollution and the polluters don’t pay. The cost gets passed along to you and I. It is also a system, that like the stock market, is ripe for manipulation by speculators who have nothing to do with anything except buying and selling financial instruments. Isn’t that just what we needed – another version of Wall Street where investment companies can screw up our economies and then go begging for government bailouts?
In fact, so corrupt and ineffective is carbon cap and trade, the European Union announced – somewhat quietly – that they are going to let the system die a slow death because it just isn’t working the way they predicted.
Green, or sustainable energy as environmentalists like to call it, is turning out to not be very sustainable. Wind turbine farms kill more birds in a year than all of the other industrially produced energy combined. The barely glowing light bulb spermazota we import from China contains mercury which ends up in our landfills and the amount of energy consumed in their manufacture and transport is greater than that which is saved in their use.
The polar bear population isn’t dwindling either. It’s actually increasing and the polar ice caps aren’t melting, the seal level isn’t rising and automobile emissions have been reduced by almost 90% since the 70s.
Even worse, Canada under the Conservative government is just slightly more than half way to meeting its emissions targets for 2020. It’s very annoying for environmentalists to see a conservative government accomplishing what those they supported didn’t. It was a serious ‘ouch’ moment a few years back when the Sierra Club presented an award to former Conservative Prime Minister Brian Mulroney for being the greenest prime minister in Canadian history.
You could almost see a vein popping in David Suzuki’s forehead.
Now, it’s the Alberta Oil Sands, or more accurately, the Athabasca Oil Sands in Alberta that are the great environmental catastrophe. Environmentalists from around the world have lined up to combat their development and transport of the oil extracted.
They have shown up a few decades after the fact.
Production of the oil sands started way back in 1967. Elizabeth May, one of those leading the charge against their development was a mere lass of 13. Somehow, she managed to not only live through puberty but the daily harvesting of millions of barrels of oil for decades without much problem. In fact, by 2006 approximately 1.25 billion barrels of crude per day were being extracted and it was only in the past decade that the environmental lobby decided that this was a problem.
I’m not sure how or why because all of the evidence shows that it hasn’t had much impact on air quality of our climate. Of the ten cities with the cleanest air, eight are in Canada including two in Alberta. In terms of impact on the environment, even NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair had to temper his criticism of the Oil Sands after he finally got around to touring them and became familiar with a few basic facts.
And that is a big part of the problem with the extreme edge of the environmental movement. It is more religion than fact, a cult that moves from one issue to the next when their dire predictions on the previous issue are proven groundless.
In fact, like so many arguments these days, the environmental argument isn’t really about the environment at all. It’s an ongoing confrontation between those who believe that people should be heavily regulated for the benefit of the planet, their own safety or whatever other issue and those who believe that people should be left alone to live their lives as they see fit and as best they can.
The extreme environmental movement has crossed the line from serious discussion into hysterical rhetoric and hypocritical action. They jet around the world to attend conferences, throwing vast amounts of greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere even as they demand people pay increase taxes on their carbon footprint. They support energy consumption but endorse light bulbs manufactured in China which contain mercury that only ends up in our landfills and which consume more energy to manufacture and ship than is actually saved by their use.
It is activism without thought, a cult of believers who ignore real science or even the realities of the world in which we live.
It is a fact, for example that industry has developed or funded the development of more environmental preservation technology than all of the activists combined. It is the auto industry that developed technology to reduce carbon emissions by almost 90% over the past two decades and who were working on it long before Dr. David Suzuki and Elizabeth May were struck by the light of a green Jesus. That same industry has developed automobiles that run on bio-fuel, electricity and now have a prototype that runs on hydrogen extracted from – get ready for it – water.
That seems a whole lot more significant to me than Darryl Hannah chaining herself to the fence outside the White House to protest the Oil Sands.
Environmentalists have taken to labeling the oil extracted from the Oil Sands as unethical but I would suggest that their hysterical hypocrisy is the true lack of ethics. They are too willing to blame, accuse, condemn and to regulate others without regard for anything but their own misguided beliefs.
I support environmental protection. We live in a country with magnificent landscapes and pristine beauty but throwing hissy fits to support false claims and treating every issue as a catastrophe that somehow justifies the restriction of the rights of all citizens and which impedes job growth and national prosperity is absurd. I believe that it is possible to have cooperation between resource development and environmental protection without all the acrimony and hysteria.
Perhaps someday we might just achieve that but until then we will be forced to take baby steps along the road to sanity and common sense.
Now if somebody would explain to me why it is acceptable to celebrate Earth Day across the land and in our schools but unacceptable to celebrate Christmas in the same manner, I’d be a happy guy.
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