President Trump could help – and force climate alarmists to answer questions they’ve ignored
Guest opinion by Paul Driessen
Ever since the elections, our media, schools, workplaces and houses of worship have presented stories showcasing the stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.
Liberal-progressive snowflakes are wallowing in denial, anger and depression. They cannot work, attend class or take exams. They need safe “healing” spaces, Play-Doh, comfort critters and counseling. Too many throw tirades equating Donald Trump with Adolph Hitler, while too few are actually moving to Canada, New Zeeland or Jupiter, after solemnly promising they would.
Nouveau grief is also characterized by the elimination of bargaining and acceptance – and their replacement by two new stages: intolerance for other views and defiance or even riots. Sadly, it appears these new stages have become a dominant, permanent, shameful feature of liberal policies and politics.
The Left has long been intolerant of alternative viewpoints. Refusing to engage or debate, banning or forcibly removing books and posters, threatening and silencing contrarians, disinviting or shouting down conservative speakers, denying tax exempt status to opposing political groups, even criminalizing and prosecuting climate change “deniers” – have all become trademark tactics. Defiance and riots were rare during the Obama years, simply because his government enforced lib-prog ideologies and policies.
Liberals view government as their domain, their reason for being, far too important to be left to “poorly educated” rural and small-town voters, blue-collar workers or other “deplorable” elements. Liberals may not care what we do in our bedrooms, but they intend to control everything outside those four walls.
They are aghast that over 90% of all US counties and county equivalents voted for Trump. They’re incensed that President Trump and Republicans in Congress, 33 governor’s offices and 69 of 99 state legislatures nationwide will likely review and reform policies, laws and regulations on a host of issues.
Above all, they are outraged over what might happen to their “dangerous manmade climate change” mantra. It was supposed to be their ticket to endless extravaganzas at 5-star venues in exotic locales – their trump card for controlling the world’s energy, economy, livelihoods and living standards.
That is why they demand that only their “facts” be heard on the “consensus science” supporting policies they say are essential to prevent a “disastrous” 2º C (3.6º F) rise from 1850 levels, when the Little Ice Age ended (and the modern industrial era began). It’s why the Paris climate agreement tells developed nations to keep fossil fuels in the ground, roll back their economies and reduce their living standards – while giving $100 billion per year to poor countries for climate mitigation and reparation.
That, in turn, is why developing countries eagerly signed the Paris accord, bringing it into force and effect just before this year’s climate confab in Marrakech. They would not be required to reduce their fossil fuel use or greenhouse gas emissions. And they – or at least their governing classes – would receive trillions of dollars over the coming decades. Countless thousands were thus in jolly spirits as they flew giant fuel-guzzling, GHG-spewing jetliners into Morocco for the historic event.
But then, on the third day, news of the US elections brought misery and mayhem to Marrakech. Event organizers had tolerated credentialed Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow representatives handing out Climate Hustle DVDs and discussing Real World climate science and energy development. But when CFACT erected a Donald Trump cutout and shredded a copy of the Paris accord, they sent armed police to forcibly end the educational event and boot the impudent non-believers out of the hallowed conference.
Marrakech may have marked the zenith of the religious-political climate movement. President-Elect Trump has long held that there is likely “some connectivity” between human actions and the climate – but he has also said it is a “hoax” to say humans are now causing catastrophic global warming and climate change. He also says he has an “open mind” on the issue and will be studying it “very closely.”
Here are a few important facts and probing questions that he could raise, to get the ball rolling.
1) The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change was formed to detect and assess possible human influences on global climate systems, amid many natural forces. However, it soon began looking only at human influences. Now it claims warming, cooling and weather are driven only by human emissions. How and why did this happen? How can alarmists ignore the powerful natural forces, focus solely on air emissions associated with fossil fuel use – and call it solid, honest, empirical, consensus science?
2) Your “manmade climate chaos” thesis – and computer models that support it – implicitly assume that fossil fuel emissions and feedbacks they generate have replaced numerous powerful natural forces that have driven climate cycles and extreme weather events throughout Earth and human history. What caused the ice ages and interglacial periods, Medieval Warm Period, Little Ice Age, Anasazi and Mayan droughts, and other major climate and weather events – before fossil fuel emissions took over?
Where did all those natural forces go? Why are they no longer functioning? Who stole them? When did they stop ruling the climate: in 1850, 1900, 1950 … or perhaps 1990, after the IPCC was established?
3) You claim climate and weather patterns are already “unprecedented” and increasingly cataclysmic. But even as plant-fertilizing CO2 levels continue to climb, average global temperatures have risen barely 0.1 degrees the past two decades, amid a major El Niño. Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets are growing at record rates. Seas are rising at barely seven inches per century. It has now been a record eleven years since a category 3-5 hurricane struck the US mainland; the previous record was nine years, 1860 to 1869. The 2016 US tornado count was the lowest on record. Where are the unprecedented cataclysms?
4) Your computer models begin with the assumption or assertion that increasing levels of carbon dioxide will cause rapidly, dangerously rising global temperatures, and more extreme weather events. But if this assumption is wrong, so are your models, projections and scenarios. It’s garbage in / garbage out. And in fact your models have been wrong – dramatically and consistently, year after year. When will you fix them? When will they factor in data and analyses for solar, cosmic ray, oceanic and other natural forces?
5) The manmade climate cataclysm community has refused to discuss or debate its data, methodologies, analyses and conclusions with those whom you call “skeptics” or “deniers.” 97% consensus, case closed, you say. What do you fear from open, robust debate? What manipulated data or other tricks are you trying to hide? Why are you afraid to put your cards on the table, lay out your supposed evidence – and duke it out? Do you really think taxpayers should give you one more dime under these circumstances?
6) The FDA and other federal agencies require that applications for drugs, medical devices and permits for projects include extensive raw data, lab and project methodologies, and other information. Your modeling and other work is largely paid for with taxpayer money, and used to determine public policies. Why should you be allowed to hide your data and methodologies, treat them as proprietary, refuse to share them with Congress or “realist” scientists, and refuse to engage in a full peer-review process?
7) EPA’s “social cost of carbon” scheme blames everything imaginable on fossil fuels – but totally ignores the huge benefits of using these fuels. Isn’t that misleading, disingenuous, even fraudulent?
8) America already produces more ethanol than it can use. Now EPA wants another 1.2 billion gallons blended into our gasoline. Why should we do this – considering the land, water, environmental, CO2, fuel efficiency and other costs, rampant fraud in the RIN program, and impacts on small refiners? If we replace all fossil fuels with biofuels, how much land, water, fertilizer and energy would that require?
9) Wind turbines are land intensive, heavily subsidized and exempted from most environmental rules. They kill millions of birds and bats. Their electricity is expensive and unreliable, and requires fossil fuel backup generators. Why should this industry be exempted from endangered species laws – and allowed to conduct bogus mortality studies, and prevent independent investigators from reviewing the work?
Mr. Trump, keep an open mind. But keep exercising due diligence. Trust, but verify. And fire anyone who lies or refuses to answer, or provides the climate equivalent of shoddy work and substandard concrete.
Paul Driessen is senior policy analyst for the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (www.CFACT.org), and author of Eco-Imperialism: Green power – Black death and other books on the environment.