Guest essay by Eric Worrall
Their prescription of course is more socialism.
Why President Macron’s U-turn is a warning for climate leaders
By Mark Lynas
Updated 0921 GMT (1721 HKT) December 31, 2018
(CNN) The humiliation of President Emanuel Macron should be a cautionary tale for any world statesman or woman considering taking on the mantle of climate leadership.
In October the French president was “auditioning to be leader of the free world” at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, with tackling global warming a centerpiece of his pitch.
Two months later an abashed and humbled Macron backtracked on French national television in the face of sustained violent protests by the “gilet jaunes” (yellow jackets) movement.
The immediate cause of the protests? The carbon taxes on petrol and diesel that Macron had only recently touted as evidence of French leadership on mitigating climate change. As cars and barricades burned on the streets of Paris, Macron’s climate policies also went up in smoke.
Professor Pielke’s “iron law” was first proposed in his 2010 book “The Climate Fix,” and it runs as follows: “When policies focused on economic growth confront policies focused on emissions reduction, it is economic growth that will win out every time.”
There is a way around the “iron law,” but it means coming up with climate policies that defend and enhance the jobs and livelihoods of working people rather than undermining them.
The buzz-phrase for this is “just transition” — an idea developed by the trade union movement which aims to make the transition to a low carbon economy fair on those who otherwise stand to lose out, especially workers in high carbon industries.
I guess there are a few details to work out, like if expensive and economically damaging climate policies suck all the money out of the economy, where will the cash come from to fund the “just transition”?
Perhaps we should be encouraged that CNN have finally noticed the ordinary people they have been trampling all these years, all those voters who didn’t show up in defective CNN election polls which predicted a Clinton win.