NYT Encourages Readers to Embrace their Inner Climate Hypocrite

Screenshot from the movie Avatar, directed by James Cameron

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

“Focus on systems, not yourself” – According to author Emma Marris, people who are stressed out about their personal carbon footprints need to understand it is not their fault.

How to Stop Freaking Out and Tackle Climate Change

Here’s a five-step plan to deal with the stress and become part of the solution.

By Emma Marris
Jan. 10, 2020

Ms. Marris is the author of “Rambunctious Garden: Saving Nature in a Post-Wild World.”

As an environmental writer, I’m often asked for guidance on coping with climate change. I have thoughts. Even better, I have a five-point plan to manage the psychological toll of living with climate change and to become part of the solution.

Step 1: Ditch the shame.

The first step is the key to all the rest. Yes, our daily lives are undoubtedly contributing to climate change. But that’s because the rich and powerful have constructed systems that make it nearly impossible to live lightly on the earth. Our economic systems require most adults to work, and many of us must commute to work in or to cities intentionally designed to favor the automobile. Unsustainable food, clothes and other goods remain cheaper than sustainable alternatives.

Imagine dense but livable cities veined with public transit and leafy parks, infrastructure humming away to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, fake meat that tastes better than the real thing, species recovering and rewilding the world, the rivers silver with fish, the skies musical with flocking birds.

Read more: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/10/opinion/sunday/how-to-help-climate-change.html

If you think this advice sounds familiar you are absolutely correct. Emma’s suggestion is very similar to the excuse Extinction Rebellion provided when challenged about the lifestyles of their celebrity anti-flying campaigners.

But Emma takes this reframing a step further – she describes a glorious future of high density cities teaming with wildlife, yet crisscrossed with public transport, which will somehow be possible if we learn to “live lightly on the Earth”.

In the real world, mixing high density public transport with teaming wildlife usually produces lots of roadkill.

Perhaps I am being too harsh. Emma isn’t actually offering an explanation for how her vision might be achieved. Emma has provided the vision; I guess it is now up to engineers and rich people to sort out the implementation details.

138 thoughts on “NYT Encourages Readers to Embrace their Inner Climate Hypocrite

  1. How do you avoid Climate Change Stress? Just forget about the whole array of baseless nonsense which has been elaborated around the role of CO2 in the Earth’s atmosphere and check the latest satellite measured energy balance of the Earth which shows it is nett losing heat at present. Have a nice day.

      • I quit stressing back in the 70’s when accepted we were all gonna die from global cooling by the 80’s.

        • Not forgetting before the 70ies global cooling stress, we had the West fearing nuclear war with Russia, when loads of people built homes with fall out shelters.

          • …and that was a real threat! The biggest climate threat is zealots pushing for carbon sequestration, which would impact the carbon cycle and foodstuff production right along with it! Taking our carbon is tantamount to making us starve!

  2. It’s those nasty rich and powerful systems builders again! I knew it! /sarc
    Please excuse me while I shred the free tickets for the climate guilt trip. I”m not getting on that bus, because it’s going in the wrong direction.
    Let’s see what happens and adapt. There.

    • I must have dreamt paying road taxes for fifty years to build the roads we demanded, and telling the powers-that-be that mass transit was not wanted. But wait, I had a real job (now retired). Perhaps that qualifies as being rich and powerful.

      • yes, jtom,

        Our economic systems require most adults to work,

        It’s those oppressive rich folks –no not you–and if they had just given you their money, you would not have had to work and pay taxes asking for the roads to be built.. it’s THEIR fault not yours. Stop trying to take responsibility for what they do and start feeling good about being a victim.

  3. Imagine dense cities…
    Where the UHI effect will raise ambient temps by up to 15F-18F above rural levels
    Where the population levels are Dense and the Eco-Nut head cases are denser
    Where your commute to work is 27 stories down an elevator shaft
    Where visiting your relatives isn’t allowed (as you would need to leave your assigned building)
    Where you can visit the rural countryside in VR only

    • And then, of course they will need to figure out how to grow all the food that will be needed and actually transport it there, as well as pumping the water that will be needed, and getting rid of the sewage, and then providing energy to stay warm or cool…. whichever.

    • Read Harry Harrison’s “Make Room! Make Room!” – filmed as “Soylent Green” for this kind of dystopian future. Didn’t happen!

  4. If she could figure out a way to make the cities a much less hazardous place to live maybe many more people would not get into their autos and flee. All I have to do is turn on the local news everyday to see that the big city near me isn’t the place I am willing to risk my life just because they have some museums, live theaters and public transportation .

    • @A James & Bryan: yep, haven’t bothered to check but it looks like she is in favour of the type of city proposed by the Venus Project, which is supported by the usual suspects at the UN. A prison city. Blade Runner and the like. Vast amounts of solar exposed concrete that in any part of the world apart from temperate to cold, would heat up and stay hot for several months. Same old feudal fantasy endlessly repeated.

    • Jakarta the mega city is sinking from the weight of its over development and is subject to flooding. You need to stay up with current events before those events get added to a UN bill sent to your door in the new scapegoat world of advocacy shaming.

      • The main reason Jakarta is sinking is due to ground water extraction. Has been happening for decades but now rising seas as a result of climate change is the new blame of the day.

      • Jakarta/Indonesia better watch out, overpopulating an area has been know to cause it to tip over. Just ask Rep. Hank Johnson.

    • The NYT article is just shameless. It might be noteworthy that 40 per cent of the capital Jakarta, is below sea level. And that land subsidence from groundwater over-extraction is the main cause of chronic flooding (5-10 CM / year in most areas, as much as 20 CM / year in some, vs. about 0.33 CM of sea level rise), and upstream management of the watershed is also a major contributor to downstream flooding)

      “Floods that killed more than 50 people in Indonesia’s capital after the biggest rainfall since records began ”

      It would be clear after even a little thought on the subject, that this would have happened at least once, everywhere that there are records the first year is the wettest year EVER on record.

      And it would happen several times after, since it’s unlikely that records would only start in the wettest year EVER, and that there are tens of thousands of places where people keep records of rainfall, so hundreds of places will get their wettest, driest, hottest, or coldest ‘year EVER’, every year.

      Jakarta floods frequently, and I’m sorry to hear about the tragic loss of life. Like everyone, I hope that the flooding and aftermath across the country will not exact a toll as heavy as the 1990 floods, and that systems are in place to mitigate the effect of any natural disaster like the 2004 tsunami that killed 170,000.

      The important thing, for me, is that I now know that the only way to provide significant, useful help, is to find a way (probably an NGO) to help Jakarta’s poor be able to leave the water in the ground. The Netherlands’ plan to research building a ring dike looks useful too.

      [regarding Indonesia] “…However, the country is the world’s fifth-largest emitter of the greenhouse gases…”

      Actually the Union of Concerned Scientists placed them 12th on the graph, 11th on the list, and 19th on the Per Capita list, and Japan is 5th with more than double Indonesia’s emissions. I’m done reading that NYT article at this point. They should be fact-checking.

      • and then?
        news today reported Venices waterways have dried up;-))
        yup no water and boats sitting on the riverbed was the report I heard on ABC radio today in Aus.
        well thats given them a good op to go clean the riverbeds and fix foundations surely?
        some people are just never satisfied

        • Thanks Oz, I hadn’t heard of the extreme LOW tides in Venice. I am shocked that the news is not front page worldwide. Shocked I say!

      • Indonesia is listed by the UNFCCC as one of the countries with a 0% fNRB rating (fraction of non-renewable biomass). This means it is not only net positive for biomass harvesting and regrowth, it means that as the CO2 concentrations rises, the rate of sequestration of CO2 increases.

        You all will have by now seen the NASA chart of global greening. The rate is pretty high – more than I thought it would be. So whatever the CO2 emission rate per capita is, it will be reduced by the fact there is so much more of it.

        The rate of reduction is increasing. Rather interesting.

    • NYT has the gall to use the term hypocrite. Or that Indonesia is drowning, reminded me of the NYT blaming the Nov 2019 flooding in Venice on Climate Change. But no mention in the NYT, January 2020 Venice low tides are leaving Canals dry and the boats ‘beached’.

      • The BBC, however, have acknowledged the current low tides, but claim the recent flood was of course due to “climate change” and the low tide whilst unusual is not unprecedented. Presumably because it wouldn’t fit the narrative. I don’t think they’re trying hard enough, a headline of “Venice flood has risen to dangerously low level because CO2” would make as much sense as anything else they put out.

  5. No, no, no, no, no! You are responsible for your own behaviour. Anyone who believes their carbon footprint is excessive should stop breathing out right now and certainly not have children……

  6. What I find amusing down in Oz are the stories run in the ABC media of people who have escaped from their claimed carbon generating city life and moved to the bush to be an example of sustainable living. These supposedly sustainable greenies might build a tiny house in the bush with solar panels and a battery, but they need many acres of land to grow sufficient food, even for a small family. If an entire nation decided to follow suit you would quickly realise why this could never work and yet the green media remain oblivious to this reality.

    • Veggies actually grow really well in Australia, but they need plenty of irrigation and lots of bug spray. And a lot of Aussie soil is severely deficient in nutrients, so you need plenty of chemical fertiliser, and some lab work / soil analysis if it isn’t working.

      I still wouldn’t want to try to live off a hand tilled farm, tried it once, even with several hours work per day and lots of chemicals I still only managed to grow enough veggies to live supermarket free for two months that year.

  7. “species recovering and rewilding the world, the rivers silver with fish, the skies musical with flocking birds.”
    Translation: The very rich and powerful will have nature, the rest of us will live in concrete dives in overcrowded cities. That has always been part of the goal—imprison the riff-raff in concentrated areas that the rich and powerful can fully ignore. Oh, and for those utopian ideas to work, the world populaton is going to have to decrease by about 90% and we know it won’t be the hypocrites who will still have their own factories and possessions. It’s all about destroying humanity.

    • And of COURSE their gamekeepers will shoot all the poachers! Back to the future, ca. 17th-century English feudalism, eh wot?

      These people are bubbleheaded wackos, and the NYT now reads like the paper for Dr. Suess’ “Solla Sollew.”

      • Goldrider
        It is my impression that one of the defining characteristics of progressives is their detachment from reality. They think that just because they can imagine something (such as Custer’s Last Stand, Revisited) that it is automatically a realizable possibility.

        • My lifelong impression of lefties is that they do far more emoting than thinking. You can even hear it when they speak, often they start conversations by saying “I feel” instead of “I think”.

    • “That has always been part of the goal—imprison the riff-raff in concentrated areas that the rich and powerful can fully ignore”

      No, it’s worse than that. No farmer or rancher keeps a herd or flock of half males and half females. Think about how and why they don’t keep half of the herd as bulls, and how it could go if ideas of population reduction are carried to the worst dystopian extremes.

  8. They’re wandering off into a psychosis that tells them achieving a perfect world is simply a matter of telling the right stories. In some cases those stories are almost biblical in tone. In this storytelling piece the author states that once they’ve succeeded ushering in the golden age, “We will be unable to remember what the old world was like.” That’s reminiscent of a verse in the bible where God says that things of the former world won’t even be remembered in heaven. These people are seriously out of touch with reality.


    • Everybody knows you can never have too many unicorns.

      We should be turning up the unicorn production knob to Eleven.

  9. Well, Emma is right about two things-
    (1) Personal effort like recycling plastic and living by candle light at night is not going to save the planet.
    And as George Carlin said,the Planet is fine. Some of its inhabitants are f####d.
    (2) Two degrees of warming does not mean we are “doomed”.
    As someone who does not believe CO2 is a “pollutant”and believes that we are experiencing the lowest average CO2 levels in the earth’s history, I am happy for CO2 to double later this century.
    As a result I have no increased anxiety and don’t need the NY Times advice.

    • It’s-26C where I live. Windmills are operating at 4% of capacity, the highest I’ve seen it all day.

      Awfully glad I have natural gas to heat my home, even though the Trudeau carbon tax will cost more than the natural gas I’m using.

      Just wish the greens and the socialists who want to convert my province entirely to wind and solar, were living off wind and solar only.

      And before someone tells me about batteries, last February was the coldest month in 85 years. Got an 28 day battery supply?

      • joe: “Awfully glad I have natural gas to heat my home, even though the Trudeau carbon tax will cost more than the natural gas I’m using.”

        Yankee neighbor just South of you, here. Are you kidding about the tax costing more than the natural gas? If so, is it only a slight exaggeration?

        • In British Columbia, on an equalized monthly gas bill of $138.00 , $ 30.00 is the cost of the actual gas and the carbon tax is $38.00. The rest is infrastructure related costs and other taxes.

          Repeat: $30.00 vs. $38.00 carbon tax. If people only actually read the details of their bills.

          • Our monthly electricity bills in Alberta are the same. $26 for the actual electricity, total bill $185 including GST. Plus the $1billion income tax hit for buying out the coal plants for early shutdown.

            The transmission charges in Calgary are much lower, they have a couple of large CCGT power plants next to the city.

  10. I love the comment about Emma supplying the vision so that bovine engineers and other Gaia sceptics can receive the elusive direction that they are lacking in the greeny quest to save the world. One of the hallmarks of eco-saviors, idea people and others lacking in mechanical aptitude seems to be that they are convinced that an inability to do calculus confers the power to spontaneously generate solutions to world problems. Greta T. exhibited the same trait when she commanded the leaders of the world to mend her broken childhood. How about, study hard, practise diligently, seek out the guidance of competent individuals and someday when you have a track record of resolving complex problems, then perhaps be so bold as to give advice to others?

  11. In order to avoid Climate Change Stress, I emit as much CO2 as I can (and CH4, which transforms in CO2 and H2O anyway) :
    – good for vegetation, good for life.

    Emma, emit more CH4, that will destress you !

    • Far more appropriate would be:

      No individual snowflake ever considers itself responsible for the blizzard.

  12. My strategy seems to work – go surfing regularly in the allegedly warmer oceans – though to tell you the truth I’m just not feeling it right now. Australia is surrounded by cooler water and those damn corals refuse to bleach.

  13. I have a theory that environmental writers grew up on tales of Bambi and Peter Rabbit…………… without the growing up bit.

  14. Ya know, they have this “End of the World” meter or clock, well, where is the “Beginning of Sanity” meter? The NYT, sure as Gaia , doesn’t have one.

    • Exactly, there is nothing stopping them at all. They can live the utopian dream all they want. There are plenty of native tribes around the world that would welcome them.

      They use rich and powerful people as a scape goat so that they can blame them for all the ills of the world (in there mind).

      • There are plenty of native tribes around the world that would welcome them.

        And a few that would welcome them to diner, as in they would be the main course.

  15. Blame, blame, blame, blame, and blame some more, everyone but yourself and “present company.” Not your fault, not my fault. But WE can fix it. I’m not sure which is more awesomely mind-bending – the irony or the hypocrisy. Imagine Utopia and it will come to exist. When it doesn’t, blame someone else. Job security.

  16. Those of us who appreciate the value of CO2 can embrace our carbon footprints with pride and satisfaction. Not a hint of hypocrisy in sight! It’s such a relief not having a guilty conscience. At least about that.

  17. So if we’re supposed to build “dense but livable cities veined with public transport”, who gets thrown off their property via Eminent Domain to build light rail tracks and train stations, and how is the electric power generated to run the trains? If these trains are underground in densely-populated cities, who needs to police them to prevent homeless people from camping in them, so they don’t smell like an outhouse, and how to prevent people from jumping turnstiles so the city can recuperate its investment?

    What kind of “infrastructure humming away to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere” is Emma Marris talking about? The most efficient carbon-dioxide remover known to man is commonly known as a “tree”, which doesn’t hum but requires sunlight, water, and soil to grow, and space for trees is severely limited in densely-populated cities, where asphalt and concrete prevent their roots from receiving much water, and their sunlight intake is limited by being in the shadow of tall buildings.

    Less densely-populated suburban areas, with their tree-line streets and yards of private homes containing grass and/or trees, can remove some of the carbon dioxide generated by commuters traveling between the suburb and the nearest major city.

    Carbon dioxide is a relatively low-energy molecule, so that removing it from the atmosphere using an artificial physical or chemical process requires energy input. Unless the energy input comes from a nuclear power plant, the process is bound to generate additional carbon dioxide.

    • You misunderstand the thingy about “private property”. In their world the government owns everything and through their generosity let us have certain things.

  18. these people are talking as if Gene Roddenberry’s Star Trek universe was here and now. The last time I checked we had no dilithium crystals, no transporter beams, no synthesizers, etc. and not likely to have them any time soon. The apex of our technology now can fulfill the medieval alchemists dream of transmutation (with radiation side effects) of lead into gold but that is all. that is after 5 centuries and by accident, not intentional research. While their vision of utopia may be nice, without a cleareyed path it leads only to disaster.

      • Once you reach a certain age you stop trying to tap your heels together and start trying to keep your footing, already past that point. I like my fantasys written by professionals like Jerry Pournelle, RA Heinlein, H. Beam Piper, S.M. Stirling, et. al. These amateurs are just annoying.

    • What was the alchemist goal: Turning lead into gold. What is the Alarmist goal: Turning a leaden weather into a golden climate….

    • not my style to reply to myself but in this case I need to clarify a bit. Star Trek the tv show was an inspiration in the 60s, to me and many others, but much of Roddenberry’s writing was based on a Platonic theme of wise dispassionate philosopher kings ruling out of duty the Federation. Most of us missed that in the upbeat messaging and cool story lines.

  19. “and many of us must commute to work in or to cities intentionally designed to favor the automobile.”

    Apparently she’s never been to Seattle, or DC, or NYC, or…

    • Hmm, cities whose street plan was laid out more than 100 years ago (Boston, NYC, Philadelphia, Baltimore, etc) were “intentionally designed to favor the automobile”? I would have thought that folks who intentionally skipped math and the hard sciences would have at least studied history.

      • More like “intentionally designed to favor the pre-cursor to the automobile”. Reminds me of the story about The US standard railroad gauge being the result of Roman horses’ asses:

        The US standard railroad gauge (width between the two rails) is 4 feet, 8.5 inches. Why? because that’s the standard we imported from England.

        Why did the English build them like that? Because the first rail lines were built by the same people who built the pre-railroad tramways, and that’s the gauge they used.

        Why did “they” use that gauge then? Because the people who built the tramways used the same jigs and tools that they used for building wagons which used that wheel spacing.

        Why did the wagons have that particular odd wheel spacing? Well, if they tried to use any other spacing, the wagon wheels would break on some of the old, long distance roads in England, because that’s the spacing of the wheel ruts.

        Why did the wheel ruts on those old roads have that spacing? The first long distance roads in Europe (and England) were built by Imperial Rome for their legions. The roads have been used ever since. And the ruts in the roads? Roman war chariots first formed the initial ruts, which everyone else had to match for fear of destroying their wagon wheels

        So the next time you are handed a specification and wonder what horse’s ass came up with it, you may be exactly right, because the Imperial Roman war chariots were made just wide enough to accommodate the back ends of two war horses.

      • In recent years, in Seattle anyway, leaders have gone out of their way to make things MORE difficult for the automobile drivers.

  20. “…..public transport causing roadkill…”

    Perhaps the Greens would like to invent the personal tube transit system that they had in Futurama….?

    • I was thinking more along the lines of the tube monorail system in the domed cities of Logan’s Run. And, hey, bonus points for the Malthusians if they can implement the “life clocks”, also from Logan’s Run, that mandate your execution at 30 (or 21 in the novel).

  21. If you think this advice sounds familiar you are absolutely correct. Emma’s suggestion is very similar to the excuse Extinction Rebellion provided when challenged about the lifestyles of their celebrity anti-flying campaigners.

    Spot on! As soon as I saw the word ‘system’ I thought of that list of ‘celebrity’ hypocrites.
    The author needs to accept that there is a huge chasm between reality and fanciful wishes. We all wish for a better world but as adults we learn to accept that we are all bound by certain inescapable realities.

  22. “Imagine dense but livable cities veined with public transit and leafy parks, infrastructure humming away to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, fake meat that tastes better than the real thing, species recovering and rewilding the world, the rivers silver with fish, the skies musical with flocking birds.”
    Instead imagine communities scattered across the land each with an independent electric grid powered by a neighborhood nuke. Between the communities farmland or well tended forest with little underbrush. Industries scattered about. Almost all who can work from a VR at home. They are at the office and their fellow employees are there. Many doctor’s visits by VR. There will be a place to work near every neighborhood. Living at peace with the whole world.
    I’m not really sure either utopia can be built. It will take a lot of energy for energy *is* civilization.

  23. the rivers silver with fish, the skies musical with flocking birds

    Sounds like Garden Of Eden to me. However, I always thought that Garden Of Eden was a grass savanna with fruit trees and the occasional snake, not a high density city.

  24. Funny that pic. I was just at Animal Kingdom at Disney world in Florida yesterday and rode the Avatar boat ride. Disappointing waste of a fast pass. The Yeti rollercoaster I rode later made up for it though. Three days, three kingdoms, and now a day of rest. Lucked out with the weather.

  25. The NYT must be run by Greta, all fake news and clueless about the consequences of forced spending on stuff that does not work, to fight a problem that does not exist.

    The young people have been educated by Left wing Zombie teachers and university professor.

    They believe what they have been told and because have never experienced 19 percent mortgage rates or seen year after year of high employment.

    They are clueless about GDP, industries and how the stuff they buy is made, how countries pay for stuff, international competition, what happens when countries fail because of borrowing to much, the point of budgets, and so on.

    The Opinion piece writer repeats the party line.

    The solution to CAGW is more laws and treaties and of course electing the right Zombie people.

    From the article:

    “My point is that the climate crisis is not going to be solved by personal sacrifice. It will be solved by electing the right people, passing the right laws, drafting the right regulations, signing the right treaties — and respecting those treaties already signed, particularly with indigenous nations. It will be solved by holding the companies and people who have made billions off our shared atmosphere to account

    • “They are clueless about ….. how the stuff they buy is made, ..”

      This is the essential point. It explains (but does not excuse) their personal hypocrisy, and their ridiculous “remedies”.

  26. Check out Paul Beckwith on Youtube….he predicts that the arctic will be blue ocean by 2030….there are lots more chuckles and giggles and snickers from this “Professor”.

    • Thank you T. C. Clark. The old “hello this is paul beckwith? I think that’s who I am and it is my naptime” guy who looks even more bored than his listeners. Another whopper of this kind and maybe the bigger whopper is Peter Wadhams who does arctic sea ice and also ocean acidification and also appears bored with himself. Here he is trying to scare the shit out of us with ocean acidification and trying to stay awake. (Scroll down please until you see his bored but smiling face)


  27. Emma writes:

    “Our economic systems require most adults to work…”

    and then;

    “Imagine dense but livable cities veined with public transit and leafy parks…”

    So… if being required to work is strongly implied to be ‘bad’, who is going to build and/or pay for all these dense but livable cities?

    I am also curious to know if she believes the ‘Rich and Powerful’ deserved being openly mocked at the Golden Globes, or if she believes that some Rich and Powerful are more equal than others.

  28. Slightly OT, but my InstaG feed for my local bookshop – moderated by some well meaning but sadly woke uni student types – has informed me that they now have for sale “This Is Not A Drill – An Extinction Rebellion Handbook”.

    While I am sure it contains some lovely advice on where to buy not only the best glues, but also the best after care skin creams, one was also mildly of the impression that XR basically blamed the free market for, well, everything.

    So, that does raise the question as to why they are selling this book and not offering it as a free paperless download.

    • Reminds me of the annual knees-up held at our local horse racing track at Morphettville in Adelaide and you see all the posters around beforehand advertising it for psychics mediums and assorted fortune teller types and you wonder why they bother.

    • He he – there actually is some danger, even when you are holding a trained zoo animal which has had most of the aggression beaten out of it. Everything in Australia does its best to kill you.

      • It’s not that bad, mostly snakes. No grizzly, no cougar, no wolf. I stay clear of the water unless I can see the bottom. It’s red belly black snakes I don’t like, when an adult red-belly-black puts on its display all flattened out and hissing like a compressor you quickly grasp why the belly is such a fierce shade of red. There’s no confusion what that means.

  29. I’m convinced that all the best alarmists must be Catholic – they do guilt better than any other religion. Starting at kindergarten they force-feed guilt into the younguns and by the time they reach maturity they are primed for roles as activists righting every wrong in our society. The best example I can give anyone is the Pope – the climate change guru in chief.

  30. Yes, our daily lives are undoubtedly contributing to climate change. But that’s because the rich and powerful have constructed systems that make it nearly impossible to live lightly on the earth.

    No, it’s because the needy and spoiled DEMAND and CONSUME the comforts that the rich and powerful created to appease them.

    Our economic systems require most adults to work, and many of us must commute to work in or to cities intentionally designed to favor the automobile.

    … cities intentionally designed, once again, to favor the demand and consumer habits that cannot happen on the massive scale required, without the automobile.

    Unsustainable food, clothes and other goods remain cheaper than sustainable alternatives.

    Using an ill informed idea of “sustainable” as a way to sanctify certain consumptive behaviors above practical behaviors accommodated by the best market-driven technology is irrational, arrogantly presumptive, and ignorant of the realities that enable civilization, as we know it, to operate.

    • Well they haven’t explained to us how Pol Pot’s ideas worked out or even President Xi’s at present.

  31. The only dense, livable, city I have lived in was Honk Kong. 40+ storey apartment blocks, with shopping and transit services at the bottom. I prefer something with a bit of a garden. Emma can have her dense city. I will take a bet that she doesn’t live in a city as she describes or anything remotely like it. I bet she lives in a nice part of New York, close to central park would be my guess.

    “Emma Marris is an environmental writer and an Institute Fellow at the UCLA…”

    In my experience “fellows” get lots of money for doing very little.

    • “In my experience “fellows” get lots of money for doing very little.”

      That might explain her belief that there exists an economic system under which most people don’t have to work.

    • According to the internet, she lives in Klamath Falls, Oregon, which of course is nothing like a a dense city (population circa 22,000).

      • And she grew up in Seattle, Wa. which had a population of around 500k at the time. So she moved from a more densely populated city to a much less densely populated one. No wonder she wants to “Ditch the shame” – because she’s a huge hypocrite.

  32. Emma is just another Liberal idiot who thinks electricity comes from a wall plug-outlet and our food comes from a grocery store.

  33. “cities teaming with wildlife”

    There’s a scary thought. I wonder how that negotiation proceeds?

  34. “Our economic systems require most adults to work”

    Really? REALLY???

    Has anyone come up with an economic system where most people don’t have to work?
    This world, not some paper fantasy world.

    • Careful with your choice of words, “most people” includes children (too young to work), elderly (retired and/or too old to work), and disabled (unable to work) I think we can easily find a few places in the world where the unemployment rate (of working age people) is high enough that when you add in children, elderly and disabled you end up with a majority of the people not working. Those seriously aren’t the places you would want to be living in.

      More to your intended point, everywhere with a functional economy has the majority of their able bodied work-age adults working. Anywhere where this isn’t the case, doesn’t have a functional economy and as such would be least able to afford the utopia that article writer imagines.

  35. “cities intentionally designed to favor the automobile”

    Like most leftists, she has cause and effect reversed.

    Cities are designed to support automobiles because that is the transportation system that people chose. Despite the drug induced fantasies of your average leftist, nobody forced people to move to the suburbs and drive cars to work.

    On the other hand, leftists are all about forcing people to live the lifestyle that the leftist wants them to live.

  36. As for mixing wildlife and public transit, or for that matter other transit that is common in cities: In the parts of the Philadelphia metro area where there is wildlife and cars and transit other than cars such as trains, buses, subways and bikes, it’s mainly cars that are killing wildlife (and people). Some of the trains are underground or elevated, with little wildlife in their way. One public transit vehicle moves as many people as several cars in a given amount of time, so public transit decreases the number of vehicles interacting with wildlife even when the vehicles are on the street.

  37. “Imagine dense but livable cities veined with public transit and leafy parks, infrastructure humming away to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, fake meat that tastes better than the real thing, species recovering and rewilding the world, the rivers silver with fish, the skies musical with flocking birds.”

    I’m sorry, but I like to pride myself on most Beatles songs, but I can’t seem to recall those lyrics from “Lucie in the sky with diamonds”! Anyone know what illicit substance she’s taking & where can I get some? 😉 (Sarc off!)

  38. If these Green zealots, had any idea just how hard it is, living without modern reliable energy availability coupled with modern efficient food production and distribution, they would stop being so ignorant and stop being so stupid.
    I have experienced life without electricity, without oil or gas, and without any running water in the woodland hut I was born in, and lived in with my three siblings for the first six years of my life. Water was bucketed from the stream that ran along the boundary of our little woodland abode. The only nod to modernity was a battery powered radio. No motor car no motor bike, no mechanical assistance of any sort, beyond a bicycle. Lighting by paraffin lamp or candle, bed at sundown.
    It was hard, it was character forming and it made me aware of just how difficult life is without help from others.
    Message to Ms Emma Marris, Been there done that, take it from me, it is the closest thing to impossible you could imagine, no sane person would want to do it, or advocate it.

  39. The name of the place is Utopia. It will go the same way as all other utopias: into the dustbin of history.

  40. Anthony,
    I don’t know if this has been done before but as this lady is making a list I got to thinking about what I like about being a sceptic and would appreciate your readers help in compiling all their reasons and adding them to mine.
    I will start with a few of my own reasons and hope others will add to them.

    1. History is on my side
    2. I can laugh at the super sensitive anxious bedwetting alarmists
    3. I can have a guiltless sense of humour.
    4. I don’t have to have an opinion
    5. I don’t have to take a position on an issue
    6. I can change my mind based on available facts
    7. I am not stressed
    8. I don’t need an attitude adjustment
    9. I can buy shares in profitable companies that truely help the world to be a better place
    10. I can fly around the world without guilt knowing that my expenditure will be used to give someone else a real job and some will be spent on technical advances in numerous fields of endeavour.
    11. I sleep well because I am relaxed
    12. My grain crops are producing more that ever before because of higher CO2 making my future more secure
    13. My increased crop production because of the extra availability of CO2 is providing great quality grain for export thereby reducing starvation.
    14. I have the ability to identify BS on the ABC (I now call it the “Panic Station”)
    15. I do not have TDS, JDS or MDS. (Trump, Johnson & Morrison)
    16. The vast majority of my peer group and even the next generation are of a similar mind but none of us say it out loud.
    17…………..? More please.

    Over to others.


  41. 17. I can buy and install solar PV if it will save me money.

    18. I can see minus 34 celcius outside and not wish it was colder and snow drifts up to the power lines.

  42. “Imagine dense but livable cities veined with public transit and leafy parks….” The “rich and powerful” have “veined” our town with bicycle lanes on the side of roads. The area around the university is littered with them. I have never, ever, seen anyone on them. Ever.

  43. Imagine dense but livable cities veined with public transit and leafy parks, infrastructure humming away to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, fake meat that tastes better than the real thing, species recovering and rewilding the world, the rivers silver with fish, the skies musical with flocking birds

    Well her imaginary utopia must not be powered by wind (bird choppers) or solar (bird friers) otherwise the skies would be silent. Can’t be Hydro, as that would interfere with the “rivers silver with fish”, It can’t be nuclear either, as Nuclear doesn’t emit CO2, so there’d be no need for ” infrastructure humming away to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere”, so her imaginary utopia must be powered by fossil fuels. Imagine that!

  44. I say give them what they want.

    Turn of the energy aka electricity natural gas oil etc. Ya know all those evil things that are keeping them alive in them big cities

    Betcha by Feb. most of them will shut up.

  45. There is nothing stopping grown-ups concerned about 1degC warming since Wyatt Earp was sheriff of Dodge City to make decisions to reduce their *carbon footprint*, but of all the green people I now, just 1 rides a pushbike to work, 1 has an electric car and 1 family has gone off the grid. The rest seem to think the government can control the climate; well they can support Pocahontas, who wants to ban construction of new buildings, but why don’t climate candidates go the full Greta and threaten to ban air travel, etc? Wouldn’t that go down well with the hypocrites!

  46. How to Stop Freaking Out and Tackle Climate Change

    Here’s a five-step plan to deal with the stress and become part of the solution.

    Who needs five steps?
    You have two choices.
    1. Take a deep breath. Never exhale. Your stress will end shortly.
    2. Take a deep breath. Slowly exhale. Be glad you’re alive.

  47. In her “Imagine” Utopia I saw no mention of farms to grow the food to feed the densely packed sardines with their “leafy parks”.
    Will people be eating their chia pets?
    (I seriously doubt that a “chia cow” tastes better than the real thing.)

  48. High Priestess Emma Marris is offering all you “stressed-out” eco-zombies … religious absolution. So long as you confess your sins against Gaia … you will be … “forgiven”.

    Nooooo ooo … CAGW is NOT a religion. Nope. Not at all.

  49. Yeah. Okay. I have yet to meet a human being in my 67 years who actually did admit guilt for a sin he or she had committed. When somebody says, “I feel guilty,” he or she is actually saying, admire me for my exquisite sense of personal responsibility. And they are always “guilty” about something for which no reasonable person would blame them in the first place. Ask them to feel guilty about something they’ve really done (and might therefore deserve punishment) and they will tell you that that wasn’t their fault. (Stephen Harper, for example, wishes to apologize for the residential schools, but not for sending Canadian soldiers to die for nothing in Afghanistan.)

    I don’t feel guilty about climate change because I didn’t do it. Neither did anybody else, because no, human beings don’t have any appreciable influence on the climate. The insects probably have more to do with the maintenance of life on Earth than we do.

    • Probably wasn’t the best idea to put both those paragraphs in the same post, Ian, as it makes you look like you, in the second paragraph, are engaging in the behavior you described in the first (even though, in the second you aren’t “shifting blame” as per the first paragraph, but rather pointing out a simple truth).

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