Rich Climate Activists Demanding Greener Luxury Goods

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

Private jet sales are up, but the ongoing Cashmere Goat shortage might cut into some of their other purchases.

Global Warming Threatens Luxury Lifestyles Of The Rich 

Ollie Williams
Senior Contributor Wealth Management
How European billionaires spend their time and money.

As London Fashion Week approaches this weekend, luxury brands talk about sustainability as if it were going out of fashion. But do their buyers really care?

Consumers of some of the most expensive luxury brands are also connoisseurs of the most polluting types of consumption available. And they’re now buying more than ever. 

Take private jets, on which any multimillionaire worth their wealth hops from Davos to Dubai. Despite “flygskam,” the new Swedish word coined for flight shaming frequent flyers, deliveries of new private jets are expected to rise 9% this year according to a report from Honeywell International. 

Deliveries are also expected of a further 800 superyachts this year, as the 5,000 strong fleet of these 24+ meter ships grows around the world. Each of these burns an average of 500 litres (110 gallons) of fuel an hour, according to Towergate Insurance.

Luxury consumers are being influenced by the young, who, says Sunshine, are more aware of their purchases, as well as celebrity culture. “With fashion you could maybe think a little bit before buying something brand new,” said Kaitlyn Dever whilst walking the red carpet towards the 92nd Academy Awards in a Louis Vuitton dress made from responsible silk satin.

“Global warming is effecting the supply of material everywhere,” says Cotton. Take the cashmere used in Johnstons of Elgin products, for example. It comes from Mongolia where a near 2% increase in the country’s climate since 1940 is spoiling grassland. Less grass means less grazing for cashmere producing goats.

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China’s habit of using Mongolia as a toxic industrial waste site might also have impacted the health of the goats.

Lets hope the rich sort out their eco-friendly cashmere shortage before they take delivery of their new private jets, it just wouldn’t do to have to turn up to an exclusive private soiree in Switzerland or Canada wearing last year’s goat fluff.

54 thoughts on “Rich Climate Activists Demanding Greener Luxury Goods

  1. A 2% increase in the [Mongolia’s] “climate”? And just how is that measured. Does “climate” come by the ton, or cubic foot, or watt-hour? If temperature is meant, is that 2% of Celcius, or Kelvin, or…..

  2. This is more pernicious than it seems. The true objective of the activists is to shut down consumption, and the easiest target is rich consumption. But attacking one attacks all, and that is their purpose. The attack is based on greatly exaggerated projections, no better than Madame Zina’s crystal ball. It isn’t about climate or environment. It’s about the new hair shirt. Until we become clear about this, of whichever party we are, short of the hair shirt party, we shall be responding to sucker punches, whereas we should respond to the core, with a clear no.
    It would help to make clearly known the lifestyles of the rich promoters of this climate mantra. From these, we’d see hypocrisy writ large, the Tesla in the photo, the Ferrari in the garage, the kayak in the pond, the yacht in Monaco.

      • said Kaitlyn Dever whilst walking the red carpet towards the 92nd Academy Awards in a Louis Vuitton dress made from responsible silk satin.

        Shouldn’t she be wearing sustainable sackcloth and ashes? Preferably, ashes made from burnt wood pellets imported from North America and used to power British power plants.

    • Many of the rich have also become rich ( or richer) lecturing the rest of us on what to eat, wear, drive, etc. I agree about the hair shirt, but it has a silk lining for those folks.

      • Greta is doing very nicely she won a few awards last year to the value of around $75K (not bad for a15 year old). She even turned down one because it was obviously going to get a bit hard to explain it.

        She will likely win this years Nobel which comes with a $1.1M payday lets see if she turns that down :-).

    • Rich people aren’t employed building yachts, jet airplanes nor luxury goods. Previous “tax the luxury products” have been repeatedly shown to backfire by only shutting factories and swelling the ranks of the unemployed.

  3. This is so true to form. DiCaprio and his tribe of idiots have got the followers all convinced they must starve in the dark, walk barefoot through the snow to decrepit workplaces and schools, and bow to the god of self-denial so that the priests of climate salvation can put another trillion dollars worth of fossil fuels into their recreational motorized transport to get to the next film festival, wine tasting, fashion show or hair appointment.

  4. Let us also examine the life of the people pointing the finger at the rich luxury consumers. Throw not ricks from glass houses.

    • Can I throw Mortys?

      And just who are the glass-house residents you speak of? The people not buying private jets, yachts, and multiple mansions?

  5. “Global warming is effecting the supply of material everywhere,”
    For quite some time now we have had to put up with everyone using the wretched word ‘impacting’, possibly because people were too lazy to discover the difference between ‘effect’ and ‘affect’. Now we have a glorious demonstration of this lack of awareness in the sentence quoted above. So are we now going to have to put up for years with people using ‘effecting’ instead of ‘affecting’ just because they are clueless as to what ‘effecting’ actually means. Perhaps Charles Dodgson (aka Lewis Carroll) was only too right all those years ago when he wrote, “When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.”

    • Ahhh, a kindred soul. I try to keep my grammar policing in the family. Oddly, perfect strangers don’t take it well when you point out what linguistic slackers they are. Regarding “impact”, my father, who was a copywriter for Young & Rubicam, sourly observed “Apparently, in English, there is no noun that can’t be “verbed.””

    • ‘Impact’, which should imply a single sharp hit, is overly misused because of society’s immersion in the dramatic tv/movie obsessed, action oriented view of life. So also the reporting of all events in the eternal present tense: ‘he runs’, ‘she says’, etc. There is no valuing of the past, no respect for the wisdom and experience of the elderly, no time for contemplation and reflection.

      • I don’t think noun/verb was the issue regarding impact. It was rather that impact mostly describes a very sudden and intensive event. Thus changing climate is a slow 30+ years process, where impact is a bit of an overstated term, which mostly serve to make great headlines. Headlines are selling news, so it will remain impact no matter how many objections we have.

    • The English language is dynamic – it evolves through actual usage. Like it or not, that’s how it works. Lexicographers from Johnson onwards don’t record “correct” English, they record English as written and spoken. One end result is that the ignorant uneducated masses (as perceived by the educated important (as perceived by themselves) elites) contribute most to the language. The most obvious illustration of that is the influence that Americans are having on the English language. The argument that it should of developed better, and that it would have done good if only it wouldn’t have done what it done, has already been lost.

    • Now, if you were complaining about “Effecting”, whereas it should be “Affecting”, I’d be fully onboard with you.

  6. So our affluent betters ‘demand’ greener luxury goods for themselves, while ‘demanding’ more sacrifice and penury from us mere mortals. I am SO motivated to comply!

  7. The climate crowd should not expect us to set the example for them.

    We travel in what we can afford and prefer and the global warming crowd should mind their own business and stop pretending to be all knowing.

    A car can go where a train or bus does not go, without being exposed to the flu and such things. Private transportation can change the destination, public transportation cannot.

    People including the rich buying things is good for business, jobs and taxes. Are they saying business, jobs and taxes are destroying the planet?

  8. I was surprised by the picture of the goats. I did not know climate change kept animals from growing up. I guess it can do anything.

  9. responsible silk satin</blockquote


    Is it responsible to breed silkworms in farms with a maintained temperature from 23-28C, boil them alive and then throw away the corpse just for a pair of silk knickers?

    Not that I've got anything against silk knickers.

  10. Whoa—climate hysteria porn—> …a few facts on cashmere not in this article

    When the Australian’s allowed their Merino sheep seed stock to be exported is
    when the Chinese/Mongolian cashmere quality went down hill. Raw cashmere became
    contaminated at harvest by the herders who had a wad of fine wool in their hand when combing the
    goats..they would rake some merino onto their combs then some cashmere from the
    goats and so on.. the handle on a cashmere sweater from earlier times vs today
    is very evident to knowledgeable hands..the new cashmere pills very quickly after being
    worn a few times for wife says there is no such thing as too much cashmere
    on her side of the closet. 🙂

    The spot market on raw cashmere skyrocketed a few years ago when the
    herds were sold for meat when the raw fiber prices crashed…they ate the goats..
    not climate change…—> some more facts

  11. A a frequent traveler to Mongolia for 11 years I assure you there is more grassland. Remember, Mongolia is 1/10th the size of Canada, with only 10% of the population, an exact mater in terms of population density. That means on average there are only 3 people per sq km.

    Mongolia has warmed significantly in the past 70 years – a major beneficiary of global warming. This has resulted in some melting of permafrost – a least down a foot or two – and an increase in grazing yield.

    As there are only about 45m herd animals – about 15 per sq km. A more common problem than before is locusts, believe it or not. They have to be controlled. A limiting condition on animals (and therefore the >25m cashmere goats) is the extreme cold that comes every few years in a “Zuud”. In happened about 18 years ago the temperature in the middle of Ulaanbaatar city dropped below -54 C.

    I’d say the return of MWP temperatures would see the Gobi Desert turn to grassland, and if not, then warmer still as in the Minoan when both the Sahara and Gobi were grazing lands.

    • Most people will not even notice that they said “since 1940″ ; they just see the 2% increase and think ‘wow, that’ a lot of climate for a place like Mongolia”.

      But to simplify, it means that in Mongolia the amount of Climate increase has been only 0.025% annually, on average. And when you spread that out over the 600,000 sq mi area of Mongolia it is just an insignificant and really small amount of Climate.

      And to put it into some proper perspective, I was in tiny Culver, Oregon (0.7 sq. mi. as compared to Mongolia’s 600,000 sq mi), a month ago and we had a 28% increase in Climate in a single day (before it leveled of and decreased again over the following week). And there were no deaths or injuries as a result, and no lingering negative effects.

      So, in the real world, it is reasonable to say that there is a bunch of excess capacity for Climate. Climate could double, maybe even triple, and in most cases there would be no harm.

  12. In terms of the way our governments seem to wish to treat us as regards the ‘climate crisis/emergency/catastrophe’ thing, the caption of the picture is wrong.
    It should be ‘nanny’ and ‘kid’.

  13. But I thought that goats were bad news for the environment because they tend to uproot the plants they feed on.

    But I suppose that cashmere goats are high-class goats and thus have more civilized eating habits.

  14. Hemp. Grows everywhere and fast, it’s robust and needs low amounts of water. Hemp fibers are comfortable, stronger than cotton, antibacterial and expensive, so you can feel superior. Oh, and it’s GREEN.

  15. “Cashmere is just one of the thousands of raw materials used in the luxury industry that could become unsustainable. Also at risk are crops such as cotton, vines and hardwoods as well as precious metals and stones. Plastic, like ivory before it, is becoming a taboo for luxury brands. Other materials might follow.”

    Your telling me:

    Plastic is the basic need of Forbes clientele. What ’till they place a no-plastics spell on all non-Forbes clubbers.

  16. “Cashmere is just one of the thousands of raw materials used in the luxury industry that could become unsustainable. Also at risk are crops such as cotton, vines and hardwoods as well as precious metals and stones. Plastic, like ivory before it, is becoming a taboo for luxury brands. Other materials might follow.”

    Your telling me:

    Plastic is the basic need of Forbes clientele. Wait ’till they place a no-plastics spell on all non-Forbes clubbers.

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