Climate Change Racism, Leftist Style By James Reed

One thing the climate change activists pride themselves in is being woke, and Leftist in political values, not just on the environment. Thus, today you do not see environmentalists who oppose the gender agenda, for the values of the Left now flow through the entire system. For a time, there were Right wing ecologists, such as the later Garrett Hardin, but there is not a new generation, as any opposition has ben culled from the contemporary university system.

It is thus ironic that the Leftist, environmentalist attack upon fossil fuels, fuels needs to make fertiliser to produce food for the Third World, and fuel, will lead to mega-death, of the very people the Left proclaims to support. But, saving lives was never big on the agenda of the Left.

“Denying the world's poor access to abundant, inexpensive energy consigns them to perpetual poverty, unsustainable population growth, and negligible educational opportunities.  The policy exemplifies blatant racism disguised as altruism and exacts its toll on residents of the Third World, who are denied the opportunity to achieve wealth and political independence.

South Africa contains nearly 10 billion metric tons of coal reserves that provide 2.4% of the country's Gross National Product (GDP) and 77% of its power generation.  Despite plentiful natural resources, the country's electrical grid suffers from mismanagement and continual blackouts.  Yet the Biden administration is committed to paying the South African government 8 billion dollars to shutter coal production and replace it with green energy — an act of misguided intentions that will be borne on the backs of all but the country's elites.  South Africa has a GDP less than 20% of Germany, and its fragile economy administered by corrupt leaders cannot afford to pay the hefty subsidies required for green energy.  The German manufacturer of wind turbines Siemens reported that it lost nearly a billion dollars in the fourth quarter of 2022 and will require more subsidies from the German government to remain competitive.

I participated in adventure travel to the Third World for nearly 25 years and observed that a soft racism pervades the attitudes of fellow travelers who are sympathetic to climate activism.  They often possess substantial disposable incomes and a Rousseauian view of humanity that at once keeps them aloof from the local inhabitants and supports the opinion that those living in the most primitive, unspoiled conditions are to be envied.  It brings them joy to watch smiling children sing and dance when visiting rudimentary elementary schools.  But many of these children are malnourished, live a life of grinding poverty, and yearn for the promise of a better life than that of their parents.  A small carbon footprint guarantees a difficult, often miserable life — a life for which few Western visitors would trade.  

In 2015, my wife and I spent two weeks hiking Bhutan's Chomolari-Laya Trek.  Along the way, there is a narrow swath cut through the forest leading from a hydroelectric facility in the lowlands to remote villages in the Himalayas, where animal dung is the primary source of fuel.  Segmented metal poles and concrete, which support the power lines, are carried over steep, unimproved trails on the backs of human laborers, where they are later reassembled on site without the benefit of sophisticated machinery.  The environmental impact to the local area is minuscule and the benefits to the impoverished mountain inhabitants immense, but several of our wealthy, progressive Western colleagues viewed the felling of a few trees and a power line running through a primeval forest as an environmental catastrophe.

Bhutan, the land of the Thunder Dragon, is purported by some to be the happiest country in the world.   Its 867,000 citizens live in an area the size of Maryland, where life expectancy is 71 years, 161st in the world.  Its per capita GDP is less than $3,000 per year.  Enshrined in the country's constitution is the philosophy of Gross National Happiness (GNH), which in 1972 King Jimye Singye Wangchuck declared more important than the GDP.  His proclamation reflects the cultural values and Buddhist traditions of this insular mountain kingdom. 

Visitors to Bhutan, which boasts of a negative carbon footprint due to its robust hydroelectric capacity, are told its citizens are among the happiest in the world, although it rated 95th of 156 in the 2019 World Happiness Report.  Not surprisingly, Western countries with high per capita GDPs and large carbon footprints habitually score highest on the happiness index due in large part to ready access to plentiful, affordable energy. 

One only need look at the 9x18-meter mural of Greta Thunberg on a building facade in San Francisco to appreciate the unhappiness and pessimism of climate activists.  The near-religious, simplistic view that atmospheric CO2 alone controls the Earth's climate requires that the planet return to pre-industrial levels to avoid complete devastation.  But understanding climate science, as described in the Winter Gatekeeper Hypothesis, is an extraordinarily complex matter that does not lend itself to politically motivated, trite solutions.  There are, however, remedies to Ms. Thunberg's angst, if only she and her minions would listen.

Per capita GDP strongly correlates with energy use, which in turn is a predictor of increased life expectancy, higher levels of education, lower fertility rates, and improved stewardship of the environment over an extensive range of domains.  The education of women in particular has a dramatic effect on reducing the fertility rate.  For example, African women with high school educations tend to delay marriage and, once married, tend to consider the opportunity costs of bearing more children. 

The opposition to fossil fuels hurts poor people the most.  The argument that past colonialism makes it more difficult for the world's poor to escape poverty due to reliance on fossil fuels and limited access to green energy is based on ideology and distorted perspective.  Intentionally relegating millions to perpetual destitution and forcing them to damage the environment in order to survive is the sine qua non of racism driven by climate change theories and dispassion for human misery.”




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Wednesday, 24 July 2024

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