Leading on Paris climate treaty?

by PAUL DRIESSEN November 4, 2015

What an unpalatable irony. The 1783 Treaty of Paris ended the Revolutionary War and created the United States. The 2015 Treaty of Paris could end what's left of our democratic USA - and complete the "fundamental transformation" that the Obama Administration intends to impose by executive fiat.

Meanwhile, as a prelude to Paris, October 24 marked a full ten years since a category 3-5 hurricane last hit the United States.  (Hurricane Wilma in 2005; Sandy hit as a Category 2.) That's a record dating back at least to 1900. It's also the first time since 1914 that no hurricanes formed anywhere in the Western Atlantic, Caribbean Sea or Gulf of Mexico through September 22 of any calendar year.

Global temperatures haven't risen in 18 years and are more out of sync with computer model predictions with every passing year. Seas are rising at barely seven inches a century. Droughts and other "extreme weather events" are less frequent, severe and long-lasting than during the twentieth century. "Vanishing" Arctic and Greenland ice is freezing at historical rates, and growing at a record pace in Antarctica.  

But President Obama still insists that dangerous climate change is happening now, and it is a "dereliction of duty" for military officers to deny that climate change "is an immediate risk to our national security."

Meanwhile, the Washington Post intones: "Republicans' most potent argument against acting on climate change - that other nations won't cut emissions, so US efforts are useless - is crumbling. The European Union has had overlapping climate policies in place for years. China, the world's largest emitter, continues to fill in details about how it will meet the landmark climate targets it announced a year ago. World negotiators are set to convene in Paris in November to bundle commitments from dozens of nations into a single agreement that should set the world on a path toward lower emissions."

Right. A path toward less plant fertilizing carbon dioxide, to prevent "unprecedented disasters" that aren't happening (except in SimPlanet computer models), by stabilizing a perpetually changing climate that is driven by powerful natural forces over which humans have no control - under a 2015 Paris treaty that will inflict global governance by unelected activists and bureaucrats, bring lower living standards to billions, and initiate wealth redistribution of at least $100 billion a year to ruling elites in poor countries.

For once, President Obama wants America to play a leadership role, through a war on carbon-based energy that his own EPA admits will reduce hypothetical global warming by an undetectable 0.02 degrees 85 years from now. If we slash our fossil fuel use, he insists, the rest of the world will follow. It's delusional.

For once, we should lead from behind - instead of with brains in our behinds. A brief recap of what other nations are actually doing underscores how absurd and deceitful the White House, EPA and Post are.

European nations and the European Union have long claimed bragging rights for "leading the world" on "climate stabilization," by replacing hydrocarbon fuels with renewable energy. Their efforts have done little to persuade poor nations to follow suit - but have sent EU energy prices skyrocketing, cost millions of Euro jobs and made the EU increasingly uncompetitive globally. Now Europe says it will make an additional 40% emissions reduction by 2030, but only if a new Paris agreement is legally binding on all countries.

However, two months ago, China, India and Russia refused to sign a nonbinding US-sponsored statement calling for greater international cooperation to combat hypothetical warming and climate change. And virtually all developing countries oppose any agreement that calls for binding emission targets or even "obligatory review mechanisms" of their voluntary efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

What they do want is a treaty that guarantees $100 billion per year for climate change "mitigation, adaptation and compensation," plus modern energy technologies given to them at no cost. And that appears to be only the opening ante. India environment minister Prakash Javadekar recently said "the bill for climate action for the world is not just $100 billion. It is in trillions of dollars per year." Developed nations are "historically responsible" for climate change, he argues, and must ensure "justice" for developing countries by fully funding the Green Climate Fund. India alone must receive $2.5 trillion!

So far, pledges to the fund total just $700 million - and Prime Minister David Cameron has said Britain would provide a one-time contribution of only $9 million. He has called renewable energy "green crap" and plans to end all "green" subsidies by 2025, to reduce electricity prices that have sent millions of families into energy poverty and caused the loss of thousands of jobs in the UK steelmaking sector.

Germany's reliance on coal continues to rise; it now generates 44% of its electricity from the black rock - more than any other EU nation. In Poland, Prime Minister Eva Kopacz says nuclear energy is no longer a priority, and her country's energy security will instead focus increasingly on coal.

But it is in Asia where coal use and CO2 emissions will soar the most - underscoring how completely detached from reality the White House, EPA and Washington Post are.

China now gets some 75% of its electricity from coal. Its coal consumption declined slightly in 2014, as the Middle Kingdom turned slightly to natural gas and solar, for PR and to reduce serious air quality problems. However, it plans to build 363 new coal-fired power plants, with many plants likely outfitted or retrofitted with scrubbers and other equipment to reduce emissions of real, health-impairing pollution.

India will focus on "energy efficiency" and reduce its CO2 "emission intensity" (per unit of growth), but not its overall emissions. It will also boost its reliance on wind and solar power, mostly for remote areas that will not be connected to the subcontinent's growing electrical grid anytime soon. However, it plans to open a new coal mine every month and double its coal production and use by 2020.

Pakistan is taking a similar path - as are Vietnam, the Philippines and other Southeast Asian nations. Even Japan plans to build 41 new coal-fired units over the next decade. Overall, says the International Energy Agency, Southeast Asia's energy demand will soar 80% by 2040, and fossil fuels will provide some 80% of the region's total energy mix by that date.

Africa will pursue a similar route to lifting its people out of poverty. No more solar panels on huts. The continent has abundant oil, coal and natural gas - and it intends to utilize those fuels, while it demands its "fair share" of free technology, "capacity building," and climate "reparation" money.

During the 2011 UN climate conference in Durban, all nations agreed that the next treaty would have legally binding emission targets and mandatory reviews of emission reduction progress. They also set up the Green Climate Fund wealth redistribution scheme. Now those CO2-reduction pledges are in history's dustbin, because developing nations believe they have the upper hand in any climate negotiations.

They're probably right. President Obama told 60 Minutes his definition of leadership is "leading on climate change," and he desperately wants a legacy beyond his Iran, Iraq, Syria, Russia, Ukraine, Bowe Bergdahl and economic disasters. Moreover, Western nations have created a climate monster and Climate Crisis Industry, which must be appeased with perpetual sacrifices: expensive, unreliable energy, fewer jobs, lower living standards and more dead people. No wonder Asian and African countries expect to get trillions of dollars, free energy technology, and a free pass from any binding commitments.

Voters, consumers, elected officials and courts must wake up and take action. House Speaker Paul Ryan, members of Congress, governors, business leaders and presidential candidates need to learn the facts, communicate forcefully, repudiate destructive energy and climate policies - and let the world know the Senate will reject any Obama treaty that binds the USA to slashing emissions and transferring its wealth.

Above all, they must debunk, defund and demolish the mountains of anti-fossil fuel, anti-job, anti-growth, anti-family regulations that Obama & Co. have imposed - or plan to impose before they leave office - in the name of preventing a climate crisis that exists only in their minds and models. 

Paul Driessen is senior policy advisor for the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (www.CFACT.org) and author of Eco-Imperialism: Green power - Black death.


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