No one is quite sure how much public money has been sequestrated in the name of ‘Climate Change’, except that it totals somewhere in the tens of trillions over the last two decades. We also know that this money hasn’t bought a single, fractional degree in ‘climate change’.
Global leaders want to set that figure in the hundreds of trillions.
If it turns out that our political leaders, scientific experts, and virtuous global bureaucracies lied about the whole ‘end is nigh’ scenario – can we have our money back?
Plenty of citizens facing down the current economic crisis would like to know when they can expect reparations for the financial harm done to them, their families, and future generations. We keep hearing activists use the hashtag #ClimateJustice – well, let’s see just how much ‘climate justice’ the ordinary pleb is entitled to once the next climate deadline expires…
Bloomberg reported in the beginning of July that it would take US$200 trillion to stop global warming, then proclaimed that this is a ‘bargain’.
The Sydney Morning Herald ran the headline with the figure of $300 trillion, in Australian dollars this time.
‘It probably won’t shock you to learn the world’s Net Zero pledges haven’t yet been followed by the hard cash, or even promises of hard cash, necessary to make them a reality.’
Which isn’t quite true. World governments have coughed up fortunes in pursuit of climate salvation – to be more correct, they have stolen it straight from the pockets of citizens. Searching for an official figure for Australia is impossible, with climate money tied up in a complex web of taxes, grants, punishment schemes, and price hikes.
There is a bright side for political leaders like Labor Prime Minister Anthony Albanese. Pretending to panic about the climate has given governments the perfect excuse to ignore the financial crisis caused by the incompetent handling of Covid.
‘Why are you worried about paying a few extra dollars for food? Don’t you know there won’t be any food unless you hand over more than half of what you own to us? Pay up or you are literally killing the planet!!!’
Or something to that effect.
It’s a very similar rhetoric to the ‘granny killers’ propaganda.
The figure for US$200 trillion comes from BNEF, a green-energy research team who were trying to calculate how much all of these ‘cheap’ renewables projects and carbon capture technologies would cost. They set a deadline of ‘carbon neutral’ by 2050.
It seems impossible to achieve a status of carbon neutral when your pitch involves replacing the world’s fossil fuel cars with electric ones – all 1.45 billion of them – along with constructing the who the heck knows how many charging stations. Not to mention the carpeting of the world’s surface in solar panels, battery farms, and wind turbines along with the physical grid to connect it all together.
The sheer volume of materials required for this transformation – let alone their constant cycle of replacement – has been approximated, not calculated. The figure of US$200 trillion is only a bargain if you can squint and peek behind it to the shadow of its real cost.
Will this spend save the world? More to the point, is the world even in trouble?
The geological record tells us the planet is doing just fine and, if anything, a bit more warmth will likely transform our deserts into tropical rainforests.
That seems to upset some scientists.
An article appeared a few days ago on Science Alert with the headline, A Giant Chunk of Peru’s Coastline Is Getting Greener, But That’s Not A Good Thing.
It went on to say that ‘twenty years of satellite data show that a stretch of coastal desert extending south from Peru’s north and into Chile is getting greener, but this is not good news’ and ‘this is a warning sign, like a canary in the mine’.
In 2017, there was an article in Global Citizen that talked about the greening of Africa as climate change persists. ‘One of Africa’s driest regions – the Sahel – could turn greener if the planet warms more than 2 degrees Celsius and triggers more heavy rainfall.’
One wonders if we might be able to finally feed Africa thanks to fossil fuels…
Mind you, Africa has bigger problems, with the East African Rift splitting the continent apart to the point you can see the cracks appearing. While nothing is going to float off anytime soon, this geological upheaval will cause an increase in earthquakes and volcanic eruptions in the region. Natural disasters that, no doubt, will somehow end up in climate change costings.
Taking a different approach, CNBC warns that climate change could ‘cost America US$2 trillion each year by the end of the century’ unless trillions more is thrown at the problem.
Into this scary number they add the natural cycles of floods, droughts, wildfires, and hurricanes. One wonders how accurate that US$2 trillion figures is from the Office of Management and Budget and whether it includes only the perceived increase in severity, or if it is relying on the massive increases in population put in the path of existing disasters.
Despite panicky studies taking as Gospel that natural disasters will ‘increase in severity’, real-world data appears to contradict this. In the US over the last 20 years, natural disasters ‘have declined by about 10 per cent’ according to Forbes, who took their data from the International Disaster Database. This is considered ‘very good news and completely contrary to conventional wisdom’.
Perception of an increase in natural disasters is probably the result of global communication.
100 years ago, if there was a flood in Bangladesh and you were living in Australia – it’s unlikely you’d hear about it. 300 years ago, there was no chance. Most of the world’s disasters slipped by unnoticed by all except those in the immediate area. Entire civilisations were wiped off the map, such as the lost kingdom of Tambora and the great empires of the pre-Christian world.
As the New York Times reported:
‘Ancient letters from the Hittite kingdom, in what is now modern-day Turkey, beseech neighbouring powers for shipments of grain to stave off famine caused by the drought.’
As the Hittite king wrote, ‘It is a matter of life or death!’ There were more letters begging for help, with another stating, ‘If you do not quickly arrive here, we ourselves will die of hunger.’
‘It certainly created problems of national security for the great powers of the time. Correspondence between the Egyptians, Hittites, Canaanites, Cypriots, Minoans, Mycenaeans, Assyrians, and Babylonians – effectively, the Group of 8 of the Late Bronze Age – includes warnings of attacks from enemy ships in the Mediterranean. The marauders are thought to have been the Sea Peoples, possibly from the western Mediterranean, who were probably fleeing their island homes because of the drought and famine and were moving across the Mediterranean as both refugees and conquerors.’
Entire major cities from the Old World sit under our coastal wars, flooded by rising sea levels that began shifting as the last Ice Age ended. This was not caused by human activity, but rather a global recovery process that remains ongoing, restoring the world to its warmer state.
While there is ‘consensus’ about reducing the world’s temperature to pre-Industrial levels, no one has properly explained why – in all the planet’s history – this is the temperature our planet must sit at. It certainly is not the temperature when human civilisation flourished, nor is there any indication that it’s the preferred temperature for rainforests. Instead, it is an arbitrary number picked to punish the Industrial Revolution and – by extension – Western nations that profited from their endeavours to better civilisation.
Claims that ‘large swathes of the planet will be unlivable’ are interesting when looked at properly, given this is already the case. The ‘unlivable’ sections of the planet shift around constantly – not only with changes in temperature but also the movement of continents drifting in and out of habitable climates.
The United Nations insists ‘the benefits that flow from these [climate change] investments dramatically outweigh any upfront costs’ and yet no one, absolutely no one has proved that we can change the climate. Whether we spend $300 trillion or a gazillion dollars, it is likely to have no impact whatsoever – or be undone immediately by a volcanic eruption.
How seriously can we take things like the New Climate Economy Report claiming that bold climate action could yield a direct economic gain of US$26 trillion through to 2030? That claim was made in 2018. It’s 2023 and climate change measures have done nothing but cost economies money with Net Zero returns.
Almost as ridiculous as UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ ‘welcome to the era of global boiling’ was the UN’s comment: ‘Replacing the costliest 500 gigawatts of coal capacity with solar and wind would cut annual costs by up to US$23 billion per year and yield a stimulus worth US$940 billion, or around 1 per cent of global gross domestic product.’
They then went on to say:
‘Responding to the climate crisis requires collective action from all countries, cities, financial actors, businesses, and private citizens. Among these concerted efforts, developed countries committed to jointly mobile US$100 billion per year by 2020, from a variety of sources, to address the pressing mitigation and adaptation needs of developing countries.’
These figures are three years out of date, but their money-grabbing antics have simply been copy-pasted onto 2030 and 2050 climate goals.
The World Economic Forum wrote that US$3.5 trillion a year would be needed to meet these 2050 targets, or a 60 per cent increase in current investment levels that would involve spending 7 per cent of your household income on climate change. Are you prepared to fork out for this?
Meanwhile, the World Bank Group proudly announced that it delivered US$31.7 billion to ‘help countries address climate change’. Where did that money really go? Into the hands of people in the third world? Or into the bank accounts of ‘renewable’ investment companies and dodgy governments?
With $300 trillion washing around, someone is getting rich. It is not us, and it is certainly not the planet. So, where is all this money going and can we have a refund?
Flat White is written and edited by Alexandra Marshall.