October 2021 /// Vol 242 No. 10)

Features

OPINION: UN gives Biden a passing grade on climate – would Americans give him the same grade on the economy?

President Joe Biden – clueless as ever – is using the UN COP26 summit as an opportunity to tout “green energy” while ignoring the looming threat of a global energy shortage and pretending bad actors like China and Russia are holding up their end of the bargain.

Wayne Christian

AUSTIN – The UN Climate Change Conference known as COP26 began in Scotland on Sunday, Oct. 31. It’s appropriate that the conference commenced meeting on Halloween since there are very few things on Planet Earth scarier than a horde of environmentalists getting together to decide how to run your life.

COP26 is essentially a “progress report” for the Paris Climate Accords. It will be the first time the UN will “measure” how the agreement is doing, refresh climate mandates, and loudly sound the death knell for the fossil fuel industry. Predictably, President Joe Biden – clueless as ever – is using it as an opportunity to tout “green energy” while ignoring the looming threat of a global energy shortage and pretending bad actors like China and Russia are holding up their end of the bargain.

In coordination with COP26, President Biden and Washington Democrats are trying to quickly pass their partisan climate agenda in a massively bloated liberal spending bill. As-is, the legislation would almost certainly make the U.S. more like Europe with expensive green energy mandates and reliance on foreign fossil fuels, leaving Americans with more inflation, higher energy prices, and less national security.

While Biden and the UN presume the science of a climate crisis is settled, let us not forget that climate “chicken-littles” have been saying the sky is falling for 40 years. The UN climate models are constantly being “updated” or modified, and their wildly irresponsible climate predictions (like the starvation of 4 billion people during the 1980s) have not happened. That doesn’t sound like settled science to me.

Moreover, COP26 continues a celebration of the U.S. abandoning our own interests. The Paris Climate Accords mandate emission reductions that make U.S. energy uncompetitively expensive, while China plans to add 43 new coal-fired power plants and has recently told Chinese coal producers to produce as much as possible, amid growing energy supply concerns. Additionally, the National Economic Research Associates concluded that the accords could be an economic loss of $2 trillion a year, or about $15,000 a household, and would kill 6.5 million American industrial jobs all by 2040.

America, despite mainstream reporting, leads the world in the production of clean, affordable, plentiful, and reliable energy. In August, the statewide flaring rate in Texas was 0.64 percent, remaining near its lowest rate in years, according to Railroad Commission data. This means 99.36 percent of natural gas produced in Texas is being beneficially used to heat our homes, cook our food, and make everyday products. Nationally, the six major air pollutants monitored by the Environmental Protection Agency have fallen 77 percent since 1970, while our energy consumption grew 48 percent, our population grew 60 percent, and the economy grew 285 percent.

While President Biden and liberal democrats are busy in Washington, D.C., and Europe adding fuel to the ongoing inflation fire with climate mandates, American taxpayers are seeing seven-year high gas prices, a shortage on Christmas toys, and the costliest Thanksgiving meal ever. Given that oil is used to make more than 6,000 products, it’s not just gas prices that Americans will see rise but everyday items like toothbrushes, iPhones, shoes, medicine, and more. A recent CBS News poll highlighted that 60 percent of Americans view Biden as not focused enough on inflation and 37 percent having a poor outlook on the economy.

For now, we are lucky that we still live in a country that thrives on the use and production of fossil fuels. Oil, natural gas, and coal have lifted people out of poverty, fed the hungry, warmed the cold, healed the sick, and created a more stable world. In fact, mankind is more prepared and safer from climate change than ever before thanks to fossil fuels.

Environmentalists would have you choose a world between reliable energy and environmental progress—but that is a false choice. Like everything else in life, there are advantages and disadvantages to using fossil fuels. I argue that the advantages of having cheap, plentiful, and reliable energy vastly outweigh the disadvantages.

The Authors ///

Wayne Christian Wayne Christian is the Commissioner of the Railroad Commission of Texas.

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