Steve Goreham has published a new primer that unmasks “sustainable development” fallacies. Outside the Green Box is previewed at Master Resource. Excerpts below:
Green Doctrine of Sustainable Development
Modern society is beset by green ideology, possibly the greatest delusion in recent history. Schools teach children that carbon dioxide is a pollutant, that polar bears are endangered, that population growth is harmful, that pesticides cause cancer, that energy use is destroying the environment, that warm climate is bad for humanity, and that crude oil is all but exhausted. Further, we can save the planet if we change our light bulbs, plant a tree, forego eating meat, and drive a Prius.
Green ideology is embodied in the doctrine of environmental sustainable development. Sustainable development contends that the growth in human population, production, consumption, and energy use over the last 200 years is “unsustainable.” For 30 years, proponents of sustainable development have warned that without radical changes to modern society, our planet’s environment will be destroyed, with the resultant decline of human civilization. To avoid the coming catastrophe, companies are told that they must adopt sustainable business practices
Climate Change Ideology
Over the last 30 years, climate change ideology became the core of sustainable development and the green movement. Most scientific organizations, most leading universities, most of the Fortune 500 companies, faith-based organizations, and the majority of the news media have publicly endorsed this theory.
Climatists call carbon dioxide a “dirty pollutant,” call coal trains “death trains,” and brand those who don’t accept the ideology “climate deniers.” Thousands of energy and climate laws across hundreds of nations aim to reduce CO2 emissions from transportation, industry, agriculture, and even light bulbs.
But from Chapter 5, scientific data shows that natural forces, not human emissions, dominate Earth’s climate. Water vapor, not carbon dioxide or methane, is Earth’s dominant greenhouse gas. Human industry contributes less than two percent to the greenhouse effect. Earth’s temperatures 1,000 years ago were naturally warmer than today and have been gently cooling over the last 8,000 years.
Contrary to warnings, history shows that today’s storms, floods, and droughts are neither more frequent nor more intense than in past centuries. According to satellite data, surface temperatures show no significant warming over the last eighteen years, evidence that the world’s climate models are in error.
Much of government policy, academic thought, and public opinion stands on fears created and promulgated by environmental sustainable development. The philosophy that humans are too many, too polluting, climate destroying, and profligate wasters of natural resources holds today’s society in a powerful psychological grip. Thousands of energy and environmental laws are justified on these misconceptions.
Energy consumption is not a villain. Nations that consume the most energy per person discharge the lowest level of air and water pollutants per person. Low-cost energy provides economic growth and generates capital for pollution control. Carbon dioxide is not a pollutant. Hundreds of peer-reviewed studies show that increased levels of CO2 result in faster and larger plant growth. The recent rise in atmospheric CO2 is actually greening the Earth.
Steve Goreham is a speaker, author, and researcher of environmental issues and public policy. He holds an MBA from the University of Chicago and a BS/MS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois. More at his website stevegoreham.com. For example, he provides a synopsis of Climate Facts including these topics:
Temperature in Perspective
The Greenhouse Effect
Icecap Melting and Sea Level Rise?
Stronger Hurricanes and Storms?
Droughts and Floods?
Polar Bear Extinction?
I haven’t read this new work, and will not, as I tire easily of hyperbole, innuendo and wild arm waving.
It’s unfortunate that Mr. Goreham has published yet another anti-green polemic, shouting in a dark room at the black cat that isn’t there. While the United Nations has a “sustainable development” program, this has nothing to do with widespread, principled and science based opposition to growth for the sake of growth, air and water pollution, aquifer depletion, corporate consumer capitalism and the obvious health and social ills created by all of the above.
Humans are indeed too many, too polluting, climate modifying, and profligate wasters of natural resources. Anyone with other than Polyannaish eyes can see clearly that the apex of human growth and development is rapidly depleting the very basis on which civilization is based. To all but the unrealistically optimistic, this is cause for concern, and action.
Goreham fails to distinguish between the social and political philosophy of “climate change ideology” and the body of observation leading to theories of climate change on our planet. It is true that observed climate change has its origin in natural cycles and processes, largely orbital changes in the relationship between the Earth and the sun, and the giant planets of Saturn and Jupiter. The worldwide obsession with climate change and global warming is a political and social phenomenon, not a Green or environmental concern.
The IPCC was organized to investigate the question, “If global warming is caused by human CO2 emission, then what governmental policies would be necessary to mediate human caused climate change?” The IPCC is not engaged in the scientific process of investigating the causes of climate change, it is developing policy recommendations based on the premise of human CO2 emissions causing observed climate change.
Goreham struggles mightily to avert his eyes from the painfully obvious problems of “growing population, affluence, production, and consumption [which] cause peak oil, deforestation, food and water shortages, rising resource prices, and shrinking resource reserves.” He lays concerns for these very effects of profligate growth and consumption at the feet of environmentalists, those nasty activists who seek to curtail growing human consumption such that all life may live and thrive.
Shame on us for our misdeeds.
One cannot expect any level of understanding of ecology, climatology, biology, evolution, or science for that matter, from a holder of an MBA and a degree in electrical engineering. Perhaps we would be better enlightened by Mr. Goreham’s views on the environmental effects of the business of electronics.
Thanks for commenting Michael. Your position clear, and I appreciate your distinction between misguided climate policies, while failing to care adequately for the environment.
My short synopsis does not do justice to Goreham’s full case. I do agree with Goreham that societies that use fossil fuels to develop do use some of their prosperity to lessen their impact on nature, though of course more can be done. It also appears that poverty, population increases and environmental degradation are related, so it is misguided to attempt to deny affordable reliable energy to underdeveloped peoples.
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The pertinent point is that poverty, population increases and environmental degradation are not “climate change” problems, so tying these important problems to dubious climate change projections is political opportunism at best and outright malfeasance in full reality.