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Daily Briefing:TACKLING CLIMATE CHANGE SMARTLY (April 29, 2021)

Table of Contents:

Bjorn Lomborg: This Earth Day Let’s Replace Alarmism With Smarter Policy:  Bjorn Lomborg, Financial Post, Apr. 22, 2021

“The evidence actually shows that climate-related disasters are killing far fewer people than ever before.”

This Earth Day, dramatic warnings about climate change will be ubiquitous. At his climate summit, U.S. President Joe Biden will undoubtedly repeat that global warming presents an “existential threat.”

But most of the hype will be vastly exaggerated. This pervasive climate alarmism is the culmination of persistent eco-anxiety over the past few decades. Already in 1982, the United Nations was predicting that, along with other environmental concerns, climate change could cause worldwide “devastation as complete, as irreversible as any nuclear holocaust” by the year 2000. Needless to say, that didn’t happen.

Today, almost every catastrophe is blamed on global warming, and we are being told that we must radically change the entire world until 2030 to avoid the apocalypse. Such irresponsible exaggerations are destroying our ability to make sensible decisions for the future. The evidence actually shows that climate-related disasters are killing far fewer people than ever before. Over the past century, the number of dead from floods, droughts, storms, wildfire and extreme temperatures has dropped by an incredible 98 per cent.

Opinion: Net-zero Won’t Cure The Climate But It May Kill Canada: Ian Clark, Financial Post, Apr. 21, 2021

“What few recognize, however, is that we are already over 80 per cent green with respect to carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. This is primarily due to our abundance of hydro and nuclear power.”

Last November the federal government introduced its Net-Zero Emissions Accountability Act, which establishes our pathway towards reaching that goal by 2050. But don’t hold your breath. It took a full decade to build 12.5 km of electric light rail in Ottawa, arguably the largest green-energy project in Canada over that time. To electrify the rest of Canada’s transportation sector in three decades, as well as our industrial and domestic energy sectors, the new Act starts by convening an advisory board to consult with Canadians on the best pathways to this target . . . tick tock.

Natural Resources Canada says Canadian electrical use is 600 terawatt hours (TWh or trillion watt-hours) annually. What few recognize, however, is that we are already over 80 per cent green with respect to carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. This is primarily due to our abundance of hydro and nuclear power. Nuclear is arguably our greenest source of electricity. It produces essentially no CO2; it has by far the best safety record; and we know how to safely manage nuclear waste. As for wind, despite massive subsidies it currently contributes only four per cent to our grid. It remains intermittent, off-peak and low-grade electricity, only marginally better than solar.

How a Physicist Became a Climate Truth Teller: Holman W. Jenkins, Jr., WSJ, Apr. 16, 2021

“The report was written more to persuade than to inform. It masquerades as objective science but was written as—all right, I’ll use the word—propaganda.”

Barack Obama is one of many who have declared an “epistemological crisis,” in which our society is losing its handle on something called truth.

Thus an interesting experiment will be his and other Democrats’ response to a book by Steven Koonin, who was chief scientist of the Obama Energy Department. Mr. Koonin argues not against current climate science but that what the media and politicians and activists say about climate science has drifted so far out of touch with the actual science as to be absurdly, demonstrably false.

Climate Change and Israel’s National Security: Colin Price, INSS Insight No. 1397, October 29, 2020

“As in the Mediterranean region as a whole, Israel too has shown significant temperature changes over the last few decades, and the trend is expected to continue.”

There is clear evidence that the Earth’s climate is changing, and we are leaving our “comfort zone” of the Holocene geological era that has resulted in fairly constant climatic conditions on Earth for the last 10,000 years. This is the period in which our civilizations developed around the globe, with fairly constant temperatures, regular rainfall patterns, and stable sea levels. We are now rapidly leaving the Holocene era and entering what some call the Anthropocene, a new climate era influenced by the human race. Since the industrial revolution (~1750) not only has the world population grown from less than 0.5 billion people to more than 7 billion today, but the level of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere today is the highest they have been in at least 1 million years. It is true that the Earth has undergone past ice ages and interglacial warm periods (even warmer than today) over periods of hundreds of thousands of years, but our civilizations did not exist in those periods, and hence if we are focused on the impact on humanity, such analogies are not relevant, and even misleading.

When looking at the risks from climate change in the Middle East, we must consider three categories of risk: the severity of future hazards (e.g., wildfires, heat waves, drought, flooding, sea level rise); the exposure to these hazards (e.g., population, physical infrastructures, natural resources); and vulnerability vis-à-vis these hazards (e.g., our ability to adapt to such hazards, public resilience, government support).


For Further Reference 

Is Israel Burying Its Head In Sand As Climate Change Makes Mideast A Hot Mess?:  Sue Surkes, Times of Israel, Mar. 11, 2021Sometime in the not-too-distant future, scientists predict that global temperatures may rise as much as 4 degrees Celsius, or even higher, on average. By 2100, the sea level is expected to rise between 0.2 meters in a best-case scenario to 2.5 meters in an extreme one, depending on efforts to curb emissions.

Israel Can No Longer Ignore Climate Change Threat:  Prof. Adi Wolfson, Ynet News, Dec. 5, 2020 After an exceedingly hot summer, Israel’s rainy season finally got underway last month.

Climate Change: Israel Aims To Reduce 80% Greenhouse Gas Emissions By 2050:  Business Standard, Apr. 19, 2021The Israeli Ministry of Energy has announced a national plan which includes a main target of reducing 80 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

Terence Corcoran: Read This Book, Then Forget Climate Panic:  Terence Corcoran, Financial Post, Apr. 23, 2021 The floods of catastrophic projections and raging wildfires of extreme policy initiatives must, at some point in the evolution of humankind, come to an end. Not today, that’s certain, as U.S. President Joe Biden’s virtual climate summit gives global politicians a platform to spread additional fear and even more extreme policies to rid the world of carbon emissions.

Beefless Journalism:  Editorial Board, WSJ, Apr. 28, 2021Beef is off the menu at Condé Nast. The editors of its food publication Epicurious announced Monday they would no longer publish recipes, articles, social media, or newsletters featuring beef.

Additional Readings:

Who Tells the Truth About Climate Change?:  WSJ, Apr. 23, 2021Regarding Holman W. Jenkins, Jr.’s

Israel Temperature Projections By 2100: Yizhak Yosef, Israel Meteorological Service, Sept. 11, 2020

On Behalf Of Environmentalists, I Apologize For The Climate Scare:  Michael Shellenberger, Quillette, June 20, 2020


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