Environmentalism: A new report calls the lie on the grand Paris climate change treaty. None of the promised cuts in CO2 emissions that 200-plus countries made will come close to preventing a climate "catastrophe." And many of the industrialized nations aren't even living up to the promises they did make.
Two years ago, when the Paris agreement took effect, then-President Obama declared that "history may well judge it as a turning point for our planet."
It was a turning point in the level of empty rhetoric, perhaps. But it won't make a bit of difference to the planet.
This farce was made abundantly clear in an annual report by Climate Transparency, an international group focused on the G-20 nations.
What did it find? "None of the G-20 (emissions targets) is in line with the Paris Agreement." The report shows an enormous gap between what the countries have pledged to do, and the far lower CO2 emissions levels that the U.N. says are needed to keep the planet from warming by 2 degrees Celsius.
In other words, even if every country lived up to their Paris pledges, it wouldn't come close to preventing "catastrophic warming."
It gets worse. As the report shows, most G-20 countries aren't on track to meet the modest greenhouse gas reductions they pledged to achieve by 2030.
As the Climate Transparency report notes, the EU "is not on track to meet its 2030 target." Nor is Mexico, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Japan or Turkey.
A number of G-20 countries actually saw their emissions increase in 2017, including Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Japan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Turkey.
Saudi Arabia's emissions will likely double by 2030, compared with 2014. Turkey continues to increase coal-power capacity even though it "runs strongly counter" to its pledges. Japan also has several coal plants in the pipeline. Brazil's deforestation rate has increased, despite its Paris promises to the contrary. Russia's "target is so weak that it would not require a decrease in (greenhouse gas) emissions from current levels."
And, to top it off, CO2 emission in China, already the world's largest emitter, will likely continue to increase until 2030, the report finds. It notes that coal consumption in China "increased again in 2017."
Faulty Doomsday Scenarios
Longtime IBD readers know that we are highly skeptical of all the climate change doomsday scenarios. They're all based on 100-year forecasts made by computer models that have trouble predicting what's already happened. And then there's the fact that climate scientists keep getting caught fudging numbers and making basic math errors. The latest involves a highly publicized study on ocean warming. These errors, by the way, always seem to go in one direction: toward making global warming look more ominous. (Related: Is Global Warming a Hoax? Climate Change Facts and Fiction.)
But even if the dire prediction environmentalist make is true, trying to cut CO2 emissions to prevent it is pointless. As we noted in this space recently, the U.N. says global CO2 emissions must be cut in half within 12 years, and reduced to zero in 32 years.
It should be abundantly clear now that not a single G-20 nation is taking the climate change issue seriously — no matter how much they preach about it, and no matter how many empty promises they make.
A Better Way to Deal with Climate Change
That's fine by us, since we think it's a waste of money. President Trump was right to pull the U.S. out of this farce rather than lend it any more undue credibility.
There is a better and far more sensible and frugal approach to deal with "climate change." Forget about wasting money in a futile attempt to quickly decarbonize every economy on the planet. Instead, deal with localized changes if they ever occur. Adaptation to hostile climates is something humanity has shown an amazing ability to achieve, even without modern technology.
The only drawback to this approach is that politicians won't be able to pat themselves on the back for "saving the planet."