Global Warning about Global Warming
August 6, 1997
Finally, the U.S. Senate is starting to assert itself. By passing
the Byrd-Hagel Resolution 95 to 0 on July 25, it served notice on
President Clinton that the Senate is not going to be a party to
reducing the standard of living of Americans in order to accommodate
international agreements, third-world envy, or wacko environmentalists.
The Senate resolution, of course, wasn't that flamboyant, but it
was firm and stern. The Byrd-Hagel resolution warned Clinton not to
sign, because the Senate won't ratify, the treaty he is planning to
sign in Kyoto, Japan in December to require the United States, but not
most of the rest of the world, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The road to Kyoto began at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in
1992 when our government signed the Framework Convention on Global
Climate Change, which was then ratified by the Senate in 1993. It
called for the economically developed countries to take "voluntary
actions" to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (carbon dioxide, methane
and nitrogen oxides) to their 1990 levels by the year 2000.
This is one more example of how government programs called
"voluntary" soon morph into mandates. The Clinton Administration's
plan is to turn the voluntary goals into "legally binding
commitments" to be achieved by 2010.
The only realistic way to reduce emissions to a 1990 level is to
raise energy costs through taxes, i.e., add 60 cents a gallon to
gasoline, double home heating oil costs, and raise electric rates 30
percent. Of course, the liberals always want higher taxes.
The enormity of this goal is exceeded only by its inequity. The
treaty would bind the United States to reduce its greenhouse gas
emissions by 10 to 20 percent below our 1990 levels, while Western
Europe would be able to evade reductions by averaging among the EU
countries and because most of their energy is produced by nuclear
plants (not affected by the treaty). The 130 developing nations,
including China and Mexico, would have no limitations at all!
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see that U.S. fossil-fuel-burning plants would move out of the United States to countries where
there are no such restrictions. Whole industries and a million to a
million and a half U.S. jobs would move overseas, making us a non-industrialized nation.
The Byrd-Hagel resolution provides, as a separate test, that any
new treaty should be opposed if it "results in serious harm to the
United States economy." The Clinton Administration is trying to
finesse the treaty's harm by floating a plan for the "international
trading of emissions credits."
This is a scheme to allow rich nations that can't stay within
their limits to "buy" pollution permits from poor countries. That is
international hocus-pocus for forcing U.S. companies to finance their
foreign competitors, and of course would require another world
The reason why we are involved in these self-destructive
negotiations in the first place is widespread propaganda that
greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels (oil, coal, gas) are making
a hole in the ozone and causing "global warming." But there isn't
any scientific consensus that there is global warming other than
natural temperature fluctuations.
Furthermore, there isn't any scientific consensus that global
warming, if it does exist, is a big problem, or that humans caused it,
or that government should act now to remedy it. Most of the alleged
global warming occurred before 1940, before the widespread use of
automobiles which are the chief cause of carbon dioxide emissions.
Greenhouse gas emissions in the developing countries exempted by
the Kyoto treaty, such as China, Mexico, India, Brazil, South Korea,
and Singapore, are increasing rapidly. They are expected to surpass
U.S. emissions by 2015.
Let's be clear about what this Kyoto treaty is designed to do. It
would require us to deliberately reduce our energy consumption by one-fourth, causing a devastating effect on our standard of living and the
ability of a million plus U.S. wage-earners to support their families,
all on the basis of climate predictions that are at best controversial
and at worst no more reliable that the weatherman's guess of how much
snow will fall next winter.
There must be an agenda behind this irrational plan. Let's try a
Is the hidden agenda of the Kyoto treaty
- to promote the presidential candidacy of Al Gore, who has staked his political future
on a platform of prioritizing the planet above people, or
redistribute U.S. wealth and jobs to foreign countries because the
Clintonian liberals support income redistribution, or
- to con the
American people into accepting increased federal taxes, regulations and
Or, is the answer
- to reduce our standard of living because
other countries are envious of our automobiles and our single-family
dwellings that are heated in the winter and cooled in the summer, or
- to save face for the social scientists who have been predicting
climate catastrophe, or
- to provide politically correct "cover"
for the multinationals that want to move their plants to low-labor-cost
Asian countries, or
- all of the above?
Economic growth requires energy, and fossil fuels provide 85
percent of our energy. Tell your Senators that Kyoto is a no-no.