First they came for the cars. Then the gas stoves. Next was meat and dairy products. The latest on the chopping block? Wood-fired pizza. These types of tactics grab the headlines, but make no mistake: climate alarmism courses through the veins of the highest levels of government leaders and regulators.
As President Joe Biden would say, “I’m not joking, folks.”
Give Biden credit for one thing: he has been honest about his intentions. As garbled as his public remarks can be, Biden has left no doubt as to where he stands on the climate debate.
As president-elect, he listed climate change as one of the four most pressing threats facing our nation. As president, he called for a net zero emissions economy by 2050, going even further than his old boss Barack Obama. Facing a tough reelection and a restless liberal base, he has no incentive to change course.
Should the climate crew get its way, the consequences extend far beyond pizza or steaks (as unpleasant as that may be).
In May 2021, the International Energy Agency (IEA) publicized a report, “Net Zero by 2050: A Roadmap for the Global Energy Sector.” It was portrayed as a roadmap for Biden and other climate zealots.
Because of its noble-sounding intentions and a sympathetic mainstream media, the preposterous nature of a world without carbon rarely gets the scrutiny that it deserves.
For these reasons, the RealClearFoundation asked the Energy Policy Research Foundation (EPRF) to analyze the feasibility and consequences of a carbon-neutral world.
The results of the meticulous 92-page report weren’t pretty.
First, the report examines some of the more unreasonable assumptions. For example, the IEA plan is based on China, the world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases, also embracing the wisdom of going carbon-neutral, beginning in 2021. One immediate problem: China was producing two new coal plants per week in 2022. Addressing energy before a speech to the Communist Party Congress last fall, President Xi Jinping was focused on “getting the new before discarding the old.”
Second, to make up for fossil fuels (which account for 80% of the world’s energy supply), the world needs more electricity — a lot more electricity. In fact, global power supply needs to increase from less than 20% of all energy use to 50% by 2050.
Of course, setting aside feasibility questions, the consequences would be dire and all too recognizable. Soaring inflation. Spikes in gas prices as supply and production are constricted. More land gobbled up for wind and solar farms. An increased reliance on OPEC+ monopolizing the world’s oil supply, even as high as 82%, placing our nation’s geopolitical security in the hands of nations who wish us harm. If this sounds familiar, it is: it’s what we are going through right now because of bad decisions coming out of Washington, D.C.
These are the stakes as our next presidential election kicks off. On the Democratic side, the incumbent, Biden, has made his green positions clear. Facing a stronger-than-expected primary challenge from environmental activist Robert Kennedy, Jr., he has no incentive to change course.
Meanwhile, the Republican side is taking shape. More than 10 candidates have announced. Still others are waiting in the wings.
During the Biden administration, American families have grown painfully aware of the role of energy in their lives. A series of domestic policy decisions surrendered American energy independence, contributed to 40-year-high inflation, and drove the price of a gallon of gasoline north of $5 per gallon.
Power The Future, the nonprofit organization that I run, recently issued a survey to each declared candidate. Our goal is to better understand the respective visions for our energy future. Our hope is to jump-start a productive and meaningful conversation.
One thing is clear: climate zealots have their plan. Groups like the International Energy Agency aren’t shy about where they want us to go. They are well organized and have unlimited financial resources.
We need to be prepared to fight back with facts, figures, and a roadmap of our own. Otherwise, a future world without carbon is not out of the question. As delicious as wood-fired pizza is, the lack of it surely won’t be the worst problem we’re facing.
Daniel Turner is the founder and executive director of Power The Future, a national nonprofit organization that advocates for American energy jobs. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @DanielTurnerPTF.