Oh, those lobbyists..
Bjorn Lomborg. Spare me. The media's favorite climate contrarian is back, if he ever went away, with yesterday's USA Today Earth Day Op-ed column.Let's start with the bottom line. Climate change needs to be dealt with. The politics of it range from terrible to impossible. Lomborg has used his voice and influence in a way that has made the difficult harder, and he ought to be profoundly embarrassed by what he is doing. History will judge this, and my prediction is that it will not judge him kindly.
He is very clever about it, too. Who knows, possibly even sincere. He says things that are really important, but consistently uses his arguments to muddy the water in a way that seems intrinsically calculated to trip up any forward momentum on climate legislation. That has certainly been the net effect of his participation in the debate. If he is hoping that warming will be mitigated by increasing cloudiness, he has contributed a veritable fog bank of arguments. This article, with its fraudulent setting of short-term concerns against long-term requirements, is all the evidence you need that he is uninterested in, or incapable of, understanding that the two things are not in some sort of essential opposition.
His argument veers from better air quality to fertilizer to cook stoves. He coyly implies that environmentalists are ignorant of past success, unconcerned about starvation, and trying to load the burden of carbon reduction onto the poor. This from someone who poses as a moderating voice. He says we need to wait for technological breakthroughs before we can make meaningful carbon reductions, without measuring that against the time we have to act, nor acknowledging how carbon caps and pricing encourage those very breakthroughs. Again, bottom line: he is making the difficult and necessary harder, and he should be absolutely ashamed. --Tom Toles
Other Syndicated Editorial Cartoons:
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