Obama’s phony climate speech titillates his base But omits the truth he won’t admit

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By Leon Kolankiewicz

Leon is an Advisory Board Member and Senior Writing Fellow with CAPS. A wildlife biologist, and environmental scientist and planner, Leon is the author of Where Salmon Come to Die: An Autumn on Alaska's Raincoast, the essay “Overpopulation versus Biodiversity” in Environment and Society: A Reader and was a contributing writer to Life on the Brink: Environmentalists Confront Overpopulation.

In a career that spans three decades, three countries and more than 30 states, Leon has managed environmental impact statements for many federal agencies on projects ranging from dams and reservoirs to coal-fired power plants, power lines, flood control projects, road expansions, management of Civil War battlefields, NASA's Kennedy Space Center operations and a proposed uranium mine on a national forest. He also has worked with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to develop comprehensive conservation plans at more than 40 national wildlife refuges from the Caribbean to Alaska.

The writer's views are his own.

July 1, 2013

Loyal liberal that I am – at least when I am not being denounced as a racist xenophobe by mass immigration zealots – I have been inundated in recent days with messages touting President Obama’s speech at Georgetown University on climate change.

The love fest from naïve, worshipful environmentalists has been so ardent – oh, The Anointed One ♥♥ is One of Us after all! – that I had unpleasant flashbacks to the 2008 campaign when a well-meaning but gullible swath of America swooned whenever candidate Obama strode into the room. And when the equally smitten Norwegian Nobel Committee awarded Barack Obama the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009 merely for showing up, like the kids who “win” trophies just for being on soccer teams.

One of these gullible activists from an environmental group gushed that President Obama delivered the leadership we need. His plan will:

  • limit global warming pollution from new and existing power plants,
  • advance energy efficiency programs, including higher standards for new appliances,
  • boost support for solar power and wind power, and
  • increase U.S. leadership in international efforts to combat global warming.

I was asked to thank the president, when I would prefer to harangue him for his hypocrisy.

Conspicuously absent from this sycophantic tribute was any mention or awareness of the Big O’s utter obliviousness to the other Big O – Overpopulation. Population growth accounts for virtually all of the increase in U.S. carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions over the last 30 years and will account for all of the pressure to increase emissions in the future. Because of increasing conservation and energy efficiency, our per capita carbon emissions remain more or less flat, so that only population growth is forcing aggregate national emissions upward.

If U.S. population grows 30-40 percent by 2050, then America would have to reduce per capita CO2 emissions by 30-40 percent just to stay even! This alone would be a monumental feat, while still maintaining a healthy economy, but woefully inadequate, since scientists say that humanity needs to reduce its aggregate emissions by 80 percent or more to avoid serious climate problems.

And make no mistake about it, Obama is pushing aggressively for U.S. population growth, just as he supports more domestic oil and gas extraction and more hydro-fracking for natural gas that releases so much fugitive methane that researchers  consider it worse for the climate than using coal, the worst, most carbon-intensive of the fossil fuels.

If Obama had really delivered the environmental leadership we need, he wouldn’t be actively foisting population growth on the country with his amnesty proposal and calling for increased long-term legal immigration. Yet that is exactly what Obama is doing, completely at odds with the need to stabilize the U.S. population. To my knowledge, he has never once uttered a word indicating knowledge of the overpopulation problem or support for efforts to address it.

Indeed, the opposite is true. A March 20, 2013 fact sheet issued by the Obama White House on what he called the economics of commonsense immigration reform declared that, “with slowing population growth and aging of the workforce, America needs more workers.” Slowing population growth represents progress, not a problem! To Obama, it apparently means stagnation.

In my June 4 blog, I belittled California Governor Jerry Brown’s concern for the environment as phony because of his simultaneous support for more immigration. I based my opinion on the late Earth Day founder Gaylord Nelson’s remark that: “It’s phony to say ‘I’m for the environment but not for limiting immigration.’”

By this standard, Obama’s conspicuous concern for the climate is every bit as phony asBrown’s is for the environment.

 

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