Will President-elect Donald Trump continue to promote a realistic approach to climate change and keep his promise to withdraw America from the Paris Agreement? Or will he follow the sad example of Stephen Harper, the former conservative prime minister of Canada, who campaigned against the climate scare but changed sides after being elected?
Following Trump’s meeting on Monday with former Vice-President Al Gore, climate realists, those of us who oppose Gore’s radical agenda, have good reason to be concerned.
Leaving Trump Tower in Manhattan, Gore said, “I had a lengthy and very productive session with the president-elect. It was a sincere search for areas of common ground… I found it an extremely interesting conversation, and to be continued.”
Gore also met with Trump’s eldest daughter, Ivanka, who is known to be encouraging her father to shift his stance on climate change. Politico reported on December 1 that “Ivanka wants to make climate change one of her signature issues.”
It is not as if Trump has been a consistent opponent of global warming hysteria. Unlike Harper, who was a long-time conservative and climate realist before his conversion to political correctness, Trump was a registered Democrat 2001 to 2008, and a major donor to the Clinton Foundation, which identifies climate change as its first “issue area.”
In 2009 Trump, along with Ivanka, Donald Junior and Eric Trump, signed an open letter to President Obama and Congress supporting “measures to control climate change.” Doing so is a physical impossibility. The letter, published in the New York Times December 6, 2009, implored:
“Please don’t postpone the Earth. If we fail to act now, it is scientifically irrefutable that there will be catastrophic and irreversible consequences for humanity and our planet.”
In 2014, the Trump Foundation gave $5,000 to Protect Our Winters, an Olympic snowboarder’s climate change activist group. And his hotel in Ireland cited “global warming and its effects” as a reason for a permit application to construct a seawall beside its golf course.
Environmental activists and their allies in the scientific community and the press are already working hard to make it as uncomfortable as possible for Trump to continue his current skeptical approach to climate change. Indeed, an avalanche of climate alarmism is being directed at the president-elect.
* November 17: An
Yet, the 2013 report of the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change cited hundreds of research papers published in leading science journals, demonstrating that today’s climate change is nothing to fear. In particular, they concluded that “neither the rate nor magnitude of the reported late twentieth century surface warming (1979–2000) lays outside normal natural variability, nor was it in any way unusual compared to earlier episodes in Earth’s climatic history.”
Current climate change is so slow – 1.5 degrees between 1880 and 2012, according to the United Nations – that we have plenty of time to properly consider alternative points of view on this complex topic.
* November 30: The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) released an open letter it had coordinated to Trump and Congress. The 2,300 scientist endorsers worried that, without adequate research resources, “we will be less prepared to limit the impacts of increasing extreme weather.”
This too is misleading. The NIPCC report explained “The commonly held perception that twentieth century warming was accompanied by an increase in extreme weather events is a misconception fostered by excessive media attention, and has no basis in facts.”
* December 2: League of Conservation Voters called on Ivanka, Donald Junior and Eric to remember the open letter on climate change they signed in 2009.
* December 6: Over 800 energy and earth science researchers signed an open letter to Trump urging him to “take immediate and sustained action against human-caused climate change.”
The letter is riddled with mistakes. Besides the UCS extreme weather blunder, they erroneously labelled plant-fertilizing carbon dioxide as “carbon pollution.” They claim the science backing the scare is “unequivocal,” a claim that is irrational in any scientific endeavor and especially one this immature. They said that “virtually all climate scientists” disagree with Trump, an assertion easily disproved by the NIPCC reports, dozens of open letters and other documents endorsed by leading climate experts, and a statement by 31,487 American scientists expressing extreme doubt about manmade climate cataclysms.
Backing all this up is the continuous global warming drum beat from mainstream media. The National Geographic Society provided a good example in “The Global Dangers of Trump’s Climate Denial,” in which they (erroneously) claimed that “Trump’s stance on climate change runs counter to physical evidence, near-universal scientific consensus, and analyses by military experts and the U.S. Department of Defense.”
The press further skews the issue by exaggerating any evidence that Trump is changing sides on global warming. “The Left wants to drive wedges between the president-elect and his base by spinning anything he says as ‘retreating from campaign promises,’” Heartland Institute President Joe Bast explained.
A good example followed Trump’s November 22 interview at the New York Times. Sensibly, he sought to avoid conflict with his influential hosts by saying that he was going to “look at” pulling out of the Paris Agreement and America’s position as a world leader in confronting climate change. He had “an open mind” to such actions, Trump told the Times editorial staff.
But editors from the Times, the London-based Guardian
The Week even headlined its coverage, “Donald Trump changes his mind on climate change…” The Australian similarly proclaimed: “Donald Trump backflips on prosecuting Hillary, climate change, Obama.”
In a futile attempt to appease climate activists, and in the absence of significant pressure from conservatives, Canada’s Harper ended up supporting the climate scare he previously opposed. He made greenhouse gas reduction pledges that Canada had no chance of keeping without destroying its economy. In the process, he wasted billions of dollars and sacrificed thousands of jobs.
Climate realists must do everything in their power to make sure this does not happen in the USA. Besides holding Trump’s feet to the fire whenever he backslides, we must continue to promote the solid science he needs to justify and maintain his current position.
The president-elect must be convinced to make full use of reports such as those of the NIPCC, to demonstrate that much of what activists and the press say about climate change is simply wrong.
Otherwise, history will repeat itself – and like Harper and both President Bushes, Trump will yield to the aggressive climate movement, bringing disaster to the United States, and indeed to all of the free world.