A Free-Market Energy Blog

Climate Policy vs. Social Justice (‘Bloomberg Green’ decries rollbacks)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- March 21, 2024

“Apologies are in order from Bloomberg Green. In terms of social justice, why hurt the average person as consumer, ratepayer, and taxpayer?”

Trump’s Green-Bashing and Europe’s Right Put Climate Goals at Risk,” write Laura Millan, Zahra Hirji, Olivia Rudgard, and Jonathan Gilbert (maybe it takes four writers to tip-toe around the climate vs. social justice issue).

The Bloomberg Green authors call it “the campaign against climate.” Realists would call it a long overdue populist campaign for energy justice and against alarmism and energy rationing. And expect a lot more such protest in the future as Net Zero fails–and an “energy transition” back to the real thing (dense, stock, affordable, plentiful, reliable energies) occurs.

Here is the Bloomberg Green Daily story:

Politicians are vowing to roll back green policies and downplaying climate change ahead of key elections on both sides of the Atlantic, casting doubt on whether countries can maintain momentum in the transition away from fossil fuels.

In the US, former President Donald Trump, who has a long record of climate denial, is the frontrunner to challenge President Joe Biden in November. On the campaign trail, Trump has minimized the effects of climate change, attacked electric vehicles and pledged to repeal Biden’s signature climate law.

Meanwhile, in Europe, polls show right-wing parties that oppose strong climate action are likely to increase their representation after the European Union’s parliamentary elections in June, while the climate-minded Greens are expected to lose seats.

That raises the prospect of the US and the EU, two of the world’s top three climate polluters, retreating on environmental ambition following the world’s hottest year on record.

The shift is a mix of backpedaling — goals being pushed back or watered down — and backlash. The growing hostility in some cases veers into outright climate denial and is part of a drift into authoritarian rhetoric that relies on attacks and emotional appeals more than traditional policy debate.

Here comes the hyperbole, the religious-like premise of climate alarmists and forced energy transformationists:

Scientists warn that what’s at stake is a livable planet. Earth has already warmed 1.2C compared to the preindustrial era, and that’s on track to go up to about 2.5C by the end of the century if the world doesn’t speed up the shift to clean energy. Any slow-walking comes at the risk of additional warming that’s already driving disasters and costing billions of dollars every year.

That’s the regular green hype. Then comes the politics, where the authors get realistic. I offer my comments (in green).

Climate isn’t a core issue for most voters the way the economy and security are. But the populist right has made climate policy another culture-wars flash point — an example in their eyes of costly, intrusive overreach that compromises personal choice and national sovereignty.

Correct–and more. Frankly, the general public knows about exaggerated climate “science” and the behind-the-scenes shenanigans from a politicized profession (Climategate turns 15 years old this year).

Much of the right believes that the bigger threat “is not climate change; it’s the actions taken by governments to decarbonize economies,” says Mahir Yazar, a researcher at the Centre for Climate and Energy Transformation at the University of Bergen in Norway.

Correct! Just add “policy” to climate change to understand the real threat to what Alex Epstein calls human betterment.

Part of the reason the political winds are shifting is that climate regulations, as they ramp up in stringency, are starting to impinge more on people’s daily lives — at a time when many feel squeezed by inflation and the cost of living. “Do you choose a heat pump in your house? What car are you going to drive? These are emotional things to people,” said Bas Eickhout, a Dutch member of the European parliament with the European Green Party.

Yes, “green” policies increase energy prices and swell government budgets (and deficits in many places, led by the U.S. And yes, personal freedom to choose the best energy appliances and energies is a human preference against the Climate Industrial Complex.

Far-right politicians have prospered by tapping into that sentiment. Dutch Freedom Party leader Geert Wilders won over voters last year by promising to scrap the Netherlands’ climate law and exit the Paris Agreement. Libertarian Javier Milei, who has called global warming “a socialist lie,” became Argentina’s new president in December. Germany’s far-right Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) party, which rejects the decades-old scientific consensus on human-caused climate change, has promised to tear down Germany’s wind farms and has recently broadened its public support.

Fantastic! Removing ill-performing industrial wind turbines to allow more green space is surely environmental…. Climate policy is all pain, no gain, whatever one’s views on the cause and pace of physical climate change.

Closer to the political center, leaders are scrambling to show they’re not prioritizing net zero at the expense of household budgets or consumer choice. In the UK — by some measures a world leader in efforts to cut carbon emissions — Prime Minister Rishi Sunak hit the brakes on decarbonizing as one of his ministers vowed the Conservative government wouldn’t “save the planet by bankrupting Britons.” The rival Labour Party dropped its own pledge to invest £28 billion in green projects should it win the country’s next general election.

So climate policy does increase energy prices. So much for the “magical thinking” that Net Zero was a free lunch or one you are paid to eat….

But abandoning pledges is one thing; undoing settled policy is another. 

But failed policy needs to be rescinded. Apologies are in order from Bloomberg Green. In terms of social justice, why hurt the average person as consumer, ratepayer, and taxpayer?

One Comment for “Climate Policy vs. Social Justice (‘Bloomberg Green’ decries rollbacks)”

  1. John W. Garrett  

    Michael R. Bloomberg is a climate crackpot.

    I have to admit that I really wish I could understand his underlying motivation/(il)logic.

    He’s not completely stupid (unlike a Bill McKibben who one must presume suffered permanent cognitive damage by overindulging in prohibited substances at some point along the way). Bloomberg didn’t get where he is by being innumerate or by being unaware of basic economics and the fundamentals of price, supply and demand (ignoring the fact that he got his start as one of the swindlers of Salomon Brothers).

    One has to believe he is capable of comprehending just how little actual evidence underlies the “Catastrophic/dangerous, CO2-driven anthropogenic global warming/climate change” CONJECTURE.

    I find it difficult to understand how any sentient, semi-rational, halfway intelligent person can fail to inform themselves and examine the evidence underlying an issue of such national/international importance and consequently fail to comprehend just how shaky, wobbly and packed with pseudoscience it is.

    I am therefore left with no other alternative than to conclude that he is either actually malevolent or is motivated by considerations that he has not revealed (e.g., is he secretly a “peak oil” guy?).

    How many people is Mike Bloomberg going to kill when the electricity grid inevitably crashes due to reliance on expensive, intermittent and unreliable wind and solar electricity generation? How many people will be impoverished by expensive, government-mandated electricity? Yeah, Mike— you may kill fossil fuels with the $1,500,000,000 (One billion five hundred million dollars) you’ve pledged to “end fossil fuels” but you’ll also kill or hurt a whole bunch of people.


    So, Mike, please explain yourself. I’d really like to know.


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