June 18 was the official release date of the Pope’s encyclical on climate change. Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI’s) Mr. Myron Ebell provides this assessment of Pope Francis’s statements, lamenting the neglect of how energy policies that count on bad climate facts can actually end up hurting the poor and perpetuating energy poverty.
“Pope Francis argues in his encyclical that the developed nations have a moral responsibility to reduce greenhouse gas emissions because climate change threatens poor people in poor countries the most. However, poor people in poor countries lack access to the modern energy and technologies that allow people to deal with environmental challenges. The Vatican seems to have forgotten to consider the effects that energy-rationing policies to reduce emissions will also have on poor people in poor countries. Putting the world on an energy-starvation diet will consign billions of people to perpetual energy poverty.
Global warming is a moral issue, but a proper moral evaluation must include comparing the impacts of global warming, which may be bad, with the impacts of global warming policies, which will almost certainly be catastrophic. The Pope’s encyclical misses that significant matter.
The Vatican appears to have been very ill advised in preparing the encyclical. It has been announced that two of the experts consulted were Hans Joachim “John” Schellnhuber of the Potsdam Institute and Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University. Mr. Schellnhuber has advocated for the rapid de-industrialization of the West and for a world government to achieve environmental salvation and enforce population control. Mr. Sachs has promoted misguided developmental policies in the Third World that have helped to stymie development and perpetuate poverty.”
Myron Ebell is director of the Center for Energy and Environment at the Competitive Enterprise Institute and chairs the Cooler Heads Coalition, which comprises over two dozen non-profit groups in this country and abroad that question global warming alarmism and oppose energy rationing policies.
Ebell has appeared as a guest on numerous television shows, including the ABC Evening News, NBC Nightly News, PBS News Hour, BBC Newsnight, BBC World, CNBC, CNN, C-SPAN’s Washington Journal, MSNBC, ITN, Voice of America, Televisa, Sky TV, Al Jazeera, PBS’s NOW, Fox News’s Special Report with Bret Baier, O’Reilly Factor, and Hannity and Colmes. He has spoken frequently on a variety of BBC radio news shows and on hundreds of radio talk shows.
Ebell’s writings have appeared in a variety of publications, including the New York Post, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Washington Post, Forbes, London’s Guardian, Standpoint Magazine, Riverside Press Enterprise, Philadelphia Inquirer, and Environmental Law Forum.