Environmentalism that’s all passion and no reason does no good for anyone — or even for the environment.
One sign of how unhinged greens have gotten is the rush to blame climate change for the Canadian wildfires that blanketed the Northeast with smoke and toxic air last week.
City Comptroller Brad Lander called the fires “a smoke signal that it’s time to stop” financing “fossil fuel” projects, while Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez cited the smoke (and a Puerto Rican heatwave) to demand we “adapt our food systems, energy grids, infrastructure, healthcare, etc. SMOKE.”
Yet there’s zero evidence of climate change sparked any of the more than 400 fires raging across Canada’s forests.
Indeed, the main stage-setter (as in California’s 2020 wildfires) looks to be forest mismanagement in the name of environmentalism.
Imagining that “natural” is always better, greens have pushed to stop controlled burns that clear out brush and debris and so make it less likely fires grow uncontrollable.
In a 2020 paper, scientists warned of a shortage of funding for Canadian forest-fire control, and in 2021 the Globe and Mail called for smaller, controlled burns to avoid runaway blazes.
But Canada’s leaders bowed to enviro sentimentignoring the science.
Ironically, that’s led to fires spewing millions of tons of carbon into the atmosphere.
Similarly, emissions from California’s wildfires in 2020 alone were twice as much as all of that state’s greenhouse-gas cuts over the previous 16 years, per a University of California study.
They also spewed twice as much greenhouse gas as all of Cali’s power plants combined.
Oh, and the smoke from Canada’s fires slammed solar plants, for generation drops of 50% in areas within the clouds.
Equally irrational is New York’s rush to shutter fossil-fuel-based power plants far faster than renewable sources come online.
The state’s set arbitrary requirements for 70% of its electricity to come from renewables by 2030, and 100% a decade later — without any real clue as to how to ensure it’ll have enough renewable power (and the necessary transmission lines) in time, even as it forces a steady drop in carbon-based plants.
The New York State Independent System Operator, which oversees the state’s energy market, warns that this compensation already is cutting supplies — and increasing the risk of blackouts.
“Pursuant to public policies, fossil fuel generation is retiring faster than renewable resources are entering service, leading to declining reliability margins,” warns NYSISO.
Meanwhile, Albany’s zealots are also boosting demand for juice, by requiring electrification of buildings and cars.
this year, Gov. Kathy Hochul got state lawmakers to bless her wacky tires on gas and other fossil fuels in new buildings, starting in three years.
What will happen as the supply of electricity falls while the demand for it rises? Yup: rate hikes — and blackouts.
President Joe Biden, meanwhile, has gone so far as to sacrifice the nation’s security in a bid to reduce emissions.
As The Post noted, his team aims to strong-arm defense companies by threatening to drop them if they don’t meet green targets.
That raises the risk of insufficient or inferior military supplies and higher costs.
The biggest folly of the focus on emissions cuts: Even the most crippling reductions won’t keep global output from rising, since countries like China and India won’t roll back their own emissions.
Hmm: When the power goes out, we guess you can hope for a wildfire to brighten up the night.