An event of great symbolic importance happened at the recent summit meeting of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). An attempt to formally protest against the Obama EPA’s false finding that CO2 emissions endanger humans was stymied by major corporations, out to protect their false green images. Being green has now become an embedded public relations stunt, especially with publicly traded companies.
ALEC is a unique organization that works to bridge the gap between industry and government. Its members come from both sides and it primarily drafts proposed legislation for State legislatures to consider.
In this case the legislation called for review of the so-called EPA Endangerment Finding. Unfortunately, major corporate members of ALEC have become increasingly reluctant to be seen questioning climate alarmism. As a result this excellent resolution was dropped after a contentious committee meeting. The State government members were reportedly for it but the industrials balked.
The proposed resolution basically says that the science used in 2009 by EPA is now known to be wrong, which is certainly true. For example, it says this about the science:
“WHEREAS, the 2009 endangerment finding relied on three lines of evidence: (1) basic physical understanding of the effects of changing concentrations of greenhouse gases; (2) indirect, historical estimates of past climate that suggest recent temperature changes are unusual; and (3) computer-based climate models which project future climate changes,
WHEREAS, since the 2009 endangerment finding, observed evidence and research has cast serious doubt on all three lines of evidence,
WHEREAS, estimates of climate sensitivity to increased concentrations of greenhouse gases appearing in the scientific literature since 2009 have fallen steadily below the estimates used by EPA, which contradicts the first line of evidence,
WHEREAS, research has shown that recent changes in temperatures, sea level rise, and the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events are not unusual in the historic and geophysical record, which contradicts the second line of evidence,
WHEREAS, the climate models relied upon by the EPA have forecast twice as much warming as has been reported by satellite, balloon, and even unadjusted surface monitors, which contradicts the third line of evidence…”
It looks like corporations now have at least three hypocritical reasons to go along with climate alarmism. First is their false green image. For example, UPS cited their “sustainable logistics” image, whatever that means, despite their being a huge source of CO2 emissions from all their trucks and airplanes. The interstates are full of their monster tandems and the streets their big delivery trucks. Since purchasing its first aircraft in 1981, UPS has become one of the world’s largest airlines. In addition to owning 239 jets, the company leases additional aircraft for the November-December peak-shipping season.
Then there is the big money to be made from green stuff. The Edison Electric Institute (EEI) objected to the resolution and their members include big monopoly utilities that are making a fortune off of their ratepayers by installing renewable generating plants and converting coal fired power plants to natural gas. The more they are forced to do the more money they make.
The one that is almost amusing is that ExxonMobil helped to block the resolution, even though they are the greens’ evil empire personified. As it happens they are also being investigated for not going along with climate alarmism, so here they go. Their CEO was named Trump’s Secretary of State and he completely blew the recent Bonn Climate Summit, where the American team came off like Obama clones.
Tim Huelskamp, Ph.D., the new president of the Heartland Institute, which helped draft the resolution, puts it succinctly:
“This result is disappointing, but not surprising. Big corporations like ExxonMobil and trade groups like EEI have long been members of the discredited and anti-energy global warming movement. They’ve put their profits and ‘green’ virtue signaling above sound science and the interests of their customers.”
There are a lot of greens out there and they make a lot of noise, so it is no wonder that corporations are appeasing them. Plus green industries are now making fortunes, thanks especially to government mandates and subsidies. Let’s hope the Trump Administration does not bend to these gold-plated pressures. We need to repeal the false Endangerment Finding as soon as possible.