Last August, Paul Driessen and I posted a series of three articles about USAID’s rampant climate alarmism in administering over half of all U.S. Foreign aid. The US Agency for International Development (USAID) doles out over $20 billion a year so it is a big deal. The title of our series was “Obama carbon colonialism and climate corruption continue.” The articles are here, here and here.
Well they are still at it. USAID now says that climate alarmism is supposed to be factored into every project they fund, in every country. This includes cutting harmless CO2 emissions and promoting so-called clean energy, which is actually bad energy.
It also includes what they call “sustainable landscapes” which really means things like not clearing land for farming, not using fertilizer or intensive farming practices, etc. I explained this in a July article titled “USAID puts fear before farming.” The message seems to be that the agriculture needed to feed growing populations, maybe even to raise their standard of living, is not seem as “sustainable.”
These alarmist practices are not just a waste of money that could be better spent; in some cases they are positively harmful, especially restricting farming. Poor countries do not need so-called clean energy; they need good energy, which is very different. They need reliable coal, oil, gas, hydro and nuclear power, not intermittent wind and solar.
USAID now has a web portal that is devoted to spreading these alarmist policies. It is called “Climatelinks.org” which obscures the fact that it is a federal website, but it is all about USAID projects and policies. Their name and logo are on every page.
Pointlessly reducing harmless CO2 emissions is prominently featured as a mission. For example they say this: “Energy use accounts for around two-thirds of greenhouse gas emissions. Global demand for energy is expected to increase by 37 percent by 2040, with nearly all the growth coming from developing countries. Energy security and access are paramount to development and low emissions development strategies are vital to mitigating global climate change. Scaling up renewable energy and increasing energy efficiency offer win-win solutions that support clean, climate-resilient economic growth.”
This is an anti-development energy policy.
In fact there are specific emission reduction schemes for many countries. They also get help from some hardline green outfits like the World Bank and World Resources Institute (WRI). Here is an example: “USAID mission staff who do not yet see their country listed below may consult internal agency resources. Users may benefit from consulting other resources, such as the World Bank’s Climate Knowledge Portal for climate impacts and WRI’s Climate Watch on GHG emissions.”
Note that every country where USAID works is slated to be included.
There seems to be some confusion about just how official Climatelinks is. For example they say this in their “About” page, which sounds pretty official:
“Climatelinks is a global knowledge portal for USAID staff, implementing partners, and the broader community working at the intersection of climate change and international development. The portal curates and archives technical guidance and knowledge related to USAID’s work to help countries mitigate and adapt to climate change. ”
But they also say this: “Climatelinks does not represent the views of USAID or the U.S. Government. Please visit USAID’s Website for official government information.”
The USAID logo is on every page, so this is certainly their website and there is lots of official sounding stuff. Perhaps saying it is not official lets them keep all the Obama era guidance and materials that contradict Trump Administration policies.
In summary, the US Agency for International Development is still funding and advancing anti-energy Obama-era climate change dogmas and policies for developing countries. The Trump Administration must put an end to these anti-development policies and the Climatelinks website that spreads them.