Obama disses environmentalists

Environmentalist Bill McKibben authored an opinion piece published in The New York Times last Sunday complaining about President Obama’s announcement last week to allow for oil drilling in the Arctic Sea.

The Obama administration’s decision to give Shell Oil the go-ahead to drill in the Arctic shows why we may never win the fight against climate change. Even in this most extreme circumstance, no one seems able to stand up to the power of the fossil fuel industry. No one ever says no. …

Talk about salting wounds and adding insult to injury: It’s as if the tobacco companies were applying for permission to put cigarette machines in cancer wards.

And the White House gave Shell the license. In his first term, President Obama mostly ignored climate change, and he ran for re-election barely mentioning the subject until Hurricane Sandy made it unavoidable in the closing days of the campaign.

Then there is the nasty reality that climate change had nothing to do with Hurricane Sandy because it was a tropical storm and not a hurricane. Hurricane activity is at an all time low.

[Y]ou can’t deal with climate on the demand side alone. If we keep digging up more coal, gas and oil, it will get burned, if not here, then somewhere else. This is precisely the conclusion that a study in the journal Nature reached in January: If we’re to have any chance of meeting even Mr. Obama’s weak goal of holding temperature rise to 2 degrees Celsius, we have to leave most carbon underground. …

And yet Mr. Obama — acting on his own, since these are all executive actions requiring nothing from Congress — has opened huge swaths of the Powder River basin to new coal mining. He’s still studying whether to approve the Keystone XL pipeline, though the country’s leading climate scientists have all told him it would be a disaster. And now he’s given Shell the green light, meaning that, as with Keystone, it will be up to the environmental movement to block the plan (“kayaktivists” plan to gather this weekend in Seattle’s harbor, trying to prevent Shell from basing its Arctic rigs there).

Did McKibben and his fellow greens really think that Barack Obama and his party really meant what they said when it came to climate change? Obviously not and this should be a lesson learned. No country is going to legislate their way into poverty by adopting onerous carbon emission rules and economic controls in order to implement environmentalist plans to curb carbon emissions that will have little discernible effect on the climate. The climate change theories that McKibben religiously advocates for have been proven wrong time and again. Obama played the greens and now they get upset when they knew he wasn’t serious about an environmental legacy to begin with.