For many people today, humanity’s biggest moral failure is that we are destroying our environment. Nations that took part in the Industrial Revolution (those that conquered poverty long before others) get the lion’s share of the blame.
High on the list of their crimes is air pollution. Soot- and smog-filled skies are an affront to the eyes — and the lungs. They’re among the most obvious forms of pollution.
So, what’s happening around the world with regard to air pollution?
If you’re a Millennial in the developed West, you’ve probably never experienced health-threatening air pollution. But your parents probably grew up with heavy smog, and your grandparents with soot-filled skies.
Many of us in the developing world suffer those now. Air pollution is a constant threat to our health and even life. My country has some of the world’s worst air quality. I spent a year in the world’s most polluted capital, Delhi, and the world’s most polluted city, Gurgaon (a suburb of Delhi). In all, 22 of the top 30 most polluted cities are in India. But similar conditions prevail in major cities around the developing world.
Why is air quality in developing countries so bad when developed economies have more cars and industries?
Industrialization and Pollution
Almost all developed countries once had pollution levels similar to those in today’s developing nations. They, too, battled with air pollution early in industrialization. But as they became wealthier, they were able to tackle and conquer air pollution. They generated more electricity, fabricated more steel, built and drove more cars and trucks. Yet their skies became cleaner and purer.
What this looks like historically is a roller coaster ride — but one with only one ascent and one descent.
In early industrialization, pollution increases. It takes a toll on human health and life. But industrial activity also brings more and better food, clothing, shelter, health care, transportation and other benefits. And those benefits far outweigh the harms brought by the pollution.
How do we know that? Because even while pollution increases, so does life expectancy. Death rates fall, at all ages. And that’s the bottom-line measure of environmental quality.
That’s not all that happens.
The high pollution rates of early industrialization come from low-tech, inexpensive industrial processes. That’s what makes the processes affordable at that stage. When a society reaches various levels of prosperity, it can afford to develop and use processes that produce more goods with less pollution.
Environmental scholars refer to this phenomenon as the Environmental Kuznets Curve. As E. Calvin Beisner of the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creationexplains, it’s a bell-shaped curve that portrays how pollution increases during early industrialization, peaks, and then falls. Soon the now-developed economies can afford not only to reduce or even eliminate ongoing pollution but also to restore polluted resources. They wind up cleaner, healthier, safer than before they industrialized.
This is why much of North America and Europe enjoy the world’s best air quality — far better than it was 20, 50, 100 and more years ago.
No longer do people heat their homes with wood or coal in fireplaces. They use electricity, or burn natural gas in furnaces that emit essentially nothing but carbon dioxide — an odorless, colorless, nontoxic gas that makes plants grow better.
No longer do coal-fired generating plants belch soot and toxic fumes. They’re either replaced by natural gas plants, or fitted with scrubbers that remove the pollution and emit only water vapor and carbon dioxide.
As a result, overall air pollution levels around the world have improved despite heavy pollution in developing countries.
Getting Better, Not Worse!
But what about those developing countries? You’ve probably seen videos of pedestrians in Beijing or Delhi wearing gas masks, and cars with headlights on at noon, under a sky darkened by pollution.
Did you know that the air in New York, London, and Berlin was equally bad a century ago? What happened there is happening today in developing countries. And though it started later, it’s passing more quickly. Why? Because developing countries can apply, even early in development, off-the-shelf abatement technologies developed over decades, at great expense, in developed countries.
This is why air quality is projected to continue improving around the world. Increased use of less-polluting technologies in industry and transportation means cleaner air.
The hate level on Twitter can far exceed any other on social media.
But many sane, civilized, intelligent people on Twitter continue to make our world a better place. They share ideas and communicate life-altering, life-saving information to the larger public.
Twitter also provides a platform to engage with peers. As a climate researcher, I love the fact that Twitter allows me to connect with other climate scientists.
One such person is Dr. Katharine Hayhoe, a Canadian climate scientist. I’ve had a lot of differences with Hayhoe about the magnitude and causes of climate change, Biblical principles of stewardship, and proposed climate policies.
Hayhoe is an ardent climate doomsayer. As a Christian and the wife of a pastor, she persuades many churches to embrace her climate alarmism. Twitter helped me have regular conversations with her on matters about which we disagree.
Unfortunately, even many sane people lose their cool when you challenge something they hold dear.
Recently, 16-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg took the world by storm with her “school strike for climate activism.” She persuaded teachers and students worldwide to join her strikes. Some strikes in Britain turned ugly. Students protesting near Parliament abused the Prime Minister with obscene words.
Children Benefit More in the Classroom
I took to Twitter to voice my opinion. My opinion was this: School children benefit a lot more when they learn in their classrooms than when they are out on the streets shouting well-coordinated, politically motivated slogans.
I wrote, “Advise her to go to school, learn weather, learn climate, then specialise on the subject, do a degree and even a Masters degree. Then, and only then, lecture us about Climate. Sitting out on class only shows her unwillingness to learn. Not a good PR for academia.”
Hayhoe responded, “I am sorry, but I would recommend minding your own business, Vijay. You are not her parent.”
Really? Are parents the only people who can teach children? Is a teenager’s successful effort to mobilize thousands of students around the world in the name of climate alarmism none of my business? If it isn’t, then how is it Hayhoe’s?
Ironically, Hayhoe instructs me to mind my own business, but Greta Thunberg is meddling with the business of countless students worldwide, and of democratically elected leaders.
It is Thunberg who made a warning call to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “If you fail,” she said, “you are going to be seen as one of the worst villains in human history in the future. And you don’t want that.”
Who’s meddling with whose business?
I recommended more school for Thunberg for two major reasons.
More School for Thunberg
First, Thunberg has no expertise in climate change. She has no proof of her claims about climate doomsday or that her generation is destined to perish because of climate change.
Hayhoe firmly believes climate scientists should be authorities on climate science. So why does she endorse and support the claims of a 16-year-old with no expertise? Why does she ask a qualified, experienced climate-change researcher to mind his own business?
Second, Thunberg sets a bad precedent for young students. Thousands have participated in the strikes. All lose precious class hours when they might have learned something useful. Even worse, vested political interests manipulate the protests, carefully coordinating teachers and schools. In London, the mayor himself has called for an end to the protests.
Whether climate change is real or not is a matter for study by qualified scientists. Yes, ordinary citizens have the right to protest. And they have the right to accuse others of evil, provided there is sufficient evidence.
But I, too, have the right to voice my opinion on climate change, especially when the field has undergone so much controversy.
Honestly, I would not have cared to respond to Thunberg had she not blamed my generation and previous ones for the apparent destruction of the environment. Even then, I probably would have ignored her had she not falsely accused the prime minister of my country, which largely sat out the industrial era of 19th and 20th centuries that she blames for alleged climate catastrophe.
Thunberg in Sweden and Hayhoe in North America enjoy the benefits of industrial economies powered overwhelmingly by the fossil fuels they like to demonize. Meanwhile, we in developing countries still suffer poverty.
So I have a message for you wealthy climate alarmists in the wealthy West: Don’t tell us in the developing world to mind our own business when you target fossil fuels. Our efforts to conquer poverty are our business.
I believe the future of energy is nuclear. Many others do, too.
Despite the unfounded fears surrounding their safety, almost all major economies in the world have embraced nuclear technology with both arms.
Here is a look at the current nuclear energy scenario and recent developments that offer a hope of a bright and secure energy future.
Nuclear Energy: Standing Tall and Strong
In 2017, nuclear plants supplied 2,487 Terra Watt-hours (TWh) of electricity, constituting nearly 11 percent of all electricity generated globally. More than 50 countries (with a total of 450 operable reactors) are currently using nuclear energy.
In some developed countries, the percentage was extremely high. Nearly 72 percent of electricity in France came from nuclear energy. In Europe, Hungary, Slovakia, and Ukraine depended on nuclear for more than half of their electricity.
Their neighbors Belgium, Sweden, Slovenia, Bulgaria, Switzerland, Finland, and Czech Republic get one-third or more of their electricity from nuclear energy.
In terms of capacity and the amount of energy generated, the United States tops the charts with 805 TWh generated in 2017 (from 98 operable nuclear reactors). It was closely followed by France, China, and Russia. Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, and other countries make the top 10.
Clearly, nuclear energy is a key component in the success stories of these economies that are already energy superpowers. With its proven capability to generate affordable, reliable, and safe energy throughout the year, nuclear technology is the technology of the future.
More and more countries are actively expanding their nuclear energy capacity. The nuclear states are already in cooperation with developing countries to install nuclear reactors.
Among the developing countries, India has been very aggressive in its pursuit of installing new nuclear reactors. In addition to the 22 operable nuclear reactors, the country has 7 new reactors under construction and is planning to build 12 reactors soon.
India’s Asian neighbor China—with the third largest nuclear energy capability—has joined the race, too, ending a brief three-year anti-nuclear stance. The country now has begun approving construction of new plants.
In the Middle East, Saudi Arabia is completing its first nuclear reactor in Riyadh.
The nuclear energy sector, like others, has been a hotbed of evolution. Highly efficient Prototype Fast Breeder Reactors are already employed in Russia and India, producing less radioactive waste and 70 percent more energy than other reactors.
Other new technologies are on the horizon. “Small modular reactors (SMR)” are destined to be ground-breaking disruptive technologies in the energy sector. The U.S., China, and Russia are keen on SMR, and all are believed to have invested heavily in SMR.
SMRs are portable, take less time to build, and can be situated closer to cities, avoiding the cost and energy involved in connecting to a grid from a distance. SMRs generate highly resilient baseload power at cost-competitive prices, allowing mass production in less time and without waiting for years to be constructed.
They are a superior way of generating electricity at remote locations that are difficult to connect to a grid. If successful and adopted by more countries, SMRs will outdo renewables at a rapid pace, possibly even making renewable technology useless.
But not all countries are doing great at utilizing existing nuclear technology. South Africa is the only African nation that uses nuclear energy. It generated 7 percent of its electricity from nuclear energy in 2017.
In Asia, post-Fukushima fears have caused Japan to fall from among the top nuclear producers in the world to being the least among developed nations. The situation looks grim, with the state regulator closing down more plants.
Germany too, has been plagued by the anti-nuclear attitude, with many suggesting that the country’s defiant stance against nuclear energy is part of the reason for its current energy problems.
As for Africa, nuclear energy must be promoted intentionally rather than wasting resources on inferior technologies like renewables, as the United Nations and World Bank have been doing. In fact, Egypt is already in the process of approving a new nuclear plant.
Nuclear energy is indispensable to meeting the energy needs of our world. Currently, no other energy technology can produce so much energy using so little land and emitting so little pollution.
Along with other conventional sources of energy like coal, oil, and natural gas, nuclear energy will be a beacon of hope for the world’s poor. The role of SMRs will be significant if their development and deployment go as per the projections.
This article was originally published at Townhall.
It is easy to associate climate skepticism with the Republican Party and climate alarmism with the Democratic Party. It’s also easy to brand skeptics as beneficiaries of big oil and proponents of unfettered capitalism and alarmists as in the pocket of big wind and solar and boosters of socialist central planning.
But attitudes about climate change transcend political ideologies, and they should.
Here are a few reasons why I, as a climate scientist, am a skeptic.
1. Will the Real Climate Change Please Stand Up?
Japan’s monthly mean temperatures have shown no significant warming in 40 years. North America had one of its highest snowfall years in 2018. The Indian city of Chennai recorded its historic high way back in 2003. Hundreds of cities in North America recorded their historic lows in 2018, beating even 80-year records.
Satellite measurements of temperature (generally free from biases common to ground instruments) reveal no significant global warming in the past 18 years. When the climate doomsayers themselves acknowledge this hiatus, why would anyone believe their apocalyptic warnings?
And what about recent research by scientists who study the sun? They predict that the next two solar cycles will be the most inactive in recent history, akin to the cycles that caused the Little Ice Age in the 17th century. In all likelihood, even if we escape that devastating experience, there will be no warming to levels preached by alarmists and the mainstream media.
So, will the real climate change please stand up? Not the one shoved down our throats by political institutions or academic researchers with vested interests. The real climate science and real temperature data free from biases like the Urban Heat Island effect.
Some people might deny real-world temperature, but most won’t. In fact, even scientists are not ready! When climate reality differs dramatically from what the mainstream media proclaim, people are right to be skeptical.
2. Climate Policy Rating: Crazier than Crazy
No planes, no cars that run on gas, no nuclear energy, and no fossil fuels. That is Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio Cortez’s (D-NY) crazy plan for America’s future.
The mascot of global warming has lost its charm, and for good reason. For decades, doomsayers have used polar bears as a sympathy tool to persuade people to believe in extreme man-made global warming.
We can credit the fears and sympathy for polar bears to one man. A wealthy man, flying in private jets and emitting more carbon dioxide in a single month than a city dweller in Manila or Mumbai does in a lifetime. His name is Al Gore, and he is infamous for claiming, in his 2007 film “An Inconvenient Truth,” that Arctic summer sea ice would disappear by 2013, leading to the extinction of polar bears.
And it is not just bears that are thriving. Worldwide, the human life expectancy index has increased, thanks to safe housing, advanced health care, and improved agricultural technology — all brought to you by abundant, affordable, reliable energy, roughly 85% of which comes from fossil fuels. Climate change has not increased the number of deaths from hurricanes, floods, droughts, and wildfires, nor the frequency of these extreme weather events. Rather, deaths from those causes are falling, while the events themselves have not risen in either frequency or intensity.
The last time our earth was a bit cooler (during the Little Ice Age of the 17th century), agriculture collapsed in Northern Europe and elsewhere. Who needs freezing crops?
4. The Infamous Climategate Saga
Who can forget Climategate? As I worked on a research report at the University of East Anglia in 2009, we received word that the university’s email system had been breached.
Later that week, I learned that thousands of emails and documents were leaked from the email account of a climate scientist at the Climatic Research Unit in my university.
The emails, exchanged between him and other climate scientists across the globe, revealed data manipulations of enormous proportions, done with the sole objective of making the current warming trend appear more dangerous than it was.
To restore public confidence in climate science, the academia must rid itself of scientists with vested interests and political connections.
Regardless who win in America’s next elections and what climate policies are implemented, climate skepticism will not die. It will stop when climate science becomes real and unbiased. And that will be a long wait.
There were shades of this freeze in the United States, too. Marquette, Michigan, recorded 5.4 inches of snow on May 1, setting an all-time record for measurement dating back from 1961. In Chicago, O’Hare International Airport measured more than 3 inches of snow in late-April, the first time it has happened since April of 1967. Colorado is expected to receive anywhere from 9 to 15 inches of snow this week.
The sudden plunge in temperatures took many by surprise, as most of Western Europe was forecasted to experience heatwaves during the summer of 2019, not these freezing conditions.
People argue that these are just weather patterns and that they are not representative of long-term climatic conditions. That is correct!
But these weather conditions are not supposed to happen if we were to interpret our climate system based on the global warming alarmists’ claims.
According to alarmists, cold snaps like these are supposed to happen less and less frequently. And though they might be colder than equivalent periods a decade or so ago, we shouldn’t have to look back before the relatively warming of the 1980s–1990s (unmatched since) to exceed them. But to their dismay, temperatures in the past two years have hardly behaved in such a manner.
The winter of 2017–2018 was the harshest in recent times, with record snow and record low temperatures across the Northern Hemisphere. It brought historic levels of snow and broke 80-year record lows at many places.
Following the inevitable coverage of those record winter lows in the mainstream media, the alarmists began arguing that extreme snowfall is actually a symptom of global warming. They were quick to scramble their personnel within academia to produce scientific reports to support the same.
If we were to go strictly by alarmist logic (of extreme snowfall caused by global warming), then we should prepare ourselves for cold weather and a freezing future, not a warm one.
Astonishingly, the alarmists have managed to the make the masses believe global warming causes both record heat and record cold and snowfall.
The kind of untimely snowfall we are observing in May requires below-average temperatures, not above-average temperatures, thus exposing the contradictions within the claims of alarmists.
Even if much of Europe were to experience record warmth in the coming summer months, it still will not explain why global temperatures dropped below average in the past two years during various seasons.
Either the alarmists are wrong in their predictions, or they have intentionally lied to create warming panic among the public.
A continuation of the alarmist misguidance will result in global nations being unprepared for cold weather conditions and could put millions of lives at risk. Alarmist prophecies should never be the guideline for policy makers in our political institutions.
In addition to these, there exist the highly reliable satellite temperature data measurements from University of Alabama (UAH) and the measurements from Remote Sensing Systems (RSS). They capture the changes in atmospheric temperature, including the near surface lower troposphere temperatures.
The UAH and RSS are more reliable than the land datasets because they are free from biases arising from artificial temperature influences (known as Urban Heat Island effect) and errors arising from selective choice of weather stations.
Unlike the three surface temperature datasets, both the UAH and RSS data have largely remained free from any data manipulation and UHI biases. In recent years, this became more evident when GISTEMP data were found to be totally different from temperature measurements from satellites (UAH) and remote sensing systems (RSS).
This leaves UAH as the only untampered temperature dataset. In all likelihood, the UAH dataset will soon be shunned by those climate scientists who are desperate to portray a warming trend. Either the UAH data will be manipulated, or they will be cast out for not cohering with the other datasets.
The mainstream media are silent on these matters of data manipulation. Besides ignoring such blatant attempts to portray warming, the media and climate alarmists also blacklist those who point out these errors.
Be it the intentional elimination of relatively cooler temperature measurements from rural weather stations or the justification of extreme green policies based on false computer climate model outputs, the public has always been kept unware.
Climate change—or at least policymakers’ perceptions of it—and the economic policies associated with it are huge influences on our lives today. Given the magnitude of impact they have on our society, it is high time climate data adjustments were made public and defended by those who do them.
Far too much time and money have been wasted on proposed actions to reduce “dangerous” warming, despite the two-decade absence in significant warming, the deadliest winter of 2018, and the surprisingly healthy state of our polar regions.
Power blackouts were nearly daily affairs when I was growing up in India. I never thought I’d see a day when I had uninterrupted electricity.
The situation has improved a lot since my childhood, but India’s electric grid, like that of most developing countries, is still not nearly so reliable as those of most developed, Western countries.
What makes blackouts common in some countries, while they’re considered apocalyptic rarities in developed countries?
There are four main causes.
1.The Most Obvious: Lack of Resources
Traditionally, fossil fuels have been used to generate energy. While in most developed countries oil is reserved for transportation fuel and literally thousands of byproducts and so is rarely used to generate electricity, natural gas and especially coal are the primary inputs for electricity generation in all but a few major economies of the world.
Some countries are blessed with other resources like rivers, from which they can generate electricity using turbines in dams. Since the 1950s and 1960s, advances in science and technology have enabled us to generate electricity from nuclear materials.
Canada and France are prime examples of countries that rely on hydroelectric and nuclear power. The United States, Japan, India, China, Russia, and major European countries also use nuclear energy extensively.
Countries that don’t have these resources or can’t afford to import fossil fuels tend to lack electricity or have it only intermittently. Interruptions in imports of raw materials needed for energy generation make developing countries highly susceptible to blackouts.
Though abundant in nature, wind and solar are the most difficult resources to harness. Their low energy density and power density, combined with their intermittency make them costly, unreliable sources from which to generate electricity.
2.The Surprise: Mismanagement of Available Resources
Mismanagement of available resources also leads to blackouts. I faced severe blackouts last year when state authorities failed to stock up on coal, though it is abundant in my country.
Blackouts can also occur from mismanagement of the power infrastructure. In South Africa, corruption widespread in a state-owned electricity company led to a severe blackout in major cities.
3.The Needless Hurdle: Opposition from Eco-Warriors
Despite possessing all the resources necessary for energy generation, many countries face the hurdle of overcoming pressure from radical environmental groups that protest against fossil fuels and nuclear technology.
Why the protests? The main justifications are: coal causes global warming because burning it emits large amounts of carbon dioxide, which allegedly causes rapid global warming; nuclear is unsafe; and fracking pollutes groundwater.
But all three claims are unfounded. True, unaccountable political institutions like the United Nations, with its Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and the European Union, joined by politicians in many other nations, promote the claims. Academic scientists whose income depends on funding from those sources produce studies designed to validate them. But independent, empirical science refutes them all.
The result of the protests? A global backlash against coal despite no significant increase in global temperature over the last two decades, even while coal use and carbon dioxide emissions rose; anger against nuclear energy, despite its proven safety record; and a global movement against fracking, heavily subsidized by Russia in an effort to prop up natural gas prices, which are crucial to its economy.
4.The Most Stupid: Trading Fossil Fuels for Renewables
Despite the proven inefficiency of wind and solar, many countries now face blackouts because, pressured by environmentalist organizations, they try to rely on them instead of the coal, oil, and natural gas that have provided reliable, affordable electricity in the past.
Wind works only when the wind blows, and solar only when the sun shines. The instability of an electric grid rises right along with the percentage of its electricity that comes from wind and solar. Even when they work at their optimum, the power generated from them is expensive, unreliable, and unable to meet the magnitude of demand of huge cities and industries.
Developments in battery technology are nowhere near solving the problem of wind and solar’s intermittency and unpredictability. Consequently, the more energy an electric grid gets from them, the more it must depend on backup from fossil fuels or nuclear. That means consumers must pay twice for electricity: once for generating it from wind and solar, and again for running backup plants even when they’re not needed.
What happens when you embrace renewables? Blackout!
Disconnecting from conventional energy sources is energy suicide.
Most present-day blackouts are due to ignorant opposition, inefficient management practices, and the premature introduction of energy technologies that are nowhere near the standards or capacity of conventional technologies. They are rarely due, anymore, to lack of resources.
Though the developed West is mostly without them, blackouts are still part of everyday life for many in Asia, Africa, and South America. If they want to become blackout free, developing countries must steer clear of the restrictive energy policies radical environmental groups and global political institutions advocate.
Tokyo Drift is one of the most successful episodes of the Fast and the Furious movie franchise. It gives us a taste of the drift racing scene in Japan’s capital city of Tokyo.
Well, it looks like it is not just the cars that are doing the drifting in Tokyo. Japan’s climate has drifted far from the global warming narrative currently dominating headlines.
In fact, the spin is so much faster than the cars in some cities that have registered record colds in the past couple of years.
Climate skeptic Kirye has been reporting extensively on data from the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) for some time now. Kirye notes that 90% of Japan’s rural stations show cooling or no trend over the past two decades, and there has been no warming in Japan for two decades.
This month, Tokyo recorded the coldest April 10 in 83 years! At 10 degrees Celsius, the maximum temperature was the coldest since 1936. Earlier this month, Tokyo recorded the coldest April 2 since 1957.
In the past three decades, there has been no warming in many prefectures. Certain cities in the prefectures of Kagoshima and Aomori had their warmest years way back in the 1990s.
In fact, there was no warming in Japan even during the height of the industrialization between 1950 and 1990.
The reason why satellite measurements differ from on-ground thermometers is because of the Urban Heat Island effect. Scientists who are inclined towards the alarmist theory, have selectively used thermometers from urban sites, which are prone to show rising temperatures as cities develop.
This is one reason why Kirye limited her analysis to rural temperature datasets. Interestingly, she observed that NASA quit using temperature measurements from a vast number of rural stations. Selective use of urban stations enables NASA and other agencies to project a rapid warming trend, not just in Japan but across the world.
The drift is not peculiar to Tokyo. Japan is just a testament to the global decline in warming. And with scientists predicting more cooling ahead—owing to the solar cycles with low sunspot activity—Japan could be headed for more cold spells in the coming decades.
I love nature. I’m writing this from the lush forests of India. But I want to call your attention to something going on in your own country—something that should shock and outrage you.
It’s the needless deaths of millions of birds every year.
I grew up among the beautiful peacocks and pretty little sparrows in the beautiful forest regions of southern India. Those and many other birds were not just pretty things I enjoyed watching. I was concerned by the many challenges human encroachments posed to them and other wildlife.
So, when I grew up, I became a wildlife ecologist. I spent entire years in the forests and wildlife habitats, studying their populations and helping experts reduce the human-wildlife conflict.
Besides my work with mammals like tigers in India and reptiles in UK, I also worked on the conservation of birds in Portugal. That was when I came across a deadly form of human infrastructure that silently kills millions of birds each year.
If Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring were written today, it would address this new killer that has successfully evades the scrutiny of environmentalists and nature lovers.
What is that killer?
You can be a renewable energy enthusiast or a lover of other energy forms. You can be a Republican or a Democrat. You can be rich or poor. You can be of any ethnicity. But none of those identities should stop you from calling out wind turbines for what they are: Bird Killers.
My fellow bird enthusiasts in Portugal were livid with the turbines. At first I found it hard to understand why.
Then I began to research bird mortality caused by wind turbines and other energy infrastructures. My master’s thesis was on turbines’ impact on bird life in the Special Protected Wildlife Area of Portugal. I have personally radio-collared “protected species” of birds that have died when they collided with wind turbines.
Since then I’ve looked at wind turbines’ deadly effect on birds elsewhere—including in your beloved country.
The fact that wind turbines kill birds is so well-established that a lot of research is being done on strategies to help the birds evade the turbines’ giant, rapidly turning blades.
Bird mortality by wind turbines is such a well-established fact in wind energy circles that in 2013 a wind energy company agreed to pay $1 million in fines after the Justice Department proved it guilty in a first criminal case against a wind power company for the deaths of protected birds.
The species with high risk from wind turbines are those that are long-lived, slow-reproducing, and wide-ranging or migratory. On top of this, the already endangered and vulnerable species are further impacted and pushed to the brink of extinction by wind factories. (Don’t let anybody tell you they’re wind farms. They’re factories.) Even offshore wind turbines kill birds at an alarming rate.
I hear a lot of excuses from people when I present these facts. They argue that wind farms contribute to the greater good by reducing carbon dioxide emissions—something they consider a more urgent environmental issue.
Their excuses and arguments fall flat. Some species, especially raptors like the bald eagle, have been pushed to the brink of extinction exclusively by wind turbines. You might think you can save the planet from global warming after 100 years, but there will be no raptors in your sky.
The fact that birds are killed by other sources does not mean the wind turbines somehow earn the unalienable right to slaughter millions every year.
And it is not like our world will end if we let go of wind farms. Even an ardent promoter of renewable energy like Bill Gates openly stated that windmills cannot support the electricity demands of cities like Tokyo or New York, as they cannot produce on-demand electricity.
Moreover, wind turbines operate only during the days when there is sufficient wind, forcing us to meet our energy needs from other sources when there isn’t. Wind factories surround my hometown of Chennai, India, and our industries suffer severe losses due to the damage caused by the unstable, intermittent electricity they produce.
Why support an energy source that is unreliable, intermittent, and expensive—all while it kills millions of birds?
Anyone with a true heart for nature, anyone who would love to preserve nature, cannot support wind energy. It is unethical and immoral to support windmills just because they reduce a minuscule amount of carbon dioxide emissions and cannot guarantee any beneficial influence on Earth’s climate.
The claim that wind energy is clean and green is a myth to environmentalists like me who have witnessed its devastating effects firsthand.
If you do not raise your voice against the daylight murder of birds in your own backyards, it will be too late to save many species of birds. Before you save the planet, save your own birds.
Neither Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez nor Al Gore would ever tell you about the blood on the blades of wind turbines. They will preach about polar bears (whose population has roughly doubled in recent decades) and penguins (which aren’t threatened), and gladly divert your attention from the slaughter of birds in your own backyard.
Say No to Wind. Say Yes to Birds. Just because you agree with most of a politician’s policies, you don’t have to agree with all of them.
Despite their incessant drumbeat about global warming, mainstream media knows climate doomsday is not imminent and are probably uncomfortable when doomsayers like Congresswoman Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) say, “The world will end in 12 years” unless we do something, drastic, now.
But they are well aware that political catastrophes could cause much greater harm to humanity—not in the far distant future, but within months, weeks, or even a single day.
That’s why climate change and the “Green New Deal” finally disappeared from headlines this week, trumped by news of more immediate threats.
The Return of Nuclear War as an Imminent Threat
With the end of the Cold War, the risk of nuclear war has receded from many people’s fears. Certainly the likelihood of a major nuclear exchange between the United States and the Soviet Union, or now Russia, has declined since the nervous 1960s and 1970s.
But the threat is reviving in the form of rogue nuclear states.
North Korea is the most notorious. President Donald Trump’s second meeting with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, which ended with no agreement when Trump refused Kim’s demand that sanctions be lifted, occupied headlines worldwide. Even climate-alarmist CNN abandoned climate change headlines to focus on the historic meeting in Vietnam.
Meanwhile, some weeks ago, India and Pakistan were on the verge of war. The reason? A surgical strike by India’s Air Force on a terrorist camp inside Pakistan, and Pakistan’s response to it.
As many as 16 Indian Air Force fighter jets using 2200 pounds of laser-guided bombs in a 30-minute air raid demolished the camp. It was the same camp (not far from the infamous Abbottabad, where American forces found and killed Osama Bin Laden) from which terrorists launched an attack earlier in February in Jammu & Kashmir, killing around 40 Indian paramilitary forces.
But tensions remained high. Pakistan closed its entire airspace to commercial traffic. India closed its northern airspace temporarily. Thousands of flights were affected worldwide. Thai Airways cancelled most of its overnight flights to Europe, and all flights normally routed through Pakistani airspace were re-routed.
Both India and Pakistan are nuclear armed, and with volatile leadership in both states, the dangers from a possible nuclear conflict far exceed those touted by climate fear mongers at the United Nations and the leftist environmentalists who support them.
Political Bombshells Overshadow Climate Alarm
While American media focused on testimony by Michael Cohen, headed for prison for lying to Congress, former Canadian Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould dropped what could be the biggest bombshell in Canadian political history—with a possible major impact on Canadian climate and energy policy.
The Star reported, “Wilson-Raybould said she was the target of ‘veiled threats’ and a ‘consistent and sustained’ effort by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his senior officials to politically interfere in criminal charges against [engineering company] SNC-Lavalin,” which serves the oil and gas, nuclear, mining and metallurgical, and clean power industries.
If confirmed, this could be a criminal offense. Opposition party leader Andrew Scheer called for an immediate investigation and formally asked Trudeau to resign. The scandal could become a deciding factor in Canada’s upcoming election, joining many Canadians’s dislike for carbon taxes Trudeau’s party has imposed.
Across the Atlantic, Brexit has dominated news in Europe, and its environmental aspects have received little to no coverage compared with that given to its economic and developmental aspects.
There are endless examples from around the world of people beginning to realize the futility of climate alarmism and showing increasing concern for more serious matters like domestic tax rates, ethical leadership, energy, and economic development.
Nonetheless, expect the mainstream media to return to their obsession with climate alarmism. They’ve made it a habit.
This article was originally published at Townhall.