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Tag Archives: environmental extremists


New York Times Pushes ‘Ecocide’ as ‘International Crime Against Peace’

By WESLEY J. SMITHNational Review

Radical environmentalists are mounting a two-pronged attack on free markets and human enterprise. The first is “nature rights,” which would allow anyone to sue to stop any significant use of the land or extraction of resources as violating “nature’s” supposed “right” to “exist, persist, maintain and regenerate its vital cycles, structure, functions and its processes in evolution.” Think of “nature rights” as a “shield” against large scale enterprise.

Lesser known, but even more potentially dangerous to human thriving, is the “ecocide” movement. Ecocide would criminalize enterprise that extracts natural resources or makes widespread use of the land, as a “crime against peace,” deemed an equivalent evil to genocide and ethnic cleansing. Think of “ecocide” as a “spear” that punishes large scale enterprise.

Here’s the general definition of ecocide:

Ecocide is the extensive destruction, damage to or loss of ecosystem(s) of a given territory, whether by human agency or other causes, to such an extent that peaceful enjoyment by the inhabitants of that territory has been severely diminished.

Note that “peaceful enjoyment by the inhabitants” is a very broad term, intended to include everything from grass, fish, and insects to mice, snakes, and people. And diminishment of “peaceful enjoyment” would not require actual pollution, but could mean a declining supply of forage or a loss of foliage caused by almost any use of the land, perhaps even simple urban or suburban growth.

Advocacy for ecocide has now gone mainstream, making the august pages of the New York Times. Using the fires in the Amazon as pretext, the Times’ Brazil bureau chief Ernesto Londoño, pushes the idea that Brazil’s president Jair Bolsonaro, should be hauled before The Hague to stand trial for ecocide. From the analysis piece:

There is no international crime today that can be used to neatly hold world leaders or corporate chief executives criminally responsible in peacetime for ecological catastrophes that result in the type of mass displacements and population wipeouts more commonly associated with war crimes. But environmentalists say the world should treat ecocide as a crime against humanity — like genocide — now that the imminent and long-term threats posed by a warming planet are coming into sharper focus.

In Mr. Bolsonaro they have come to see something of an ideal villain tailor-made for a legal test case.

It is worth noting that there are no voices in Londoño’s piece critical of ecocide advocacy.

It is my understanding that the Amazon fires do not mostly involve old growth forest, but rather, lands that have already been converted to farming. Whether that is true or not, should a duly elected president of a sovereign nation be hauled before the Hague and face criminal charges because environmentalists disagree with his country’s environmental and development policies legally enacted by that president or country?

If so, China’s leader Xi Jinping had better watch his back. I mean, have you ever breathed the air in Beijing?

Oh, Wesley, who are you kidding? Communists aren’t about to be targeted by radical environmentalists.

Besides, ecocide isn’t about punishing potential environmental catastrophes such as the Amazon fires. That is just a pretext. The actual goal is thwarting enterprise and opposing capitalism.

Want evidence? Ecocide campaigners’ chief villains heretofore have been corporate CEOs, whose supposed crimes have been to extract oil from Alberta’s tar sands. Indeed, in a mock trial held in the chambers of the English Supreme Court, hypothetical corporate tar sand CEOs were imprisoned for extracting oil from the fields.

Further demonstrating the real game this is afoot, Londoño foresees President Trump as a splendid candidate for ecocide imprisonment because he has thwarted mainstream environmentalist policies:

Mr. Bolsonaro is by no means the only world leader reviled by environmentalists. President Trump has been assailed for rolling back environmental regulations and pulling out of the Paris climate accord.

See what I mean about the Amazon fires being a pretext?

Radical environmentalists intend to thwart human thriving in order to “save the planet.” As “nature rights” advances — four rivers have now been granted human-type rights — look for campaigners to push hard to make “ecocide” an international crime. If they succeed, the world will face a substantially less prosperous future.


Is There Anything Environmentalists Won’t Blame On Climate Change?

Investor’s Business Daily

CNN this week published a huge story saying the source of the migrant caravan wasn’t so much corrupt Central American governments, violence or lousy economic policies. It was climate change. This is just the latest attempt by environmentalists to blame any and all bad news — even acne and animal bites — on climate change.

The CNN story, complete with pictures, videos and charts, claims that climate change is responsible for the drought in parts of Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua that forced thousands to flee for the U.S.

Well, not “responsible,” exactly. The author admits part way through that “Studies have not definitively tied this particular drought to climate change.” Continue reading


California Regulates Cow Methane “Emissions”

By Associated Press • New York Post

California will begin regulating greenhouse-gas emissions tied to dairy cows and landfills under legislation signed Monday by Gov. Jerry Brown, escalating state efforts to fight climate change beyond carbon-based gases to include methane and other pollutants.

The law targets a category of gases known as short-lived climate pollutants, which have an outsize effect on global warming despite their relatively short life in the atmosphere. Environmentalists hope that tackling short-lived pollutants now would buy time to develop new and more affordable technology to reduce carbon emissions.

California has stoked a global reputation for its attempts to slow climate change through a combination of strict mandates against pollution and financial incentives for green technology. Continue reading


Virgin Islands AG Drops Exxon Subpoena

Setback for coalition of Dem AGs seeking racketeering charges

By Lachlan MarkayWashington Free Beacon

The attorney general of the U.S. Virgin Islands withdrew his subpoena of oil giant Exxon Mobil on Wednesday afternoon, dealing the first setback to a group of Democratic officials seeking racketeering charges against the company.

Exxon told a federal court that AG Claude Walker had agreed to walk away if the company would drop a related lawsuit alleging that the subpoena violated its constitutional rights and the laws of its home state of Texas.

Walker was the third state attorney general, after New York and Massachusetts, to subpoena Exxon Mobil over allegations that it committed fraud and racketeering by misleading customers and shareholders about the risks of climate change.

Walker is the first to walk back the effort against Exxon, but he is also in litigation in Washington, D.C., over a separate subpoena sent to a libertarian nonprofit that received donations from Exxon more than a decade ago.

Both subpoenas have triggered legal action. In a federal lawsuit filed three weeks after it was subpoenaed, Exxon alleged that Walker’s subpoena violated its “rights under the First, Fourth, Fifth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution, the Texas Constitution, and Texas common law.”

District Judge Ed Kinkeane ordered Exxon and Walker to meet no later than July 11 to discuss “the possibilities for a prompt resolution of the case.” Exxon’s filing notified the court that they’d reached an agreement to withdraw both the subpoena and the resulting lawsuit.

Walker had asked for a massive number of internal Exxon documents, including documents pertaining to its internal deliberations and projections about climate change, but also requested communications with nearly a hundred nonprofit groups.

They included conservative and libertarian advocacy groups, but also more mundane organizations such as the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, the Arizona State University office of climatology, and Africa Fighting Malaria.

New York attorney general Eric Schneiderman and Massachusetts attorney general Maura Healey asked for communications with many of the same research and advocacy groups, including the Heritage Foundation, the Competitive Enterprise Institute, and the Cato Institute.

Schneiderman is the leader of a group of 20 state attorneys general that have seized on reports from news organizations funded by environmentalist groups that allege that Exxon misled the public about the risks its product poses.

Exxon and other critics say it is an unconstitutional effort to use state governments’ legal authority to shut down political speech and advocacy with which the attorneys general disagree.

The attorneys general, all Democrats, have been planning the legal campaign for more than a year. When a Schneiderman aide emailed a questionnaire to other attorneys general involved in the effort, Walker said he was “eager to hear what other attorneys general are doing and find concrete ways to work together on litigation to increase our leverage.”

Though Walker has withdrawn his Exxon subpoena, he also subpoenaed the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a libertarian group that used to receive Exxon funding, seeking evidence in its investigation into the company.

Walker has dropped his effort to enforce that subpoena in D.C., where CEI is based, but has not actually withdrawn it. The group is now alleging that the effort violated a DC law against lawsuits designed to censor, harass, or intimidate a public critic. A federal judge heard arguments on that motion on Tuesday.

The larger campaign was orchestrated behind the scenes with leaders of prominent environmental groups and deep-pocketed foundations that fund them and the news organizations whose reporting ostensibly spurred the investigation.

According to internal documents detailing the effort, its goals are to “delegitimize [ExxonMobil] as a political actor,” “force officials to disassociate themselves from Exxon,” “drive divestment from Exxon,” and “to drive Exxon & climate into center of 2016 election.”

Democratic lawmakers have also pressed the Justice Department to bring civil racketeering charges against Exxon over the same allegations. Attorney General Loretta Lynch has said that she referred the case to the FBI, which is deciding whether to prosecute.


How NOAA rewrote climate data to hide global warming pause

by Thomas Richard     •     Examiner

The number of excuses for the global warming pause or hiatus had grown to more than 66 when the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) added yet another one to the list in a just-published study in Science. In their argument that came out yesterday, NOAA said that long-existing instrument bases have masked rising sea surface temperatures. Once they “readjusted” the data, the warming hiatus disappeared. By cooling the past, they were able to make the most recent years even warmer.

This assessment has drawn heavy criticism from both sides of the bitter climate debate, but one thing no one disputes: NOAA may have overstepped its authority in rewriting climate history and relying on faulty data sets. By making the early 1900s colder, and using only land-based temperature stations and less-reliable ocean temperatures, NOAA can now readjust the past to chart a new future.

This new study also comes at a time when President Obama has shifted his focus to climate change, not to mention the EPA’s proposed plans to completely revamp the country’s power plant system through new regulations. Continue reading


No global warming at all for 18 years 8 months

By Christopher Monckton of Brenchley     •     Climate Depot

Figure T12. The Freedom Clock edges ever closer to 20 years without global warming

The Paris agreement is more dangerous than it appears. Though the secession clause that this column has argued for was inserted into the second draft and remained in the final text, the zombies who have replaced the diplomatic negotiators of almost 200 nations did not – as they should have done in a rational world – insert a sunset clause that would bring the entire costly and pointless process to an end once the observed rate of warming fell far enough below the IPCC’s original predictions in 1990.

It is those first predictions that matter, for they formed the official basis for the climate scam – the biggest transfer of wealth in human history from the poor to the rich, from the little guy to the big guy, from the governed to those who profit by governing them.

Let us hope that the next President of the United States insists on a sunset clause. I propose that if 20 years without global warming occur, the IPCC, the UNFCCC and all their works should be swept into the dustbin of history, and the prosecutors should be brought in. We are already at 18 years 8 months, and counting. The el Niño has shortened the Pause, and will continue to do so for the next few months, but the discrepancy between prediction and reality remains very wide. Continue reading


Al Gore’s Doomsday Clock Expires, Climate Change Fanatics Wrong Again

by David French      •     National Review

al gore_global warming_climate change_carbonThe rapture was supposed to happen on September 13, 1988. A few fringe pastors were screaming that the end was nigh, that the righteous would soon disappear into the air while the rest of humanity was doomed to suffer a quite literal hell on earth. Forget the biblical admonition that no man knows the day nor hour of Christ’s return, these men had figured it out. It was time to prepare yourself.

I was a sophomore at a Christian college in Nashville, and it was the talk of the campus. No one likes to make fun of crazy Christian preachers more than irreverent Christian college students, and we couldn’t stop dividing the student body between the saved and the damned.

When the alarm clock rang the morning after the scheduled rapture, I hit snooze, and said, triumphantly, to my roommate, “We’re still here!” There was no response. “Hello?” Still no response. I looked down at his bed, and no one was there. For about nine seconds I was gripped by sheer panic. I’d been left behind. The lake of fire awaits! Then my roommate walked in from the shower, and the crisis passed. Continue reading


Congress must rein in rogue EPA

Washington Examiner

This week, the Government Accountability Office, a watchdog agency within the federal government, announced in a letter to Senate Environment and Public Works Chairman James Inhofe, R-Okla., that it had determined the EPA violated the law. (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke)

Gina McCarthy, administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, proudly announced this year that 90 percent of the nearly 1 million comments on the agency’s new Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule were in favor.

“The input helped us understand the genuine concerns and interests of a wide range of stakeholders and think through options to address them,” McCarthy wrote at the time.

What she did not mention, naturally, is that agency staff had worked with environmental activists to manipulate the comments process to skew the result.

Using the Thunderclap social media app, EPA officials worked with activist leaders to spread the word to 1.8 million of their fellow travelers. The resulting social media bomb encouraged them to click through and write comments on the rule. As a result, the comment box was overwhelmed with support for the EPA’s position. Continue reading


Using RICO against climate skeptics

Climate alarmists want government to silence skeptics

By Paul Driessen     •     Washington Times

What irony. The latest attack on fellow scientists was launched by academics from a university named for the patriot who wrote the original Virginia version of our Bill of Rights. Those rights include freedom of speech and assembly, the right to petition our government, and protection from unreasonable search and seizure of our property.

Sadly, it reflects the appalling state of “academic freedom” on too many campuses, which today celebrate every kind of diversity except diversity of opinion.

Jagadish Shukla, four associates at his George Mason University-based Institute of Global Environment and Society, and 15 other climate researchers have signed an outrageous letter, asking President Obama and Attorney General Loretta Lynch to investigate “organizations that have knowingly deceived the American people about the risks of climate change.” Continue reading


Massive Solar Power Plant Emits 46,000 Tons of CO2

by John Merline     •     Investor’s Business Daily

President Obama once praised it as a shining example of America’s clean energy future. “With projects like this one,” he said at the site of a solar plant just before construction started, “we’re putting Americans to work producing clean, home-grown American energy.”

And his Department of Energy showered $1.6 billion in loan guarantees, as well as $600 million in tax credits.

The plant is the Ivanpah Solar Power Facility, a behemoth that uses hundreds of thousands of mirrors spread out over more than five square miles of the Mojave Desert. The mirrors all aim at the tops of three 459-foot towers, where the heat boils water in tanks held there, which generates steam to turn the electricity-producing turbines. Continue reading


The 97 Percent Solution

By Ian Tuttle     •     National Review

Unable to address Texas senator Ted Cruz’s questions about “the Pause” — the apparent global-warming standstill, now almost 19 years long — at Tuesday’s meeting of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Oversight, Sierra Club president Aaron Mair, after an uncomfortable pause of his own, appealed to authority: “Ninety-seven percent of scientists concur and agree that there is global warming and anthropogenic impact,” he stated multiple times.

The relevant exchange begins at 1:39 (though the whole segment is worth watching):

Continue reading


An Instance of Warmist Corruption

by John Hinderacker     •      Powerline

Corruption TransparencyWe have often written about the fact that the world’s governments pour billions of dollars annually into the global warming project, the object of which is to increase the powers of government. And yet governments, the main parties that stand to benefit from the warmists’ campaign, pretend that their money is somehow innocent, while any private entity that supports climate research is suspect.

Alarmist scientists have gone so far as to urge the Obama administration to prosecute criminally scientists who disagree with them. The premise for this proposed RICO investigation was that “corporations in the fossil fuel industry and their supporters”–i.e., scientists who don’t buy the global warming hype–are deceiving the public for financial gain. This despicable effort, which we wrote about here, is led by Jagadish Shukla of George Mason University and several of his colleagues. Continue reading


Getting Rich off Climate Extremism

by Ian Tuttle     •     National Review

Climate Change FairtalesIt would seem to go without saying, but: Before accusing myriad individuals and organizations of defrauding the American people, it’s advisable to make sure you are not currently doing the same.

With that in mind, meet Jagadish Shukla, professor of climate dynamics at George Mason University. On September 1, Dr. Shukla and 19 other climate scientists sent a letter to President Obama, Attorney General Loretta Lynch, and White House Office of Science and Technology policy director John Holdren calling for “a RICO investigation of corporations and other organizations that have knowingly deceived the American people about the risks of climate change,” a (criminally irresponsible) tactic initially proposed by Rhode Island senator Sheldon Whitehouse in a Washington Post op-ed in May. The letter could be found on the website of the Institute of Global Environment and Society (IGES) — the “non-profit, tax-exempt research institute” founded and headed by Dr. Shukla. ​ Continue reading


The EPA’s Next Big Economic Chokehold

Lowering ozone—from cars, trucks, factories and power plants—in the name of an imaginary health benefit.

by Tony Cox     •     Wall Street Journal

EPA FrankenstienThis fall the Environmental Protection Agency plans to take its next grand regulatory step, following the announcement of the EPA’s Clean Power Plan over the summer. The agency is likely to introduce stringent new standards for ground-level ozone, arguing that a lower allowable level of ozone—an important component of smog—will reduce asthma in the U.S., among other claimed health benefits. Yet the EPA ignores decades of data and studies, some under the agency’s auspices, that reveal no detectable causal relation between past reductions in ozone and better public health, including reductions in asthma cases.

The new regulation may be the most expensive ever for the U.S. economy—even worse than the Clean Power Plan’s effect on coal-fired power plants. Some studies, such as one published in August by National Economic Research Associates, estimate implementation costs of hundreds of billions of dollars a year in the short run, and trillions of dollars over the next two decades, as well as millions of lost jobs. Why would it be so costly? Because attacking ozone involves almost every facet of the economy—as the EPA notes, “automobiles, trucks, buses, factories, power plants” and “consumer products” all contribute to ground-level ozone. Continue reading


EPA knew of ‘blowout’ risk for tainted water at gold mine

By Michael Biesecker     •     My Way News

In this Aug. 12, 2015 file photo, water flows through a series of retention ponds built to contain and filter out heavy metals and chemicals from the Gold King mine chemical accident, in the spillway about 1/4 mile downstream from the mine, outside Silverton, Colo. Internal documents released by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Friday, Aug. 21, show managers at the EPA were aware of the potential for a catastrophic “blowout” at an abandoned mine that could release “large volumes” of wastewater laced with toxic heavy metals. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File)

Internal documents released late Friday show managers at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency were aware of the potential for a catastrophic “blowout” at an abandoned mine that could release “large volumes” of wastewater laced with toxic heavy metals.

EPA released the documents following weeks of prodding from The Associated Press and other media organizations. EPA and contract workers accidentally unleashed 3 million gallons of contaminated wastewater on Aug. 5 as they inspected the idled Gold King Mine near Silverton, Colorado.

Among the documents is a June 2014 work order for a planned cleanup that noted that the old mine had not been accessible since 1995, when the entrance partially collapsed. The plan appears to have been produced by Environmental Restoration, a private contractor working for EPA.

“This condition has likely caused impounding of water behind the collapse,” the report says. “ln addition, other collapses within the workings may have occurred creating additional water impounding conditions. Conditions may exist that could result in a blowout of the blockages and cause a release of large volumes of contaminated mine waters and sediment from inside the mine, which contain concentrated heavy metals.” Continue reading


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