U.N. Secretary Attacks the Fossil Fuel Industry

U.N. Secretary Attacks the Fossil Fuel Industry

April 28, 2020

Unsurprisingly, since the beginning of the Covid-19 outbreak, those on the eco-left have tried hitching their agenda to the ongoing fight against this virus. Democrats have tried forcing their climate policies into Congress’ relief packages and activists are declaring this an opportunity to “save the world.” Most recently, U.N. Secretary General António Guterres wrote an op-ed in the New York Times arguing that the fights against Covid-19 and climate change should be combined into one “climate positive” plan.

Wesley Smith, an author and senior fellow at the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism, responded to this baseless plan in the National Review. He focuses on one particularly radical, counterproductive message.

The piece is mostly bereft of policy specifics — specifics breed opposition, after all — but there is one point he makes that we should focus on clearly because of its catastrophic certainty:

“Looking forward, public funds should invest in the future, by flowing to sustainable sectors and projects that help the environment and climate. Fossil fuel subsidies must end and polluters must pay for their pollution.”

In this paragraph, Guterres is advocating for natural gas and oil companies to pay for all perceived costs allegedly caused by carbon emissions. This plan would effectively bankrupt these enterprises and subsidize those deemed as being better for the climate.

In other words, in the great cause of “saving the planet,” open season would be declared against energy industries engaged in perfectly legal enterprises that have been responsible for creating the best standard of living in human history.

The natural gas and oil industry generates millions of jobs, billions in revenue, and the energy that powers so much of the day-to-day activity that we take for granted. Right now, as the world reacts to Covid-19, fossil fuels are responsible for powering hospitals, medical supplies, emergency vehicles, and the technology that allows millions of people to work and learn from home.

In fact, fossil fuels likely powered Guterres’ laptop as he devised a plan that would destroy the natural gas and oil industry. Particularly in times like this, we need to appreciate an industry that is helping us fight a global pandemic, not look for ways to tie one’s own agenda to it.