Settled Is as Settled Does


Here’s a little-noticed but likely meaningful snippet from Todd Stern, Obama’s “climate envoy.”
Europe’s insistence that the U.S. walk into their trap (again) of a global-warming treaty that demands mandatory cuts from a small handful of countries, and uses the transparent ruse of a 1990 emissions-performance baseline to give the EU a free ride (thanks to its subsequent economic collapse, and thanks also to Kyoto Article 4, which allows the EU to collectivize performance) earned a Stern rebuke.

Where Europe would get that idea, by the way, is simply beyond me.

Says Stern: “We need to be very mindful of what the dictates of science are.”

Not sure what he’s telegraphing here. His boss says the following, or at least did immediately after being elected:

The science is beyond dispute and the facts are clear. Sea levels are rising. Coastlines are shrinking. We’ve seen record drought, spreading famine, and storms that are growing stronger with each passing hurricane season.

Stern is presumably saying one of two things. First, maybe this isn’t quite so settled as all that — a fairly obvious point to anyone not looking to tap the issue for billions of dollars to underwrite social engineering or otherwise grind an ideological axe.

Alternately, he could be saying that there are no technological ways out short of murderous de-industrialization (Hoffert et al, Science 2002), which runs counter to Bill Clinton’s claim that the relevant technology is on the shelf and we’re all just too lazy and cheap to take advantage of it.

It’s worth finding out which it is, and I’m sure we will — by actions, if not by frank admission.


Subscribe to National Review