Skinning The Cat With Climate Justice 9/12/11
By Art Horn, Meteorologist
In early November of 2010 President Obama’s attempt to pass a bill that would bring a Cap-and-Trade system to the United States to control emissions of carbon dioxide failed. After this defeat he proclaimed “Cap-and-Trade was just one way of skinning the cat, it was a means not and end. I’m going to be looking for other means to address this problem” He has found that means, it’s called climate justice. Actually he had it in his back pocket all the time.
Never heard of climate justice? It’s been around for about 20 years. It was given life by President Clinton on February 11th 1994 with executive order 12898. It required no less than 11 federal agencies to “make achieving environmental justice part of its mission by identifying and addressing, as appropriate, disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects of its programs, policies, and activities on minority populations and low-income populations.”
By now you must be asking what is climate justice? The organization Mobilization for Climate Justice defines it as “a vision to dissolve and alleviate the unequal burdens created by climate change. As a form of environmental justice, climate justice is the fair treatment of all people and freedom from discrimination with the creation of policies and projects that address climate change and the systems that create climate change and perpetuate discrimination.”
So the idea is to make the adverse effects of global warming (climate change) a moral issue. It infers that anyone, any government or government policy, or any company that in any way produces something that causes global warming and therefore climate change is discriminating against an individual or group that can’t fight back due to their minority status or low-income. It is therefore immoral for any entity to produce anything that causes climate change and that there should be consequences for those actions. Depriving anyone of the right to climate justice is a crime against that person’s right to prosper from a healthy climate, free from man made global warming. To president Obama the founding fathers of this country, many who were slave owners, intended us to have life, liberty and the pursuit of climate justice.
Perhaps the key phrase in the above definition of climate justice is “the creation of policies and projects that address climate change and the systems that create climate change.” One of those “systems” that create climate change would be the way we make energy through the use of fossil fuels. Climate justice proclaims that using fossil fuels to make energy is causing the earth’s temperature to rise and that doing so is therefore immoral. Those “systems” that allegedly cause climate change include the oil companies and utilities that generate electricity along with anything else that produces carbon dioxide such as you and I.
The goal of climate justice is to stop the world from using fossil fuels to make energy because it is immoral and discriminatory. This is the blade that President Obama hopes to use to skin the cat. By issuing a memorandum of understanding on environmental justice and executive order number 12898 in August of this year, President Obama hopes to develop policies that will empower people who are discriminated against by those polluting entities that are creating climate change. That is the way around his Cap-and-Trade defeat. He said “I’m going to be looking for other means to address this problem”
The potential destructive power of this policy can’t be underestimated, especially if he is re-elected. Armed with this “moral” weapon the president and his supporters will be able to go after all energy companies that use fossil fuels. One of his most powerful allies in this endeavor is Lisa Jackson, Chief of the EPA. Jackson is an ardent climate justice proponent. She has been a leader in the fight to legitimize the concept of climate justice. There is even a climate justice website within the EPA! Jackson is quoted as saying “We want to put and end to the days when public health and economic potential are harmed by disproportionate exposure to pollution.” The word “pollution” is code for carbon dioxide.
Climate justice is deeply rooted in the policies and ideologies of the United Nations. In 2000 the first Climate Justice Summit took place at The Hague, the Netherlands along side the 6th Conference of Parties (COP6) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. The Climate Summit proclaimed “We affirm that climate change is a rights issue. It affects our livelihoods, our health, our children and our natural resources. We will build alliances across states and boarders to oppose climate change patterns and advocate for and practice of sustainable development.” The words “climate change patterns” are code for any government or company that produces carbon dioxide.
In 2010 the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth took place in Tiquipaya, Bolivia. At the conference issues of climate justice were discussed. These discussions resulted in a People’s Agreement calling for the possible formation of an International Climate and Environmental Justice Tribunal. If developed this international environmental court could eventually prosecute companies or whole nations for the crime of endangering climate justice by using fossil fuels to make energy. Though the conference did not advocate the establishment of such a court the objective was “to asses whether an International Climate Justice Tribunal or alternatively an International Environmental Court is necessary or appropriate as a means to enforce commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.” Even thinking of these possibilities should send chills down the back of freedom loving people.
President Obama and his administration are apparently in lock step with the United Nations and its pursuit of climate justice. If implemented as a policy here in the United States, climate justice, as a matter of enforceable law, would introduce uncertainty factors into the energy markets that would dwarf anything we’ve seen so far. The resulting lawsuits against all energy producing companies and the resulting price increases as a result of multi-billion dollar settlements could be catastrophic to a nation that is already teetering on the brink of collapse from overspending and suffocating EPA regulations.
Climate justice has nothing to do with the climate and nothing to do with justice. It is a covert vehicle for socialists to re-invent the way we make energy and to propel the radial environmental movement into a leadership roll in American government. The goal of the advocates of this agenda is to supplant the Constitution of The United States with climate justice and therefore establish radical environmental policies as the rule of the land. Amazingly our own president seems to be moving in this direction. He did say just before the election that “We are days away from fundamentally transforming The United States of America.” Climate justice is part of that transformation and will be the weapon of choice to skin our energy producing companies.