Climate: Are there any grownups in the UN?

by Benoit Rittaud © 2019– translated from the French original

We know the climate circus season is coming when terrifying reports about the future of the planet spring up like mushrooms. The 25th “Conference of the Parties” COP25, which will take place in Madrid in early December, offers a new opportunity to confirm this observation.

The mushroom of the day has been written by the United Nations Environment Program. In the 2019 edition of their “Emission Gap” report, they look at the difference between actual emissions of satanic gases (CO2 and a few others) and emissions that were expected at some preceding circus, also comparing with the so-called virtuous trajectory that we should follow to “stay under the +2 °C limit”.

This new report has a great merit: it provides a conclusive proof that energy transitions, carbon taxes, emission quotas and other fashionable constraints have no effect whatsoever, since global emissions are still on the rise. They increased by 1.5% per year on average over the last decade and show no sign of a downturn.

Laurent Fabius’ cocardier triumphalism in the end of the glorious COP21 in 2015 in Paris, where humanity was to meet the path of redemption, is over.

There is no getting away from these facts. We can feel ashamed, organize whingeing protests, give up our cars, convert to veganism, but nothing will do: developing countries want to have the same standard of living as ours. Go figure. That’s why they increase their energy consumption (especially China) and, therefore, their CO2 emissions. The pace is so fast that nothing will reverse the trend in the medium run, even if you keep up your good resolution to turn off the tap while brushing your teeth.

In a world ruled by grownups, such crystal-clear facts would easily lead to a logical conclusion: since, despite all UN processions, we are not in a position to reduce global emissions, we must address the question differently.

Obviously, the best would be to acknowledge that the climate we experience at now is not worse than the climate of past centuries; that the global warming is of a rather weak order of magnitude and provides at least as many advantages as disadvantages; that nothing indicates that the extreme events are more powerful or more numerous than those of the past (unlike the smartphones we have, that allow us to spread in real time more and more videos of these events on social networks); or that carbon dioxide is the primary food of plants and, as such, is a blessing for the biosphere. (According to NASA’s satellites, CO2 was the main driver of the 18 million square kilometers greening of the planet observed over the past 35 years.)

Without going as far as to accept these obvious but politically incorrect facts, a sensible people could nevertheless consider that if we can’t act on a cause, then we must act on what might be the consequences. In short: opening the umbrella instead of dancing to stop the rain.

Of course, this is not what is proposed in the 2019 report on emissions gap, by far. As if nothing had happened, this report echoes the most unrealistic recommendations to reverse the trend. In its carbo-centered fantasies, the rise in emissions suddenly stops next year, before the world commits to a resolute decline. The scenario is more or less equivalent to the idea that a car running at full speed on the highway can, “if its driver is trying hard,” take a right-angle turn without too much damage.

We may wonder if the authors really believe what they say or if, in fact, the report has been written by an unconscious robot, unaware of the aberrations made up by its limited vision resulting of some narrow-minded algorithms implemented in it which force it to carry out its absurd and useless task.

Anyway, no doubt that many right-thinking voices will use this report as an argument to ask for more self-flagellation to avoid punishment imposed by the climate bogeyman. May the few grownups who will pass by there try to reassure these voices of this small world. By the way, considering the huge costs of the measures they suggest, it is high time to think about blowing the whistle to end the game.

Benoit Rittaud’s blog:

Association des Climatos-Réalistes


  1. Otto

    … transitions, carbon taxes, emission quotas and other fashionable constraints have no effect whatsoever, since global emissions are still on the rise.’
    Perhaps that might mean we have to cut back even more as it’s not enough!
    Mr Devil’s Advocate.

  2. James Strachan

    I am very interested in your work
    This version of the article clearly attempted to perfectly translate what may have been sophisticated language in the original. Unfortunately the result was kind of a disaster I am sorry to say. Maybe it would have been better to summarize versus perfectly translate.

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