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The Fantastic World of Paul Driessen

February 17th 2009 17:47
Paul Driessen, (hack) author and opinionator, sticks with a tried and true strategy: imagine a planet where evil environmentalists control everything, and then you can blame regular environmentalists for the problems of this one. This is his latest from townhall.com.

Eco-Colonialism Degrades Africa

They claim there is no longer any debate over human-caused global warming – but ignore thousands of scientists who say human CO2 emissions are not the primary cause of climate changes

Aside from “thousands” being a bit of a stretch, the consensus argument is based not just on the number of scientists who support AGW, but also (and arguably more) on the number of scientific papers that provide evidence for it. Out of tens of thousands of papers on climate that have published over the last ten years or so, there have been, at most, (I)ten papers that have provided any real argument against AGW. Even Benny Peiser, who claimed to have found thirty, was in the end forced to scale that claim back to one.

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More on the consensus:

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Abundant, reliable, affordable electricity could power homes, offices, factories, schools and hospitals, create jobs, bring clean running water, and generate health and prosperity. But Rainforest Action Network and other pressure groups oppose coal and natural gas electricity generation on the grounds of climate change, and hydroelectric and nuclear power for other ideological reasons. They promote wind turbines and solar panels that provide electricity unreliably and in amounts too small to meet any but the most rudimentary needs."

You mean they promote projects like this?

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He also acts like the main problem is adequate energy. The real problem is not so much that there isn’t enough energy, but that the grid that provides that electricity to consumers is unreliable and doesn’t reach everyone (According to the last article on the following list, only one in four Africans in the sub-Saharan region has access to grid electricity, and only one in ten Africans in rural areas). In addition, those who are connected have to spend a significant portion of their budget on electricity bills.

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Solar energy, on the other hand, allows families to create energy adequate for their needs, on their own. I have to ask, why doesn’t Paul Driessen want Africans to be self-sufficient?

Few climate actions, however, come close to the travesty being played out in nearby Chad. There the government has banned the manufacture, importation and use of charcoal

Driessen’s right about the travesty part, but he doesn’t tell the whole story. The implication of the article is that the Chadian government imposed the ban to combat global climate change, when in reality the main reason was to preserve Chad’s remaining forests and prevent desertification, which is a big problem in that country.

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And how are the government’s actions the fault of environmental groups? It’s like blaming inner city social workers for a rise in carjackings. Unless Driessen can show how environmentalists implemented or are directly responsible for the policy, might I suggest he dial it back?
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