Well, this is fun. Our pals at the center-left Breakthrough Institute, Ted Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger, suggest today that if global warming is truly a catastrophic problem the only people who could solve it are . . . conservatives. And there’s my happy mug on their web page display today, next to
Dr. Evil the Koch brothers (and my sometimes debate partner Robert Bryce):
This fits with what I’ve been saying for a long time: if severe climate change turns out to be a problem, Al Gore is the last person you’d trust to deal with it. Nixon to China and all that. But I’ll let Michael and Ted explain:
Hayward and Bryce are two of the most respected writers on energy and the environment on the Right. Both are highly skeptical that global warming poses a major threat. Both regularly criticize climate scientists and climate models. Both men are regularly attacked by liberal organizations like Media Matters for working for organizations, the American Enterprise Institute and Manhattan Institute, respectively, that have taken money from both Exxon and the Koch brothers. And yet both men are full-throated advocates for what Bryce calls “N2N” — accelerating the transition from coal to natural gas and then to nuclear.
Arguably, the climate-energy paradox is a bigger problem for the Left than the Right. One cannot logically claim that carbon emissions pose a catastrophic threat to human civilization and then oppose the only two technologies capable of immediately and significantly reducing them. And yet this is precisely the position of Al Gore, Bill McKibben, the Sierra Club, NRDC, and the bulk of the environmental movement.