The climate change "debate" is getting stranger every day. The CEI, having just informed us that "CO2 is life," is now complaining that Al Gore's plane trips are producing too much of this miracle-working molecule, thereby exacerbating an environmental crisis that doesn't exist.
Some commentators inform us that it's far too late to do anything but adapt to a problem they previously said was imaginary. Others point out that we could've taken effective action over a decade ago, if only that dirty cocksucker Al Gore hadn't tied our hands.
You remember, I'm sure, how the political and business establishment was just dying to take aggressive action against climate change back in the nineties, but kept being thwarted at every turn by the arch-fiend Gore (who actually used the awesome power of his office to make research, innovation, and entrepreneurship punishable by death).
Meanwhile, Debra J. Saunders, having already taken Gore to task for his fearmongering, now chides him for his sunny optimism:
Sacrifice? Struggle? Wrenching transformation? Forget that. Fighting global warming will be good for your bottom line.Don't you just hate that awful Al Gore, with his stupid positive outlook? Thank heavens you'll never hear delusional nonsense like Gore's from the hardheaded realists in America's boardrooms.
Don't mention the part about improving the bottom line to the folks at the Rocky Mountain News; they're currently howling about Gore's slavish devotion to the heresy of central planning, which makes him incapable of grasping fun facts like these:
Without setting goals or timetables to reduce greenhouse gases, the United States has reduced its "energy intensity" - the amount of energy we consume per dollar - nearly twice as fast as the EU over the past decade. That's because U.S. entrepreneurs have been free to invest in cleaner, more efficient technologies that will actually reduce greenhouse-gas emissions over time, rather than scrambling to meet arbitrary caps.See, that's the difference between the USA and the EU. In Europe, socialist tyranny has made it impossible for entrepreneurs to invest in "cleaner, more efficient technologies." That's why you never, ever see investment in green technology over there. (Sure, Forbes.com says "the US...lags Europe in its adoption of clean technologies." But what do they know?)
Putting aside the tenuous connection between energy use and GDP in the US economy, could there be another reason for our decline in energy intensity? The bong-sucking longhairs at the US Department of Energy seem to think so:
[T]he simple E/GDP ratio measure of energy intensity overstates the extent to which energy efficiency improvements have occurred in the economy, because factors the affect intensity that are unrelated to the efficiency of energy use are included in the ratio....One example of such an 'other explanatory factor' is the shift of economic activity out of the industrial sector and manufacturing, that use large amounts of energy per unit of output, into service industries that use only very small amounts of energy. A shift from steel to electronics influences the simple E/GDP ratio, but is not indicative of improvements in energy efficiency.All that's on the one hand. On the other, Al Gore grew a beard. You just can't trust a guy like that.
The new system of energy intensity indicators...provides a truer measure of changes in energy intensity that are associated with improvements in the efficient use of energy....between 1985 and 2004, energy intensity, based on total energy and as measured by our newly developed index fell by 10%, considerably less than the simple E/GDP ratio would indicate. This 10% change over this 19-year period corresponds to an average annual percentage reduction in energy intensity of 0.56% per year. Other explanatory factors unrelated to efficiency improvements contributed to a decline in energy use of 17% between 1985 and 2004.