According to Yahoo News: At the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Scotland, Swedish activist, Greta Thunberg, abruptly exited a panel discussion on the role of finance in protecting forests and supporting the rights of Indigenous peoples and local communities. Following a statement from Samuel A. Jinapor, a representative of the Ghanian Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, Thunberg walked across the stage, shouting, “Thanks for greenwashing,” before leaving the room.
It is often the case that representatives of corporations and governments can be accused of making appropriate statements of future efforts to curb fossil fuels, combat global warming, reduce carbon emissions, etc. to mollify critics and appease environmentalists, as according to Thunberg, “greenwashing”. But one can argue that proponents for climate action, save the planet, are also “greenwashing”.
Not to dispute science but to claim we are all doomed, that the planet will become uninhabitable by 2100 if humans do not reduce their carbon footprint seems highly exaggerated. At the same time, the strident voices say we must abandon fossil fuels today or there is no tomorrow is total green hyperbole.
By being so radical, the energy realities of the here and now are lost in the blinding green snow. Biden as the president attempted from the beginning to placate the so-called progressive left and be perceived as “green” and enlightened. However, his erratic energy pronouncements and policies echoed by his green team are hollow now in the post-pandemic world of energy need. Nowhere is it more evident than in our own area of western Pennsylvania. As Thanksgiving approaches gasoline prices are approaching $4.00 a gallon. No matter how one heats their home this winter the costs are going up in part due to the current administration’s lame energy policy or lack thereof. To think rural Western Pennsylvanians who heat with natural gas, propane, oil, and even wood will rely on solar, wind, or bio-green something by 2030 is totally untenable, unattainable, and unaffordable. To think city residents in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia who now heat with natural gas or oil are all going to electric heat anytime soon is ludicrous without restrictive government intervention, massive subsidies, let alone logistically impossible.
After declaring fossil fuels are the enemy with actions that dissuade oil and gas domestic exploration and development. Saying no to pipelines and drilling on federal lands. The Biden team scrambles trying to change energy and market reality. Senator Chuck Schumer said this week, “…we need immediate relief at the gas pump and the place to look is the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.” Analysts as well as the U.S Energy Information Administration EIA agree would only produce a short-term effect, as it would not increase US production capacity, and we the taxpayers have to pay to replenish.
OPEC said to Biden if you want more oil, pump it yourself, rebuffing his calls for increased production. According to Oilprice, John Kerry the White House climate envoy, defending Biden said, “He’s asking them to boost production in the immediate moment and as the transition cuts in, there won’t be a need as you deploy the solar panels, deploy the transmission lines, as you build out the grid”. This sounds like future double talk, no to gas lines, yes to high tension transmission lines. Look for expanded and draconian government infringements on private land. In his own defense, Biden said. “On the surface it seems like irony, referring to his calls to OPEC. “But the truth of the matter is …everyone knows the idea that we are going to be able to move to renewable energy overnight … it’s just not rational.
Meanwhile, the President has expanded his call list asking China, Japan, and other countries to tap their oil reserves to save his greenwashing, and propping up his autocratic and misguided energy policy. Biden is also diverting attention to his energy dysfunction by calling for the Federal Trade Commission to investigate U.S oil and gas companies, saying there was mounting evidence of anti-consumer behavior that is keeping fuel prices elevated. He is asking the FTC to dig deeper into possible “illegal conduct” in the market.
Perhaps the oil industry has something to offer. The problem is some people don’t want to talk, according to Vicki Hollub, president and CEO of Occidental Petroleum Corp. Occidental, a leading producer in the top shale plays in the Permian and Denver-Julesburg basins, stands ready to discuss impactful decarbonization and the role of fossil fuels in a transitional energy economy. Perhaps Joe Biden could call on US oil and gas producers to help him out, and they could find common ground.