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Premiers Must Embrace Questioning Climate Ideology, Urges John Robson


Canada’s premiers are finally pushing back on the carbon tax as it hits harder and the magic money rebates get less convincing. And you might think it’s weird that the Trudeau administration really believe trace elements of a gas vital to life are the deadliest peril Canadians and humans generally face. But what’s really weird is that the people fighting back all swear they believe these dodgy propositions too. Whatever happened to intelligent thought, or even mindless partisan bickering?

The vexing carbon tax went up on April 1 from $65 per tonne to $80. And surely it’s hard to believe Canadians paying a few more cents per litre of gas will make the difference between the sky catching fire and getting back to the supposedly splendid weather they had in the 1870s, which in fact was apparently pretty awful. Or that none of these people, with their huge staffs and passionate rhetoric, made any attempt to present a coherent case that the tax is not necessary. Instead, they tried to rally round the white flag.
Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe, for instance, addressed the House of Commons Standing Committee on Government Operations and Estimates on March 27 to explain his drastic refusal to collect the federal carbon tax on natural gas and electric home heating. He said the province was already leading with aggressive climate policies and couldn’t afford to do anything dramatic. Mind you, “we need to work together with our national partners on achieving global solutions.” Just that.
Alberta Premier Danielle Smith and New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs showed up on March 28 and insisted that the problem was real, they were doing a great job, so was Canada, and we should not do anything drastic. Higgs didn’t say the tax was unnecessary. He said it was too big and too small at once: “We need to think bigger. Our situation in Canada is that we’re too isolated in our bubble. We’re not reaching our potential to help the world and we’re causing huge financial impact right across this country on our citizens, and it’s unnecessary.” Meaning sell liquid natural gas (LNG) to countries currently using coal, thus doing well by doing good.

Smith was even less clear, which can’t have been easy. Alberta evidently suspended its 9 cents-per-litre tax on fuel in 2023 because the price of gas had gone up, and is now bringing it back at 13 cents, but it’s OK because it’s to build roads. Trudeau’s tax is bad because it’s to save the planet.

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Rallying round the white flag is as foolish as it sounds. And it’s a chronic problem for Canadian conservatives, who love to grouse about overspending and waste but hate actual cuts. And good luck getting any of them to name one single thing governments cannot do or should not.

Apparently principles are a slippery slope to coherent, effective action, which for some reason they fear. But surely at least one of them has some idea that there is a contrary argument.

That CO2 is “pollution,” the weather is getting scarily worse, and the very gentle warming since around 1850 is without unprecedent, are repeated so often you might believe they have strong factual support. But not even the supposedly authoritative U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change “Working Group” papers offer a clear and decisive pattern of extreme weather increasing. Instead, the IPCC paints a complex picture of things deteriorating in some places and improving in others depending on what you’re looking at, where, and over what time scale, and frets over what may come. But currently, for instance, hurricanes in the United States are getting less common not more so, as are wildfires in Canada.

On the other hand, the evidence is clear that temperature has fluctuated naturally since forever, often very suddenly. And our mercifully warm “interglacial” has been cycling downward since the Holocene Climatic Optimum peaked some 8,000 years ago, much warmer than today despite a shrill, ignorant chorus of “hottest year in 125,000.”

Nothing unusual is happening. But the alarmists tried to whack the Medieval Warm Period, and the general pattern of fluctuation, mostly using one “hockey stick” graph shown by Canadian experts to have several flaws. And weirdly, it worked so well that any politician planning to quibble on policy first rushes into the Church of Climate and genuflects.

Sure, public affairs is prone to fads, and a fad backed by state power is always dangerous. But this one has swept all before it with baffling speed and completeness. Whatever happened in Canada to create such conspicuous lack of dissent, critical thinking, or simple courage on this issue?

It’s not weird when politicians fight. It’s weird when they surrender first. But on climate, they reliably do.

Views expressed in this article are opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

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