You undoubtedly are aware that the international environmental movement has almost entirely been taken over and consumed by the climate change scare; and you also cannot help but be aware of the constant drumbeat of attacks by environmentalists on the U.S. government, particularly under President Trump, for its failure to reduce carbon emissions sufficiently to “save the planet.” At the same time, you are a reader of the Manhattan Contrarian. Therefore, you know that China is not only not reducing its own carbon emissions, but instead has well more than tripled them over the past twenty years (during which period U.S. emissions have declined modestly by about 15%); and today China is in the midst of a new round of massive expansion of its fossil fuel energy generation capacity, particularly with respect to the most carbon-intensive fuel, coal.
China currently has 249.6 gigawatts (GW) of coal-fired capacity under development (97.8 GW under construction and 151.8 GW in planning), a 21% increase over end-2019 (205.9 GW). The amount of capacity under development (249.6 GW) is larger than the [entire] coal fleets of the United States (246.2 GW) or India (229.0 GW).
So then surely the major environmental organizations must be coming down hard on China? Wrong. Indeed, many of them are full of praise for China for its “climate leadership.” Sure, China gives plenty of empty lip service to Western climate orthodoxy; but could these environmentalists really be so dense as to be fooled by that, even as information as to China’s soaring emissions and hundreds of new coal plants is readily available (if not widely publicized by the CCP)?
If you want some insight as to what is going on, a good place to start is a new report out from the Global Warming Policy Foundation by Patricia Adams titled “The Red and Green: China’s Useful Idiots.” (Full disclosure: I am a member of the board — recently elected chairman! — of the GWPF’s American affiliate.). Ms. Adams documents how Beijing is able to use permission to operate in China as a lever to suppress any and all criticism of the regime:
Following a 2017 law governing foreign NGOs, most foreign advocacy organisations . . . were either extremely restricted or effectively banned. Prior to the NGO law, some 7000 foreign organisations operated in China. Today that number is 553. . . . Fewer than 4% of the 553 organizations that remain are what a Westerner would consider an environmental group, and all do Beijing’s bidding.
As with other foreign organisations still permitted to operate in the country, green groups must be formally sponsored by a designated state agency or government department. However, despite the name, the sponsor is not passive, but instead is responsible for monitoring and supervising the environmental groups’ work, sometimes even working hand-in-glove with them on joint projects. Supervision also includes ‘regulatory talks’ and inspections of premises. Foreign NGOs are required to submit annual plans for projects and use of funds to their sponsor for approval. Foreign organisations must also agree to close supervision by the Ministry of Public Security. Failure to comply with the provisions of the NGO law can result in seizure of assets, detention of staff, and a ban on future efforts to work in the country for five years, all without any recourse to appeal. . . .
With that background, let’s take a look at some recent statements by major environmental organizations about China’s record:
Environmental Defense Fund, “Why China is at the center of our climate strategy” (current website): “As the United States steps away from global climate leadership, China is stepping up. EDF has been working there for more than 25 years, and now we’re helping the Chinese government launch a national system to control climate pollution. . . . Fortunately, China is serious about climate action. . . . Over the past two decades, EDF has helped China establish a variety of market-based incentives to cut emissions and strengthen enforcement of environmental laws. These projects are part of the reason that EDF has served as an advisor on China’s highest international advisory body on the environment, which reports directly to the Premier every year. . . . By welcoming EDF’s expertise and launching its national carbon market, China is proving that it’s ready to tackle climate change.”
Natural Resources Defense Council, “Our Work > International > China” (current website): “NRDC has been supporting China’s sustainable development by providing technical and legal expertise for more than 20 years. Since the mid 1990s, we have been collaborating with a wide range of Chinese and international partners to facilitate exchanges and learning, develop innovative policy tools, and introduce and demonstrate best practices in energy efficiency, clean energy, pollution controls, wildlife conservation, and low-carbon urbanization. . . . Will China save the planet? As climate studies grow more urgent and the Trump administration continues to undermine climate action, all eyes are on the world’s biggest country. . . .”
World Wildlife Fund. From Xinhua (official Chinese news agency), October 1, 2020, “China’s commitment to fighting climate change strong, important: WWF Int’l official”: “‘It is good to have China talking with the EU (European Union) and Canada trying to move this agenda forward,’ Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, leader of WWF global climate and energy practice, told Xinhua in a recent interview. Pulgar-Vidal, former Peruvian environment minister, said China’s commitment sends a strong message and could fill the void that the United States is leaving by withdrawing from the 2015 Paris Agreement, the landmark deal to cut emissions of planet-warming gases.”
Greenpeace, per spokesman Yixiu Wu, speaking ahead of a May 2017 summit held by Xi Jinping in connection with the “Belt and Road Initiative,” quoted in Climate Change News: “Given that more than half of China’s outbound investment is in the energy and infrastructure sectors, the belt and road initiative is an opportunity for China to play a leading role in the transition from fossil fuels and toward renewable energy. Prioritising sustainability will cement China’s legacy as it assumes a larger role on the global stage.”
Basically, every one of them is fully compromised, if not bought and paId for. Just wondering if you’ve ever read a word in any mainstream source mentioning the lack of objectivity of these or any other major environmental groups. Of course you haven’t. I guess that, in order to not be able to see that something is wildly amiss here, it helps to be filled with visceral hatred of the United States.