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November 19, 2009

Climate Change: Do you want Congress to spend $2 to Save $1?

You may not believe global warming is happening. Or, you may not believe humans are responsible for it.

But for the sake of argument, let’s assume human-caused global warming is indeed happening. Conceding this, it turns out that . . .

The effort to curb carbon emissions will be far more harmful than global warming itself!

Please send Congress a letter demanding that they defeat the cap & trade bill and oppose any global climate treaty.

Here’s what I wrote in my letter . . .

Efforts to curb global warming make as much sense as spending $2 to save $1.

The International Energy Agency believes we must cut carbon emissions in half if we want to stop global warming. They also estimate that this will cost $45 trillion.  http://www.iea.org/press/pressdetail.asp?PRESS_REL_ID=263

Yet Dr. William Nordhaus of Yale calculates that the economic losses from global warming, if we do nothing to curb carbon emissions, will reach just $22 trillion this century. Dr. Nordhaus also estimates that proposals made by The Stern Review and Al Gore to curb carbon emissions would cost $17-25 trillion more than doing nothing:  http://nordhaus.econ.yale.edu/dice_mss_072407_all.pdf

And all of this assumes an effort in which the whole world cooperates, with no cheating!

If Congress imposes cap & trade on the U.S., or ratifies a climate treaty, it will not stop global warming. Instead, it will only damage the U.S. economy and drive more jobs overseas. That’s because  . . .

Many developing countries will not agree to participate!

We would be hypocrites to condemn them for this. They only want what we already have. Most importantly, there are sound environmental reasons why we should want them to gain our level of affluence . . . 

Wealthy nations like ours do better at protecting the environment!

* Our water is safer and our air is cleaner.
* We can afford to protect species from extinction.
* We can afford research that constantly discovers how to do more with less, allowing us to grow more and more affluent while imposing fewer burdens on the environment.

Environmental protection will benefit from a wealthier world, not suffer from it.

Developing nations will not sacrifice their progress just to please Western politicians, and we shouldn’t want them to do so. If we really care about the environment, then we need these nations to become richer, not poorer.

The proposed schemes for a cap & trade law and a global climate treaty will . . .

* Fail because of cheating or non-participation
* Cost at least $2 for every $1 we gain, and probably far more
* Impoverish America and the world, thereby destroying the innovation and environmental protections that free market affluence makes possible

Do not spend $2 in a vain attempt to save $1. Do not support a scheme that cannot work. Instead, support the economic progress that makes environmental protection possible. Do this by opposing the cap & trade bill, and any global climate treaty. Let free market innovation and affluence pave the way for solutions that will really work.

END LETTER

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Let’s Downsize DC!

James Wilson
Assistant Communications Director
DownsizeDC.org

SOURCES

Information that inspired links and points above originated with Global Warming 101: Costs by William Yeatman at GlobalWarming.org.

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