Why Greta’s Climate Panic Failed
By Michael Shellenberger via Substack
In recognizing nuclear and natural gas as green, the European Union has affirmed human well-being, and environmental progress, over renewable energy dogmatism
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (left) and French President Emmanuel Macron (right) agreed to reject climate activist Greta Thunberg’s demand that Europe not finance nuclear and natural gas plants.
The most influential climate activist in the world, with no runner-up in sight, is Greta Thunberg.
Time Magazine named her Person of the Year for 2019 and it feels inevitable that she will win the Nobel Peace Prize eventually if not this year.
With her 14 million followers on Instagram and her five million followers on Twitter, everything she does is news. Reuters named as one its key “Moments from 2021” Thunberg singing and dancing at a promotional “Climate Live” concert in advance of the United Nations climate talks.
But for all of her fame, Thunberg’s political influence has never been lower.
Two weeks ago, Thunberg and other climate leaders demanded that Europe not finance either nuclear plants or natural gas production, but the European Commission rejected her demands and confirmed Saturday that both nuclear and natural gas will be counted as sustainable and thus be available for for European Union financing. The EU “sustainable taxonomy” deal appears to be a compromise between nuclear-reliant France and increasingly gas-reliant Germany.
Thunberg remains powerful. Many analysts until recently thought shareholder activism aimed at forcing divestment from oil and gas production was strictly symbolic, merely a way to draw attention to the need for public policy. It’s now clear that such activism was remarkably effective in suppressing private sector financing for oil and gas exploration and production, contributing to shortages. That was, in no small measure, due to Thunberg’s extraordinary reach and emotional connection to the young, including college students, and the children of financial, journalistic, and intellectual elites.
But the EU’s decision to ratify gas and nuclear as green is a major blow to Thunberg and the climate-renewables lobby.
It comes on the heels of: the collapse of Biden’s climate agenda in part because it would make the US dangerously dependent on renewables; the hypocrisy of European climate diplomats at United Nations climate talks, demanding Africa remain pure of coal and gas as European energy ministers scrambled to burn coal and acquire natural gas; and, now, Germany’s replacement of half of its nuclear plants with coal and natural gas.
What’s going on? Just a few weeks ago it appeared that Europe was “transitioning to renewables.”
The United Nations is using a talking dinosaur to urge poor African nations to not use fossil fuels while providing information to global elites about which airports in which they can land their private jets for next week’s climate change meeting pic.twitter.com/EolYI97c2t
— Michael Shellenberger (@ShellenbergerMD) October 30, 2021
Why is it now embracing natural gas and nuclear? And why were Thunberg and the climate movement defeated in Europe, the place where they were presumed to be the strongest? And what does it mean for what happens next?
(TLB) published this article by Michael Shellenberger via Substack with our appreciation for the perspective.
Michael Shellenberger is a Time Magazine “Hero of the Environment,”Green Book Award winner, and the founder and president of Environmental Progress. He is author of just launched book San Fransicko (Harper Collins) and the best-selling book, Apocalypse Never (Harper Collins June 30, 2020). Subscribe To Michael’s substack here
Header featured image (edited) credit: Gretta Thunberg/Getty Images
Stay tuned to …
The Liberty Beacon Project is now expanding at a near exponential rate, and for this we are grateful and excited! But we must also be practical. For 7 years we have not asked for any donations, and have built this project with our own funds as we grew. We are now experiencing ever increasing growing pains due to the large number of websites and projects we represent. So we have just installed donation buttons on our websites and ask that you consider this when you visit them. Nothing is too small. We thank you for all your support and your considerations … (TLB)
Comment Policy: As a privately owned web site, we reserve the right to remove comments that contain spam, advertising, vulgarity, threats of violence, racism, or personal/abusive attacks on other users. This also applies to trolling, the use of more than one alias, or just intentional mischief. Enforcement of this policy is at the discretion of this websites administrators. Repeat offenders may be blocked or permanently banned without prior warning.
Disclaimer: TLB websites contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to our readers under the provisions of “fair use” in an effort to advance a better understanding of political, health, economic and social issues. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving it for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than “fair use” you must request permission from the copyright owner.
Disclaimer: The information and opinions shared are for informational purposes only including, but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material are not intended as medical advice or instruction. Nothing mentioned is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.