What charles koch really thinks about climate change – the washington post gas unlimited


Charles Koch had been talking for more than an hour — about markets, philosophy and why he is spending hundreds of millions of dollars to fund university research, particularly in economics — when the subject turned to climate change. The question, from The Washington Post’s Jim Tankersley (who wrote about the main thrust of the interview here), was whether any evidence could persuade the libertarian billionaire that regulation of carbon emissions is necessary to head off disastrous global warming.

Here, then, we provide an annotated transcript of those comments, highlighting areas where Koch does — and, where he doesn’t — align with what scientists have to say about the subject, and more generally exploring his remarks. The questions are Tankersley’s, the answers are Koch’s and the notes are from energy and environment writer Chris Mooney.

Charles Koch: Yeah. b games zombie If we apply the republic of science here and use the scientific method rather than of trying to shut down and shout down and punish anybody who wants to enter into debate about it. And not do it through corporate welfare. Look at what’s happened. What’s being done is symbolic, even under their own thing. It’s not reducing CO2. Not approving the Keystone pipeline – so the oil is produced, now it’s shipped by rail and shipped to China, rather than by pipeline. So that’s symbolic. And making wood pellets, subsidizing making wood pellets, I mean, we’re back in medieval times, we’re going to burn wood. And shipping them to Europe. How is that reducing CO2? And we’re going to put a tax on natural gas, on BTUs, here, so we’ll be making less chemicals and fertilizers here, and we’ll be doing it in China, where they make it out of coal gas, and per unit the production has five times the CO2 emissions. m gasbuddy app So these things don’t make sense.

Koch’s point about wood pellets suggests a surprising alignment with many environmentalists and scientists, who have raised concerns about the potential carbon consequences of burning wood for electricity. The argument that failing to approve the Keystone XL Pipeline was at least partly “symbolic” in a national and global context, meanwhile, also has its strength — as the State Department itself explained in rejecting TransCanada’s permit application, “granting a Presidential Permit for this proposed Project would undermine U.S. climate leadership and thereby have an adverse impact on encouraging other States to combat climate change and work to achieve and implement a meaningful global climate agreement.”

However, the idea that mainstream scientists are trying to “shut down” debate on climate change is another matter. electricity projects for 4th graders These researchers would probably counter that any debate, such as it is, should occur in the peer-reviewed scientific literature and in official scientific processes like that conducted by the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. They would further state that in that literature and in those documents, the consensus that humans are causing global warming is crystal clear.

The International Monetary Fund, for instance, recently noted that “Climate change is expected to significantly impact the global economy in the coming decades.” A global average temperature rise of 3 degrees Celsius, which the world has now pledged to avoid, could cost 2 percent of global GDP, notes a recent IMF research note. Granted, cost estimates range widely, and impacts would be varied and highly uneven around the world.

The IMF also generally favors setting a price on carbon in order to counter climate change and carry out the objectives of the Paris climate accord. And while the aforementioned research note remarks that carbon pricing will surely lead to economic costs, it adds that these can be offset by wise policy design. Or as the report notes: “Revenues could be used for lowering taxes on labor and capital that distort economic incentives, producing a counteracting economic benefit to the costs of higher energy prices. e gaskell The economic costs of carbon tax shifts (ignoring environmental benefits) might even be negative for modest emissions reductions if revenues cut an especially distorting tax. Revenues could be used for new spending or reducing debt, though the social benefits should be comparable to those from cutting harmful taxes.”

CK: China and India are going to do what they’re going to do anyway. So we just hurt ourselves, even under their theory. And their theories aren’t working very well, because they keep predicting all these theories that aren’t happening. And if they start happening, or they get evidence, and they’ll enter into a debate rather than shut down anybody who has questions about it or wants to challenge any aspect of it, then I get a lot more sympathetic, yeah. If we’re all trying to find the truth of the matter, then I’m all for that. I’m all for applying the Republic of Science on climate, as I am on anything.

CK: I think it will, just like we’re doing all these things (at Koch Industries). We’re investing heavily in biofuels, in biotechnology, in information technology, to do this. Why do we do it? Because we think through innovation we can make it competitive, better than competitive. electricity voltage in norway And that’s the way to go. And like, Bill Gates is raising billions to go find it — that’s the way to do it, is innovation. So it’s win-win, rather than more cronyism, which so far, all it does is enrich a few people and hurt the average and particularly the poor.

While we’re at it, we should note that the Koch Nitrogen Co. plant near Enid, Okla., has also been highlighted as a leader in carbon capture and sequestration. Carbon dioxide from the process of making nitrogen fertilizer is piped to oilfields nearby, where it is used in enhanced oil recovery and then left buried beneath the ground, according to the Global CCS Institute.

CK: Yeah, I say that a lot of what is done by the climate lobby is anti-science. gas bloating back pain But there is some science behind it. Like, there are greenhouse gases, and they do contribute to warming. But if you look at the last, say, 160 years, the first 80 of that period, they went up four-tenths of a degree. And now, the second 80 that CO2 has gone up, what, 30 percent or something, it’s gone up five-tenths of a degree. And there’s been in the last 30 or 40 years, there’s been no real increase in storms or bad weather. So, let’s use the part that’s real science and then apply the Republic of Science to the rest of it.