EVERY year the climate jamboree comes around, and we are told that an agreement has been struck which will save the world. And a few months later we are told that we only have x years to save us from climate Armageddon!
COP27 which has just finished in Egypt was no different. The BBC hailed it as a ‘historic deal’, but in reality it achieved very little. Developing nations arrived demanding $1.3trillion a year in climate finance, while richer ones were hoping for promises of emission cuts from the rest of the world. Both sides went home unhappy.
Last year’s Glasgow Agreement stated that ‘countries will meet next year to pledge further major carbon cuts with the aim of reaching the 1.5C goal’. Needless to say, none of this has come to fruition.
The lack of any agreement to cut emissions has horrified greens, with the WWF describing COP27 as a ‘down payment on disaster’.
The promise made last year of more money in climate aid for poor countries has also not materialised. All that COP27 has achieved in this respect is a vague promise to set up a fund for ‘loss and damage’ at some point in the future. No details have been agreed, and none of the sticking points resolved. They will supposedly be sorted out next year (when COP28 will be held in Dubai) but there seems little prospect of anything meaningful being agreed then, as the problems appear intractable:
• Developing nations are not prepared to make emission cuts and sacrifice their economies;
• China and India refuse to pay a penny into the fund, despite their own massive emissions of carbon dioxide;
• Western nations are broke, so any new money handed out is likely to be no more than a token.
Steve Barclay, the Health Secretary, has already given us a clue. Interviewed on Sunday, he said: ‘The UK, through its overseas aid budget, has always supported action in terms of climate change and I’m sure we will continue to do so.’ The climate aid given by the UK Government comes out of its Overseas Aid budget, which is limited to 0.5 per cent of GDP. The same is likely to apply to this new fund, if it ever gets off the ground. In other words, it won’t be new money at all, merely transferred from other aid spending. We must also remember that Jeremy Hunt’s recent Autumn Statement extended the cut in the Overseas Budget to 0.5 per cent until 2027. It is inconceivable that he will reverse that decision.
But it is the US Congress which will effectively kill off this new fund. With the GOP in control of the House, and therefore the purse strings, and determined to rein back excessive Federal spending there is no chance at all that Congress will approve the payment of tens of billions. A particular anathema to the US is the idea of handing money over to a UN body to spend as they want – that is something neither party would support.
Western governments hoped that dangling a few billion would encourage poorer countries to start cutting emissions. But the latter only ever wanted the money.
I have no doubt some fudge will be cobbled together next year to save face, and the can will be kicked down the road again. There will probably be a small fund set up, with some sort of vague promise to increase it by 2030. And the issue of China and others paying their share will be something to be looked in a few years’ time.
I’ll give the final comment to the eminently sensible Jacob Rees-Mogg:
The Baroness and the WEF
WE ARE no doubt all well aware of the activities of Klaus Schwab and the World Economic Forum (WEF), which he founded and still runs. Just in case anybody does not know, here is what Investopedia has to say about the group:
‘The World Economic Forum (WEF) is an international organisation headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, that brings together individuals and political and business leaders each year to discuss significant issues that impact the global economy. These include but are not limited to political, economic, social, and environmental concerns.
‘The membership is a cross-section of the global elite from the private and public sectors and includes some of the most prominent CEOs, diplomats, celebrities, media personalities, government officials, religious leaders, and union representatives from around the world.
‘The WEF is funded by its own membership, which includes industry leaders and individuals from all walks of life. In addition, many celebrities, journalists, and interested individuals are willing to pay steep annual dues and meeting fees to attend.
‘The World Economic Forum has no power to make decisions, but it may have considerable ability to influence political and business policy decisions. The purpose of its annual meeting is to bring the world’s decision-makers together regularly to discuss the pressing problems of the day and consider how best to address them.’
They don’t attempt to disguise the fact that they have a deeply political agenda. Indeed two years ago the WEF launched their Great Reset initiative, when they told us ‘You’ll own nothing and you’ll be happy about it’.
Only last week, Schwab gave a speech at the B20 investment forum in Indonesia, warning us: ‘What we have to confront is the deep, systemic and structural restructuring of our world. And this will take some time. The world will look differently after this transition process.’
Why am I telling you all this?
Let’s turn to the supposedly ‘independent’ Committee on Climate Change (CCC), the body which effectively now determines the UK’s climate policy, which is led by Lord Deben, formerly the Tory MP John Selwyn Gummer.
One of its leading members is Baroness Brown (Professor Dame Julia King). She is chair of the Adaptation Committee, as well as vice-chair of the CCC, of which she has been a member for a number of years.
Given the influential role of the CCC in public policy making, it is worrying to learn that Baroness Brown also happens to be a leading member of the WEF. She is a member of its Global Agenda Council on Decarbonising Energy.
It appears that her close involvement with the WEF goes back some years, as in 2012 she was a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Automotive.
It is one thing for our political leaders to preen themselves at Davos. But it is altogether much more insidious that somebody who is unelected yet has huge influence over public policy is working at the heart of the WEF, the organisation which seeks to change our whole way of life.
In my opinion, Baroness Brown should be immediately removed from the CCC, and stripped of all her other positions of influence.