Canadian journalist Donna Laframboise. Former National Post & Toronto Star columnist, past vice president of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. New posts: Mondays & Wednesdays.
Carbon dioxide is not pollution. Our planet would be a wasteland without it.
Fake news is everywhere, and governments can be a rich source. For example, a flyer distributed in the mail last week by Canada’s Revenue Agency – aka the taxman – tells us a pack of lies.
Against the will of elected leaders in four provinces, our federal government has just imposed a carbon tax. The price of gasoline has jumped at the pumps. Home heating costs have risen. This is just stage one, since the tax bite will increase every year.
The flyer begins by declaring:
Pollution has a cost. It impacts the air we breathe, our children’s health, and our economy. That’s why the Government of Canada has put a price on carbon pollution.
What nonsense. Carbon taxes are supposed to discourage people from burning fossil fuels not because of dirty black soot (sophisticated, anti-pollution technologies already exist), but because an invisible, odourless gas gets emitted whenever fossil fuels are used.
The entire climate scare rests on the idea that humanity is adding too much carbon dioxide – CO2 – to the atmosphere, and that this will hypothetically destabilize the climate.
Now is a good time to point out that the Canadian government admits this country is responsible for a mere 1.6 percent of global CO2 emissions. Between them, China (26 percent), America (14 percent), and India (6.4) are responsible for nearly half of all human-produced CO2 (46 percent).
It’s also a good time to remember that, over the past 50 years, experts have predicted one environmental catastrophe after another, none of which materialized. Even smart scientists with powerful computers are terrible at forecasting the future.
As we all learned in Biology 101, bears, bunnies, and humans all exhale CO2 – which is then absorbed by grass, flowers, and trees. Without CO2, there would be no plants. Without plants, there would be no oxygen for wildlife or humanity to breathe.
CO2 is therefore an integral part of the natural, virtuous circle of life. It does no harm to our air quality. It does no harm to our children’s health.
And whatever harm a climate crisis might one day inflict on Canada’s economy must surely be balanced against the genuine hardship being experienced right now.
Every time people near the bottom of the economic ladder fill up their car in order to get to work, they’re being punished. Every time they pay their heating bill they’re being penalized by their own government. That’s what carbon taxes do.
We can argue endlessly about whether more CO2 in the atmosphere will be perilous over the long term. But the ‘pollution’ angle is total hogwash, dreamed up by political sleazeballs.
A planet without CO2 would be a wasteland, bereft of both plants and animals. Calling CO2 pollution is therefore abjectly dishonest.
Let me say this one more time: If CO2 is pollution, every human being is a non-stop pollution factory. Your neighbour’s newborn. Your grandmother. That blind child.
What a sick, dangerous perspective on the world.