Wichita’s Koch Industries has come under attack from an environmental extremist organization for its support of open debate and dialog about the science of climate change.
A report issued by Greenpeace uses inflammatory language and a one-sided view of the facts surrounding climate change in order to attack those it disagrees with. This comes at a time when scientists and the public are becoming increasingly skeptical of the claims of extremist organizations like Greenpeace — and with good reason, too.
Revelations such as the emails from the East Anglia Climate Research Unit, for example, have peeled back the veneer and revealed extremists who have more than the pure pursuit of science as their agenda. This Greenpeace report is another example.
As an example of the way the report presents facts in an attempt to make its case, here is the report’s criticism of one public policy foundation that received Koch funding: “… [it] has hosted Bjorn Lomborg twice in the last two years. Lomborg is a prominent media spokesperson who challenges and attacks policy measures to address climate change.”
To thinking people who value open discussion of issues — rather than wholesale and uncritical acceptance of environmental extremism — providing a forum for Lomborg (author of The Skeptical Environmentalist: Measuring the Real State of the World and Cool It: The Skeptical Environmentalist’s Guide to Global Warming) is a good thing to have done. We need institutions such as Americans for Prosperity, The Cato Institute, and The Heritage Foundation to provide balance to mainstream media that has bought in — emphatically and largely uncritically — to global warming alarmism.
There are those who have broken free from groups like Greenpeace, and the remarks of one give us insight into the true nature of these groups. Patrick Moore, who at one time was President of Greenpeace Foundation in Canada, has said this on the environmental extremists’ need to continually invent disasters: “At the beginning, the environmental movement had reason to say that the end of the world is nigh, but most of the really serious problems have been dealt with. Now it’s almost as though the environmental movement has to invent doom and gloom scenarios.”
Moore shows that he totally understands the harm of radical environmental groups like Greenpeace: “The environmental movement has evolved into the strongest force there is for preventing development in the developing countries. I think it’s legitimate for me to call them anti-human.”
This reveals the true anti-human, anti-progress agenda of environmental extremist groups like Greenpeace. They deny the tremendous progress and benefit to humans that industrialization — propelled by capitalism wherever it is allowed to thrive — has produced. They don’t want to let the debate and discussion proceed.
Koch Industries has provided this response to the Greenpeace report:
In a consistent, principled effort for more than 50 years — long before climate change was a key policy issue — Koch companies and Koch foundations have worked to advance economic freedom and market-based policy solutions to challenges faced by society. These efforts are about creating more opportunity and prosperity for all, as it’s a historical fact that economic freedom best fosters innovation, environmental protection and improved quality of life in a society.
The Greenpeace report mischaracterizes these efforts and distorts the environmental record of our companies. Koch companies have long supported science-based inquiry and dialogue about climate change and proposed responses to it. Koch companies have put tremendous effort into discovering and adopting innovative practices that reduce energy use and emissions in the manufacture and distribution of our products.
We believe the political response to climate issues should be based on sound science. Both a free society and the scientific method require an open and honest airing of all sides, not demonizing and silencing those with whom you disagree. We’ve strived to encourage an intellectually honest debate on the scientific basis for claims of harm from greenhouse gases. We have tried to help bring out the facts of the potential effectiveness and costs of policies proposed to deal with climate, as it’s crucial to understand whether proposed initiatives to reduce greenhouse gases will achieve desired environmental goals and what effects they would likely have on the global economy.