Letter: “Climate Cartel” Doesn’t Exist

Mik Muller, Greenfield Recorder. September 19, 2022

Apparently Jim Bates (Recorder, Friday, Sept 16) watches FOX, and may even be a fan of Senator Tom Cotton, Republican of Arkansas. This is what Sen. Cotton said this past July:

“There's no question that climate action is a combination conspiracy, really a climate cartel, that's specifically designed to drive up the price of gasoline for America's consumers.”

Sen. Cotton is accusing those who support a reduction in fossil fuel usage in order to lower carbon emissions as “conspiring” to drive up the price of gasoline, calling them a “climate cartel.”

Well, no.

First of all, the price of gasoline dropped to almost nothing due to the glut of supply during the pandemic (lockdowns = no demand) just as Russia and Saudi Arabia were locked in a supply war that flooded markets. Barrels of oil were worth negative dollars in July of 2020. They literally could not give it away.

Then prices shot way up due to the dearth of supply when the lockdowns ended and we started driving again (sudden high demand). And then Russia invaded Ukraine.

So, that’s why the price of gasoline went way up. Blame COVID and Russia, not some specious climate cartel.

Second, the goal of climate activists is to reduce demand for fossil fuels. As everyone knows, when demand for a product drops, prices drop. If no one wants gas, the prices should drop, right? Supply and demand? Grade school stuff. So, their goal isn't to drive up gas prices. Their goal is to reduce demand for fossil fuels.

Mr. Bates then asserts: “Let's not forget in the U.S., over 80% of electricity is created by fossil fuels.”

That was back in 2019. Two years later in 2021, the EIA reported that about 61% of electricity generated was from fossil fuels. About 19% was from nuclear energy, and about 20% was from renewable energy sources. A clear shift away from fossil fuels. Look it up.

These are market forces reacting to state initiatives and inevitable cheaper generation by renewables, not some bogus climate cartel.

Let me ask you this, Mr. Bates. Don’t you want cleaner air? Did you know that at the beginning of the lock down people could see the peaks of Mount Kenya from the capital, Nairobi, 85 miles away, for the first time in decades. On a typical day you cannot see the mountain at all for all the smog. Same for skyscrapers in Manhattan in the 1970s, or all of Los Angeles during the 1940s and 1950s. That is no longer true due to reductions in carbon emissions.

Unfortunately, the Republic Party is deeply entrenched in the fossil fuel industry, working with oil producers to remove any barriers to selling their dirty product. And when an industry averages $3 Billion a day in profit, there is a lot of cash to spread around. A true “Carbon Cartel.”

Mik Muller lives in Greenfield, and loves fresh air.