Reformed climate activist condemns ‘terrorising school children’ with false science
Former climate activist Michael Shellenberger has condemned alarmists for “terrorising school children” with false claims that the world is about to end.
The life-long environmentalist has given Sky News host Chris Kenny a lengthy interview about his decision to speak out against the alarmist rhetoric which he says is creating anxiety in young people.
“I have a 14-year-old daughter and she is fine because I’ve explained the science to her (but) her friends are very alarmed,” he said.
“Adolescents these days have a lot to worry about, anxiety and depression are rising among everyone really, certainly adolescents, and I thought it was not right to be terrorising school children and giving them false information.”
Shellenberger - who has been invited to be an expert reviewer to the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change - maintains that climate change is occurring but says it is not a “catastrophic threat”.
He says the science has been hijacked by a “handful” of activist scientists who are spreading “science fiction”.
“The majority of scientists are not activists, there are actually only a handful of scientists who feel the need to terrify people,” he said.
“I don’t think this is really that complicated, we need to lift everybody out of poverty, and we need to do our best to preserve natural places and things have just spiralled out of control.
“This climate change thing has just got too crazy.”
Shellenberger said he had noticed a “dark tradition” of anti-human rhetoric spilling from climate change activists, including views that humans were a “cancer” or a virus.
In the second half of the interview – which will air on Sky News Australia on the Kenny Report at 5pm on Thursday night – Shellenberger also weighs into whether climate change was a significant cause of the Australian bushfires.
“Yes there is evidence of that,” he said.
“However, It is massively outweighed by two factors; the accumulation of wood fuel in the forests and the development of new houses near forests.
“Is there some contributing role of climate change? Yes. Is it very significant? No”.'Climate Change Is Real, But It's Not the End of the World:' Michael Shellenberger
If there's one consistent message coming from activists and politicians pushing the Green New Deal and massive new subsidies for renewable energy it's that if we don't take radical action now, life on Earth as we know it will soon be irreversibly destroyed. Greta Thunberg, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D–N.Y.), and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden all have claimed that we have less than a dozen years left in which to save the planet.
The findings of the scientists studying global warming don't support such alarmist claims, according to the new book Apocalypse Never: Why Environmental Alarmism Hurts Us All. Author Michael Shellenberger argues that deforestation and deaths from extreme weather are actually declining, and concerns about environmental damage from plastics are fundamentally misplaced.
Shellenberger, who began his career as an advocate for more government spending on wind and solar, was eventually disillusioned after witnessing the failure of subsidies to fix the inherent drawbacks of renewables. Named a "Hero of the Environment" by Time magazine in 2008, he is an "expert reviewer" for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, whose 2018 report has been widely misinterpreted as saying we had just 12 years to stave off catastrophic climate change. Shellenberger also appeared in the 2013 documentary Pandora's Promise, which was shown at Sundance, and featured several prominent environmentalists who have come around to the virtues of nuclear power.
Nick Gillespie interviewed Shellenberger over Zoom about Apocalypse Never and why he believes that environmentalism has become a replacement for religion in an increasingly secular world.