The weather may be cooling, but the rhetoric surrounding climate change continues heating up. In June Canada’s House of Commons passed a motion declaring a National Climate Emergency. This week CNN hosted a seven-hour marathon wherein ten Democratic Presidential contenders spoke on the “climate crisis,” to use the media’s latest catchphrase. While the issue is regarded exclusively as a liberal or left-wing cause, Mark Cameron argues that conservatives need to live up to the conservationist ethic implied in their name and develop environmental policies that draw on their own traditions.
Reputationally, 2015 is shaping up as a very bad year for fossil fuels. Climate alarmism has reached new heights, President Obama has unveiled an anti-coal initiative of unprecedented scope, and the United Nations global warming bureaucracy is gearing up for another mega-conference this fall. Even Pope Francis, spiritual leader of the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics, has joined the fray. He makes some laudable contributions to the debate in his new encyclical, writes Mark Cameron, but blaming climate change on technology and free markets is not one of them.