By Vijay Jayaraj – BarbWire guest contributor
The Olympic Games give the world the opportunity to unite around a common event, and a common spirit of determination and excellence. Unfortunately, the stage at Rio this year was not used to unite us, it was used to deceive the world about the facts of climate change.
For the athletes, the Olympics is a stage to showcase their talents at the highest level while representing their country. The Olympics provide an opportunity for countries to put aside differences, and often brings together athletes from nations that harbor enmity towards one another.
Unfortunately this opportunity to show the world the power of sports to bridge political, ethnic, and religious divides, or to focus on the development of an impoverished Brazil, was overshadowed by the bizarre decision to promote climate change alarmism at the Opening Ceremony of the Rio Olympics.
Climate change took center stage despite the presence of more imminent threats to the livelihood of the people who were inside the stadium—Zika, poverty levels, and the water pollution in Rio—which were conveniently sidelined.
Fernando Meirelles, the creative director of the opening ceremony, said “I think this is the core of our ceremony. We’re going to show here how climate change is affecting all of us. And how all the world is at risk because of climate change.”
Mr. Meirelles and the organizers of the Rio Olympics failed to realize that the core of the Olympics is sports—a time when politics is supposed to be put aside for the celebration of human achievement—not a time to push a political agenda.
It makes it even worse that the agenda they chose to push has little basis in scientific fact.
But a more important question is why the people in India, Brazil, and other developing countries should reduce the carbon footprint of their everyday life when such an extravagant event like the Olympics with a much higher footprint was celebrated?
Mr. Meirelles is partially correct, the climate change agenda is affecting all of us—the climate-dictators use the less understood and unsettled science of climate change to deprive the masses from their pursuit of legitimate happiness through overcoming poverty. And the only way to overcome poverty is through abundant, affordable, reliable energy, which, for now, means fossil fuels.
Policies opposing the use of coal and other high yield fuels, and supporting the use of low yield options like wind and solar, hurt developing countries and those in poverty the most.
However, while the impact is most visible for people in poverty, those policies damage everyone through high electricity and fuel costs, and jobs lost.
Not only is the opening theme on climate-action—reducing carbon dioxide emissions by stalling the use of fossil fuels—scientifically deplorable and based on faulty climate computer models, it is blatantly hypocritical.
There is a high likelihood that the carbon footprint from the use of private jets, commercial jets, and luxury SUV’s (not to forget the services utilized by the visitors, the construction of facilities, and the electricity use at the opening ceremony itself) could have far outweighed the entire carbon footprint of several small nations combined together.
This opening ceremony about dangerous man-made global warming was based on factually inaccurate perceptions regarding the state of global climate. No wonder it earned the distinction of being the least viewed Olympic event since the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta.
The opening ceremony was nothing more than a continuation of the effort by the alarmist elite within the global governing bodies to propel mass hysteria surrounding the science of climate change.
While many developing countries will win gold at Rio, their economies can attain gold only through energy policies based on sound science and the use of the fossil fuel resources that helped the West come out of poverty in the 20th century.
Vijay Jayaraj (M.S., Environmental Science, University of East Anglia, England), Research Associate for Developing Countries for the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation, lives in Udumalpet, India.
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.