Farmers, ranchers and loggers in the Pacific Northwest have spent a lot of time over the last several months wondering how proposed climate change legislation will impact their livelihoods.
In addition to dealing with the impacts of a changing climate, Capital Press readers will have to deal with the impacts of “solutions” under consideration at various levels of government. Higher fuel bills, new fees and more regulations could easily put them out of business and unable to provide for their families.
Climate change is a real pocketbook issue for working families. For the rich and famous, it’s an excuse for a fancy party where they ponder ways other people can save the planet.
Readers with larger worries may have missed the big climate change confab sponsored at a ritzy resort in Sicily by internet giant Google.
Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin began sponsoring an annual retreat to gather exclusive lists of invited guests to discuss big issues.
Held at a $1,000-a-night resort, this year’s “Google Camp” was an opportunity for A-list celebrities and power brokers to discuss solutions to climate change.
Big thinkers and environmental science experts such as singer Katy Perry, actors Orlando Bloom and Leonardo DiCaprio, fashion designer Diane Von Furstenberg and Oprah Winfrey were seen on the island. Former President Obama may have also attended.
Britain’s Prince Harry — officially the Duke of Sussex — attended as Google’s guest and is said to have delivered a speech in which he pledged that he and the duchess would limit their family to just two children. Good news for British taxpayers.
The details of Google Camp are shrouded in secrecy, so we don’t know how many farmers, ranchers or loggers were invited to discuss how any proposed solutions might impact their livelihoods. We suspect there were none.
What is known, because they were hard to miss, is that it took more than 100 private jets and a half dozen yachts to transport the rich and famous to Sicily for the event. The British press estimated that all of this produced a carbon footprint of some 800 tons.
The Daily Mail said it would take the planting of 115 trees to offset the carbon emitted by Harry’s private roundtrip jet ride from London to Palermo. It was not reported that the trees are actually being planted.
What rich people do with their money is usually not of much interest to us. This was a $20 million party designed to make the self-anointed elite feel good about themselves. Had they really been concerned about the planet they would have met by Google hangout.
But we can’t help noting the hypocrisy of discussing what other people can do about climate change while continuing to create an outsized carbon footprint. They will not give up their jets, yachts or palatial estates.
In the world of the environmentally woke celebrity, the sacrifices are to be borne by ordinary people struggling to raise their families by working on the land.