WHAT?! MIT Tech Magazine Touts Coronavirus Will ‘Cut Greenhouse-Gas Emissions This Year’

March 16th, 2020 1:22 PM

When you see leftist propaganda touting that a contagious disease is reducing carbon emissions published in a top university’s tech magazine, one wonders why we continue to subsidize these institutions with government funds.

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Technology Review, published a climate change piece headlined “Why the coronavirus outbreak is terrible news for climate change.” The piece argued: “It appears increasingly likely that the global coronavirus outbreak will cut greenhouse-gas emissions this year, as deepening public health concerns ground planes and squeeze international trade.”

James Temple, the piece’s author, fretted March 9 that “it would be a mistake to assume that the rapidly spreading virus, which has already killed thousands and forced millions into quarantine, will meaningfully reduce the dangers of climate change.” [Emphasis added.]

So the outlet’s complaint is that the virus isn’t doing enough?

One of the magazine’s primary concerns out of this whole virus debacle is actually that “Rising health and financial fears could also divert public attention from the problem [of climate change].” Yes, really.

The magazine does say that the virus is a bad thing, at least from a climate change perspective. Really? “[I]f the virus leads to a full-blown global pandemic and economic crash, it could easily drain money and political will from climate efforts,” complained Temple.

The piece backtracks by saying that “we absolutely should dedicate the bulk of our international attention and resources to the outbreak at this moment, given the grave and immediate public health dangers.” But then it shifts course again, suggesting that “the fear is that the highly contagious coronavirus could complicate the challenges of climate change—which presents serious, if longer-term, threats of its own.” [Emphasis added.]

Later, the magazine actually listed “countervailing forces” from the virus outbreak that could yield positive outcomes from an environmentalist’s standpoint:

  • “A sustained drop in oil prices could make longer-term investments in clean energy more attractive for major energy players, as a Eurasia Group analyst argued to Axios.”
  • “Some have also suggested that the deadly virus could bring about long-lasting shifts in carbon-intensive behaviors, if people remain fearful of flying and cruise ships, or come to prefer remote working and virtual conferences.”

But then again, the magazine shifted directions: “[I]t’s important to keep in mind, as we game out the long-term consequences of the coronavirus outbreak, that the short-term impacts are clear: many, many people are going to become ill and die. That’s an unequivocally bad thing.

Leave it to radical environmentalists to look for the silver lining in a pandemic for their eco-extremist views.