I’ve been trying to think which politician on earth I would rather have less in a cabinet post in the current Coalition than Chris Huhne. And with the possible exception of Hugo Chavez, Kim Jong Il or Salma “Mrs Duckham” Yaqoob, I really can’t think of any.
Here he is this morning on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme talking from Luxembourg where he is at a summit of European Environment Ministers. Apparently blithely unaware how hard up we all are and how we’re on the brink of a double dip recession, multi-millionaire Chris “Seven houses” Huhne is demanding that the EU jeopardises its recovery still further by hampering business and consumers with even stiffer carbon emissions reductions targets.
Where before the EU was committed to 20 per cent CO2 reductions within ten years, Huhne now wants it increased to 30 per cent. According to the EU’s calculations this will only cost another 11 billion Euros extra: 11 billion Euros being, of course, a mere bagatelle to a man as loaded as Chris Huhne.
But why spend all this money in the first place? Because, according to Huhne, if the CO2 reduction figure stays at 20 per cent, it
Makes it all the more risky that we will not be able to keep global temperatures below the two degree limit which scientists reckon to be the real danger point at which we tip into potentially disastrous weather events.
Every word of that statement is the most fantastical bilge and the fact that Huhne was capable of uttering it in a clear, confident voice shows just what a dangerously ill-informed zealot the man is.
The “two degree limit” is an entirely arbitrary figure devised by EU bureaucrats. If global temperatures were to rise by twice that amount, the benefits would far outweigh the downsides in terms of improved crop growth, lower morbidity due to milder winters, increased rainfall, and so on.
Extreme weather events do NOT increase with global temperature rises.
The precise relationship between CO2 and global temperatures is still ill-understood by scientists. They don’t even know how much of the increased CO2 in the atmosphere is anthropogenic and how much has been released from the oceans as a result of warming periods many hundreds of years ago.
The idea that “scientists” – whoever “scientists” are – believe that whether the EU can cut its plant food (aka CO2) production by 20 per cent or 30 per cent will make the blindest bit of difference to “climate change” is absurd beyond measure.
Chris Huhne is a man so dangerous and wrong in every way, and his presence in the Cabinet so stinging an indictment of Dave Cameron’s judgement and of the shoddiness of his compromise with the slimy Liberal Democrats that it almost makes one yearn for the happy, enlightened governance of Ed Balls, John Prescott and Stephen Byers. In fact I do: come back New Labour, all will be forgiven, just so long as you promise to cast the dreadful Huhne into outer darkness. (Oh, and Vince Cable, please).