By John Klar
A recent Vermont legislative initiative purports to save the planet by “conserving” 50 percent of all Vermont territory for wildlife by 2050.
In addition to the economic and constitutional problems this poses, this effort holds up for public display the foolish power-mongering implicit in all these highbrow, counterproductive “climate salvation” fantasies.
Vermont’s House has passed H.606, cited as the “Community Resilience and Biodiversity Protection Act” or “CRBPA,” which defines “conserved” as “meeting the definition of ecological reserve area, biodiversity conservation area, or natural resource management area as defined in this section.” H.606 sets out the plan: “Thirty percent of Vermont’s total land area shall be conserved by 2030, and 50 percent of the State’s total land area shall be conserved by 2050.”
This effort is totally disconnected from helping the ecosystem, though it dramatically expands elitist ideological tyranny — this is the common theme when bureaucrats fantasize they can solve problems they don’t even understand, with more bureaucracy and power appropriated to themselves. The common theme in all of these efforts is that they eliminate private property rights while transferring wealth from poor people to wealthy elites, and are environmentally counterproductive.
Environmental writer Wendell Berry opines wryly that “People are fed by the food industry, which pays no attention to health, and are treated by the health industry, which pays no attention to food.” A parallel is that people in Vermont are subjugated by an elitist bureaucrat industry, which pays no attention to either human health, food, or the ecosystem — all of these are mere pretenses to advance counterproductive ideological delusions. Much like overt government racism is touted as the “final solution” to subconscious racism, now total government/corporate domination of land is embraced to “save Vermonters from themselves.”
Vermont’s most effective and efficient contribution to conserving biological diversity and maintaining a landscape resilient to climate change is to conserve an intact and connected landscape. In order to conserve ecological functions in intact and connected ecosystems, the full range of conservation approaches is needed, including supporting private landowner education, technical assistance, and programs, conservation easements that promote sustainable forest management, and conservation easements and fee acquisitions focused on passive management.
Government programs will save humanity, yet nowhere in the “full range” of conservation is land stewardship by human hands. Nothing could be more alien from wildness — or proper land use — than government committees. Wendell Berry has spent his life explaining that land is not “conserved” by setting it aside as “wild”; it is conserved best when it is stewarded by those with land wisdom:
Good farmers, who take seriously their duties as stewards of Creation and of their land’s inheritors, contribute to the welfare of society in more ways than society usually acknowledges, or even knows. These farmers produce valuable goods, of course; but they also conserve soil, they conserve water, they conserve wildlife, they conserve open space, they conserve scenery.
Vermont has good farmers, who have been for a century overrun by bad legislators and arrogant bureaucrats. The idiots’ moronic “plan” to make 50% of all Vermont lands “wild places” (while “sequestering carbon” to sell pollution indulgences to corporations worldwide) will be overseen by revolving technocrats ignorant of sustainable land use. The Vermont Legislature does not distinguish between types of energy use any better than it does types of land management or types of government power — it uses tyranny to impose nonsense against the very people who could effect positive change.
The Vermont wild places management plan ignores farming completely. But it also ignores ski slopes packed with artificial snow manufactured burning fossil fuels to pump water from shrinking Vermont streams. Will the vast areas of wilderness used for elitist ski resorts be the first to be stewarded, or will it be farmland that is withdrawn for “public use”? Will the Legislature that imposed horribly regressive financial burdens on low-income Vermonters to subsidize grossly inefficient solar panels now demand that vast fields of green be used to erect more Chinese-manufactured, environment-destroying panels, to enhance corporate profits and government power at the expense of land use, economic viability, and environmental degradation? Darn tootin’ they will — there are only a few years to go before Greta Thunberg arrives for End Times inspection!
The disastrous failure of this Kool-Aid fantasy is guaranteed. Food inflation will skyrocket due to escalating fossil fuel costs, and fertilizers and transportation prices will compound, especially in industrial meat production. Instead of shielding land from development under the delusion that this will help the ecosystem, perhaps wise voices will heed Wendell Berry’s legacy, and call for accountability from the Marie Antoinettes who presume that they can just let the environment eat cake.
John Klar is an attorney and farmer residing in Brookfield. This commentary originally appeared at American Thinker.
8 thoughts on “John Klar: Vermont leads the way off the climate bureaucracy cliff”
In 5th grade, we learned that people / animals use oxygen and give off carbon dioxide.
In balance, plants / trees use carbon dioxide and give off oxygen.
The cycle of LIFE!
Since so much rides on the so-called climate emergency, it seems it’d be a good idea to stress test the theory of CO2 warming to ensure that we’re right about the impact of CO2 on the climate. But instead of this, we get “there’s no debate” when in fact there’s an abundance of debate over the role of CO2. We’re literally proceeding with our CO2 mitigation plans through a policy of ignorance: we’re ignoring the very real debate, and media like the NY Times and NPR endorse and encourage this ignorance. But there’s a good reason these folks want to avoid stress testing their theory, as the American Physical Society’s stress test back in 2013 found (see Koonin’s book, “Unsettled.”)
As said below, the core problem is a lack of critical thinking and critical examination and a reliance on groupthink instead. So much of climate science rests not on hard evidence but on assumption and speculation, and a confusion of causality.
A core principle of the Great Reset visionaries is that this reset is required to save the planet. Imagine that: a science based on speculation and assumption used to usher in a new political order and backed by an army of those convinced they have to save the planet. It almost makes one suspect that the climate emergency was designed for the Great Reset, and not the other way around.
Despite preaching the opposite, this legislature is working towards eliminating affordable housing in Vermont, either intentionally or as an unintended consequence. This could go a long way towards that consequence. Under this bill, the scarcity and cost of land that can be developed would make it available only to the wealthy elites, accelerating the exodus of working Vermonters, either those land owners cashing out or renters hitting the wall and leaving. This will increase the importation of more rich, elite progressives.
Right now, the bill only sets goals. However, it imposes a lot of costs on governmental agencies for studies, etc. which will be paid for by Vermonters. In the end it could just be “Oh well we missed those goals”. However, given the history of the GWSA, Act 250, increasingly restrictive development laws and Montpelier-pushed local zoning laws over the past 50 years, it won’t stop there. Today, there are very few private property rights left in this state.
Who will decide (mandate) which properties will be conserved? If recent trends continue, it will be an unaccountable board or commission.
Unless your senators stop this.
This is step one in outlawing heating with wood. They have been looking for a way to do that. Taking control of the forests is the vehicle. Its communism and its time to stat calling them communists.
We all know that unmanaged lands (wilderness areas) are a waste of natural resources. they are trying to outlaw hunting, fishing is next. — And its only a matter of time before they find more things to outlaw.
This fantasy is anchored in the belief that somehow humans are the major cause of species extinction.
Unfortunately that belief in itself is a fantasy. Of all the species that have ever lived, over 95% have been extinguished by natural disasters.
The most common natural disaster is an Ice Age. We are currently living in an inter-glacial period, the Holocene, which started about 5,000 years after the last glacial (10,000 years ago), the Earth is actually greening again due to the increased CO2 released by the oceans and some slight human causes. For the last 5000 years or so, the Earth has been mostly cooling, with the occasional warm period about every 1000 years or so. With the peak of each warm period a little cooler than the last.
The point of all this is to point out climate is NOT weather. The species extinction rates are based on models which have been fed inputs based on other models. None of these models have been validated or tested. The results are just WAGs and completely inappropriate for policy decisions.
The idea of “fighting” climate change or species extinction is an impossible Quixotic attempt at mitigation.
Adaptation is the only answer. Just ask Mother Nature.
Thank you yirgach, nicely stated. We would not be in this position if our middle and high schools were actually teaching Earth Sciences that would easily dispel the lunacy of an impending climate crisis by showing that the earth’s climate has been going through radical fluctuations for hundreds of millions of years, without the assistance of humans, or dinosaurs. Real Earth Science courses are fun, informative and lay waste to all the stupidity of the climate crisis warriors, which includes most of the Vermont legislature…
Mark you’re correct, however it is extremely hard to teach any real Science without Critical Thinking as well. You can’t have one without the other. But Critical Thinking opens the door for Original Thought which cannot be allowed.
Nowadays it is too easy to squash and suppress rather than to tolerate and encourage.
Daddy and Mommy, flatlander Johnny come lately libs escaping urban nightmares they helped to create, want to recreate that nightmare here in Vermont.
This bill tanks the future of every Vermonter but those voting this bill in.
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