ICYMI – Billionaires Ignore Their Own Carbon Emissions While Decrying Withdrawal From Paris Accord

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Elon Musk’s Private Jet

After President Trump pulled the United States out of the Paris Accord on “Climate Change”, billionaires Michael Bloomberg and Elon Musk were quick to decry the move.  Bloomberg went on a tweetstorm about climate change, and Elon Musk also used Twitter to make a very public departure from the “presidential councils” he sat on to advise Trump:

Conveniently, Bloomberg and Musk both made sure to omit their own contributions to carbon emissions via private travel.  Ted Cruz was quick to take apart Musk for his hypocrisy:

And Breitbart more than adequately took apart the hypocrisy in Musk’s request for carbon taxes:

Musk has come under fire previously for his liberal use of his private jet, which he upgraded last year from a Dassault Falcon 900 B to a Gulfstream G650 ER. It was reported in 2010 that Musk took private jets to Washington on at least 12 occasions over the course of two years to lobby the Department of Energy for a loan of $465 million, which Musk’s company Tesla was eventually granted.

Around the same time, Tesla also struck deals with the California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority that made the company exempt from up to $320 million in California State sales and U.S. taxes.

Don’t you worry; climate change is real, but according to Musk, it’s not real enough to stop him from putting over 37 times as much carbon into the atmosphere as the average passenger on a commercial jet.  Take note, he did this on his way to ask for tax exemptions and government loans for his companies, and now he wants the American taxpayer to foot the bill for his excessive emissions.

Oh, you think the “37 times the emissions” quote isn’t accurate?  It is far worse if you calculate it by other metrics, as the New York Times did with Michael Bloomberg’s private travel:

Mr. Bloomberg owns a helicopter and two jets, both Falcon 900s. He flies everywhere on private jets, by far the least efficient form of transportation on or above the earth. He takes his jet to Bermuda many weekends. He has flown around the globe on it. He uses it to go to Washington. He is planning to get to Copenhagen for the climate conference by private jet, too.

The carbon math works out like this: by taking his Falcon 900 to Denmark, Mr. Bloomberg will be responsible for the release of 37 times the carbon dioxide than if he and his entourage flew on a scheduled commercial flight. The calculations were done at my request by Dimitri Simos, the developer of software used by the airline industry to assess aircraft emission and performance. Mr. Simos said that a Falcon 900 carrying eight people from Newark to Copenhagen would produce 21.6 tons of carbon dioxide. By adding eight people to the scheduled Scandinavian Airlines flight, the aircraft, usually an Airbus A330-300, would produce an additional 0.58 tons of carbon dioxide.

Mr. Bloomberg’s routine trips to Bermuda are even more carbon costly: the private jet produces 130 times more emissions than going commercial. On those jaunts, Mr. Simos said, the Falcon produces 4.3 tons of carbon dioxide; putting another two people on an American Airlines Boeing 757-200 that flies to Bermuda would produce only 66 more pounds.

It’s really quite amusing, because Bloomberg’s private flight flies in the face of the claims he made in his statement against leaving the Paris Accord:

Billionaire philanthropist and businessman Michael Bloomberg is defying President Trump’s decision to exit the Paris climate change agreement, saying he is rallying a bipartisan coalition of states, cities and business leaders to meet the climate pact’s targets even as the president rescinds the nation’s commitment to it.

“Americans are not walking away from the Paris Climate Agreement,” Bloomberg said on Thursday. “Just the opposite — we are forging ahead. Mayors, governors, and business leaders from both political parties are signing on to to a statement of support that we will submit to the U.N. — and together, we will reach the emission reduction goals the United States made in Paris in 2015.”

Bloomberg’s philanthropic groups, in partnership with others, is also making a $15 million contribution to fund the U.N.’s climate secretariat, which will lose money under Trump. “Americans will honor and fulfill the Paris Agreement by leading from the bottom up — and there isn’t anything Washington can do to stop us,” Bloomberg said.

Yes, Bloomberg will unite liberal cities “together” to reach the emission reduction goals, but he will certainly not be uniting himself personally with the same coalition.  How could he, when one of his private flights emits more carbon into the atmosphere than the majority of citizens will in any given year? 

Obviously, nothing truly says “I don’t really care about carbon emissions” like trotting the globe in a top of the line $65 million jet, while taxing everyone beneath them to the point of financial insolvency.  But this is the exact sort of hypocrisy you should expect from these billionaires who are rallying against the withdrawal from the Paris Accord; its all about the optics to them, because they don’t care enough to actually do something themselves that would make a difference. 

Who knows though; this could just be another case of (willful) ignorance by our beloved billionaire globetrotters. 

Note: The author is in no way against private flight or carbon emissions of any kind, and does not believe CO2 emissions are the end-all, be-all that the “climate change” crowd makes it out to be.  Articles like these are merely calling out the hypocrisy of those who call for carbon taxes while simultaneously doing nothing to reduce their own excessive emissions.  If you are interested in the actions billionaires could (and should) work towards before ever implementing a carbon tax, take a look at the list in this article