The Acid Test of the Moral Seriousness of Global Warming Activists Is Immigration Policy
September 21, 2014, 12:47 PM
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The New York Times is going all out today to push Climate Action against carbon emissions today, with multiple articles in its most prominent newshole:
Marchers carried a giant sunflower during the People’s Climate March in New York on Sunday.CreditDamon Winter/The New York Times


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Steven Greenhouse · @greenhousenyt

This August was the hottest August on record & 2014 could be the hottest year on record. http://t.co/DrDt6HGnGm#climatemarch @thinkprogress


But the ultimate test of the seriousness of global warming activists is whether they campaign against mass immigration.

I wrote in VDARE on August 8, 2010:

The causes of global warning are disputed, but let's assume for the sake of analysis that human output of “greenhouse gases” does indeed cause global warming. It ought to be close to self-evident that immigration to America increases this country's—and the world's—output of those gases.

The logic is very simple: If immigrants from poor countries successfully assimilate to American norms of earning and consuming, they, and their descendents, will emit vastly more carbon than if they stayed home.

According to the UN's International Energy Agency, residents of America in 2007 put out an average of 19.1 tons of carbon dioxide, the chief greenhouse gas, by fossil fuel combustion—e.g., by driving around, by being warm in winter and cool in summer, and by watching TV.

In contrast, the residents of Mexico each emit 4.1 tons per year. In other words, the typical inhabitant of America churns out 4.6 times as much carbon dioxide as the typical inhabitant of Mexico.

So, if an average Mexican immigrates to the U.S. and fully assimilates to average American patterns of earning and spending, he will emit 4.6 times as much carbon dioxide as if he stayed home in his own country. (Even more important are the impact of his descendents…). …Of course, it’s also important to remember that not all immigrants come from

Of course, it's also important to remember that not all immigrants come from Mexico. Many Americans don't realize it, but by Third World standards, Mexicans on average aren't particularly poor. According to the CIA World Factbook, there are no less that 5,366,204,659 people living in countries with lower average per capita incomes than Mexico.

To put it another way, 79% of world lives in countries poorer than Mexico.

(Of course, the Mexican average is a little skewed by the World Richest Man, Carlos Slim, major creditor of the New York Times, and his fellow oligarchs.)

It's commonly implied in the MSM that Mexicans immigrate to the U.S. to avoid seeing their children die of starvation. Yet, life expectancy in Mexico (76.3 years) is now essentially as high (97.5 percent) in the U.S.

No, Mexicans don't immigrate to America to live longer—they immigrate to live larger: to have a large vehicle, a large house, a large TV, and a large family. All of which equate to large carbon emissions.

… In most other immigrant-exporting countries, the carbon emission immigration multiplier is substantially higher than that of Mexico. For instance, if a normal Dominican immigrates to America and successfully assimilates his carbon emissions would increase 9.7 times. For most Central Americans, the Immigration Multiplier is around 20X. For Haitians, it's 79.3X.

… When I’ve brought these inconvenient truths up in discussions,

When I've brought these inconvenient truths up in discussions, on the rare occasions when Save the Worlders respond logically, they sometimes dredge up the response that Mexico will, surely Real Soon Now, emit as much carbon per capita as the U.S.

I don't see much evidence for that in the UN figures. Mexico's per capita carbon emissions were estimated to be 18 percent as high as America's in 1982, and 22 percent as high a quarter of a century later in 2007. At that rate, it would take many generations to close the gap.

Global warming activists haven't found many other objections to sputter. Their thought processes tend to be restricted to Immigration Good! Carbon Bad! Does not compute… These are HateStats!

Moreover, the more you think about the impact of Mexican immigration, the worse it is for carbon emissions. Immigration contributes both directly and indirectly to sprawl. Mexican immigration to cities tends to drive Americans, including blacks and American-born Hispanics, to the exurbs to find decent public school districts—at the cost of long commutes for parents. For example, immigration into Los Angeles, with its mild climate, spawned an enormous housing bubble in the hot Inland Empire, where air conditioning costs are high.

As Joel Kotkin has often pointed out, most immigrants in the 21st Century want to spend as little time in the inner city as possible and instead move directly to a suburb or exurb.

Finally, Mexican immigrants tend to have higher birthrates in America than they would have had if they stayed home. In California in 2005, foreign-born Latinas were having babies at a rate of 3.7 children per lifetime versus about 2.4 for women in Mexico and 1.6 for American-born white women in California.…

When the impact of greenhouse gases on global warming is finally brought to the attention of global warming activists, many scoff at the idea that immigration could have any sizable impact on the U.S. population.

But that is simply ignorance. The Pew Research Center reported in 2008:

“If current trends continue, the population of the United States will rise to 438 million in 2050, from 296 million in 2005, and 82% of the increase will be due to immigrants arriving from 2005 to 2050 and their U.S.-born descendants, according to new projections developed by the Pew Research Center.”[Immigration to Play Lead Role In Future U.S. Growth, by Jeffrey Passel and D'Vera Cohn, February 11, 2008]
So, that's 116 million additional people in America due to immigration from 2005 onward. (Perhaps another 50 or 60 million of that forecasted population of 438 million would be due to immigration from 1965-2004.)

Assuming that these immigrants emit carbon at the American average, the U.S. in 2050 will emit 39 percent more carbon than if an immigration moratorium had been imposed in 2005.

Read the whole thing there.