Paul Krugman begins his latest New York Times op-ed entitled "Hope From Paris" by observing:
"Did the Paris climate accord save civilization? Maybe. That may not sound like a ringing endorsement, but it’s actually the best climate news we’ve had in a very long time. This agreement could still follow the path of the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, which seemed like a big deal but ended up being completely ineffectual. But there have been important changes in the world since then, which may finally have created the preconditions for action on global warming before it’s too late."
A pity that all the presidents, prime ministers, kings and potentates did not arrive in Paris via commercial jets. What a powerful statement concerning global warming and pollution this would have made.
But more to the point, Krugman seems to hint at the fact that it is not a matter of what the nations of the world agree. He is correct. Ultimately, most nations will act in their own selfish interest.
Fortunately, technological advances are indeed bringing clean energy prices steadily down. But beyond a decline in the costs of solar and wind power, lightbulbs today last longer and use less electricity. Automobiles are more fuel efficient, and there is a revolution afoot regarding the way in which people work: Today, many employees are able to work several days each week from their homes, thereby also reducing carbon emissions involving transportation to and from their jobs.
Near the end of his op-ed, Krugman warns:
"President Cruz or President Rubio might scuttle the whole deal, and by the time we get another chance to do something about climate it could be too late."
Sorry, Paul, but saving the climate has nothing to do with Democrats versus Republicans. Rather, it has everything to do with cost efficiency and basic market forces.