We Should Celebrate Earth Day

Uncork the champagne on Earth Day to celebrate our amazing successes.

We Should Celebrate Earth Day

By: George Noga – April 18, 2021

Thursday is Earth Day which we always observe. Visit our website (www.mllg.us) to read our Earth Day posts from prior years. Since the first Earth Day in 1970, ersatz environmentalists have used the occasion to spread anxiety and to scare the bejesus out of people, especially children. It will be no different this year. In contrast, we present a fact-based and principled analysis of the environment, including climate change.

Michael Shelllenberger, the foremost environmentalist of our age, believes “There is more reason for optimism than pessimism about the environment”, a view we echo. Problems remain (some worrisome), but that shouldn’t detract from the incredible progress humanity has achieved since 1970 and continues to achieve today. Following are some of the amazing environmental gains we should celebrate this Earth Day.

 Population: World population will peak circa 2060 and will be less than today within a century. Then it will continue its plunge to far lower levels and may never again increase as it is nearly impossible to increase fertility with an elderly population. Our biggest concern in the future will be population collapse, not overpopulation.

 Climate Change: Climate alarmists worry about CO2 emissions in 100 years. As noted supra, in 100 years there will be fewer people and in 150 years Earth will be in the throes of a population collapse. If climate change is manmade, then a much smaller population will emit far less carbon than today, thereby totally solving climate change and without the need for humanity to take drastic actions or even to spend money.

 Reforestation: The amount of farmland needed to sustain humanity already has peaked due to GMOs and increased productivity. One billion acres – nearly half the size of the US – will revert to nature by 2060. The global tree canopy has increased by one million square miles (Alaska and Montana combined) in the past 50 years. Global reforestation will remove from the atmosphere 30% of the CO2 from fossil fuels.

 Natural Resources: Since 1980, 45 of 50 commodities studied are less expensive (adjusted for inflation), which means they are more plentiful relative to demand for them. The average price for all 50 commodities fell 35%. Mankind has never run out, or is in any danger of running out, of any non-renewal resource. Remember peak oil?

 Overfishing: Aquaculture is supplying 50% of the fish consumed and is relieving the pressure on overfished wild stocks. Granting property rights to parts of the ocean incentivizes safeguarding fish stocks and avoiding the tragedy of the commons. Such privatizations, as in Iceland and New Zealand, have resulted in increasing fish stocks.

 Rewilding: Currently 15% of the Earth’s land area is protected, such as in national parks; also, 7% of marine areas are protected. As the population collapses in the future, giant swaths of our planet will be rewilded and return to a pristine state.

 Peak Gasoline: We reached peak gas in 2019 prior to the pandemic. Gas usage is declining due to more EVs and Covid-related changes like working from home.

 Other Metrics: Nearly every metric of environmental well-being is the best it has been in 50-100 years and is getting better; these include: ambient air quality, streams suitable for swimming and fishing, oil spills, wastewater treatment and timber growth. There is one environmental problem getting worse, i.e. ocean plastics pollution.

Martin Luther King did not give an “I have a nightmare” speech.

In the runup to Earth Day the media won’t report any of the astounding environmental successes described supra. All you will hear are environmental nightmares. You don’t make the world better by ignoring real progress, dwelling (often counterfactually) on how terrible things might become and scaring our children to death. As Shelllenberger notes, Martin Luther King did not give a “I have a nightmare” speech.

Earth Day 2021 provides an occasion to celebrate mankind’s many environmental successes, while not ignoring legitimate remaining problems. Readers should do two things. First, forward this post to your children and grandchildren who may be petrified by what they hear and see. Second, uncork a bottle of champagne and celebrate!

Next week we touch on several topics – beginning with your breakfast.

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More Liberty Less Government – mllg@cfl.rr.com – www.mllg.us

50th Anniversary of Earth Day – It’s Getting Better All the Time


Why must every Earth Day be about environmental gloom, doom and apocalypse?


50th Anniversary of Earth Day

It’s Getting Better All the Time

By: George Noga – April 26, 2020


          This is the fifth and final post in our series marking the 50th anniversary of Earth Day; the prior four posts are easily viewable on our website at www.mllg.us. This post celebrates the astounding environmental successes of the past 50 years. We conclude by outlining five environmental principles for the next 50 years of Earth Days.

         In all the years I have been blogging, I cannot recall seeing even one prediction by environmentalists that was upbeat; everything is gloom, doom and apocalypse. The earth is overpopulated; mass starvation is inevitable; air pollution will poison the air; we are headed for an ice age followed by global warming; we will run out of natural gas, oil and most minerals; there will be mass extinctions of animals; ad infinitum.

        What actually transpired the past 50 years has been the opposite; virtually every measure of human and environmental wellbeing is the best it ever has been and is getting better all the time! Earth’s population has doubled since 1970, but food is more plentiful and is produced with a smaller environmental footprint. Malnutrition is at its lowest level in history. Obesity has replaced starvation as a major concern. Billions of people have been lifted out of poverty and extreme poverty is nearly eradicated.

       Natural resources are more plentiful, their prices are falling and there is a veritable glut of oil and natural gas. Other key metrics that are doing great include: deaths from extreme weather, ambient air and water quality, life expectancy, emissions per unit of GDP, waterways suitable for swimming and fishing, oil spills, wastewater treatment, energy use per unit of GDP, auto fuel economy and timber growth and utilization.

     This amazing human and environmental progress is well documented in recent publications: It’s Better than it LooksIt’s Getting Better All the TimeThe Moral Arc, Enlightenment NowProgressAbundance and Rational Optimist. To understand the vapidity of the environmental movement, I recommend you read Green Tyranny by Rupert Darwell and Science Left Behind by Berszow and Campbell.

Earth Day: The Next 50 Years

        To achieve optimum, human and environmental progress for the next half century, we outline five fundamental principles that must be scrupulously followed.

1. Capitalism: The only path to a better environment is through free market capitalism. Nations must be affluent to lavish money on the environment. Incredulously, leaders of the green movement all advocate collectivist principles which brought about the worst environmental disaster in human history – the former USSR and its satellites.

2. Nuclear Energy: Nuclear represents the best solution to achieve a clean environment while also combating climate change. Until environmentalists embrace nuclear, you will know they are unserious. More people died at Chappaquiddick than at Three Mile Island and Fukushima (from radiation) combined.

3. Cost/Benefit Analysis: There must be a rigorous and rational economic calculus. We cannot spend humongous amounts of money for putative, infinitesimal and uncertain benefits in the distant future while ignoring the present needs of humanity.

4. Human Wellbeing: While people may need to make sacrifices for the environment, they must not be left entirely out of the equation. Human wellbeing must be considered in situations where the benefit to the environment is uncertain or minimal, while the cost and suffering to people is immediate, apparent and massive.

5. Science Not Religion: Policies must be based on empiricism and science and not on religion. As demonstrated in our post of April 12th, environmentalism is a religion replete with its own gods, dogma, angels, demons, Eucharist and sacraments.

           You will know environmentalism has become mainstream when Earth Day is no longer about only environmental apocalypse and when environmentalist leaders are not afraid to recognize and to celebrate the successes that have been achieved. Maybe there even will come a time when they can acknowledge that human and environmental wellbeing is the best it ever has been and it is getting better all the time!

Next on May 3rd, we blog about Modern Monetary Theory or MMT.
More Liberty Less Government  –  mllg@mllg.us  –  www.mllg.us

50th Anniversary of Earth Day – The Environmentalist Playbook

The ersatz existential environmental crisis that led to the original Earth Day


50th Anniversary of Earth Day

The Environmentalist Playbook

By: George Noga – April 19, 2020

        The incredible, but 100% true, story described in this post is about the advent of the environmental movement and how it led to the first Earth Day; moreover, it resulted in a playbook environmentalists have used over and over ever since that time. This is the fourth in our series on the 50th anniversary of Earth Day; the previous parts are on our website: www.mllg.us. The final part is next week.


        In the mid 1960s an existential environmental crisis threatened Earth; lakes, rivers and forests were dying. Scientists were certain they identified the cause and that it was man-made. Nascent environmentalists became alarmed and organized for action. Politicians quickly fell into line. International conferences, including at the United Nations, were convened and a war on coal (the putative cause) was declared.

       Public alarm was intense; in Sweden and Germany hysteria reached fever pitch. The media outdid themselves with hyperbole, sensationally asserting that the planet was dying. The National Academy of Sciences and the EPA said that the evidence of its cause was overwhelming. The President of the United States formed a blue-ribbon scientific working group to study the problem. International protocols were signed. When the next US president expressed skepticism, 3,000 scientists protested. Cap and trade legislation was pending in Congress. Then came a huge bombshell!

Every environmental scare since 1970 followed the same playbook.

       The blue-ribbon scientific working group (National Acid Precipitation Assessment Program or NAPAP) found that the science was mostly wrong. The principal cause of the problem was changes in land use which resulted in calcium depletion in the soil which, in turn, vastly reduced the acidity of forest floors. The emissions from burning coal in power plants was not the principal cause. Based on the NAPAP report, the problem was rectified and the planet saved. To this day, the EPA never has admitted it was wrong and it still clings to the discredited zombie science of coal emissions.

       As you undoubtedly have discerned by now, the preceding story was about acid rain. Although coal emissions as a principal cause of acid rain has been debunked, it provided a dress rehearsal and a template that environmentalists would use over and over again. They used it for global cooling and the coming of the new ice age in the 1970s. This was followed by global warming in the 1980s which morphed into today’s climate change. But it all began with the environmentalists’ acid rain dry run.

The Environmentalist Playbook

        Every environmental scare since the 1960s has used the same playbook. First, an existential threat to the planet is conjured. Scientists, funded by government, study the problem and claim to be absolutely certain they identified the cause; anyone who disagrees is branded a denier or even a heretic. International organizations jump onto the bandwagon and issue politically motivated studies and protocols. The media then glom onto the crisis and sensationalize it with apocalyptic headlines.

     The public, especially impressionable school children, panics. Politicians, not wanting to allow any crisis go to waste, use it as a pretext to demand more power and money and to further their other not-so-hidden agendas. And, of course, so-called environmentalists never will admit of having doubt or entertain the notion that they might be wrong and if proven wrong they continue to deny the facts.

      There is one other common feature of the environmentalist playbook: they are proven wrong. They were wrong about the cause of acid rain. They were spectacularly wrong about global cooling and the coming of a new ice age. The final story is not yet written about climate change but, at a minimum, the environmentalists have grossly exaggerated the significance of the anthropogenic component.

        On this golden anniversary of the environmental movement, take a few moments to reflect on the playbook environmental alarmists first learned with acid rain and have used for the last 50 years. Now that you understand their game plan, you shouldn’t be vulnerable to manipulation by pseudo environmentalists peddling junk science.

Next on April 26th, we present our plan for the environment for the next 50 years.  
More Liberty Less Government  –  mllg@mllg.us  –  www.mllg.us

Half Century of Earth Day: 1970 to 2020

Watermelon environmentalists are green on the outside but red on the inside. 


Half Century of Earth Day: 1970 to 2020

By: George Noga – March 29, 2020

          We observe the golden anniversary of Earth Day on April 22, 2020 with a month-long series about the environment. Today’s post, the first in the series, articulates our beliefs about the environment. The remaining posts in this series are:

Predictions made on the original Earth Day (April 5)

The environmental religion (April 12)

The environmentalist playbook (April 19)

It’s getting better all the time (April 26)

MLLG Statement of Beliefs About the Environment

In 1970 the environmental movement, like other seismic movements of our era, began in response to legitimate concerns. People of good will joined together to raise consciousness and to enact laws. They achieved great success as most problems were solved or vastly improved. Nonetheless, some serious problems, such as ocean plastics pollution, remain albeit caused by China, India and third-world countries. Most people, believing their mission accomplished, moved on. At that point, hard core leftists hijacked the environmental movement as a lever to achieve their other goals.


Today the environmental movement is led by watermelon (green on the outside but red on the inside) poseurs. They are supported by the usual gaggle of useful idiots: college professors, big government acolytes, movie stars, religious leaders, teachers, media elites and progressives. Unfortunately, they also have captured the hearts and minds of many of our children and grandchildren. Moreover, it isn’t just our children; too many of us still are beguiled by green Svengalis peddling fairy tales.

Hard core leftists have hijacked the environmental movement.

MLLG doesn’t take a back seat to anyone about protecting the environment. We support laws and regulations for clean air, water and energy. We favor biodiversity, sustainability, saving rainforests and right on down the line. There are three differences between MLLG and those who claim (usurp) the mantle of environmentalism.


First – we are for free market capitalism, free trade and limited government. For any nation to spend serious money improving the environment, it must be wealthy. The path to wealth lies only through capitalism. The worst environmental disaster in history was the former Soviet Union and its satellites. Clueless former commies, just like those who created environmental Armageddon, are now leading the green movement.


Second – our beliefs are based on empiricism and science – not on dogma. Green extremists clamor for ever more costly laws to achieve ever more infinitesimal putative benefits. Many greens have turned into environmental terrorists – opposing any and all infrastructure projects. They oppose relatively safe pipelines even if it results in oil moving by rail, which poses far greater environmental risks. Their dogma opposes nuclear energy although it is an environmentally friendly source of energy.


Third – when human wellbeing is at stake, we support rational trade offs. For example, we would allocate water to farmers in the San Joaquin Valley instead of to the delta smelt. Our calculus favors humans whenever the benefit to the environment is uncertain or minimal and the cost and suffering to humans is prodigious.


We are staunch environmentalists whose ideas will do more to help both people and the environment than those of green extremists. Our beliefs are based on capitalism, science, cost-benefit analysis and human values; their beliefs are based on socialism, dogma, unlimited spending and are antithetical to human values.

Next on April 5th, we examine predictions made on the very first Earth Day.
More Liberty Less Government  –  mllg@mllg.us  –  www.mllg.us

Original Earth Day Predictions Revisited


Predictions by environmentalists during the first Earth Day in 1970 were not only wrong, they were absurd, inane, preposterous, idiotic and harebrained but, most of all, laughable.
Original Earth Day Predictions Revisited
By: George Noga – May 14, 2017
     The 47th anniversary of Earth Day is a good time to review the accuracy of predictions made by leading environmentalists in 1970. We also take this occasion to proffer five of our own prognostications. We have not cherry-picked the most absurd predictions; there were no upbeat predictions made by any environmentalists on the original Earth Day – or on any Earth Day since. Source note: Acknowledgement is due to the American Enterprise Institute and Mark Perry for some of the data herein.
  1. Harvard biologist George Wald: “Civilization will end within 15 or 20 years unless immediate action is taken against problems facing mankind.
  2. Paul Erlich: “Population will inevitably and completely outstrip whatever small increases in food supply we make. Between 1980 and 1989, 4 billion people, including 65 million Americans, will perish in the great die-off.
  3. Denis Hayes, the principal organizer for the original Earth Day, wrote in 1970: “It already is too late to avoid mass starvation.” 
  4. Life Magazine reported: “Scientists have evidence to support that within a decade, urban dwellers will have to wear gas masks to survive air pollution. By 1985 air pollution will have reduced sunlight reaching Earth by one half.
  5. Ecologist Kenneth Watt: “By the year 2000 if present trends continue, we will use crude oil at such a rate there won’t be any more crude oil.”
  6. Harrison Brown, a scientist at the National Academy of Sciences, writing in Scientific American stated that humanity would totally run out of copper soon after 2000 and that lead, zinc, tin, gold and silver would be gone before 1990.
  7. Dr. Dillon Ripley, Secretary of the Smithsonian Institute: “In 25 years somewhere between 75% and 80% of all species of living animals will be extinct.”
  8. Ecologist Kenneth Watt once again: “The world has been chilling sharply for about 20 years. If present trends continue, the world will be 11 degrees cooler in 2000.”
  9. Biologist Barry Commoner in the scholarly journal Environment: “We are in an environmental crisis threatening the world as a suitable place of human habitation.”
  10. New York Times editorial: “Man must stop pollution and conserve his resources, not merely to enhance existence but to save the race from possible extinction.
     Res ipsa loquitur pro se, i.e. the reality speaks for itself; I can’t make this stuff up. As often noted in this space, every single one of the top 100 metrics of human and environmental well-being is better today than in 1970 and is continuing to get better all the time. Environmental wackos never learn; the predictions they are making today are every bit as absurd as those they made on the first Earth Day 47 years ago.
     Not to be outdone, MLLG proffers five surefire environmental predictions.
  1. All the top 100 measures of human and environmental well-being will improve.
  2. Prices (net of inflation) will continue to fall for all metals and natural resources.
  3. The decade of the 2020s will experience global cooling.
  4. Billions of additional well-fed humans will inhabit the planet and everyone will live longer and healthier lives. Earth will continue to get ever more cleaner and richer.
  5. Apocalyptic prophets of environmental doom will continue to spout spectacularly wrong predictions – all of which will be dutifully reported and hyped by the media.
     WARNING: The only skunk at this garden party is government – which really could destroy life on Earth. Our fears and those of our children are misplaced. It is big and feckless government that truly threatens this planet, not pollution or climate change.

The next post May 21st is about the end of America’s 25 year long party.