Brendan O’Neill, writing in the UK Telegraph makes the valid point that environmentalism is diametrically opposed to the ordinary human desires for wealth, health and happiness, and the rejection by the public at large of climate hysteria and alarmism is worthy of celebration:
But has the public really tuned out from eco matters because it doesn’t understand them, because it is perplexed by “expert discourse”? I don’t think so. I think the reason people are switching off from the enviro-agenda is because they disagree with it. They just don’t buy the idea that capping carbon emissions is the most important thing in the world, more important than growing the economy, increasing wealth, and being free to choose to live in a big house with the heaters permanently switched on and Tesco just a short 4×4 drive away. They see the mean-minded, sacrifice-demanding politics of being green as a challenge to the thing that has motored human communities for millennia – the desire to create a world of plenty, an overflowing “land of milk and honey”, a utopia filled with stuff and comfort – and they don’t like it.
Environmentalism is, by its own admission, a campaign against the public and our historic desire for more things and freedom. George Monbiot has stated this baldly. Environmentalism is “a campaign not for abundance but for austerity”, he says. “It is a campaign not for more freedom but for less… it is a campaign not just against other people, but against ourselves.” And that is precisely how most people experience environmentalism – as an extraordinarily elitist drive to reprimand and possibly even punish the people for daring to want more; as a top-down, hectoring effort to make us acclimatise to austerity and give up on that age-old dream of a “great production that will supply all, and more than all the people can consume” (Sylvia Pankhurst). If environmentalism is a “campaign against people”, then it makes perfect sense that the people bristle at it, even hate it and deny its “truths”. (source)
And just to be clear, this does not mean ‘denying’ the existence of climate change, or the contribution that man has made to it. It is about denying the environmentalists the free rein they desire to dictate the response.