‘Risky Business’ Targets Midwest for Global Warming Alarmism

What was a prolonged hibernation for “Risky Business,” after its brief burst of ballyhoo early last summer, has finally ended. The well-paid consultants and staffers for megarich global warming activist Tom Steyer (pictured in center) are back after his failed financial foray ($74 million) to elect Democrats to the Senate.

After the June 2014 release of its first report, Risky Business: The Economic Risks of Climate Change in the United States, they decided to carve that sucker up by geography. Last week they announced to the world that we first must alert folks in flyover country with the new report, Heat in the Heartland: Climate Change and Economic Risk in the Midwest. It’s clear from their Web site that future regional reports are to come. Steyer’s Risky Business partners Michael Bloomberg and Henry Paulson also threw their names on the Midwest report “findings.”

It contains all the global alarm and climatic catastrophism you’d expect from these “nonpartisan” plutocrats. The Risky Business guys want to make sure you know that they don’t “dictate the solutions” to climate change, while at the same time emphasizing that government and the private sector must “act now” to reduce greenhouse gas emissions – namely, carbon dioxide from burning fossil fuels.

“As a lifelong Midwesterner, I’m gravely concerned that our ‘business as usual’ path is dangerous, unsustainable and threatens our way of life,” Paulson said. “Our business leaders, our cities, and our investment community need to focus on these risks and act now before it’s too late.”

“This new report finds what more and more business leaders are already recognizing: Climate risks are real and too dangerous to ignore,” said Bloomberg.

It must be reiterated, however, that there is no dictating going on here (!) and Risky Business’s projections are fully scientific and on the up-and-up. Just because they hired two firms – the Rhodium Group and Risk Management Solutions – that make their money on forecasts about hazards and consequences (whether there actually are any or not) is irrelevant. According to the Risky Business Web site the Rhodium Group’s expertise is the analysis of “disruptive global trends,” while Risk Management Solutions is the “world’s largest catastrophe-modeling company for insurance, reinsurance, and investment-management companies around the world.”

Also on the forecast team, as lead scientist, was alarmist climate scientist Dr. Robert Kopp of Rutgers University, who believes “we are inducing planetary environmental conditions like those that Earth has not experienced for millions of years.” His fellow climate projectors, identified as his “Expert Review Panel,” consist of a Who’s-Who of among atmospheric fearmongering, including Kerry Emanuel, Katherine Hayhoe, Michael Oppenheimer, and Nicholas Stern. While their bias-influenced climate models continue to show future dire consequences as a result of greenhouse gases, satellite data show no planetary warming for 18 years and three months – or since October 1996.

“The global warming that the IPCC had so confidently but misguidedly predicted 25 years ago has stopped altogether,” wrote the Lord Christopher Monckton.

Nevertheless the Risky Business reporters assert the U.S. climate “is paying the price” for past “business decisions,” allegedly coming in the form of “increased storm damage and more extreme heat….” The Climate Prospectus composed by Kopp and Company contends there are future economic risks “from increased flooding and storm damage, to climate-driven changes in crop yields and labor productivity, to heat-related strains on energy and public health systems.” Even the National Hockey League will not be spared! (Page 36)

Yet trends show no such phenomena. Despite past predictions to the contrary from the alarmists, flooding has not increased, the tornado count has dropped to record low levels for three consecutive years, and the frequency of 90-degree days in the U.S. has fallen. This is in addition to the 18-year pause in warming.

Of course this is all intended to be Midwest-centric, so Risky Business “Project Risk Committee Chairman” Greg Page – who is executive chairman of agribusiness giant Cargill – was also enlisted to try to boost credibility for the report.

“A changing climate will present new risks and new opportunities as we face the complex task of producing enough food, feed and fuel for a world on its way to 9 billion people,” Page said in a press release. “Given the importance of the Midwestern United States to the world’s agricultural production, it would be irresponsible to dismiss these projections lightly.”

Why would Cargill have an interest in pushing policy changes via Risky Business? It might have to do with their huge production (and millions of dollars spent lobbying) of ethanol and biofuels, which thrive primarily thanks to government mandates and subsidies rather than free-market demand.

So this month it’s the Midwest; in another few months it might be the Southeast (perhaps coastal threats), the Pacific Northwest (maybe the fishing industry), or the West (wine country!). Everywhere there will be a “risk” to report for Steyer, Paulson, and Bloomberg, and no one will spared, unless we act now.

Just don’t call it “dictating!”

Paul Chesser is an associate fellow for the National Legal and Policy Center and publishes CarolinaPlottHound.com, an aggregator of North Carolina news.