Recent climate conferences in Stockholm and Cancun have revealed what the global climate change issue is really all about — the transfer of wealth from developed nations to developing countries. Both during the Stockholm and Cancun climate meetings negotiators have wishfully strategized on how the so called “rich nations” can pay the developing economies to pursue expensive alternative energy projects that will invariably slow down their economic progress and deny affordable energy to many households that do not currently even have access to electricity.

The transfer of wealth from rich countries to poor countries is destined to fail because it is based on faulty premises that there are rich countries. Climate negotiators must not have noticed that the world has radically changed in the past couple of decades. Although there are still poor countries, rich countries no longer exist, with the possible exception of a handful of oil-producing nations. The reality is that the developed world is mostly broke with many countries saddled by crushing debt that presents a clear and present danger to their economic survival.

It was a national embarrassment at the Stockholm climate conference when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton promised to give billions of dollars to China, money we would have to borrow from them in the first place, if only they would not build so many of those “dirty” power plants to support their rapidly escalating economy.   

The global climate change crowd, many who consider themselves progressives, are actually stuck in a time warp that does not reflect current world economic reality. If they continue to live in this alternative reality they will continue to develop policy prescriptions that are dead on arrival.