What Pope Francis should do to really help the poor

Bergoglio pushing his socialist agenda...

Bergoglio pushing his socialist agenda…

Population Control Agenda…

How can we best aid the world’s most vulnerable?

Pope Francis’s concern for the poor is clear, so it is understandable that climate change is the topic of his forthcoming Encyclical — a Papal letter that is sent out to the world. Climate change will hit the most destitute people first and worst.

But the Pope after his letter is officially published, he should tread carefully. The climate policies of today will do little for the poor.

A cruel truth is that almost every significant challenge on Earth hits the poor more than the wealthy: hunger, a lack of clean drinking water, malaria, indoor air pollution. The question then is how we make the most difference for the most vulnerable.

A reasonable starting point is to listen to the world’s citizens. A United Nations survey of 7.5 million people found that many other issues are deemed more urgent. The top priorities were education, health, jobs, corruption and nutrition. Of 16 problems, the climate was rated the lowest priority.

One reason may be that today’s climate policies themselves have a cost, which predominantly hits the poor.

Cuts in electricity consumption require price hikes that hurt the worst-off and elderly. Relying on expensive green energy sources like wind and solar power makes electricity pricier and less available for those who desperately need it.

The biggest problem with today’s climate change policies is that they will cost a fortune for very little good. The toughest global warming policy today is the European Union’s commitment to cutting 20% of greenhouse gas emissions by 2020. This will cost $235 billion. And cut temperatures at the end of the century by a measly 0.1ºF.

This doesn’t mean that we should ignore climate change. There are two compelling actions that should be part of the Pope’s agenda to serve the poor.

The first is an end to fossil fuel subsidies. Especially in poor countries, governments spend a fortune making oil cheaper. These subsidies mainly help the middle class and the rich — the people who can afford a car. The subsidies increase the amount of oil that is used, making air pollution and climate change worse. Phasing out subsidies for fossil fuels would not only help the planet, it would free money to spend on education and health.

The second necessary policy is a big global increase in green energy research, to speed the day when renewable energy sources can out compete fossil fuels. Let’s fund the basic research that will make green energy too cheap and easy to resist.

But we also need to recognize that the actions that would most help the world’s poor are not climate policies.

The Copenhagen Consensus Center commissioned research from economists to review the United Nations’ 169 proposed targets that will replace the Millennium Development Goals and shape development spending for the next 15 years, These ‘Sustainable Development Goals’ are hugely important for the planet because they will direct an estimated $2.5 trillion in development spending until 2030, as well as countless trillions in national budgets, so it’s important we get them right.

One big problem is that 169 targets is just too many. Analysis by a panel including several Nobel laureate economists established that reducing the list of development targets to just nineteen of the most important investments would generate four-times more good than trying to do all 169.

So what are the policies that would really make the real biggest difference for the world’s poorest?

One is boosting international trade by getting rid of the policies that stop one country trading with another. Lowering trade restrictions reduces poverty and triggers rapid income growth, making people much richer. Trade also helps the flow of ideas and technology.

Another chief way of transforming lives is one that is unlikely to be embraced by the Catholic Church: achieving universal access to contraception and family planning.

At an annual cost of $3.6 billion, allowing women control over pregnancy would mean 150,000 fewer maternal deaths and 600,000 fewer children being orphaned this way.

And a third area where money should be spent is nutrition. This is especially critical for young children. A good diet ensures brains and muscles develop better, producing life-long benefits. Well-nourished children stay in school longer, learn more and end up being much more productive. This is an area where the Catholic Church has shown leadership already.

These policies — ensuring freer trade, greater access to family planning, and nutritional interventions — cost a fraction of expensive, inefficient climate policies. When helping the world’s poorest is the goal, these are the investments that would truly make the biggest difference.




One of the speakers slated for the Vatican rollout of the long-awaited Papal document on climate change once said the earth is overpopulated by at least 6 billion people.

The teaching document, called an encyclical, is scheduled for release on June 18 at Vatican City. Perhaps with the exception of the 1968 encyclical on contraception, no Vatican document has been greeted with such anticipation.

The political left is hoping for a document that ties belief in global warming to a religious obligation. Climate skeptics have already started criticizing the document.

The choice of Professor John Schnellnhuber, founding director of the Postdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, as one of three presenters may be giving the left added hope and giving giving skeptics severe heartburn. He has been described as one of the more aggressive scientists on the question of man-made global warming.

Continue reading at  Breitbart.com


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