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Pope Francis calls for ‘global financial charter’ at Vatican climate change conference

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From LifeSiteNews

By Michael Haynes, Snr. Vatican Correspondent

Addressing a Vatican-hosted climate change conference, Pope Francis called for a “new global financial charter” by 2025 which would be centered on climate change and “ecological debt.”

“There is a need to develop a new financial architecture capable of responding to the demands of the Global South and of the island states that have been seriously affected by climate catastrophes,” said Pope Francis on Thursday, May 16.

The Pontiff’s words came towards the end of his keynote address at the conference “Climate Crisis to Climate Resilience,” organized jointly by the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Sciences and Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences.

Outlining a three-fold action plan to respond to the “planetary crisis,” Francis told the participants that any such action must be centered around financial action. 

“The restructuring and reduction of debt, together with the development of a new global financial charter by 2025, acknowledging a sort of ecological debt – we must work on this term: ecological debt – can be of great assistance in mitigating climate changes,” he said, appearing to allude to an already existing, but as yet unpublished, charter.

The Pope’s three-fold plan also highlighted his call for “policy changes” based on climate adherence and the reduction of warming, fossil fuel reliance, and carbon dioxide: 

First, a universal approach and swift and decisive action is needed, capable of producing policy changes and decisions. Second, we need to reverse the curve of warming, seeking to halve the rate of warming in the short space of a quarter of a century. At the same time, we need to aim for global de-carbonization, eliminating the dependence on fossil fuels. 

Third, large quantities of carbon dioxide must be removed from the atmosphere through environmental management spanning several generations.

Francis’ call for finance-related policies to implement climate change goals will have been met especially warmly by certain attendees of the Vatican’s conference. Among the numerous participants and speakers at the three-day event were ardent pro-climate change advocates California Gov. Gavin Newsom, London’s Mayor Sadiq Khan, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, Massachusetts’s lesbian Gov. Maura Healey, along with academics and politicians from South America, Africa, Italy, and Taiwan.

Newsom and Khan – both of whom have implemented sweeping and highly controversial measures in the name of climate change – spoke respectively on “The Gold Standard – Climate Leadership in the Golden State” and “Governance in the Age of Climate Change.” Khan also wrote in the U.K.’s The Tablet that he joins his voice to that of Francis “to support climate resilience efforts and advocate for climate justice.”

Green finance for the future

Last October 4, Francis published a second part to his 2015 environmental encyclical letter Laudato Si’ in the form of the Apostolic Exhortation Laudate Deum, in which he issued stark calls for “obligatory” measures across the globe to address the issue of “climate change.”

READ: Pope Francis calls for obligatory global ‘climate change’ policies in new document ‘Laudate Deum’

“It is no longer possible to doubt the human – ‘anthropic’ – origin of climate change,” wrote the Pontiff, before later calling for mandatory alignment with “green” policies:

If there is sincere interest in making COP28 a historic event that honors and ennobles us as human beings, then one can only hope for binding forms of energy transition that meet three conditions: that they be efficient, obligatory and readily monitored.

Francis’ oft-repeated lines on the subject have repeatedly born similarities to the sentiments expressed by key globalist and founder of the World Economic Forum (WEF) Klaus Schwab, whose proposed anti-Catholic “Great Reset” is underpinned by a focus on a “green” financial agenda, as he mentions the “withdrawal of fossil-fuel subsidies” and a new financial system based on “investments” which advance “equality and sustainability” and the building of a “‘green’ urban infrastructure.”

Indeed, the world of finance is one of the sectors that is most devoted to implementing “climate change” policies, such as those outlined by the Paris Agreement – the pro-abortion climate agreement to which the Vatican joined in 2022.

A lesser-known third aim of the Paris Agreement pertains directly to the financial element of the document, ensuring that the future of global finance is directly connected to the various climate change efforts laid out in the Paris Agreement. It reads:

Making finance flows consistent with a pathway towards low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient development.

This aim provides the basis for international governments to link provision of finance to the implementation of the “green” agenda of the Paris Agreement. The almost unknown Network of Central Banks and Supervisors for Greening the Financial System (NGFS) was born at the Paris “One Planet Summit” in December 2017, with the purpose of transforming the global economy in alignment with “green” climate change policies. 

READ: Secretive international banking group may enforce Great Reset ‘green’ agenda on world

Already, it numbers 138 members, with an additional 21 observer organizations, including national and international banks such as the “Bank of Canada; Bank of England; Banque de France; Dubai Financial Services Authority; European Central Bank; Japan FSA; People’s Bank of China; Swiss National Bank; U.S. Federal Reserve.”

Such policies are regularly at the forefront of international finance meetings as well. One such example was last year, when French President Emmanuel Macron called for a “public finance shock” based around climate issues and global finance. His address was given to international leaders at the 2023 Summit for a New Global Financial Pact, held in Paris.

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Automotive

‘Save Our Cars’ Is A Winning Campaign Message In An Age Of EV Mandates

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From the Daily Caller News Foundation

By KEVIN MOONEY

 

Automobile consumers who treasure the open roads during the summertime could upend the presidential campaign and U.S. Senate races in surprising places if public opposition to electric-vehicle mandates and other regulations continues to rise.

That is what some recent polls suggest and it certainly helps to explain why the Biden administration is poised to artificially reduce fuel prices by selling one million barrels of gasoline from an energy reserve in New England timed with the summer driving season and in anticipation of the November elections.

Since the East Coast consumed in excess of three million barrels a day of gasoline last June, it is not evident that having an additional one million barrels on the market will make an appreciable difference.

Moreover, there is an argument to be made that by tapping into the reserve Team Biden is leaving the region open to cyberattacks that would disrupt energy supplies. (Recall, that is precisely what happened throughout the southeast in 2021 when a ransomware attack hit the Colonial Pipeline.)

But even in the absence of any cyber drama, the cumulative effect of President Joe Biden’s anti-energy agenda is already registering with consumers who benefit from affordable, reliable energy. This is particularly true where conventional, gas-powered cars are concerned.

On holiday weekends, cars erase differences, bring families together and improve the quality of life. The American Automobile Association (AAA) predicts almost 50 million people will travel 50 miles or more from their homes to celebrate Independence Day over the weekend of June 30 to July 4.

This would represent an increase of 3.7% from 2021 bringing travel volumes to where they were prior to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2019. This increase will be particularly acute with AAA expecting 42 million Americans to hit the roads this coming Independence Day.

But what about those EV mandates?

President Biden and California Gov. Gavin Newsom, a fellow Democrat, remain undeterred by the paucity of charging stations, the limited range of EV’s, their exorbitant costs, and the vulnerability of foreign supply chains leading back to China as they press ahead with new regulatory initiatives. Biden’s Environmental Protection Agency finalized a tailpipe emissions rule in March aimed at coercing automakers into selling more EVs while the California Air Resources Board is pressing ahead with a “zero emissions” rule the board approved last year to meet Newsom’s stated climate goals.

California is clearly working hand in glove with the Biden administration to achieve zero emissions goals for vehicles by 2035. This effort will most certainly limit consumer choice and raise costs.

Despite all the subsidies and regulatory schemes developed to favor EV’s, they represent only about 1% of the 290 million vehicles in the U.S. today. Meanwhile EV costs continue to soar.

Recent studies also show that EVs, on average, are more expensive to own and operate than their gas-powered counterparts. So how should consumers respond to the regulatory onslaught?

Enter the “Save Our Cars Coalition,” which includes 31 national and state organizations devoted to preserving the ability of consumers to select the vehicles most suitable to their needs.

Tom Pyle, president of the Institute for Energy Research, a coalition member that favors free market energy policies, views cars as an integral component of American life. The Biden-Newsom regulations amount to what Pyle describes as “an assault on American freedom.”

“In a nation as expansive as the United States, cars are not merely vehicles, they are integral to the American way of life,” Pyle says. “They play a pivotal role in our daily lives, especially in suburban and rural settings. This modern-day prohibition would outlaw a product and a value–in this case, gasoline-powered cars and trucks that have created personal mobility on an unprecedented scale – that it cannot persuade people to forego themselves.”

The coalition is perfectly positioned to make EV mandates a campaign issue in areas where the affordability of cars capable of traversing long distances without frequent stops is very much on the minds of voters. State officials who continue to double-down on California-type regulations will only serve to bolster the coalition’s arguments.

By contrast, states that break free from California’s emissions standards could become surprisingly competitive in the presidential race. Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin, a Republican, recently announced that he would end California’s EV mandate in his state by the end of this year. Although Virginia hasn’t backed a Republican for president since George W. Bush was re-elected in 2004, polls show Biden and  Donald Trump are in a dead heat. The former, and perhaps future Republican president, is on record opposing Biden’s EV mandates.

By contrast, Gov. Phil Murphy of New Jersey, a Democrat elected in 2017 and re-elected in 2021, is moving full speed ahead with a California-type mandate requiring all new car sales to be electric by 2035. Polls show Murphy’s Jersey constituents are not keen on the policy change. In fact, more than half of state residents say they are not inclined to buy an electric car even with the mandates.

New Jersey has not voted for a Republican presidential candidate since George Bush Sr. won the state in 1988. But fresh polls show Biden leading Trump by just seven points in the Garden State. It is worth noting that New Jersey has a large block of unaffiliated voters that can be pliable in tight races such as the most recent gubernatorial campaign.

Murphy almost lost his re-election bid to Republican Jack Ciattarelli, a former assemblyman and businessman, who came within a few percentage points of pulling off an upset. Trump’s campaign rally in Wildwood, N.J., that attracted more than 100,000 people could also serve as a barometer for a potentially close election. A beach resort community, Wildwood is practically inaccessible without the kind of vehicles Biden and Newsom are attempting to ban.

The big prize though may be Pennsylvania where Trump is leading Biden in recent polls. There is also a competitive U.S. Senate race in that state between Sen. Robert Casey Jr., the Democratic incumbent, and Dave McCormick, the Republican challenger.

Polls show Casey is only ahead by six points. So far, Casey has been ducking and avoiding any questions about his position on EV mandates. With Trump already leading, and McCormick gaining in the Keystone State, anyone running on a platform of “Save Our Cars” could have a field day.

Kevin Mooney is the Senior Investigative Reporter at the Commonwealth Foundation’s free-market think tank and writes for several national publications. Twitter: @KevinMooneyDC

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Energy

Industry groups sue over Biden regulation requiring electric school buses, trucks

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From The Center Square

By

A coalition of industry groups have filed a lawsuit challenging a Biden administration rule.

A dozen groups joined together to sue the Environmental Protection Agency for the Biden administration’s new rule, finalized earlier this year, which requires model 2027 trucks to meet strict emissions standards that critics say are meant to push out diesel and gas vehicles and to replace them with electric vehicles.

The EPA’s “Greenhouse Gas Emissions Standards for Heavy-Duty Vehicles – Phase 3” is the rule in question.

“The new standards will be applicable to HD vocational vehicles (such as delivery trucks, refuse haulers, public utility trucks, transit, shuttle, school buses, etc.) and tractors (such as day cabs and sleeper cabs on tractor-trailer trucks),” EPA said.

Critics argue the rules are so strict that the only option will be to go electric, part of a nationwide effort by the Biden administration to push Americans into electric vehicles. However, currently the electric grid could not handle a wholesale transition of to electric vehicles, posing a major infrastructure problem.

Notably, as The Center Square previously reported, a coalition of 19 states filed a complaint with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Tuesday to challenge a recent federal rule giving the federal government broad power over the electric grid.

“FERC has never been granted the authority to revamp the structure of state energy grids or force states and their ratepayers to subsidize large-scale transmission lines that don’t transport enough energy to justify the cost,” the states argue. “This encroachment upon state authority far exceeds FERC’s limited purview and damages the ability of states to regulate their electric grids efficiently, all in the name of advancing costly climate goals.”

The American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers is one of the groups that joined to protest the Biden EPA rule. They argue the EPA overstepped its authority and that it will spike costs for Americans.

“The Heavy Duty Vehicle (HDV) regulation finalized this spring aims to phase out trucks that run on American-made, American-grown diesel, biodiesel, renewable diesel and renewable natural gas,” Rich Moskowitz, AFPM General Counsel, said in a statement. “Americans will pay dearly because of it.”

Moskowitz said the federal government cannot enact such a drastic change without explicit direction from Congress.

“This policy will increase costs for consumers, dramatically strain the U.S. electric grid, contribute to more traffic and congestion on roads, undermine our energy independence, and impact every sector of the U.S. economy,” he said.

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