Weekend before last, hundreds of thousands swarmed the streets of New York for the “People’s Climate March”, a demonstration to demand the nations participating in that weekend’s UN Climate Summit dramatically cut their fossil fuel use. No advocacy group, consumer group, or industry group appeared willing to stand against it, despite the fact that the incredible standard of living we enjoy in the western world is made possible by our access to cheap, plentiful, reliable energy, 85% of which comes from fossil fuels. That is, no such group but Center for Industrial Progress.
You’ve probably heard about our counter-protest already from some of the separate articles, photos, videos etc. that have been shared around piece-by-piece. So that no one has to miss anything from Alex Epstein’s visit to “stand in the middle and tell them the truth”, I put an overview of this coverage together here in one place that’s easy to reference or browse through.
Photos and Videos
The photos are available together in an album on Alex Epstein’s official Facebook page, where you can see Alex standing up to the mob, or the “I Love Fossil Fuels” sign facing the marchers from the hotel window. You can also see Alex with Leonardo DiCaprio, who uses more fossil fuels energy than him, though Alex aspires to use just as much.
The I Love Fossil Fuels Facebook page contributed with a simple, visual reminder that fossil fuels make New York possible, which resonated more than anything it’s ever posted, earning 269 likes and 99 shares.
In addition to the footage of the march uploaded that day, more videos were uploaded through the following week. Our YouTube channel has a full playlist of all twelve to browse through. Some of the most popular ones are Part 2: People’s Climate March Gets a Little Violent, Part 3: “You Know, Your Clothes are Fracked!”, and Part 11: No Real Scientists, Plenty of Real Hooligans.
CIP’s decision to stand against the marchers thankfully got the attention of media outlets. The Washington Times dedicated the bulk of an article to it. Alex said it was pretty good reporting aside from use of the meaningless and therefore manipulative term “climate change skeptic”, and the declaration that he was “roughed up” by climate change activists. They may have tried to rough him up at points, but they weren’t successful. Alex reported: “If you want to see me get roughed up, you’ll have to watch my Jiu-Jitsu classes.”
Fox News referenced CIP both in its Sunday article “UN calls for ‘all hands on deck’ to tackle climate change” and its Monday article “UN touts Climate Summit successes”. The first dedicated four full paragraphs to Alex’s arguments, and he called it “possibly CIP’s best news coverage to date”.
Canada’s Sun News Network covered the counter-protest twice. The first time featured clips from the YouTube videos and in the second, they had Alex on the show to personally explain why he went.
The Heartland Institute dedicated a full blog post to the trip, calling it “courageous, and also hilarious”. We’ve heard repeatedly that it must have taken a lot of courage but (as Heartland mentions) Alex has downplayed the role it played. He had this to say in our most recent newsletter:
Courage may be part of it, but a lot of people who are not standing up now would find the courage to stand up for themselves against, say, racism or even for wage increases. As I like to ask the coal industry, why are you renowned for standing up for higher wages but not for your very existence?
Overwhelmingly, the key factor is moral clarity.
The more clearly you understand the moral case for fossil fuels, the easier it is to defend fossil fuels publicly—and, likewise, the harder it is to stand by and not defend them.
The reason few industry workers and consumers are willing to take on environmentalists in the debate is that they are not clear about the moral value of fossil fuels.
Making the Moral Case for Fossil Fuels
Alex’s visit to New York was preluded with a popular Forbes article explaining that the march is calling for “policies that would cut billions of lives short”, and laying out six reasons the United Nations should not intervene on fossil fuel use.
But of course, an article can only say so much. Thankfully Alex’s upcoming book The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels will make you as clear as possible about the moral value of fossil fuels, and teach you to make others equally clear. It’s now just six weeks away and if you haven’t already, visit moralcaseforfossilfuels.com to download the first chapter.
The best thing we can do to take on environmentalists is to get a copy of The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels into as many hands as possible, and a book succeeds or fails at reaching a wide audience based on word of mouth—or word of tweet. That’s why we created a Thunderclap to promote the new book. A Thunderclap lets people who are passionate about something pledge their Facebook and/or Twitter accounts to automatically post a message advocating it at a pre-determined time and date. If you know how important fossil fuels are to your life, add yourself to the list, and make sure that by the time the book is released, your friends and family will be ready to find out as well.