Marc Morano of CFACT managed to pack a whole lot of hot air into just a couple short minutes during an appearance on Fox Business Wednesday in a segment on air conditioning.
The impetus for the segment was a new study in PLOS Medicine that found the increased use of air conditioners, if powered by fossil fuels, will be responsible for $9 billion in damages and a thousand deaths a year by mid-century.
Morano, instead of saying anything honest or accurate, does what he does best and claimed people are calling to ration air conditioning. In the rush transcript on his website, he included three links to support his assertion.
But if you follow those links, you won’t find a single call to ration air conditioning. The first one is an op-ed in the Washington Post imagining what DC would be like if A/C were only used where absolutely needed to protect the vulnerable. The second is a Washington Post profile of a Philadelphia family’s life without A/C, a decision made for economic and environmental reasons. The third is a screed in the far-right CNS [fake] News that implies Obama and John Kerry’s work towards A/Cs that emit neither ozone-depleting substances or greenhouse gasses means they could try to take yours away.
Looks like the very first thing out of Morano’s mouth during the Fox interview was patently untrue, even by his own citations. Talking about someone’s experience without it A/C their home, or the larger discussion around switching to a different type of A/C, are unequivocally different than calling to ration it. It’s the difference between saying “I went on a diet” and “I’m putting you on a diet.”
The interview only goes downhill from there. Morano goes on to cite the 2003 heatwave in Europe which caused thousands of deaths as evidence that heat waves kill and air conditioners save lives. Which is true, and new A/Cs were a key reason why a similar heatwave in 2012 was far less lethal. But Morano misses the real point: this heat wave was one of the first extreme weather events that was conclusively linked to climate change.’
A 2004 study found that greenhouse gas emissions doubled the likelihood of the heatwave. By 2016, the science was advanced enough to show that half of the deaths in London and Paris during the 2003 heatwave were attributable to climate change. That means Morano’s big “gotcha” is actually an example of the study’s main point: more A/Cs means more global warming.
And as Morano surely knows, not everyone can afford air conditioning. And those working or playing outside certainly don’t benefit from it. Instead, they’ll face increased risks of heat stroke and death.
That doesn’t seem to bother Morano. What does, apparently, is an unfounded fear that thanks to Obama, access to air conditioning “will be restricted to prevent global warming.” A claim for which even he doesn’t even try to provide any evidence...because there is none.
We’d call it a heat-induced fever dream, but that would imply that Morano isn’t entirely intentional about his deception.
Top Climate and Clean Energy Stories: