Opponents of cap-and-trade legislation must believe that a massive plague will wipe out 2.5 billion people sometime between now and 2050. Otherwise, their stance makes no sense, writes Thomas Friedman of the New York Times. Even if you don’t believe climate change is real—and Friedman does—you can’t deny that the world is getting more crowded. According to a 2006 UN report, the population will rise 2.5 billion by 2050.
“The energy, climate, water, and pollution implications of adding another 2.5 billion mouths to feed will be staggering,” says Friedman. At the same time, the world’s getting flatter, with more developing nations aspiring to America’s lifestyle. If they all drive oil-burning cars—instead of clean, American-invented alternatives—that’ll enrich petro-dictators in Iran, Venezuela, and Russia. So either deniers don’t care, or believe “a global pandemic or mass outbreak of abstinence will freeze the world population—forever.”