Larry Kudlow: We can help the planet solve its problems without bankrupting families and ending prosperity

Kudlow: The Bidens have utterly perverted NEPA’s mission

 ‘Kudlow’ host provides insight on the history of Earth Day.

Happy Friday, everyone. Now you probably don't know this, but today is Earth Day! The reason you don't know it is probably because you have to look long and hard to find any reference to Earth Day. 

The non-coverage of this non-event is, we'll call it, "earth shattering." Now CNN is covering Earth Day and in fact they've got their own little earth week going. It figures, doesn't it? 

There's a brutal story in the Washington Examiner that reminds us that the founder of Earth Day, a very smart ivy-league graduate, unfortunately murdered his former girlfriend. Authorities in Philadelphia had to chase him all over the globe. They found the girlfriend's corpse in a trunk in the guy's apartment and after many years they tracked him down when he was then tried, convicted and sentenced to life in prison. Just saying. 


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It's worth noting that Earth Day began in 1970, which is when the National Environment Protection Act was passed, called NEPA, and also the Environmental Protection Agency, called EPA. 

All this under Republican President Richard Nixon. And you know what folks? Over the last five decades, the United States has made tremendous progress regarding its dealings with the planet Earth. Right now, in the present, the U.S. has the cleanest air and the cleanest water and the lowest carbon emissions of any major country on this planet, Earth. 

So, if any of you want to attribute these remarkably positive achievements to the inception of Earth Day, even though the founder killed his girlfriend and put her in a trunk, I'm OK with it! 

That is, I'm OK with the progress of clean air and clean water. I do not recommend killing your girlfriend and putting her in the trunk. 

All that said, the key point is, we simply do not have some kind of existential climate risk crisis, despite what virtually every person in the Biden administration, from the top on down, keeps telling us. As far as an existential climate risk, that is a big lie.  

Just recently, the Bidens have taken NEPA, which has served some useful purposes down through the years, and utterly perverted its mission. NEPA is the environmental gate that opens the door to all sorts of important infrastructure in this country. 


President Biden speaks at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, in Greensboro, N.C., Thursday, April 14, 2022.  (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster / AP Newsroom)

It had gotten pretty long in the tooth with permitting decisions often postponed by 10 or 15 years until President Trump came along and slashed red tape in order to deregulate permitting to under 2 years so important projects that would hire millions of hard-hat blue collar middle American workers could proceed and give the economy a supply-side boost. 

Now, however, the radical woke greenies in the Biden White House have made a mockery of NEPA and infrastructure. Instead of fast-tracking permits for bridges, roads, highways, tunnels, fracking, pipelines, critical mineral resource mining, utility transmissions for renewable and fossil power, or nuclear energy, the new NEPA rules out this week will prevent all of this and inflict severe punishment on the economy.  

There may not be a new highway bridge, pipeline, or even wind energy transmission line in my lifetime! The motto of this crazy White House rule is "no new construction" through newfangled unsubstantiated and non-scientific metrics, including social carbon costs, so-called cumulative environmental impact, direct impact, indirect impact, social justice, equality, undeserved communities. I mean the thing reads like a left-wing woke manifesto.  

The only thing missing is a rule that would keep parents out of school board meetings, but maybe we'll find that too in the fine print. 

I want to refer again to Senator Mitt Romney's Wall Street Journal editorial where he said "President Biden needs to ditch his woke advisers and surround himself with people who want to get the economy working again." 


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So true, but so far it ain't happening. I also want to refer to my pal and Hoover Institution scholar Bjorn Lomborg who has told us time and again that through a combination of economic growth and innovation we can solve climate issues over the next hundred years. That's the way to do it. 

Lomborg, by the way, has pointed out that planet-wide these crazy, woke, climate policies, which would end fossils with no alternatives, would cost $5 trillion a year. Economic growth and technology advances that would flow from sound economic principles will do the trick. 


Stop the spending, borrowing, money printing and regulating. Unleash the supply-side of the economy. Keep the tax rates as low as possible. 

Then we can truly help the planet solve its problems without bankrupting families and ending prosperity. Now that would be a good Earth Day! 

This article is adapted from Larry Kudlow's opening commentary on the April 22, 2022, edition of "Kudlow."

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