President Joe Biden’s just-appointed climate czar, former Secretary of State John Kerry, offered up an empty moral defense when he was caught by a reporter who, in 2019, asked him why he traveled to Iceland on a private jet.
Kerry, who has described the “climate crisis” as “a war” that will cost lives, will result in the displacement of millions of people around the globe, and will usher in “profoundly catastrophic changes” to the world, said flying on a private jet to receive an award for his advocacy was the “only choice for somebody like me.”
“It’s the only choice for somebody like me, who is traveling the world to win this battle,” he said. “I negotiated the Paris Accord for the United States. I’ve been involved in this fight for years. I negotiated with [Chinese] President Xi to bring President Xi to the table so we could get Paris. And, I believe, the time it takes me to get somewhere — I can’t sail across the ocean. I have to fly to meet with people and get things done.”
Ultimately, Kerry reasoned it is OK for him to fly private jets — which emit up to 40 times more carbon per person than does flying commercial — because he has dedicated his life to forcing Americans to emit less carbon dioxide.
The former diplomat’s family, it’s worth noting, owns a private jet.
Kerry faced criticism from Republicans last week when he said people working in energy and coal who lose their jobs because of climate control regulations will “have better choices” and can “go to work to make the solar panels.”
His comment came after Biden signed an executive order to nix construction of the Keystone XL pipeline, a direct route that would have sent 830,000 barrels of oil each day from Alberta, Canada, to Steele City, Nebraska, effectively killing around 11,000 future jobs.
“What an arrogant, out-of-touch statement for a centimillionare to say,” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said of Kerry’s comments. “You know, ‘You little people, you know, I don’t like the choices you’re making, and so your jobs go away,’ as John Kerry said right there.”
Former White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer also rebuked Kerry for his remarks, noting he once opposed a wind farm project on the Nantucket Sound because he didn’t want it to disturb he view.
Kerry, for his part, has said he supported the project. He just wanted it to be built somewhere else so he didn’t have to see it.