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Coronavirus Gives Us A Glimpse Of The Future

March 17, 2020

By Paul Homewood


As London falls silent, there are a few news items to pull together, all of course coronavirus connected.

In no particular order:


First, Marc Morano brings news of Christiana Figueres’ interview on Channel 4 News:

Channel 4’s Krishnan Guru-Murthy asked former UN chief Figueres: “Is there any sense that this could be self-controlling — that as we see economic growth possibly slowing down around the world, because of coronavirus — that’s actually good for the climate?”

Christiana Figueres replied: “Well, that is, ironically, of course, the other side of this — right? It may be good for climate. But I think — because there is less trade, there’s less travel, there’s less commerce.”

Weaponizing Coronavirus: Figueres also said: Expect more disease outbreaks ‘if we continue to deny, delude and delay on climate change’

Figueres also used the coronavirus as an opportunity to plug the UN’s campaign to reduce and stop meat-eating around the world. “If we continue to eat animals, we will actually be poisoning ourselves and being the genesis new diseases that we have not seen before,” Figueres explained.


There are a number of issues here:

1) She talks of “slower growth”, which ultimately means no improvements in living standards for the world’s poor. In reality, of course, her policies won’t just lead to slower growth, but a global recession.

2) Quite what diseases she has in mind if we deny climate change is a mystery.

3) As for meat eating, wet markets exist in China, and indeed many other parts of the third world, because people there are too poor to buy anything else.

They would naturally love to be able to buy their food from Aldi instead, but that would involve all of the carbon spewing technology, production and transport she loathes.

Maybe she expects them to eat bamboo shoots instead.


One of her fellow travelling eco-loonies goes even further:

Climate activist Astrophysicist & Philosopher Martín López Corredoira on coronavirus and its impacts: “Neither Greenpeace, nor Greta Thunberg, nor any other individual or collective organization have achieved so much in favor of the health of the planet in such a short time.”

“There are also positive aspects. As said by the proverb, every cloud has a silver lining…We see a reduced production in Chinese industry, which has resulted in a huge drop in China’s pollution.”

Venice…is now deathly silent. What a respite for the Venetians! What good news for the ecologists and tourist-haters! This positively affects the reduction of CO2 emission and the whole wave the destruction associated with holiday and professional conference tourism…It is certainly not very good for the economy in general, but it is fantastic for the environment.”


Meanwhile the eco-rabble at XR take a slightly different stance:


Drastic measures taken to stem the coronavirus outbreak demonstrate that climate change can be tackled, Extinction Rebellion has said.

The environmental group pointed to a media report on how pollution has dropped in China as attempts to stop the virus spreading led to factories being shut down.

According to the report by the Independent, NASA said the drop in pollution was at least partly down to the economic slowdown brought on by efforts to contain coronavirus.

“Closing industrial plants and asking people to stop at home has led to sharp drops in the burning of fossil fuels — a key cause of the climate crisis — in the world’s largest greenhouse gas producer,” the report states.

Reacting on its Facebook page, Extinction Rebellion wrote: “Proof that the climate and ecological emergency is solvable and that the solution has nothing to do with population.

“It’s more about consumption. It’s more about a not fit for purpose economy. It’s more about how we organize as a society and decide how we want to live.

“We can withdraw our consent from this ecocidal, oppressive and destructive system, and decide to live in a different way. All together. Another world is possible.”


XR don’t explain how millions of Chinese workers are supposed to actually feed, house, clothe and otherwise support their families, without any pay coming in for the rest of their lives.

Or how the country can return to pre industrial times without hundreds of millions dying.



Then we have Slow Joe coming to along to offer his solution to the “Climate Crisis”:



Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden made extreme remarks during CNN’s presidential debate on Sunday night, suggesting that he would end the oil industry’s ability to drill, would ban new fracking projects, and would take millions of cars off the road.

During a debate in December, Biden  indicated that he was willing to cut hundreds of thousands of oil and natural gas jobs.

Which all rather neatly brings up full circle to coronavirus and the lockdown of much of the European economy.

Because if Figueres, Biden and the eco-rabble get their way, the current economic dislocation will look like a Xmas party in comparison.

Forget about “slower growth”, the policies proposed, not least in the UK, will shut down whole swathes of western economies, massively cut standards of living, lead to mass unemployment and leave many towns and cities as zombiefied as London appears to be today. And not for a few weeks or months, but for years.

That is the real wake up call from the coronavirus.

  1. Broadlands permalink
    March 17, 2020 7:54 pm

    “Drastic measures taken to stem the coronavirus outbreak demonstrate that climate change can be tackled, Extinction Rebellion has said.”

    These Eco-loons seem to be in favor of more drastic virus-related shut-downs to save the planet from themselves. Avoiding meat to eat vegetation that sequesters the CO2 they hate? Biofools eating human biofuel and ethanol from grapes.

    • Phoenix44 permalink
      March 18, 2020 8:21 am

      And the drastic measures include £350 billion over a few months. These motions think we can do that for 2 years, let alone 20 years or more?

  2. deejaym permalink
    March 17, 2020 8:16 pm

    Fully expect the BBC/C4/Graun to be all over this in the not too distant future. Eco nutters/nazis will stop at nothing to push their agenda.

  3. David permalink
    March 17, 2020 8:36 pm

    Perhaps the current shut down of life’s pleasures and style will show the ecoloons just what life would be like under their proposals. Of course they have not so far had the wit to understand what life would really be like with zero CO2.

    • AllanM permalink
      March 18, 2020 10:45 am

      Ah, but the ecoloons are another generation of puritanloons. They enjoy suffering!

    • Gerry, England permalink
      March 18, 2020 5:37 pm

      It is not the ecoloons that need to see how bad life would be under Net Zero but the ordinary voters who still think there is a climate emergency and believe in global warming ‘cos an expert told me it was true’.

  4. grammarschoolman permalink
    March 17, 2020 8:40 pm

    Good job global warming will kill the virus, if you ask me.

  5. cajwbroomhill permalink
    March 17, 2020 8:59 pm

    Recent medical treatment report from Queensland by Prof David Patersopn raises hope of possible successful antiviral drugs, which could put a new outlook on these dire problems.y

  6. March 17, 2020 9:04 pm

    “… pollution has dropped in China as attempts to stop the virus spreading led to factories being shut down … closing industrial plants and asking people to stop at home has led to sharp drops in the burning of fossil fuels — a key cause of the climate crisis …”.

    Conflating air pollution and CO2 again, I wonder if they are deliberately dissembling or plain ignorant.
    If there is a dramatic fall in the CO2 emissions it should be plainly visible on next month’s Mauna Loa data:

    • David Albert permalink
      March 18, 2020 4:56 pm

      I predict the reduced emissions will be undetectable in the monthly data.
      The question is, if I am right, will anyone notice?

      • Derek Reynolds permalink
        March 19, 2020 8:11 am

        Probably not. But the ‘Lemmings’ will feel justified in their flights of eco-fantasy, until gravity introduces them to reality.

        The trick is not to join – but push . . .

  7. cajwbroomhill permalink
    March 17, 2020 9:06 pm

    Prof David Paterson et al have very recently reported a promising clinical and in vitro response to antiviral drugs and an antimalarial, just anecdotal so far but plan multimeter controlled Australian trials to start at end of this month. If successful, these new treatments might revolutionise the clinical, and wider, outlooks.

  8. JimW permalink
    March 17, 2020 9:09 pm

    Chloroquine: deals with the infection. CDC have confirmed S. Korean results. Cheap and plentiful. UK banned export of chloroquine on 26 Feb.
    This is a man made crisis, climate change was obviously too slow, someone decided there needed to be a quicker end to western civil life.
    In France we have blockades stopping anyone leaving their homes without attestations signed and dated to go to agreed destinations…not since 1939!

    • Harry Passfield permalink
      March 17, 2020 9:24 pm

      ‘Papiers, please!!’ (the pleasantry is optional) – it will come.

    • Mike Jackson permalink
      March 17, 2020 10:20 pm

      Don”t exaggerate, JimW! Yes, there are “attestations”, self-certified, which permit people to go about essential business and there is a penalty (135€) for a breach of the conditions. Mainly because France has, rightly or wrongly and nobody knows which, decided that this is the best way of limiting the spread of Covid-19 and has taken appropriate action. Which is more than can be said for the shilly-shallying that has so far characterised the British response.

      Boris may claim that the UK is in lockdown; France actually is. We’ll see which decision is the right one but I’m not alone in being more confident of the outcome than I would be if I were in England at the moment.

      As for your man-made crisis… Oh, please!

      • Russ Wood permalink
        March 19, 2020 5:00 pm

        Other reports from Paris are that some of the predominantly immigrant banlieus are not observing the isolation rules, and open markets are being held in the streets. It looks as if following sharia law rather than French means that you don’t have to worry about carrying infections around.

  9. DevonCamel permalink
    March 17, 2020 9:11 pm

    The lid really has been lifted on the agenda of the eco zealots. Be in no doubt that extremists are driving it. They long for global control of a regressive world that will ruin the lives of us all.

  10. Harry Passfield permalink
    March 17, 2020 9:14 pm

    I guess they all miss Pol Pot and his Year-Zero. If only he hadn’t promoted the novel use of plastic bags he would have achieved sainthood (he probably has, to XR activists).

    Figueres, of course, has form (you all know the quote); how she capitalised (if that’s a word she would own) on the fear of Climate Change, being only slightly to the Left of Stalin – which is close enough to Monbiot and Perry/O’Neil – in these things.

    But most of all, CC is now majoring on ‘pollution’ as an added baton with which to beat the gullible groupies of Greta (who I doubt will ever say: ‘I want to be alone’ – if only)

    As Coronavirus decimates (probably an understatement of the term, for once) the airline industry, we need the travelling public to understand that what they are giving up now, and which XR/Greta want to them to give up for good, is just a taster. Without the ability of intercontinental air-travel the world would be a – I was going to say, dangerous – introverted place indeed.

    • StephenP permalink
      March 18, 2020 8:22 am

      With no air travel, no doubt countries such as the Maldives and the West Indies will have to rethink their tourism policies. (?/s)

  11. Phillip Bratby permalink
    March 17, 2020 9:50 pm

    That well-known non-scientist and BBC News science editor, David Shukman was telling us this evening that the results from the coronavirus work done by the team at Imperial College were somewhat uncertain because the mathematical model used assumptions based on incomplete knowledge. Strangely I have never heard him say anything like that about the results from climate models. Why the BCC cannot employ people who have some knowledge of science is beyond my understanding.

    See the summary at

    • Adrian, East Anglia permalink
      March 18, 2020 9:57 am

      Those who were involved in the UK Foot-and-mouth epizootic in 2001 might well recall the disastrous interference by the same modellers and others of their ilk – “Carnage by computer” , as it was aptly described at the time.

      Unfortunately, our politicians and policy makers are in thrall of model output. The numbers, tables, graphs and animations can so easily create an illusion of precision and reality where none actually exists.

      Of course, when things go pear shaped, the modellers are suddenly keen to point out the limitations of their systems, the lack of good data, the difficult assumptions that had to be made in the design, amongst other excuses for backside covering.

    • dave permalink
      March 18, 2020 10:25 am

      Mr GrimNasty

      That is a good way of putting it.

      Objectively, this is a setback for the CAGW crowd. They are no longer the only Shock! Horror! Church in town. Without people paying attention to them they will prove to be nothing. Like one of those obscure Medieval religious crazes that you vaguely remember your History Master mentioning (‘Flagellants?’, ‘Crusade of the Children?’)

      Once the Pandemic is over, surely there will be ZERO appetite for further sacrifice.


      This sort of virus usually ‘disappears’ * in the Summer. Nobody knows why, although it may have something to do with ultraviolet, heat, better mixing of the air, higher humidity in our homes; and, perhaps, a better nutritional status. Wuhan itself now has daytime temperatures in the mid 20’s C and (if the numbers are to be believed) spread has completely ended there.

      As for the common anti-malarial Chloroquinol, the point is that this happens to be a very rare thing, a zinc ionophore. It carries zinc into cells, whether the cells like it or not. However much zinc you have in your body**, your cells normally regulate, very strictly, the amount held inside them (in the form of the zinc cation, Zn++).

      Coronaviruses, after breaking into a cell, have to instruct the cell to make an alien RNA Polymerase. Without that first step – no replication. Zn++ stops that first step! Hence the interest in anything which increases EFFECTIVE zinc.

      Another possible zinc ionophore is Quercetin, which is available in health-food stores.

      * But lurks somewhere, obviously; else it would not reappear.

      **If you are a full-on meat eater you probably ingest enough . If you are a vegetarian you might not have enough.

  12. Derek Reynolds permalink
    March 17, 2020 10:14 pm

    Empty Central London maybe, but I have colleagues who are reporting the same numbers of people, the same traffic hold-ups in the outer urban areas.

    Another take:

  13. Mack permalink
    March 17, 2020 10:19 pm

    The ultimate irony of the Corona pandemic is that man made ‘carbon’ emissions will have fallen through the floor by the end of 2020 in tandem with the current global industrial and retail downturn and yet, I suspect, measured global CO2 emissions from all sources will have risen. Just as they did during the financial crash of 2008 and as they have been for the past couple of centuries irrespective of the weather and periodic scales of human activity

    Should global CO2 emissions from natural sources continue to rise against a slump in anthropogenic emissions, perhaps it might make the even slightly curious suspect, at year’s end, that man’s impact on the atmosphere is a lot less significant than they were led to believe?

    • March 18, 2020 12:00 am

      When annual changes in emissions of CO2 are charted against annual changes in Mauna Loa data they don’t correlate, Jamal Munshi looked at this:

      “The IPCC carbon budget concludes that changes in atmospheric CO2 are driven by fossil fuel emissions on a year by year basis. A testable implication of the validity of this carbon budget is that changes in atmospheric CO2 should be correlated with fossil fuel emissions at an annual time scale net of long term trends. A test of this relationship with in situ CO2 data from Mauna Loa 1958-2016 and flask CO2 data from twenty three stations around the world 1967-2015 is presented.

      The test fails to show that annual changes in atmospheric CO2 levels can be attributed to annual emissions. The finding is consistent with prior studies that found no evidence to relate the rate of warming to emissions and they imply that the IPCC carbon budget is flawed possibly because of insufficient attention to uncertainty, excessive reliance on net flows, and the use of circular reasoning that subsumes a role for fossil fuel emissions in the observed increase in atmospheric CO2.”

      Mauna Loa figures increase monotonically, suggesting they arise from the warmer oceans, which release CO2.

    • Tim Spence permalink
      March 18, 2020 12:02 pm

      They’ll massage the figures Mack, it’s just a shell game.

  14. MrGrimNasty permalink
    March 17, 2020 10:42 pm

    “Drastic measures taken to stem the coronavirus outbreak demonstrate that climate change can be tackled, Extinction Rebellion has said.”

    Big difference between temporary actions to be followed by a rapid economic catch up, and permanent economic ruin.

    Like comparing jumping off a bridge attached to a bungee rope, to no rope and no safety net at all – successful completion of a bungee jump does not show suicide is safe.

  15. March 17, 2020 10:50 pm

    Sex will be the only entertainment available to the bored masses at home which will lead to a massive increase in population. what does The Extinction Rebellion plan to do ?

  16. Broadlands permalink
    March 18, 2020 12:31 am

    “The ultimate irony of the Corona pandemic is that man made ‘carbon’ emissions will have fallen through the floor by the end of 2020 in tandem with the current global industrial and retail downturn and yet, I suspect, measured global CO2 emissions from all sources will have risen. ”

    Very good point! There is no way to immediately stop all carbon fuel emissions. So while ‘we’ try to rapidly lower the CO2 emissions to reach net-zero ‘we’ will necessarily keep adding CO2 until (assuming ‘we’ are stupid enough?) approach and reach this impossible goal. By that time the Mauna Loa value could be 500 ppm, if not more. And, the ocean-atmosphere system will still have all of the CO2 already added, minus the few million tons CCS industry may have stored somewhere…safely? Reality has fallen through the floor!

  17. bobn permalink
    March 18, 2020 1:32 am

    Probability of virus coming from spontaneous mutation via wuhan wet market 1 in 100 million.
    Probability of virus leaking from bio disease research lab in Wuhan that has published papers about experiments on Bat derived coronavirus and gene splicing viruses with Hiv viruses 1 in 10. (i have copies of the papers if interested).

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      March 18, 2020 2:36 am

      I doubt it makes any differenced to how we should be dealing with the virus, unless you think they also have an antidote.

      • Phil O'Sophical permalink
        March 18, 2020 11:31 am

        Well both the Chinese and Koreans published papers in Feb, showing that both Chorloquine and Lopinavir (anti-virals) allow zinc to enter the viral cell and prevent it replicating. The Koreans are using it and their disease to death conversion rate is very low.

      • dave permalink
        March 20, 2020 11:14 am

        “…allow zinc to enter the viral cell and prevent it replicating”

        A virus is technically not a cell.

        You mean, ‘…allow zinc to enter the cell which is under viral attack.’

        Extra Zn++ inside a cell prevents RNA-type viruses from hi-jacking the machinery of the cell. Puts the virus rather in the situation of a hungry intruder in a house, who is not able to cook anything without the key to the store-room.

    • Phoenix44 permalink
      March 18, 2020 9:16 am

      Nonsense probabilities. And what do they actually measure? Viruses have crossed between species forever as far as we can tell. Many, many times. So somethi g we know can happen has a probability of 1 in 100 million? Of course not.

    • MrGrimNasty permalink
      March 18, 2020 9:51 am

      That conspiracy theory has been doing the rounds since day one. Including the suggestion that a milder version was released to cover up the deadly version (and it has at times seemed there are 2 types, and now reports that it is ‘mutating’ into a less harmful version – consistent with an engineered bio-weapon.)

      Anything possible could have happened, regardless of stated odds (often made up by ‘experts’ on the hoof). e.g. What are the odds of a foreign power using a nerve agent next door to Porton Down where it is likely held? So you would believe this was a false flag operation or accidental escape?

      But recent history has examples of conspiracy theory allegations that turned out to be true/likely true – e.g. WMD dossier ‘sexed up’ to justify Iraq war, poison gas attacks in Syria that were faked/self inflicted to manipulate West into action, climate ‘science’!!!!!

      And other things that remain clearly nuts – flat earth, faked moon landings etc.

      Time and the emerging weight of evidence may reveal the real answers, but being China probably not, or at least not with sufficient trust to nail the ‘truth’ either way.

  18. donald penman permalink
    March 18, 2020 4:21 am

    I gave up trying to phone my doctor after waiting for an hour to speak to anyone and the shops have all been emptied by people panic buying. It is like that scene in South Park where everyone is fleeing from global warming. I am going to have my eyesight checked today they at least have not shut done unlike the medical practices. I have lost all respect for the population of the UK to deal with any crises, they just panic.

    • MrGrimNasty permalink
      March 18, 2020 9:57 am

      I hope the lesson will be taken. The supermarkets need a coordinated policy to limit multiple purchases at the first sign of panic in the future.

    • Mad Mike permalink
      March 18, 2020 11:54 am

      Donald, its the result of the me me attitude that has grown in to our culture. It’ll be OK now as our production and distribution facilities are robust and working just fine but, if XR gets their way, our economy will be much weakened and unable to replenish the shops etc.

      Pandemics will still come and go, they did before the industrial revolution and to follow the XR route will lead to a more certain, worsening effect that will claim many more lives than this one will.

  19. grammarschoolman permalink
    March 18, 2020 8:01 am

    Alternatively, it could open people’s eyes to the reality of life under net zero, and destroy all public support for it:

  20. Ian Cook permalink
    March 18, 2020 8:48 am

    This is the kind of gift crisis the Marxists long for, where the state ‘has’ to take control. Thank goodness Corbyn didn’t get in, can you imagine the mess? But yes, this needs to be emphasised to the public and politicians, that this level and worse, of societal and economic collapse is what life would be like if we continue to allow eco-idiots, eco-zombies to run policy making.

  21. theguvnor permalink
    March 18, 2020 9:40 am

    Interesting article here on the Petri Dish or is that the Diamond Princess. 83% of people unaffected in an environment perfect to distribute bug quickly.
    Illness rate probably no more than a normal winter season. Also another reason 3 places particularly hit, Lombardy, Wuhan, Qom all have terrible air pollution rates and those affected likely already compromised and any winter bug would see them on their way. Corona certainly = aura

  22. March 18, 2020 10:10 am

    How we all laughed when extinction rebellion said they wanted to stop all flights stop people driving to work stop all industrial activities. That is not going to happen we thought.
    But now it has. So we are told a new strain of corona virus has been detected in China .
    The numbers were low until they changed there method of testing. No longer testing blood samples looking for this new strain but using CT scans of the lungs looking for fluid in the lungs. That can be produced by many strains of the corona virus including the common cold.
    So the UK is supposed to go into shutdown to save us. But you can not wrap people up in cotton wool forever. The only way to gain immunity is to be exposed to the virus. Rather than banning gatherings they should be encouraging them. Some temporary protection for the most vulnerable. Seasonal flue normally starts in October and ends in April.
    It started in China in November and is starting to disappear in China and may be nearly gone in April.

    • Up2snuff permalink
      March 18, 2020 11:17 am

      From what I have learned from immunologists (mostly via the BBC part of the MSM) because the Covid-19 virus is highly mutating, would not logic then suggest that herd immunity for Covid-19 will be difficult to achieve?

      The big example of this is the ‘common’ cold virus, which is caught by millions in their herds around the globe every single year. Another example would be the influenza virus.

      A contra-example would be the success of various measles, mumps and rubella vaccines (both singularly and in combination) in eliminating those illnesses around the globe.

      • March 18, 2020 1:06 pm

        They may be right or wrong and maybe herd immunity would not work.
        But mostly they say it is mild for healthy people. So healthy people could continue as normal. They say they want to protect the vulnerable by preventing them coming in contact with the virus so they must stop the healthy getting the virus. If the virus disappears in April due to the season this might work. But If flu virus tends to disappear in April not just due to the season but due to a large proportion becoming infected and gaining resistance then preventing this will mean the virus is less likely to disappear.
        In China they isolated an area maybe those in that are are acquiring immunity
        causing a drop in new infections.

    • Mad Mike permalink
      March 18, 2020 11:46 am

      After 9/11 there was a significant increase in daytime temperatures in the US and eventually elsewhere. It was down to taking all civilian aircraft out of the skies in the US and Canada. They measured a 2C increase during the day with some increased cooling at night. Overall it led to warming. Since the supposed limit to temperature rise before irreversible changes would occur is 1.5C according to the alarmists, I’m surprised at their position on flying unless, of course, its more about control.

  23. saparonia permalink
    March 18, 2020 10:32 am

    The economy forecasters were already predicting a collapse BEFORE coronovirus first appeared in Wuhan.

    • Up2snuff permalink
      March 18, 2020 11:29 am

      You are correct. A lot of the lessons from the 2007-2009 (largely western world) Crash have not been learned, many of the mistakes from 2000-2006 are being repeated.

  24. saparonia permalink
    March 18, 2020 10:33 am

    The economy forecasters were already predicting a collapse before the outbreak in Wuhan.

  25. Vernon E permalink
    March 18, 2020 11:07 am

    The first action in any hostile situation is rationing. No time to print/distribute ration books but no reason why retailers, esp supermarkets, shouldn’t impose their own rationing and the army can provide protection against the abuses that will inevitably occur against staff,. Simples.

  26. Phil O'Sophical permalink
    March 18, 2020 11:14 am

    “Neither Greenpeace, nor Greta Thunberg, nor any other individual or collective organization have achieved so much in favor of the health of the planet in such a short time.”

    So sickness is health. Pure Orwell.

    And it dredges up that other misnomer, euphemism or whatever you call it, “the health of the planet.” What state should it be in? The fact that it recently began to support sentient life (although that is open to question these days) is a quirk, not the norm. It has been through drastic and never-ending change for 4.5bn years. There is no “health of the planet.”

  27. CheshireRed permalink
    March 18, 2020 11:18 am

    Those policies are cloaked in the virtuous respectability of Saving the Planet. They are nothing of the sort. In reality they’re advocating for global destitution for the many, unchallenged authority status for the select few and effectively the wholesale murder of millions.

    Pol Pot advocated such policies and we remember him as a tyrannical despot. They deserve to be in jail for making such demands.

  28. Thomas Carr permalink
    March 18, 2020 12:09 pm

    Well done Derek Reynolds in giving us access to Wolfgang Wodarg’s short lecture. It is difficult not to conclude that Christine Figueres and Extinction Rebellion are not in their own agendas part of a massive fraud.

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