by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
National Geographic says climate change is “the greatest threat to human health,” but it’s not so grave that it prevents them from jetting the elite to what the magazine describes as some of the world’s “far-flung destinations” on a massive private jet.
National Geographic raises funds by flying deep-pocketed travelers around the world on its “specially outfitted” Boeing 757 jet, which features “comfortable VIP-style leather seating,” “plush, sleek interior design,” a private chef, and a “dedicated luggage handler.” The trips, most of which cost roughly $100,000, allow millionaires and billionaires to “fly in exceptional comfort” as they visit “far-flung destinations” and encounter “legendary wildlife”— including the same coral reefs National Geographic says in its pages are dying.
Travelers on one of the 24-day “expeditions” fly nearly 30,000 miles. Planes, on average, produce 53.3 pounds of carbon dioxide per air mile, meaning the trip’s flights would emit more than 1.5 million pounds of carbon dioxide. The average American’s yearly carbon footprint is just 32,000 pounds, meaning the flights in just 24 days generate a carbon footprint equivalent to that of nearly 47 Americans in an entire year.
One of the trips, a $108,000 “Wildlife of the World by Private Jet” tour, takes wealthy attendees to see elephants in Malaysia, mountain gorillas in Rwanda, Bengal tigers in India, and “dazzling marine life” from an “overwater bungalow in the Maldives” before wrapping up in Rome.
National Geographic often laments the “climate change crisis,” which, it says, is causing melting icebergs, coral reef extinction, deadly floods, forest fires, and a rise in mosquito-borne diseases. The media giant argued in September that climate change is “the greatest threat to human health in recorded history.” National Geographic even identifies transportation as one of the largest sources of carbon emissions. …