Be nice to the tree huggers today: It has been a rough year for the jolly green juggernaut since the last Earth Day, and like something out of The Travels of Sir John Mandeville, the extreme edge of the environmental movement has been throwing itself beneath the wheels of climate change.

With the COP16 climate-change summit underway in Cancun, the scaremongering over global warming is reaching preposterous new heights as so-called “leaders” warn of humanity’s impending doom — unless, of course, all nations agree to global carbon taxes and other statist measures.

The Heartland Institute's fourth International Conference on Climate Change is scheduled to take place in Chicago May 16-18 and will feature more than 27 foreign experts from a dozen nations.

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson attracted international attention when, having apparently become bored waiting for the messy process of representative government to weigh the merits of the Obama administration’s “cap and trade” scheme, simply declared the release of carbon dioxide to be a dangerous emission.

At last December’s UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, former Vice President Al Gore shrilly proclaimed that “The entire polar ice cap ... could be completely ice free within the next five to seven years.” As implausible as Gore’s claim already was at the time, recent developments in the arctic have only served to make the fear of an ice-free polar zone all the more absurd.