Inside the Beltway

by William Yeatman on December 15, 2008

President-elect Barack Obama has reportedly settled on his environment and energy team, with the exception of Interior Secretary.  Newspapers, citing sources in the Obama transition team, have reported that Carol M. Browner will be appointed to the unofficial (and hence not subject to Senate confirmation) position of White House energy and global warming czar.  Lisa Jackson, currently serving as Commissioner for Environmental Protection for the State of New Jersey, is Obama’s choice for Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.  For Secretary of Energy, Obama has picked Dr. Steven Chu, a Nobel Prize winner.  And Nancy Sutley, Deputy Mayor of Los Angeles for energy and the environment, will be Chairman of the White House Council on Environmental Quality.

This is a very capable, experienced, and energetic group of people.  Browner headed the EPA during the full eight years of the Clinton-Gore Administration.  She also worked for Al Gore when he was in the Senate and helped with the research and maybe the writing of Earth in the Balance.  Jackson worked at EPA for 16 years in senior enforcement positions in the Washington, DC headquarters and in the New York regional office.  Chu heads the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, which is funded by the Department of Energy.  Before that he was professor of physics at Stanford University, where he won the Nobel in 1997. Sutley has held a number of other appointed positions at the federal, state, and local levels.  She was a senior policy adviser to Browner at EPA and also worked for former California Governor Gray Davis.

It’s too bad they’re so capable, experienced, and energetic because the energy and global warming policies that President-elect Obama wants them to pursue are radical, economically disastrous, and pointless.  As the Washington Post sub-headlined David A. Fahrenthold’s article on Obama’s picks, “Their goals will be radical, but the three officials tapped to lead effort are experienced regulators.”

The fact that three of the four are experienced regulators should not be taken to imply that some or all of them don’t also share Obama’s radical views.  Browner worked closely with Gore, and Chu is a global warming true believer.

The only good news is that the global warming fad has clearly peaked.  Reality is setting in around the world, as temperatures continue flat and efforts to reduce emissions prove costly and ineffective.  Let’s hope that our elected leaders in Congress see what’s happening before they turn off the lights.  

Comments on this entry are closed.

Previous post:

Next post: