In the News
A Cap-and-Trade Warning from Europe
Member of European Parliament Holger Kramer, Washington Times, 17 July 2009
Update on EPA Saga
Sam Kazman, GlobalWarming.org, 17 July 2009
Al and Friends Create a Climate of McCarthyism
Bjorn Lomborg, The Australian, 16 July 2009
A Real Choice on Climate Change: Do Nothing
William Yeatman, TownHall, 16 July 2009
Study Casts Doubt on Alarmist Climate Models
Doyle Rice, USA Today, 16 July 2009
Granting Environmental Indulgences
Robert P. Kerchhoefer, American Spectator, 15 July 2009
California’s Global Warming Policy Is Not One To Follow
Nick Loris, The Foundry, 14 July 2009
The Cap-and-Trade Dead End
Sarah Palin, Washington Post, 14 July 2009
Cap-and-Trade Bill Ineffective
Kathryn Gaines, Human Events, 13 July 2009
“The Cheaper the Energy, the Better”
Julian Simon (from 1993), reprinted by MasterResource.org, 13 July 2009
John Holdren: Margaret Sanger Redux?
Michelle Malkin, MichelleMalkin.com, 10 July 2009
News You Can Use
A Real Scientific Consensus
University of Colorado political scientist Roger Pielke, Jr. this week blogged about a recent Pew poll of American scientists showing that 55% identify as Democrats, 32% as Independents, and 6% as Republicans.
Inside the Beltway
Energy-rationing legislation has been moved to the back burner by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and the Obama Administration. The Senate and the House are now concentrating on moving health care “reform” legislation as quickly as they can. The announced goal of having a health care bill passed by the Senate and maybe even the House before the August recess is clearly out of reach, which means that both chambers will still be working on health care in September as well as trying to finish work on various appropriations bills. Reid has told the chairmen of the committees of jurisdiction that they should have their pieces of comprehensive energy-rationing legislation ready by 28th September. That doesn’t mean that Reid will bring the bill to the floor in October, but rather that he will then be ready to bring it to the floor if and when sixty votes in favor can be assembled.
This slippage in the schedule is due I think mostly to the public reaction to passage of the Waxman-Markey bill in the House. The House Democratic leadership had to rush the bill to the House floor and pass it before people could find out what’s in it. But word started to get out quite quickly. I have heard several reports that quite a few Members who voted for Waxman-Markey were given hostile receptions by voters in their districts over the Fourth of July recess. A few at least are being hammered. Senators naturally hear about how voters are reacting in their States, and so it’s not surprising that several Senators are sounding less supportive of cap-and-trade than they did in June 2008 when they voted for the Lieberman-Warner cap-and-trade bill. In recent days, Senators Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) and Evan Bayh (D-Ind.) have expressed their reservations about voting for cap-and-trade again. Senators Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Byron Dorgan (D-ND) voted against Lieberman-Warner, but were considered possible yes votes this year. Both have already announced that they oppose anything resembling Waxman-Markey.
It’s much too early to conclude that cap-and-trade is dead in the water, but it looks to be swimming against a fairly strong current.
Across the States
Citing uncompetitive business conditions (read: high energy prices), Toyota signaled this week that it plans to stop manufacturing cars in California, according to Henry Payne at Planet Gore. This follows General Motors’ announcement last month that it would pull out of the NUMMI plant in Fremont which it has jointly operated with Toyota since 1984. Approximately five thousand workers will lose their jobs if Toyota closes the Fremont plant. California’s unemployment rate is already above 12% and still climbing. Bills have quickly been introduced in the state legislature to provide tax breaks to Toyota to keep the plant open.
Given the state’s huge budget deficit, it’s not clear how they can pay for millions of dollars of tax breaks or whether the tax breaks would make up for other anti-business policies soon coming into force. A study by the Public Utilities Commission released last month estimated that the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard-a law that forces consumers to buy more expensive “green” energy-will raise electricity prices 25% by 2020. Although Californians continue to buy cars and trucks (1.4 million in 2008), Fremont is the last plant in California that produces automobiles. Toyota and General Motors may be getting out just in time.
Around the World
Obama’s Climate “Solution”: Pay China?
Rapidly developing countries are projected to account for the preponderance of future increases in global greenhouse gas emissions, but they have a moral right to grow their economies unencumbered by expensive emissions controls. U.S President Barack Obama seems to have a “solution”: Send China taxpayer money. During bilateral talks in China this week, Gary Locke, Obama’s Secretary of Commerce, said that, “It’s important that those who consume the products being made all around the world to the benefit of America-and it’s our own consumption activity that’s causing the emission of greenhouse gases, then quite frankly Americans need to pay for that,” as reported by Reuters. The Obama administration is asking a lot of the taxpayer-the International Energy Agency estimates that it would cost $45 trillion to “green” the global economy. I wonder if China will lend us the money.
UK’s Economic Suicide: It Could Happen Here.
The United Kingdom’s Labor Government this week unveiled a Renewable Energy Strategy and Low Carbon White Paper, which sets out how each sector of the economy will help to meet the overall target of a 34 per cent cut in CO2 emissions by 2020. Peter Odell, professor of international energy studies at Erasmus University, Rotterdam, told Reuters that “The targets the UK is setting are almost impossible to meet and they are being developed at a cost that is going to affect consumer prices significantly.” At the same time that the Labor Party announced its green goals, the wind manufacturer Vestas closed a turbine factory in Newport, Isle of Wight, in order to move production overseas to China, according to The Times.