Cooler Heads Digest 18 December 2009

by William Yeatman on December 18, 2009

In the News

How To Manufacture a Climate Crisis
Pat Michaels, Wall Street Journal, 18 December 2009

Russian Temps Turn Heat Up on Warmers
Sean Higgins, Investors Business Daily, 18 December 2009

The Crack-Up in Copenhagen
Myron Ebell, FoxNews.com, 17 December 2009

Obama and the Senate in a Danish Standoff
Iain Murray, Science, 17 December 2009

Why Climategate Just Got Much Bigger
James Delingpole, Telegraph, 17 December 2009

A Green Woodstock
William Yeatman, Washington Times, 16 December 2009

Coping With Copenhagen
Jennifer Harper, Washington Times, 16 December 2009

Greenpeace Ambushed by Skeptics
Baltimore Examiner
, 16 December 2009

Hide the Decline…and More
David Harsayni, Denver Post, 16 December 2009

Video: Skeptic Assaulted by Enviros at Copenhagen
Fox News
, 15 December 2009

Beware Those Trying To Save Us
Ben Stein, American Spectator, 15 December 2009

Fire and Ice in the Global Warming Debate
Myron Ebell, Washington Post, 11 December 2009

Beyond Debate?
Martin Cohen, Times Higher Education, 10 December 2009

News You Can Use

Poll: Support for Obama’s Green Policies Is Plummeting

According to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, only 45 percent of Americans approve of Obama’s work on the global warming issue, with 39 percent of respondents disapproving. Last April, 61% of Americans approved of Obama’s green policies.

Inside the Beltway

Julie Walsh

Opposition to Endangerment Gathers Steam in Congress

On Monday at 3:30pm Senator Lisa Murkowski will introduce a Disapproval Resolution to overturn EPA’s recently finalized “endangerment” finding on greenhouse gases. Then the Environment and Public Works Committee will have 20 calendar days to vote on it or it proceeds to the Senate floor, if Murkowski has 30 signatures to discharge it from the committee. Representative Joe Barton, ranking member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, will also introduce a Disapproval Resolution in the House. Of course if it passes both houses, the President would veto it.

A frequently used reason to pass a cap and trade bill is that otherwise EPA will regulate. As Senator Kerry recently said to Congressional Quarterly, “Months ago, Lindsey Graham and I warned that if Congress does not pass legislation dealing with climate change, the administration will use the Environmental Protection Agency to impose new regulations.”  However, Obama’s EPA still intends to regulate even if Congress does a pass a cap and trade bill. EPA’s Lisa Jackson recently said this: “I do not believe this is an ‘either-or’ proposition. I actually see this as a ‘both-and.’ I believe the Clean Air Act can complement legislative efforts.” This Disapproval Resolution therefore makes clear that “the EPA’s decision appears to allow members of Congress to deflect blame toward the administration. But this is a charade. In fact, by not acting to rescind the EPA’s power to regulate greenhouse gases, Congress is completely responsible for whatever action EPA takes.”

Around the World

Myron Ebell (from Copenhagen)

Obama Cometh

For a moment it appeared that President Obama was bringing a dose of reality to Hopenchangen. He noted that the nations of the world have been negotiating on global warming for approaching twenty years and don’t have much to show for it. That is absolutely correct. But I didn’t hear the President draw the correct conclusions from that observation. The “process” keeps rolling along and promise after promise is made. But promises are cheap and actual reductions in emissions are proving much more expensive than forecast by the econometric models. At some point, some major leader is going to have to point that out. President Obama it appears is happy to join the EU fantasy club and be a jolly good fellow rather than spoil the party with some harsh truths.

As for what President Obama’s appearance might do to change the outcome of COP-15, I think it makes it puts pressure on ministers to reach some rough sketch of a deal on Saturday. What he said at the private meeting at a hotel with twenty-some leaders before his speech will have much more effect on the content of the deal agreed to than the vague platitudes in his speech. But what they come up with won’t be much different than earlier COPs, which as I wrote at the beginning of COP-15 always end in total triumph. Weary negotiators emerge after all night negotiations with tears in their eyes to announce that after immense efforts we have managed (barely–you can’t imagine how close we were to giving up) to pull the world back from the brink. They announce the deal: “We have all agreed that in the very near future we will all agree on all outstanding issues.” For whatever it’s worth, President Obama should take the credit.

To read more of Myron’s reports from Copenhagen, click here.

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