May 2010

CEI Weekly is a compilation of articles and blog posts from CEI’s fellows and associates sent out via e-mail every Friday. Also included in the Weekly newsletter is a brief description of CEI’s weekly podcast and a feature on a major CEI breakthrough made during the week. To sign up for CEI Weekly, go to

CEI Weekly

May 28, 2010

>>CEI Sues NASA to Uncover Key Global Warming Docs

CEI is suing NASA in federal court! We have asked the court to order NASA – which has evaded our Freedom of Information Act requests for three years – to turn over documents related to global warming activities undertaken by federal employees. Chris Horner, along with the law firm Gibson, Dunn and Crutcher, is leading the charge to determine whether NASA facilities and staff were employed to push a specific policy agenda. As Congress ponders legislation that would increase the price of energy, thereby creating a massive new tax on Americans, it is vital that the general public know the extent to which the government’s own scientists have been fueling the alarmist political agenda while ostensibly being paid by taxpayers for impartial climate research. The text of CEI’s court filing is here (PDF). The Washington Times covered our lawsuit in a front page story, which can be read here.

>>Shaping the Debate

Kerry-Lieberman plan has ‘something to harm everyone’and lacks bipartisan support.

Myron Ebell’s quote in The Orange County Register

Regarding climate change, Kerry should heed science

William Yeatman’s letter in The Hill

Liberate to stimulate – Live in the UK!

Iain Murrary’s op-ed in The Examiner Opinion Zone

Pests over people

William Yeatman’s op-ed in The Washington Times

Cuccinelli Is Following the Law; Mann Up, UVa

Chris Horner’s op-ed in The Richmond Times-Dispatch

John Kerry* Imitates the Onion

William Yeatman cited in The Wall Street Journal

The Other Blumenthal Scandal

CEI cited in The Wall Street Journal

Outlook for broadband policy and net neutrality grim

Wayne Crews’ quote in San Jose Mercury News

>>Best of the Blogs

CEI Statement on Senate Passage of Restoring American Financial Stability Act

by John Berlau

Senate Passes Financial “Reform” Bill, 59-39; Will Wipe Out Jobs and Increase Credit Card Costs

by Hans Bader

In Letter and Spirit: Equal Treatment Under the Law

by Angela Logomasini

>>LibertyWeek Podcast

Episode 94: The Nanny State Diaries

Richard Morrison and Jeremy Lott welcome guests Marc Scribner, William Yeatman, Lee Doren, and Angela Logomasini to episode 94. We tackle politics in the Aloha state, freedom of information at the University of Virginia, Bureaucrash’s best and brightest, and the attack of the nanny state.

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Charles Huang
Web and Media Associate
Competitive Enterprise Institute

In The Washington Post, Robert Bryce debunks five myths about green energy: it won’t create jobs, won’t help the environment, and won’t make America less dependent on despotic foreign regimes.

The $800 billion stimulus package is using taxpayer subsidies to replace U.S. jobs with foreign green jobs. It is also destroying jobs in America’s export sector.

The global warming legislation backed by President Obama would also drive jobs overseas, since it would impose a costly cap-and-trade carbon rationing scheme on American industry, while leaving foreign plants operated by multinational corporations unregulated.  That’s one reason why many big companies with plants overseas are lobbying for the global-warming legislation, which would give them an advantage over competitors that make their products largely in America.

Although Obama and other backers of this “cap-and-trade” concept claim it will cut greenhouse gas emissions, it may perversely increase them by driving industry overseas to places with fewer environmental regulations, resulting in dirtier air, and damage to forests and water supplies.   It would enrich politically-connected corporations, and result in massive destruction of the world’s forests.   By expanding ethanol subsidies and mandates, it would cause enormous “damage to water supplies, soil health and air quality.” Ethanol subsidies have already resulted in forests being destroyed in the Third World.

The Washington Examiner earlier explained how the global-warming bill backed by Obama will lead to deforestation, and thus increase greenhouse gas emissions in the long run.  Obama’s so-called “cap-and-trade” bill is full of pay-offs for special interests.

Such cap-and-trade energy rationing schemes would lead to big tax increases, administration officials privately have conceded, even though they publicly claim otherwise.  “Officials at the Treasury Department think cap-and-trade legislation would cost taxpayers hundreds of billion in taxes, according to internal documents circulated within the agency and provided to The Washington Times” by CEI.  It could raise household taxes by $1761 per year, equivalent to a 15 percent tax increase.   It would also result in “loss of steel, paper, aluminum, chemical, and cement manufacturing jobs.”

Obama earlier admitted that “under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket,” since its costs would be passed “on to consumers.”

Citizens would be wise not to trust Obama’s utopian claims about mythical green jobs, given that the foreign green jobs programs he seeks to imitate have completely failed.  Obama’s past claims about job-creation have turned out to be false. Obama falsely claimed that the $787 billion stimulus package was needed to prevent “irreversible decline,” but the Congressional Budget Office admitted that it would actually shrink the economy “in the long run”.  Unemployment has skyrocketed past European levels, as big-spending countries have fared worse than thrifty ones.  As the Examiner notes, “If his stimulus program was approved, Obama promised, unemployment would not go above 8 percent . . . The reality is that it passed 10.3 percent.”  In 2008, Obama promised a “net spending cut,” but as soon as he was elected, he proposed massive spending increases.

In the News

Energy Regulation in the States: A Wakeup Call
Daniel Simmons,, 28 May 2010

It’s Not a Good Season for Al Gore’s Fan Club
Mark Landsbaum, Orange Punch, 27 May 2010

Lost in the Gulf: Perspective
Ron Ross, American Spectator, 27 May 2010

Climategate and the Scientific Elite
Iain Murray, National Review, 26 May 2010

NASA Accused of Climategate Stalling
Stephen Dinan, Washington Times, 26 May 2010

Push To Balance Climate Debate in Classroom Heats up in Colorado
Nancy Lofholm, Denver Post, 26 May 2010

Americans Are Becoming Global Warming Skeptics
Mary Kate Cary, US News & World Report, 26 May 2010

The Green Dog Isn’t Barking at the NYT
Chris Horner,, 24 May 2010

Obama’s Choice: Pests over People
William Yeatman, Washington Times, 24 May 2010

Europe’s Climate Chief under Pressure over ‘Missing’ Emissions Traders
Felicity Carus, Guardian, 24 May 2010

News You Can Use

Climategate Is Changing Public Perception of Global Warming

  • In April, a Rasmussen poll showed more than 40 percent of voters say global warming is not serious, which is a new high
  • A survey in February by the BBC found that only 26 percent of Britons believed that “climate change is happening and is now established as largely manmade,” down from 41 percent in November 2009.
  • A poll conducted for the German magazine Der Spiegel in March found that 42 percent of Germans feared global warming, down from 62 percent four years earlier.

Inside the Beltway

Myron Ebell

Murkowski Resolution Vote Set for 10th June

A vote on the Senate floor on Senator Lisa Murkowski’s (R-Alaska) resolution of disapproval of the EPA’s endangerment finding was delayed once again this week, but a definite date has now been set.  Senator Murkowski obtained a unanimous consent agreement to hold the vote on S. J. Res. 26 on Thursday, 10th June.

My CEI colleague Marlo Lewis’s latest article on why the endangerment finding should be overturned was published on Pajamas Media this week. Americans for Prosperity’s Phil Kerpen also wrote an excellent article in support of the Murkowski Resolution on Fox Forum. Those wishing to contact their Senators in support of the resolution may do so at Freedom Action.

Protesters, described as Tea Party activists, rallied in front of Senator Jay Rockefeller’s (D-WV) office in Charleston this week in favor of the Murkowski resolution.  Senator Rockefeller quickly released a statement that said, “Senator Murkowski and I have been working to find a way to suspend EPA climate regulations because we believe that Congress – not an unelected federal agency – should decide these enormous economic issues.”  Of course, Rockefeller, has his own bill to delay EPA regulations for two years, but it sounds like he is now leaning toward voting for the Murkowski resolution.

Casey and Carper Plan to Thwart Murkowski Resolution

Senators Bob Casey (D-Penna.) and Tom Carper (D-Del.) are putting together legislation designed to defeat the Murkowski resolution.  Their plan is to legislate the EPA’s proposed tailoring rule that exempts small sources of greenhouse gas emissions from regulation under the Clean Air Act (at least for a few years).  The tailoring rule as issued by EPA is likely to be overturned in federal court simply because the Clean Air Act doesn’t give EPA the flexibility to regulate some sources and not others.  The Act states that sources emitting more than 250 tons per year of the regulated pollutant are to be regulated.  Not many sources emit more than 250 tons of air pollutants such as sulfur dioxide, but millions of sources produce more than 250 tons of carbon dioxide a year.

By enacting the tailoring rule, Casey and Carper can argue that they are protecting millions of small businesses and farms while still retaining regulation of greenhouse gases.  This might appeal to Senators in the middle who favor government control of energy use, but realize that doing so using the Clean Air Act is going to lead to a regulatory trainwreck.  However, enacting the tailoring rule would also have the effect of enacting the endangerment finding and the Clean Air Act regulations that follow from it.  This would quash the lawsuits that have been filed challenging the endangerment finding.

There have been rumors that Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) would like to attach the Casey-Carper language to a bill on the Senate floor as soon as possible.  However, it now looks as if no bill to which Casey-Carper would be a germane amendment will come to the floor before the 10th June vote on the Murkowski resolution.  Thus if the Murkowski resolution passes, the Senate will be unlikely to pass Casey-Carper as well.

Across the States


In an effort to help close a $1.2 billion budget deficit, the Oklahoma legislature this week passed S.B. 1267, which would suspend 30 state credits, including one for wind power generators. According to Chuck Hodge, the Vice President of DMI Industries, Oklahoma’s only wind power manufacturer, S.B. 1267 would cause wind developers to avoid the State, which means that this legislation is doubly good for Oklahomans: It would help cut the state’s deficit, and it would spare electricity consumers from expensive and unreliable wind power.

Climategate Update

Last Friday, the Competitive Enterprise Institute filed a request seeking records from the University of Virginia under that state’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). In particular, CEI wants to know why UVA is resisting the request by Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli for the files of former Associate Professor Michael E. Mann, author of the debunked “hockey stick” global temperature reconstruction, at the same time that the University is complying with a FOIA request from Greenpeace for the files of former Professor Patrick Michaels, a prominent skeptic of catastrophic climate change. AG Cuccinelli has begun an investigation of possible misuse of state funds by Mann. To learn more, read this piece by CEI’s Chris Horner in Sunday’s Richmond Times-Dispatch.

This week, CEI  filed a lawsuit to force NASA to produce records related to last year’s “ClimateGate” scandal. The lawsuit arises out of three CEI Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, initiated in August 2007 and originally seeking internal documents about NASA improperly boosting U.S. temperature data in this decade.  Five months after the first request, CEI sought documents concerning Dr. Gavin Schmidt, a taxpayer-funded NASA researcher who spends working hours running and writing for a third-party website ( that was created to defend the now-debunked “Hockey Stick” temperature graph. After CEI submitted this FOIA request, timestamps were retroactively removed from Real Climate posts.  CEI is presenting the Court with original website postings that establish how NASA facilities and staff, at taxpayer expense, are being employed to push a specific policy agenda. Click here to read the legal brief.

A Kerry Kerfuffle

Last week, Senator John Kerry wrote a fact-free opinion piece in The Hill claiming that global warming is a clear and present danger to American national security. To set the record straight, CEI’s William Yeatman wrote a letter to The Hill detailing Kerry’s exaggerations and misstatements. Clearly, the letter got under the Senator’s skin, because within hours, the Senator published a response in the Huffington Post, in which the Senator opted for ad hominem attacks rather than explain the shoddy reasoning behind his original opinion piece. Kerry’s tortured response, in turn, drew the attention of the Wall Street Journal’s James Taranto, who wrote a very witty rebuttal, with a particular focus on the Senator’s hypocritical relationship with military authority.

The Cooler Heads Digest is the weekly e-mail publication of the Cooler Heads Coalition. For the latest news and commentary check out the Coalition’s website,

Hosts Richard Morrison and Jeremy Lott welcome guest William Yeatman to Episode 94 of the LibertyWeek podcast. We examine Chris Horner’s recent freedom of information requests to the University of Virginia, over key Climategate figure Michael Mann. Segment starts approximately 5 minutes in.

The $800 billion stimulus package is shipping American jobs overseas.  More than 79 percent of “green jobs” funding under the stimulus package went to foreign firms.  Meanwhile, to pay for the stimulus package, the government borrowed a huge amount of money from the American people, money that would otherwise have been spent on American products, or been invested in America’s companies.

The stimulus package has also destroyed thousands of jobs in America’s export sector by triggering trade wars that America lost.  It also subsidized countless examples of government waste.

Spain’s “green jobs” program, a model for Obama’s green-jobs and global-warming programs, has turned out to be a complete bust, destroying jobs and contributing to Spain’s skyrocketing government deficit.  (Earlier, Obama’s green jobs czar, Van Jones, resigned over his 9/11 conspiracy theories.  He was hired by Obama despite his long history of Marxism and racism, arrest record, and glorification of a convicted murderer.)

The Washington Examiner earlier explained how the global-warming bill backed by Obama will lead to deforestation, and thus increase greenhouse gas emissions in the long run.  Obama’s so-called “cap-and-trade” bill is full of pay-offs for special interests.  Obama once admitted that under his cap-and-trade scheme, electricity and utility bills would “skyrocket” and coal-fed power plants would go “bankrupt.”  Treasury Department analysts estimated it could increase taxes on the average American household by $1761 per year.  The bill contains environmentally-harmful provisions, such as massive ethanol subsidies, which will result in “damage to water supplies, soil health and air quality.” Ethanol subsidies have resulted in forests being destroyed in the Third World, and caused famines that have killed countless people in the world’s poorest countries.

The cap-and-trade global-warming tax is yet another violation of Obama’s campaign promise not to raise taxes on anyone making less than $250,000 a year.  Obama has admitted that its cost will be passed “on to consumers,” like middle-class homeowners and motorists.

“Nearly two-thirds of Americans do not believe the $787 billion stimulus package the president passed last year has helped create jobs, according to a new Pew Research Center poll.”

As the Washington Examiner notes, “a recent survey of business economists showed they didn’t think the stimulus was creating jobs, either.”  President Obama falsely claimed that virtually all economists supported his stimulus package, but this was patently untrue at the time he made this claim, when at least 200 economists publicly opposed it, and it  is even more untrue now.

Obama falsely claimed that the $787 billion stimulus package was needed to prevent “irreversible decline,” but the Congressional Budget Office admitted that it would actually shrink the economy “in the long run”.  The stimulus package has since destroyed thousands of jobs in America’s export sector, and subsidized countless examples of government waste and corruption.

Unemployment has skyrocketed past European levels, as big-spending countries have fared worse than thrifty ones.  As the Examiner notes, “If his stimulus program was approved, Obama promised, unemployment would not go above 8 percent . . . The reality is that it passed 10.3 percent.”

Nobel Prize-winning economist Gary Becker says that Obama’s policies are delaying economic recovery.

“How is stimulus money allocated? Unemployment isn’t a factor, but politics is,” found George Mason University researcher Veronique de Rugy in a recent study.

Districts where people are struggling and unemployment is high are not receiving any more money than those in which unemployment is low, even though a stated purpose of the $800 billion stimulus package was to help the unemployed.  But politics mattered in doling out federal funds.  And “Democratic districts also received two-and-a-half times more stimulus dollars than Republican districts.”

There are three trillion dollars in tax increases in Obama’s proposed budget, yet it would still borrow 42 cents on the dollar, resulting in colossal deficits.

Obama’s policies would raise the national debt by $9.7 trillion, noted the Congressional Budget Office.

Earlier, one of Obama’s own advisers worried that the “barrage of tax increases” in his budgets could harm the economy and prevent a “sustained” economic recovery.

In 2008, Obama promised a “net spending cut,” but as soon as he was elected, he proposed massive spending increases.

In the News

States Divided Over New EPA Rules
Shannon Goessling, Washington Times, 21 May 2010

Cap-and-Trade Magic Show
James Valvo, Washington Times, 21 May 2010

Inequitable in Ecuador
Quin Hillyer, American Spectator, 21 May 2010

Electric Dreamin’
Henry Payne, Planet Gore, 21 May 2010

Scientists Scramble To Address Radio Campaign
Stephen Dinan, Washington Times, 20 May 2010

The Green Jobs Myth
Investor’s Business Daily editorial, 20 May 2010

The EPA’s Shocking Power Grab
George Allen & Marlo Lewis, Forbes, 18 May 2010

UVA’s Dishonorable Double Standard
Barbara Hollingsworth, Washington Examiner, 18 May 2010

Climate Policy Needs a Team “B”
David Schnare,, 18 May 2010

News You Can Use

Maybe It’s the Sun

Despite the absence of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions, Jupiter’s climate changed drastically this month when a giant belt of clouds circling the planet mysteriously disappeared. As noted by the BlogProf, this follows recent discoveries that Triton, a moon of Neptune, is rapidly warming and that Mars’s polar ice caps are evaporating.

Inside the Beltway

Myron Ebell

Murkowski Resolution Debate Heats Up

In a story in Environment and Energy Daily (reprinted on the NY Times’s web site), Darren Samuelsohn reports that Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) predicts the Murkowski resolution of disapproval of the EPA’s endangerment finding will pass the Senate when it is brought to the floor for a vote next week.  “I think it will pass,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.). “There are a lot of people who will be in the camp of, ‘We should do it, not the EPA.'”

I think that is a sensible observation.  Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) is among those who favor reducing greenhouse gas emissions, but who do not want it to be done by using the Clean Air Act.  That is because she has concluded that applying the Clean Air Act to carbon dioxide emissions will result in a regulatory nightmare and wreck the economy (which is also sensible).  This conclusion is gaining ground as Members of Congress look at the issue.  Therefore, I do not think the Senate vote is merely “symbolic,” as political commentator Norman Ornstein of the American Enterprise Institute told Evan Lehmann and Jessica Leber of Climate Wire (also reprinted on the New York Times’s web site).

My guess is that Murkowski’s resolution, S. J. Res. 26, will pass narrowly and that pressure will then build on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to schedule a House vote.  One of the interesting results of the congressional primary elections so far is that strong opponents of cap-and-trade in both parties are doing well.  Steve Milloy of has noticed the trend, as has the Huffington Post.  Democratic House Members worried about their re-election may plead with Pelosi that they need a vote against EPA regulation to take back home. An indication that Pelosi may already be feeling some heat is that this week she said, as reported by Bob Cusack and Ben Geman in the Hill, that Congress should legislate global warming policy rather than let EPA regulate.

This week nineteen free market and conservative non-profit groups sent a joint letter to Senators in support of the Murkowski resolution.  It was written and organized by my CEI colleague, Marlo Lewis.  Marlo and former Virginia Governor and Senator George Allen also published an excellent op-ed on the Forbes Magazine web site that explains why stopping EPA from using the Clean Air Act to regulate carbon dioxide emissions is a constitutional as well as economic imperative.

Several environmental groups have been running ads against the Murkowski resolution.  Americans for Prosperity has held a bunch of rallies in support of the resolution in the States of key Senators over the past few weeks.  This week Freedom Action (of which I am director) started running radio ads in six States-Virginia, West Virginia, North Dakota, New Mexico, Montana, New Mexico, and Alaska-which tie the ClimateGate scandal to the EPA Endangerment Finding and urge listeners to e-mail their Senators.

Obama Wants To Raise CAFE Again

President Barack Obama today issued a memorandum directing federal agencies to develop tougher new fuel economy standards for cars and light trucks beginning in the 2017 model year and to develop fuel economy standards for medium and big trucks for the first time. This follows the new standards announced in April that will begin with the 2012 model year.  It’s not clear to me that consumers are going to want to buy the models that the Congress and the Obama Administration have decreed will be offered in 2012, but the automakers are now resigned to taking orders from their federal masters rather than their customers. My prediction is that another massive bailout of the automakers is inevitable.

“Invaluable” Climate Reports Released

The National Academies of Science this week released three reports prepared by the National Research Council that endorse the scientific case for global warming alarmism and claim that it is urgent that the federal government adopt mandatory reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.

Former New York Times environment reporter Andrew Revkin on his New York Times blog called the reports “invaluable.”  Yeah, I’ve got a lot of invaluable junk stored in my basement, too, that perhaps I can interest Andy in buying.

The fact is that these three reports are put-up jobs arranged by NAS President Ralph Cicerone to counter the damage done by the Climategate scandal.  I have seen enough of Dr. Cicerone in action to know that he is a political conman first and a scientist second.  I wouldn’t trust him to give a straight answer on the time of day.  The carefully-chosen members of the NRC committees that wrote the reports are mostly committed advocates of alarmism and energy rationing policies.  Mark Landsbaum of the Orange County Register agrees.

4th International Conference on Climate Change

I was one of 700 people attending the Heartland Institute’s fourth International Conference on Climate Change this week.  As with the first three conferences, Joe Bast, James Taylor, Nikki Comerford, and the Heartland staff put together a well-run conference with many outstanding speakers.  All of the keynote and panel presentations are available on video here.

There are a number of famous names among the speakers who gave excellent talks-Richard Lindzen, Bob Carter, Steve McIntyre, Nils-Axel Morner, Ian Plimer, and others whose talks I missed (which is the problem with having four concurrent sessions).  One less famous speaker, whose talk I recommend watching, is Willis Eschenbach.

Across the States

West Virginia

On Tuesday night, the Environmental Protection Agency held a public hearing in Charleston, West Virginia, on its proposed veto of a Clean Water Act permit for Spruce Fork 1 coal mine in Logan County, which is already operating. The EPA is exercising this authority for the first time ever, in order to protect an insect that isn’t even an endangered species. More than 800 people attended, and scores of miners, small businessmen, and community activists gave testimony urging the EPA to spare their livelihoods. The EPA’s veto would result in the direct loss of 250 jobs paying an average of $62,000, and would also deprive the Logan County school system of more than $17 million annually.

Around the World


Since becoming President, Barrack Obama has cited the “success” of Spain’s green energy policies eight times, most recently in Illinois, three weeks ago. So it was major news when Professor Gabriel Calzada, an economist at King Juan Carlos University, released a study in 2009 concluding that Spain’s ultra-wasteful green energy subsidies were killing 2.2 jobs for every job they created. After CEI’s Chris Horner broke news of the study in the U.S., the Obama administration commissioned a hatchet job analysis to discredit Calzada’s work. This week, Professor Calzada was vindicated when a government report was leaked conceding that the green energy subsidies are unsustainable. The headline of the Spanish daily La Gaceta says it all: “Spain Admits That the Green Economy as Sold to Obama Is a Disaster.”


Bloomberg reported this week that Christiana Figueres, a Costa Rican diplomat, will succeed Yvo de Boer as the head of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change on July 1st. Soon after the announcement, she told reporters that she is confident that a legally binding, international greenhouse gas emissions reductions treaty can be reached in 3 years. We’ve heard that before. In 2007, de Boer championed the “Bali Roadmap,” which was supposed to lead to a climate treaty at the 15th Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC last December in Copenhagen, Denmark. Of course, the Copenhagen Climate Conference foundered amid recriminations over how to share the $45 trillion price tag for a global climate treaty.

The Cooler Heads Digest is the weekly e-mail publication of the Cooler Heads Coalition. For the latest news and commentary check out the Coalition’s website,

Nineteen free-market groups have signed a letter urging Senators to support S. J. Res. 26, the bipartisan legislation sponsored by Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) to overturn the legal force and effect of EPA’s endangerment finding with respect to greenhouse gases (GHGs).

If allowed to stand, the endangerment finding will trigger a regulatory cascade, making carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions “subject to regulation” under several Clean Air Act (CAA) programs. America could end up with a regulatory regime more costly than any climate bill or treaty the Senate has declined to pass or ratify, yet without the people’s representatives ever voting on it.

Under Senate rules, the vote must take place before June 7th, and it is expected to be very close.

Click here to view the letter.

Click here for commentary on S.J. Res. 26 by CEI’s Marlo Lewis and former Virginia Governor George Allen.

Click here to listen to a nation-wide radio campaign in support of S.J. Res. 26 launched by Freedom Action.

Click here to urge your Senators to vote for S.J. Res. 26.

After 7 months of negotiations, Senators John Kerry and Joseph Lieberman last week unveiled a major climate bill to a chorus of…silence. On the day after the rollout, the American Power Act failed to make the front page of a single paper with a national scope. The Sunday political talkies also ignored the bill. I didn’t hear a single mention of the American Power Act on Fox News Sunday, ABC’s This Week, NBC’s Meet the Press, the McLaughlin Group, or the Chris Matthews Show.

What gives? The mainstream media LOVES global warming as an issue, because it’s divisive and it’s yellow. So why would they ignore it? The only explanation I can think of is that the media believes the bill is dead. My only evidence is anecdotal. Last Thursday I did a taped interview with a very pro-cap-and-trade reporter from Al Jezeera, and the first thing out of his mouth was, “So this bill is dead, right?” I’m not so sanguine, because I once thought the same thing about health care “reform.” Nonetheless, the media’s evident apathy is curious.

In the News

How To Buy Corporate Support for Kerry-Lieberman
Chris Horner, Planet Gore, 14 May 2010

David Harsanyi, Denver Post, 14 May 2010

Renewables Versus Conventional
John Droz, Jr., American Spectator, 14 May 2010

The Bootleggers Are the Baptists’ Last Hope
Iain Murray, Washington Examiner, 13 May 2010

Thomas Friedman, Phone Home
William Yeatman & Jeremy Lott, Real Clear Markets, 12 May 2010

A Climate Dud
Chip Knappenberger,, 12 May 2010

The Price of Wind
Wall Street Journal editorial, 12 May 2010

Kerry-(Graham)-Lieberman: A Monstrous Payoff To Big Businesses
Myron Ebell, New York Times, 10 May 2010

Shelving of California’s Climate Law a Lot Closer
Tom Tanton, OC Register, 10 May 2010

Sale of Chicago Climate Exchange Reinforces Weak Carbon Market
Joel Kirkland, ClimateWire, 3 May 2010

News You Can Use

Costs & Benefits of Kerry-Lieberman American Power Act

Potential cost: $70 billion to $145 billion a year
Benefit: By 2100, Kerry-Lieberman would reduce global temperatures by .2 degrees Fahrenheit, if the mandatory emissions targets are achieved (and the sensitivity of the climate to CO2 levels is as high as the IPCC claims)

Inside the Beltway

Myron Ebell

EPA Releases “Tailoring Rule”

The EPA released the final version of its “tailoring rule” this week, but it hasn’t been published in the Federal Register yet.  The tailoring rule ignores the clear language of the Clean Air Act that stationary sources that emit more than 250 tons per year of the regulated pollutant must be regulated.  EPA proposes to regulate sources above 75,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions per year, at least for the first few years. CEI’s Marlo Lewis explains the tailoring rule and its consequences here and here.

At last: Kerry and Lieberman Introduce Their Bill

Senators John Kerry (D-Mass.) and Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.) on Wednesday finally released a draft energy-rationing bill.  It’s 987 pages.  The text and short and longer summaries may be found here. They boasted that it has wide industry support and have made no secret of the fact that large parts of it were written by the companies that support it.  Several heads of big companies stood with Kerry and Lieberman at their press conference, although BP and Goldman Sachs were not there.

The targets and timetables for reducing greenhouse gas emissions are similar to those in the House-passed Waxman-Markey bill, H. R. 2454, but the methods to achieve those reductions are somewhat different.  Kerry and Lieberman begin their bill with nuclear loan guarantees and offshore oil provisions.  There is a cap-and-trade system, but it applies only to electric utilities.  The price of ration coupons has lower and upper limits.

The bill summary claims that, “Consumers will come out on top.  The American Power Act sends two-thirds of all revenues not dedicated to reducing our nation’s deficit back to consumers from day one.”  I wonder how long that promise will be kept by the Congress.

I don’t think the bill is going anywhere and said so here.  Surprisingly, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who helped write the bill but pulled out three weeks ago, sent out a press release that makes a similar prediction. Kerry claims, correctly in my view, that it is not an environmental bill.  Rather it is a collection of payoffs to big companies to pass a bill that will put the federal government in charge of controlling how much and what type of energy people can use.

Barrasso Offers Amendment to Ban Carbon Derivatives

Senator John Barrasso (R-Wyoming) this week filed an amendment to the financial regulation bill currently being debated on the Senate floor that would ban trading in carbon derivatives if a mandatory cap-and-trade scheme is enacted.  The text of Senate amendment 3940 may be found here.  Those who want to e-mail their Senators in support of (or opposition to) the amendment may do so at Freedom Action.

Unless Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) manages to cut off debate on the financial regulation bill, S. 3217, it is expected that Senator Barrasso will offer his amendment early next week.  It should attract strong support from the left as well as the right.  The purpose of the amendment is to try to limit opportunities for market manipulation and fraud if an artificial market is created by government in carbon credits.  EUROPOL has said that up to 90% of the volume of trades in the European Union’s Emissions Trading Scheme involve fraudulent activity.  That’s not because there is anything wrong with derivatives.  In fact, various derivatives are necessary for the efficient working of markets.  It’s because carbon credits are phony pieces of paper.  Anything that can be done to limit this colossal scam should be done.

Update on Murkowski Resolution

Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) is nearing D-Day to bring her resolution disapproving the EPA’s finding that greenhouse gas emissions endanger public health and welfare to the Senate floor for a vote.  I expect her to do so late next week or perhaps early in the week after next.  Under the Congressional Review Act, she needs only fifty-one votes.  The resolution, S. J. Res. 26, has forty-one sponsors, including three Democrats.

As I said last week, I think it’s going to be a very close vote.  Those who want to e-mail their Senators in support of (or opposition to) the Murkowski resolution may do so at Freedom Action.

If the Senate passes the resolution, then the House could take it up at any time.  Clearly, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is dead set against allowing a vote on the resolution.  And if the House passed it, then President Obama could veto it.  However, pressure continues to build in the House to do something.  The latest step in that direction is a bill introduced this week by Representatives Dennis Rehberg (R-Mont.) and Stephanie Herseth Sandlin (D-SD), which would prohibit any regulation of greenhouse gases under existing laws.  This is similar to an amendment that Senator George Voinovich (R-Ohio) released a few weeks ago.  The text of H. R. 5924 may be found here.

Rehberg and Herseth Sandlin are reacting to the Bureau of Land Management’s decision last month to suspend oil and gas leases in their States while it considers the effects of more oil and gas production on global warming.  BLM’s action is just the tip of the iceberg, so I expect many more Members of Congress will soon become interested in the Murkowski resolution and the Rehberg-Herseth Sandlin bill.

Around the World

Iain Murray, from The Corner

UK’s New Anti-Energy Policy

The new coalition government in the United Kingdom has made public its list of environmental policies, and it reads like a national charter for economic suicide.  The Rt. Hon. Chris Huhne, MP, a Liberal Democrat on the left of that party, has been made Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, although it is quite clear that the order of priority is the reverse of that.  Mr Huhne has been an environmental activist for many years and is therefore unlikely to listen to voices telling him that the lights will go out and energy prices rise if he implements these policies fully.  Meanwhile, the new government’s hostility to air travel is obvious, something that will no doubt dismay Britain’s tourist industry.  The Taxpayers’ Alliance, one of several groups in Britain that understands the implications of these policies, has issued an initial reaction that would be devastating if anyone in the new government was willing to read it.  Unfortunately, the environment section is such a cornerstone of the coalition agreement that it will likely be clung to as long as the coalition has life. Click here to read the agreement in full.

The Cooler Heads Digest is the weekly e-mail publication of the Cooler Heads Coalition. For the latest news and commentary check out the Coalition’s website,

Richard Morrison and Marc Scribner welcome Energy Policy Analyst William Yeatman to Episode 92 of the LibertyWeek podcast in which we discuss the prospects for John Kerry and Joe Lieberman’s latest incarnation of cap and trade legislation.