Cooler Heads Digest 28 May 2010

by William Yeatman on May 28, 2010

in Blog, Cooler Heads Digest

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,

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