Archive for the 'Energy Chaos' Category

Desperate Greens Make Desperate Claims

September 1, 2010

by Steven Milloy
September 1, 2010, Human Events

As the chances of a cap-and-trade bill recede in the 111th Congress, expect the increasingly desperate greens to amp up their gloom-and-doom rhetoric—as they already have.

Amid Al Gore’s recent concession speech to his zombie followers, for example, he apparently couldn’t help himself from linking every recent bad weather event he could think of with global warming—from floods in Nashville and Pakistan to the recent heat wave and forest fires in Russia.

Before that, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) took the opportunity of an ongoing East Coast heat wave to proclaim the current decade to be the hottest on record and to proclaim that global warming is “undeniable.”

Then there was the recent Environmental Defense Fund claim that global warming is going to wreck Mexican agriculture and increase illegal immigration by almost 7 million by 2070.
No doubt before this Congress is over, we will be subjected to even more extreme claims, although I can’t imagine what scary scenario the greens could conjure up that they haven’t tried before.

One would have thought that Al Gore had learned his lesson about blaming bad weather on climate change when a British judge ruled in 2007 that his movie, An Inconvenient Truth, couldn’t be shown to British school children without a disclaimer about its many egregious errors (amounting to about 99% of the science presented in the film). One of the judicially noticed errors that Gore made was attributing individual weather events and natural disasters (like Hurricane Katrina) to climate change.

Regardless of how climate changes—and it will continue change even if humans magically vanished from the planet and atmospheric carbon dioxide levels return to the alarmist ideal of 350 parts per million—there will always be bad weather and natural disasters in whatever unpredictable proportion and frequency nature dictates.

As to the NOAA claim that now is the hottest era since recordkeeping began, let’s first keep in mind that both nature and humans began recordkeeping long before NOAA and we know that the period known as the Medieval Optimum (about 1,000 years ago when the Vikings tilled Greenland without the help of John Deere) was as warm if not warmer than today.

Moreover, even NOAA should know that the Northern Hemisphere has been warming (thankfully) for about 200 years since the end of a very cold 400-year period in history known as the Little Ice Age. Yes, so it’s been almost continually warming since the early 1800s—and the early 2000’s are the warmest decade? NOAA has a tremendous grasp on the obvious.

The agency, of course, would have us believe that this warming trend is due to man-made emissions of greenhouse gases. The problem with that notion is that it’s not clear in any record anywhere that manmade CO2 emissions correlate with global temperature change. Since 1995, in fact, there has been no significant warming of average global temperature while atmospheric CO2 levels have increased by more than 10%.

Not only has there been no warming since 1995, but it’s likely the alarmist-made temperature record is actually showing more warming than is actually occurring. Between temperature measurement stations being located on heat-retaining airport runways and other urban heat islands, and the Climate-gate mafia gradually removing cooler, rural weather stations from their data gathering, it must be really embarrassing for the alarmists to have to lie and cheat to keep the data from showing the real-life slight cooling that in all likelihood is actually occurring.

What about the supposed global warming-induced wave of Mexican illegals? Let’s just say that warming temperatures have tended to increase agricultural productivity by lengthening growing seasons. Moreover, any potential warming caused by increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations would likely happen in drier, northern latitudes rather than wetter, more temperate zones where the greater presence of water vapor tends to rob CO2 of the opportunity to cause any warming.

Finally, the greens typically assume that any change in climate is necessarily bad. So far, we only know that cooling is potentially problematic for agricultural production. Climatic warming has yet to be anything but a boon to mankind.

But reality will matter less and less to climate alarmists as their visions of cap-and-trade in this Congress, once a sure bet, fade away. Keep that in mind as you read the climate-related news this fall.

Mr. Milloy is the founder and publisher of JunkScience.com. His columns and op-ed pieces have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Financial Times, and Los Angeles Times. He is the author of “Green Hell,” a new book from Regnery Publishing.

Kerry-Lieberman’s Great American Rip-off

May 13, 2010

By Steve Milloy
The Daily Caller, May 13, 2010

There are only three things you need to know about the Kerry-Lieberman cap-and-trade bill that was released Wednesday—it will accomplish nothing for the environment; it will cost a lot of money and it will financially enrich and politically empower a host of scoundrels.

Regardless of what you think about manmade carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, it is undeniable that the emissions reductions contemplated by Kerry-Lieberman don’t amount to a hill of beans. The goal of Kerry-Lieberman, like the goal of the House-passed Waxman-Markey bill, is to reduce U.S. carbon dioxide emissions to 17 percent of 2005 levels by 2050.

But rather than such paltry emissions cuts, let’s say that starting next year, we just shut down America—zero emissions—and kept it shut down for the next 100 years. What difference would that make atmosphere-wise?

Roughly speaking, U.S. energy use (at 2005 levels) adds to atmospheric CO2 at a rate of about 1 part per million every three years. So after 100 years, U.S. energy use would add about 33 ppm of CO2 to the atmosphere. Is that a lot?

Well, atmospheric CO2 has increased by over 35 ppm since 1995 without producing any global warming at all—that’s according to IPCC contributor and Captain Climategate himself, the University of East Anglia’s Phil Jones. Moreover, physicists agree that every molecule of CO2 added to the atmosphere has less global warming potential than the molecule that preceded it. So the next 35 ppm of atmospheric CO2 will have less impact than the preceding 35ppm, which had no discernible effect.

None of this is a secret, the EPA did this analysis for itself in 2007.

Back to Kerry-Lieberman, it carbon emissions reduction provisions would obviously be nowhere near as severe as the shuting-down-America-for-100-years-scenario.

So what will Kerry-Lieberman cost us to accomplish nothing?

Based on the Waxman-Markey bill, which Kerry-Lieberman is modeled after, the Brookings Institution (hardly a hotbed of climate skeptics or Chicago-school economic thought) estimated that between 2012 and 2050, mandatory CO2 emission reductions would make energy cost $9 trillion more—this works out to a cost of about $3,100 per year for a family of four.

This of course doesn’t take into account the inflationary aspects of making energy cost more—after all, all goods and services are produced with energy and energy that costs more will necessary inflate the cost of everything. Americans will have a hard time paying these costs given all the jobs that will flee overseas to places like China, India and Mexico where carbon caps won’t exist, and energy and labor prices will be lower.

But surely someone will benefit from Kerry-Lieberman, right? That $9 trillion, after all, must go somewhere.

Sales of permits to emit CO2 will fill federal coffers with more money for politicians to hand out to special interest groups. Many CO2 emission permits will be handed out for free to special interests who will be able to turn around and sell them in the market for guaranteed profits. Wall Street will get to profit from the trading—just assume that every time you switch on a light a bell will ring at Goldman Sachs notifying it of yet more profits from nonproductive financial shenanigans. Al Gore’s venture capital firm of Kleiner Perkins has invested more than a billion dollars in dozens of companies that are Kerry-Lieberman dependent. Talk about Gore-porate greed.

Kerry Lieberman contains a host of mandates and programs for energy efficiency, so-called green technologies and other corporate welfare programs. Companies like GE would profit from electric utilities being forced to buy expensive “renewable” technologies and from consumers being forced to buy more expensive appliances.

Worse than the transfer of wealth from the hard-working to the hardly-working, is the transfer of power from Americans over their own lives and businesses to governmental goons and busy-bodies. The Environmental Protection Agency—the most rogue federal agency of all —would be responsible for administering Kerry-Lieberman. While EPA control over the economy and the power to enforce that control would be immensely expanded, American business and individuals would have essentially the same ability as now to defend themselves against the EPA—pretty much none.

Although Kerry-Lieberman is a loser of a bill for the vast majority of America, we will have our hands full fighting its financial and political beneficiaries. Even if the bill fails to pass before the election, there is talk on Capitol Hill of procedural shenanigans by which a lameduck Congress could pass it regardless of what Americans have to say in November.

Rise up America, while you still can.

Steve Milloy publishes JunkScience.com and is the author of Green Hell: How Environmentalists Plan to Control Your Life and What You Can Do to Stop Them (Regnery 2009).

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2010/05/13/kerry-liebermans-great-american-rip-off/#ixzz0np4oHpUh

Kerry-Lieberman Bill (Full Text)

May 12, 2010

Here’s the Kerry-Lieberman bill… almost 1,000 pages.

Leak of the day! Kerry-Lieberman cap-and-trade bill

May 11, 2010

Most of the world will learn tomorrow about the Kerry-Lieberman cap-and-trade bill.

But you can check out the bill summary and section-by-section analysis today!

Who loves ya baby?

The President’s Oil Drilling Bait-N-Switch

April 1, 2010

By Steve Milloy
Investor’s Business Daily

So President Obama says he’s for more offshore oil drilling. Does he really mean it? Would it matter if he did?

Addressing the latter question first, consider President George W. Bush called for offshore drilling in June 2008, when gasoline prices hit $4 per gallon and Congress was less Democrat-controlled than today.

Nothing happened — well, that’s not exactly true.

Offshore drilling advocates were ecstatic in July 2008 when they thought a deal had been reached with green groups to permit drilling off Santa Barbara, Calif. — the first since the January 1969 oil spill there.

New Hampshire Union Leader editor Andrew Cline gushed in a July 2008 Wall Street Journal op-ed: “When an environmental group formed for the sole purpose of opposing offshore oil drilling warmly embraces a plan to drill off its own coast, you know something important has changed in our culture; Americans have recognized that offshore drilling is largely safe.”

But less than a week later, the greens wrote the Journal to correct the record: “(T)o be accurate, the (op-ed’s) title should have read ‘Environmentalists Secure End to Oil Development’ … The agreement struck … is remarkable because it sets a fixed date for the termination of existing offshore and onshore oil production facilities in Santa Barbara County. We see this agreement as a direct complement to our support for the federal oil moratorium. Just as we need to say ‘no’ to new oil development, we must put an end to existing development if we are to protect our coast from the risks of offshore oil and gas development, and protect society from climate change.”

Despite the “agreement” and approval of offshore drilling by the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors, the greens subsequently got the California State Lands Commission to deny the offshore leases and then, in July 2009, got the California Assembly to block Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s proposal to revive offshore drilling.

Last December, the Obama administration actually granted Shell Oil leases to drill three exploratory wells in Alaska’s Chukchi Sea. But claiming a shoddy approval process, the leases are being challenged by green groups in the enviro-friendly 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Without wondering whether the Obama administration set Shell up for frustration, my money is on the greens in that venue.

The lesson here is that the greens oppose, and will use every tactic possible on the local, state and federal level to prevent, offshore drilling, regardless of what emanates from the Oval Office.

But then, there are many reasons to question the sincerity of Obama’s rhetoric in the first place.

Despite campaign rhetoric about supporting more drilling, last fall the Obama administration canceled drilling leases in Utah previously granted by President Bush.

The leases were denied for the flimsiest reasons, including possible damage to the habitat of the sage grouse and avoiding the dust and noise pollution from drilling.

Next, and most important, President Obama needs both Republican and moderate Democrat support to get a much sought after cap-and-trade bill through the Senate.

Right now, South Carolina’s Lindsey Graham is the only Republican interested in cap-and-trade. He wants to include increased oil and gas production and nuclear power.

President Obama no doubt hopes pro-oil drilling rhetoric will also help him win the support of other Senate swing votes, including Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, and Mary “Louisiana Purchase” Landrieu, D-La.

Finally, while announcing his drilling proposal, Obama spent the bulk of his time talking about how we need to use less oil and wean ourselves off oil altogether.

He spent little time talking about producing more oil. He limited his remarks to a proposal merely for more oil “exploration” — not to increasing production and supply.

Talk is cheap and President Obama knows that. Let’s hope Senate Republicans and moderate Democrats know that too.

False promises about supporting oil drilling are bad enough, but it would be a travesty if they brought cap-and-trade.

• Milloy publishes JunkScience.com and is the author of “Green Hell: How Environmentalists Plan to Control Your Life and What You Can Do to Stop Them.”

Cold freezes wind turbines in Minnesota

January 29, 2010

From KSTP-TV:

“Wind turbines placed in cities across Minnesota to generate power aren’t working because of the cold temperatures.

The Minnesota Municipal Power Association bought 11 turbines for $300,000 each from a company in Palm Springs, Calif.

Special hydraulic fluid designed for colder temperatures was used in the turbines, but it’s not working, so neither are the turbines.

There is a plan to heat the fluid, but officials must find a contractor to do the work.”

Click here for the video.

Feinstein to kill solar projects in CA desert

December 22, 2009

…as predicted in Green Hell and as reported in today’s New York Times:

Senator Dianne Feinstein introduced legislation in Congress on Monday to protect a million acres of the Mojave Desert in California by scuttling some 13 big solar plants and wind farms planned for the region.

So much for “clean energy”…

Boxer resorts to ‘nuclear option’ to ram climate bill through committee

November 5, 2009

What would it take to replace coal in the U.S?

November 3, 2009

From today’s Financial Times, here’s what it would take to replace coal as a fuel for generating electricity:

It would take a massive effort to replace coal production. Peabody Energy, which owns North Antelope and is the world’s largest private sector coal company, says replacing coal would be a gargantuan task. It would require 2,400 times more solar generation, 40 times more wind power, 250 new nuclear plants, almost double the US production of natural gas, 500 hydro plants the size of the Hoover Dam or halving electricity consumption. Even then, the US would have to find a way to meet new demand, given growth forecasts.

The greens’ choice, of course, is the “halving electricity consumption” option. But never in the history of mankind has reduced energy use been associated with social and economic advancement.

Energy sprawl?

August 31, 2009

Watch for the greens to oppose wind, solar and biofuels projects because of the size of the projects’ geographic footprints. The greens call it “energy sprawl.”

The greens prefer energy rationing to renewables. They may use the term “efficiency,” but like “sustainable,” it’s merely a euphemism for “no growth.”

Click here for a Nature Conservancy study entitled “Energy Sprawl or Energy Efficiency: Climate Policy Impacts on Natural Habitat for the United States of America.”