Cooler Heads Digest 24 June 2011


The Heartland Institute's Sixth International Conference on Climate Change will be held in Washington, DC, on June 30 - July 1, 2011. Visit the event's web site at for more information or to make your reservations.

In the News

New England's Renewable Energy Mandate: Reality Anyone?
Lisa Linowes,, 24 June 2011

Oil release: Slick move or pandering?
Darren Goode, Politico, 23 June 2011

California Bunker Fuel Regulations Spur Shift in Shipping Routes
Marc Scribner,, 23 June 2011

The House Will Vote To Bring Back the Bulb
Henry Payne, The Michigan View, 22 June 2011

Supremes Retreat from Climate Panic
Steve Milloy, The Washington Times, 22 June 2011

Climate of Denial
Al Gore, Rolling Stone Politics, 22 June 2011

Gore's Rolling Stone Denier Diatribe
Anthony Watts,, 22 June 2011

That Footnote in Yesterday's Global Warming Ruling
Sam Kazman,, 21 June 2011

What's All The Fracking Fuss About?
Larry Bell, Forbes, 21 June 2011

'Fracking' Disclosure to Rise
Ben Casselman, The Wall Street Journal, 19 June 2011

News You Can Use

Lawsuit Seeks Ethics Records for NASA's Hansen

Chris Horner filed a lawsuit this week on behalf of the American Tradition Institute seeking all ethics records related to Dr. James Hansen's lucrative global warming activism outside of NASA. NASA has refused to comply with a Freedom of Information Act request made in January for the records.

Inside the Beltway
Myron Ebell

Obama Raids Oil Reserve, But Still Blocks Producing More

Secretary of Energy Steven Chu announced on Thursday that the federal government would release 30 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in order to counteract supply disruptions in the global oil market.  In addition, the other member nations of the International Energy Agency would release another thirty million barrels. 

Thirty million barrels is the largest single release in the history of the SPR, but is insignificant compared to total global daily consumption of roughly 80 million barrels.  The Washington Post noted in an editorial on Friday that the crisis the Obama Administration is trying to deal with is that  "President Obama's re-election prospects will be harmed if national discontent over high gasoline prices continues.  The oil release could be seen as a way for the president to take credit for gas prices that are falling anyway."

Rory Cooper at the Heritage Foundation's Foundry discusses what a stupid idea this is and how it fits in with all of President Obama's other phony, counter-productive energy policies.  Instead of tapping the SPR, why doesn't the President announce that the federal government is opening federal lands and offshore areas to new oil and gas exploration?  That would increase global oil production and lower gasoline prices now and over the long term.  The reason is because President Obama and his Administration favor much higher gas prices.  The SPR release simply helps delay implementation of his policies until after the 2012 election.  

Supreme Court Dismisses Global Warming Suit

The Supreme Court on Monday ruled unanimously in the case of AEP v. Connecticut that plaintiffs could not file suit against major emitters of greenhouse gas emissions as a public nuisance under common law.  That's the good news.  The bad news is that the reason why they cannot do so is that federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions by the federal government pre-empts common law suits. 

The Obama Administration's Environmental Protection Agency is moving full speed ahead to do just that using the Clean Air Act.  But at least the Court has recognized that this is a political issue that should be resolved by the Congress and the President and not by the courts.

Steve Milloy of also notes in a column in the Washington Times that the opinion written by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg takes an agnostic position on climate science. "The Court, we caution, endorses no particular view of the complicated issues related to carbon dioxide emissions and climate change."  That's a welcome switch from the strong endorsement of global warming alarmist science in the majority opinion in Massachusetts v. EPA.  That 5-4 decision in 2007 allowed the EPA to regulate greenhouse gas emissions using the Clean Air Act if they wanted to.

More Jump Off the Boondoggle Bandwagon

Senators Richard Burr (R-NC) and Robert Menendez (D-NJ) are planning to introduce their version of the T. Boone Pickens Earmark bill next week.  Rep. John Sullivan (R-Okla.) released a list of 220 supporters of the Pickens-Your-Pocket Plan, which is H. R. 1380 in the House.  The list is mostly companies, many of them small to medium in size, that hope to benefit from federal subsidies for natural gas vehicles and infrastructure. 

It looks now like a failing effort.  The pushback from free market and conservative groups has made a substantial dent in enthusiasm.  Fourteen Republicans in the House have withdrawn their names as co-sponsors.  That leaves 182 co-sponsors currently. 

Here is the list of the Representatives who have gotten off the Boonedoggle Bandwagon: Steve Pearce (R-NM), Todd Akin (R-Mo), Glenn Thompson (R-Penna), Tim Griffin (R-Ark), Cory Gardner (R-Colo), Scott Tipton (R-Colo), Mike Coffman (R-Colo), Larry Bucshon (R-Ind), John Kline (R-Minn), Mike Kelly (R-Penna), Scott Rigell (R-Va), Blake Farenthold (R-Tex), Richard Nugent (R-Fla), and Joseph Pitts (R-Penna).

Across the States

Texas Passes 'Fracking' Disclosure Bill

This week Texas passed a hydraulic fracturing ("fracking") disclosure bill, which will disclose the chemicals used in the process online beginning July 1, 2012. The legislation, supported by industry, hopes to ease consumer fears over the chemicals used in the fracking process. These chemicals make up 1% of the fluid used to fracture shale, and are included to help lubrication and kill bacterial growth.

Around the World

Another Year, Another Failed Climate Conference

A two week long meeting of parties to the United Nations Framework Conference on Climate Change (UNFCCC) ended June 17, without reaching any breakthroughs in negotiations, such as an extension of the Kyoto Protocol set to expire in 2012. The UNFCCC will meet again in Durban, South Africa this November.

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,