Cooler Heads Digest 20 November 2015

20 November 2015


The Cooler Heads Digest will not be published on 27th November.  The next issue will be dated 4th December.  Happy Thanksgiving!

In the News

Senator Manchin Shoots Hole Through EPA Power Plant Rule  
Marlo Lewis,, 20 November 2015

How To Halt the President’s Climate Change Ploy
Chris Horner, Washington Times, 19 November 2015

Pay Up, and Up, and Up: Developing Nations Set to Make Demands at Paris Climate Talks 
Senator Mike Lee and Representative Mike Kelly, National Review, 19 November 2015

Bob Murray’s Lawsuit To Stop ‘War on Coal’ Could Derail Obama’s Environmental Agenda 
Ben Wolfgang, Washington Times, 19 November 2015

How Green Megadonors Built a Bogus Campus Anti-Carbon Drive
Tom Pyle, New York Post, 19 November 2015

House Hearing Witness: On the “Clean Power” Plan, EPA’s Cost Estimate Is an Underestimate 
Kate Scanlon, Daily Signal, 19 November 2015

Lomborg Pushes Back Against Joe Romm’s Screed 
Bjorn Lomborg, Watts Up With That, 17 November 2015

Video: Senator Mike Lee and Panel Discussion—A Preview of the Paris Climate Change Conference 
Heritage Foundation and Competitive Enterprise Institute, 4 November 2015

Video: All day conference on Preparing for Paris: What To Expect From the UN’s 2015 Climate Conference 
Cato Institute, 30 October 2015

Video: Panel Discussion on the House’s Role in the Paris Climate Treaty 
Cooler Heads Coalition and Heritage Foundation, House Science Committee Hearing Room, 26 October 2015

Video: Panel Discussion on Legal and Constitutional Issues in the Paris Climate Treaty 
Cooler Heads Coalition and Heritage Foundation, Senate EPW Committee Hearing Room, 19 October 2015

News You Can Use
COP-21: The Show Must Go On

Soon after the terrorist attacks in Paris on 13th November, for which the Islamic State in the Levant has claimed credit, the French government announced that COP-21, the twenty-first Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, would go on as scheduled in Paris from 30th November to 11th December.  However, outside rallies and marches organized by environmental pressure groups would be cancelled.

The decision that the show must go on suits the Obama Administration.  According to a compilation by Jerome Hudson published on Breitbart, the President and his officials have stated at least twenty-two times that climate change presents a greater threat than extremist Islamic terrorism.  Senator Bernie Sanders (Independent Socialist-Vt.) went one better in the Democratic presidential debate when he said: “In fact, climate change is directly related to the growth of terrorism.” 

Inside the Beltway
Myron Ebell

Senate Passes Resolutions Blocking EPA's Greenhouse Gas Rules

The Senate on 17th November passed resolutions of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act of the EPA’s greenhouse gas rules for new and existing power plants by 52-46 votes.  The two roll call votes on Senate Joint Resolution 23 and S. J. Res. 24 were identical. 

Forty-nine Republicans were joined by three Democrats in voting Yes.  The Democrats were Senators Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, and Joe Donnelly of Indiana.  Forty-three Democrats were joined by three Republicans in voting No.  The Republicans were Senators Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, Mark Kirk of Illinois, and Susan Collins of Maine.  Two Republicans missed both votes: Senators Marco Rubio of Florida and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina.

The only real surprise was that Senator Mark Kirk voted No.  He had told Politico in late October that he would vote for both resolutions.  Apparently, a few hundred thousand dollars of broadcast ads in Illinois sponsored by environmental pressure groups changed his mind.  The Hill newspaper reported that the Natural Resources Defense Council sent out a press release attacking Kirk’s votes, but then had to send out a corrected press release that he had indeed voted against the EPA’s energy-rationing rules.  

On the House side, the Energy and Commerce Committee marked up its versions of the two resolutions of disapproval.  House Joint Resolution 71, which would block the greenhouse gas rule for new power plants, was passed on a 28 to 20 vote.  H. J. Res. 72, which would block the rule for existing power plants, was passed on a 28 to 21 vote

It is expected that the House will hold floor votes on both resolutions soon after they return from the week-long Thanksgiving recess on 30th November, which happens to be the day President Barack Obama will join other national leaders in Paris for a pep rally to kick off the twenty-first Conference of the Parties of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.  COP-21 is scheduled to conclude on 11th December with agreement on a new Paris climate treaty.

The EPA’s power plant rules constitute the largest greenhouse gas emissions reductions in the U. S.’s Intended Nationally Determined Contribution to the Paris treaty.  Although President Obama will veto both resolutions, passage by the Senate and House will put the international negotiators at COP-21 on notice that the administration’s promises to cut emissions are just hot air. 

House Science Committee Chairman Lamar Smith: Whistleblowers Confirm Suspicions About Shoddy Science at NOAA 

The chairman of the House Science Committee, Representative Lamar Smith (R-Tex.) on 18th November sent Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker a letter that follows up on a 4th November letter to NOAA Administrator Kathryn Sullivan concerning NOAA’s failure to comply with a committee subpoena.  In his more recent letter, Chairman Smith reveals that whistleblowers at NOAA have confirmed that a temperature data study by NOAA’s Thomas R. Karl was “rushed to publication despite the concerns and objections of a number of NOAA scientists, ignoring established and standard NOAA scientific processes and potentially violating NOAA’s scientific integrity policies.”  

The phony study by Karl et al published in Science last June re-analyzes global surface temperature data and finds that there has been no pause or hiatus in global warming over the past two decades.  Here is a thorough debunking of the Karl paper published in Watts Up With That the day the study was published. There have been many more debunkings since then.  

Around the World
Myron Ebell

Congress Pushes Back on Paris Climate Treaty

Senate and House leaders this week launched several efforts to undermine President Obama’s negotiating position going into final negotiations over the Paris Climate Treaty.   

Thirty-seven Republican Senators on 19th November sent a letter to President Barack Obama that states: “We pledge that Congress will not allow U.S. taxpayer dollars to go to the Green Climate Fund until the forthcoming international climate agreement is submitted to the Senate for its constitutional advice and consent.”  The letter was organized by Senator John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee’s subcommittee that has jurisdiction over international environmental agreements, and Senator James M. Inhofe (R-Okla.), chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee.

Senator Mike Lee (R-Ut.) on 19th February introduced a resolution, Senate Joint Resolution 25, along with 30 co-sponsors that makes the legal and constitutional case that any agreement reached at Paris is a treaty and therefore must be submitted to the Senate for its advice and consent.  A similar resolution will be introduced in the House by Representatives Mike Kelly (R-Penna.) and Bill Flores (R-Tex.) and a long list of co-sponsors.  Lee and Kelly published an op-ed that explains their resolution here.  

Also on 19th November, Senators Inhofe, Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), and Joe Manchin (D-WV) introduced a shorter resolution that warns international negotiators that any climate agreement “shall have no force or effect in the United States and no funds shall be authorized in support of that protocol, amendment, extension or other agreement, including for the Green Climate Fund, until that protocol, amendment, extension or other agreement has been submitted to the Senate for advice and consent.” 

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,