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Entries in EPA (505)

Monday
Nov242014

CEI Today: EPA's renewable fuel news, Obama's NLRB nominees, online gambling ban update, and media bias against free speech 

Monday, Nov. 24, 2014
In the News Today

 

EPA'S RENEWABLE FUEL STANDARD - MARLO LEWIS

Renewable Fuel Standard: EPA Retreats from Cutbacks

News reports Friday revealed that EPA will pull back from its November 2013 proposal to reduce this year’s Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) blending targets. By law, EPA was supposed to finalize the 2014 targets in November 2013. However, a final rule establishing RFS targets for 2014 is not expected until 2015. EPA’s more-than-year-long delay in finalizing the 2014 targets reveals what may be the most damning unintended consequence yet: market unpredictability.
> Read more

> Interview Marlo Lewis

 

OBAMA NLRB NOMINATIONS - ALOYSIUS HOGAN

 

The Hill: An NLRB prescription for trouble

 

President Obama's nominations to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) have proven a prescription for trouble, and Lauren McFerran is no exception. Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) promptly whisked McFerran to her examination — Thursday's confirmation hearing — after her nomination last week. But Republicans would be wise to conduct a thorough examination and not rush the process. > Read more


> Interview Aloysius Hogan
 

ONLINE GAMBLING BAN - MICHELLE MINTON

Adelson's Online Gambling Ban Losing Political Steam


It was a bad week for Sheldon Adelson. The billionaire casino owner has said he’ll spend whatever it takes to stop the spread of legal online gambling in the U.S. This week, however, the prospects for Adelson’s bill dimmed significantly as leaders in the conservative and free market movements began to speak out against the measure. > Read more

 

> Related: coalition letter


> Interview Michelle Minton
 

MEDIA BIAS AGAINST FREE SPEECH - HANS BADER

Taxpayer-Funded Green Ministries in Prince George's County Violate the Constitution
 
Reporters like separation of church and state, unless it’s progressives violating it. Then, they lose interest in the concept. A recent Washington Post story cheerily reported on churches getting exemptions from a state-mandated stormwater fee (Maryland’s “rain tax”) in exchange for taking “green” positions, in the progressive bastion of Prince George’s County, Maryland. The story did so without even mentioning the serious issues that raises under the Establishment Clause and the First Amendment. > Read more

DEC. 5 - REPEAL DAY EVENT

81st Anniversary Celebration of Repeal Day: Prohibition Still Doesn’t Work

 

On December 5, 1933, the 21st Amendment to the Constitution was ratified, supposedly ending our nation’s failed experiment with prohibitionism. Yet, 81 years later, modern-day prohibitionists continue to deny the laws of supply and demand, attempting to control what individuals can choose to put into their own bodies.

 

Featuring Walter Olson, Senior Fellow, Center for Constitutional Studies, Cato Institute & Editor, Overlawyered.com (@walterolson); Stacia Cosner, Deputy Director, Students for Sensible Drug Policy (@TheStacia); Michelle Minton, Fellow in Consumer Policy Studies, Competitive Enterprise Institute (@michelleminton); moderated by Kat Murti, Digital Marketing Manager, Cato Institute (@KatMurti). > Register
 

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CEI is a non-profit, non-partisan public policy group dedicated to the principles of free enterprise and limited government.  For more information about CEI, please visit our website, cei.org.  Follow CEI on Twitter! Twitter.com/ceidotorg.

 

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Mark Will-Weber, author of Mint Juleps with Teddy Roosevelt: The Complete History of Presidential Drinking.
 
Jay Richards, co-author of The Hobbit Party: The Vision of Freedom That Tolkien Got, and the West Forgot.


 

CEI President Lawson Bader

@libertynkilts
 

If it walks like a lame duck





 

Saturday
Nov222014

Cooler Heads Digest 21 November 2014 

21 November 2014

Announcements

  • The Cooler Heads Digest will not be published next week due to the Thanksgiving Holiday. We will return on 5 December. Happy Thanksgiving!
  • The comment period for EPA’s proposed “Clean Power” Plan ends 1 December. Click here to submit a comment.

In the News

Renewable Fuel Standard: EPA Retreats from Cutbacks
Marlo Lewis, GlobalWarming.org, 21 November 2014

U.S. Oil Imports Fell as Output Rose in October
Mark Shenk, Bloomberg, 20 November 2014

Fossil Fuel Industries: Time to Stand Tall! (Book Review of The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels)
Erin Conners, Master Resource, 20 November 2014

Wind Energy Industry Gambles with Taxpayer Chip
Ernest Istook, Washington Times, 19 November 2014

New Polar Bear Study Is Junk Science
Susan Crockford, Polar Bear Science, 19 November 2014

Report: EPA Paid Employees $1 Million While They Were on Leave…Sometimes for Years
Michael Bastasch, Daily Caller, 19 November 2014

For Once, a Court Sided with People Rather Than “Threatened” Rodents
Ron Arnold, The Daily Signal, 18 November 2014

Spin Alert: Despite What DOE Says, Its Loans Are Not Making Money
Donald Marron, Forbes, 17 November 2014

News You Can Use
All 50 States Hit Freezing

Reuters reported this week that Tuesday was the coldest November morning across the U.S. since 1976, as temperatures in at least one location in all 50 States dipped to freezing or below.  

Inside the Beltway
Myron Ebell

Landrieu Fails To Find Sixtieth Vote for Keystone Pipeline

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) did allow a floor vote on Tuesday, 18th November, on a bill to permit the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline from Alberta’s oil sands to Gulf refineries, but Senator Mary Landrieu (D-La.) failed to find the sixtieth vote necessary to break the Democrats’ filibuster.  All 45 Republicans voted for the bill, but only 14 Democrats.

Landrieu thus failed to demonstrate her clout as the outgoing chairman of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, which cannot help her uphill effort to win re-election to the Senate in her 6th December runoff with Rep. Bill Cassidy (R-La.).  It also shows that 41 of her Democratic colleagues are more interested in keeping faith with their environmental billionaire donors than keeping another Democrat in the Senate.  They will have 46 seats in the 114th Congress, which should be enough for the 41 votes needed to block cloture on major Republican legislation.   

Across the States
William Yeatman

New Report Shows State-by-State Energy Costs of EPA’s Clean Power Plan

A report released this week by Energy Ventures Analysis, Inc. estimates that EPA’s proposed Clean Power Plan, in combination with existing agency rules promulgated during the Obama administration, would increase the cost of electricity and natural gas by nearly $300 billion in 2020 compared with 2012. Click here for a State-by-State breakdown of how EPA’s rules would affect your electric and gas bills.

Around the World
Myron Ebell

Obama Pledges $3 billion to Green Climate Fund, Attacks Australian Prime Minister Abbott in Oz

After signing a climate agreement with Chinese president Xi Jinping at the APEC summit meeting held outside Beijing last week, President Barack Obama traveled on to the annual G-20 summit meeting in Brisbane, Australia.  In a side speech at the University of Queensland, Obama pledged $3 billion to the Green Climate Fund and then used the rest of his speech to criticize the Australian government’s climate policies. 

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott as the host of the G-20 meeting tried unsuccessfully to keep climate policy off the agenda and out of the final communique.  And he lost the full support of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who said after Obama announced $3 billion and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced $1.5 billion for the Green Climate Fund that the Canadian government would contribute as well. 

But Abbott has not backed down.  This week he re-iterated his position that the ongoing UN climate negotiations will fail if they put policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions ahead of economic growth. “It's vital that the Paris conference be a success... and for it to be a success, we can't pursue environmental improvements at the expense of economic progress.  We can't reduce emissions in ways which cost jobs because it will fail if that's what we end up trying to do.”

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop also criticized Obama’s speech during an interview on Australian television from New York where she was attending the UN Security Council meeting.  According to the Australian newspaper, American Ambassador to Australia John Berry had strongly warned the White House not to criticize the Abbott government while in Australia.

Green Climate Fund Gets $9.3 Billion in Pledges

The Green Climate Fund came close to its initial goal of $10 billion at a conference of donor nations in Berlin on 20th November.  A total of $9.3 billion has now been pledged.

President Barack Obama got things going earlier in the week at the G20 summit meeting in Australia when he pledged $3 billion.  Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe then pledged $1.5 billion.  In Berlin, new pledges included $1.1 billion from the United Kingdom and smaller amounts from Italy, Finland, New Zealand, Mongolia, and Panama.  A number of other nations have already made commitments. France and Germany are also in the billion dollar club.

The Green Climate Fund (or GCF) was first suggested by then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at the annual UN climate conference in 2009 in Copenhagen and then became the centerpiece of President Obama’s efforts to save the conference from total collapse.  The deal agreed in Copenhagen is that wealthier nations will give a total of $100 billion per annum starting in 2020.  The GCF will give the funds to poorer nations to help them deal with the impacts of climate change and pay for their own climate policies.  $9.3 billion is a start, but it’s far from the $100 billion per year commitment.

President Obama will no doubt try to redirect other foreign aid appropriated by Congress to meet his $3 billion pledge to the GCF.  But Congress controls all appropriations, and the 114th Congress may not agree.  In that case, the President’s pledge will be as empty as his recent climate agreement with Chinese President Xi Jinping.     

Science Update
Marlo Lewis

Google Ends Green Energy Project

During 2007-2011, Google’s RE<C energy innovation center invested heavily in wind, geothermal, and solar technology, hoping to produce a gigwatt of power more cheaply than is possible with coal. The effort failed. Writing in IEEE Spectrum, Google engineers Ross Koningstein and David Fork report that by 2011, “it was clear that RE<C would not be able to deliver a technology that could compete economically with coal, and Google officially ended the initiative....”

“First, renewable energy sources like solar and wind need to get cheap -- not just as cheap as a coal- or natural-gas-fired power plant, but so much cheaper that it makes economic sense to abandon traditional fossil fuels soon. Furthermore, the power system needs to be redesigned so renewable sources, like rooftop solar panels, can be as responsive and useful on the grid as a traditional power plant is now, the engineers wrote.

Second, the world needs as-yet-uninvented technologies to pull CO2 from the atmosphere.”

Then and only then would a zero-carbon system be a “thrifty choice” – a solution the world confidently embraces because it makes people wealthier.

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, www.GlobalWarming.org.

Saturday
Nov082014

Cooler Heads Digest 07 November 2014 

7 November 2014

Announcement

Sixty six groups led by the American Energy Alliance sent a coalition letter this week to Speaker of the House John Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell urging them to oppose the inclusion of the wind production tax credit (PTC) in any lame duck tax extenders package during the remainder of this congressional session. Click here to read the letter.

In the News

Dear GOP: Don’t Rescue Obama Energy Policy with Wind PTC Extension
Robert Bradley, Jr., Master Resource, 7 November 2014

Enough of Big Ethanol Bullying Voters
Nan Swift, Washington Examiner, 7 November 2014

West Virginia’s White, Pro-Coal Democratic Senate Candidate Fared Even Worse Than Obama
David Weigel, Bloomberg, 6 November 2014

GOP Election Rout Delivers Blow to U.S. Leadership Role on Climate Change
John Cushman, Jr., Inside Climate News, 5 November 2014

Obama: Stop Bugging Me About Keystone
Ben Geman, National Journal, 5 November 2014

Sierra Club’s Wacky Take on the Election: Environmentalists Failed Due to “Sinister Voter Suppression Tactics”
William Yeatman, GlobalWarming.org, 5 November 2014

Climate Was Barely a Factor in Midterms
Brad Plumer, Vox, 4 November 2014

The Crazy Reason Two Auto Companies Were Fined $100 Million
Nicolas Loris, Daily Signal, 4 November 2014

News You Can Use
Election’s Biggest Loser: Alarmism

Last week, the Cooler Heads Digest reported on the scores of millions of dollars that green special interests and their billionaire benefactors spent on the midterm elections. Regarding their efforts, this week’s Politico headline delivers the final word: “Tom Steyer, Greens Have Rough Night at the Polls.”

Inside the Beltway
Myron Ebell

Big Green’s $85 Million Fails To Keep Senate under Harry Reid’s Control

Republicans gained at least seven and probably nine Senate seats in the 4th November congressional elections and will take control of the Senate when the 114th Congress is sworn in on 3rd January.  Senator Mitch McConnell, the current minority leader, defeated Alison Lundergan Grimes in Kentucky by 52 to 44% and will become majority leader.  EPA regulations to kill the coal industry were a big issue in the campaign.

House Republicans increased their numbers to between 245 and 250 from 233 in the current Congress.  With several races still to be called, the Republicans could hold more seats in the House of Representatives than at any time since 1929.

Republicans did this despite massive spending by billionaire green activist Tom Steyer and the big environmental pressure groups.  As I reported last week, Big Green spent over $85 million trying to elect global warming alarmists.  They failed miserably.  Their issues did not resonate at all.  As Republican pollster Whit Ayres said, “It is difficult to find an issue that voters place lower on the list than climate change.”

Steyer and leading environmentalists have spent the week trying to explain away how they spent so much and achieved so little. But environmental advocates, such as Brad Plumer writing on Vox, were also quick to acknowledge that the global warming establishment was the biggest loser in the elections. Here’s the good news from Rebecca Leber in the New Republic: “Congratulations, voters.  You just made this climate denier the most powerful Senator on the environment.”  She refers to Senator James M. Inhofe (R-Okla.), who is set to return as chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee.  

In a press conference the day after the election, President Barack Obama admitted, “The Republicans had a good night.”  He then went on to say that he was not planning to make a mid-term course correction or shake up the White House staff, as did Presidents George W. Bush in 2006 and Bill Clinton in 1994.  It’s going to be an interesting two years in Washington, DC. 

Across the States
Myron Ebell

Republicans Make Historic Gains in State Legislatures

The Republican takeover of the Senate was the big story on election night.  A few days to look at the election results at the state level has convinced me that the stunning scope of Republican victories in state legislative races is at least as big a story and will have bigger consequences over time. 

Republicans increased their control of the 98 partisan state legislative bodies (Nebraska’s legislature is non-partisan and unicameral) from 57 to 67 (and after the election, a party switcher gave Republicans control of one more).  Once all the races are called, it is almost certain there will be more Republican state legislators than the previous high of 4001 achieved in 1928.

Democrats lost their majorities in the West Virginia House for the first time since 1931.  West Virginia’s current House of Delegates has 54 Democrats and 47 Republicans.  The new House will have 64 Republicans and 36 Democrats. After Democrats lost seven state Senate seats in West Virginia, a Democratic state senator announced that he would switch parties, which will give Republicans control of the state Senate, again for the first time since 1931.  In New Mexico, Republicans won control of the state House for the first time since 1954. 

Democrats also lost their majorities in the Nevada House and Senate, their Senate majorities in New York, Colorado, Maine, and Washington, and their House majorities in Minnesota and New Hampshire.

Before the election, Republicans controlled both legislative chambers and the governorship in 23 States, Democrats in 13.  Republicans gained complete control in Nevada and Arkansas, but lost it in Pennsylvania (where incumbent Governor Tom Corbett lost) and Alaska (where an independent defeated incumbent Governor Sean Parnell).  Democrats, on the other hand, lost complete control in six States: Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Colorado, Illinois, and West Virginia. 

Thirty-One States Now Have Republican Governors

The biggest surprise on election night was Republican Larry Hogan defeating Democratic Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown for Governor in Maryland.  Republicans Bruce Rauner and Charlie Baker also won surprising victories for Governor in Illinois and Massachusetts. 

Democrat Tom Wolf defeated Republican Governor Tom Corbett in Pennsylvania.  Otherwise, it was a big night for Republicans at the gubernatorial level, who now have thirty-one Governors.

Democrats now have one woman Governor—Maggie Hassan in New Hampshire.  Republicans have three—Susana Martinez in New Mexico, Nikki Haley in South Carolina, and Mary Fallin in Oklahoma.  Democrats have no Hispanic Governors, but Republicans have two—Martinez and Brian Sandoval in Nevada.  Republicans also have two Governors of Asian Indian descent—Haley and Bobby Jindal in Louisiana.  

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, www.GlobalWarming.org.

Friday
Nov072014

ALG's Daily Grind - McConnell: 'We will use the power of the purse' 

6

Nov. 6, 2014

Permission to republish original opeds and cartoons granted.

McConnell: 'We will use the power of the purse'
Incoming Senate Majority Leader: "It takes 60 votes to do a lot of things in the Senate, but there are some things we can do with 51 votes." 

Cartoon: Obama Reacts

Will Obama Regulation Shut Off the Lights?
The Obama Administration and his big money environmental extremist allies lost two Senate seats due to extreme environmentalist overregulation, and it is likely to get worse for the greenies in the next two years.

Stockman: Bill Gross' case for bigger deficits is ludicrous
Former Pimco bond king: ""The real economy needs money printing, yes, but money spending more so, and that must come from the fiscal side — from the dreaded government side — where deficits are anathema and balanced budgets are increasingly in vogue." 

 

 

Wednesday
Nov052014

CEI Today: Voter fraud, illegal volunteering, and EPA's clean power plan 

Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2014
In the News Today

 

VOTER FRAUD - BILL FREZZA

Daily Caller: Can Big Data Help Eliminate Voter Fraud?

Conservatives take it as a matter of faith that voter fraud is rampant. Liberals take it as a matter of faith that concern over fraud is merely a cover for voter suppression. Where does the truth lie? Can we resolve this argument based on the facts? We may soon find out.

In Frederick County, Maryland, an election watchdog group is suing the Old Line State over alleged voter fraud. Another “gotcha” moment for conservatives or proof of voter suppression?
> Read more

> Interview Bill Frezza
 

ILLEGAL VOLUNTEERING - ALOYSIUS HOGAN

Volunteering Violation Vignettes
 

Did you know it is against the law to volunteer for a for-profit business?  > Read more

EPA'S CLEAN POWER PLAN - WILLIAM YEATMAN


Globalwarming.org: EPA’s Clean Power Plan Defies Its Own Regulation


EPA’s greenhouse gas regulation for existing power plants, known as the Clean Power Plan, is off-putting for a number of reasons. For starters, it’s expensive and threatens electric reliability. The regulation, moreover, is an affront to federalism, insofar as it usurps the States long-held, exclusive authority to oversee retail electricity markets. Despite these drawbacks, the rule would in no way impact the climate. > Read more


> Interview William Yeatman
 

Sign Up for the Weekly Cooler Heads Digest!

Every Friday afternoon, we send out an electronic newsletter on the latest energy and environment happenings, known as the Cooler Heads Digest. Sign up today!
 

 

    

 

CEI is a non-profit, non-partisan public policy group dedicated to the principles of free enterprise and limited government.  For more information about CEI, please visit our website, cei.org.  Follow CEI on Twitter! Twitter.com/ceidotorg.

 

CEI’s Battered Business Bureau: The Week in Regulation

In the final week before the midterm election, agencies published new regulations ranging from dairy profits to Japanese oranges. Fittingly, the total number of new regulations on the year also passed the 3,000 mark on Hallow’s Eve.

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