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Entries in Global Warming (329)

Saturday
Aug222015

Cooler Heads Digest 21 August 2015 

21 August 2015

This week is an abridged version of the Digest. We'll be back next week. Thanks!

In the News

Gap Between Obama UN Climate Pledge and CO2 Cuts Gets Bigger
Stephen D. Eule, Institute for 21st Century Energy, 21 August 2015

EPA's Methane Policy: Statistically Trivial for the Planet and Terrible for the Economy
Mark P. Mills, Forbes, 21 August 2015

Heavy Truck Greenhouse Gas Rule: EPA Deflates Climate Impacts, Inflates Significance
Paul C. "Chip" Knappenberger and Patrick Michaels, Cato At Liberty, 20 August 2015

Obama's Clean Power Plan is bad news for California
Tom Tanton and Julian Morris, Orange County Register, 20 August 1015

‘Islamic Declaration on Global Climate Change’ suggests we are going to hell in a handbasket, links climate to Nepal earthquake
Anthony Watts, Watts Up With That, 20 August 2015,

Clean Energy Incentive Program: More Illegality in EPA’s Power Plant Rule
Marlo Lewis, GlobalWarming.Org, 19 August 2015 

MacArthur Foundation doles out $50 million to toward climate change [i.e. to green pressure groups],
Shia Kapos, Crain’s Chicago Business, 19 August 2015

Refrack Resourceship: Why the Carbon-Based Energy Era Is Still Young
Robert L. Bradley, Jr., MasterResource.Org, 17 August 2015

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey asks court to intervene in Clean Power Plan
Sarah Tincher, The State Journal, 14 August 2015, 

Four Big Problems with the Obama Administration’s Climate Change Regulations 
Nicolas Loris, Heritage Foundation Issue Brief #4454, 14 August 2015

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
Jun272015

Cooler Heads Digest 26 June 2015 

26 June 2015

Announcements

  • The Cooler Heads Digest will not be published next week. Happy Independence Day.
  • On Tuesday, 30th June, Noon to 1:30 PM, the Cato Institute will host a talk by Robert Bradley, Jr., editor of Master Resource, on “A History of Free Market Energy Thought.” Cato’s Patrick Michaels will moderate. RSVP or watch online here.

In the News

Apple’s New Top Lobbyist Has Bizarre History of Sock Puppeting
Ken Kurson, New York Observer, 26 June 2015

EPA Chief: Climate Skeptics Are Not “Normal People”
Tom Blumer, News Busters, 25 June 2015

Ozone Triggers Lying, Not Asthma
Steve Milloy, Breitbart, 24 June 2015

In a Shift, Fracking’s Foes Face a Losing Streak
Valerie Richardson, Washington Times, 24 June 2015

Keeping Energy Affordable
Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.), The Hill, 24 June 2015

How the Supreme Court’s Impending Ruling on Utility MACT Might Effect the Clean Power Plan
Mark Drajem, Bloomberg, 24 June 2015

Computer-Aided Sophistry: My Power Point on the Social Cost of Carbon
Marlo Lewis, GlobalWarming.org, 23 June 2015

Study: A Mini Ice Age Heading Our Way
Colin Fernandez, Daily Mail, 23 June 2015

Pope Francis on Climate Change: An Encyclical Failure
James Rust, Master Resource, 23 June 2015

New EPA Truck Regulations Won’t Help the Environment
Nicolas Loris, Daily Signal, 23 June 2015

Top 10 Things I Learned on a Trip to the Bakken Oil Fields
Mark Perry, AEIdeas, 22 June 2015

Auto Industry Over-Regulation Is Setting Us Back
Myron Ebell, Janesville Gazette, 21 June 2015

News You Can Use
Marlo Lewis

Study: Upfront Costs of Energy Efficiency about Twice Actual Savings

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy claims energy-efficiency programs provide States an easy, affordable way to comply with the Clean Power Plan and reduce consumer electric bills at the same time. A new study by UC Berkeley and University of Chicago researchers challenges EPA’s rosy assessment. In a survey of 30,000 households, the authors found –to their surprise – that the upfront costs of home weatherization exceed savings by about two to one. In their words: “The findings suggest that the upfront investment costs are about twice the actual energy savings. Further, the model-projected savings are roughly 2.5 times the actual savings. . . .Even when accounting for the broader societal benefits of energy efficiency investments, the costs still substantially outweigh the benefits; the average rate of return is approximately minus 9.5% annually.”

Inside the Beltway

House Passes Bill To Block EPA Greenhouse Gas Regs, 247-180
Myron Ebell

The House of Representatives on 24th June passed H. R. 2042, the Ratepayer Protection Act, by a vote of 247 to 180.  The bill would block implementation of the Environmental Protection Agency’s regulation of greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants until all judicial review is completed and would also allow state governors to opt out if they determine that the rule would raise electric rates or threaten electric reliability.

Eight Democrats joined 239 Republicans in voting for H. R. 2042, sponsored by Representative Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.), chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee’s energy subcommittee.  Democrats voting Yes were Representatives Brad Ashford (Neb.), Sanford Bishop (Ga.), Andre Carson (Ind.), Henry Cuellar (Tex.), Ann Kirkpatrick (Az.), Collin Peterson (Minn.), Terri Sewell (Ala.), and Kyrsten Sinema (Az.).

Four Republicans and 176 Democrats voted No: Republicans opposed were Representatives Carlos Curbelo (Fla.), Robert Dold (Ill.), Chris Gibson (NY), and Frank LoBiondo (NJ).  Four Democrats and two Republicans did not vote.

Some commentators have said that the vote is meaningless because the Senate is unlikely to muster the sixty votes necessary to pass the bill or something similar and even if it did, President Obama would veto it.  I disagree.  The vote is a strong rebuke to the Obama EPA’s power grab.  It shows that a large majority supports the rider in the House’s Interior-EPA Appropriations bill that would also block the EPA’s power plant regulations.  The Interior-EPA bill reached the House floor this week and will be voted on during the week of 5th July after Congress returns from its Independence Day recess. 

The House vote also provides clear evidence to the international community that the Obama Administration’s commitment made under the forthcoming Paris Accord to reduce emissions by 26-28% below 2005 levels by 2025 has little political support and is therefore unlikely to be achieved.   

RFS Repeal Bill Is Introduced
Marlo Lewis

Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) has introduced S. 1584, a bill to repeal EPA’s renewable fuel standard (RFS) program. A throwback to Soviet-era central planning, the RFS requires refiners, blenders, and fuel importers to sell annually-increasing volumes of biofuels. Sen. Cassidy’s one-page bill would repeal EPA’s statutory authority for the RFS program -- §211(o) of the Clean Air Act -- other related statutory references and authorities, and all associated EPA regulations.

Sen. Cassidy’s web site indicates that a major motivation for the bill is the costly environmental damage inflicted by the RFS on Louisiana tourism, recreation, and fisheries. Most U.S. biofuel is ethanol made from corn starch. Agricultural runoff from RFS-induced corn production expands the Gulf Coast dead zone – an oxygen-depleted area ranging from 5,000 to 6,000 square miles where aquatic life cannot survive.    

Across the States
Myron Ebell

Federal Judge Temporarily Delays BLM’s New Fracking Rule

Federal District Court Judge Scott W. Skavdahl on 23rd June issued a stay that temporarily halts the Bureau of Land Management from implementing a new rule regulating hydraulic fracturing on federal lands. The rule was scheduled to go into effect the next day.

Judge Skavdahl’s reason for the stay was that the BLM had not yet published the official administrative record that includes its responses to public comments and details of how the rule was written.  The judge said that once the administrative record was filed, he would give both sides seven days to respond and then would rule within two weeks on whether to issue an injunction to suspend the rule until litigation is completed.

The judge agreed with the Western Energy Alliance and other plaintiffs that there is credible evidence that the rule could do serious financial harm to oil and gas producers on federal lands.  According to the Casper Star Tribune, “North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem said about 99% of all the wells that would be covered by the federal rule are already regulated by the states.”

Indiana Rejects “Clean Power” Plan

Indiana Governor Mike Pence this week sent an open letter to President Obama informing him that Indiana would not comply with EPA’s “Clean Power” Plan as proposed. In the letter, Pence correctly noted that the “ill-conceived and poorly constructed” regulation exceeds EPA’s authority. Indiana becomes the second State, after Oklahoma, to pre-emptively refuse compliance with the “Clean Power” Plan as proposed.

Science Update
Marlo Lewis

EPA’s Bogus Climate Policy Health Report

EPA this week released Climate Change in the United States: Benefits of Global Action. As summarized by the agency’s press release, the 96-page report “compares two future scenarios: a future with significant global action on climate change, where global warming has been limited to 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit), and a future with no action on climate change (where global temperatures rise 9 degrees Fahrenheit). The report then quantifies the differences in health, infrastructure and ecosystem impacts under the two scenarios, producing estimates of the costs of inaction and the benefits of reducing global GHG emissions.”

Predictably, EPA concludes the costs of “inaction” dramatically outweigh those of “action.” I have not worked through the report in detail, but the key selling points strain credulity.

To begin with, there is no good reason to suppose that, absent “global action,” global temperatures will increase by 9°F (5°C). Over the past 36 years, the lower troposphere (roughly 0-25,000 feet) has warmed at a rate of 0.114°C/decade, according to the latest University of Alabama in Huntsville satellite temperature record (UAH6.0). The 36-year rate is at or below the low end of three of the IPCC’s four global warming projections for the 21st Century, known as representative concentration pathways (RCPs). It’s also right smack dab in the middle of the IPCC’s lowest projection (RCP2.6), which assumes a 70% reduction in cumulative global GHG emissions between 2010 and 2100. The warming rate in recent decades is already as low as EPA assumes is possible only through “global action.”

EPA claims that limiting global warming to 2°C would “avoid an estimated 12,000 deaths annually associated with extreme temperatures in 49 U.S. cities, compared to a future with no reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.” But only about 2,000 U.S. residents die each year from all forms of extreme weather, with about 31% attributed to exposure to extreme heat and 63% attributed to exposure to extreme cold, according to the Centers for Disease Control. So currently about 620 annual U.S. deaths are heat-related, and U.S. heat-related mortality has been declining, decade-by-decade, since the 1960s, despite rising urban summer air temperatures. The reason is people aren’t dumb. When hot weather becomes more frequent they adapt, reducing their vulnerability to hot weather. There is no reason to believe such progress will not continue.

EPA claims global action would “avoid approximately 13,000 deaths in 2050 and 57,000 deaths annually in 2100 from poor air quality.” That is sheer conjecture and unverifiable due to the huge noise-to-signal ratio. The 13,000 deaths EPA claims could be avoided in 2050 is less than one-thousandth of the 56 million deaths worldwide in 2012. Moreover, as EPA surely knows, U.S. air pollution emissions and concentrations keep declining despite global warming. Long before 2100, most of the world’s air pollution problems will likely have been solved absent “global action” on climate change.

Sadly, carbon reduction policies could hold back progress in combating the world’s deadliest air pollution – indoor smoke inhalation in countries that lack access to reliable, affordable, fossil energy.

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.

 

Monday
Jun222015

CEI Today: Ex-Im Bank, the Pope & global warming, chemical regulation, and more 

Monday, June 22, 2015
In the News Today

 

EX-IM BANK - RYAN YOUNG

Reasons to Oppose the Ex-Im Bank, Part 5: Corruption

When government has a lot of money and power, it is natural for people to curry its favor. It is just as natural for those wielding money and power to use it for personal gain. The Export-Import Bank provides numerous real-world examples of this human frailty.  
> Read more 

> Interview Ryan Young
 

THE POPE & GLOBAL WARMING - MYRON EBELL

 

Pope Francis’s Climate Encyclical: Help Poor People by Dismantling Industrial Civilization

The Vatican released Pope Francis’s encyclical on climate change, Laudato Si’, on 18th June.  It is, in general, scientifically ill-informed, economically illiterate, intellectually incoherent, and morally obtuse.
 > Read more


> Interview Myron Ebell
 

CHEMICAL REGULATION - ANGELA LOGOMASINI

TSCA Reform Debate Is Not about Public Safety

Some lawmakers, environmental activists, and local government officials claim that the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) law is not sufficient protect public health. There may be an economic reason to reform this law—to preempt a growing patchwork of nonsensical state-level consumer product regulations—but there’s no legitimate “safety” reason for reform. > Read more

> Interview Angela Logomasini

 

I, WHISKEY: THE SPIRIT OF THE MARKET
OFFICIAL MOVIE TRAILER




Realclearradio.org

Bloomberg Boston
1pm & 7pm ET
Bloomberg San Francisco 10am & 4pm PT

 

    

 

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.

 

THE MAGNIFICENT 7 - 2015 CEI DINNER VIDEO
 


Media Contacts: 202-331-2277
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Christine Hall
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Keara Vickers

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Advancing Capitalism
Business & Gov't
Energy & Environment
Finance & Entrepreneurship
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Human Achievement Hour
Law & Constitution
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Nanny State
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Risk & Consumer Freedom
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Transportation & Infrastructure

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Tuesday
Jun162015

CEI Today: The Pope & global warming, Internet sales tax, Trade, Ex-Im Bank, and more 

Tuesday, June 16, 2015
In the News Today

 

THE POPE & GLOBAL WARMING - FRED L. SMITH, JR.

Forbes: The Pope, Poverty, And Global Warming

The world waits in anticipation as Pope Francis and his advisers finalize an official Vatican statement on climate change and the environment – expected out this week. The Pope is reportedly worried about how climate change might impact the poor, and he is quite right to be concerned. > Read the Forbes commentary

> Interview Fred L. Smith, Jr.

 

INTERNET SALES TAX - JESSICA MELUGIN

 

Latest Internet sales tax bill gives states unprecedented taxing power
 

This week, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) is introducing yet another Internet sales tax bill. Critics of the current system - which requires that a seller have a physical presence, or “nexus,” in the buyer’s state to become subject to the latter state’s sales tax - often call this a tax loophole. In truth, it keeps taxing authorities accountable to those they tax. The seller, not the buyer, is the taxpayer in this online transaction. > Read The Hill commentary
 

> Interview Jessica Melugin
 

AIR TRAVEL PASSENGER CHARGES - MARC SCRIBNER

The Hill: The conservative case for a modernized Passenger Facility Charge

The battle for free market airport reforms has just begun. Congress should do the right thing and raise the cap on the Passenger Facility Charge. > Read The Hill commentary

> Interview Marc Scribner

 

TRADE PROMOTION AUTHORITY - FRAN SMITH

House TPA Rejection Protects the Past at the Expense of the Future
 

The House is poised to vote - again - on Trade Promotion Authority (TPA). Unfortunately, there has been some misinformed criticism, in Congress and elsewhere, of so-called “fast track” legislation. > Read more

> View a recent press conference about the TPA vote


> Interview Fran Smith
 

EX-IM BANK - RYAN YOUNG

 

Reasons to Oppose the Ex-Im Bank, Part 1: It's Pro-Business, Not Pro-Market
 

The upcoming Ex-Im reauthorization vote provides the perfect litmus test for which members of Congress are pro-business, and which are pro-market.  > Read more


> Interview Ryan Young
 

MORE IN THE NEWS...
 

Union Official Time Breeds Corruption

 




Realclearradio.org

Bloomberg Boston
1pm & 7pm ET
Bloomberg San Francisco 10am & 4pm PT

 

    

 

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.

 

 

PC Newsmaker:
Are Streetcars Good For America?

TODAY!
10AM
 


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Business & Gov't
Energy & Environment
Finance & Entrepreneurship
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Tech and Telecom
Trade and International
Transportation & Infrastructure

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Saturday
Jun132015

Cooler Heads Digest 12 June 2015 

12 June 2015

In the News

Scared Witless: Prophets and Profits of Climate Doom
Robert Bradley, Jr., Master Resource, 12 June 2015

Inhofe: “We’re Winning” the Global Warming Debate
Michael Bastasch, Daily Caller, 11 June 2015

Attacks on Skeptics Do a Disservice to Scientists and Their Profession
Anthony J. Sadar, Washington Times, 10 June 2015

Why the Left Needs Climate Change
Steven Hayward, Forbes, 9 June 2015

Ex-Im Is Not the Key to Nuclear Industry’s Competitiveness
Jack Spencer & Katie Tubb, The Daily Signal, 9 June 2015

A Climate Campaigner (Bill McKibben) and Climate Change Critic (Anthony Watts) Meet in a Bar…
Andrew Revkin, Dot Earth, 8 June 2015

Global Warming: The Theory That Predicts Nothing and Explains Everything
Robert Tracinski, The Federalist, 8 June 2015

NOAA Plays “Hide the Pause”
James Delingpole, Big Government, 5 June 2015

Harvard Researchers Caught Lying To Boost EPA Climate Rule
Steve Milloy, Breitbart, 4 June 2015

News You Can Use
Study: EPA’s Clean Power Plan's Disparate Impact on Minorities

According to a study published this week by the National Black Chamber of Commerce, EPA’s Clean Power Plan would cause cumulative job losses for blacks and Hispanics of roughly 7 million and 12 million, respectively, over the next 20 years. Over the same time period, black families can expect their annual incomes to fall by $455, while Hispanics will take home $515 less per year.

Inside the Beltway
William Yeatman

AEI Carbon Tax Event: Niskanen Center Puts Its Cards on the Table (and it’s a terrible hand)

On Wednesday afternoon, the American Enterprise Institute hosted a debate on the merits of a carbon tax between Niskanen Center’s Jerry Taylor and AEI’s Benjamin Zycher. Video is available here.

For some time now, Taylor has been trying to convince conservatives to embrace a carbon tax. Originally, his case for the carbon tax was based on a hypothetical political compromise. That is, he urged conservatives to embrace a carbon tax as a bargaining chip that could be traded for a relaxation of EPA’s climate regulations. There are a lot of holes in this thesis, and Taylor’s line of reasoning has proved unsteady, as has been expertly explained by Robert Murphy at the Institute for Energy Research.

Evidently, Taylor’s original thesis (i.e., trading a carbon tax to stop EPA rules) does not withstand scrutiny well, because he ditched that argument during his presentation on Wednesday. Instead, he focused on the conservative appeal of a carbon tax implemented as the centerpiece of a prudent risk mitigation strategy.

Implausibly, Taylor claimed to have divined the precise odds of “catastrophic climate change.” According to Taylor, there is a 10 percent chance of climate change causing temperature increases of 11 degrees Fahrenheit by 2100 on a business-as-usual trajectory. To be fair, he conceded some uncertainty: He said that the chance of an “unimaginable disaster” may be “8 percent or 12 percent.”

Wednesday’s debate was the first I’d heard that there’s a 10 percent chance of climate catastrophe by 2100, and I’m skeptical of its worth as a “fact” on which public policy should be rendered. Moreover, it strikes me as being alarmist even by the hyperbolic standards shared by Joe Romm and his ilk on the eco-freak fringe.

There are other problems with Taylor's argument. For example, he couches his risk management proposal in the familiar terms of hedging and insurance in the financial sector. Such a comparison is, however, inapposite. Given our near total reliance on fossil fuels, the only way to fight global warming is to completely transform the global economy. Anything short of that won't save us. So we’re not talking about insuring our position within the current market; rather, we’re talking about completely remaking the current market. Those are markedly difference risk management strategies.

Another problem with his reasoning is that the putative danger undercuts the impetus for his grand political bargain. If we face a certain 10 percent chance of catastrophe, wouldn’t that warrant EPA regulations, in addition to a carbon tax? There are other problems with his argument, foremost among them being his unwillingness to proffer a price, which is no small component of his plan.

To recap: Jerry Taylor’s original argument for a carbon tax—that it could be traded for a rescission of EPA climate rules—seems to have gone by the wayside, likely due to the effectiveness of criticisms leveled by IER’s Robert Murphy. On Wednesday, at an AEI-sponsored debate, Taylor presented his new and improved argument—that it’s a “moral and ethical” imperative for conservatives to support a carbon tax as a mitigation strategy, because there is a 10 percent chance (maybe 8 percent, maybe 12 percent) that climate change will be catastrophic. For the reasons I set forth above, his new focus is no less unreasonable than the original.

Taylor’s opponent, Benjamin Zycher, did a great job, to no one’s surprise. Michael Bastasch penned an excellent write-up of the event, available here.

D.C. Circuit Court Disappoints (but there is a silver lining)

On Tuesday, a three judge panel on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a challenge brought by industry and 15 States to check EPA’s Clean Power Plan. The court ruled that the challenge was premature, because the rule hasn’t yet been finalized. Because the judges ruled on jurisdictional grounds, the court did not tip its hand regarding the merits of the petitioners’ challenge to the rule, which was based on the argument that EPA lacks the authority to issue the Clean Power Plan. (For more on the merits of the case, see here and here.)

EPA is expected to publish the final rule in august. Thereafter, opponents of the Clean Power Plan will seek a stay of the regulation, the success of which would be based in part on the likelihood of their winning on the merits. The D.C. Circuit likely would render a decision whether or not to stay the regulation in late fall or early winter.

While Tuesday’s ruling was a disappointment, environmental lawyer Brian Potts points to a possible silver lining. In an excellent Forbes op-ed published on Thursday, Potts notes that under the D.C. Circuit Court’s rules, there’s a substantial likelihood that the same panel of judges that heard Tuesday’s case will adjudicate the next challenge. This bodes well for opponents of the rule, as the three judges are all known to be sensitive to EPA overreach.

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.