- Energy and Global Warming News for October 1st: A mad dash for smart-grid cash; Toyota's two-faced stance on warming; Senate bill replaces "cap-and-trade" with "pollution reduction and investment"
- Feinstein endorses EPA decision: "Hopefully, this will encourage the Senate to pass a comprehensive climate change bill quickly. If it does not, the Obama Administration should be commended for having the courage to protect our environment and our Earth."
- What's in a name? That which we call "Kerry-Boxer," by any other name would …
- People reluctant to book Sarah 'Four Pinocchios' Palin for speaking engagements because "they think she is a blithering idiot."
- Reid: Senate floor action before Copenhagen remains on agenda, Cantwell: "We're happy the bill is moving. That's the key thing, because we all want to put a price on carbon," Graham: "It's a start."
- Breaking: New EPA rule will require use of best technologies to reduce greenhouse gases from large facilities when "constructed or significantly modified" — small businesses and farms exempt
- Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act an improvement over House bill on offsets
- Nike runs fast and loud from the incredible, shrinking U.S. Chamber Board over its global warming denial
- Governors' Global Climate Summit webcast
- Energy and Global Warming News for September 30th: Indonesia pledges CO2 cut of 26% to 41% by 2020, "We will change the status of our forest from that of a net emitter sector to a net sink sector by 2030."
Posted: 01 Oct 2009 09:48 AM PDT
Feinstein endorses EPA decision: "Hopefully, this will encourage the Senate to pass a comprehensive climate change bill quickly. If it does not, the Obama Administration should be commended for having the courage to protect our environment and our Earth."
Posted: 01 Oct 2009 09:31 AM PDT
Today, Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), chair of the Senate Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies appropriations subcommittee, released a statement:
Posted: 01 Oct 2009 07:47 AM PDT
Okay, the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act ain't Shakespeare — and it ain't perfect.
Still, there is much confusion about its name. I heard it straight from the primary sponsors themselves that it is "Kerry-Boxer" and not the other way around. The House bill is Waxman-Markey, and it would be inappropriate (and confusing) to call it Markey-Waxman.
It may not seem like a big deal, but this minor brouhaha actually made it into E&E News PM (subs. req'd) last night with a Shakespearean sub-head:
Posted: 30 Sep 2009 05:28 PM PDT
When we last left GOP quitter-in-chief Sarah Palin she had written a falsehood-filled piece attacking climate action and clean energy for, who else, the Washington Post. Then Senators Boxer and Kerry debunked her piece, pointing out "The governor's new refrain against global warming action reminds us of every naysayer who has spoken out against progress in cleaning up pollution."
At the same time, Newt Gingrich called her a conservative leader on energy issues, asserting "Her knowledge of the energy issue is very real." In fact, Palin is so ignorant of energy, so practiced at repeating falsehoods, that during last year's presidential campaign, the Washington Post itself gave her its highest (which is to say lowest) rating of "Four Pinocchios" for continuing to "to peddle bogus [energy] statistics three days after the original error was pointed out by independent fact-checkers."
Now Think Progress reports Palin "has signed on with the Washington Speakers Bureau, hoping to cash in on her fame. While Palin did do one speech — to mixed reviews — in Asia recently, she is reportedly having trouble getting booked for more":
The real idiots are anyone pays Palin 100k to speak.
A Palin primer:
Posted: 30 Sep 2009 03:47 PM PDT
Buried in the E&E News (subs. req'd) story this morning about the Kerry-Boxer bill is this piece of news:
While I don't think it's crucial, I certainly would like to see a fast track for the bill. Two guesses as to whether these comments by Reid get anywhere near as much attention in the status quo media as his earlier comments that the bill might not get to the floor this year.
Kerry and Boxer intentionally left out the details of key provisions needed to bring along moderates and Republicans, including a nuclear title and final negotiations on coal with carbon capture and storage. Still, the reaction wasn't as bad as I had feared:
Hmm. That last sentence is confusing. I'm going to take the positive spin that he means there are some circumstances under which she could support a cap-and-trade pollution reduction and investment bill. Still, she's pretty doubtful.
That seems not fatally negative. Assuming the bill on the floor has slightly weaker targets and a substantial nuclear power title, it would seem to me that McCain is gettable, especially if Obama were to lobby him personally and ask for his help, which would certainly be worth it if McCain can bring Graham with him.
Cantwell's gonna vote for the bill. I'll bet that Dorgan will at least vote for cloture, to end the inevitable and immoral conservative filibuster — but again, Obama will need to personally intervene.
Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) put out this tough statement:
So the final bill will move in his direction. I think he'll support it. Heck, I'm such an optimist I think there's a 50-50 chance Byrd will vote for cloture.
Posted: 30 Sep 2009 02:34 PM PDT
This is from an EPA press release. I will phone in to the press call shortly and add any interesting updates. It's great to see that the EPA nd the Obama administration have not been intimidated by the efforts of Lisa "fiddle while Alaska burns" Murkowski to block EPA regulation.
I'm told that the Murkowski amendment came as a big shock to the White House — and that, ironically, it may put the Kerry-Boxer bill on a faster timetable, so the Senate doesn't give her another chance to repeat her hypocritical effort (see Murkowski amendment to undermine the Clean Air Act is dead — for now. Feinstein says "we can't afford to bury our heads in the sand on climate change").
The two biggest myths about the EPA's efforts to regulate CO2 are, from the right, that EPA will be regulating everybody, including small businesses and farmers, and, from the left, that the EPA's endangerment finding can somehow stop dangerous warming if the climate bill dies. What they will mostly be doing is new sources, although if Congress fails to act on CO2 regulations, they will no doubt pursue stricter regulations than they otherwise would.
Here's the rest of the EPA release:
For more, see Wonk Room.
Posted: 30 Sep 2009 02:05 PM PDT
One of the weakest features in both the House and Senate climate bills is the large quantity of offsets that polluters are allowed to buy in place of purchasing allowances or reducing their own emissions. I have spent a lot of time talking to leading experts and analyzing the international offset market, which has led me to realize that large-scale, inexpensive international offsets don't exist nor will they (see "Do the 2 billion offsets allowed in Waxman-Markey gut the emissions targets?") — whereas large-scale inexpensive domestic emissions reductions strategies do (see "the 2020 Waxman-Markey target is so damn easy and cheap to meet").
Moreover, CBO projects that roughly half of the domestic offsets will come from actual reductions in U.S. emissions (in uncapped sectors). As for international offsets, they aren't as bad as many people think (see "The CDM: Rip-offsets or real reductions?"), they haven't gutted the Europe's Kyoto targets under their trading system (see "Europe poised to meet Kyoto target: Does this mean the much-maligned European Trading System is a success?"), and lots of countries want to join the market (see "Japan's carbon cuts may include offsets"). That said, they need greater supervision (see "UN suspends largest CDM auditor — Copenhagen needs to clean up the Clean Development Mechanism, Senate should keep House's tough offset language").
The good news is that the Senate bill seems like a genuine improvement over the house bill in this key area, according to my guest blogger, Victor B. Flatt, the Taft Distinguished Professor of Environmental Law at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill School of Law, and the Distinguished Scholar of Carbon Trading and Carbon Markets, Global Energy Management Institute, University of Houston, Bauer College of Business. His post, "Kerry-Boxer an Improvement over ACES on Offsets," was first published by the Center for Progressive Reform here.
I have taken the liberty of changing "Boxer-Kerry" to "Kerry-Boxer" throughout this reposting.
Posted: 30 Sep 2009 01:14 PM PDT
Nike has put on its running shoes and bolted from the incredible, shrinking industry group's board, like so many others (see "Will last company to leave the Chamber's Boardroom please turn off the lights!" and "Nation's largest utility pulls the plug on the Chamber over climate denial"). Think Progress has the details:
In the past couple weeks, three energy companies have ditched the reeling U.S. Chamber of Commerce over its opposition to global warming action. Although Nike has publicly expressed its frustrations with the Chamber's anti-science positions, it hasn't started to sever ties with the organization — until now.
The New York Times has an editorial today criticizing the Chamber for being "way behind the curve":
Enviroknow writes that two questions remain: 1) "When will Nike formally end its membership in the U.S. Chamber of Commerce?" and 2) "Which of the following 17 corporations — which are on the record in support of federal climate legislation yet sit on the Chamber's Board of Directors — will be the next to part ways with the chamber?"
The Chamber itself is trying to run from its far-out-of-the-mainstream denialism, but it can't outrun the truth — see Chamber of Horrors: The incredible, shrinking industry group falsely claims "We've never questioned the science behind global warming."
Posted: 30 Sep 2009 01:06 PM PDT
Energy and Global Warming News for September 30th: Indonesia pledges CO2 cut of 26% to 41% by 2020, "We will change the status of our forest from that of a net emitter sector to a net sink sector by 2030."
Posted: 30 Sep 2009 11:17 AM PDT
Yet another major emitter in the developing world pledges to dramatically change their emissions trajectory.
Yes, this commitment is against business as usual growth, but that is the top priority for developing countries, and these cuts are still a big deal from the third biggest emitter in the world.
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