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Observing my upside down America

Obfuscating Global Warming and The American Clean Energy and Security Act

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Obfuscation 1 – The ‘Hockey Stick’ Graph
This famous (or infamous) graph is based primarily on tree ring growth of the Northern Hemisphere and plots samples which supposedly date back to 1000 AD.

The interpreter of the graph is to understand the width of each of the tree rings involved correlate to a quantitative temperature difference over time.

Tree ring growth varies from season to season and reflect influential and varying factors such as temperature, moisture, sunlight, disease, pest, soil conditions, etc. Since photosynthesis can only occur during daylight hours tree ring widths reflect only the daylight growth season.

The graph does not reflect night-time temperature variance or non-growth periods represented by fall-winter seasons. It reflects the period of daylight hours when the tree was growing during peak periods. Furthermore, the graph omits temperatures over the other 2 thirds of the surface of the globe occupied by water, not to mention the Southern Hemisphere.

The Medieval Warm Period peaked around 1200 AD and represents a time when temperatures were as much as 3°C higher than today. Any casual reader of the graph would have noticed this period of time shows the graph line somewhat higher than the line representing current temperatures, however, this period does not appear on the graph. This leaves the reader with the distinct impression today’s temperatures are the highest on record for the last 1200 years.

Obfuscation 2 – Generation Investment Management and Al Gore
Generation Investment Management is an investment firm focusing on traditional equity investments in addition to economic, environmental, social, governance risks and opportunities. Al Gore is the chairman of the company which employs just over 30 people. GIM, LLC was co-founded with Managing Partner, David Blood.

GIM owns a 10% stake in the Chicago Climate Exchange (CCX), which owns half of European Climate Exchange. This inconvenient truth represents the built-in incentive which drives Al Gore’s global warming awareness initiative. Selling industry on the idea of “carbon credit” investing creates profits for CCX, GIM and Al Gore. To promote global warming is to promote Al Gore, et. al.

Who could believe Al Gore as a credible and unbiased spokesman for the so-called global warming phenomena?

Obfuscation 3 – Information suppressed by the EPA
There is a growing number of scientists who do not believe in the data supporting global warming. Perhaps the real crisis lies in learning that departments within the U.S. government is suppressing data supporting their view.

Obfuscation 4 – Terms and numbers
The term “greenhouse effect” describes the exchange between surface, atmosphere and surface. At best, the term is a metaphor for a kind of atmospheric check-valve which slows the inevitable loss of energy into space.

Overall, the net incoming solar energy equals the net outgoing solar energy. One more thing; water vapor is the most abundant and dominant greenhouse gas.

For a comprehensive “introduction” into the components which make up the topic of global warming and green house gases this link may be of interest.

Now that everyone is confused let’s introduce the Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009
With the debate of global warming not quite over, on May 21, 2009 the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 was passed out of the House Energy and Commerce Committee by a vote of 33-25, largely falling along political party lines. The committee chairman is Henry Waxman of California.

The bill is also known as the Waxman-Markey Cap and Trade Bill (H.R. 2454), after its authors, Representatives Henry A. Waxman of California and Edward J. Markey of Massachusetts, both Democrats. Waxman is the chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee, and Markey is the chairman of that committee’s Energy and Environment Subcommittee.

What’s in it?
The American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 (ACES) is an energy bill in the 111th United States Congress that would establish a variant of a cap-and-trade plan for greenhouse gases to address climate change. It sets a slightly higher target for reductions in emissions of carbon dioxide, methane, and other greenhouse gases than that proposed by President Barack Obama. The bill requires a 17-percent emissions reduction from 2005 levels by 2020; Obama has proposed a 14 percent reduction by 2020. Both plans would reduce United States’ emissions by about 80 percent by 2050.

It includes a renewable electricity standard (almost identical to a renewable portfolio standard, but narrowly tailored to electrical energy) requiring each electricity provider who supplies over 4 million MWh to produce 20 percent of its electricity from renewable sources (such as wind, solar, and geothermal) by 2020. There is a provision whereby 5% of this standard can be met through energy efficiency savings, as well as an additional 3% with certification of the Governor of the state in which the provider operates.

Our representatives like it
The bill was approved by the House of Representatives on June 26, 2009 by a vote of 219-212, with 8 Republicans supporting, and 44 Democrats voting against, and 3 members not voting. Democratic votes against largely came from freshman in Republican-leaning seats, conservative “blue dog” democrats, as well as Democrats from the rust-belt and coal-producing districts. It has not yet been approved by the U.S. Senate.

Republicans supporting the bill included Army Secretary nominee John M. McHugh and moderate Republican Main Street Partnership caucus members Mary Bono Mack (R-CA), Mike Castle (R-DE), Dave Reichert (R-WA), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Leonard Lance (R-NJ), Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ).[17] Well-established moderates Kirk and Mike Castle are also members of the Republicans for Environmental Protection caucus.

Is this the right thing for America…. Now?
We are naive to think the cost/benefit ratio warrants the financial ruin this bill will help bring to this country. America is already on the hook for over 1.3 trillion spent to deal with the so-called toxic assets and other related debacles. Then there is the costs associated with the looming health care program which faces us.

Americans have already gone into what I call “recoil mode” electing to curtail spending which fuels our economy which it desperately needs. Gas and other energy prices are up. Our 401Ks are down. The future for the bulk of the baby-boomers isn’t as bright as it once was which likely means they will be forced to stay in a competitive job market far longer than they originally planed.

What is good for the goose should be good for the gander, right?
The American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 does not force other countries to apply the same programs and policies which this bill forces upon America. To this end, Mike J. Rogers (R-MI) offered an amendment that cancels the law unless China and India adopt similar standards. It was defeated as was 14 other Republican amendments which were intended cancel or suspend the law to protect consumers in the event of rising gas and electricity prices. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) offered an amendment requiring the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency‎ (EPA) to label energy bills, food, manufactured products and fuels with the price impact this law has on the item. None of the 24 amendments sponsored by a Democrat had been defeated.

We should now be asking ourselves how this bill will prevent China’s and India’s polluted air from getting into “our cleaned air” and vise-versa. Without their participation the impact on global climate will be insubstantial. This argument is based on the leading role these two countries have obtained in carbon dioxide emissions which could reach 34% of the global total by 2030.

We may as will disarm our military on the hope a peace epidemic breaks out.

New shackles upon America’s economy
How does America effectively compete with the rest of the world when the cost of doing business shackles America’s economy? How will Americans be able to pump their discretionary income into the economy when they have less money in their pockets?

Americans now have to think about their new $2,631.00 tax increase (per year) brought upon them by the new Senate Budget, described as the largest tax increase in America’s history.

If the additional tax burden has you worried, consider too that America’s business leaders will be looking for new ways to compete with the rest of the world, unshackled by the expenses associated with this bill. That means they will be sending more jobs off-shore to take advantage of a more hospitable business climate. This will no doubt add to the already rising rate of unemployment which will further reduce the level of discretionary income to be pumped into the already anemic economy.

It’s a death spiral for America.

Written by Ben

December 7, 2009 at 5:02 pm

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