Irony Alert! Coal-Fired Train Featured on White House Christmas Ornament

The Obama White House may think coal isn’t good enough to power our economy, but it must think it’s good enough to add some Christmas cheer.

While the Obama administration gave coal producers and electricity generators an early lump of coal after EPA released proposed carbon regulations, a coal-fired train is the star of the 2014 White House Christmas ornament.

2014 White House Christmas Ornament Features a Coal-Fired Train

 As the White House Historical Association explains, the ornament is the first to be composed of two pieces [emphasis mine]:

The locomotive is a detailed miniature replica of one of several steam-powered locomotives that pulled the Presidential Special; it is attached to the coal car that held its fuel. The other miniature car is the Superb, the president’s private heavyweight Pullman car. The last car on the Special, the Superb was outfitted with a public address system. President Harding made appearances and delivered speeches at stops across the country from a platform at the back of the car.

President Warren Harding’s transcontinental speaking and sightseeing tour inspired the design.

The ornament reminds us that just as it powered the trains that tied America together into an economic powerhouse, coal still plays a critical role in fueling America’s economy. According to the Energy Information Agency, more electricity is produced by coal (37%) than any other energy source. It’s the backbone of affordable, reliable electricity.
Electricity generation by energy source.

Source: Energy Information Administration

The United States possesses coal reserves that can last for nearly three centuries. The attacks on this abundant energy source by regulators will mean lost jobs, slower economic growth, higher electricity costs, and a less reliable electrical grid.

President Obama said in 2008 while campaigning, “If somebody wants to build a coal-fired power plant, they can. It’s just that it will bankrupt them.” However, trinkets depicting coal apparently are acceptable.

The ornament is a lovely decoration sure to add character to anyone’s Christmas tree, even of those whose jobs will be lost because of federal regulations pushing coal use out of the economy.

Follow Sean Hackbarth on Twitter at @seanhackbarth and the U.S. Chamber at @uschamber.

Hollywood celebrities caught accepting money from “Middle Eastern oil interests” to make anti-fracking film

project veritas logoJames O’Keefe Premieres “Expose: Hollywood’s War on US Energy” at Cannes Film Festival. Hollywood celebrities are caught on hidden camera accepting money from “Middle Eastern oil interests”

HotAir.com’s Ed Morrissey writes, “For those who remember the controversy surrounding the financing of the anti-fracking Matt Damon film Promised Landthis new undercover video from James O’Keefe and Project Veritas will simply confirm suspicions. O’Keefe set himself up as an ersatz Middle Eastern oil baron in order to test the Hollywood environmental waters to see how welcome his supposed money would be in attacking American energy independence. The big names in this effort, Ed Begley Jr and Mariel Hemingway, will get the most notice but are in essence collateral damage. The real targets for this probe are Josh and Rebecca Tickell, award-winning producers who are all too keen to take Middle Eastern money to attack American natural-gas exploration…”

In a blockbuster new video, Project Veritas has exposed the truth about the dark funding behind Hollywood’s anti-fracking messaging machine. New York Times Bestselling Author and Project Veritas founder and president James O’Keefe debuted the latest investigation at a “premiere” in Cannes, France on Wednesday.

In the investigation, an undercover journalist from Project Veritas posed as a member of a Middle Eastern oil dynasty and offered $9 million in funding to American filmmakers to fund an anti-fracking movie.

okeefe at cannes film festival

James O’Keefe at Cannes Film Festival.

In video from a meeting with Ed Begley Jr., Mariel Hemingway and Josh Tickell, a Project Veritas investigator disguised as “Muhammed” offered $9 million for an anti-fracking film. “Muhammad” clearly states: “If Washington DC continues fracking, America will be energy efficient, and then they won’t need my oil anymore.”

In the same conversation, Begley and Hemingway accept the funding and agree to hide the source of funds for the anti-fracking movie. Hemingway agreeing that those who will know the source of the funding are “only at this table.”

Ed Begley Jr. is an outspoken environmental activist and current Governor on the board of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science (the organization that brings us the OSCARS every year.)

Mariel Hemingway is a Golden Globe- and Oscar-nominated actress.

Josh Tickell is a Sundance Film Festival Winner and the director of environmental message movies “Fuel”, “The Big Fix” and “PUMP”.

Team Begley even submitted a video of Oscar-nominated actor Mark Ruffalo offering his unwavering support for the fictitious anti-fracking film project.

The meeting came about after a series of discussions with Josh and Rebecca Tickell. A Project Veritas journalist posed as an ad executive seeking to broker a deal for his client (“Muhammed”) to fund an American-made anti-fracking film.

[youtube]http://youtu.be/KOX5ehfFF7I[/youtube]

In a phone call to Tickell, the ad executive states: “My client’s interest is to end American energy independence; your interest is to end fracking. And you guys understand that?”

Tickell’s response: “Correct. Yes, super clear.”

Tickell makes it clear on the tape that revealing the source of funding for an activist film can undermine its credibility. Tickell notes that the movie “Promised Land” undermined its own message because it was labeled as being funded by Image Nation Abu Dhabi. His advice: “So rather than putting that [the source of funding] up front, don’t mention that.”

In a follow-up call with Josh and Rebecca Tickell, Rebecca Tickell assures our investigator: “We would never tell about where the funding is coming from. That would be really awkward for us.”

Josh Tickell: “We’re confident that we can keep this zip locked, you know tight, air-tight forever. If we don’t protect who is kind of funding this thing, if we have to disclose that or that becomes a necessary part of it, the whole enterprise will not work.”

Project Veritas founder and president James O’Keefe stated Wednesday:

“This latest investigation shows the dark side of Hollywood’s environmental movement. Hollywood is willing to take and conceal money from Middle Eastern oil interests in order to advance their cause of destroying American energy independence.”

The raw video can be found at http://Youtube.com/VeritasVisuals

Project Veritas is non-partisan and does not advocate for political candidates or parties. The purpose of Project Veritas’ investigations is to expose waste, fraud, dishonesty and self-dealing.

Stay up to date on who responds by following us on Facebook athttp://Facebook.com/ProjectVeritas and on Twitter @Project_Veritas.

Support Project Veritas’ investigations at http://ProjectVeritas.com/donate

It’s a Very Complex World

In the 1980s I devoted a lot of effort to debunking a torrent of Green lies about pesticides and herbicides. This was before the Greens latched onto “global warming” which has since become “climate change” and the subject of a recent White House report filled with dire predictions of planetary doom and disaster.

Nobody died from using pesticides or herbicides in the 1980s or since unless they drank it straight from the bottle. When I talked with farmers they would frequently say “Do you think I would put this stuff on the crops my family eats if I thought it would harm them?” The Greens have always attacked anything that would increase crop growth by limiting the real harm of weeds or the predation of insect species. These days genetically modified seeds are a target for environmentalists though studies have amply demonstrated their crops are safe to eat.

Less food means less people and that has always been a major goal of the people leading the nation’s and the world’s major environmental organizations. The same formula applies to denying energy to people worldwide.

As for pesticides, we all use them to keep our homes and workplaces free of insects that are the key vectors for all manner of diseases. In a world before their invention, millions died from mosquito-borne diseases such as Yellow Fever, Dengue Fever, Encephalitis, West Nile virus and Malaria. Millions still die from malaria and these diseases because one of the most effective pesticides ever invented was DDT and it was banned because of the lies Rachel Carson told in her iconic, environmental book, “Silent Spring.”

Cover - Smaller FasterThe world is a very complex place and it is essential to have a fundamental understanding of how it works. One of the best new books on this subject is Robert Bryce’s “Smaller Faster Lighter Denser Cheaper” ($27.99, Public Affairs). What Bryce doesn’t know about energy is probably not worth knowing and, happily, he has authored several books on the subject. His latest provides wonderful and useful insights to the world we share today with seven billion other human beings.

Bryce quotes Edward Abbey, “one of the patron saints of American environmentalism” who, in 1971, said, “We humans swarm over the planet like a plague of locusts, multiplying and devouring. There is no justice, sense or decency in this mindless global breeding spree, this obscene anthropoid fecundity, this industrialized mass production of babies and bodies, ever more bodies and babies.”

This is the kind of thinking that is the hidden justification for genocides. Not surprisingly the leaders of the Nazi regime were all dedicated environmentalists. At the heart of much that passes for environmentalism is an attack on the energy sources that enhance or lives and agricultural practices that feed us.

It’s not by accident that environmental groups all trumpet the same doomsday lies at the same time. Their leaders get together to coordinate their efforts and the current one is aimed at what they call “de-growth”, the reduction of economic growth by any means.

With President Obama blathering about “climate change” threats, it should not surprise anyone to conclude that the horrible economic conditions he has imposed on our nation was not an accident, nor that he focuses on thwarting the provision of energy, the most vital component of economic growth.

“The prescriptions put forward by the degrowth crowd,” says Bryce, “are familiar. Nuclear energy is bad. Genetically modified foods are bad. Coal isn’t just bad, it’s awful. Oil is bad. Natural gas—and the process often used to produce it, hydraulic fracturing is bad.” And it is no surprise that the Environmental Protection Agency—the most anti-growth governmental agency—has just announced steps to require the disclosure of chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing, a technology that has been in use for more than a half century and one that has unlocked access to vast reserves of natural gas and oil.

It is essential to understand who the enemy is and it is groups like the Sierra Club, Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, and the Worldwatch Institute, to name just a few.

The next time some environmental spokesman is busy spreading fear, Bryce says it is necessary to keep in mind that “Their outlook rejects innovation and modern forms of energy. It rejects business and capitalism. We must move past the climate of fear to one of optimism. We must move past fear of technology to an understanding that technology isn’t the problem; it’s the solution.”

© Alan Caruba, 2014

Is oil a renewable resource?

I suspect that most people think the Earth is running out of oil or that the U.S. and the rest of the world are “addicted” to its use.

Both beliefs are wrong, but in different ways. First because the Earth produces oil in abundance deep within its mantel in ways that have nothing to do with dead dinosaurs and gives no indication of ever stopping this natural process and, second, because the use of oil for fuel and for thousands of other applications, not the least of which is plastics, is one of the great blessings of modern technology and life.

All this is made dazzlingly clear in Dr. Jerome R. Corsi’s book, The Great Oil Conspiracy. By way of explaining why there is so much oil within the planet Dr. Corsi tells the story of the Nazi regimes development of synthetic oil after German scientists “cracked the code God built into the heart of chemistry to form hydrocarbons in the first place.” Known as the “Fischer-Tropsch” process, it permitted the Nazis to pursue war even though Germany had no oil fields of its own.

The widespread use of the term “fossil fuels” is a deception created by anti-energy propagandists and earlier theorists to make people believe that oil is the result of countless dead dinosaurs and decaying vegetation. Oil, however, is “abiotic”, a term that means it is a natural product of the earth itself “manufactured at deep levels where there never were any plants or animals.”

Corsi writes of Thomas Gold, a professor of astronomy who taught at Cornell University. In 1998 he published a controversial book entitled The Deep Hot Biosphere: The Myth of Fossil Fuels, in which he applied his knowledge of the solar system, noting that carbon is the fourth more abundant element in the universe, right after hydrogen, helium, and oxygen. Gold pointed out that “carbon is found mostly in compounds with hydrogen—hydrocarbons—which, at different temperatures and pressures, may be gaseous, liquid, or solid.”

Gold, who passed away in 2004, was way ahead of most other scientists with his assertion that the earth produces oil at very deep levels. While telling the story of how the U.S. went to great lengths to acquire the data regarding synthetic oil production as our military overran Germany and then took care not to let the public know about. It was, after all, our own oil industry that had provided the fuel that aided the war effort in both theaters.

Correspondingly, the oil industry had no reason to develop “relatively expensive synthetic oil when billions of dollars in profits could be made annually bringing to market naturally produced and reasonably priced hydrocarbon fuels, including crude oil and natural gas.”

This mirrors the efforts of “renewable” energy producers, wind, solar, and bio-fuels like ethanol, to profit at the cost of billions of dollars in subsidies and loan guarantees paid for by taxpayers along with higher electricity and gasoline bills paid for by consumers; all of which are mandated by the federal government. It is pure crony capitalism to enrich a few at the expense of all the rest of us. None of these alternative forms of power could exist or even compete without such government mandated support.

As Dr. Corsi points out, “Eliminating the fear that the world is running out of oil eliminates an urgency to experiment with or to implement alternative fuels including bio-fuels, wind energy, and solar energy as long as these energies remain less energy-efficient, less reliable, and more costly than using oil and natural gas.”

There are, in fact, “more proven petroleum reserves than ever before, despite the increasing rate at which we are consuming petroleum products worldwide” says Dr. Corsi, noting that the Energy Information Administration of the U.S. Department of Energy, in on record that “there are more proven crude oil reserves worldwide than ever in recorded history, despite the fact that worldwide consumption of crude oil has doubled since the 1970s.”

So tell me why, since the Obama administration took over, have gas prices per gallon risen from $1.84 to $3.80 now, a rise of 105%? The American Energy Alliance compared costs between 2009 and 2012, publishing them to reveal that we are all paying more for energy. The average monthly residential electricity bill has increased 6% and annual household energy expenses have increased 31%.

At the same time, the Obama Department of Energy increased new rules whose implementation cost more than $100 million each 141%! The Environmental Protection Agency increase of such regulations increased 40%, the Department of the Interior, 13%.

Total regulatory costs (all sectors) went from $1,172 trillion in 2009 to $1,752 trillion today! If you were trying to bankrupt the energy sector and its consumers, this is a great way to do it.

You can access the AEA chart at: http://www.americanenergyalliance.org/four-year-energy-chart

The Obama administration came into office declaring a war on coal, further restricting oil and natural gas exploration on federal lands and offshore, and wasting billions on solar, wind, and bio-fuel companies. That in itself would be reason enough to turn them out of office.

The Earth is not running out of oil and likely never will.

RELATED STORIES:

What If Oil and Natural Gas Are Renewable Resources?
Oil Might Be a Renewable Resource, and Other Things You Did Not Know

The Supreme Court Helps the EPA Shut Off Electricity in America

April 2014 seems to be the month in which the Supreme Court devotes itself to decisions that have no basis in real science and can do maximum damage to the economy. Invariably, the cases are brought against the Environmental Protection Agency and are decided in its favor.

In April 2007, the Court decided that carbon dioxide, the second most essential gas for all life on the planet was “a pollutant”, the definition the EPA had applied to it in order to regulate it. Now comes word that the Court had concluded that the EPA may regulate power-plant emissions that blow across state lines as per a 2011 regulation, the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule. Not content having put nearly 150 or more coal-fired power plants out of commission, the Court’s rule now gives them the authority to do the same thing to about a thousand power plants in the eastern and western regions of the U.S. that will have to adopt new pollution controls or reduce operations.

In effect, the Court has just agreed to a regulation that represents a major increase in the cost of electricity in 28 states deemed to be polluting the air in those around them. The EPA’s claims that this will save lives they attribute to the alleged pollution is as bogus as all the rest of their claims, the purpose of which is to undermine the nation’s economy in every way it can.

Power Lines3James M. Taylor, the Heartland Institute’s Senior Fellow for Environmental Policy said of Tuesday’s decision that “It is a shame that the U.S. Supreme Court continues to empower EPA to issue nonsensical interpretations of statutes with the primary goal of amassing more money and power.”

Every day the press is filled with reports of environmental groups suing to ensure that no new providers of electricity can be built. The Environmental Protection Agency has instituted all manner of regulations intended to shut down coal-fired plants and they are based on the total lie that carbon dioxide and other “greenhouse gases” are causing the Earth to warm. The science cited is entirely without merit and the Earth is cooling, not warming, and has been for the past seventeen years.

As winters grow colder, it is putting a tremendous demand on the nation’s electrical grid. In a recent commentary, Steve Gorham, the author of “The Mad, Mad, Mad World of Climatism: Mankind and Climate Change Mania”, quoted Philip Moeller, Commissioner of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, “the experience of this past winter indicates that the power grid is now already at the limit.”

“EPA policies,” said Gorham, “such as the Mercury and Air Toxics rule and the Section 316 Cooling Water Rule, are forcing the closure of many coal-fired plants, which provided 39 percent of U.S. electricity last year. American Electric Power, a provider of about ten percent of the electricity to eastern states, will close almost one quarter of the firm’s coal-fired generating plants in the next fourteen months. Eighty-nine percent (89%) of the power scheduled for closure was needed to meet electricity demand in January. Not all of this capacity has replacement plans.”

Before Obama was elected, coal-fired plants provided fifty percent (50%) of the nation’s electricity.

What is the Obama administration’s response to this? It is pouring billions into the wind and solar energy sector that provides barely one percent of all the electricity used in the nation and can never begin to replace traditional plants.

In an April 25 letter from the American Energy Alliance, joined by thirty other organizations, to the House Ways and Means Committee, opposition to the Wind Production Tax Credit was expressed: “The PTC has been a failure for taxpayers and ratepayers. In exchange for tens of billions of dollars in handouts to wind producers, the states with the highest wind production have seen their electricity rates increase nearly five times faster than the national average. In fact, states with at least 7 percent wind power have seen their electricity rates increase at an average of 17.4 percent over the last 5 years compared to an increase of only 3.5 percent for the U.S. as a whole” Why, indeed, are taxpayers being required to sustain providers of wind power that would not be able to stay in business otherwise?
In addition to the fact that you cannot manufacture anything without the use of electricity, a deliberate effort is being made to ensure that vast sections of the nation will not be able to receive electricity to warm homes and businesses in the winter and cool them in the summer. Simply put, people will die for lack of the warmth and coolness needed, not from the phony pollution the EPA cites.

This is the heart of an environmental agenda that views the human population as “a cancer” that needs to be vastly reduced. This agenda is directed from the United Nations and its Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change that falsely claims that humans have a vast impact on the climate. They do not. Human activity barely, if at all, affects the climate. What does? The Sun! Add in factors that include the Earth’s oceans and volcanic activity, and it should be obvious that everyone is being targeted for extinction.

In an article, “The EPA’s Science Problem”, Arnold Ahlert, noted in early April that “In a stunning admission, Environmental Protection Agency administrator Gina McCarthy revealed to House Science, Space and Technology Committee chairman Lamar Smith (R-TX) that the agency neither possesses, nor can produce, all the scientific data used to justify the rules and regulations they have imposed on Americans via the Clean Air Act. In short, science has been trumped by the radical environmental agenda.”

The Obama administration has done everything in its power to restrict and slow down access and use of America’s huge energy reserves, enough to ensure all the electrical power we will need for hundreds of years to come. The same policy applies to transportation’s petroleum needs. Oil and gas production on federal lands is down 40% compared to ten years ago.

According to the Institute for Energy Research notes that “North America has enough oil to fuel every passenger car in the U.S. for 430 years, enough natural gas to provide the U.S. with electricity for 575 years, and enough coal to provide electricity for about 500 years.” And that’s based on known reserves. They are, however, of little use if the Obama administration continues its efforts to restrict access to them.

In an August 2013 Washington Times commentary, Ben Wolfgang warned that the EPA, the Energy Department, and other agencies’ “working group” quietly raised “their estimated social coast of carbon from $21 per ton of emissions to $35 per ton”, noting that “The dramatic increase greatly alters cost-benefit analyses offered by the EPA when floating rules, allowing the agency to claim that billions of dollars will be saved over a period of decades as a result of proposed limits on power plant emissions, tougher fuel economy standards and other steps.”

The “social cost” is a complete invention, a fiction without any basis in fact. It is a device to further restrict access and use of all fuel sources.

Americans had better wake up to the fact that their government—the Obama administration—is doing everything in its power to cut off the provision of electrical power and access to transportation fuel that it can. And the Democrats in Congress, particularly Harry Reid the Senate Majority Leader, is doing everything to advance this agenda by blocking any legislation generated in the House to counter this agenda.

In November, the midterm elections offer an opportunity to elect enough Republicans to secure control of the Senate and increase its strength in the House.

Let me end with the good news. Despite what the enemies of energy are doing, the energy sector—coal, oil, and natural gas—in the decade ahead is going to grow, going to generate many new jobs, and is going to help dig us out of the huge government debt that too much borrowing and spending has generated.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

Florida is one of 31 states that have emissions-free energy from this —

There’s one source of energy that will operate 24/7 – through heat waves or cold snaps – all while producing zero emissions. Seem incredible? That’s just the start of what nuclear energy provides the U.S.

Nuclear energy is powering the country with emissions-free electricity from 100 reactors located in 31 states across the U.S.

Soon, five new reactors will be added to that list with the capacity to produce enough electricity for more than 1 million homes and businesses for the 60 next years.

Nuclear energy directly employs 120,000 workers nationwide, including engineers and skilled tradesmen who provide an economic boost to their communities.

Nuclear is a key component of America’s energy future as it provides affordable, reliable and emissions-free energy for us all. Let’s ensure our energy policy supports a future that includes nuclear.

nuclear power infographic

Nuclear is indispensable to our country’s energy future. Today, explore our infographic, then share the facts on FacebookTwitter, or by email.

Downsizing Australia’s Government and Repealing Green Laws

Try to imagine a commission of the U.S. government recommending that it get rid of the Department of Education, the Department of Health and Human Services, countless agencies, and, for good measure, restructure Medicare so it doesn’t go broke. There are few Americans who will argue that our federal government isn’t big enough and many who trace our present problems to Big Government.

That is why what has been occurring in Australia caught my attention because its voters rid themselves of a political party that imposed both a carbon tax and renewable energy tax on them. The purpose of the latter was to fund the building of wind turbines and solar farms to provide electricity.

Taxing carbon emissions—greenhouse gases—said to be heating the Earth has happily died in the U.S. Senate, but in Australia the taxes were a major reason that the Liberal Party (which is actually politically conservative despite its name) took power after a former Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, pushed it and the renewable energy tax through its parliament.

Gillard became the first woman PM after she challenged then PM Kevin Rudd to lead the Labor Party (which is politically liberal.) Like John Kerry, Gillard was against the taxes before she was for them. How liberal is Rudd? In February he was named a senior fellow of Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. Like Obama, Rudd came out in favor of same-sex marriage when he was the PM.

Bjorn Lomborg, writing in The Australian in late April, noted that both of the taxes “have contributed to household electricity costs rising 110 percent in the past five years, hitting the poor the hardest.” I repeat—110 percent!

It didn’t take Australians long to discover what a disaster taxing carbon emissions was and how useless renewable energy is. In both cases the taxes were based on the notion that “fossil fuels”, coal, oil and natural gas, are a threat to the environment. Despite an increase in the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, the Earth has been cooling for the last seventeen years. Mother Nature always has the last word.

As of this writing, the repeal of the two Green laws is in the Parliament’s Senate after having won assent in the lower House. A September 2013 election provided enough new Senate lawmakers  to ensure the repeal.

The Commonwealth of Australia is the sixth largest nation by total area. It was claimed by Great Britain in 1770 and New South Wales was used as a penal colony initially. As the general population grew and the continent was explored, five more self-governing crown colonies were established. On January 1, 1901, the six colonies and several territories federated to form the Commonwealth. The population is approximately 23 million is highly urbanized and lives primarily in the eastern states.

Australia is the world’s 12th largest economy making it one of the wealthiest in the world, but the environmentally-inspired taxes had a deleterious impact on its economy, particularly the mining of coal and iron. As noted, the cost of electricity skyrocketed.

The present Prime Minister is Anthony John “Tony” Abbott. He has held the office since 2013 and has been the leader of the Liberal Party since 2009. A Member of Parliament, he was first elected in 1994 as the representative of Warringah. He made a lot of news when he protested a proposed Emissions Trade Scheme and forced a leadership ballot that defeated it, becoming in the process the Liberal Party leader and leader of the opposition to Rudd and Gillard’s Labor Party.

As reported in the April 30 edition of the Sydney Morning Herald, Abbott’s Commission of Audit “has recommended massive cuts to the size of government, with whole agencies to be abolished, privatized, or devolved to the states, in what would be the biggest reworking of the federation ever undertaken.”

The Commission, the Herald reported, has 86 recommendations, among which are “calls for the axing of multiple agencies and the surrender of huge swathes of responsibility back to the states in education, health, and other services.”

The Australian reported that Joseph Benedict “Joe” Hockey, Australia’s Treasurer as part of the Abbott government, said that the proposed budget would axe “the vast number of (environmental) agencies that are involved in doing the same thing.” Hockey is no fan of wind power, saying “If I can be a little indulgent, I drive to Canberra to go to parliament and I must say I find those wind turbines around Lake George to be utterly offensive. I think they are a blight on the landscape.” That kind of candid talk, if he was an American politician, would be considered astonishing.

The best “transformation” America could undergo is not President Obama’s version, but a return to the limits set forth in the U.S. Constitution, a document that reflected the Founder’s distinct distrust of a large central government and its allocation of civic responsibilities to the individual states to the greatest degree possible, and to “the people.”

Australia is way ahead of the U.S. in that regard, learning from the errors of environment laws and the expansion of its government into areas of health and education. We would do well to follow its example.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

Obama administration chooses environmentalists over unions on Keystone XL and fracking

While some environmental groups applauded the latest delay of the Keystone XL pipeline, unions whose members would be building it ripped the administration. Sean McGarvey, President of North America’s Building Trades Unions, AFL-CIO, called it “a cold, hard slap in the face for hard working Americans who are literally waiting for President Obama’s approval and the tens of thousands of jobs it will generate.”

Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA) general president Terry O’Sullivan was more colorful, saying, “It’s clear the administration needs to grow a set of antlers, or perhaps take a lesson from Popeye and eat some spinach.”

The Keystone XL pipeline isn’t the only energy issue dividing anti-energy environmental groups and unions who want jobs for their members. Over the weekend, the Associated Press reported that development of shale energy using hydraulic fracturing had strong union support in Pennsylvania:

“The shale became a lifesaver and a lifeline for a lot of working families,” said Dennis Martire, the mid-Atlantic regional manager for the Laborers’ International Union, or LIUNA, which represents workers in numerous construction trades.

Martire said that as huge quantities of natural gas were extracted from the vast shale reserves over the last five years, union work on large pipeline jobs in Pennsylvania and West Virginia has increased significantly. In 2008, LIUNA members worked about 400,000 hours on such jobs; by 2012, that had risen to 5.7 million hours.

In contrast, environmental groups like the Natural Resource Defense Council who patted the administration on the back for the Keystone XL delay, strongly oppose hydraulic fracturing.

In his Keystone XL statement, McGarvey head of the building trades union asked a good question:

Why does President Obama continue to side with radicals instead of the middle class that, twice, put him office, and supports this project by a significant majority?

Out of work American union members would like to know.

[H/T Lachlan Markay at the Washington Free Beacon.]

EDITORS NOTE: The featured photo of a rig drilling for natural gas at a hydraulic fracturing site in Pennsylvania is courtesy of photographer Ty Wright/Bloomberg.

The 2014 state of wind energy: Desperately seeking subsidies by Marita Noon

With the growing story coming out of Ukraine, the ongoing search for the missing Malaysian jet, the intensifying Nevada cattle battle, and the new announcement about the additional Keystone pipeline delay, little attention is being paid to the Production Tax Credit (PTC) for wind energy—or any of the other 50 lapsed tax breaks the Senate Finance Committee approved earlier this month. But, despite the low news profile, the gears of government continue to grind up taxpayer dollars.

The Expiring Provisions Improvement Reform and Efficiency Act (EXPIRE) did not originally include the PT; however, prior to the committee markup hearing on April 3, Senators Charles Grassley (R-IA), Michael Bennet (D-CO), and Maria Cantwell (D-WA) pushed for an amendment to add a 2-year PTC extension. The tax extender package passed out of committee and has been sent to the Senate floor for debate. There, its future is uncertain.

“If the bill becomes law,” reports the Energy Collective, “it will allow wind energy developers to qualify for tax credits if they begin construction by the end of 2015.” The American Wind Energy Association’s (AWEA) website calls on Congress to: “act quickly to retroactively extend the PTC.”

The PTC is often the deciding factor in determining whether or not to build a wind farm. According to Bloomberg, wind power advocates fear: “Without the restoration of the subsidies, worth $23 per megawatt hour to turbine owners, the industry might not recover, and the U.S. may lose ground in its race to reduce dependence on fossil fuels driving global warming.” \

NRELThe National Renewable Energy Laboratory released a report earlier this month affirming the importance of the subsidies to the wind industry. It showed that the PTC has been critical to the development of the U.S. wind power industry. The report also found: PTC “extension options that would ramp down by the end of 2022 appear to be insufficient to support recent levels of deployment.… Extending the production tax credit at its historical level could provide the best opportunity to sustain strong U.S. wind energy installation and domestic manufacturing.”

The PTC was originally part of the Energy Policy Act of 1992. It has expired many times— most recently at the close of 2013. The last-minute 2012 extension, as a part of the American Tax Relief Act, included an eligibility criteria adjustment that allows projects that began construction in 2013, and maintain construction through as long as 2016, to qualify for the 10-year tax credit designed to establish a production incentive. Previously, projects would have had to be producing electricity at the time the PTC expired to qualify.

Thomas Pyle, president of the American Energy Alliance, which represents the interests of oil, coal, and natural gas companies, called the 2013 expiration of the wind PTC “a victory for taxpayers.” He explained: “The notion that the wind industry is an infant that needs the PTC to get on its feet is simply not true. The PTC has overstayed its welcome and any attempt to extend it would do a great disservice to the American people.”

As recently as 2006-2007, “the wind PTC had no natural enemies,” states a new report on the PTC’s future. “The Declining Appetite for the Wind PTC” report points to the assumption that “all extenders are extended eventually, and that enacting the extension is purely a matter of routine, in which gridlock on unrelated topics is the only source of uncertainty and delay.” The report then concludes: “That has been a correct view in past years.”

The report predicts that the PTC will follow “the same political trajectory as the ethanol mandate and the ethanol blenders’ tax credit before it.” The mandate remains—albeit in a slightly weakened state—and the tax credit is gone: “Ethanol no longer needed the blenders’ tax credit because it had the strong support of a mandate (an implicit subsidy) behind it.”

The PTC once enjoyed support from some in the utility industry that needed it to bolster wind power development to meet the mandates. Today, utilities have met their state mandates—or come close enough, the report points out: “their state utility commissioners will not allow them to build more.” It is important to realize that the commissioners are appointed or elected to protect the ratepayers and insure that the rates charged by the utilities are fair and as low as possible. Because of the increased cost of wind energy over conventional sources, commissioners won’t allow any more than is necessary to meet the mandates passed by the legislatures.

The abundance of natural gas and subsequent low price has also hurt wind energy’s predicted price parity. South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard (R), in Bloombergsaid: “If gas prices weren’t so cheap, then wind might be able to compete on its own.” David Crane, chief executive officer of NRG Energy Inc.—which builds both gas and renewable power plants—agrees: “Cheap gas has definitely made it harder to compete.” With the subsidy, companies were able to propose wind projects “below the price of gas.” Without the PTC, Stephen Munro, an analyst at New Energy Finance, confirms: “we don’t expect wind to be at cost parity with gas.”

The changing conditions combined with “wide agreement that the majority of extenders are special interest handouts, the pet political projects of a few influential members of Congress,” mean that “the wind PTC is not a sure bet for extension.” Bloomberg declares: “Wind power in the U.S. is on a respirator.” Mike Krancer, who previously served as secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, in an article in Roll Callstates: “Washington’s usual handout to keep the turbines spinning may be harder to win this time around.”

Despite the claim of “Loud support for the PTC” from North American Windpower (NAW), the report predicts “political resistance.” NAW points to letters from 144 members of Congress urging colleagues to “act quickly to revive the incentives.” Twenty-six Senate members signed the letter to Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-OR), and 118 House members signed a similar letter to Speaker John Boehner (R-OH). However, of the 118, only six were Republicans—which, even if the PTC extension makes it out of the Senate, points to the difficulty of getting it extended in the Republican-controlled House.

Bloomberg cites AWEA as saying: “the Republican-led House of Representatives may not support efforts to extend the tax credits before the November campelection.” This supports the view stated in the report. House Ways & Means Committee Chairman David Camp (R-MI) held his first hearing on tax extenders on April 8. He only wants two of the 55 tax breaks continued: small business depreciation and the R & D tax credit. The report states: “Camp says that he will probably hold hearings on which extenders should be permanent through the spring and into the summer. He hasn’t said when he would do an extenders proposal himself, but our guess is that he will wait until after the fall elections. …We think the PTC is most endangered if Republicans win a Senate majority in the fall.”

So, even if the PTC survives the current Senate’s floor debate (Senator Pat Toomey [R-PA] offered an amendment that would have entirely done away with the PTC), it is only the “first step in a long journey” and, according to David Burton, a partner at law firm Akin Gump Hauer and Feld, is “unlikely on its own to create enough confidence to spur investment in the development of new projects.” Plus, the House will likely hold up its resurrection.

Not to mention the growing opposition to wind energy due to the slaughter of birds and bats—including the protected bald and golden eagles. Or, growing fears about health impacts, maintenance costs, and abandoned turbines.

All of these factors have likely led Jeffrey Immelt, chief executive officer of General Electric Co.—the biggest U.S. turbine supplier—to recently state: “We’re planning for a world that’s unsubsidized. Renewables have to find a way to get to the grid unsubsidized.”

Perhaps this time, the PTC is really dead, leaving smaller manufacturers desperately seeking subsidies.

About the Author: Marita Noon

Marita NoonThe author of Energy FreedomMarita Noon serves as the executive director for Energy Makes America Great Inc. and the companion educational organization, the Citizens’ Alliance for Responsible Energy (CARE). Together they work to educate the public and influence policy makers regarding energy, its role in freedom, and the American way of life. Combining energy, news, politics, and, the environment through public events, speaking engagements, and media, the organizations’ combined efforts serve as America’s voice for energy.

Should California dictate U.S. energy policies? by Paul Driessen

Can the rest of America afford its Alice in Wonderland energy policies for? (Can California?)

California loves to be seen as the trendsetter on energy and environmental policies. But can we really afford to adopt their laws and regulations in the rest of America? Heck, can the once Golden State afford them itself? The path to hell is paved with good intentions, counter-productive policies – and hypocrisy.

The officiajoblessinCAl national unemployment rate is stuck at 6.7% – but with much higher rates for blacks and Hispanics and a labor p labor participation rate that remains the lowest in 35 years. Measured by gross national product, our economy is growing at an abysmal 1.5% or even 1.0% annual rate.

Meanwhile, California’s jobless rate is higher than in all but three other states: 8.1% – and with far worse rates as high as 15% for blacks, Hispanics, and inland communities. First the good news, then the insanity.

Citigroup’s Energy 2020: North America report estimates that the United States, Canada, and Mexico could make North America almost energy independent in 6 years, simply by tapping their vast recoverable oil and natural gas reserves. Doing so would help lower energy and consumer prices, insulate the three nations from volatile or blackmailing foreign suppliers, and spur job creation based on reliable, affordable energy, says the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Driving this revolution is horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing. According to Citigroup, IHS Global Insights, the EIA, and other analysts, “fracking” technology contributed 2.1 million jobs and $285 billion to the U.S. economy in 2013, while adding $62 billion to local, state and federal treasuries! Compare that to mandates and subsidies required for expensive, unreliable, job-killing wind, solar and biofuel energy.

Fracking also slashed America’s oil imports from 60% of its total needs in 2005 to just 28% in 2013. It slashed our import bill by some $100 billion annually.

By 2020 the government share of this boom is expected to rise to $111 billion. By 2035, U.S. oil and natural gas operations could inject over $5 trillion in cumulative capital expenditures into the economy, while contributing $300 billion a year to GDP and generating over $2.5 trillion in cumulative additional government revenues. What incredible benefits! But there’s more.

A Yale University study calculates that the drop in natural gas prices (from $8 per thousand cubic feet or million Btu in 2008, and much more on the spot market, to $4.00 or so now) is saving businesses and families over $125 billion a year in heating, electricity, fertilizer and raw material feed stock costs.

The only thing standing in the way of a U.S. employment boom and economic and industrial renaissance, says Citigroup, is politics: continued or even more oppressive anti-hydrocarbon policies and regulations.

Here’s the insanity. Fully 96% of this nation’s oil and gas production increase took place on state and private lands. Production fell significantly on federal lands under President Obama’s watch, with the Interior Department leasing only 2% of federal offshore lands and 6% of its onshore domain for petroleum, then slow-walking drilling permits, according to the Institute for Energy Research.

The President continues to stall on the Keystone pipeline, while threatening layers of expensive carbon dioxide and other regulations, to prevent what he insists is “dangerous manmade climate change.” His EPA just adopted California’s expensive all-pain-no-gain rules for sulfur in gasoline, and the Administration and environmentalists constantly look to the West Coast for policy guidance.

poweroutageGovernor Jerry Brown says 30 million vehicles in California translate into “a lot of oil” and “the time for no more oil drilling” will be when its residents “can get around without using any gasoline.” However, that rational message has not reached the state’s legislators, environmental activists, or urban elites.

California’s ruling classes strongly oppose drilling and fracking – and leading Democrats are campaigning hard to impose at least a long temporary ban, based on ludicrous claims that fracking causes groundwater contamination and even earthquakes and birth defects.

Meanwhile, California’s oil production represents just 38% of its needs – and is falling steadily, even though the state has enormous onshore and offshore natural gas deposits, accessible via conventional and hydraulic fracturing technologies. The state imports 12% of its oil from Alaska and 50% more from foreign nations, much of it from Canada, notes Sacramento area energy consultant Tom Tanton.

The record is far worse when it comes to electricity. The Do-As-I-Say state imports about 29% of its total electricity from out of state: via the Palo Verde nuclear power plant in Phoenix, coal-fired generators in the Four Corners area, and hydroelectric dams in the Southwest and Pacific Northwest, Tanton explains.

Another 50% of its electricity is generated using natural gas that is also imported from sources outside California. Instead, the Greener-Than-Thou State relies heavily on gas imported via pipelines from Canada, the Rockies and the American Southwest, to power its gas-fired turbines. Those turbines and out-of-state sources also back up its numerous unreliable bird-killing wind turbines.

It adds up to a great way to preen and strut about their environmental consciousness. They simply leach off their neighbors for 62% of their gasoline and 79% of their electricity, and let other states do the hard work and emit the CO2.

These foreign fuels power the state’s profitable and liberal Silicon Valley and entertainment industries – as well as the heavily subsidized electric and hybrid vehicles that wealthy elites so love for their pseudo-ecological benefits, $7,500 tax credits, and automatic entry into fast-moving HOV lanes.

Meanwhile, California’s poor white, black, Hispanic, and other families get to pay $4.23 per gallon for regular gasoline, the second highest price in America – and 16.2 cents per kWh for residential electricity, double that in most states, and behind only New York, New England, Alaska, and Hawaii.

However, the state’s eco-centric ruling classes are not yet satisfied. Having already hammered large industrial facilities with costly CO2 cap-and-trade regulations, thereby driving more jobs out of the state, on January 1, 2015, they will impose cap-and-trade rules on gasoline and diesel fuels. That will instantly add at least 12 cents more per gallon, with the price escalating over the coming years.

CARCULTURERegulators are also ginning up tough new “low-carbon fuel standards,” requiring that California’s transportation fuels reduce their “carbon intensity” or “life-cycle” CO2 emissions by 10% below 2010 levels. This will be accomplished by forcing refiners and retailers to provide more corn-based ethanol, biodiesel, and still-nonexistent cellulosic biofuel.

These fuels are much more expensive than even cap-tax-and-trade gasoline – which means the poor families that liberals care so deeply about will be forced to pay still more to drive their cars and trucks.

In fact, Charles River Associates estimates that the LCFS will raise the cost of gasoline and diesel by up to 170% (!) over the next 10 years, on top of all the other price hikes.

In the meantime, China, India, Brazil, Indonesia, Germany, and a hundred other countries are burning more coal, driving more cars, and emitting vastly more carbon dioxide. So the alleged benefits to global atmospheric CO2 levels range from illusory and fabricated to fraudulent.

Of course, commuters who cannot afford these soaring prices can always park their cars and add a few hours to their daily treks, by taking multiple buses to work, school and other activities.

There’s more, naturally. Much more. But I’m out of space and floundering amid all the lunacy.

Can we really afford to inflict California’s insane policies on the rest of America? In fact, how long can the Left Coast afford to let its ruling classes inflict those policies on its own citizens?

About the Author: Paul Driessen

Paul Driessen

Paul Driessen is senior policy adviser for the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT), which is sponsoring the All Pain No Gain petition against global-warming hype. He also is a senior policy adviser to the Congress of Racial Equality and author of Eco-Imperialism: Green Power – Black Death.

Florida Public Service Commission to the Disabled – Get a Lawyer and Sue Us!

As reported here earlier, the Florida Public Service Commission (FPSC) has rejected all arguments of health, safety and privacy in our protest of the Florida Power & Light (FP&L) smart meter and FP&Ls Non-Standard Meter extortion fees. The FPSC has determined that they will only allow costs issues to go forward into the hearings set for September. In our Petition for Reconsideration, we requested that they at least consider medical exemptions to be heard as a term and condition of the tariff.

Specifically we wrote:

Petitioners also believe the Commission overlooked the evidence provided through public comments received in this case, as well as some of the Martin Petitioners claims, which cite doctors advice to avoid RF radiation. The Petitioners believe adequate evidence exists in this case, which was overlooked by the Commission, to require a determination as to whether medical exemptions due to existing medical conditions or medical implants, should be required. Considering special provisions for medical reasons is not outside the scope of this proceeding. The Petitioners note that such considerations have been addressed in the past with matters such as collection tariffs where customers utilizing certain medical equipment are afforded special provisions.

In addition Petitioners ask the Commission to reconsider the American With Disabilities Act (“ADA”) dispute raised, which was not addressed. By the nature of utilizing a postpone list FP&L effectually granted an accommodation to those requesting the meter not be installed or be removed under the ADA laws. By the Commission approving this tariff which requires a penalty charge for refusal of the smart meter, without any consideration for medical exemptions, the approved tariff violates the ADA rights of the disabled to that accommodation, without charge and without retaliation or coercion.

Yesterday, the Florida Public Service Commission Staff submitted their recommendation to the Commission on the Petition’s for Reconsideration.  Regarding those disabled or with notes from doctors to avoid wireless and RF radiation they state:

With regard to ADA compliance terms and conditions, customers of FPL who believe that the terms and conditions of the NSMR tariff violate their ADA rights are able to sue in federal district court for both exemption from the tariff and recovery of any monetary damages incurred as a result of the violations of the ADA. Neither the Commission nor any other state agency is the proper forum for the relief that the Protestors appear to be seeking.

It is simply amazing that the staff of the Public Service Commission would write this stuff. Many FP&L customers are legally disabled with multiple conditions and have doctor’s notes stating to avoid wireless and they tell them to go sue! Problem is – when you are disabled, you are usually poor. They know this. Perhaps there is an attorney out there with some compassion that would be willing to take this on.

Notice they avoid the doctors note and medical exemption argument altogether. That is how they operate. They ignore things that they don’t have an answer for.

The Commission rules on this issue on May 9th in their Agenda Conference. If you have some compassion for others, tell them what you think. Do you agree? Can the Commission have authority to mandate a product and then not allow a medical exemption for those whose doctors tell them to avoid that product? You can voice your opinion with the Commission at  http://www.floridapsc.com/consumers/complaints/index2.aspx.

Ouch! Washington Post Calls Keystone XL Delays, “Embarrassing”

The Washington Post editorial board excoriated the Obama administration for holding up the Keystone XL pipeline [emphasis mine]:

If foot-dragging were a competitive sport, President Obama and his administration would be world champions for their performance in delaying the approval of the Keystone XL pipeline.

Last Friday afternoon, the time when officials make announcements they hope no one will notice, the State Department declared that it is putting off a decision on Keystone XL indefinitely — or at least, it seems, well past November’s midterm elections. This time, the excuse is litigation in Nebraska over the proposed route, because that might lead to a change in the project that various federal agencies will want to consider. The State Department might even decide to substantially restart the environmental review process. This is yet another laughable reason to delay a project that the federal government has been scrutinizing for more than five years.

As for the pipeline’s routing, planners and regulators have already considered all sorts of options through Nebraska, and they already shifted the route once. Neither route posed environmental concerns of a sort that would justify concluding that Keystone XL is outside the national interest. It is bizarre to imagine that a new route from an even more careful process in Nebraska would significantly increase environmental concerns.

The administration’s latest decision is not responsible; it is embarrassing. The United States continues to insult its Canadian allies by holding up what should have been a routine permitting decision amid a funhouse-mirror environmental debate that got way out of hand. The president should end this national psychodrama now, bow to reason, approve the pipeline and go do something more productive for the climate.

That will leave a mark.

Along with that scathing editorial, the American Petroleum Institute released a poll of registered voters that shows 70% support building the Keystone XL pipeline. Here are some other findings:

  • 78% agree that the pipeline would improve America’s energy security by helping to create jobs.
  • 78% believe that the pipeline is in America’s national interest because it would increase North American oil supplies.
  • 67% say that if the United States has to import oil, they would like to see more of it come from Canada rather than other foreign countries.
  • 68% say they’re more likely to support a candidate who supports the pipeline.

UPDATE: This political cartoon illustrates how these delays have become a farce.

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[via memeorandum]

Follow Sean Hackbarth on Twitter at @seanhackbarth and the U.S. Chamber at @uschamber.

EDITORS NOTE: The features photo of sections of pipe for the southern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline in Oklahoma in 2013 was taken by photographer Daniel Acker/Bloomberg.

Updated Status of the Climate Change Fraud

McCarthy testifies before a Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing on her nomination to be administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency

Gina McCarthy, EPA

Happy Earth Day! Heck, Happy Earth Week!! Gina McCarthy, Chief Protector of the Environmental Protection Agency, is engaged in a week of traveling the USA – five cities in all – “to ask Americans to act on climate change through simple actions to reduce carbon pollution in their daily lives.” In case you were planning to fly to five cities to celebrate Earth Week, don’t. Take Gina’s advice – not her example. Incidentally, Gina flies home to Boston most weekends to be with her family.

Earth Week is wonderful because it makes so many people happy. The Greenies and Alarmists are happy because they get to do something to save the planet. We skeptics are happy because we get to watch the ridiculous, hypocritical, foolish things they do that they think will save the planet. This week their obvious hypocrisy and stupidity illustrate the weakening of their Climate Change fraud.

To start things off,  President Obama, late on Friday afternoon, decided to delay yet again a decision on the Keystone XL (KXL) pipeline, until after the November midterm elections. Tom Steyer, the billionaire hedge fund manager, who has pledged $100 million to support Democrat politicians who oppose KXL, was jubilant. Warren Buffet, an Obama supporter, whose BNSF railroad carries oil from Alberta to the Gulf, was pleased. Mr. Steyer has also pledged additional millions for the Obama Presidential Library. Nothing could better illuminate the venality of the Obama administration and the Democrat Party.

Working men and women, however, hoping for the 40,000 jobs the pipeline would create, were not as pleased. “This is once again politics at its worst,” said Terry O’Sullivan, general president of the Laborers’ International Union of North America.“In another gutless move, the administration is delaying a finding on whether the pipeline is in the national interest based on months-old litigation in Nebraska regarding a state level challenge to a state process — and which has nothing to with the national interest.”

I’m sorry for the members of O’Sullivan’s union – which twice endorsed Obama for president, claiming he would “work to create jobs.” Pretty obvious who Obama works for, and that the “climate change” fraud is a weapon against the American middle class – whose median wealth is now second to the Canadian middle class. That’s why the latest Gallup poll shows increasing skepticism and decreasing belief. Since 2001, the number of the deeply skeptical has doubled; the number of “concerned believers” (Gallup’s term) has remained the same; the “mixed middle” group has lost about 10% – all of whom have joined us, the skeptics. None have joined Gore, Obama, the IPCC, and the other alarmists. There’s a reason for that.

gallup

Remember the TV Showtime documentary, Years of Living Dangerously, airing on Sunday evenings? I wrote about the first episode a week ago, pointing out that drought in West Texas is not convincing proof of “climate change.” The second episode aired this week; it failed to make the top 100 cable shows, and was beaten in its time-slot by a rerun of the animated cartoon, Bob’s Burgers. Yikes! Showtime spent $20 million on this turkey, directed by James Cameron. The emotional appeal doesn’t seem to be working.

subsidiesFinancially, you’ll be happy to know our Federal Government is spending less of your tax dollars on subsidies for wind power farms. The bird lovers among us will be pleased that fewer raptors and song birds are being sliced and diced. From Investors’ Business Daily:

The federal government has spent some $100 billion in taxpayer subsidies on green energy since 2006. Now we are seeing the flimsy and declining returns on that investment.

The wind industry saw its growth tumble by 92% last year, according to a new report from the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), and that’s off of a very low base to begin with.

Big Wind blames the decline in output on uncertainty over the future of a federal wind industry tax credit — an absurdly generous subsidy of 2.3 cents per kilowatt hour produced.

This handout is what keeps those giant turbines twirling. These subsidies have been thrown at the renewable energy industry for more than a decade and always with the promise by AWEA that profitability is right around the corner. Sure it is.

The reality is that the wind industry is to energy production what Amtrak is to intercity transportation — a perpetual tax-dollar burning machine.

Read More At Investor’s Business Daily

yalenewsFrom its dreadful effects on the working middle class to the subsidies it steals from our pockets, the “climate change” fraud has been a disaster. But perhaps its greatest failure has been its absurd catechizing in the halls of higher education, among those with the most advanced educations. For example, from The Yale News, dated 21 April:

Parts of ancient Antarctica were as warm as today’s California coast, and polar regions of the southern Pacific Ocean registered 21st-century Florida heat, according to scientists using a new way to measure past temperatures.

Led by scientists at Yale, the study focused on Antarctica during the Eocene epoch, 40-50 million years ago, a period with high concentrations of atmospheric CO2 and consequently a greenhouse climate.

Merciful Heavens! 50 million years ago, Antarctica, like India and Australia, was an island continent in the South Atlantic, 2000 miles from the South Pole. Northern hemisphere continents were also dispersed away from the North Pole. Ocean currents flowed freely across the poles; major mountain ranges had not arisen. For these and other reasons, world climate was much warmer and more equable. Apparently there are senior editors at the Yale News who are unaware of continental drift, the foundation of modern geology. Faculty adviser? Let’s hope not.  The effect of the climate change fraud has been to dumb down science education, even at the highest levels. Unquestioning acceptance of authority is deadly to science.

We should be grateful for blessings – even small blessings. Vladimir Putin is helping convince even the most fervent believers in “climate change” that there are worse things. Michael Fallon says yesterday was the kickoff in development of shale gas in the UK. Who’s Michael Fallon? He’s the UK Minister for Energy and Climate Change!  Even politicians can sometimes see the light – if the threat to reelection is strong enough.

Florida: Not one of America’s top Energy Leaders

Free Enterprise reports:

Thanks to surging production in the country’s oil and gas shale regions, the U.S. is importing significantly less oil and bolstering its energy independence. The Energy Information Agency expects U.S. crude imports this year to average 6.7 million barrels a day, down by nearly a million barrels a day from 2013 averages. The decline comes amid a boom in oil and gas production in places such as North Dakota, where monthly output has nearly quadrupled over the past four years.

Renewables are also pulling more weight. Last year, wind generated more than 168,000 thousand megawatt hours of electricity, and solar power currently generates almost 9,000 thousand megawatt hours of electricity to power our economy annually. All of this new domestic generation is strengthening the country’s energy security, prompting the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Institute for 21st Century Energy to lower its Index of U.S. Energy Security Risk to 95.3 last year, down from 102 the year before.

From Texas — which takes top honors as the country’s top oil, natural gas, and wind producer — to hydro-power leader Washington state, our info-graphic showcases America’s resilient energy industry by highlighting the top energy-producing states for each energy source.

America

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is courtesy of photographer Ron Antonelli/Bloomberg.

Mandated by the State: Smart Meters and Obamacare

I a Florida homeowner and careful about my usage of electricity. My electric bill last month was $41.56. People buying health insurance choose their plans carefully as well to fulfill their health needs and economic situation. If I am forced to pay a fine of $13 for not doing anything it would result in a 31% monthly increase in my electric cost for no logical reason.

Florida Power & Light (FP&L) has spent hundreds of millions of dollars to install what they refer to as “smart meters” on the properties they service. They require all of their customers to allow installation or face a monthly fine for what they refer to as opting to a “non-standard” meter. The Federal Government put together Obamacare and now forces all who have their standard health insurance plans the government describes as non-standard to scrap them and comply with what the government wants or face a fine.

The meter on my home was here when I bought it ten years ago so did I buy a home with a non-standard meter? My meter is no more non-standard than millions of the people who are being forced off their insurance plans because the government says they know what is best for consumers. Where the Supreme Court says it is all right to tax people for not having government mandated insurance the PSC says it is fine for FPL to tax conscientious homeowners who choose to keep their standard meter.

Just as there are all kinds of bad things being unveiled about Obamacare and the havoc it has caused the new meters from FP&L are like what Pelosi said about Obamacare… you have to install it to find out what it is all about and I and many thousands of others are not interested.

See the similarity in how citizens are being mandated to do what the government or monopoly demands. Is that right?

If there are any sane people in the state government would you please intercede with the PSC and eliminate the mandatory sign up for the FP&L meter or face monthly fines?