Archive for the “Bad Policy” Category
Published May 14, 2013, Associated Press
CONVERSE COUNTY, Wyo. – The Obama administration has never fined or prosecuted a wind farm for killing eagles and other protected bird species, shielding the industry from liability and helping keep the scope of the deaths secret, an Associated Press investigation has found.
More than 573,000 birds are killed by the country’s wind farms each year, including 83,000 hunting birds such as hawks, falcons and eagles, according to an estimate published in March in the peer-reviewed Wildlife Society Bulletin.
Each death is federal crime, a charge that the Obama administration has used to prosecute oil companies when birds drown in their waste pits, and power companies when birds are electrocuted by their power lines. No wind energy company has been prosecuted, even those that repeatedly flout the law.
Read more at Fox News
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Nominee Has Misled on Major Regulations and Is Implicated in Email Scandal
By Competitive Enterprise Institute
Gina McCarthy has decades of experience as an environmental bureaucrat, but a number of factors make her wholly unqualified to serve as EPA Administrator, say experts at the Competitive Enterprise Institute. President Barack Obama nominated McCarthy on Monday to succeed Lisa Jackson to lead EPA.
“As Assistant EPA Administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation, Gina McCarthy has implemented radical environmental policies that will put hundreds of thousands of Americans out of work but do little to nothing to improve environmental quality,” said Myron Ebell, Director of the Center for Energy and Environment at CEI.
“McCarthy has regularly tried to conceal the Obama administration’s economically destructive policies by misleading Congress, the public and industry. She has regularly stonewalled congressional requests for crucial information. And she is up to her ears in the Richard Windsor e-mail scandal,” Ebell said.
Read the rest at Competitive Enterprise Institute.
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Posted by Neilio in Bad Policy, Cause/Effect, ClimateGate, CO2, Extreme weather, Extremists, IPCC, Junk Science, Misguided Leaders, Mythical Consensus, Public Policy, Scaremongering, Science, World Governance
By: Larry Bell
President Obama has put salvation from dreaded climate catastrophes on his action agenda hot list. During his inaugural address he said: “We will respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations.” He went on to shame anyone who disagrees with this assessment, saying, “Some may still deny the overwhelming judgment of science, but none can avoid the devastating impact of raging fires and crippling drought and powerful storms.”
This sort of scary presidential prognostication isn’t new. He previously emphasized at the Democratic National Convention that global warming was “not a hoax”, referred to recent droughts and floods as “a threat to our children’s future”, and pledged to make the climate a second-term priority.
As much as I hate to nit-pick his doomsday scenarios, it might be appropriate to correct a few general misconceptions before getting back to that “overwhelming judgment of science” stuff.
Read the rest at: Forbes
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From Washington Times
President Obama’s green jobs training program, which was part of his stimulus, has failed on most key jobs measures, according to a new internal audit that found it was training workers who already had jobs that didn’t need green energy skills, and was failing to place new enrollees in jobs once they finished the training.
The Labor Department’s inspector general also said grantees who received the green jobs-training money did a poor job of reporting their results.
Only 38 percent of those who have completed training got jobs based on it, and only 16 percent kept jobs for at least six months — the key measure of success for the program.
“Outcomes for participants were far less than originally proposed,” the auditors said.
The government earmarked more than $400 million for green jobs training programs, and $328.5 million has been spent so far.
Read more here.
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From European Voice
Discussions on the European Union’s negotiating position at upcoming UN climate talks ended inconclusively last night (25 October) because of divisions over whether tradeable emissions allowances should be carried over to the next period of the Kyoto Protocol.
The first period of the protocol finishes at the end of the year, and most countries do not want it to be extended. At UN climate talks in Durban last year, the EU agreed to organise a second commitment period effectively on its own, in exchange for other major emitters agreeing to a future climate deal by 2015.
The details of that second commitment period must be worked out at this year’s summit, in Doha. But EU member states are divided on the issue of whether to carry over excess credits (AAUs) from the first period into the second period. Poland is blocking adoption of any EU position that would eliminate these excess credits, a move called for by the G77 group of developing countries and all western European countries.
Opponents of carrying over the credits say it would render a second Kyoto commitment period meaningless, because central and eastern European countries were over-allocated allowances due to their rapid de-industrialisation in the early 1990s.
Read more here.
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By Paul Chesser
Despite a new report out of the United Kingdom that says the future of the business is bleak without government subsidies, a three-year-old unprofitable electric truck company that received $32 million in U.S. taxpayer stimulus plans to raise more money via an initial public offering.
Kansas City-based Smith Electric Vehicles was launched in January 2009, and despite its lack of track record and the inexperience of its leadership, the Department of Energy awarded the company $10 million in August 2009, and an additional $22 million in March 2010, for an electric truck demonstration program. The company was little more than a spinoff of a failed U.K. operation with the same name, owned by a troubled parent company called The Tanfield Group. In July 2008 – largely because of Smith-UK’s shortcomings – Tanfield’s stock price “collapsed” (scroll down at link) and was harming other holdings of its founder, Roy Stanley.
Smith-UK’s electric truck venture, part of the “green” energy economy euphoria that swept Europe, once received praise from luminaries such as former Prime Minister Tony Blair, who called Tanfield “UK manufacturing innovation at its best.” But soon afterward media discovered that customers for the electric trucks were sparse, and investors wondered whether the company was “more hype than reality.”
A study commissioned by the U.K. Department of Transport confirms the industry was unworthy of the publicity it received. British consulting firm Element Energy examined the total costs of ownership of low emission vans, in light of the government’s plans (implemented in February) to extend its Plug-In Car Grant program to electric trucks. It found that for electric trucks to make economic sense, government would need to provide grants indefinitely in order to compete with diesel-powered vehicles.
Read the rest at National Legal and Policy Center.
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The president’s green energy policies don’t add up
By Donald J Bourdreaux
Speaking recently at America’s largest solar energy plant — in Boulder City, Nev. — President Obama insisted that green energy is so important, “You’d think that everybody would be supportive of solar power. And yet, if some politicians have their way, there won’t be any more public investment in solar energy.”
Indeed. And judging from the recent actions of Obama’s Commerce Department, the president himself is among those politicians.
The Commerce Department has decided to impose tariffs ranging from 2.9 percent to 4.73 percent on subsidized Chinese solar panels that are imported into the U.S.
It takes remarkable cheek for Obama to insist that, while American “public investment” in green energy is virtuous, Chinese “public investment” in green energy is vile.
Not that opposition to subsidies for solar and other “green” energies is to be lamented. Quite the opposite. Politicians have no expertise at forecasting consumers’ energy needs or identifying how best to meet those needs. And the fact that the money politicians spend to promote green-energy firms comes from taxpayers further reduces the likelihood that such subsidies will yield positive payoffs for the general public.
In a sane world, Obama would celebrate Beijing’s subsidies to Chinese solar panel exporters. Those subsidies supply Americans with the alleged benefits of artificially low-priced solar panels, but on China’s nickel!
Read the rest at the Daily.
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By Dan Springer
Wind farms in the Pacific Northwest — built with government subsidies and maintained with tax credits for every megawatt produced — are now getting paid to shut down as the federal agency charged with managing the region’s electricity grid says there’s an oversupply of renewable power at certain times of the year.
The problem arose during the late spring and early summer last year. Rapid snow melt filled the Columbia River Basin. The water rushed through the 31 dams run by the Bonneville Power Administration, a federal agency based in Portland, Ore., allowing for peak hydropower generation. At the very same time, the wind howled, leading to maximum wind power production.
Demand could not keep up with supply, so BPA shut down the wind farms for nearly 200 hours over 38 days.
“It’s the one system in the world where in real time, moment to moment, you have to produce as much energy as is being consumed,” BPA spokesman Doug Johnson said of the renewable energy.
Now, Bonneville is offering to compensate wind companies for half their lost revenue. The bill could reach up to $50 million a year.
The extra payout means energy users will eventually have to pay more.
“We require taxpayers to subsidize the production of renewable energy, and now we want ratepayers to pay renewable energy companies when they lose money?” asked Todd Myers, director of the Center for the Environment of the Washington Policy Center and author of “Eco-Fads: How the Rise of Trendy Environmentalism is Harming the Environment.”
Read the rest at Fox News.
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In a speech before the Daimler Trucks North America manufacturing plant in Charlotte, N.C. today, the president delivered his answer to rising gas prices: He wants to increase the $7,500 tax credit for alternative-energy vehicles to $10,000, earmark $1 billion to reward cities that provide infrastructure for such vehicles, earmark an additional $650 million for a research program to increase the range and decrease the price of the vehicles, and repeal $4 billion of tax incentives for oil and gas companies.
Read the rest at Hot Air.
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Investors Business Daily Editorial
Energy: The White House billed President Obama’s energy policy speech as a response to mounting criticism of record high gas prices. What he delivered was a grab bag of excuses and outright falsehoods.
Obama’s main message to struggling motorists was: It’s not my fault, so stop whining. The speech only got worse from there, recycling excuses and myths that Obama’s peddled for years. But there were some standout whoppers that deserve debunking. The five biggest:
“We’re focused on production.”
Fact: While production is up under Obama, this has nothing to do with his policies, but is the result of permits and private industry efforts that began long before Obama occupied the White House.
Obama has chosen almost always to limit production. He canceled leases on federal lands in Utah, suspended them in Montana, delayed them in Colorado and Utah, and canceled lease sales off the Virginia coast.
His administration also has been slow-walking permits in the Gulf of Mexico, approving far fewer while stretching out review times, according to the Greater New Orleans Gulf Permit Index. The Energy Dept. says Gulf oil output will be down 17% by the end of 2013, compared with the start of 2011. Swift Energy President Bruce Vincent is right to say Obama has “done nothing but restrict access and delay permitting.”
“The U.S. consumes more than a fifth of the world’s oil. But we only have 2% of the world’s oil reserves.”
Fact: Obama constantly refers to this statistic to buttress his claim that “we can’t drill our way to lower gas prices.” The argument goes that since the U.S. supply is limited, it won’t ever make a difference to world prices.
Read the rest at Investors Business Daily.
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Washington, D.C. – Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works commented on President Obama’s State of the Union Address.
“President Obama has clearly received the message that his global warming agenda is gone, dead, done with the American people – that’s why he was touting oil and natural gas so much in his State of the Union address tonight,” Senator Inhofe said. “He understands that especially in a weak economy, Americans want the hundreds of thousands of jobs, the affordable energy prices, and the increased energy security that domestic fossil fuel development brings. But while he talks the talk, he is clearly still determined to achieve his global warming agenda by shutting down oil, gas and coal development so that energy prices will, as he said himself, ‘necessarily skyrocket.’
“President Obama congratulated himself tonight on decreasing imports of oil from the Middle East, but failed to mention that his policies of energy austerity, which have caused gasoline prices nearly to double since he took office, are responsible for it. If he is determined, as his Energy Secretary Steven Chu said, to ‘boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe’ he is well on his way to achieving that goal. He claims to care about energy security, yet he stopped the Keystone pipeline – and the 20,000 American jobs it would have created – which would have done more than any other project to increase our energy security and revive our economy.”
Read the rest at the US Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.
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By Doug Powers
Yesterday there was another White House document dump regarding Solyndra’s bankruptcy filing just after the 2010 elections. While Solyndra is the crown jewel in the Department of Energy’s “you can’t make a green omelette without breaking a few hundred million taxpayer eggs” trial-and-error initiative, there are many other examples.
CBS News’ Sharyl Attkisson — who was one of the first reporters on the Solyndra trail — featured 11 other DoE loan recipients that either have or probably will take a Solyndra-style plunge and suck down $6.5 billion of taxpayer loans with them.
Read the rest at Michelle Malkin.
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By Dan Chapman
The failed Range Fuels wood-to-ethanol factory in southeastern Georgia that sucked up $65 million in federal and state tax dollars was sold Tuesday for pennies on the dollar to another bio-fuel maker with equally grand plans to transform the alternative energy world.
LanzaTech, a New Zealand-based biofuel company, paid $5.1 million for the plant in Soperton. Its main financial backer: Vinod Khosla, a California entrepreneur who also bankrolled Range Fuels, and helped secure its government loans, before Range went bust last year.
LanzaTech hasn’t received the same type of loans, but the company has received $7 million from the U.S. departments of Energy and Transportation to assist in the development of alternative fuels.
Read the rest at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution
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By Patrick Moore
Southwestern Ontario’s flourishing wind energy industry came under fire Wednesday from the co-founder of Greenpeace.
Dr. Patrick Moore told more than 1,000 area farmers the industry destroys more jobs than it creates, and causes energy prices to climb for all users.
“The industry is a destroyer of wealth and negative to the economy,” said Moore, speaking at the 19th annual Southwest Agricultural Conference at Ridgetown campus of the University of Guelph.
Moore, who now refers to himself as the “sensible environmentalist,” said the solar bubble has burst and thinks the wind bubble is about to burst.
“I’m happy for the farmers who are receiving royalties for allowing the wind towers to be built on their farms,” he said. “They deserve it — but the cost to consumers will continue to climb — partly because of rate increases and partly due to tax increases.”
Moore said there wouldn’t be wind farms in southwestern Ontario if taxpayers weren’t paying the bill.
Read the rest at Climate Realists.
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By Paul Chesser
Last week Frito-Lay, the $12 billion snack foods division of PepsiCo, boasted it would add 10 all-electric delivery trucks in Orlando, Fla., as part of its plan to deploy 176 such vehicles in the U.S. and Canada by the end of year.
As is custom with corporate announcements that proclaim their eco-accomplishments, so as to pacify persistent climate alarmists, Frito-Lay said the vehicles would emit “zero” pollutants from tailpipes and release 75 percent fewer greenhouse gases than diesel. The ETs (electric trucks) can allegedly run 100 miles on a single charge, and Frito-Lay says the groundbreaking new haulers provide “a long-term economically viable solution” – apparently to solve global warming.
Regular readers of NLPC should know the Chevy Volt sticker price, before the $7,500 tax credit, is $41,000, and for the Nissan Leaf it’s $35,200. So the cost for an electric delivery truck must be somewhat higher, right? And you’d think that Frito-Lay, and any other company that undertakes an electric truck program to meet its distribution needs, would go to great expense for a much heavier and larger electric transporter than the Volt and Leaf, correct?
Not so fast, Sparky.
While it is certainly true the electric trucks (ETs) are more expensive, that doesn’t mean Frito-Lay is footing the bill for them. Yes, astute NLPC reader, you’ve figured out who’s covering the bill: taxpayers.
Read the rest at National Legal and Policy Center.
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