One of the important economic truths we who pay attention to markets have learned is the government should never be involved in picking economic winners and losers. It’s doomed to failure and it is even more doomed when driven by politics – which usually ignores reality for utopian visions they try to pay for with your money.
The recent utopian dream shared by the left and our leftists in government has been “clean energy”. Like wind turbines and solar. Why? Well it would help create a much more clean and healthy environment where the birds and bees and flowers and trees would all be much happier. And, after all, it is our responsibility to take the necessary steps to protect our wildlife.
According to a study in the Wildlife Society Bulletin, every year 573,000 birds (including 83,000 raptors) and 888,000 bats are killed by wind turbines — 30 percent higher than the federal government estimated in 2009, due mainly to increasing wind power capacity across the nation.[i] This is likely an underestimate because these estimates were based on 51,630 megawatts of installed wind capacity in the United States in 2012 and wind capacity has grown since then to 65,879 megawatts. And, at one solar power plant in California, an estimated 3,500 birds died in just the plant’s first year of operation.[ii]
Oh wait, that’s not supposed to happen! And when it does, don’t the leftist environmental groups go batsh*t crazy (no pun intended).
I mean look how they were when oil was the culprit killing birds:
Over the past five years, about 2.9 million birds were killed by wind turbines. That compares to about 800,000 birds that a Mother Jones Blog estimated to have been killed by the BP oil spill that occurred in April 2010[iii]—5 years ago–despite not all of them showing visible signs of oil. Nevertheless, BP was fined $100 million for killing and harming migratory birds due to that oil spill. In comparison, the nation’s wind turbines killed more than 3 times the number of birds than did the BP oil spill over the past 5 years. And, wind turbines routinely kill federally protected birds and eagles.
Why I’m sure there have been protests and all by environmentalists haven’t there? And media coverage! I mean I remember watching hours of oil soaked bird footage on CNN and the other networks. Where’s the outrage? And where is the fines for this gross violation of all the leftist environmentalists hold sacred? Why isn’t the federal government stepping in and doing something?
Oh, they did? Boy, did they:
The Obama Administration on December 9, 2013, finalized a regulation that allows wind energy companies and others to obtain 30-year permits to kill eagles without prosecution by the federal government. The American Bird Conservancy filed suit in federal court against the Department of the Interior, charging it with multiple violations of federal law. [viii] Nonetheless, the Shiloh IV Wind Project in California, for example, received a permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service allowing it to kill eagles, hawks, peregrine falcons, owls and songs birds while not being subjected to the normal prohibitions afforded under the federal Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act and the Migratory Treaty Act.[ix]
Now that, my friends, is truly outrageous. Different standards for different industries – one fined at the first ruffled feather because it is the unfavored industry, and the other given a license to slaughter what we all believed to be “protected species”.
Your government at work, picking winners and losers and excusing the winners from adhering to the law. Special treatment. Is that equal treatment under the law?
Well of course not … but it is how banana republics do things.
Consider yourself a climate skeptic? Well that’s dangerous ground if the new fascists have their way. And who are these fascists? Why a group of 20 Attorney Generals from blue states. The Federalist Society has the goods:
The twenty Democratic AGs’ (“Green 20”) concerted investigation against ExxonMobil (Exxon) and organizations deemed “climate change deniers” represents a threat to core constitutional commands of free speech, limited and constitutional government and the rule of law. This latest incarnation of regulation by litigation which seeks to punish climate change wrongthink has crossed a line that lies at the core of the First Amendment—a government imposing its orthodoxy upon its citizens. Declaring the need for “transformational” action on climate change as a settled question, Virgin Islands’ AG, Claude Earl Walker, announced, “We cannot continue to rely on fossil fuel. Vice President Gore has made that clear.” (Glad that’s all settled!)
As the United States Supreme court has noted: “If there is any fixed star in our constitutional constellation, it is that no official, high or petty, can prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion, or other matters of opinion.” Further, punishing Exxon for its own research that expresses concern about climate change disincentivizes research and development and criminalizes the expressions of doubts, theories and concerns that are essential to the scientific method.
So, as others try to paint them as the “Green 20”, I’ll call them what they are – the Fascist 20. They are the very definition of fascists, or at least this part of the definition – “
You may roll your eyes at the latter part but isn’t their goal precisely that, i.e. deciding what industries is acceptable and which aren’t? And attacking those which “aren’t”. First it was the tobacco industry. That worked. So now, using the same sort of tactics and laws, they’re going after the fossil fuel industry, climate skeptics and anyone else they rope into this gaggle they want to eliminate.
This can also be likened to the Inquisition since it is clear, to many, that the “science” of climate alarmism has now become a religion, and it is time, since they can’t prove their point scientifically, to go after the heretics who are badly damaging their scam/religion.
If you don’t think that’s the case, consider this:
The tone taken by these attorneys general at their March 29th press conference with Al Gore reveals all. The calculated hysteria whipped up by Gore’s linkage of natural disasters and the spread of the Zika virus to climate change, was followed by the state AGs startling descriptors of their quarry—“morally vacant forces,” destroyers of this earth, planet destroyers, existential threats, deceivers! Walker announced his offices launch of “an investigation into a company that we believe must provide us with information about what they knew about climate change, and when they knew it,” a catchy formulation that was a verbatim echo of NY AG Schneiderman’s tone of climate McCarthyism.
This vituperative language calls into question these regulators impartiality and professional ethics and rises to abuse of the powers of the office of attorney general. Gore thrummed a bass-line of “fraud” and sensationalized recent weather news as “a nature hike through the Book of Revelation.” Somehow the rise of new diseases that Gore never heard of when he was growing up can be attributed to fossil fuel use (junk science, anyone?). NY AG Schneiderman closed the news conference with a litany of billions and billions of dollars of damage.
This is indeed, junk science and an attempt to use the authority of the law to both intimidate and silence those who find both the science and the arguments of the climate hysterics to be badly wanting.
This is a big “no-go” in terms of how this country is supposed to work. But we now have government agents as, basically, hit men, out to ensure the bosses agenda gets followed. And, obviously, they’ll stoop to any level, to include fascism, to get that job done.
Land of the free …?
Yeah, feast your eyes.
This is just something that shouldn’t be “discussed” at all, much less “discussed” by law enforcement:
During Lynch’s testimony at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) said that he believes there are similarities between the tobacco industry denying scientific studies showing the dangers of using tobacco and companies within the fossil fuel industry denying studies allegedly showing the threat of carbon emissions…
Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.)… concluded his comments by posing a question to the country’s top law enforcement officer.
“My question to you is, other than civil forfeitures and matters attendant to a criminal case, are there other circumstances in which a civil matter under the authority of the Department of Justice has been referred to the FBI?” he asked.
“This matter has been discussed. We have received information about it and have referred it to the FBI to consider whether or not it meets the criteria for which we could take action on,” Lynch answered. “I’m not aware of a civil referral at this time.”
Seriously? As flawed as the data is and as broken as the models have been shown to be, there is certainly nothing “settled” about anything to do with “global warming” or carbon. Nothing.
But that’s not the point is it? This is about shutting up dissent. And why would anyone want to shut up dissent? Well, frankly, for the usual reasons – power and control. You have a group of true believers (or at least those who claim to be) who have positions of power and want to use it to control how you live your life. They’ve been looking for a way for quite some time and have finally, thanks to Al Gore and the boys, found what they believe is a fail-safe way to kite more money from taxpayers and “evil corporations” and they can’t stand to have a group out there shooting their “science” in the keister with facts. The “electricity rates are going to jump under my plan” ideologues aren’t going to pass up this chance to cripple the fossil fuel industry and they have just the pseudo-science with which to do it if they can shut these dissenters up.
Thus a US Congressman questioning the nation’s chief law enforcement officer about whether or not that officer is discussing means and methods of doing just that. If every anyone deserved to be impeached and thrown out of Congress, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse is the candidate of choice in my estimation. And to be Number 1, you have to be pretty damn bad (we could instead settle for a little tar and feathers and running him out of town, I suppose). As I see it, any call to quash dissent by a government official acting in his official capacity is grounds for removal – unless you’re in Communist China, perhaps.
Power and control. That’s what this is all and it is why there is anger and frustration on both sides of the political spectrum. People have had it with both sides.
Actually, we have a few QOTD and most come from Dr. John Cristy who recently gave testimony in a Congressional hearing to detail why satellite-derived temperatures are much more reliable indicators of warming than surface thermometers. You can read his full testimony here.
The quote I’m referring too, however, goes to the heart of this matter like no other. It gets to the reason so many who are skeptical continue to doubt the validity of the alarmist’s theory.
“It is a bold strategy in my view to actively promote the output of theoretical climate models while attacking the multiple lines of evidence from observations,” Christy wrote. “Note that none of the observational datasets are perfect and continued scrutiny is healthy, but when multiple, independent groups generate the datasets and then when the results for two completely independent systems (balloons and satellites) agree closely with each other and disagree with the model output, one is left scratching one’s head at the decision to launch an offensive against the data.”
Even more to the point was this:
“Following the scientific method of testing claims against data, we would conclude that the models do not accurately represent at least some of the important processes that impact the climate because they were unable to “predict” what has already occurred. In other words, these models failed at the simple test of telling us “what” has already happened, and thus would not be in a position to give us a confident answer to “what” may happen in the future and “why.” As such, they would be of highly questionable value in determining policy that should depend on a very confident understanding of how the climate system works.”
“Highly questionable value” is an understatement.
The predictions, as they’ve proven themselves, are useless for determining policy. They. Are. Wrong! Christy has a number of other charts available at the “full testimony” link, which point out how wildly wrong the climate models are. They’re not even close. Meanwhile, the scientists who have based their science in data vs. obviously incorrect models are the one’s that are the one’s under fire, with alarmists going so far as to call for their jailing for disagreeing with them.
Bottom line, it all comes down to the Richard P. Feynman quote that’s been flying around the net lately – “It doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn’t matter how smart you are. If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong.” And, as we’ve pointed out, the observable data simply doesn’t support the theory.
Not that it will stop particular ideologically driven politicians from doing what they want to do in this regard:
A few weeks ago, a group of 13 prominent environmental law professors and attorneys released a 91-page report outlining this new approach, which would allow EPA to use existing laws to quickly and efficiently regulate all pollution sources, in all states — not just power plants and cars. The experts concluded, “It could provide one of the most effective and efficient means to address climate change pollution in the United States.”
Or, put another way, one of the largest power grabs in US history and certainly nothing beyond the man in the White House.
But, you know, damn the facts, full ideological speed ahead for him. It’s never been about science with him, it’s always been about ideology and power.
Mostly because of its liberty stifling oppression:
California Attorney General Kamala Harris has joined New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman in trying to prosecute ExxonMobil for supposedly lying to its shareholders and the public about climate change, according to the Los Angeles Times. The Times reported that Harris is investigating what ExxonMobil “knew about global warming and what the company told investors.”
Neither Harris nor Schneiderman recognizes the outrageousness of what they are doing—which amounts censoring or restricting speech and debate on what is a contentious scientific theory. In fact, they want not just to stop anyone who questions the global warming theory from being able to speak; they want to punish them with possible civil sanctions or even criminal penalties. As I said before about Schneiderman, Harris needs a remedial lesson in the First Amendment.
Perhaps we should investigate what Harris “knows” about global warming or climate change, which Harris (and Schneiderman) treats as if it is a proven, unassailable, incontrovertible fact. However, as the Heritage Foundation’s Nicolas Loris has pointed out, “flaws discovered in the scientific assessment of climate change have shown that the scientific consensus is not as settled as the public had been led to believe.”
In fact, what Harris and Schneiderman are doing is treating the “contentious scientific theory” as a proven fact. It isn’t even close to being proven and instead a very believable assembly of facts to the contrary has made the ‘theory’ seem more like a religion than a reality. John Cleese … John Cleese for heaven sake … said it best:
So why is government so insistent that the world is heating up? Why does it show this bias … and bias it is. Roy Spencer notes:
I’m not claiming our satellite dataset is necessarily the best global temperature dataset in terms of trends, even though I currently suspect it is closer to being accurate than the surface record — that will be for history to decide. The divergence in surface and satellite trends remains a mystery, and cannot (in my opinion) continue indefinitely if both happen to be largely correct.
But since the satellites generally agree with (1) radiosondes and (2) most global reanalysis datasets (which use all observations radiosondes, surface temperatures, commercial aircraft, satellites, etc. everything except the kitchen sink), I think the fact that NOAA-NASA essentially ignores it reveals an institutional bias that the public who pays the bills is becoming increasingly aware of.
Because there are large … very large … wads of taxpayers money at stake. There is the UN’s chance to redistribute the wealth, a dream the Third-World Debating Club has harbored for decades. So alarmism remains the way in which governments and the UN try to peddle their product.
And, as Dr. Spencer says, the public, who pays the bills, “is becoming increasingly aware of” the bias and the fact that the alarmists have yet to prove their point, to wit:
Thermometers Still Disagree with Models …that even if 2015 is the warmest on record, and NOAA has exactly the right answer, it is still well below the average forecast of the IPCC’s climate models, and something very close to that average forms the basis for global warming policy. In other words, even if every successive year is a new record, it matters quite a lot just how much warming we are talking about.
Oh, and about that 2015 being the warmest year on record, again, the data doesn’t support the claim:
We now have the official NOAA-NASA report that 2015 was the warmest year by far in the surface thermometer record. John and I predicted this would be the case fully 7 months ago, when we called 2015 as the winner.
Oh my … and El Nino was kickin’ this past year, wasn’t it? In fact, per Spencer “El Nino …that a goodly portion of the record warmth in 2015 was naturally induced, just as it was in previous record warm years.” Or said another way, the warmth was due to a weather event, not global warming.
But of course, the incurious press ran with the headline of the “warmest year evah!” and now governments of California and New York are on record of considering certain speech which doesn’t support the government line to be punishable under the law.
So what do we have going on in the two states? Something we thought was dead and buried:
These investigations are reminiscent of the old Soviet Union, where Joseph Stalin persecuted those who he thought had the “wrong” scientific views on everything from linguistics to physics. Besides sending them a copy of the Constitution so they can review the First Amendment, residents of both New York and California might also want to include a copy of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s book, “In the First Circle,” in which he outlined the Soviet government’s suppression of dissenting scientists and engineers.
And that’s precisely the problem here. This, to us old timers, is precisely how the Soviet Union (and China) operated. Of course it made no difference in the reality of science. What is, is. But it certainly made a difference in the lives of those who were persecuted by the state because they disagreed with the State’s version of science.
The bottom line is that the state attorneys general of New York and California are not acting like level-headed, objective prosecutors interested in the fair and dispassionate administration of justice. They are instead acting like Grand Inquisitors who must stamp out any heresy that doubts the legitimacy of the climate change religion. They are treating an unproven scientific theory as if it is a creed than cannot be questioned, probed, examined, or doubted.
Indeed. Welcome to the USSA.
We’ve been offered all sorts of nonsense about the importance of battling climate change. Lately the meme has been that ISIS is a result of climate change (even though, for the past 10 years, the climate hasn’t changed). We’ve been treated to all sorts of theories masquerading as “proof” that climate change is real. We’ve watched the alarmists ignore contrary data and continue to tell their big lie.
Why? How does the lie survive as an actual movement?
Well, for one thing, there is a 100 billion dollars at risk, offered by the apparently guilt-ridden alarmists of the West, and the “third world” isn’t about to let that get away. It is about global income redistribution. All you have to do is look at who lines up on what side. India and China, for instance, insist they are “third world” and by George, they want a piece of that 100 billion. So they become willing participants in this lie, not because they necessarily believe any of it, but because there’s a pay-off.
Do they plan to actually do anything to mitigate CO2 production? Uh, not really. And they’re not the only ones:
More than 2,400 coal-fired power stations are under construction or being planned around the world, a study has revealed two weeks after Britain pledged to stop burning coal. The new plants will emit 6.5 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide a year and undermine the efforts at the Paris climate conference to limit global warming to 2C. China is building 368 plants and planning a further 803, according to the study by four climate change research bodies, including Ecofys and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. India is building 297 and planning 149. Rich countries are also planning new coal plants. The nuclear disaster at Fukushima has prompted Japan to turn back to coal, with 40 plants in the pipeline and five under construction.
Here it is in graphic form:
In other words, no one is really serious at all about reducing CO2 – except the guilt-ridden, “white privilege” shamed Westerners who are more than happy to use their dubious “science” and your money to assuage their guilt. And of course, the “third world” who is quite happy to take advantage of that guilt, and your money, while ignoring the supposed “problem” completely – well, other than talking the talk. They have no intention of walking the walk.
The big lie, told often enough, becomes “the truth” … if you let it.
This, however, is just a lie fashioned to take your money and give it to others your imperial rulers deem “more deserving”.
Because, you see, air-conditioning uses HFCs and she’s convinced that banning them would help lower the global temperature and fight global warming – you know, the pseudo-science that has proven to be unproven … in fact, almost everything the alarmists predicted would happen hasn’t and everything that wouldn’t happen has.
But when you’re really in the redistribution of income business any narrative, no matter how discredited, will do:
EPA Chief Gina McCarthy wants the world to stop using hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in air conditioners and other consumers products as part of President Barack Obama’s plan to fight global warming.
McCarthy is so determined to make this happen, she’s taking the lead role at an ongoing United Nations summit to expand the current global treaty covering ozone-depleting substances. The EPA chief hopes that her agency’s recent HFC regulations will convince other countries to join the U.S. in limiting the chemicals.
“Because of the importance of taking aggressive action on these chemicals to achieve global climate goals, I will be leading the United States delegation at that meeting,” McCarthy wrote in an oped for The Guardian.
“Over the past year, the US Environmental Protection Agency has completed four separate actions that both expand the list of safer alternatives to HFCs and prohibit them from certain uses in the refrigeration air conditioning, foam, and aerosol sectors where safer alternatives such as hydrofluoroolefins (HFOs), hydrocarbons and lower-polluting blends are available,” McCarthy wrote.
“Solutions are here, and it’s time to amend the Montreal Protocol to reflect that,” McCarthy wrote, adding that phasing out HFCs would avert 0.5 degrees Celsius of global warming by the end of the century.
Total nonsense, of course. And, a rhetorical question – who will something like this hurt most? That’s right, those who can least afford it. This is politics marching to the tune of a bankrupt ideology. HFO’s cost more than HFCs. HFCs, by the way, do not deplete the ozone layer and as real science has shown, greenhouse gasses are not having the warming effect on the earth that the “science” of the alarmists have claimed.
So what’s the point? Zealotry. Zealotry in the service of ignorance simply because she has the power. She “believes” this to be true and thus you will conform if she has her way.
A team of European researchers have unveiled a scientific model showing that the Earth is likely to experience a “mini ice age” from 2030 to 2040 as a result of decreased solar activity.
Their findings will infuriate environmental campaigners who argue by 2030 we could be facing increased sea levels and flooding due to glacial melt at the poles.
How long have we been saying the bulk of our climate is determined by that big yellow burning thing in the sky? You know, the one the alarmists have either ignored or discounted.
Guess who I think has a better chance of being correct in this case?
Bjorn Lomborg thinks it is. In today’s Wall Street Journal, he takes exception with the UN’s continued pushing for a “solution” for “climate change”, formerly known as “global warming”. Lomborg thinks that it ignores the real problems out there and this focus on global warming takes money away from them for what is, at best, a marginal problem.
In a world in which malnourishment continues to claim at least 1.4 million children’s lives each year, 1.2 billion people live in extreme poverty, and 2.6 billion lack clean drinking water and sanitation, this growing emphasis on climate aid is immoral.
For instance, says Lomborg, according to a recent study, if the UN spent .57% ($570 million) of the $100 billion climate-finance goal on mosquito nets to help control malaria, it could reduce malaria deaths by 50% by 2025 and save approximately 300,000 lives.
Instead, the UN is more interested in the world’s largest wealth redistribution scheme. Somehow the scam has rich nations happy to pledge their citizen’s money and poor nations lining up to receive it. How much will actually go toward addressing the real problems Lomborg highlights is anyone’s guess, but if history is to be a guide, not much. There’s a reason the poorer countries are poor and that has much to do with who is in charge.
Anyway, Lomborg points to the obvious, or at least what should be obvious, in terms of this rush to be “green” and what the world (and the UN) could be doing instead:
Providing the world’s most deprived countries with solar panels instead of better health care or education is inexcusable self-indulgence. Green energy sources may be good to keep on a single light or to charge a cellphone. But they are largely useless for tackling the main power challenges for the world’s poor.
According to the World Health Organization, three billion people suffer from the effects of indoor air pollution because they burn wood, coal or dung to cook. These people need access to affordable, reliable electricity today. Yet too often clean alternatives, because they aren’t considered “renewable,” aren’t receiving the funding they deserve.
A 2014 study by the Center for Global Development found that “more than 60 million additional people in poor nations could gain access to electricity if the Overseas Private Investment Corporation”—the U.S. government’s development finance institution—“were allowed to invest in natural gas projects, not just renewables.”
Wow. Electricity. Its been with us for over a century. We all know its benefits. We all know how well its access could help lift those without it out of poverty.
Yet the UN is more interested in chasing the chimera of “global warming” and its unproven science. The reason, of course is power. Money and control equal power. And this scheme with $100 billion changing hands under the auspices of the UN offers undreamed of opportunities for those in the UN to engage in an unprecedented level of graft. There just isn’t the level of opportunity in helping the world’s poor gain electricity.
As you’ve heard many, many times … follow the money.
Solar energy has been touted by those who support its wide use as a completely “clean” way of producing electricity.
But reality gives lie to that claim. Take the Ivanpah plant in the Mojave Desert for example. It sits on 5.6 square miles of mostly undisturbed public land that was home to desert tortoises, a species threatened with extinction, among other wildlife. It fries birds in flight regularly. Environmentalists concerns were ignored.
Why? Because it was an Obama administration priority, whether it is important to anyone else or not.
“With projects like this one, and others across this country, we are staking our claim to continued leadership in the new global economy. And we’re putting Americans to work producing clean, home-grown American energy that will help lower our reliance on foreign oil and protect our planet for future generations.”
Except it not only doesn’t lower our “reliance on … oil”, it is a large user of fossil fuel. Yes, that’s right – it has a huge carbon footprint.
Data from the California Energy Commission show that the plant burned enough natural gas in 2014 – its first year of operation – to emit more than 46,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide.
That’s nearly twice the pollution threshold for power plants or factories in California to be required to participate in the state’s cap-and-trade program to reduce carbon emissions.
The plant, the recipient of $1.6 billion in federal loan guarantees as well as $600 million in tax credits, uses natural gas to preheat water for steam. It is only after the water is preheated that the solar energy is applied to finally produce the steam to turn the generators. And on cloudy days? Yes, all natural gas and nothing but natural gas.
And the enviros? Well, David Lamfrom, desert project manager of the National Parks Conservation Association, is pretty sure this isn’t what they signed up for. He points out that this isn’t a solar project but instead a hybrid project which uses both solar and fossil fuel to generate electricity.
“It feels like a bait and switch,” Lamfrom said. “This project was held up as a model of innovation. We didn’t sign up for greener energy. We signed up for green energy.”
The Obama administration lied about the project? My goodness – the next thing you’ll tell us is “if we like our health insurance we won’t be able to keep it”.
As one might imagine, her opposition comes as somewhat of a surprise:
Her comments made her the last major Democratic presidential candidate to come out against Keystone, a project that has dragged through more than seven years of wrangling and several environmental reviews that appeared to favor the pipeline — most of them produced by the State Department when Clinton was secretary. Obama remains the project’s biggest wildcard: He hasn’t said whether he will grant or deny a permit for the pipeline, or when he’ll decide, even as Republicans lambaste him for repeatedly postponing the issue.
As secretary, Clinton had galvanized a nationwide activist campaign against Keystone with her off-the-cuff remarks in 2010 that the department was “inclined” to approve the $8 billion-plus project. That was her last substantive public statement on the issue until Tuesday.
But then, when poll numbers are sinking and momentum is waning, what better than to flip-flop (when you favor the candidate, it’s called a “pivot”) and throw a bone to a particular core constituency to shore up that vote? Its a move any political opportunist would surely applaud.
Why the Keystone XL pipeline has remained such a political football remains a mystery. All the past routing problems that first held up the pipeline have been satisfactorily resolved. And, after all, there are 2.3 million miles of existing oil and natural gas pipelines in the US. Why has this one remained in the news?
Simple answer? Politics. It’s about voting constituencies and keeping them happy. It certainly isn’t about what is best for the US.
As The Hill points out, it has now officially taken longer for the federal government to review the Keystone XL pipeline’s permit application than it did to build the entire transcontinental railroad 150 years ago.
Amazing and typical. As for the party that continues to tell us it is for jobs and economic growth, it blatantly turns its back on both with its opposition to the pipeline’s approval:
Consider the economic opportunity this $5.4 billion pipeline presents. The Canadian Economic Research Institute estimates it could add $172 billion in U.S. economic growth over 25 years. Meanwhile, President Obama’s own U.S. State Department estimates construction would support over 42,000 jobs. Nearly 10,000 would be skilled—aka, well-paying—jobs like steel welders, pipefitters, electricians, and heavy equipment operators.
There’s also the potential for gas prices to go even lower than they are today. According to a February 2015 report from IHS, a leading energy research firm, the “vast majority” of Keystone XL’s refined oil will stay right here in the U.S. In other words, it could further add to America’s surging oil supply that has sent gas prices plummeting over the past year.
And yes, as mentioned, that’s the US State Department estimate made while Hillary Clinton was SecState.
Environmentalists live with the fantasy that if the Keystone pipeline is blocked, the oil to be found in the oil sands of Canada and in North Dakota will simply have to be left in the ground. Of course, that’s nonsense. Instead is it is shipped by rail, a much less safe and less efficient means of transportation (but one that does amply reward a Democratic donor) than a state of the art pipeline :
This is especially so when you consider pipelines—particularly new, state-of-the-art ones like Keystone XL—are the safest mode of transportation. Ensuring we’re using the safest and most efficient methods possible only makes sense.
Indeed. So, why is Hillary Clinton opposed to safe transportation of oil and gas, the jobs and income that would come from the construction of the pipeline and economic boost it would give our economy?
Perhaps someone will ask her that at the first Democratic debate.
Yeah, I know, I’m laughing too.