Political Climate
Nov 22, 2016
Dear America, the Developing Nations of the World Thank You

Vijay Jayaraj, MSc, University of East Anglia, Townhall

Democrats, global mainstream media, celebrities, and even some in Republican circles, were totally shocked when Donald Trump emerged victorious in the presidential election.

But there was one group of people who were even more upset - the radical environmentalists who invested millions on climate alarmism based global energy and developmental policies.

A Trump victory has now caused the global warming elites to hit the panic button.

The working middle class people of America were awakened when their jobs started disappearing due to radical regulations on fossil fuel production, and various other manufacturing industries. Barack Obama’s war on coal has left thousands without jobs, and destroyed entire towns.

President-elect Trump has said he will make big changes to U.S. energy policy, and with a Republican majority in the House and Senate, he should be able to keep his word. Ending the Paris agreement and reducing regulations on coal should be top priorities.

But the impact of Trump’s victory will be felt beyond the US. In fact, it has begun to shake the very foundations of the climate alarmist agenda. The market shares responded first, with renewable stocks plunging while the rest of DOW booked a 256-point gain.

Greens’ panic followed. The European Union’s carbon market chief, climate alarmist elites at the current UN climate-event in Marrakech, co-chairs of the European Green Party, leaders of anti-fossil-fuel campaigns, and the French Environment Minister all expressed their concerns regarding the inevitable death of the Paris agreement on climate change.

Not that the Paris agreement was particularly successful anyway. It was more of a PR coup for alarmists than anything else. China has increased its coal production targets for 2020 and India is already on path for a massive increase in its coal production - both countries having already ratified the Paris agreement using makeshift commitments that hardly have any impact on the expansion of their fossil fuel industry. The U.K. and Germany meanwhile have distanced themselves from their proposed agreements to reduce emissions. The Philippines has completely disassociated itself from the Paris agreement.

Trump’s presidency will hopefully contribute towards reestablishing the public’s confidence in the scientific community. Over the last eight years especially, although misuse of power is not a new thing, scientific methodology was undermined and misused to produce preconceived results, especially regarding climate change.

This election has consequences reaching much farther than just across the United States of America. In rejecting radical environmentalism and radical energy policies, American citizens are paving the way for millions of people in developing nations around the world to access clean, affordable, and reliable energy sources.

As a citizen of one of those developing countries, I thank you.

Nov 12, 2016
“Making America great again” requires deep-sixing punitive energy and environmental rules

"Making America great again” requires deep-sixing punitive energy and environmental rules

Paul Driessen

The American people have roundly rejected a third Obama term and legacy of deplorable policies that were too often imposed via executive edicts, with minimal attempts to work with Congress or the states.

This election shows that hard-working Americans do not want their country and its constitutional, energy and economic systems “fundamentally transformed.” They want America to be great and exceptional again. They want all people to live under the same laws and have the same opportunities, rights and responsibilities for making their lives, families, communities and nation better than they found them.

We the People also made it clear that we have had a bellyful of unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats, media moguls and intellectual elites dictating what we can read, think and say, how we may worship, what insurance and doctors can have, what rules, jobs and living standards we must live with.

With the elections over, the truly difficult tasks lie before us. Filling Supreme Court vacancies with jurists who believe in our Constitution, repealing and replacing ObamaCare, reforming the politicized IRS, DOJ and FBI, immigration issues, and fixing the VA and incomprehensible tax code are all high on every list.

However, abundant, reliable, affordable energy remains the foundation of modern civilization, jobs, health and prosperity. So these suggestions for President Trump’s first years focus on critical tasks that can be accomplished by his Executive Branch alone or in conjunction with Congress and the states.

As you read them, thousands of politicians, regulators, scientists and activists are gathered for yet another “climate conference,” this time in Marrakech, Morocco. They are shocked and despondent over the election results, and worried that the Trump Administration won’t support their agenda. They’re right.

Under the guise of preventing “dangerous manmade climate change” and compensating poor countries for alleged “losses and damages” due to climate and weather caused by rich country fossil fuel use, they had planned to control the world’s energy supplies and living standards, replace capitalism with a new UN-centered global economic order, and redistribute wealth from those who create it to those who want it. So:

Job One) Let the assembled delegates and world know America has a president - and a Congress - not a king. Suspend and defund any initiatives and orders issued under the Paris climate treaty, and send it to the Senate for Advice and Consent (and assured rejection) under Article II of the Constitution. Its impacts are so onerous and far-reaching that it is clearly a “treaty” within the meaning of our founding document, even if President Obama prefers to call it a “nonbinding agreement” to avoid Senate review.

2) Review the assertions, models, “homogenized” data, science and research behind the multitude of climate and renewable energy mandates - to see if they reflect Real World empirical evidence. Many, most or all will be found to be biased, wildly exaggerated, faulty, falsified or fraudulent.

The recent listing of polar bears as “endangered” was based on junk science and GIGO computer models that claim manmade global warming will send the bears’ record population numbers into oblivion. EPA’s Clean Power Plan assumes shutting down US coal-fired power plants will stop climate change, even if China, India and other countries build thousands of new coal-fueled generators over the next 20 years.

The all-encompassing “social cost of carbon” scheme attributes every imaginable harm to carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels. It ignores the incredible benefits of carbon-based energy, and dismisses the horrendous impacts that abandoning these fuels would have on human health and welfare.

Every one of these EPA, Interior and other regulatory diktats assumes that CO2 has suddenly replaced the powerful natural forces that have driven climate fluctuations throughout Earth’s history - and ignores this miracle molecule’s role in making crops, forests and grasslands grow faster and better, with less water.

As reviews are completed, agenda-driven rules and executive orders should be suspended, rescinded and defunded, so that they are no longer part of the $1.9 trillion regulatory drag on job and economic growth.

Grants for biased research can be terminated, agency personnel assigned to climate programs can be reassigned, and those found falsifying data or engaging in other corrupt practices should be punished.

3) A recent White House report lists $21.4 billion in annual spending on climate research and renewable energy programs. That’s in addition to EPA and other federal agency regulatory budgets - and on top of the burdensome impacts the programs have had on families, businesses, jobs and our future.

Terminating biased, needless or punitive programs would go a long way toward balancing the budget and getting our nation back on track. Ending crony corporatist deal-making, power grabbing and enrichment schemes would ensure that The Billionaire’s Club and its government and industry allies no longer have access to taxpayer billions, no longer have a stranglehold on our energy and economy, and no longer get still richer on the backs of American workers, taxpayers and consumers.

4) Revise Endangered Species Act provisions and regulations to require that any listings, permit denials or penalties reflect honest empirical science - not computer models or baseless assertions. Exemptions for bird and bat-killing wind turbines must no longer be permitted, and ESA rules must be applied with equal force to all projects, not just drilling, mining, pipelines, power plants, grazing and timber cutting.

5) Approve the Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipelines; end the obstructionism and finish the projects. Standing Rock Sioux Indians had multiple opportunities to participate in the review process, but refused to do so. Now they and Soros-supported radicals are preventing work, destroying expensive equipment, butchering ranchers’ cattle and bison, and harassing local families. This can no longer be tolerated.

6) Prohibit and terminate sue-and-settle lawsuits, under which activists and regulators collude to secure a sympathetic judge’s order implementing regulations that they all want. (Or initiate a series of sue-and-settle actions by energy and manufacturing interests against Trump agencies - and then stop the practice!)

7) Reform the 1906 Antiquities Act. Intended to protect small areas of historic or scenic value, it has been abused too often to place millions of acres off limits to energy development and other economic uses, by presidential edict. Losing Senate candidate Katie McGinty engineered a massive land lock-up in Utah that double-crossed the state’s governor and congressional delegation, and even President Clinton.

Congress must more clearly define its purposes, limit the acreage that can be designated by presidential decree, and provide for congressional review and approval of all decisions.

8) Reform the Environmental Protection Agency, and devolve many of its powers and responsibilities back to the states, under a consortium representing all 50 state EPAs. We have won the major pollution battles that EPA was created to address. Now we must devote appropriate funding and personnel to real remaining environmental problems – and shrink or terminate Obama-era agenda-driven programs.

Recent EPA actions on climate, air quality, human experiments, the Clean Power Plan, the war on coal, and “waters of the United States” were used to expand its budget, personnel, and powers over the nation’s environment, energy and economy. EPA needs a shorter leash, less money and a smaller staff.

9) Shrink the renewable energy programs, and jumpstart onshore and offshore leasing, drilling, fracking and mining on federally managed lands. America can again produce the fossil fuel blessings that lifted billions out of poverty, disease and early death - and created jobs, prosperity, health, living standards and life spans unimaginable barely a century ago. We should also encourage other nations to do likewise.

10) If President Obama finishes his term with a tsunami of regulations and executive orders, it should be met with similar suspend, defund and rescind reactions. Mr. Obama, congressional Democrats and their riot-prone base should understand that programs and rules imposed with the stroke of a pen, and without the support of Congress and the American people, can and should also be undone with the stroke of a pen.

Without these difficult but necessary (and fun) steps, it will be very hard to make America great again.

Paul Driessen is senior policy analyst for the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (www.CFACT.org), and author of Eco-Imperialism: Green power - Black death and other books on the environment.

Nov 09, 2016
Proposed Early Priority for Trump: A Letter to USEPA to Reconsider and Withdraw Endangerment Finding

Alan Carlin, November 9, 2016

In March, 2009 I prepared almost 100 pages of comments to EPA concerning the need to revise the draft Technical Support Document (TSD) for the EPA Endangerment Finding for Greenhouse Gases (GHGs).

The three main points in my comments were that the Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming (CAGW) hypothesis is invalid from a scientific viewpoint because it fails a number of critical comparisons with available observable data, that the TSD draft was seriously dated and the updates made to an earlier 2007 version were inadequate, and that EPA should make an independent analysis of the science of global warming rather than adopting the conclusions of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and US Government reports based on it.

EPA chose to suppress my comments, ignore these recommendations, and issue its GHG Endangerment Finding late in 2009. As I had feared the Finding laid the legal framework for the issuance of a number of EPA regulations intended to reduce emissions of GHGs.

Subsequent research outlined in my book, Environmentalism Gone Mad, made an even stronger case that the alarmist “science” presented in the EPA GHG Endangerment Finding TSD as well as the IPCC reports are scientifically invalid. A new report provides even more conclusive evidence in this regard. There is now overwhelming evidence that the EPA GHG Endangerment Finding is simply wrong and needs to be reconsidered and withdrawn before it leads to even greater economic harm by incorrectly justifying CO2 EPA-imposed emissions reductions that have no measurable effects on global temperatures.

I hope that the new Trump Administration will make this an early priority at EPA if the outgoing Obama Administration fails to do so.

The following letter to five current EPA officials makes the formal case for this:

November 5, 2016

Mr. Arthur A. Elkins, Jr.
Inspector General
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (Mailcode 2410T)
1200 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20460

Dear Mr. Elkins:

We write to request that EPA forthwith reconsider - or, more accurately, that it properly consider for the first time - its so-called “Endangerment Finding” (EF) of December 2009 with respect to atmospheric greenhouse gases. As you know, in the EF EPA concluded that certain atmospheric greenhouse gases “endanger both the public health and the public welfare of current and future generations.”

Real-world events described below, both prior and subsequent to the adoption of the EF, have thoroughly discredited the basis on which EPA purported to adopt the Finding, and indeed have completely undermined each of the three “lines of evidence” on which EPA said it relied for its action. In short, the EF has been definitively invalidated by real-world evidence in accordance with the scientific method. This highly embarrassing situation for EPA is not unexpected, as the EF was adopted by means of a completely deficient process.

As Inspector General of EPA, you are the key person in a position to right this ship. Because of the numerous glaring deficiencies in the process by which the EF was adopted, you have the ability, and indeed the obligation, to takes steps that should lead to a proper reconsideration of the Finding.

During 2009, in the period leading to adoption of the EF, numerous public comments and submissions were provided to EPA. In one such submission, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce issued a petition in which it, among other things, (1) requested a hearing on the proposed EF under 5 U.S.C. Sections 556-57, with all proceedings on the record, and with parties able to submit supporting documents, data and presentations, and (2) asked that EPA have the benefit of full input from its Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee. EPA declined to grant these requests.

A key comment submitted to EPA in connection with its adoption of the EF, dated October 7, 2009, came from a large group of some thirty-five prominent scientists. I attach a copy of that comment letter. In addition to pointing out deficiencies in EPA’s process, the October 7, 2009 Letter also enumerated the major questions that EPA would need to answer definitively in order to have proper support for the EF. The letter stated:

“[W]e urge the EPA to address four critical questions, which, in addition to the issues enumerated in the Chamber’s Petition, are central to the EPA’s proposed rulemaking. Indeed, these questions require careful analysis before intelligent public policy can be promulgated. They are:

1 Is the Earth’s climate changing in an unusual or anomalous fashion?
2 Does the science permit rejection of the hypothesis that CO2 is only a minor player in the Earth’s climate system?
3 Can climate models that assume CO2 is a key determinant of climate change provide forecasts of future conditions that are adequate for policy analysis?
4 Can we reject the hypothesis that the primary drivers of the Earth’s climate system will continue to be natural (non-anthropogenic) forces and internal climate variability?”

EPA failed properly to address or answer any of these questions. Instead, it proceeded largely on the basis of unverified climate models and politicized lobbying.

The accumulation of real-world evidence since 2009 has completely undermined whatever basis ever existed for the EF. Most recently, on September 21, 2016 a major Research Report by Wallace, et al., was published on the ICECAP website and at various other locations.

The new Research Report is a definitive invalidation of each of EPA’s three lines of evidence for its EF. The Research Report is based on the best available empirical evidence of world temperatures from thirteen independently-constructed sources, and utilizes the most mathematically rigorous mathematical techniques. The three principal conclusions of the Research Report, which relate directly to each of EPA’s Lines of Evidence, are as follows:

* “These analysis results would appear to leave very, very little doubt but that EPA’s claim of a Tropical Hot Spot (THS), caused by rising atmospheric CO2 levels, simply does not exist in the real world.

* “Once EPA’s THS assumption is invalidated, it is obvious why the climate models they claim can be relied upon, are also invalid.”

* “[T]his analysis failed to find that the steadily rising Atmospheric CO2 Concentrations have had a statistically significant impact on any of the 13 critically important temperature time series data analyzed.” ----"[T]hese results clearly demonstrate - 13 times in fact - that once just the ENSO [El Nino/La Nina] impacts on temperature data are accounted for, there is no “record setting” warming to be concerned about. In fact, there is no ENSO-Adjusted Warming at all.”

Based on the Research Report, the undersigned sent letters to each of the various scientific societies that have backed EPA’s “consensus science” approach to climate change issues, asking them to reconsider their positions. An exemplar of one of those letters is attached.

This situation is rapidly developing into a serious embarrassment for EPA. The economic stakes could not be higher. European nations that have pursued energy policies similar to those pushed by EPA have seen their costs of electricity multiply, and millions of their citizens thrown into energy poverty. It is high time that EPA conduct a proper evaluation of its endangerment hypothesis. Such a proper evaluation should at the minimum include on the record hearings, with opportunities for parties to present supporting data and evidence, as well as full involvement from the Scientific Advisory Committee.

Very truly yours,

Francis Menton
Law Office of Francis Menton
85 Broad Street, 18th floor
New York, New York 10004

Alan Carlin
Webmaster, carlineconomics.com

Mr. Menton is a lawyer in New York. He has represented numerous scientists, among them the authors and many of the reviewers of the Research Report cited in this letter, in making submissions as amici curiae to courts including the D.C. Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court on issues related to energy and climate matters.

Dr. Carlin is a retired senior analyst and manager at the US Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, 1971-2010; previously he was an economist at the RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, CA. He is the author of Environmentalism Gone Mad, Stairway Press, and the author or coauthor of about 40 other professional publications including many on climate science and economics. He has a PhD in economics from MIT and a BS in physics from Caltech.

Ms. Gina McCarthy
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Ms. Janet McCabe
Acting Administrator for Air and Radiation
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Dr. Ana V. Diez Roux
Chairperson, Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Dr. Peter S. Thorne
Chairman, Science Advisory Board
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

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