Friday, December 23, 2011

The fraud continues

Despite having no data north of 80N, Hansen has determined that it was very hot there in November. By fabricating a huge 4-8C anomaly at the North Pole, he is able to keep global temperatures (barely) rising this century, while HadCRUT shows global temperatures falling.

He also did a bang up job warming Greenland well above measured temperatures. RSS showed almost all of Greenland cold, but Hansen’s magic crayon did an impressive job of heating the place up.

SOURCE (See the original for links)

Obama Sides with Whackos over Workers- Kills Another 3000 Jobs

The EPA went last-minute Christmas shopping for votes this year to stick in their boss’, um… ballot-box shaped stocking. Once he realized his economic plans wouldn’t create jobs, Obama has been like an employment Typhoid Mary, killing jobs wherever he can in order to boost support from his whack-job supporters in the hopes for some votes, any votes.

In a desperate bid to win back support of the enviro-whackos who have been critical of the Obama administration, the EPA issued a final ruling on MACT standards that will shutter up to 60 coal-fired power plants, costing an estimated 3000 jobs in the plants alone. Merry Christmas!

A typical coal-fired plant employs an average of 54 workers.

The move was blasted by Congressman John Sullivan, Vice Chairman of the House Energy and Power Subcommittee as the “EPA gone rogue.”

“Utility Mact is the most expensive rule EPA has ever written for power plants – its going to layoff American workers,” said Sullivan, “could shut down over 60 power plants all together and raise the price families pay to heat their homes this winter. EPA has gone rouge – they are catering to radical left wing environmentalists instead of presenting a workable plan that protects the environment as well as American jobs.”

EPA said that by shutting down the plants, they’ll be preventing 17,000 deaths per year caused by polar bear cannibals, er, strike that…by pollution…yeah… pollution. Of course they provide little-to-no data to support the claim. Indeed, in one place the EPA revises the number downward to 4,200-11,000 global warming, er,...pollution deaths. With the many global crises going on, it’s hard to keep track of which crisis the Democrats are saving us from on any given day.

The EPA trotted out the new death statistics in the spring after meeting opposition to the new MACT standards by those silly people who would like to keep their jobs and the rest of us who’d like to pay reasonable prices for electricity, presumably so that we can all keep our Chevy Volts going- 33 miles between a 12 hour charge!. You know? When we aren’t driving our Nat Gas powered Pelosi-mobiles.

Previously the EPA had argued hard for poor visibility as the driving force behind the new regulations. But that argument ran into a buzz saw of opposition called common sense, aka, the House Energy and Power Subcommittee.

Scott Segal, director of the Electric Reliability Coordinating Council, told Power Engineering Magazine that the rule will cost more than just jobs and coal generation.

"It will increase the cost of power, undermining the international competitiveness of almost two dozen manufacturing industries," Segal said.

The Wall Street Journal estimates that the scheme will cost the industry $10 billion, which of course will be passed along to consumers.

Of course the consumers won’t be hit the worst. It’s the employees who are being told just a few days before Christmas that they will have to find new jobs, who are the ones that will pay for Obama’s electioneering.

But Obama’s already made it clear that if he has to pick between workers and his far-left base, he’s going with his base- at least until he can turn on them again; you know, like he did with Hispanics, Blacks, Unions and once-upon-a-time enviro-whackos?

Terry O’Sullivan, General President of LIUNA – the Laborers’ International Union of North America has recently blasted Obama for double dealing against American jobs on behalf of the enviro-whackos like he did on the Keystone Oil Pipeline. O’Sullivan represents pipefitters and others who would be employed on the Keystone project.

“Environmentalists formed a circle around the White House and within days the Obama Administration chose to inflict a potentially fatal delay to a project that is not just a pipeline,” said O’Sullivan when Obama punted on the pipeline project to side with whackos over workers, “but is a lifeline for thousands of desperate working men and women. The Administration chose to support environmentalists over jobs – job-killers win, American workers lose. Environmental groups from the Natural Resources Defense Council to the Sierra Club may be dancing in the streets, having delayed and possibly stopped yet another project that would put men and women back to work. While they celebrate, pipeline workers will continue to lose their homes and livelihoods.”

Merry Christmas, Mr. Obama. You should be proud.

Still, the whack-job left remains skeptical of Obama largely because they have yet to see him confiscate your home, my home and all other homes with up-to-date mortgages. Remember: This is a group of people who think recycling is dropping “trou” in Zucotti Park.

OWS groups have been “occupying” both Obama’s Iowa campaign headquarters and the headquarters of the Democrat National Committee to protest Obama’s sellout to Wall Street.

While protests from the hard left continue, expect Obama to show he’s not a sellout by selling out to the radicals over American workers who not only install indoor plumbing for a living, but also know how to use it.


Canada and the Kyoto Protocol: Who Says Quitters Never Win?

In a victory for common sense, America's top trading partner has become the first country to bail on the Kyoto Protocol before the nearly $7 billion in noncompliance costs comes due next year. Thus ends a pointless and pricey exercise in martyrdom.

Having committed to reducing 1990-level carbon emissions by 6 percent, Canada somehow managed to go in the other direction by about a third. Not that anyone in Canada would have noticed by any tangible common-sense measure, except perhaps for all the Canadian plants and trees quietly cheering the abundance of carbon dioxide and overproducing fresh oxygen as a result.

So what, exactly, is the valid scientific reason for which a well-managed country with a natural-resource-based economy would purposely choose to sacrifice its competitive advantage amid economic uncertainty, particularly when oil and natural-resource competitor Russia has a mandate to reduce its emissions by exactly zero, and America wisely didn't even sign the agreement?

Environmentalism is all feel-good fun and games until taxpayers get mugged. Times and priorities have changed, and scammy nonsense like taxing and trading in plant food credits has lost its luster. Protesters are already complaining about Wall Street. We really don't need yet another (and even dodgier) market system for them to whine about.

Carbon reduction is just a luxury pastime, and arguably a useless one. Where can you breathe better -- "carbon-dumping" Canada, or Europe? I rest my case.

European countries have long been proudly fiddling with carbon credits both amongst themselves and on the world stage. Good for them. Given the current economic state of the euro zone, it's obvious they've been busy debating wallpaper samples while the bulldozer rolls full speed toward the house. Good luck saving the world when you can't pay the rent. Europe will probably keep trying to impose its moral example through climate-change activism, even when it's in debt to China and Russia, both of which have zero Kyoto obligations.

A developed country under the carbon tax system can choose to offset its guilt with actions rather than cash transfers to less-industrialized countries. Nice racket. So Canada may have been able to reduce its billions owed with "do-gooder credits," furiously running around the world planting trees, French-kissing rainbow trout, hosting one rock concert on arctic ice floes featuring Bono for every gigatonne of carbon spewed, or something else equally absurd.

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper reiterated at a Toronto press conference last week that his government was committed to working with the private sector in the ongoing development of emissions-reduction technology, thereby differentiating between a heartfelt, morally genuine effort and a crippling political imposition.

Existing gentlemen's agreements between provinces and American regions on emission reduction might be a fun distraction from practical life, like a badminton league or hockey pool. They should never have been parlayed into something that costs anyone more than a beer, let alone billions.

Canadian opposition parties predictably whined about not being allowed to tag along with the environment minister to the recent Durban summit, where they were hoping to run around profusely apologizing for the government's lack of sensitivity in saving Canadian taxpayers a multibillion-dollar bill.

The Liberal Party's environment critic, Kirsty Duncan, accused Harper's government of ignoring the "science" of this. "While the world emits 48 gigatonnes of carbon each year," she wrote, "most models suggest that emissions need to drop to 44 gigatonnes by 2020 to maintain a likely chance (66 percent) of remaining under 2 degrees Celsius."

Harper should have responded that this overwrought, overfunded reasoning can be alleviated, according to bought scientific consensus, by running 6 million to 11 million barrels of Canadian crude (or Molson Canadian beer) over a leftist brain at 40 degrees Celsius to maintain a 66 percent chance of reducing its temperature to 38 degrees Celsius by 2020.

The Socialist NDP official opposition leader added: "While the Harper Conservatives are causing Canada to fall behind, the rest of the world is moving forward in the new energy economy."

Good for "the rest of the world." Have fun playing with your new taxes. The rest of us have real problems to deal with.


Ohio Union to Obama: Enviro Job-Killers Win, American Workers Lose

I have written before on these pages about how an administration that kowtows to the environmental lobby has played havoc with jobs in my adopted home state of Utah, with the caveat that sooner or later prohibitions on energy development and multiple use of public lands would find its way to other parts of the nation. And unfortunately, I was right. I submit for your consideration the issue of shale gas in Ohio. Yes, Ohio. Not Utah. Not Colorado, not even Pennsylvania but Ohio.

Ohio State Treasurer Josh Mandel is stumping for Senator. He recently published a piece in the Wall Street Journal and on his website about the federal government derailing the oil shale gas industry in Ohio before it even gets off, or more appropriately out of the ground.

According to Mandel, exploration of Ohio’s Utica shale formation could create 200,000 jobs in Ohio, shovel ready and otherwise. Let me say that again: 200,000 jobs. That number includes the people needed to get the energy out of the ground and the umber of people needed by Republic Steel and U.S. Steel who will have to produce the pipes and other equipment. And don’t forget the people who will be employed in the various stores, hotels, restaurants and trucking companies needed to back all of this production up.

There is a precedent for this, I saw it happen in Utah, and it is happening right now in North Dakota. The extraction industry brings jobs. Many of them are high-paying jobs that include things like health insurance and retirement plans.

But the promise in Ohio is in limbo at the moment, and may not come to pass, as the U.S. Department of Agriculture has announced that it has decided to suspend oil and gas leases on three thousand acres of federal land in Ohio.

According to Mandel’s article, add Administration’s brinksmanship regarding the Keystone XL Pipeline, and even the unions are unhappy. In fact, the president of the Laborer’s International Union of North America, in reference to Keystone XL stated “The administration chose to support environmentalists over jobs…Job-killers win, American workers lose.”

I grew up in Ohio, back before all the cool kids were environmentally sensitive, and love of the earth was de rigueur. And yes, there was a time in which corporations did not care. I remember giant open strip mines left to fester, and ponds so polluted that new words practically had to be invented to describe their color.

But that was then, this is now. Oil and gas companies no longer view the land as something to be seized and drained. I know this because I watch them here in Utah do things like enhance and increase sage grouse habitat, and spend the extra time and money to develop directional drilling, find ways to reduce their emissions, and reduce and recycle production water.

It may be heartwarming for some to spread misconceptions about hydraulic fracturing ushering in the end of the world, or to go to war for the continued existence of the Western Glacier Stonefly (and yes, U.S. Fish and Wildlife is seriously considering a petition to list it as endangered) This stuff may sound god on spec, but when it begins to separate the American people from American lands, it may be time to reexamine the no-people/no industry/no jobs approach to lands management.

The irony here is that with the simple approval of the XL pipeline, and the jobs and cheaper energy it would bring, President Obama would do wonders for his flagging public opinion. People want and need jobs right now, not the promise of an electric car they cannot afford. A decision by the President to allow the pipeline to go through and to allow more energy extraction in America would show the country that he is more concerned with American prosperity and security than he is with favoring campaign donors and mollifying the environmentalists whose votes he seeks.

So Ohio is apparently out in the cold right now. I know the feeling, because in my town we watched jobs and money head to North Dakota because of the policies of the federal government. And chances are very good, that under the noble auspices of preserving a species or protecting the land, energy or some other activity may soon be curtailed in your state or town as well. I invite you to peruse the Department of The Interior’s press release page. The DOI has been very busy of late with its Great Outdoors initiative. Not all of the projects listed are aimed at curtailing multiple use and access of public lands. Some in fact are quite benign. But you should remember the lesson that we in Utah have learned: government largesse almost always comes with government strings, which can be drawn very tight.


Now Brussels clobbers British holidaymakers with a green tax on flights: Family of four forced to pay £80 more to fly to America

A green tax imposed by Brussels will cost a family of four £80 more to holiday in the U.S. The controversial levy comes into force on January 1. A ruling yesterday by the European Court of Justice means any airline using any EU airport will be subject to the environmental charge.

This will add an estimated £21 to the price of a return flight to America. It comes on top of charges to be introduced in April by the UK Treasury which will add to the burden faced by British holidaymakers. In all, the cost to a family of four of a return flight to Florida will rise by a daunting £344.

The EU Emissions Trading Scheme is designed to curb emissions from aircraft jet engines of carbon dioxide. From January 1, all airlines will be required to buy a ‘permit to pollute’ to cover the cost of their carbon emissions plus extra costs if they exceed their emissions limit.

The court yesterday rejected a challenge from the U.S. and other non-EU nations that the levy infringes their national sovereignty and violates international aviation treaties.

The cost will almost inevitably be passed on to passengers, and the EU calculates the cost will be £10.50 on a one-way transatlantic flight – or £21 return. For many shorter flights it will be up to £1.75 each way.

The EU does not have power to raise direct taxes but can impose expensive regulations on businesses in member states, which have a similar effect. The money raised each year by the sale to airlines of the ‘pollution permits’ will go back to the country in which the airline is based, rather than to Brussels.

The ECJ rejected an American challenge that the scheme violates the Open Skies treaty prohibition against unilateral taxation or discriminatory treatment.

It is especially bad news for British passengers, who will be forced to pay twice over because the Government also imposes the Air Passenger Duty departure levy, known as ‘the poll tax of the skies.’

Last month the Daily Mail revealed how Mr Osborne had finally abandoned all previous Government pretence of using Air Passenger Duty as a ‘green tax’ and admitted in a letter to European airport bosses that it was now ‘fundamentally a revenue-raising duty’ which provides Treasury coffers with £2.5billion a year.

Yesterday’s decision sparked fury from countries outside the EU and threatened to ignite a transatlantic and worldwide trade war with Britain and the rest of the European Union. The rejected lawsuit was brought by U.S. and Canadian airlines acting through the trade organisation Airlines for America and backed by Russia, China and other non-EU countries.

They object strongly on ‘sovereignty’ grounds to being forced to pay ‘green’ taxes to foreign governments. A Bill currently going through the U.S. Congress will even make it illegal for airlines to pay them.

Tory MP Philip Davies said: ‘It’s unacceptable. The last thing people need at this time of year is the EU sticking extra taxes on us. Families are struggling to make ends meet as it is.’


Another Australian State Government offers veto option for residents in proposed wind farm zones


PEOPLE living within 2km of proposed wind farms will have the right to veto them, under a NSW Government proposal.

Planning and Infrastructure Minister Brad Hazzard says NSW remains committed to being part of the Federal Government's 20 per cent renewable energy target by 2020, despite proposing what he has described as the world's toughest wind-farm guidelines.

Under the proposal, a company wanting to set up a wind farm in an area where landowner consent has not been given will have to go to an independent regional planning panel if there is community opposition. "That means 100 per cent of neighbours have to be happy within that 2km zone," Mr Hazzard said.

Mr Hazzard said he hoped the idea would find a balance between residents living near wind turbines and supporters of renewable energy.

"Today I am announcing that the NSW coalition Government is putting out for public discussion some of the toughest wind-farm guidelines in the country, possibly the world," he said.

The Victorian Government this year gave residents within a 2km radius a right of veto over wind turbines. But Mr Hazzard said the NSW proposal was different to Victoria's and that wind-farm proponents would get a bigger say. People wishing to write submissions to the NSW Department of Planning and Infrastructure have until March 14.

Across NSW, there are 17 applications to build wind farms, including 13 that are yet to be shown to the public.

The NSW Greens said the proposal would kill off the wind-generation sector in favour of coal seam gas as a solution to the state's future energy needs.

"If this draft plan becomes law, the Government has effectively chosen a destructive coal seam gas future for NSW, over the clean, green and jobs-rich wind-energy sector," Greens planning spokesman David Shoebridge said.

"NSW is abandoning the most cost-effective option for reducing its carbon footprint, which in effect means it is giving the green light for coal seam gas projects across the state."



For more postings from me, see DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when is playing up, there are mirrors of this site here and here


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