Sunday, January 22, 2012

Obama’s Misleading Green-Jobs Ad: Taking Credit for Imaginary Jobs

There are only 140,000 jobs in the whole renewable-energy sector, but in a new ad, Obama is taking credit for a “clean energy industry” that has “2.7 million jobs.” Obama inflated the number of “clean-energy” jobs by adding people who have nothing to do with clean-energy, like “trash collectors” and bureaucrats. By inflating the total, Obama was able to paper over his complete failure to live up to his utterly unrealistic campaign promise “to create 5 million new green jobs.” Most of America’s existing green jobs predate the Obama Administration, which did not create them: “from 2003-2010, the rate of growth for clean jobs was 3.4 percent.”

Indeed, the Obama Administration used federal green-jobs money to outsource American jobs to countries like China: “Despite all the talk of green jobs, the overwhelming majority of stimulus money spent on wind power has gone to foreign companies, according to a new report by the Investigative Reporting Workshop” at American University. “79 percent” of all green-jobs funding “went to companies based overseas,” with the largest payment going to a bankrupt Australian company. “Most of the jobs are going overseas,” said Russ Choma at the Investigative Reporting Workshop.

Meanwhile, America actually lost jobs in wind-manufacturing: “Even with the infusion of so much stimulus money, a recent report by American Wind Energy Association showed a drop in U.S. wind manufacturing jobs last year.” (CBS News recently reported that there are 11 more companies, in addition to Solyndra, that are embroiled in financial trouble after receiving billions of dollars in taxpayer money; five have already filed for bankruptcy).

Obama’s mythical green-jobs are like other imaginary jobs he claimed to have created with the $800 billion stimulus package. The Obama Administration took credit for jobs created in 440 non-existent Congressional districts, such as Arizona’s 15th and 86th districts (Arizona only had 8 Congressional districts, as ABC News noted with amusement). The Washington Examiner noted that at least “75,000 jobs” Obama has claimed credit for are “clearly imaginary” or “highly doubtful.” Readers can view its interactive map of “Inflated Jobs by State.”

The Obama Administration claimed that the stimulus package would keep unemployment from ever rising above 8 percent, but it peaked at over 10 percent. Obama claimed the stimulus was needed to prevent an “irreversible decline,” but the Congressional Budget Office admits that the stimulus package will shrink the economy “in the long run.”

Obama’s green-jobs pledge isn’t his only broken promise. Obama campaigned in 2008 on a promise of a “net spending cut,” but soon after taking office, he proposed budgets that would add $4.8 trillion to the national debt.

SOURCE (See the original for links)

Destroying America by Denying Access to Energy

By Alan Caruba

It is the crime of the century that America, home to some of the world’s greatest reserves of coal, natural gas and oil, is being deliberately destroyed by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of the Interior as they do everything in their power to restrict access and drive energy producers out of business.

It is common sense that a nation that cannot produce sufficient electricity to turn on its lights and power its manufacturing sector will be destroyed if current Obama administration regulations and actions continue. Our vital transportation sector and all others that utilize petroleum-based products will suffer, too.

While President Obama babbles about millionaires and billionaires, everyone will be impoverished by the loss of jobs and revenue our energy sector produces now and can produce in the future.

This isn’t an “energy policy.” It’s a “no-energy policy” and it is a guarantee of economic disaster.

Obama’s decision to reject a permit for Canada’s XL Keystone pipeline is just one example. It is a job-killer and a revenue-killer. There are thousands of pipelines serving America’s energy needs and the XL Keystone pipeline would ensure that Canada’s own vast energy reserves would flow to America. It is one of our key trade partners and Obama has slapped it in the face.

In early January, Ken Salazar, the Secretary of the Interior, announced a new 20-year, million-acre ban on uranium mining for federal lands in Arizona, despite the fact that these lands hold the highest-grade of known uranium deposits in the United States. It is an outrage that a new GOP-Congress will have to overturn if the nation is to be assured of sufficient uranium to power its nuclear plants and for weapons development. If the ban remains, these uranium resources would be inaccessible until 2023!

Tom Pyle, president of the Institute for Energy Research said that Salazar’s announcement “further compounds a man-made energy crisis that has been planned and executed in Washington, D.C.”

At the same time we are learning of enormous natural gas discoveries that can reduce our energy bills and turn sleeping little towns into boomtowns, environmental organizations have launched a vast propaganda campaign against “fracking”, a technology that has been safely used for more than fifty years. Their claims about dangers to the nation’s supply of fresh water are baseless. Their claims that fracking has caused earthquakes in Ohio are absurd.

Need it be said that the Environmental Protection Agency has turned its eyes on fracking and is working on a report due later this year that will likely call for harsh crackdowns on its use and more regulations to throttle the expansion of natural gas extraction?

The EPA has just released a report of those power plants that top the list of its regulation of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. There is no basis in science to justify the reduction of CO2. Indeed, since it is a gas on which all vegetation depends, much as oxygen is vital to all animal life, reducing it would impair great crop yields and healthier forests.

These regulations are based on the global warming hoax that blamed CO2 for warming the earth. That is utterly false. The Earth is currently in a perfectly natural cooling cycle and the climate of the Earth is almost entirely based on the Sun—solar radiation—along with the actions of oceans, clouds, and even volcanic activity that spews tons of particulates into the atmosphere.

Coal-fired power plants account for fifty percent of all the electricity generated in the United States. Fifty percent! And yet the EPA is determined to shut down dozens of them providing that vital factor in the lives of all Americans and the economy, nor does this take into account the billions that energy producers have spent to upgrade their technology to reduce emissions.

The Obama administration fuel economy agenda, a call for 54.5 miles per gallon ignores simple physics. There is a finite amount of energy a gallon of gas can generate. If you dilute it with ethanol as is currently required, you get even less mileage. The administration is trying to circumvent Congress by issuing standards based on regulating “greenhouse gas emissions”, but there is no need for this. It is a false argument. The Center for Automotive Research says that the proposed new standards would cause the retail price of average motor vehicles to increase by more than $11,000.

Americans and the nation’s future are being victimized by Obama administration policies. The 18th annual Index of Economic Freedom, was released on January 12th by The Heritage Foundation and The Wall Street Journal, measures the many factors that contribute to the economic health of a nation—things like property rights, regulatory efficiency, open markets, free trade and labor policies.

Economic freedom is declining worldwide as governments try to spend their way out of the global recession. The United States fell to 10th place. In 2009 it ranked 6th, in 2010 it was 8th, and in 2011, it was 9th.

We are witnessing the deliberate murder of a superpower.


Computer Climate Models — A Masochist’s Best Friend

Harold Ambler

A new paper out of Duke, Stanford, and the Environmental Defense Fund, promises that California will have a hard time fulfilling its carbon sequestration targets if climate keeps changing at the terrifying pace it has of late. Using computer models to prove its claims, if not its logic (since it has none), the paper had the usual effect that such glorified press releases do on your correspondent.

Leaving aside the fact that carbon sequestration is a bad idea, in response to questionable science, the idea that newspaper space is occupied by model-driven climate analyses day in and day out is, I admit, hard to take. Why, you ask? Well, I happen to have addressed that very question in my spiffy new book. And, if you’re very, very nice, or even if you just keep reading, you’ll see why.

Let’s start with a picture!

Computer models have come to replace reality in the public debate about climate. NASA’s “Columbia” supercomputer, Mountain View, California, 2006

That’s a big boy! Must have something interesting to say about climate change! You bet he does! And now, just a tantalizing bit of Chapter 5 (Rise of the Machines) from Don’t Sell Your Coat:

So the ice caps aren’t melting. That doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty of other ammunition with which to scare otherwise sane people badly. Put yourself in the shoes of the global warming doomsayers. If you’re going to scare the pants off a whole bunch of folks, you’re going to need some powerful tools. Arguably the most powerful tool available for such a purpose is the supercomputer. That is why a single phrase appears in nearly every article and book dealing with climate change. Although the phrase is used in other disciplines to signify divergence from reality, in the case of climate science it has come to be equated with reality, or even to replace reality. Its proponents are passionate, tireless. Its detractors don’t really know where to start.

That phrase? Computer models.

The full formal name is general circulation models. Using gridded cells the size of Connecticut, these computer models are humanity’s effort to lasso, intellectually, what may be the most mentally uncontrollable being ever created: Earth’s climate system. There are many, many issues with models.

Using the most powerful supercomputers in existence, modelers strain to generate even faintly accurate climate forecasts, simply for lack of computing power. The ocean-atmosphere system is that complicated. Among the items that the models must attempt to compute: highly complex, poorly understood deep-sea currents; the effects of aerosols (fine pollution particles) on cloud formation; the effect of black carbon pollution on the melt rate of snow and ice, especially in the Arctic; solar radiation (via an effect known as solar dimming); volcanic eruptions; the effect of air masses of different pressure on either side of mountains (a process known as mountain torque); variations in wind patterns, particularly of trade winds that lead to El Niños and La Niñas; variations in albedo, which is the extent to which the Earth’s surface and atmosphere (ice sheets, clouds, oceans, forests, deserts, cities, farms, rivers, and lakes) reflect radiation back to space; and, finally, solar variation, including a controversial secondary effect of the Sun’s shifting phases on cloud formation in our atmosphere.

Every one of these variable quantities is being debated in the scientific literature. And in the blogosphere the debate is red hot, as exemplified by the tongue-in-cheek suggestion by more than one blogger that global warming skeptics be murdered in their sleep. Controversy aside, just measuring any one of the factors to be included in computer model simulations, at any given moment in time, is nearly impossible. Among the reasons: The planet is a lot bigger than the average person gives it credit for being. The ability to fly from one continent to another in less than half a day gives a false impression of scale, it turns out.

The state of Texas can help convey the size of the planet. Texas, at 268,581 square miles constitutes 13.2 percent of the land area of the United States (which comes in at 3,537,441 square miles). The surface area of Earth, though, is 196,935,000 square miles. The percent of the world’s surface occupied by Texas, then, is 0.5. And yet within this one-half of one percent of Earth’s surface area are several vastly different climates. From the high mountain desert of El Paso in the west, where accumulating snowstorms are typical most winters, to the southernmost coast on South Padre Island where the warm Gulf of Mexico water acts as a powerful buffer against temperature extremes (especially those of winter), to oppressively hot and humid Houston, to Amarillo in the Panhandle with its four distinct seasons, to the state’s myriad river systems (each with its own micro-climate), Texas (as those who have labored to drive across any portion of it know) is enormous. Likewise, every other half-percent of the globe’s land mass is, too.

- end of excerpt -

As the models continue to foresee worse and worse scenarios, demanding more and more extreme measures from politicians and the public alike, including and specifically a darker and darker future for my native state, I have to say that California, outside of its political present, continues to be a healthy, vibrant land that I am fortunate to have known intimately, and to know still.


From Rescuing The Climate To Rescuing The Economy – Germany’s Energy Transition Goes Into Reverse

Imagine if the government forced supermarkets to buy bread from plain white bread bakeries, ordered them to pay these bakeries a fixed price that’s 5 times higher than normal for 20 years, and forced them to buy up all the white bread these bakeries could produce, whether needed or not.

And imagine if the government also forced the supermarkets to buy bread that was never baked to begin with! All of this of course justified by bogus science claiming plain white bread is healthy and whole grain bread is a killer.

You can imagine the consequences.

Well, that’s exactly what Germany is doing with electricity. It requires power utilities to buy up “green” electricity from every producer at exorbitant rates, and to do so for 20 years. And if the grid gets overloaded on windy days, the wind-farm operator is told to stop producing, but still gets paid by the power utilities.

Unfortunately, Germany’s green politicians here were too dim-witted to foresee the obvious consequences. Now reality has since caught up. The German electricity market is on the verge of collapse. The scale of the EEG Renewable Energy Feed-in Act is of unprecedented stupidity, a folly that will certainly go down in German history textbooks.

The backpedaling away from solar subsidies in Germany is now happening so fast that it’s making people’s heads spin. Call it the reverse energy supply transition – one from fantasy back to reality.

Germany pulls the emergency brake on solar energy

Today a growing number of German officials, who were once huge proponents of renewable energies and the EEG Feed-In Act, are now realizing that solar energy in gray and rainy Germany is a folly after all. Electricity rates in Germany are skyrocketing and the risks of uncontrolled energy supply interruptions are mounting. Officials are now screaming for a drastic scale-back of solar subsidies. Economics Minister Philip Rösler is now calling for an end to the fixed and guaranteed (for 20 years) renewable energy feed-in rates paid to green producers.

Even Germany’s super green Environment Minister Norbert Röttgen has seemingly woken up and now plans to drastically scale back new installations of solar systems in Germany, according to CO2 Handel here. In the new plan, subsidies will be scaled back on a monthly basis and accelerated. Subsidies for solar systems under the new plan would end by 2017.

Energy intensive industries are bolting, or are planning to do so

Power utilities have been finding it increasingly difficult to juggle the constantly and widely varying energy sources of wind and solar power, and are warning that power outages and grid collapses are just a question of time.

The mandatory feed-in of the vastly more expensive solar energy has caused electricity rates to surge and have been driving energy-intensive industries out of Germany. Solar energy was until recently seen as a way of filling in as a power supply in place of the shut down nuclear reactors, and rescuing the climate from coal plants. Now the focus of politics has reversed and shifted to rescuing the economy.

Recent surveys have shown that companies are becoming increasingly wary of conducting operations in Germany due to what they view as a potentially unreliable energy supply. The European Institute for Climate and Energy EIKE) here reports that:
"One fifth of every industrial company has moved activities to foreign countries, or plans to do so, because of the uncertain energy and raw material supply. This is the result of a survey conducted by the German Chamber of Industry and Commerce (DIHK), in which 1520 companies participated. DIHK-President Hans Heinrich Driftmann finds this alarming: Here, fears that Germany is losing its appeal for foreign investors in the wake of it’s energy supply transformation.”

No wonder Environment Minister Röttgen plans to take drastic measures in curbing solar energy. Germany’s industrial economy is eroding rapidly. Prof. Dr. Dieter Ameling, a former steel industry leader and spokesman, recently said the (green) energy supply transition in Germany meant the downfall of energy intensive industry in Germany.

Unfortunately greens don’t understand that transferring clean, high-standard German industry to foreign, low-standard countries means more CO2 emissions and pollution, and not less. And they certainly do not understand even the most basic laws of economics. Germany’s Renewable Energy Feed-In Act is proof.

Kook greens in Canada think solar power is for free!

Finally here’s hippie David Suzuki (3 min. mark) saying “It’s free, man, it’s free!”

With idiots like that advising governments, we’re not surprised everything is going bankrupt.


Solar Stocks Plunge as Germany Vows to Quicken Subsidy Cuts

Solar stocks plunged around the world after Germany, the largest market for panels, said it will make quicker cuts to subsidized rates and phase out support for the industry by 2017.

Chinese manufacturers listed in New York fell for a second day, with Trina Solar Ltd. and JA Solar Holdings Co. skidding 17 percent over the two-day period. GCL-Poly Energy Holdings Ltd., which makes the raw material for most panels, fell the most since November in Hong Kong. In Europe, Meyer Burger Technology AG, Solarworld AG and SMA Solar Technology AG dropped at least 5.3 percent each today.

German Environment Minister Norbert Roettgen said last night that he planned to reduce feed-in tariffs providing above- market prices for solar power every month instead of twice a year as he does now. He said he's working to curb an “unacceptable” surge in installations last year.

“It was clear that Roettgen would accelerate feed-in tariff digressions which would remove the bloom from the rose,” Jesse Pichel, an analyst for Jefferies Group Inc., said today. “This will remove the ability for the German market to materially upside estimates.”

Yesterday's decision indicated ministers are speeding up efforts to restrain the boom in installations after developers added 7.5 gigawatts of panels last year, surpassing the 3 gigawatts that Roettgen said would be acceptable.

Government Concern

Economy Minister Philipp Roesler has said spiraling costs linked to solar subsidies are a threat to the economy. Roettgen on Jan. 18 indicated concern that the funds are benefiting Chinese companies.

“The increase in installations in the past few years has gone far beyond what we had targeted in our legislation,” Roettgen said yesterday. He said the subsidy overhaul would be handled “quickly.”

Gordon Johnson, the Axiom Capital Management Inc. analyst who last week removed his “sell” recommendation on First Solar Inc. for the first time since 2008, cut his guidance again, giving five other solar companies a “sell” rating too.

“That was short,” he said in a note to clients. “We believe a severe cut in global demand is near.”

The higher frequency in cuts will do away with the year-end rushes of the past and may help bring installation “closer toward” the government's target, Solarworld Chief Executive Officer Frank Asbeck said by phone yesterday.

A slowdown in the German and Italian markets, which accounted for about half of worldwide installations last year, is bound to hurt the industry. Germany targets 2.5 to 3.5 gigawatts a year and seeks to phase out subsidies by 2017, Roettgen said.

The minister will propose aggressive cuts to fend off the “very real possibility” of a cap on installations, Pichel said.

The country was expected to cut tariffs by 15 percent in July, following a 15 percent reduction that took effect Jan. 1. Under the current law, lower rates are imposed automatically by above-target installations.



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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