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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Why Poor Countries Won't Curb Emmissions

Uncommon Sense

Why Poor Countries Won't Curb Emissions

Forbes.com Shikha Dalmia

07.15.09, 12:01 AM EDT

If I were an environmental activist, I would be despairing right around now about ever getting meaningful action on global warming. Over the last eight years, eco-warriors had managed to convince themselves that the main obstacle to their grand designs to recalibrate the Earth's thermostat was a stupid and callow U.S. president unwilling to lead the rest of the world.

But with Barack Obama in office they no longer have that problem. In fact, they have a charismatic and savvy spokesman who combines a deep commitment to their cause with considerable powers of persuasion. Yet his call to action at last week's G-8 summit in Italy yielded little more than polite applause, and that only when he issued a mea culpa. "I know that in the past, the United States has sometimes fallen short of meeting our responsibilities," he said amid cheers. "So let me be clear: Those days are over."

What did this brave self-flagellation yield? To be sure, he got the attendees to collectively declare that they would never ever let the Earth's temperature rise two degrees centigrade from pre-industrial levels. This is supposedly a prelude to the real horse-trading over emissions cuts that will begin in a Copenhagen, Denmark, meeting this December.

But the depressing thing for climate warriors was that Obama could not get developing countries, without whose cooperation there is simply no way to avert climate change, to accept--even just in theory--the idea of binding emissions cuts. India's prime minister took the occasion to position his country as a major victim of a problem not of its making. "What we are witnessing today is the consequence [of] over two centuries of industrial activity and high-consumption lifestyles in the developed world," he lectured. "They have to bear this historical responsibility." And even before the summit began, China declared the West had "no right" to ask it to limit its economic growth.

Rather than engage with the issues, eco-pundits are grasping for all kinds of fanciful pseudo-scientific theories to explain why Obama's sweet-talking ways are leaving the rest of the world cold. New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof, for instance, recently blamed the lack of progress on the faulty circuitry evolution has wired into the human brain. According to Kristof, evolution has programmed us to be alert to immediate threats, such as snakes, or enemies with clubs, but not for vastly greater but less imminent dangers that require forethought. If this sounds like a warmed-over, 21st-century version of the Calvinistic crooked-timber view of human nature, that's because it is.

Not to be outdone, Kristof's Nobel Prize-winning colleague at the Times, Paul Krugman, pulled out the folk story about the frog and the boiling pot in his latest column to explain our collective torpor over climate change. Just as the proverbial frog wasn't able to feel the gradually rising temperature before he boiled to death, so too, in Krugman's telling, human beings are not equipped to comprehend the dangers of an overheating planet before they fry to death.

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But this psychologizing only exposes the inability of climate activists to take seriously the rational case for inaction. In fact, there is a perfectly good reason developing countries are unwilling to act on climate change: What they are being asked to do is more awful than climate change's implications--even if one accepts all the alarmist predictions.

Consider what would be necessary to slash global greenhouse-gas emissions just 50% below 2000 levels by 2050--a far less aggressive goal than what the enviros say is necessary to avert climate catastrophe. According to U.S. Chamber of Commerce calculations, even if the West reduced its emissions by 80% below 2000 levels, developing countries would still have to return their emissions to 2000 levels to meet the 50% target. However, Indians currently consume roughly 15 times less energy per capita than Americans--and Chinese consume seven times less. Asking them, along with the rest of the developing world, to go back to 2000 emission levels with a 2050 population would mean putting them on a very drastic energy diet.

The human toll of this is unfathomable: It would require these countries to abandon plans to ever conquer poverty, of course. But beyond that it would require a major scaling back of living standards under which their middle classes--for whom three square meals, cars and air-conditioning are only now beginning to come within reach--would have to go back to subsistence living, and the hundreds of millions who are at subsistence would have to accept starvation.
In short, the choice for developing countries is between mass death due to the consequences of an overheated planet sometime in the distant future, and mass suicide due to imposed instant starvation right now. Is it any surprise that they are reluctant to jump on the global-warming bandwagon?

The Waxman-Markey climate change bill that just passed the U.S. House of Representatives wants to force developing countries to accept this fate by resorting to the old and tired method of protectionism. Should this monstrosity become law, starting in 2020 the United States will impose carbon tariffs on goods from any country that does not accept binding reductions. But this is a path to mutually assured economic destruction--not to combating climate change.

For starters, by 2020, when these tariffs go into effect, India and China--with GDPs projected to grow anywhere from 6% to 10% annually--will have much bigger economies with huge domestic markets that they are increasingly opening to each other. Thus they might well be better off forgoing access to the U.S. market than accepting crippling restrictions on their growth.

Also, by then they will also have more economic clout on the world stage to enforce their own ideas of who ought to take moral responsibility for climate change. The West's case for restricting Indian and Chinese exports rests on the claim that these countries' total emissions will exceed those from the West within the next few decades. (China's emissions are already at par with those of the U.S., the biggest emitter).

But these countries have, and will continue to have, far lower emissions on a per-capita basis, given that China's are now around one-fifth those of the United States and India's one-twentieth. Thus they would have an equally valid case for imposing countervailing restrictions on American exports based on per-capita emissions. The West might well be the bigger loser in this economic warfare if it is barred from accessing new, growing markets.

Obama obviously understands this--which is why he has condemned the House's turn down the protectionist path. So what should climate warriors do? Right now the only certain way to save lives is by calling off this misguided war on climate change. If and when climate change promises to claim more casualties than poverty and starvation, the world will begin heeding their calls. If, however, these climate-change casualties don't materialize, there would have been no need to act in the first place. Either way, the world has far more immediate and scarier problems than climate change to address right now.

Monday, July 6, 2009

EPA Silences a Climate Skeptic

Wall Street Journal
July 6, 2009

The EPA Silences a Climate Skeptic

The professional penalty for offering a contrary view to elites like Al Gore is a smear campaign.
By KIMBERLEY A. STRASSEL

Wherever Jim Hansen is right now -- whatever speech the "censored" NASA scientist is giving -- perhaps he'll find time to mention the plight of Alan Carlin. Though don't count on it.

Mr. Hansen, as everyone in this solar system knows, is the director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies. Starting in 2004, he launched a campaign against the Bush administration, claiming it was censoring his global-warming thoughts and fiddling with the science. It was all a bit of a hoot, given Mr. Hansen was already a world-famous devotee of the theory of man-made global warming, a reputation earned with some 1,400 speeches he'd given, many while working for Mr. Bush. But it gave Democrats a fun talking point, one the Obama team later picked up.

So much so that one of President Barack Obama's first acts was a memo to agencies demanding new transparency in government, and science. The nominee to head the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Lisa Jackson, joined in, exclaiming, "As administrator, I will ensure EPA's efforts to address the environmental crises of today are rooted in three fundamental values: science-based policies and program, adherence to the rule of law, and overwhelming transparency." In case anyone missed the point, Mr. Obama took another shot at his predecessors in April, vowing that "the days of science taking a backseat to ideology are over."

Except, that is, when it comes to Mr. Carlin, a senior analyst in the EPA's National Center for Environmental Economics and a 35-year veteran of the agency. In March, the Obama EPA prepared to engage the global-warming debate in an astounding new way, by issuing an "endangerment" finding on carbon. It establishes that carbon is a pollutant, and thereby gives the EPA the authority to regulate it -- even if Congress doesn't act.

Around this time, Mr. Carlin and a colleague presented a 98-page analysis arguing the agency should take another look, as the science behind man-made global warming is inconclusive at best. The analysis noted that global temperatures were on a downward trend. It pointed out problems with climate models. It highlighted new research that contradicts apocalyptic scenarios. "We believe our concerns and reservations are sufficiently important to warrant a serious review of the science by EPA," the report read.

The response to Mr. Carlin was an email from his boss, Al McGartland, forbidding him from "any direct communication" with anyone outside of his office with regard to his analysis. When Mr. Carlin tried again to disseminate his analysis, Mr. McGartland decreed: "The administrator and the administration have decided to move forward on endangerment, and your comments do not help the legal or policy case for this decision. . . . I can only see one impact of your comments given where we are in the process, and that would be a very negative impact on our office." (Emphasis added.)

Mr. McGartland blasted yet another email: "With the endangerment finding nearly final, you need to move on to other issues and subjects. I don't want you to spend any additional EPA time on climate change. No papers, no research etc, at least until we see what EPA is going to do with Climate." Ideology? Nope, not here. Just us science folk. Honest.

The emails were unearthed by the Competitive Enterprise Institute. Republican officials are calling for an investigation; House Energy Committee ranking member Joe Barton sent a letter with pointed questions to Mrs. Jackson, which she's yet to answer. The EPA has issued defensive statements, claiming Mr. Carlin wasn't ignored. But there is no getting around that the Obama administration has flouted its own promises of transparency.

The Bush administration's great sin, for the record, was daring to issue reports that laid out the administration's official position on global warming. That the reports did not contain the most doomsday predictions led to howls that the Bush politicals were suppressing and ignoring career scientists.

The Carlin dustup falls into a murkier category. Unlike annual reports, the Obama EPA's endangerment finding is a policy act. As such, EPA is required to make public those agency documents that pertain to the decision, to allow for public comment. Court rulings say rulemaking records must include both "the evidence relied upon and the evidence discarded." In refusing to allow Mr. Carlin's study to be circulated, the agency essentially hid it from the docket.

Unable to defend the EPA's actions, the climate-change crew -- , led by anonymous EPA officials -- is doing what it does best: trashing Mr. Carlin as a "denier." He is, we are told, "only" an economist (he in fact holds a degree in physics from CalTech). It wasn't his "job" to look at this issue (he in fact works in an office tasked with "informing important policy decisions with sound economics and other sciences.") His study was full of sham science. (The majority of it in fact references peer-reviewed studies.) Where's Mr. Hansen and his defense of scientific freedom when you really need him?

Mr. Carlin is instead an explanation for why the science debate is little reported in this country. The professional penalty for offering a contrary view to elites like Al Gore is a smear campaign. The global-warming crowd likes to deride skeptics as the equivalent of the Catholic Church refusing to accept the Copernican theory. The irony is that, today, it is those who dare critique the new religion of human-induced climate change who face the Inquisition.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Carbonated Congress

Wall Street Journal

The Carbonated Congress

Orszag nails it: The 'largest corporate welfare program' ever.

July 4th, 2009

President Obama is calling the climate bill that the House passed last week an "extraordinary" achievement, and so it is. The 1,200-page wonder manages the supreme feat of being both hugely expensive while doing almost nothing to reduce carbon emissions.

The Washington press corps is playing the bill's 219-212 passage as a political triumph, even though one of five Democrats voted against it. The real story is what Speaker Nancy Pelosi, House baron Henry Waxman and the President himself had to concede to secure even that eyelash margin among the House's liberal majority. Not even Tom DeLay would have imagined the extravaganza of log-rolling, vote-buying, outright corporate bribes, side deals, subsidies and policy loopholes. Every green goal, even taken on its own terms, was watered down or given up for the sake of political rents.

Begin with the supposed point of the exercise -- i.e., creating an artificial scarcity of carbon in the name of climate change. The House trimmed Mr. Obama's favored 25% reduction by 2020 to 17% in order to win over Democrats leery of imposing a huge upfront tax on their constituents; then they raised the reduction to 83% in the out-years to placate the greens. Even that 17% is not binding, since it would be largely reached with so-called offsets, through which some businesses subsidize others to make emissions reductions that probably would have happened anyway.

Even if the law works as intended, over the next decade or two real U.S. greenhouse emissions might be reduced by 2% compared to business as usual. However, consumers would still face higher prices for electric power, transportation and most goods and services as this inefficient and indirect tax flowed down the energy chain.

The sound bite is that this policy would only cost households "a postage stamp a day." But that's true only as long as the program doesn't really cut emissions. The goal here is to tell voters they'll pay nothing in order to get the cap-and-tax bureaucracy in place -- even though the whole idea is to raise prices to change American behavior. At the same time -- wink, wink -- Democrats tell the greens they can tighten the emissions vise gradually over time.

Meanwhile, Congress had to bribe every business or interest that could afford a competent lobbyist. Carbon permits are valuable, yet the House says only 28% of the allowances would be auctioned off; the rest would be given away. In March, White House budget director Peter Orszag told Congress that "If you didn't auction the permit, it would represent the largest corporate welfare program that has ever been enacted in the history of the United States."
Naturally, Democrats did exactly that. To avoid windfall profits, they then chose to control prices, asking state regulators to require utilities to use the free permits to insulate ratepayers from price increases. (This also obviates the anticarbon incentives, but never mind.) Auctions would reduce political favoritism and interference, as well as provide revenue to cut taxes to offset higher energy costs. But auctions don't buy votes.

Then there was the peace treaty signed with Agriculture Chairman Colin Peterson, which banned the EPA from studying the carbon produced by corn ethanol and transferred farm emissions to the Ag Department, which mainly exists to defend farm subsidies. Not to mention the 310-page trade amendment that was introduced at 3:09 a.m. When Congress voted on the bill later that day, the House clerk didn't even have an official copy.

The revisions were demanded by coal-dependent Rust Belt Democrats to require tariffs on goods from countries that don't also reduce their emissions. Democrats were thus admitting that the critics are right that this new energy tax would send U.S. jobs overseas. But instead of voting no, their price for voting yes is to impose another tax on imports from China and India, among others. So a Smoot-Hawley green tariff is now official Democratic policy.

Mr. Obama's lobbyists first acquiesced to this tariff change to get the bill passed. Afterwards the President said he disliked "sending any protectionist signals" amid a world recession, but he refused to say whether this protectionism was enough to veto the bill. Then in a Saturday victory lap, he talked about green jobs and a new clean energy economy, but he made no reference to cap and trade -- no doubt because he knows that energy taxes are unpopular and that the bill faces an even tougher slog in the Senate.

Mr. Obama wants something tangible to take to the U.N. climate confab in Denmark in December, but the more important issue is what this exercise says about his approach to governance. The President seems to believe that the Carter and Clinton Presidencies failed by fighting too much with Democrats in Congress. So his solution is to abdicate his agenda to Congress -- first the stimulus, now cap and trade, and soon health care. We wish he had told us he was running to be Prime Minister.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Cooling the Global Economy

Will The Global Warming Bill Cool The Global Economy?

Nouriel Roubini, 07.02.09, Forbes Magazine

Last Friday, the U.S. House of Representatives approved the landmark American Clean Energy and Security Act by a narrow seven-vote margin, including 44 "no" votes from Democrats. The legislation, also known as Waxman-Markey (after its sponsors) or the "climate bill," will face an even tougher audience in the Senate, where it must meet a 60-vote threshold.

The Minnesota Supreme Court's decision to seat Al Franken in the Senate may add to the Democrats' leverage. The bill aims to cut 2005 emissions levels by 17% by 2020 and has at its core a cap-and-trade system that calls for mandatory caps on greenhouse gas emissions. Any companies wishing to emit above a certain level will need to purchase permits to do so.

Additionally, the bill requires large utilities to increase their use of renewable energies such as hydro, wind, solar and geothermal power generation.

The bill's passage by the House is historic and will likely increase President Obama's leverage in global climate negotiations as global leaders try to replace the soon-to-expire Kyoto Protocol. Detractors, though, point to its economic costs and the limited nature of the final legislation

How the Bill Works

At the heart of the bill is a cap-and-trade system, a market-based system that caps emissions at a certain level and allows large emitters to buy permits for additional emissions from other companies that emit less than the upper limit. The legislation calls for the number of permits to be reduced over time to encourage lower emissions. In practice, establishing a market for these permits will increase the cost of using carbon-based energy (especially electricity from coal), which will in turn reduce demand.

The revenue earned through auctioning would be distributed among households to offset the negative effect on their purchasing power from the higher cost of energy. Initial plans called for all, or at least a majority, of the permits to be auctioned, but the vote-getting process increased the number allocated. The bill passed by the House calls for 85% to be allocated and 15% to be auctioned. Some of the allocated permits will go to utility companies, the idea being that they will either invest the proceeds in renewable fuels or temper price increases for consumers. This change reduces the potential revenue generation of the policy and runs the risk that low electricity costs could actually encourage greater usage.

Cost Estimates

Estimates of the total economic costs of the U.S. cap-and-trade program have varied widely. According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the net annual economic cost of the program in 2020 would be $22 billion--or about $175 per household. Analysis of the CBO results suggests that the implicit tax is relatively progressive. While this estimate has been accused of being understated (and it is worth noting that the Environmental Protection Agency came to an even lower estimate), it presented a baseline for analysis.

Other estimates put the ultimate cost much higher. An analysis from the Heritage Foundation concludes that the cap-and-trade system described in the bill would cost the economy $161 billion by 2020--or about $1,870 per household. Such estimates do not necessarily account for changes in the price of energy that would occur naturally as a lack of investment limits production of fossil-fuel-based energy.

Furthermore, they may not fully include the technological and efficiency gains that the current legislation hopes to encourage. For example, some of the allocations to utilities are granted with the expectation that they will be auctioned off and the proceeds will be used to fund renewable energy development. It's worth noting, however, that there's no guarantee the utilities will do this in practice.

Sector-by-Sector Impact

Where the U.S. is concerned, the likely impact of the new price for carbon varies by sector. Utilities are likely to be the most affected, especially in those regions that derive much of their power from coal-fired plants. The Midwest, the country's already-shrinking industrial and manufacturing base and the home of many of its coal-fired plants, seems particularly vulnerable. (The distribution of allowances in the legislation is intended to find the funds to improve competitiveness of coal plants.)

The effects on agriculture are also varied. Recent Deutsche Bank ( DB - news - people ) research suggests that no-till agriculture, which limits disturbance of the soil, as well as reforestation and planting of vegetative buffers, could derive significant carbon credits annually under a cap-and-trade regime. By some counts, up to 20% of U.S. carbon emissions come from the release of carbon dioxide from farmland.

However, the bill puts off to the future one contentious issue--the promotion of agricultural land to grow corn for ethanol, which critics suggest is very inefficient and contributed to global food shortages in 2008. The legislators also chose the Department of Agriculture, more likely to be sympathetic to farmers concerns, rather than the EPA, to be the regulator for approving carbon offsets.

The oil and metals sectors may also face vulnerabilities. Some analysts worry that emissions standards would encourage companies to keep inventories low and to import more refined fuels, contributing to idle capacity in U.S. refineries. However, it may also encourage the creation of cleaner processes or the development of carbon capture technologies, which are as yet far from being commercial. Overall, businesses have supported establishing a climate regime, given that clarity over regulatory responses is key to planning. However, there are still many uncertainties about how such a regime will be implemented.

Trade Concerns

There is also a growing fear that climate change policies could prompt trade protectionist policies. The risk that higher costs might accelerate a decline in the U.S. manufacturing base as more production is moved offshore has contributed to the suggestion that compensatory import taxes might be placed on carbon-intensive imported goods. President Obama, in saluting the bill's passage, did insist that the U.S. not discriminate against imports. Doing so might lead to retaliatory protectionism and a further hit to trade. In a report released last week, the World Trade Organization (WTO) suggested that import taxes might be WTO-compliant if they limit distortions. Paul Krugman suggests that the WTO's view is analogous to that for value added taxes.

However, Martin Feldstein notes that the system could be very complex. With different countries each having country-specific caps and different tariffs, it could be very difficult to assess how comparable the measures are and what remedies might be needed. Thus, the implications for international trade and trade law could be quite significant. Moreover, developing countries are petitioning for trade restrictions on carbon-reducing technologies to be lifted, or for technology transfer of such goods. The mostly advanced-economy companies who developed such expertise have been reluctant to cut prices.

Other Efficiency Steps

The administration's energy policy more broadly tries to offset potential costs with new opportunities and technological advances to boost productivity growth. It aims to generate 25% of U.S. energy from renewable sources by 2025, create "green jobs" and reduce dependence on imported oil. Projects to develop renewable fuels and improve the efficiency of the power grid received funding in the stimulus bill, in part to offset the impact of the triple shock of lower energy demand, lower credit and lower hydrocarbon prices on renewable producers. President Obama's team plans to spend $150 billion over the next decade to promote energy from solar, wind and other renewable sources, as well as energy conservation.

Other key steps include the May 2009 auto efficiency program, which requires the American fleet to increase to an average mileage standard of 39 miles per gallon (mpg) for cars and 30 mpg for trucks by 2016--a jump from the current average for all vehicles of 25 miles per gallon. Doing so would create a new national standard, after many states have unilaterally taken more aggressive steps. A national standard could make it easier for car companies to supply different jurisdictions.

Government estimates that oil consumption may fall 1.8 billion barrels from 2012 to 2016 and greenhouse gas emissions by 900 million metric tons could be overoptimistic. They may, however, be more effective than the recently announced "cash for clunkers" program in which consumers receive a rebate for a new, more fuel-efficient, vehicle if they turn in a gas guzzler. Yet the required fuel-efficiency increase is rather low (only 4 mpg), and the threshold is lower than the current national average.

As such, the latter policy, which has been effective in stoking auto demand in countries like China, Germany and South Korea, might have limited effect in the U.S. However, the effects of such incentives may be temporary. If they elapse without a sustained increase in consumption, demand for autos could fall quickly, especially in developed economies, which already have a high number of cars per household.

These initiatives together hope to reduce the amount of oil the U.S. imports. The bulk of energy imports (oil, gas and electricity) come not from the Middle East but from Canada. An increasing amount of the oil supplied is bitumen from the oil sands, which continues to bear an expensive environmental and economic cost per barrel under current technology. Bitumen's carbon footprint is improving, though, through technological innovation--and the fuel expended in transport is clearly lower than the amount needed to ship oil from Saudi Arabia. Yet there is still a long way to go.

Given the shift toward energy efficiency and lower-emissions fuel supply, Canadian authorities and producers are struggling to improve production so that their largest consumer will keep buying. On President Obama's visit to Ottawa, his first foreign trip as president, he and Prime Minister Harper announced joint investment in carbon capture technology, adding to funds already pledged by the province of Alberta. Such measures hope to help the U.S. meet energy security needs without adding to environmental insecurity. However, carbon capture technology is still far from being commercial.

One of the biggest benefits of this legislation is that it provides a mechanism to set a price for carbon over the mid-term. Doing so will help households and businesses make investment and savings decisions. However, economists have long argued that a carbon tax would be more efficient than a cap-and-trade system, as it would be less complex and vulnerable to distortions. A carbon tax would set a specific cost per unit of carbon dioxide, thus establishing a clear cost for carbon. A cap-and-trade system, on the other hand, would set an upper limit for emissions, but the prices it established for carbon might be variable. Of course, introducing new taxes is rarely popular, particularly not during a recession, even if the tax option would be more efficient and have lower compliance costs.

The European Union's experience with cap-and-trade over the past several years provides reason for caution. The first iteration of the policy issued too many permits, undermining demand. With prices for carbon low, so was the incentive to reduce emissions. A reformulation improved this balance, and emissions have been reduced, though European countries still have a significant space to reach their targets. The E.U. system allows companies to bank or store their allocations for the future or to borrow them from the future. The E.U. system also illustrates an effect of the global recession. The drastic reduction in industrial output has meant that many companies are producing well lower than their quotas and are seeking to sell their excess allocation. Several companies sought to raise cash by selling their carbon certificates, causing the price of carbon to plummet. A market-derived carbon price might actually be very volatile.

The Road to Copenhagen

World leaders will meet this December in Copenhagen to negotiate a replacement to the Kyoto Protocol, which expires in 2012. Kyoto aimed at reducing emissions of 1990 greenhouse gases levels by 5.2% by 2012. The range that is now being discussed is around 25% to 40% of 1990 levels by 2020. The previous U.S. administration withdrew from ratifying Kyoto, saying it deemed the protocol unfair for allocating reductions targets between developed and developing countries. The reluctance of emerging-market economies to make emissions cuts that might stunt their growth could again be an obstacle to a deal later this year.

The U.S. and China are the world's top two greenhouse gas emitters, together accounting for more than 40% of annual emissions. If the two can become catalysts in bringing about a strategic transformation to a low-carbon, sustainable global economy, the world will take a giant step forward in combating climate change. Given the complexities of global discussions, analysts like Kenneth Lieberthal suggest that climate change is yet another policy arena that could be best tackled by a G-2, that is bilateral talks by the two countries.

My Rant

The claim that climate change is direct result of man's energy consumption is simply unproven and politically motivated. While they propound lies that certain lightbulbs or cars will destroy the earth and raise ocean levels as much as 20 feet within the next century, fascists, like Al Gore, fly around in their Gulfstream jets and live in homes that use 22 times the energy of an average American's home! Their propaganda is outrageous and potentially catastrophic for the economies of United States, the developed world and developing world.

The proof of global warming or man's influence on climate change is not settled science. Just consider the source of the big lie: the proselytizing hypocritical high priest of the pagan environmental religion Al Gore or the other Kool-Aid drinking climateers from the left such as Learjet liberals, Hollywood high school drop-outs, billonaire elitists, the left-leaning mainstream media, the United Nations, academia, environmental radicals, socialists, other anti-capitalists and so called "researchers", "experts" and/or "scientists" whose paychecks depend upon the apparent existence of the "issue".

United States energy conservation and independence is a worthy goal that should be supported by Republicans, the Democrat Party, true Democrats, Independents and environmentalists. Energy independence is a major national security concern. However, lying to our people, implementing the cap & trade boondoggle which will crush our economy or doing anything that will cause the United States to transfer an portion of its sovereignty to the United Nations is idiotic. Not in my name!