An August Senate Environment and Public Works Oversight Report exposes dirty little secrets leading up to the Obama administration’s latest massive EPA power play.
Titled “Obama’s Carbon Mandate: An Account of Collusion, Cutting Corners, and Costing Americans Billions” it chronicles collaborative sue-and-settle tactics between EPA and environmental activist groups ( the Natural Resources Defense Council in particular) which have cornered out public awareness and input in the rule making process. (See my Dec. 16, 2014 Newsmax article “Special Interests Influence Costly EPA Regs.”)
As reported, “EPA initially agreed to finalize rules for new, modified, and existing sources by May 2012, less than a year and a half after the settlement was reached and well within President Obama’s first and potentially only term.” The supposedly non-partisan agency held back from releasing their plans which they recognized could cause a political “train wreck” of public backlash for Obama’s reelection bid along with disastrous Democrat midterm election impacts.
Now, just in time to provide a nakedly sensational burlesque feature at December climate conference talks in Paris, the finally outed version of the Clean Power Plan mandates that states cut carbon emissions by 32 percent (from 2005 levels) by 2030, up from the 30 percent reduction proposed in EPA’s earlier June 2014 plan. Renewables will then make up 28 percent of U.S. electrical capacity, about 6 times more than the less than 5 percent today.
Incidentally, 2030 is also a timeline when many scientists project that Earth will enter a new “little ice age” caused by observed periodic changes in the Sun’s magnetic cycles. If they are correct, reliance upon breezy and cloudy intermittent energy “alternatives” won’t likely warm the hearts, souls and frigid homes of northern latitude residents.
They will only endanger electrical reliability, strain grids and potentially lead to power brownouts. (Think Europe, for example.)
And by the way, satellite records indicate that the allegedly terrifying global warming which all of this CO2 regulation is supposed to cap seems to have stopped without any EPA help nearly two decades ago. Not that this really matters, of course, when a top priority presidential planet-saving legacy is at stake.
Besides, none of this actually had much of anything to do with CO2 climate “pollution” anyway. Explaining the real purpose of the upcoming Paris talks, U.N. official Christiana Figures enthusiastically proclaimed:
“This is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time, to change the [capitalist free market] economic development model that has been reigning for the, at least, 150 years since the Industrial Revolution.”
The sweeping new not-so-clean-power EPA rules will effectively nationalize control over power generation and consumption, thereby usurping authority previously exercised by individual states. Compliance will require state legislatures to pass new laws or regulations to shift energy mixes from fossil fuels to heavily subsidized wind and solar, impose costly and useless carbon cap-and-trade programs, or both.
EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy recently estimated that the rules will cost $8.4 billion annually by 2030, with total benefits — including public health — between $34 billion and $54 billion. Have no doubt that this projection involved double-counting benefits derived from rules already on the books, just as they did in their mercury rule.
The Heritage Foundation estimates that the new rule will cost about 500,000 lost jobs, close to $100 billion annually in lost GDP output, and more than $1,000 per year in higher household energy expenditures. NERA Economic Consulting estimates that the plan will cost $366 billion through 2031 and bring double-digit electricity rate increases to 43 states.
States can resist, and many plan to do so. Recognizing that Feds lack the money, personnel and political sway to overcome boycotts, Governors of Oklahoma, Mississippi, Wisconsin, Indiana, Texas, and Louisiana have already decided that compliance costs will far exceed risks and penalties for declining to go along.
States that derive the majority of their electricity from coal will be hurt most. More than a dozen of them have vowed to ignore the blatantly overreaching intrusions upon their authority plus sue EPA.
Even the Supreme Court is belatedly showing signs of impatience with EPA abuses of statutory powers. Slapping down a 2012 rule to reduce mercury and other emissions targeted on killing the coal industry they observed that “When an agency claims to discover in a long-extant statute unheralded power to regulate a significant portion of the economy, we typically greet its announcement with a measure of skepticism.”
The court also warned that “We expect Congress to speak clearly if it wishes to assign to an agency decisions of vast economic and political significance.”
Allowing further erosion of their constitutional legislative responsibility will bring dirty shame on them if they don’t.
Larry Bell is an endowed professor of space architecture at the University of Houston where he founded the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture (SICSA) and the graduate program in space architecture. He is the author of “Scared Witless: Prophets and Profits of Climate Doom”(2015) and “Climate of Corruption: Politics and Power Behind the Global Warming Hoax” (2012). Read more of his reports — Click Here Now.
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