Tag Archives: global warming

Cap and trade, Global warming, Energy Myths and Realities, drive up the cost of fossil energy, Lies exposed, loss of jobs, CO2 emissions, UVU Symposium on Environmental Ethics, Utah Valley University, Keith O. Rattie, Questar Corporation

First of all, I would like to thank the Watts up with that blog for bringing this to my attention. Visit there regularly for the truth and facts regarding Global warming, climate change and other Earth science data.

http://wattsupwiththat.com

The following speech was given by Keith O. Rattie, Chairman, President and CEO of Questar Corporation, on April 2, 2009, at the 22nd Annual UVU Symposium on Environmental Ethics, held at Utah Valley University. The PDF text of the speech can be found here:

http://www.questar.com/news/2009_news/UVUSpeech.pdf

 

“Energy Myths and Realities
Keith O. Rattie
Chairman, President and CEO
Questar Corporation
Utah Valley University
April 2, 2009

Good morning, everyone. I‟m honored to join you today.

I see a lot of faculty in the audience, but I‟m going to address my remarks today primarily to you students of this fine school.

Thirty-three years ago I was where you are today, about to graduate (with a degree in electrical engineering), trying to decide what to do with my career. I chose to go to work for an energy company – Chevron – on what turned out to be a false premise: I believed that by the time I reached the age I am today that America and the world would no longer be running on fossil fuels. Chevron was pouring money into alternatives – and they had lots of money and the incentive to find alternatives – and I wanted to be part of the transition.

Fast forward 33 years. Today, you students are being told that before you reach my age America and the world must stop using fossil fuels.
I‟m going to try to do something that seems impossible these days – and that‟s have an honest conversation about energy policy, global warming and what proposed „cap and trade‟ regulation means for you, the generation that will have to live with the consequences of the policy choices we make. My goal is to inform you with easily verifiable facts – not hype and propaganda – and to appeal to your common sense. But first a few words about Questar.

Questar Corp. is the largest public company headquartered in Utah, one of only two Utah-based companies in the S&P 500. Most of you know Questar Corp. as the parent of Questar Gas, the utility that sends you your natural gas bill every month. But outside of Utah and to investors we‟re known as one of America‟s fastest-growing natural gas producers. We also own a natural gas pipeline company. We have terrific people running each of our five major business units, and I‟m proud of what they‟ve done to transform this 85-year old company. We‟re the only Utah-based company ever to make the Business Week magazine annual ranking of the 50 top-performing companies in the S&P 500 – we were #5 in both 2007 and 2008, and we‟re #18 in the top 50 in Business Week’s 2009 ranking, just out this week.

At Questar our mission is simple: we find, produce and deliver clean energy that makes modern life possible. We focus on natural gas, and that puts us in the “sweet spot” of America‟s energy future and the global-warming debate. Natural gas currently provides about one-fourth of America‟s energy needs. But when you do the math, the inescapable conclusion is that greater use of natural gas will be a consequence of any policy aimed at cutting human emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2). You cut CO2 emissions by up to 50% when you use natural gas instead of coal to generate electricity. You cut CO2 emissions by 30% and NOx emissions by 90% when you use natural gas instead of gasoline in a car or truck – and here in Utah you save a lot of money. You can run a car on compressed natural gas at a cost of about 80 cents per gallon equivalent. You also cut CO2 emissions by 30-50% when you use natural gas instead of fuel oil or electricity to heat your home.

But you didn‟t come here for a commercial about Questar and I didn‟t come here to give you one. Let‟s talk about energy.

There may be no greater challenge facing mankind today – and your generation in particular – than figuring out how we‟re going to meet the energy needs of a planet that may have 9 billion people living on it by the middle of this century. The magnitude of that challenge becomes even more daunting when you consider that of the 6.5 billion people on the planet today, nearly two billion people don‟t even have electricity – never flipped a light switch.

Now, the “consensus” back in the mid-1970s was that America and the world were running out of oil. Ironically, some in the media were also claiming a scientific consensus that the planet was cooling, fossil fuels could be to blame, and we were all going to freeze to death unless we kicked our fossil-fuel habit. We were told we needed to find alternatives to oil – fast. That task, we were told, was too important to leave to markets, so government needed to intervene with massive taxpayer subsidies for otherwise uneconomic forms of energy. That thinking led to the now infamous 1977 National Energy Plan, an experiment with central planning that failed miserably. Fast-forward to today, and: déjà vu. This time the fear is not so much that we‟re running out of oil, but that we‟re running out of time – the earth is getting hotter, humans are to blame, and we‟re all doomed if we don‟t stop using fossil fuels – fast. Once again we‟re being told that the job is too important to be left to markets.

Well, the doomsters of the 1970s turned out to be remarkably wrong. My bet is that today‟s doomsters will be proven wrong. Over the past 39 years mankind has consumed nearly twice the world‟s known oil reserves in 1970 – and today proven oil reserves are nearly double what they were before we started. The story with natural gas is even better – here and around the world enormous amounts of natural gas have been found. More will be found. And guess what? The 30-year cooling trend that led to the global cooling scare in the mid-70s abruptly ended in the late 70s, replaced by a 20-year warming trend that peaked in 1998.
The lesson that we should‟ve learned from the 1970s is that when it comes to deciding how much energy gets used, what types of energy get used, and where, how and by whom energy gets used –that job is too important not to be left to markets.

Now, I‟d love to stand here and debate the science of global warming. The media of course long ago declared that debate over – global warming is a planetary emergency, we‟ve got to change the way we live now. I‟ve followed this debate closely for over 15 years. I read everything I get my hands on. I‟m an engineer, so I tend to be skeptical when journalists hyperventilate about science – “World coming to an end – details at 11”. My research convinces me that claims of a scientific consensus about global warming mislead the public and policy makers – and may reflect another agenda.

Yes, planet earth does appear to be warming – but by a not so unusual and not so alarming one degree over the past 100 years. Indeed, global average temperatures have increased by about one degree per century since the end of the so-called Little Ice Age 250 years ago. And, yes CO2 levels in the upper atmosphere have increased over the past 250 years from about 280 parts per million to about 380 parts per million today – that‟s .00038. What that number tells you is that CO2 – the gas we all exhale, the gas in a Diet Coke, the gas that plants need to grow – is a trace gas, comprising just four out of every 10,000 molecules in the atmosphere. But it‟s an important trace gas – without CO2 in the atmosphere, there would be no life on earth. And yes, most scientists believe that humans have caused much of that increase.

But that‟s where the alleged consensus ends. Contrary to the righteous certitude we get from some, no one knows how much warming will occur in the future, nor how much of any warming that does occur will be due to man, and how much to nature. No one knows how warming will affect the planet, or how easily people, plants and animals will adapt to any warming that does occur. When someone tells you they do know, I suggest Mark Twain‟s advice: respect those who seek the truth, be wary of those who claim to have found it.

My perspective on global warming changed when I began to understand the limitations of the computer models that scientists have built to predict future warming. If the only variable driving the earth‟s climate were manmade CO2 then there‟d be no debate – global average temperatures would increase by a harmless one degree over the next 100 years. But the earth‟s climate is what engineers call a “non-linear, dynamic system”. The models have dozens of inputs. Many are little more than the opinion of the scientist – in some cases, just a guess. The sun, for example, is by far the biggest driver of the earth‟s climate. But the intensity of solar radiation from the sun varies over time in ways that can‟t be accurately modeled.

Another example, water vapor is a far more potent greenhouse gas than CO2. [The media now calls CO2 a “pollutant”. If CO2 is a “pollutant” then water vapor is also a “pollutant” – that‟s absurd, but I digress]. Some scientists believe clouds amplify human CO2 forcing, others believe precipitation acts as the earth‟s thermostat. But scientists do not agree on how to model clouds, precipitation, and evaporation, thus there‟s no consensus on this fundamental issue.

But the reality for American consumers is that whether you buy that the science is settled or not, the political science is settled. With the media cheering them on, Congress has promised to “do something”. CO2 regulation is coming, whether it will do any good or not. Indeed, President Obama‟s hope of shrinking the now the massive federal budget deficit depends on vast new revenues from a tax on carbon energy – so called “cap and trade”. Harry Reid has promised cap and trade legislation by August.

Under cap-and-trade, the government would try to create a market for CO2 by selling credits to companies that emit CO2. They would set a cap for the maximum amount of CO2 emissions. Over time, the cap would ratchet down. In theory, this will force companies to invest in lower-carbon technologies, thus reducing emissions to avoid the cost of buying credits from other companies that have already met their emissions goals. The costs of the credits would be passed on to consumers. Because virtually everything we do and consume in modern life has a carbon footprint the cost of just about everything will go up. This in theory will cause each of us to choose products that have a lower carbon footprint. Any way you slice it, cap and trade is a tax on the way we live our lives – one designed to produce a windfall for government.

The long term goal with cap and trade is „80 by 50‟– an 80% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2050. Let‟s do the easy math on what „80 by 50‟ means to you, using Utah as an example. Utah‟s carbon footprint today is about 66 MM tons of CO2 per year. Utah‟s population today is 2.6 MM. You divide those two numbers, and the average Utahan today has a carbon footprint of about 25 tons of CO2 per year. An 80% reduction in Utah‟s carbon footprint by 2050 implies a reduction from 66 MM tons today to about 13 MM tons per year by 2050. But Utah‟s population is growing at over 2% per year, so by 2050 there will be about 6 MM people living in this state. 13 MM tons divided by 6 MM people = 2.2 tons per person per year. Under „80 by 50‟ by the time you folks reach my age you‟ll have to live your lives with an annual carbon allowance of no more than 2.2 tons of CO2 per year.

Question: when was the last time Utah‟s carbon footprint was as low as 2.2 tons per person per year? Answer: probably not since Brigham Young and the Mormon pioneers first entered the Salt Lake Valley (1847).

You reach a similar conclusion when you do the math on „80 by 50‟ for the entire U.S. „80 by 50‟ would require a reduction in America‟s CO2 emissions from about 20 tons per person per year today, to about 2 tons per person per year in 2050. When was the last time America‟s carbon footprint was as low as 2 tons per person per year? Probably not since the Pilgrims arrived at Plymouth Rock in 1620.

In short, ‘80 by 50’ means that by the time you folks reach my age, you won’t be allowed to use anything made with – or made possible by – fossil fuels.

So I want to focus you on this critical question: “How on God‟s green earth – pun intended – are you going to do what my generation said we‟d do but didn‟t – and that‟s wean yourselves from fossil fuels in just four decades?” That‟s a question that each of you, and indeed, all Americans need to ask now – because when it comes to “how” there clearly is no consensus. Simply put, with today‟s energy technologies, we can‟t get there from here.

The hallmark of this dilemma is our inability to reconcile our prosperity and our way of life with our environmental ideals. We like our cars. We like our freedom to “move about the country” – drive to work, fly to conferences, visit distant friends and family. We aspire to own the biggest house we can afford. We like to keep our homes and offices warm in the winter, cool in the summer. We like devices that use electricity – computers, flat screen TVs, cell phones, the Internet, and many other conveniences of modern life that come with a power cord. We like food that‟s low cost, high quality, and free of bugs – which means farmers must use fertilizers and pesticides made from fossil fuels. We like things made of plastic and clothes made with synthetic fibers – and all of these things depend on abundant, affordable, growing supplies of energy.

And guess what? We share this planet with 6.2 billion other people who all want the same things.

America‟s energy use has been growing at 1-2% per year, driven by population growth and prosperity. But while our way of life depends on ever-increasing amounts of energy, we‟re downright schizophrenic when it comes to the things that energy companies must do to deliver the energy that makes modern life possible.

We want energy security – we don‟t like being dependent on foreign oil. But we also don‟t like drilling in the U.S. Millions of acres of prospective onshore public lands here in the Rockies plus the entire east and west coast of the U.S. are off-limits to drilling for a variety of reasons. We hate paying $2 per gallon for gasoline – but not as much as we hate the refineries that turn unusable crude oil into gasoline. We haven‟t allowed anyone to build a new refinery in the U.S. in over 30 years. We expect the lights to come on when we flip the switch, but we don‟t like coal, the source of 40% of our electricity – it‟s dirty and mining scars the earth. We also don‟t like nuclear power, the source of nearly 20% of our electricity – it‟s clean, France likes it, but we‟re afraid of it. Hydropower is clean and renewable. But it too has been blacklisted – dams hurt fish.

We don‟t want pollution of any kind, in any amount, but we also don‟t want to be asked: “how much are we willing to pay for environmental perfection?” When it comes to global warming, Time magazine tells us to “be worried, be very worried” – and we say we are – but we don‟t act that way.

Let me suggest that our conversation about how to reduce CO2 emissions must begin with a few “inconvenient” realities.

Reality 1: Worldwide demand for energy will grow by 30-50% over the next two decades – and more than double by the time you‟re my age. Simply put, America and the rest of the world will need all the energy that markets can deliver.

Reality 2: There are no near-term alternatives to oil, natural gas, and coal. Like it or not, the world runs on fossil fuels, and it will for decades to come. The U.S. government‟s own forecast shows that fossil fuels will supply about 85% of world energy demand in 2030 – roughly the same as today. Yes, someday the world may run on alternatives. But that day is still a long way off. It‟s not about will. It‟s not about who‟s in the White House. It‟s about thermodynamics and economics.
Now, I was told back in the 1970s what you‟re being told today: that wind and solar power are „alternatives‟ to fossil fuels. A more honest description would be „supplements‟. Taken together, wind and solar power today account for just one-sixth of 1% of America‟s annual energy usage. Let me repeat that statistic – one-sixth of 1%.

Here‟s a pie chart showing total U.S. primary energy demand today. I “asked” PowerPoint to show a wedge for the portion of the U.S. energy pie that comes from wind and solar. But PowerPoint won‟t make a wedge for wind and solar – just a thin line.

Over the past 30 years our government has pumped roughly $20 billion in subsidies into wind and solar power, and all we‟ve got to show for it is this thin line!

Undaunted by this, President Obama proposes to double wind and solar power consumption in this country by the end of his first term. Great – that means the line on this pie chart would become a slightly thicker line in four years. I would point out that wind and solar power doubled in just the last three years of the Bush administration. Granted, W. started from a smaller baseline, so doubling again over the next four years will be a taller order. But if President Obama‟s goal is achieved, wind and solar together will grow from one-sixth of 1% to one-third of 1% of total primary energy use – and that assumes U.S. energy consumption remains flat, which of course it will not.

The problems with wind and solar power become apparent when you look at their footprint. To generate electricity comparable to a 1,000 MW gas-fired power plant you‟d have to build a wind farm with at least 500 very tall windmills occupying more than 30,000 acres of land. Then there‟s solar power. I‟m holding a Denver Post article that tells the story of an 8.2 MW solar-power plant built on 82 acres in Colorado. The Post proudly hails it “America‟s most productive utility-scale solar electricity plant”. But when you account for the fact that the sun doesn‟t always shine, you‟d need over 250 of these plants, on over 20,000 acres to replace just one 1,000 MW gas-fired power plant that can be built on less than 40 acres.

The Salt Lake Tribune recently celebrated the startup of a 14 MW geothermal plant near Beaver, Utah. That‟s wonderful! But the Tribune failed to put 14 MW into perspective. Utah has over 7,000 MW of installed generating capacity, primarily coal. America has about 1,000,000 MW of installed capacity. Because U.S. demand for electricity has been growing at 1-2 % per year, on average we‟ve been adding 10-20,000 MW of new capacity every year to keep pace with growth. Around the world coal demand is booming – 200,000 MW of new coal capacity is under construction, over 30,000 MW in China alone. In fact, there are 30 coal plants under construction in the U.S. today that when complete will burn about 70 million tons of coal per year.

Why has my generation failed to develop wind and solar? Because our energy choices are ruthlessly ruled, not by political judgments, but by the immutable laws of thermodynamics. In engineer-speak, turning diffused sources of energy such as photons in sunlight or the kinetic energy in wind requires massive investment to concentrate that energy into a form that‟s usable on any meaningful scale.
What‟s more, the wind doesn‟t always blow and the sun doesn‟t always shine. Unless or until there‟s a major breakthrough in high-density electricity storage – a problem that has confounded scientists for more than 100 years – wind and solar can never be relied upon to provide base load power.

But it‟s not just thermodynamics. It‟s economics. Over the past 150 years America has invested trillions of dollars in our existing energy systems – power plants, the grid, steam and gas turbines, railroads, pipelines, distribution, refineries, service stations, home heating, boilers, cars, trucks and planes, etc. Changing that infrastructure to a system based on renewable energy will take decades and massive new investment.

To be clear, we need all the wind and solar power the markets can deliver at prices we can afford. But please, let‟s get real – wind and solar are not “alternatives” to fossil fuels.


Reality 3:
You can argue about whether global warming is a serious problem or not, but there‟s no argument about the consequences of cap and trade regulation – it‟s going to drive the cost of energy painfully higher. That‟s the whole point of cap and trade – to drive up the cost of fossil energy so that otherwise uneconomic “alternatives” can compete. Some put the total cost of cap and trade to U.S. consumers at $2 trillion over the next decade and $6 trillion between now and 2050 – not to mention the net loss of jobs in energy-intensive industries that must compete in global markets.

Given this staggering cost, I hope you‟ll ask: will cap and trade work? If Europe‟s experience with cap and trade is an indication, the answer is “no”.
With much fanfare, the European Union (EU) adopted a cap and trade scheme in an effort to meet their Kyoto commitments to cut CO2 emissions to below 1990 levels by 2012. How are they doing? So far, all but one EU country is getting an “F”. Since 2000 Europe‟s CO2 emissions per unit of GDP have grown faster than the U.S.! The U.S. of course did not implement Kyoto – nor did over 150 other countries. There‟s a good reason why most of the world rejected Kyoto: with today‟s energy technologies there‟s no way to sever the link between CO2 emissions and modern life. Europe‟s cap and trade scheme was designed to fail – and it‟s working as designed.

Let‟s do the math to explain why Kyoto would have failed in the U.S. and why Obama‟s cap and trade scheme is also likely to fail. Americans were responsible for about 5 billion metric tons of CO2 emissions in 1990. By 2005 that amount had risen to over 5.8 billion tons. If the U.S. Senate had ratified the Kyoto treaty back in the 1990s America would‟ve promised to cut manmade CO2 emissions in this country to 7% below that 1990 level – to about 4.6 billion tons, a 1.2 billion ton per year cut by 2012.

What would it take to cut U.S. CO2 emissions by 1.2 billion tons per year by 2012? A lot more sacrifice than riding a Schwinn to work or school, or changing light bulbs.

We could‟ve banned gasoline. In 2005 gasoline use in America caused about 1.1B tons of CO2. That would almost get us there. Or, we could shut down over half of the coal-fired power plants in this country. Coal plants generated about 2 B tons of CO2 in 2005. Of course, before we did that we‟d have to get over 60 million Americans and a bunch of American businesses to volunteer to go without electricity.

This simple math is not friendly to those who demand that government mandate sharp cuts in manmade CO2 emissions – now.

Reality 4: Even if America does cut CO2 emissions, those same computer models that predict man-made warming over the next century also predict that Kyoto-type CO2 cuts would have no discernible impact on global temperatures for decades, if ever. When was the last time you read that in the paper? We‟ve been told that Kyoto was “just a first step.” Your generation may want to ask: “what‟s the second step?”

That begs another question: “how much are Americans willing to pay for „a first step‟ that has no discernible effect on global climate?” The answer here in Utah is: not much, according to a poll conducted by Dan Jones & Associates published in the Deseret News. 63% of those surveyed said they worry about global warming. But when asked how much they‟d be willing to see their electricity bills go up to help cut CO2 emissions, only half were willing to pay more for electricity. Only 18% were willing to see their power bill go up by 10% or more. Only 3% were willing to see their power bill go up by 20%.

Here‟s the rub: many Europeans today pay up to 20% more for electricity as a result of their failed efforts to sever the link between modern life and CO2 emissions.

So, if Americans aren‟t willing to pay a lot more for their energy, how do we reduce CO2 emissions? Well, here are several things we should do.
First, we should improve energy efficiency. Second, we should stop wasting energy. Third, we should conserve energy. Fourth, we should rethink our overblown fear of nuclear power. Fifth, if we let markets work, markets on their own will continue to substitute low-carbon natural gas for coal and oil.
Indeed, 2008 will be remembered in the energy industry as the year U.S. natural gas producers changed the game for domestic energy policy. Smart people in my industry have „cracked the code‟ – they‟ve figured out how to produce stunning amounts of natural gas from shale formations right here in the U.S. As a result, we now know that America and the world are “swimming” in natural gas.

U.S. onshore natural gas production has grown rapidly over the past three years – a feat that most energy experts thought impossible a few years ago. America‟s known natural gas resource base now exceeds 100 years of supply at current U.S. consumption – and that number is growing. Abundant supply means that natural gas prices over the next decade and beyond will likely be much lower than over the past five years. While prices may spike from time to time in response to sudden, unexpected changes in supply or demand – for example, hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico or extreme cold or hot weather – these spikes will be temporary.

Indeed, the price of natural gas today is less than $24 per barrel equivalent – a bargain, even without taking into account lower CO2 emissions.
Greater use of natural gas produced in America – by American companies who hire American workers and pay American taxes – will help reduce oil imports. Unlike oil, 98% of America‟s natural gas supply comes from North America.
And get this: we don‟t need massive investment in new power plants to use more natural gas for electric generation. I mentioned earlier that America has about one million MW of installed electric generation capacity. Forty percent of that capacity runs on natural gas – about 400,000 MW, compared to just 312,000 MW of coal capacity.

But unlike those coal plants, which run at an average load factor of about 75%, America‟s existing natural gas-fired power plants operate with an average load factor of less than 25%. Turns out that the market has found a way to cut CO2 emissions without driving the price of electricity through the roof – natural gas‟s share of the electricity market is growing, and it will continue to grow – with or without cap and trade.
Sixth, your generation needs to focus on new technology and not just assume it, as many in my generation did back in the 70s – and as many in Congress continue to do today. Just one example: there‟s no such thing as “clean” coal, though I should quickly add that given America and the world‟s dependence on coal for electric generation, we do need to fund R&D aimed at capturing and storing CO2 from coal plants.

To be sure, CO2 capture and sequestration (underground storage) will be hugely expensive and it‟ll take decades to implement on any meaningful scale. The high costs will be passed through in electricity rates to consumers. To transport massive amounts of CO2 captured at coal plants we‟ll have to build a massive pipeline grid that some estimate could be comparable to our existing natural gas pipeline grid. Then we‟ll have to drill thousands of wells to store CO2 in the ground. The facilities required to inject CO2 into the earth will use huge amounts of energy – which ironically will come from fossil fuels, negating some of the carbon-reduction benefits. And where are we going to put all this CO2? Questar owns and operates underground natural gas storage facilities. Gas storage is in high demand – we‟re always looking for suitable underground formations. But I can tell you that there aren‟t many.

Seventh (for anyone who‟s still counting!) it‟s time to have an honest conversation about alternative responses to global warming than what will likely be a futile attempt to eliminate the use of fossil fuels. What about adapting to warming? In truth, while many scientists believe man‟s use of fossil fuels is at least partly responsible for global warming, many also believe the amount of warming will be modest and the planet will easily adapt. Just about everyone agrees that a modest amount of warming won‟t harm the planet. In fact, highly respected scientists such as Harvard astrophysicist Willie Soon believe that added CO2 in the atmosphere may actually benefit mankind because more CO2 helps plants grow. When was the last time you read that in the paper?

You‟ve no doubt heard the argument that even if global warming turns out not to be as bad as some are saying, we should still cut CO2 emissions – as an insurance policy – the so-called precautionary principle. While appealing in its simplicity, there are three major problems with the precautionary principle.
First, none of us live our lives according to the precautionary principle. Let me give you an example. Around the world about 1.2 million people die each year in car accidents – about 3,200 deaths a day. At that pace, 120 million people will die this century in a car wreck somewhere in the world. We could save 120 million lives by imposing a 5 MPH speed limit worldwide. Show of hands: how many would be willing to live with a 5 MPH speed limit to save 120 million lives? Most of us won‟t – we accept trade-offs. We implicitly do a cost-benefit analysis and conclude that we‟re not going to do without our cars, even if doing so would save 120 million lives. So before we start down this expensive and likely futile cap and trade path, don‟t you think we should insist on an honest analysis of alternative responses to global warming?

Second, the media dwells on the potential harm from global warming, but ignores the fact that the costs borne to address it will also do harm. We have a finite amount of wealth in the world. We have a long list of problems – hunger, poverty, malaria, nuclear proliferation, HIV, just to name a few. Your generation should ask: how can we do the most good with our limited wealth? The opportunity cost of diverting a large part of current wealth to solve a potential problem 50-100 years from now means we do “less good” dealing with our current problems.
Third, economists will tell you that the consequence of a cap and trade tax on energy will be slower economic growth. Slower growth, compounded over decades, means that we leave future generations with less wealth to deal with the consequences of global warming, whatever they may be.

In truth, humans are remarkably adaptive. People live north of the Arctic Circle where temperatures are below zero most of the year. Roughly one-third of mankind today lives in tropical climates where temperatures routinely exceed 100 degrees. In fact, you can take every one of the theoretical problems caused by global warming and identify lower-cost ways to deal with that problem than rationing energy use. For example, if arctic ice melts and causes the sea level to rise, a wealthier world will adapt over time by moving away from the beach or building retaining walls to protect beachfront property. Fine, you say. But how do we save the polar bear? I‟d first point out that polar bears have survived sometimes dramatic climate changes over thousands of years, most recently the so called “medieval warm period” (1000-1300 A.D.) in which large parts of the arctic glaciers disappeared and Greenland was truly “green”. Contrary to that heart-wrenching image on the cover of Time of an apparently doomed polar bear floating on a chunk of ice, polar bears can swim for miles. In addition, more polar bears die each year from gunshot wounds than from drowning. So instead of rationing carbon energy, maybe the first thing we should do to protect polar bears is to stop shooting them!

Let me close by returning to the lessons my generation learned from the 1970s energy crisis. We learned that energy choices favored by politicians but not confirmed by markets are destined to fail. If history has taught us anything it‟s that we should resist the temptation to ask politicians to substitute their judgments for that of the market, and let markets determine how much energy gets used, what types of energy get used, where, how and by whom energy gets used. In truth, no source of energy is perfect, thus only markets can weigh the pros and cons of each source. Government‟s role is to set reasonable standards for environmental performance, and make sure markets work.

I‟ve covered a lot of ground this morning. I hope I‟ve challenged your thinking about your energy future. Mostly, I hope you continue to enjoy freedom, prosperity – and abundant supplies of energy at prices you can afford! Thank you for your attention, and now I‟ll be glad to take rebuttal!”

Gas prices, oil refineries, global warming, polar bears, environmental wackos, economy

Always follow the money.

We all want a clean environment. Most of us want a healthy economy, jobs and gasoline to get to our jobs. There are some, mostly environmental wackos, that typically don’t have to work for a living. They get government money, non profit money, live with mommy & daddy or just generally bum off of people. They don’t care how high gas price go, or if you can even get it. They don’t have to work for a living.

So, wondering why gas prices are going up? Number 1 reason. Lack of refining capacity. This already existing problem was exacerbated by Hurricane Katrina. Refining capacity was reduced approximately 20 % or more. We are still trying to recover from that. Secondly, we are not using our reserves. Alaska has a huge amount of oil.

So, what is hampering our oil production. Environmental wackos. Let’s take Alaska for example. Of course, they always bring up environmental impact. But they also bring up animals like polar bears and whales. They use pseudo science of global warming and terms like may and could cause. They consistently use false data and science. I hear talk of polar bears becoming extinct almost every day when in fact their numbers have increased. Alleged receding ice will fundamentally have no impact on their numbers. 

So, when you fill up with gas, remember who is causing the problem, who only cares about fictitious polar bear issues and could care less about you.

For more information, visit these links:

http://www.theminorityreportblog.com/story/steven_foley/2008/02/02/alaska_oil_drilling_polar_bears_and_idiot_environmentalists

http://www.csmonitor.com/2005/0921/p11s02-usec.html

http://www.reason.org/commentaries/moore_20050901.shtml

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,152922,00.html

http://www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/steo/pub/contents.html

John Coleman, Weather Channel Founder, Sue Al Gore, Carbon Credits, Fox News, Rush Limbaugh

John Coleman, founder of the Weather Channel, thinks Al Gore should be sued for misrepresenting the impact of carbon dioxide, CO2, and selling carbon credits. Here is an exerpt from Fox News about his recent statement:

“Not Fair and Balanced?

Weather Channel founder John Coleman is calling global warming a fraud and says the station he founded needs to stop telling people what to think about climate change. The Business and Media Institute reports Coleman was a speaker at the Heartland Institute’s Climate Change Conference in New York. Coleman was referencing what some call the Weather Channel’s global warming alarmism.

One of its meteorologists suggested two years ago that weathercasters who have doubts about global warming should lose their certification. Coleman advocates suing people who sell carbon credits — including Al Gore — because the attention in the courts could, in his words, “put some light on the fraud of global warming.”

The two-day conference is actually getting quite a bit of media coverage — with stories in the Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, New York Sun and many others.”

Click here to view the Fox news article:

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,335030,00.html

The trancript of John Coleman’s conversation is listed on Rush Limabaugh’s website. Rush members can listen to it. Here are John Coleman’s remarks:

 “BEGIN TRANSCRIPT
 
 
RUSH: John Coleman, who founded the Weather Channel, wants to sue Algore on this whole business of global warming being a hoax.  I have loved John Coleman ever since he used to be the weatherman at Good Morning America. He was on Fox & Friends today, and Steve Doocy said, “Why should Algore be sued?”

COLEMAN:  The whole backbone of the global warming “science” is what they called CO2 forcing.  This is carbon dioxide, and they say that this little trace compound in the atmosphere — 38 molecules of carbon dioxide out of a hundred thousand molecules in our atmosphere, they say this little trace element — puts the carbon in the air that forces the water vapor to create this uncontrollable global warming. It’s gonna bring this climatic catastrophe.

DOOCY: Right. Right.

COLEMAN: All right, that’s what they’re finding.  Now, I don’t believe that’s the way it works at all.

DOOCY: Mmm-hmm. Mmm-hmm.

COLEMAN: I see absolutely no evidence that CO2, carbon dioxide, is causing any warm-up in temperatures.  I don’t think it’s happening. I’m asking the question:  If Al Gore knows that CO2 forcing is invalid — isn’t really happening — and he goes ahead and sells these carbon credits for millions of dollars, is he committing financial fraud?  That is the question.

RUSH:  Doocy says, “Well, John, there’s no disputing the temperature on the planet’s gone up by one degree.” Steve, it’s come down a degree! The whole century gain was wiped out before recent temperature readings, and here’s what Coleman said.

COLEMAN:  I dispute that.

DOOCY:  You do dispute that!

COLEMAN:  I think the whole statistics are somewhat questionable.  Where are they measuring this temperature?  Who’s measuring it?  How are they handling the data? 

DOOCY:  The whole global warming thing is just a hyped scam?

COLEMAN:  Maybe over the last hundred years the temperature on planet Earth went up by close to a degree or so. 

DOOCY: Mmm-hmm?

COLEMAN: That’s not a big deal.  In the last 12 months, the climate on earth has gone down by a full degree.  This has been the coldest winter in modern history globally.

DOOCY: Sure.

RUSH:  Amen.  John Coleman.  I love that guy.
 
 
 
 
END TRANSCRIPT “

Listen to Rush or go to Rush Limbaugh’s site to learn more:

http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/home/daily/site_030508/content/01125115.guest.html
 
 

Climate Science: Roger Pielke Sr. Research Group News, Global Warming

R.A. Pielke Sr. has relaunched a climate science blog. Here is the announcement from the site:

“As a result of very positive encouragement from many Climate Science readers, I have decided to relaunch the website. The format will be different than in the past, however, in that comments will not be permitted. The posting of information will not be on a schedule, but when new information on a climate science issue is available that is otherwise not very visible, or has been misrepresented in the media.

The presentation of climate science in the media, unfortunately, remains biased, as has been documented numerous times on Climate Science. Thus, I have decided to reenter this mechanism of providing information. While comments will not be permitted on the website, guest presentations will be invited when there is value in providing this source of information.

Climate Science will thus provide a source of information on climate that, hopefully, will be useful to others, as part of a much needed effort to provide a balanced view of climate science.

Thanks to those who have found my website of value and take the time to read it!”

Below are the main conclusions of Roger Pielke SR.:

The Climate Science Weblog has clearly documented the following
conclusions since July 2005:
  1. The needed focus for the study of climate change and variability is on the regional and local scales. Global and zonally-averaged climate metrics would only be important to the extent that they provide useful information on these space scales.
  2. Global and zonally-averaged surface temperature trend assessments, besides having major difficulties in terms of how this metric is diagnosed and analyzed, do not provide significant information on climate change and variability on the regional and local scales.
  3. Global warming is not equivalent to climate change. Significant, societally important climate change, due to both natural- and human- climate forcings, can occur without any global warming or cooling.
  4. The spatial pattern of ocean heat content change is the appropriate metric to assess climate system heat changes including global warming.
  5. In terms of climate change and variability on the regional and local scale, the IPCC Reports, the CCSP Report on surface and tropospheric temperature trends, and the U.S. National Assessment have overstated the role of the radiative effect of the anthropogenic increase of CO2 relative to the role of the diversity of other human climate climate forcing on global warming, and more generally, on climate variability and change.
  6. Global and regional climate models have not demonstrated skill at predicting regional and local climate change and variability on multi-decadal time scales.
  7. Attempts to significantly influence regional and local-scale climate based on controlling CO2 emissions alone is an inadequate policy for this purpose.
  8. A vulnerability paradigm, focused on regional and local societal and environmental resources of importance, is a more inclusive, useful, and scientifically robust framework to interact with policymakers, than is the focus on global multi-decadal climate predictions which are downscaled to the regional and local scales. The vulnerability paradigm permits the evaluation of the entire spectrum of risks associated with different social and environmental threats, including climate variability and change.

Humans are significantly altering the global climate, but in a variety of diverse ways beyond the radiative effect of carbon dioxide. The IPCC assessments have been too conservative in recognizing the importance of these human climate forcings as they alter regional and global climate. These assessments have also not communicated the inability of the models to accurately forecast the spread of possibilities of future climate. The forecasts, therefore, do not provide any skill in quantifying the impact of different mitigation strategies on the actual climate response
that would occur.”

Visit the weblog at:

http://climatesci.org/

<!– –>

Rush Limbaugh, global warming, Al Gore, climate stations, global warming myths

If you only listen to Rush Limbaugh for one topic, global warming, it is well worth your time. Rush Limbaugh is one of a few credible sources of information on factual data concerning alleged global warming. As Rush says, follow the money. Just a few years ago the so called experts were warning of global cooling and everyday we are bombarded with more misinformation and exagerations. The temperature change increase seems to change daily depending on which expert or politician is speaking. It is the policy of fear mongering and using political platforms to save the helpless populace.

Listen to the Rush Limbaugh show as often as you can and of course go to his website and check out the links on the global warming myth. Here is an example of a recent link on Rush’s site:

“Del. global warming skeptic stands pat

State climatologist on opposite side of governor in court case

Enter Legates, a Ph.D. climatologist who received the title of state climatologist in 2005 from Daniel Leathers, now the head of the University of Delaware’s geography department.

Legates joined a group of scientists late last year in urging the court to reject the state claims, in a brief filed by the conservative Competitive Enterprise Institute.

“It is simply impossible to conclude that the net effect of greenhouse gases endangers human health and welfare,” the brief said.”

Read the rest of this story here:

http://www.delawareonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070201/NEWS/702010363/1006/NEWS

For more great information and links like the one above, visit Rush Limbaugh’s website at:

http://RushLimbaugh.com

Another great source for information on the global warming myth is a blog I discovered. Rush, if you have not seen this blog, you must visit it. Attention Rush Limbaugh and truth seekers everywhere.

Visit:

http://wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com

The blog is owned by Anthony Watts and in his own words he is “a former television meteorologist who operates a weather technology and content business, as well as continues daily forecasting on radio, just for fun.” Go to his blog and search on global warming. His articles are based on solid facts and he exposes much of the quasi science such as that used in the climate station temperature monitoring.

Here sre some of his recent posts:

http://wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com/2008/02/14/how-not-to-measure-temperature-part-51/

http://wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com/2008/02/13/global-warming-killed-nessie/

http://wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com/2008/02/08/increasing-tornadoes-or-better-information-gathering/

I always recommend that people search for the truth and facts. Don’t believe everything you read or here, such as from Al Gore. Just for fun, about a year ago I checked on the average temperatures in Antartica. Check this out for yourself. Check out the average summer temperature in Antartica. Keep your eye on the truth.