Posts Tagged ‘Cap and trade’
After a recent surge sent the price of gasoline in California to a new record Saturday, sticker shock at the pumps intensified Sunday in the Golden State.
The average price for a gallon of regular fuel rose 4.1 cents to just over $4.65, according to AAA’s Daily Fuel Gauge price-tracking report. The average price in California at the beginning of this month was about $4.17, which was already 34 cents higher than a year earlier. The national average is about $3.80.
California tends to have high gas prices compared with many markets around the U.S., but the margin has grown especially wide of late because of a number of factors including the shutdown of a refinery in Torrance resulting from a power outage.
Other refinery and pipeline problems have also hurt the supply of gasoline, and to top it off, stations are preparing for the annual change to winter-blend fuel, which also can be disruptive.
Gas prices yesterday reached a new record, surpassing the old high set during the 2008 fuel crisis.
But just wait – the Greenies Cap and Trade is about to begin.
This is an article in the Wall Street Journal explains what happens when the Greenies Cap and Trade starts.
California’s Green Gas Shortages
Prices are spiking thanks to state mandates that will only get worse.
Californians are grumbling about a gas price spike, which state officials blame on disruptions in the supply chain. Actually, they’re paying through the nozzle for their greener-than-thou government.
Gas prices in California have soared by 55 cents in a week to an historic high of $4.65 per gallon, about 84 cents higher than the national average. The immediate cause was a power outage at an Exxon refinery in Torrance. A Chevron refinery in Richmond that caught fire in August has also been operating at reduced capacity. The resulting fuel shortage has forced wholesalers to ration deliveries, and retailers that buy on the spot market to close.
This gas crisis is self-inflicted, like so many problems in the state. Because California’s fuel regulations are the most stringent in the country, the state is isolated from other energy markets. Few refineries in the world can produce the unique reformulated gasoline blend that the state requires, and almost all are located in California.
Over the last two decades four refineries in the state have shut down rather than invest in expensive upgrades to comply with fuel regulations. The biggest killer was a 2002 ban on the additive MTBE, which refiners had to replace with ethanol. The California Air Resources Board has estimated that this reformulated blend adds five to 15 cents to the cost of every gallon of gas, but Californians pay a premium whenever a refinery shuts down.
The 14 refineries in California that blend its special fuel operate at nearly full capacity. So when a refinery experiences an unexpected outage or even routine maintenance, others can’t pick up the slack. And since importing the fuel via tanker can take up to six weeks, Californians are usually stuck paying higher prices until the refinery comes back on line.
Exxon’s Torrance refinery came back on line on Friday, and on Sunday Governor Jerry Brown told regulators to let refiners produce winter-blend gasoline early this year. But even “normal” gas prices in California are about 30 cents higher than the national average thanks to its fuel standards and a 50.5-cent gas tax that is second only to New York’s 51.3-cents.
Any relief Californians feel will be short-lived. The state’s cap-and-trade program, which charges businesses for emitting carbon, will take effect this November. Oil companies warn they’ll pass on the costs to consumers. Meanwhile, a low-carbon fuel standard kicks into high gear in 2015. That’s when regulators expect the new generation of biofuels like cellulosic ethanol to be plentiful, though such fuels aren’t now commercially viable.
A Boston Consulting Group study warns that the limited availability of biofuels that could shimmy under the carbon limbo stick could force five to seven more refineries to close. Midwest corn ethanol wouldn’t qualify. If all of California’s 2006 global warming law were implemented, the study estimates the cost of gas would increase by up to $2.70 per gallon. By the way, Californians are already paying up to 50% more for their electricity than the rest of the country thanks to their renewable-energy portfolio standard.
The cost of such environmental regulations, which is baked into everything Californians consume, is one more reason that jobs are leaking to other states. In related news, Environmental Protection Agency chief Lisa Jackson says California is her model for the nation.
by Adam Sparks
Thanks to Ronald Reagan’s legacy and a legal miscalculation by leftist environmentalists, this week a California judge stopped the implementation of California’s Cap and Trade law: better known as Cap and Tax. This is the same type of carbon trading that Al Gore has hawked for years, but failed to get through the most radical Democrat Congress in generations. That’s how bad it was. Of course, that didn’t stop whacked out California from passing a Draconian version of the same job killing scheme.
To add insult to injury, the so called “republican” Governor Schwarzenegger signed the bill into law in 2006. It was opposed by the Chamber of Commerce and most sane taxpayers (admittedly, CA doesn’t have enough of those). The opponents claimed that the law would drive out business to other states and dramatically increase the cost of energy. Energy costs would, of course, be passed on, driving up the cost of everything else-in the midst of the nation’s worst recession.
The voters of California even had an opportunity last year to put the brakes on it at the ballot box with Proposition 23, but the environmental left spent millions fighting the proposition. It wouldn’t even have scrapped the whole law, but only would have suspended the Cap and Tax until state unemployment dropped below 5.5% for four consecutive quarters. The proposition was defeated overwhelmingly. Considering our unemployment rate is well over 12% here, the California voters essentially supported assisted economic-suicide of their own state.
It took two forces working together to finally defeat Cap and Tax: a group of radical Lefties and Ronald Reagan to put the brakes on this law.
A challenge to the law, based on other environmental laws, specifically CEQA, (the California Environmental Quality Act), finally prompted a judge to halt the law’s implementation. CEQA says that legislation that has an impact on the economy or the environment has to be analyzed for less destructive alternatives. Such an analysis was not adequately done according to the judge. CEQA was signed by then Governor Ronald Reagan. (May he rest in peace.)
Ironically, the group that brought the legal challenge to the law was not the coalition of businesses that would be directly affected. It was a group of racist, enviro-whackos calling themselves, the Center on Race, Poverty and the Environment, abbreviated CRAP. This group claims to defend minorities from the ravages of the environment. The reason that CRAP filed the lawsuit is that they thought the legislation was too business friendly!
The judges ruling is now an opening for the business community to permanently defeat this law. The California Air Resources Board, one of the state’s largest and most unaccountable agencies has to now study and find alternative solutions to reducing green house gases.
Here’s an idea for the Resources Board: how about if California just continue on with its other destructive economic policies? Policies like: spending taxes it doesn’t have, treasury-busting unfunded pensions, high corporate and individual taxes, promoting the trial lawyer paradise and all the other anti-business regulations? Then you’ll be on track for carbon emissions like you’ve had before the industrial revolution-without the need for the complex Cap and Tax
New Mexico, the only state besides California to move forward on comprehensive global warming regulations, is reversing course under a new Republican governor, Susana Martinez. The move threatens to cripple the Western Climate Initiative, a California-driven effort to enact a regional trading program to curb greenhouse gas emissions.
Martinez, who replaced Democrat Bill Richardson, announced on Tuesday that she is removing all members of New Mexico’s Environmental Improvement Board because of what she said was its “anti-business” policies. After a heated debate, the board last year approved measures to limit the emissions of the state’s largest polluters and to join the regional cap-and-trade program.
Supporters argue that the board, whose members were appointed by Richardson, went through an exhaustive public process before approving the regulations, but Martinez’s office contends the board moved forward with the regulations after state lawmakers rejected similar efforts during the legislative process.
Martinez said in a statement that New Mexico has been hurt by policies that discourage economic development and result in businesses fleeing the state. “Unfortunately, the majority of EIB members have made it clear that they are more interested in advancing political ideology than implementing common-sense policies that balance economic growth with responsible stewardship in New Mexico,” Martinez said.
With global warming legislation stymied in Congress by coal and oil interests, environmentalists have looked to the states for measures to address the growing levels of carbon dioxide emissions that are trapping heat in Earth’s atmosphere and causing changes in the climate. California, New Mexico and other Western states have begun to suffer longer droughts, rapidly melting snowpacks and other effects that scientists attribute to human-induced global warming.
Northeastern states have imposed a cap-and-trade program to curb greenhouse gas emissions of power plants. Under California’s 2006 global warming legislation, the state’s air resources board last month enacted cap-and-trade rules covering a broad range of industries, including cement, oil and electric power. New Mexico was expected to be the next state to follow suit.
The Western Climate Initiative, originally envisioned as covering seven U.S. states and four Canadian provinces, would be a hedge against businesses moving to other states to avoid emissions regulations.
Martinez’s letter to the New Mexico board members, who serve at the governor’s pleasure, said their removal was effective immediately. If any members wish to reapply, Martinez said she would consider their qualifications on a case-by-case basis.
Cap-and-trade critics had alleged during the board’s hearings last year on the emissions proposals that some board members had a conflict of interest and were too closely aligned with environment interests. Board members and the state attorney general dismissed those claims.
Gay Dillingham, the board’s chairwoman, told the Associated Press she hopes Martinez’s administration takes the time to understand the emissions program. She noted that the board reviewed 200 hours of technical testimony, public comments and complex documents before reaching a decision. “So as a citizen, I would expect the same dedication be given to reviewing all the evidence before she commits to overturning or supporting it,” Dillingham said. “History has shown us there is a dynamic relationship between regulatory obligation and private-sector innovation, and we need enough time to give this process a chance to work for New Mexico.”
The fate of the emissions rules remains uncertain. Martinez issued an executive order Saturday halting all pending regulations by executive branch agencies under her control to determine whether they hurt businesses in New Mexico. She also directed agencies to review rules now in place and determine by the end of the month which ones should be scrapped to improve economic development and job growth.
Even if Martinez’s administration overturns the rules, another public process — including a hearing and an opportunity for the public to comment — would be necessary.
President Obama at the recent Climate Change Summit, said, “…we risk consigning future generations to an irreversible catastrophe. The security and stability of each nation and all peoples—our prosperity, our health, and our safety—are in jeopardy and the time we have to reverse this tide is running out.”
Note particularly “irreversible catastrophe,” “ our prosperity, our health, and our safety… in jeopardy ,” and “time… is running out.”
The current godfather of liberalism, George Soros recently said “…then work on a better world order where we work together to resolve problems that confront humanity like global warming. And I think that dealing with global warming will require a lot of investment. …the American consumer who has been spending more than he has been saving, all right? Than he’s been producing. So that motor is now switched off. It’s finished. It’s run out of — can’t continue. You need a new motor. And we have a big problem. Global warming. It requires big investment. And that could be the motor of the world economy in the years to come.”
Note particularly “world order,” “global warming,,, could be the motor of the world economy,” and the fact that he blames American Consumers for breaking the system.
It should be obvious that the left-wing purveyors of global warming are talking as much about spending the money of Americans and citizens of other developed countries as they are fear mongering to the masses.
The real purpose of global warming is nothing more than a grab for the resources, freedoms, and prosperity of the world, so the rich liberal elite and their puppet politicians can establish a world order. This is the same dream held so dear by Stalin, Lenin, Mao, and even Hitler – to gain complete control so their “ideal society” can succeed.
Global warming is fake science, a fraud, a tool to destroy freedom and elevate the elite. Science has been corrupted by the investment of money by environmental fanatics and liberal governments. The very concept that activities of man are able to disrupt the mega-weather cycles is clearly absurd, there is insufficient data to be able to draw any true scientific conclusions.
A big problem with predictions that the carbon dioxide released by industrialized man is driving the earth to disastrous heating is simply that there cannot be any meaningful data to validate or dispute this. Scientific research proves that, 1) the earth has warmed and cooled without the presence of man for hundreds of thousands of years, and 2) the cycle between ice age and warm earth takes tens of thousands of years. If all the climate data accumulated in the last one hundred years is used, it still has statistical insignificance; it would amount about 1/1000th of a percent of the natural cycle time– not enough to make any reasonable conclusion.
Analysis of ocean floor core drilling shows that during the last 400,000 years the earth has experienced five ice ages; these are cyclic in nature with each cycle having a duration of about 80,000 years. During each of these cycles, starting at the warmest point it takes around 60,000 years to reach the coldest point with temperatures decreasing, often interrupted by multiple periods of increasing temperatures, but always trending cooler. Once the full ice age is reached, temperatures begin a much more rapid decrease reaching the highest average temperature in about 20,000 years. So during the warming cycle the change is three times faster than that of the cooling cycle.
Archeologists have concluded that humans have only inhabited the earth for about 200,000 years. That means that Homo-sapiens have survived through about 2-1/2 ice age/warm age cycles. Man appeared on the earth during the time of high warmth as the earth was first entering into a new cooling cycle. Pryor to man there had been at least four ice ages and probably many more since there is no reason to assume that this normal cooling/heating cycle has not existed almost as long as the earth itself.
Looking at the cooling/heating trends of the last six partial and full ice ages, it appears that there is a very slight trend towards warming, with three out of four most recent ice ages both taking longer to reach the coldest peak and with the peak being slightly warmer than previous ice ages. So this very slow warming trend existed before man was even on the earth.
There is no question that there will be continued cycles of cooling and heating. We actually appear to be entering into a cooling cycle, but if so science will not know it for probably 10,000 years, and Soros, Obama, Gore, and you and I will probably be lost from human memory.
People must resist the scare tactics; stand to protect their God-given rights, and insist that they will determine their own direction, choosing for themselves how their money will be used. The basic premise of liberalism, socialism, and communism is that people are neither smart enough nor good enough to do the right thing, only an all powerful government can do that.
We must stop this environmental scam, end the confidence game that would take the money of the worker, the grower, the investor, the industrialist and “redistribute” it to those who have not done the work, have not raised the crops and herds, and have not taken the risks to develop prosperity.
This does not mean that we will not help the poor and downtrodden, it only means that in helping them we will transfer the skills for them to prosper in their own right, and not kill the economic system that has been the most successful the world has known.
The 111th Congress is officially over, and according to Gallup, it’s also officially the worst Congress in the history of polling. Yet despite its 13% approval rating there are those who are hailing the 111th Congress for its myriad legislative “accomplishments.” Not surprisingly, many of those touting those “accomplishments” are the very members of Congress who voted for the legislation in the first place. Starting at the top with Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), you find a woman who is not at all ashamed of the legislation she has passed, despite the disastrous poll numbers. Pelosi says she is “very, very proud of the work that was accomplished by this Congress.”
The American people, though, think differently, and they have already issued their verdict on the 111th Congress by way of an earthshaking election in November. If you take a look at some of Congress’ big-ticket “accomplishments,” you might understand where they’re coming from. Here’s a look at 10 major pieces of legislation coming out of Congress the last two years and why Americans might not be so pleased:
Obamacare: Billed as the panacea for America’s health care woes, The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, better known as “Obamacare,” is a 2,700-page behemoth that “portends a massive transfer of power, dollars and decision making to the federal government,” says Heritage’s Nina Owcharenko. Heritage also finds that under the law, workers and families will face increased costs, seniors will lose access to care, and American taxpayers will take the hit for a trillion dollars in new federal spending. (3/2010)
The Failed Stimulus (a.k.a., the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act): President Obama promised that his stimulus would save or create 3.5 million jobs by the end of 2010. The result? America saw a bunch of orange and green “ARRA” signs sprout up like dandelions all over America, touting the slogan “Putting America to Work,” but here we are in December 2010 with a 9.8 percent unemployment rate, a national debt of $2.9 trillion, and 7.3 million jobs shy of President Obama’s promise. Some stimulus! (2/2009)
The 9,000-Earmark Omnibus Bill: Never mind the $1.4 trillion budget deficit facing America in 2009. Congress went ahead and passed an omnibus spending bill containing 9,287 pork project earmarks costing $13 billion. Included in the earmarks were a $200,000 tattoo removal program in Mission Hills, Calif., and more than a million dollars to combat Mormon Crickets in Utah. (3/2009)
Mountains of Debt: You can’t pin it on one piece of legislation alone, but the 111th Congress has piled heaps upon heaps of new debt — a massive $3.22 trillion. That comes out to $10,429.64 for every man, woman and child counted in the 2010 census. That’s more debt racked-up than in the first 100 Congresses combined, according to CNSNews.com. The total national debt as of the 111th Congress’ last day? $13.859 trillion.
The Government Union Bailout: As if one massive bailout weren’t enough, President Obama and the 111th Congress delivered another $26.1 billion bailout in the summer of 2010. The beneficiaries? Government unions and big-spending states that wouldn’t know a balanced budget if it smacked them in the face. The bill was supposed to “save” jobs, but the reality is that most jobs were never in jeopardy. (8/2010)
Wall Street Reform? Think Again: While President Obama touted the Dodd-Frank bill of 2010 as a reform of Wall Street and America’s financial rules, the resulting law is a boon for lawyers and lobbyists, thanks to its creation of 243 new formal rule-makings by 11 different federal agencies. What’s more, the bill “does nothing to stop future government bailouts,” makes a TARP-like bailout system permanent, and does nothing to reform two of the biggest culprits behind the financial crisis: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. (7/2010)
The “Neighborhood Destabilization Act”: Speaker Pelosi would refer to it as the “Helping Families Save Their Homes Act,” but in reality the law does the opposite by “putting millions of homeowners or potential buyers at greater risk of an unstable credit and housing market and creating high interest rates in the future.” And if you’re a responsible homeowner, you lose big time.
Cash for Clunkers: Stuck with an old car or truck? Under this plan, the U.S. government would have paid you $3,500 to $4,500 to trade it in for a new, more fuel efficient vehicle. Though the program boosted sales for the two months it was in place, a study showed the clunker program was a clinker. It didn’t bring new buyers into the market; it merely accelerated purchases. The cost to the taxpayers? $3 billion. (According to an Edmunds analysis, it came to $24,000 per car.) (6/2009)
New START: President Obama sold this nuclear arms treaty between the United States and Russia as an effort to reduce nuclear weapons. Conservatives, though, criticized it for being “useless in limiting proliferation, detrimental to missile defense, and counter to the purpose of defense treaties — defending and protecting America from her enemies.” (12/2010)
Cap-and-Trade: The Waxman-Markey climate bill that passed the House was intended to reduce carbon-dioxide emissions with the goal of curbing global warming. Were it enacted (which it wasn’t), the plan would have increased gas prices by 58%, and average household electric rates would increase by 90% by 2035. (Passed House in 6/2009; stalled in Senate)
Americans should expect better results from the 112th Congress, that is, if the newly-elected representatives heed their electoral mandate: less spending, lower taxes and limited government. But Americans should also be aware that even if Congress stays in line, President Obama can still pursue a big government agenda with more regulations from unelected bureaucrats. As the president said when the Democrats lost the House and failed to enact cap-and-trade, “I’m going to be looking for other means to address this problem.” America, look out.