Analyzing The Impact Of Climate Change Legislation On Agriculture

Congressman Tim Holden of Pennsylvania, Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee’s Subcommittee on Conservation, Credit, Energy, and Research, held a hearing Dec. 2 to review economic analyses that consider the potential economic impacts of climate change on the farm sector.

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USDA’s chief economist Dr. Joseph Glauber and witnesses representing academic institutions and research organizations provided testimony about the results of analyses of the potential economic impacts on agriculture associated with climate change and climate change legislation.

Tomorrow, the Subcommittee on Conservation, Credit, Energy, and Research will hold a second hearing to focus on research related to the potential costs and benefits of agriculture offset proposals to address climate change.

“It is clear from today’s hearing that there is still a lot of uncertainty with some of the modeling assumptions and data used to estimate the potential impact of climate change and climate change legislation on agriculture. The expert testimony of our witnesses from USDA and those analysts and economists on the front lines of climate change research reaffirm that additional questions must be asked and answered before we draw any definitive conclusions,” Subcommittee Chairman Holden said.

“Today’s hearing demonstrated that there are serious economic consequences for our farmers under cap and trade due to higher energy prices and increased operating costs associated with it. We need to continue to study the impact climate change legislation would have on the future of agriculture,” said Subcommittee Ranking Member Bob Goodlatte (R-VA).

Written testimony provided by the witnesses is available on the Committee website: http://agriculture.house.gov/hearings/index.html.
A full transcript of the hearing will be posted on the Committee website at a later date.
 

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Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

All the discussion can stop now and the program trashed. Man-made global warming is a hoax. Always has been. So is cow-made global warming. Anyone with any common sense knew this and now with the release of the emails it has been proven. It was all a scam and the govt is running with it because it is a way to control the agriculture industry and get money. Cap and trade can also be trashed now.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

I suppose these esteemed congressmen took their lead from President Obama and choose willful ignorance of the news to watching Fox News or listening to (conservative) talk radio. Perhaps after they vote in cap and trade and impose the inevitable tax increases on all of us producers they will read the facts that have emerged concerning the hoax known as global warming. When food prices skyrocket and the already decimated economic situation declines further, will Al Gore be vilified as rabidly as Bernard Madoff? He and his decade-long scam certainly will have earned it!

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Carbon dioxide is not a greenhouse gas of any significance. It only has infrared absorbance at 2 very narrow bandwidths and has diminishing logarithmic absorbance at 80 to 100ppm. We are at 350-400ppm so it does nothing as a grrenhouse gas except higher CO2 does help plants grow faster and bigger with less nutrients. So more CO2 is better!!!! It is that simple!!!!

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Yes you are all correct. Gloabl warming/climate change is the biggest scientific fraud ever imposed upon the people of the world.
CAp and Trade and the Copenhagan Treaty are all about taxation, redistribution of wealth, golbal government, eugenics and is designed to put businesse out of business. This is total enslavement of the world to serve the international banksters!!! Nothing more than a total fraud. If Czar Obama signs the Copenhagan Treaty the USA will go under global governance and our constitution will be null and void. Even though this is a treaty and MUST be approved by Congress Czar Obama says he will just pass it on to the EPA to enforce. Welcome to the New World Order!!!!

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

%95 of all scientists assert global warming is real.You guys are chasing your tail.You had better prepare for this situation & work to accomodate the truth.Good possibility that the mid west will have temperatures in the triple digits.No matter what the cause,glaciers are melting & great land masses will be under water as well out of drinking water,Better to prepare than be sorry.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Dr. huh??? I think the highly educated have been brainwashed. These nitwits are promulgating it to keep the grant money coming. Dr. Hansen at NASA is about the worst of the batch. A computer glitch was just found and the ice now at the caps is at a point equal to or greater than when they started testing in the early 70’s. Global average temperatures have dropped in the last ten years. The smoke and mirrors can only go so far in covering up the real truth and it is finally being disseminated. The %95 is a bad statistic too. The majority of neutral scientists never did believe it, they just didn’t want to speak up and be skewered by the ignorant hoard in the media and free money loving grant grabbers. So much for the integrity of the peer revue process in scietific publishing. Climate has always been in change of some sort or the other and we are not able to do a thing about it except on some microclimatic level. The over regulation of habitats and the endangered species act and reintroduction of species without the proper environmental balance is causing all kinds of problems. Causing all kinds of crop damage and the overpopulations of them pushing species in to areas they have never been before. Its not global warming its our excessive interference that is causing problems. Wake up!! Do honest research in to it and think for yourselves. Don’t accept the propaganda that is being pushed by these people with a misguided agenda.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

If you have any doubt that global is a scam then do a little research to prove those who say it is a fraud wrong. Google 2 things, 1). Al Gore Club of Rome, 2). 31,000 scientists sign petition saying there is no global warming.
Cap and trade like the food safety bill, the clean water restoration act, the health care reform bill are all designed to take control of every aspect of your life by the governemnt. Wake up America!!!! You better google colectivism when you are doing your research to see what form of government you are living under now too.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Grants are monies from govt agencies or from groups who are funded by govt agencies. Any scientist who depends upon grants to do their work and pay their salary is now in question. They cannot go against the will of their bread and butter providers. This has resulted in much wrong science with “man-made” global warming being the largest Trojan horse of them all. Just goes to show what effect the power of money has on peoples credibility.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Wow. Let’s see here. The overwhelming majority of scientists believe global warming is happening and it is manmade. Interesting how you all seem to be experts on something you know absolutely nothing about. I wonder how it would be received if the body of knowledge that we have gained over our entire lives farming was simply dismissed as propaganda or some sort of hoax. Read the peer reviewed literature, turn off faux news, use your head.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Here is an interesting article that spellS out the overall effect that cap and trade will have on all of us. This is very bad for everyone. And YES there is concensus on clinate change, THE CLIMATE CHANGES, REMEMBER THE ICE AGE??? sTOP WATCHING CNN (THE CONTROLLED NEWS NETWORK AND EDUCATE YOURSELVES…. Research
All pain, no gain
The reality behind the mythology of Cap and Trade
October 8, 2009by CFACT
What is Cap and Trade?

To address concerns that global warming threatens our planet, activists and politicians are pushing for a “cap-and-trade” program that would limit and tax carbon dioxide released by power plants, cars, factories and other facilities. It is a very complicated regulatory scheme that penalizes businesses and people who use energy or electricity generated from oil, gasoline, natural gas and coal (fossil fuels).

Under cap and trade, Congress would place a limit or “cap” on the amount of carbon dioxide that our nation would be allowed to generate as a whole, and that limit would decrease drastically over time. Utilities, companies and business would be issued permits that grant them a certain “allowance,” or permit, saying how much carbon dioxide they can put into the air each year. If they cannot stay within that limit, they will have to switch to renewable energy from wind or solar, find ways to capture the carbon dioxide (CO2) and store it, or buy more “allowances” from companies that don’t need as much energy.

Those who support cap and trade don’t like to call it a tax, especially during a recession. Because taxes are politically unpopular, politicians and activists often refer to cap-and-trade costs as “user fees,” “emission limits,” “permits” and “trading.”

But it definitely is a tax on carbon – and it will hurt poor and middle class families and small businesses the most. In fact, when they’re more honest, some politicians actually admit that cap-and-trade really is a hidden tax that will send energy prices skyrocketing:

“Cap-and-trade is a tax, and it’s going to be a great big one.”

— Congressman John Dingell (D-MI)

“[It’s] the most significant revenue-generating proposal of our time.”

— Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD)

“Electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket” under cap and trade. Industry will have to “retrofit its operations. That will cost money, and they will pass that cost on to consumers.”

— President Barack Obama

Cap and trade penalizes and taxes everything we heat, cool, drive, make, grow, eat and do – because nothing is possible without energy. Our economy runs on energy, and 85% of the energy America uses is fossil fuels and wood. The price of everything we buy and do will skyrocket.

On top of that, cap and trade is incredibly complex. It will be administered by profit-seeking “carbon management” firms, regulated by thousands of government bureaucrats, and paid by every family, driver, business, school district, hospital, airline and farmer.

A lucky few will get rich. For everyone else, cap and trade will be all pain – for no gain.
The PAIN will be intense and widespread

The House of Representative passed a cap-and-trade bill in July. It requires that carbon dioxide emissions be reduced 83% below 2005 levels by 2050. That would send them back to levels last seen in 1908!

And that’s before accounting for the far smaller number of people living back then and the old-fashioned manufacturing, transportation and electrification systems of a century ago. Once those factors are taken into account, 2050 carbon dioxide emissions would have to equal what the United States emitted just after the Civil War!

Obviously, that means enormous changes in our energy costs, lifestyles and living standards. It means politicians, environmental pressure groups, unelected bureaucrats and judges will get to dictate:

-What kind of home you can have, and how warm or cool you can keep it. What kind of light bulbs you can use. What kind of car you can have, and how far you can drive it each year.
-How your food can be grown, how products can be manufactured, how far they can be shipped, and by what means. How far you can travel on vacation, and how you can get there.
It could also mean people receive personal “carbon allowances” that limit how much CO2 a person can emit annually and track energy use through credit card and other purchases. To call this a Green Nanny State would not be an exaggeration, with energy rationing and constant intrusion in our lives.

Some INCONVENIENT TRUTHS about alternative energy

Burning coal does create carbon dioxide. But coal generates 60-98% of the electricity in Ohio, Indiana and 18 other states, to support millions of manufacturing jobs. If we impose cap-and-trade policies, electricity rates will skyrocket – and many jobs will migrate to China, India and other countries.

Some say we could easily use more ethanol, wind and solar power, to produce other kinds of energy with less CO2. But relying on ethanol would mean growing corn or switchgrass on farmland the size of Montana, and using vast amounts of water, fertilizer, diesel fuel and natural gas. And when ethanol is burned, it gets less mileage per tank of gasoline, and emits more CO2 per mile than gasoline alone.

Wind and solar power would mean covering millions of acres of scenic habitat and farm land with huge turbines and solar panels. Hundreds of millions of tons of concrete, steel, copper, fiberglass and “rare earth” minerals would be needed to build them and thousands of miles of new transmission lines to get the expensive renewable electricity to distant cities. One expert calculated that just providing electricity for New York City would require wind turbines covering the entire state of Connecticut! Because the turbines and panels only work 25% of the time, back up natural gas generators would also be needed.

Impacts on JOBS and FAMILIES

Independent experts and even the Treasury Department say cap and trade would destroy over a million jobs over the coming decades … raise energy costs for the average American family by $1,400 to $3,100 per year … and send overall food and living costs upward by $4,600 annually.

Wealthier families can absorb these costs. But cap-and-trade will hit middle class families hard. And “families at the bottom of the economic scale already spend up to half of their incomes on gasoline, heating and cooling,” says Bishop Harry Jackson, Jr., a respected pastor who shepherds an inner-city church. They can’t afford any more pain.

Families could be forced to pay for skyrocketing energy and food costs from their college, retirement and vacation budgets. Hospitals and school districts would have to raise fees and taxes, or cut services. Cities and states would have to cover rising welfare and unemployment costs, as tax revenues dwindle. Tourism-based businesses and economies would get hammered, as fewer people could afford to travel.

Clearly, the threat is not from global warming. It is from policies imposed in the name of preventing climate disasters that exist only in computer models, press releases and Hollywood movies. Perhaps worst of all, as bad as these impacts are for people in the United States, they are even worse for poor countries.

Two billion people in poor countries still do not have electricity! That means no refrigeration, to keep food and medicines from spoiling. No water purification, to reduce baby-killing intestinal diseases. No modern heating and air conditioning, to reduce hypothermia in winter, heat stroke in summer – and lung disease year-round, because people are constantly breathing pollutants from cooking and heating fires.

It means no lights or computers, no modern offices, factories, schools, shops, clinics or hospitals. It means permanent poverty, disease and premature death – because some people care more about far-retched threats to bugs and polar bears, than about real, immediate, life-or-death threats to people, caused by policies that prevent them from getting the energy that will improve, sustain and save their lives.

The GAIN will be minimal to nonexistent.

Even the intense pain of slashing America’s carbon dioxide emissions by 83% over the next 40 years – all the way back to 1908 levels or earlier – will have virtually no effect on global temperatures and climate.

In fact, one climate researcher used the alarmists’ own computer models to calculate that even this pain and sacrifice would result in global temperatures rising just 0.1 degrees F less by 2050 than not cutting US carbon dioxide emissions at all. And that assumes rising CO2 causes global warming.

That’s because CO2 emissions from China, India and other countries would quickly dwarf America’s job-killing reductions. China is building a new coal-fired power plant every week and putting millions of new cars on its growing network of highways. So is India. They’re trying to reduce poverty, modernize their nations, improve human health, and ensure that every family, office, school and hospital has electricity.

After years of criticizing the United States for not signing the Kyoto global warming treaty, Europe will build 40 new coal-fired power plants by 2015. Germany plans to build 27 coal-fired electrical generating plants by 2020. Italy plans to double its reliance on coal in just five years.

So WHO will benefit?

The only people who will gain from penalizing energy use and over-regulating our economy are:

-Emission traders like Al Gore, who hope to make billions of dollars from cap and trade;
-Companies that get favored treatment (low-cost emission permits) under cap-and-trade laws, and can make big profits from selling their excess permits;
-Government bureaucrats who will regulate our economy, and police the trillion-dollar cap-and-trade market to prevent fraud and price gouging;
-Universities, scientists, environmental activists and renewable energy companies, which will continue to share $6-10 billion per year in taxpayer money, to conduct climate research (mostly warning about imminent global warming disasters), and build wind, solar and other projects; and
-Third World dictators, who will get carbon offset and cap-and-trade money to deposit in private bank accounts, for selling their people’s right to build hydrocarbon-fueled electrical generating plants.
Everyone else will pay dearly.

MYTHS about green energy and green jobs

For all this pain, there won’t even be net benefits from so-called “green energy” alternatives to the oil, natural gas and coal that now power 85% of the US economy. America’s oil and natural gas industry alone supports more than 9 million American jobs and contributed $1 trillion to the economy in 2007, according to a recent PricewaterhouseCoopers study. Coal generates one-half of all US electricity.

By contrast, wind and solar power together provide less than 1% of US energy – and do so only because of government renewable energy mandates and billions in subsidies and tax breaks. Increasing that to 10 or 20% of US electricity will be difficult, especially considering real-life experiences like these:

Spanish taxpayers spent $754,000 in subsidies for each “green” job created by the wind turbine industry (mostly jobs installing towering turbines) – and destroyed 2.2 regular jobs for each green job, primarily because pricey “renewable” electricity forced companies to lay off workers to stay in business.

With the aid of a large federal grant, Denver spent $720,000 to install solar panels on its Nature and Science Museum. The panels will reduce electricity bills. But it will take 110 years to save enough on those bills to pay for the panels – and the panels will only last 25 years!

Denmark actually generates only 4-18% of its electricity from wind, while its consumers pay the highest electric rates in Europe. It sends half of its taxpayer-subsidized power to Norway, Sweden and Germany. The rest of Denmark’s electricity comes from domestic or imported coal, hydroelectric, gas and nuclear.

The SCIENCE does not support climate disaster claims

President Obama says “dangerous carbon emissions contaminate the water we drink and pollute the air we breathe.” But carbon dioxide is not a pollutant. It is a vital plant fertilizer. It’s found in the air we exhale, and the beer, soft drinks, champagne and Perrier Water we drink.

More than 700 climate experts and 31,000 scientists say carbon dioxide has zero to minimal effect on Earth’s temperature, climate and weather. They back up that conclusion with solid evidence.

The Earth’s temperature increased 1 degree F during the last century, when warming and cooling trends are combined. They rose from 1915-1940 (1934 was the century’s warmest year), fell from 1940-1975, rose again from 1975-1998, then stabilized between 1998-2005, and then declined slightly 2005-2008 – as CO2 levels steadily climbed higher and higher. That clearly shows carbon dioxide does not cause global warming.

Computer models of climate and climate change are not “real world” evidence. They are no more reliable than computer predictions of future Super Bowl winners and scores, and not one of them predicted the recent planetary cooling. Their disaster scenarios are no more valid as a basis for laws, public policies and cap-and-trade schemes, than the special effects in “The Day After Tomorrow” or “Jurassic Park.”

The UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change insists that human carbon dioxide emissions drive global warming. It has never seriously investigated the possibility that climate change might be natural – which was clearly the case when the sun, shifts in ocean currents, and other natural forces caused the Ice Ages, interglacial periods, Roman and Medieval Warm Periods, Little Ice Age, Dust Bowl, and droughts that decimated Anasazi, Chinese, Inca and Mayan civilizations.

The BOTTOM LINE

There is no scientific basis for imposing cap-and-trade schemes. They would inflict massive pain for no gain on American businesses and families, and create an intrusive Green Nanny State that destroys jobs, reduces personal freedoms, and hobbles economic opportunities and civil rights

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

There is no use knowing any thing when every one else knows it all we are all on the same ship.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

When I read things like “95% of scientists agree” I am reminded of something called the Gadarene Swine Law, which states; “just because a crowd of people is all headed in the same direction doesn’t mean they actually know where they’re going”.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Could Al Gore explain to me how all the glaciers covering much of what we know as North America thousands of years ago receded? I checked to see if Halliburton, Exxon, SUV’s., George Bush, smoke stacks and wood burning cavemen were involved with the glaciers receding at that time. Nope.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Hello,

Climate patterns are complex and there is a great deal of uncertainty in understanding climate change. I appreciate the comments that are concerned that we may be penalizing our economic engine to solve a problem that is fraught with so much uncertainty.

There are several sources of evidence regarding the role of greenhouse gases in climate change. Yes, some of this is based on the long-term ice core records. These are correlations, which is not the same as causation. Nevertheless, they provide some evidence that increasing carbon dioxide concentrations are correlated with increasing temperatures. I find these correlations pretty compelling evidence that there might be some linkages, and it might be worth considering them as a potential concern.

Yes, the glacier have been melting since the last glaciation event; and we are in what is called an inter-glaciation period. No one doubts that the lost of our glaciers for the last 10k years is not natural part of the cycle the global has been in. What is surprising to many, is how quickly the loss of ice has been last few decades. In addition, an apparent decline in snow pack in some regions of the country, e.g. the Sierra Nevada mountains. There is still work to be done to figure out if the losses have accelerated due to anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions. For example, atmospheric deposition of dust and increase glacial melting too. In the last 100 years, we have probably increase dust deposition, which reduced the albedo (reflectance) of snow and causes it to melt faster. Although I think glaciers are pretty cool and their loss would be a drag, I am more concerned about the impact the loss of glaciers and snow would have on water supplies–which I have to save for some other time).

Let me say something about the actual temperature of the planet. Surprisingly, this is hard to measure. Our best records are in cities and city temperatures are generally increasing due to pavement and loss of vegetation and inversion layers (warm air gets trapped under cooler air). This is called a ‘heat island’. So, the medium-term temperature records are biased. There are more and more records away from cities, but it might be a while before these demonstrate definitive evidence that the climate is changing. Furthermore, it is important to keep in mind, that even if the average temperature of the planet goes up by a degree, the entire planet won’t experience the same warming or even the same trend. This makes even harder to detect changes, because some records might have conflicting trendlines.

I think the best way to measure the globe’s temperature might be by satellite, but the records are very short and even if the planet is warming, we still have a correlation, not a cause and effect relationship.

Carbon Dioxide (along with some other gases) does trap infared radiation (heat). Without some, the planet would be significantly cooler and we would have the exact opposite problem of a cold frozen planet. The point is not that carbon dioxide is bad. It is good, but like many things, it is good within certain limits. I think most would say that the last few hundred years have been relatively good, climate-wise. Many would like it to remain about the same temperature. Certainly by limiting the rise of sea ice melting has some better outcomes for many people (e.g. Oceania) and some animals (e.g. Polar Bears). Perhaps, my evangelical upbringing is getting in the way, but I like the idea of humans as caretakers of God’s creation and preventing the extinction of plants and animals seems like a worthy cause to me, if done appropriately.

One of the things that has not been in the news much is ocean acidification. In other words, the ocean is becoming more acidic, lower in pH, because of increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide can dissolve into the ocean. From what I can tell, this could impact many marine organisms, e.g. shell fish might have shell weakening and lose to predation. I recently saw a figure where the oceans were not expected to recover from the decline in pH for over 1000 years! This seems pretty compelling, but again, how do we appropriately respond?

So, what is appropriate. Do we sacrifice our economic growth to reduce carbon dioxide emissions (or all greenhouse gases)? I don’t know. I wonder if there are ways to reduce our rates without having to change much. I think there are some nice alternatives out there, but I don’t know that much abut that.

Finally, a comment about the climate models, often called general circulation models. These models are complex and require a great deal of computing times–more than hours, more like weeks. The models are young in their development, and provide some basis for climate change based on known climate drivers, but these models are also haunted with uncertainty. I advise a healthy skepticism of these models. They might turn out to be good fortune tellers, but at this point, there is no way to tell. Instead, I like to look at them to see what are sources of error or counter-intuitive results. I guess I am weird, but I think when the models fail, more can be learned. For the record, I am profoundly disappointed by any scientist who fails to embrace counter-intuitive results. They have lost opportunities to see something new.

I know I have not done a good job ranting and raving here, but it seems worth considering in my mind, that we proceed with caution in how we frame these issues and dialogue with some care and integrity. That is my goal, and I am sure I could do better. Because scientists rely on ways to generalize results, the climate problem of the globe is tough to tackle because there are not 20 planets to design a proper experiment (10 controls and 10 elevated co2 concentrations).

My best, marc

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Ooops, typo!

The reduction of glacier in the last 10k years IS part of the natural process! Sorry about that!

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

All the discussion can stop now and the program trashed. Man-made global warming is a hoax. Always has been. So is cow-made global warming. Anyone with any common sense knew this and now with the release of the emails it has been proven. It was all a scam and the govt is running with it because it is a way to control the agriculture industry and get money. Cap and trade can also be trashed now.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

I suppose these esteemed congressmen took their lead from President Obama and choose willful ignorance of the news to watching Fox News or listening to (conservative) talk radio. Perhaps after they vote in cap and trade and impose the inevitable tax increases on all of us producers they will read the facts that have emerged concerning the hoax known as global warming. When food prices skyrocket and the already decimated economic situation declines further, will Al Gore be vilified as rabidly as Bernard Madoff? He and his decade-long scam certainly will have earned it!

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Carbon dioxide is not a greenhouse gas of any significance. It only has infrared absorbance at 2 very narrow bandwidths and has diminishing logarithmic absorbance at 80 to 100ppm. We are at 350-400ppm so it does nothing as a grrenhouse gas except higher CO2 does help plants grow faster and bigger with less nutrients. So more CO2 is better!!!! It is that simple!!!!

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Yes you are all correct. Gloabl warming/climate change is the biggest scientific fraud ever imposed upon the people of the world.
CAp and Trade and the Copenhagan Treaty are all about taxation, redistribution of wealth, golbal government, eugenics and is designed to put businesse out of business. This is total enslavement of the world to serve the international banksters!!! Nothing more than a total fraud. If Czar Obama signs the Copenhagan Treaty the USA will go under global governance and our constitution will be null and void. Even though this is a treaty and MUST be approved by Congress Czar Obama says he will just pass it on to the EPA to enforce. Welcome to the New World Order!!!!

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

%95 of all scientists assert global warming is real.You guys are chasing your tail.You had better prepare for this situation & work to accomodate the truth.Good possibility that the mid west will have temperatures in the triple digits.No matter what the cause,glaciers are melting & great land masses will be under water as well out of drinking water,Better to prepare than be sorry.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Dr. huh??? I think the highly educated have been brainwashed. These nitwits are promulgating it to keep the grant money coming. Dr. Hansen at NASA is about the worst of the batch. A computer glitch was just found and the ice now at the caps is at a point equal to or greater than when they started testing in the early 70’s. Global average temperatures have dropped in the last ten years. The smoke and mirrors can only go so far in covering up the real truth and it is finally being disseminated. The %95 is a bad statistic too. The majority of neutral scientists never did believe it, they just didn’t want to speak up and be skewered by the ignorant hoard in the media and free money loving grant grabbers. So much for the integrity of the peer revue process in scietific publishing. Climate has always been in change of some sort or the other and we are not able to do a thing about it except on some microclimatic level. The over regulation of habitats and the endangered species act and reintroduction of species without the proper environmental balance is causing all kinds of problems. Causing all kinds of crop damage and the overpopulations of them pushing species in to areas they have never been before. Its not global warming its our excessive interference that is causing problems. Wake up!! Do honest research in to it and think for yourselves. Don’t accept the propaganda that is being pushed by these people with a misguided agenda.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

If you have any doubt that global is a scam then do a little research to prove those who say it is a fraud wrong. Google 2 things, 1). Al Gore Club of Rome, 2). 31,000 scientists sign petition saying there is no global warming.
Cap and trade like the food safety bill, the clean water restoration act, the health care reform bill are all designed to take control of every aspect of your life by the governemnt. Wake up America!!!! You better google colectivism when you are doing your research to see what form of government you are living under now too.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Grants are monies from govt agencies or from groups who are funded by govt agencies. Any scientist who depends upon grants to do their work and pay their salary is now in question. They cannot go against the will of their bread and butter providers. This has resulted in much wrong science with “man-made” global warming being the largest Trojan horse of them all. Just goes to show what effect the power of money has on peoples credibility.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Wow. Let’s see here. The overwhelming majority of scientists believe global warming is happening and it is manmade. Interesting how you all seem to be experts on something you know absolutely nothing about. I wonder how it would be received if the body of knowledge that we have gained over our entire lives farming was simply dismissed as propaganda or some sort of hoax. Read the peer reviewed literature, turn off faux news, use your head.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Here is an interesting article that spellS out the overall effect that cap and trade will have on all of us. This is very bad for everyone. And YES there is concensus on clinate change, THE CLIMATE CHANGES, REMEMBER THE ICE AGE??? sTOP WATCHING CNN (THE CONTROLLED NEWS NETWORK AND EDUCATE YOURSELVES…. Research
All pain, no gain
The reality behind the mythology of Cap and Trade
October 8, 2009by CFACT
What is Cap and Trade?

To address concerns that global warming threatens our planet, activists and politicians are pushing for a “cap-and-trade” program that would limit and tax carbon dioxide released by power plants, cars, factories and other facilities. It is a very complicated regulatory scheme that penalizes businesses and people who use energy or electricity generated from oil, gasoline, natural gas and coal (fossil fuels).

Under cap and trade, Congress would place a limit or “cap” on the amount of carbon dioxide that our nation would be allowed to generate as a whole, and that limit would decrease drastically over time. Utilities, companies and business would be issued permits that grant them a certain “allowance,” or permit, saying how much carbon dioxide they can put into the air each year. If they cannot stay within that limit, they will have to switch to renewable energy from wind or solar, find ways to capture the carbon dioxide (CO2) and store it, or buy more “allowances” from companies that don’t need as much energy.

Those who support cap and trade don’t like to call it a tax, especially during a recession. Because taxes are politically unpopular, politicians and activists often refer to cap-and-trade costs as “user fees,” “emission limits,” “permits” and “trading.”

But it definitely is a tax on carbon – and it will hurt poor and middle class families and small businesses the most. In fact, when they’re more honest, some politicians actually admit that cap-and-trade really is a hidden tax that will send energy prices skyrocketing:

“Cap-and-trade is a tax, and it’s going to be a great big one.”

— Congressman John Dingell (D-MI)

“[It’s] the most significant revenue-generating proposal of our time.”

— Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD)

“Electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket” under cap and trade. Industry will have to “retrofit its operations. That will cost money, and they will pass that cost on to consumers.”

— President Barack Obama

Cap and trade penalizes and taxes everything we heat, cool, drive, make, grow, eat and do – because nothing is possible without energy. Our economy runs on energy, and 85% of the energy America uses is fossil fuels and wood. The price of everything we buy and do will skyrocket.

On top of that, cap and trade is incredibly complex. It will be administered by profit-seeking “carbon management” firms, regulated by thousands of government bureaucrats, and paid by every family, driver, business, school district, hospital, airline and farmer.

A lucky few will get rich. For everyone else, cap and trade will be all pain – for no gain.
The PAIN will be intense and widespread

The House of Representative passed a cap-and-trade bill in July. It requires that carbon dioxide emissions be reduced 83% below 2005 levels by 2050. That would send them back to levels last seen in 1908!

And that’s before accounting for the far smaller number of people living back then and the old-fashioned manufacturing, transportation and electrification systems of a century ago. Once those factors are taken into account, 2050 carbon dioxide emissions would have to equal what the United States emitted just after the Civil War!

Obviously, that means enormous changes in our energy costs, lifestyles and living standards. It means politicians, environmental pressure groups, unelected bureaucrats and judges will get to dictate:

-What kind of home you can have, and how warm or cool you can keep it. What kind of light bulbs you can use. What kind of car you can have, and how far you can drive it each year.
-How your food can be grown, how products can be manufactured, how far they can be shipped, and by what means. How far you can travel on vacation, and how you can get there.
It could also mean people receive personal “carbon allowances” that limit how much CO2 a person can emit annually and track energy use through credit card and other purchases. To call this a Green Nanny State would not be an exaggeration, with energy rationing and constant intrusion in our lives.

Some INCONVENIENT TRUTHS about alternative energy

Burning coal does create carbon dioxide. But coal generates 60-98% of the electricity in Ohio, Indiana and 18 other states, to support millions of manufacturing jobs. If we impose cap-and-trade policies, electricity rates will skyrocket – and many jobs will migrate to China, India and other countries.

Some say we could easily use more ethanol, wind and solar power, to produce other kinds of energy with less CO2. But relying on ethanol would mean growing corn or switchgrass on farmland the size of Montana, and using vast amounts of water, fertilizer, diesel fuel and natural gas. And when ethanol is burned, it gets less mileage per tank of gasoline, and emits more CO2 per mile than gasoline alone.

Wind and solar power would mean covering millions of acres of scenic habitat and farm land with huge turbines and solar panels. Hundreds of millions of tons of concrete, steel, copper, fiberglass and “rare earth” minerals would be needed to build them and thousands of miles of new transmission lines to get the expensive renewable electricity to distant cities. One expert calculated that just providing electricity for New York City would require wind turbines covering the entire state of Connecticut! Because the turbines and panels only work 25% of the time, back up natural gas generators would also be needed.

Impacts on JOBS and FAMILIES

Independent experts and even the Treasury Department say cap and trade would destroy over a million jobs over the coming decades … raise energy costs for the average American family by $1,400 to $3,100 per year … and send overall food and living costs upward by $4,600 annually.

Wealthier families can absorb these costs. But cap-and-trade will hit middle class families hard. And “families at the bottom of the economic scale already spend up to half of their incomes on gasoline, heating and cooling,” says Bishop Harry Jackson, Jr., a respected pastor who shepherds an inner-city church. They can’t afford any more pain.

Families could be forced to pay for skyrocketing energy and food costs from their college, retirement and vacation budgets. Hospitals and school districts would have to raise fees and taxes, or cut services. Cities and states would have to cover rising welfare and unemployment costs, as tax revenues dwindle. Tourism-based businesses and economies would get hammered, as fewer people could afford to travel.

Clearly, the threat is not from global warming. It is from policies imposed in the name of preventing climate disasters that exist only in computer models, press releases and Hollywood movies. Perhaps worst of all, as bad as these impacts are for people in the United States, they are even worse for poor countries.

Two billion people in poor countries still do not have electricity! That means no refrigeration, to keep food and medicines from spoiling. No water purification, to reduce baby-killing intestinal diseases. No modern heating and air conditioning, to reduce hypothermia in winter, heat stroke in summer – and lung disease year-round, because people are constantly breathing pollutants from cooking and heating fires.

It means no lights or computers, no modern offices, factories, schools, shops, clinics or hospitals. It means permanent poverty, disease and premature death – because some people care more about far-retched threats to bugs and polar bears, than about real, immediate, life-or-death threats to people, caused by policies that prevent them from getting the energy that will improve, sustain and save their lives.

The GAIN will be minimal to nonexistent.

Even the intense pain of slashing America’s carbon dioxide emissions by 83% over the next 40 years – all the way back to 1908 levels or earlier – will have virtually no effect on global temperatures and climate.

In fact, one climate researcher used the alarmists’ own computer models to calculate that even this pain and sacrifice would result in global temperatures rising just 0.1 degrees F less by 2050 than not cutting US carbon dioxide emissions at all. And that assumes rising CO2 causes global warming.

That’s because CO2 emissions from China, India and other countries would quickly dwarf America’s job-killing reductions. China is building a new coal-fired power plant every week and putting millions of new cars on its growing network of highways. So is India. They’re trying to reduce poverty, modernize their nations, improve human health, and ensure that every family, office, school and hospital has electricity.

After years of criticizing the United States for not signing the Kyoto global warming treaty, Europe will build 40 new coal-fired power plants by 2015. Germany plans to build 27 coal-fired electrical generating plants by 2020. Italy plans to double its reliance on coal in just five years.

So WHO will benefit?

The only people who will gain from penalizing energy use and over-regulating our economy are:

-Emission traders like Al Gore, who hope to make billions of dollars from cap and trade;
-Companies that get favored treatment (low-cost emission permits) under cap-and-trade laws, and can make big profits from selling their excess permits;
-Government bureaucrats who will regulate our economy, and police the trillion-dollar cap-and-trade market to prevent fraud and price gouging;
-Universities, scientists, environmental activists and renewable energy companies, which will continue to share $6-10 billion per year in taxpayer money, to conduct climate research (mostly warning about imminent global warming disasters), and build wind, solar and other projects; and
-Third World dictators, who will get carbon offset and cap-and-trade money to deposit in private bank accounts, for selling their people’s right to build hydrocarbon-fueled electrical generating plants.
Everyone else will pay dearly.

MYTHS about green energy and green jobs

For all this pain, there won’t even be net benefits from so-called “green energy” alternatives to the oil, natural gas and coal that now power 85% of the US economy. America’s oil and natural gas industry alone supports more than 9 million American jobs and contributed $1 trillion to the economy in 2007, according to a recent PricewaterhouseCoopers study. Coal generates one-half of all US electricity.

By contrast, wind and solar power together provide less than 1% of US energy – and do so only because of government renewable energy mandates and billions in subsidies and tax breaks. Increasing that to 10 or 20% of US electricity will be difficult, especially considering real-life experiences like these:

Spanish taxpayers spent $754,000 in subsidies for each “green” job created by the wind turbine industry (mostly jobs installing towering turbines) – and destroyed 2.2 regular jobs for each green job, primarily because pricey “renewable” electricity forced companies to lay off workers to stay in business.

With the aid of a large federal grant, Denver spent $720,000 to install solar panels on its Nature and Science Museum. The panels will reduce electricity bills. But it will take 110 years to save enough on those bills to pay for the panels – and the panels will only last 25 years!

Denmark actually generates only 4-18% of its electricity from wind, while its consumers pay the highest electric rates in Europe. It sends half of its taxpayer-subsidized power to Norway, Sweden and Germany. The rest of Denmark’s electricity comes from domestic or imported coal, hydroelectric, gas and nuclear.

The SCIENCE does not support climate disaster claims

President Obama says “dangerous carbon emissions contaminate the water we drink and pollute the air we breathe.” But carbon dioxide is not a pollutant. It is a vital plant fertilizer. It’s found in the air we exhale, and the beer, soft drinks, champagne and Perrier Water we drink.

More than 700 climate experts and 31,000 scientists say carbon dioxide has zero to minimal effect on Earth’s temperature, climate and weather. They back up that conclusion with solid evidence.

The Earth’s temperature increased 1 degree F during the last century, when warming and cooling trends are combined. They rose from 1915-1940 (1934 was the century’s warmest year), fell from 1940-1975, rose again from 1975-1998, then stabilized between 1998-2005, and then declined slightly 2005-2008 – as CO2 levels steadily climbed higher and higher. That clearly shows carbon dioxide does not cause global warming.

Computer models of climate and climate change are not “real world” evidence. They are no more reliable than computer predictions of future Super Bowl winners and scores, and not one of them predicted the recent planetary cooling. Their disaster scenarios are no more valid as a basis for laws, public policies and cap-and-trade schemes, than the special effects in “The Day After Tomorrow” or “Jurassic Park.”

The UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change insists that human carbon dioxide emissions drive global warming. It has never seriously investigated the possibility that climate change might be natural – which was clearly the case when the sun, shifts in ocean currents, and other natural forces caused the Ice Ages, interglacial periods, Roman and Medieval Warm Periods, Little Ice Age, Dust Bowl, and droughts that decimated Anasazi, Chinese, Inca and Mayan civilizations.

The BOTTOM LINE

There is no scientific basis for imposing cap-and-trade schemes. They would inflict massive pain for no gain on American businesses and families, and create an intrusive Green Nanny State that destroys jobs, reduces personal freedoms, and hobbles economic opportunities and civil rights

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

There is no use knowing any thing when every one else knows it all we are all on the same ship.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

When I read things like “95% of scientists agree” I am reminded of something called the Gadarene Swine Law, which states; “just because a crowd of people is all headed in the same direction doesn’t mean they actually know where they’re going”.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Could Al Gore explain to me how all the glaciers covering much of what we know as North America thousands of years ago receded? I checked to see if Halliburton, Exxon, SUV’s., George Bush, smoke stacks and wood burning cavemen were involved with the glaciers receding at that time. Nope.

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Hello,

Climate patterns are complex and there is a great deal of uncertainty in understanding climate change. I appreciate the comments that are concerned that we may be penalizing our economic engine to solve a problem that is fraught with so much uncertainty.

There are several sources of evidence regarding the role of greenhouse gases in climate change. Yes, some of this is based on the long-term ice core records. These are correlations, which is not the same as causation. Nevertheless, they provide some evidence that increasing carbon dioxide concentrations are correlated with increasing temperatures. I find these correlations pretty compelling evidence that there might be some linkages, and it might be worth considering them as a potential concern.

Yes, the glacier have been melting since the last glaciation event; and we are in what is called an inter-glaciation period. No one doubts that the lost of our glaciers for the last 10k years is not natural part of the cycle the global has been in. What is surprising to many, is how quickly the loss of ice has been last few decades. In addition, an apparent decline in snow pack in some regions of the country, e.g. the Sierra Nevada mountains. There is still work to be done to figure out if the losses have accelerated due to anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions. For example, atmospheric deposition of dust and increase glacial melting too. In the last 100 years, we have probably increase dust deposition, which reduced the albedo (reflectance) of snow and causes it to melt faster. Although I think glaciers are pretty cool and their loss would be a drag, I am more concerned about the impact the loss of glaciers and snow would have on water supplies–which I have to save for some other time).

Let me say something about the actual temperature of the planet. Surprisingly, this is hard to measure. Our best records are in cities and city temperatures are generally increasing due to pavement and loss of vegetation and inversion layers (warm air gets trapped under cooler air). This is called a ‘heat island’. So, the medium-term temperature records are biased. There are more and more records away from cities, but it might be a while before these demonstrate definitive evidence that the climate is changing. Furthermore, it is important to keep in mind, that even if the average temperature of the planet goes up by a degree, the entire planet won’t experience the same warming or even the same trend. This makes even harder to detect changes, because some records might have conflicting trendlines.

I think the best way to measure the globe’s temperature might be by satellite, but the records are very short and even if the planet is warming, we still have a correlation, not a cause and effect relationship.

Carbon Dioxide (along with some other gases) does trap infared radiation (heat). Without some, the planet would be significantly cooler and we would have the exact opposite problem of a cold frozen planet. The point is not that carbon dioxide is bad. It is good, but like many things, it is good within certain limits. I think most would say that the last few hundred years have been relatively good, climate-wise. Many would like it to remain about the same temperature. Certainly by limiting the rise of sea ice melting has some better outcomes for many people (e.g. Oceania) and some animals (e.g. Polar Bears). Perhaps, my evangelical upbringing is getting in the way, but I like the idea of humans as caretakers of God’s creation and preventing the extinction of plants and animals seems like a worthy cause to me, if done appropriately.

One of the things that has not been in the news much is ocean acidification. In other words, the ocean is becoming more acidic, lower in pH, because of increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide can dissolve into the ocean. From what I can tell, this could impact many marine organisms, e.g. shell fish might have shell weakening and lose to predation. I recently saw a figure where the oceans were not expected to recover from the decline in pH for over 1000 years! This seems pretty compelling, but again, how do we appropriately respond?

So, what is appropriate. Do we sacrifice our economic growth to reduce carbon dioxide emissions (or all greenhouse gases)? I don’t know. I wonder if there are ways to reduce our rates without having to change much. I think there are some nice alternatives out there, but I don’t know that much abut that.

Finally, a comment about the climate models, often called general circulation models. These models are complex and require a great deal of computing times–more than hours, more like weeks. The models are young in their development, and provide some basis for climate change based on known climate drivers, but these models are also haunted with uncertainty. I advise a healthy skepticism of these models. They might turn out to be good fortune tellers, but at this point, there is no way to tell. Instead, I like to look at them to see what are sources of error or counter-intuitive results. I guess I am weird, but I think when the models fail, more can be learned. For the record, I am profoundly disappointed by any scientist who fails to embrace counter-intuitive results. They have lost opportunities to see something new.

I know I have not done a good job ranting and raving here, but it seems worth considering in my mind, that we proceed with caution in how we frame these issues and dialogue with some care and integrity. That is my goal, and I am sure I could do better. Because scientists rely on ways to generalize results, the climate problem of the globe is tough to tackle because there are not 20 planets to design a proper experiment (10 controls and 10 elevated co2 concentrations).

My best, marc

Avatar for Anonymous Anonymous says:

Ooops, typo!

The reduction of glacier in the last 10k years IS part of the natural process! Sorry about that!