In perhaps the most radical push yet for so-called “green energy” alternatives, the state of California has announced plans to ban the sale of any new gas-fueled cars by the year 2035.
On Thursday, as reported by the New York Post, the California Air Resources Board is set to approve a resolution called the Advanced Clean Cars II act, which will initiate a phase-out of gas-powered vehicles across the state of California over the next 12 years.
Without sufficient support in Congress and state legislatures to pass sweeping green energy measures, environmentalists are now targeting the oil and gas industry through a financial movement that pressures companies to support liberal policies, according to critics.
“ESG promotes and implements policies through private businesses that could be adopted through a legislative process,” said Utah Treasurer Marlo Oaks. “The Green New Deal didn’t make it through Congress, so its proponents shifted the battlefield to the capital markets.”
The Biden administration unveiled a policy Tuesday evening making it cheaper for green energy developers to build and maintain projects on federal lands.
Interior Secretary Deb Haaland announced the federal government would reduce rents and fees charged for wind and solar projects on public lands during a roundtable Tuesday with U.S. and state officials in Nevada. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) expects the policy to reduce rents and fees by more than 50% when implemented.
With more than 25 years of executive experience in the utility industry, people tend to listen when MISO CEO John Bear talks about energy.
And the message he’s sending about electricity shortages as Americans head into summer is clear.
American energy providers are planning to invest hundreds of billions of dollars in green energy, even as such projects lead to skyrocketing costs for consumers.
Energy companies are projected to spend $140 billion in both 2022 and 2023, upgrading grid infrastructure, building renewable energy projects and preparing for electric-vehicle-fueled demand, the Edison Electric Institute told The Wall Street Journal, marking the largest yearly totals since the industry group began tracking the figure more than two decades ago.
The White House said Americans should pay higher taxes to ensure a rapid green transition away from fossil fuels in a report on President Joe Biden’s economic record.
The federal government can encourage such a shift through carbon taxes or a cap and trade system forcing an emissions limit on companies, said the Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) report released last week. The White House added that consumers would continue purchasing “artificially inexpensive, carbon-intensive goods” without proper government policies in place.
The biggest decision the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is likely to make this year will be on mandated disclosure of information related to climate change and corporate environmental, social, and governance (ESG) goals. The Commission has been working on the issue since early last year, and a new proposed rule is now scheduled to be released on March 21st. The contents of that rule will likely determine the future direction of “responsible” investing in the United States.
In March of last year, then-Acting Chair Allison Herren Lee issued a request for information on the matter, consisting of 15 questions and described as a response to the “demand for climate change information and questions about whether current disclosures adequately inform investors.” The questions covered a wide range of topics, from how to measure greenhouse gas emissions to how climate disclosures “would complement a broader ESG disclosure standard.”
When the SEC first issued guidance on climate change-related disclosures for public companies in 2010, the standards were fairly general and advisory, but the questions from last year’s request-for-information suggests that the agency’s leadership is considering a more aggressive and prescriptive framework.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and soaring energy prices are a bracing wake up call to the West to abandon our anemic energy policies, which have pretended to be green but in reality have only shifted the dirtiest parts of our energy supply chains to bad actors like Russia and China. Western energy dependence on hostile powers limits our ability to preserve peace, to reduce our supply vulnerability, and to find the most cost-effective climate change solutions.
President Biden has acknowledged some of these problems, conceding that gasoline prices are too high and promising to do “everything in my power to limit the pain the American people are feeling at the gas pump.” But gas prices continue to rise, up by 10% in the last week.
One option President Biden has not yet explored is working with Congress to fix our incoherent domestic fuel policy to improve fuel efficiency across the board and reduce the amount Americans pay for gasoline. Currently, the EPA regulates fuels and automobiles separately, instead of as a single system. Automakers have the technological know-how to make much more efficient car engines, but regulatory barriers prevent them from doing so because they do not permit the use of cleaner fuels that would reduce carbon emissions and enhance performance.
President Biden and other White House officials dramatically changed their tune this week in defending their green agenda in the face of skyrocketing gas prices and Russia’s energy supply stranglehold over Europe.
Before Russia invaded Ukraine, Biden for months blamed increasing gas prices on supply-chain issues and pent-up post-pandemic demand for travel, deflecting questions on whether his push to move the country off fossil fuels was a factor.
Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine marks the end of the West’s Era of Illusions. It was an era in which Western elites obsessed about solving climate change because the climate crisis was far more dangerous than issues of war and peace and the stability of the international system. They even convinced themselves that climate change causes war, so climate change policy could double as national security policy; and, for many years, the annual round of kumbaya UN climate talks was the apogee of international relations.
In a BBC World Service interview, presidential climate envoy John Kerry expressed concern about the amount of greenhouse gas being emitted from the war in Ukraine. Kerry was just getting warmed up with a string of platitudes that show him as a deluded climate relic, unable to come to terms with the reality that Putin has imposed on the world. “Equally importantly,” Kerry complained, “you’re going to lose people’s focus,” as if the first invasion of a sovereign European country since the Second World War is an annoying distraction. Hopefully, Kerry continued, Putin would realize that Russia’s land is thawing, and the people of Russia are at risk.
Kerry concluded with an expression of pure self-deception, saying he hopes Putin “will help us to stay on track with respect to what we need to do for the climate.” Stay on track? Russia has never hidden its intention to avoid cutting its emissions. Russia’s second Nationally Determined Contribution, submitted in November 2020 under the Paris climate agreement, is to limit its 2030 emissions to “no more than 70% of 1990 levels.” The document is careful to avoid pledging to cut or reduce emissions. The 1990 baseline year was the last one before the collapse of the highly inefficient and heavily polluting centrally planned Soviet economy. Thus, the 70% limit actually enables Russia to increase its emissions by 34% – and that’s before taking account of any changes in forestry and land use that would allow Russia to claim credit for negative emissions.
Last week the Wall Street Journal reported that a shortage of fertilizer is causing farms in the developing world to fail, threatening food shortages and hunger. Ironically, the lead photo is of mounds of phosphate fertilizer in a Russian warehouse.
Modern synthetic fertilizers are typically made using natural gas or from phosphorous-bearing ores. The former provides the nitrogen that is critical to re-use of fields in commercial agriculture. They constitute more than half of all synthetic fertilizer production.
So what happens when oil and natural gas extraction are crippled in industrialized nations? One likely outcome is that the fertilizer manufacturing industry is also crippled, leaving both large commercial growers and smaller farms around the world starved of a key substance they need to grow food for hungry populations.
Present-day warming has been termed a crisis, and modern economic development a cancer. But what if I told you that much of the recent advancement in human prosperity would have been impossible without the temperature increases of the last several hundred years?
A key to the sustenance of any society is food security. Today’s world should be grateful for today’s relative warmth as well as higher levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide levels because both have been instrumental in propelling plant growth globally.
A review of human and climate history reveals a strong link between the rise and fall of temperature and the rise and fall of civilization—just opposite of what the climate doomsayers are telling you.