Dear Mr. President, please stop BS’ing us on AGW

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Yahoo today ran photos from across Europe this morning of the effects of early Spring snow. Britain, France, Germany and much of the rest of Europe have been faced with some of the most snow and cold since the 1960’s. I was a miserable winter and at Easter, still a miserable early Spring.

Today’s Telegraph estimates that 30,000 people will have died this winter season from weather related conditions. Earlier this year, a group of Norwegian students made a video mocking both the celebrity driven cause industry and global warming. Radi – Aid, sending radiators to Norway, can be seen here.

This week’s Economist gives another data point. Apparently, the models predicted by AGW advocates such as James Hanson, the NASA propagandist, for global warming are not working out the way they thought they would. Surface temperatures across the planet are at the low-end of the predictions and there hasn’t been any actual, you know, global warming in 10 years according to the numbers. What is emerging is that the climate change advocates really don’t know. Climatology is hard, you see. The weather in most places changes every day.

And those anthropomorphic polar bears the AGW crowd are using as poster bears for climate change? Well, there are a hell of a lot more of them on the planet than there were 25 years ago according to every single study written. It seems that our government has been trying to cover this up as well. ‘When the facts don’t fit the narrative change the facts” is government policy.

We have gone from Global Warming to Climate Change to WTF.

Yes, climates on the planet are changing. Why and how? We do not know. Climatology is a new science. It used to be called meteorology and we didn’t have a lot of faith in the TV weathermen in predicting tomorrow’s weather back in the ancient times oh 20 years ago or so.

Now we have experts with a kernel of data extrapolating some amazing consequences 50 or 100 years down the line. The data does not meet the bullshit test.

But this is what Al Gore and our President believe as gospel, and therein lies the rub. The president has authorized hundreds of billions, if not trillions of dollars in green energy projects that have failed or for which there is no real financial expectation of a reasonable return on investment, either ecologically or financially.

At the same time, the Administration has done its best to exterminate the coal industry, interfere with oil and gasoline prices, stymie nuclear power, and oppose natural gas. This is all part of their strategy. It is no accident. It is the stated goal of the green energy industry to work with government to raise the price of conventional energy to a point where green energy is competitive. Cheap energy is the enemy.

Bjorn Lomborg, the original skeptical environmentalist, wrote in the Wall Street Journal recently that the actual cost of green energy is much higher. The models used by corporations and government do not accurately reflect the energy, materials, and labor input in manufacturing green energy technology, which already relies far too much on government subsidies. I keep on thinking of all of those poor Germans in their worst winter in ages and their commitment to solar power. I wonder what the output of a solar array is in a snowstorm or the fog?

Solar power survives on voodoo economics. They don’t discuss the failure rates of modules or inverters or other components or the fact that dirt will drop the efficiency of a module array by 30-50%. All of the models reflect and unicorn and rainbow logic.

Just this morning, the EPA announced a new set of rules reducing sulphur and its emissions that would raise the price of a gallon of gasoline by a minimum of $0.09/gallon at a time of already record energy prices.The United States consumes 368 million gallons of gasoline per day, so this new tax will cost us $33 Million/day or $12 Billion/year. And who pays? Everybody. Who does it hurt the most? The middle class and poor.

The heavy thumb of government is already being felt in CAFE standards driving the standards for MPG up to a level that will kill the current automobile industry. And by the way, you and I have no voice in the discussion. It is a diktat by bureaucratic fiat. Stroke of the pen, law of the land government.

And the guy at the top of the pyramid is driving this bus. It is one of his core beliefs. The President is willing to use all of these tools because he feels that the United States uses too many of the world’s resources. How he came to that conclusion I am not sure, but it probably has to do with his elitist leftist education and the echo chamber he lives in. Facts, to them, are an inconvenient truth. It is about control.

So as the central tenets of anthropogenic global warming become shakier and the economics of green energy are seen to be a lie what happens? The record of this president indicates that he will double down. It is crucial to his political agenda to be right in all things.He is still in campaign mode. And if one of his core beliefs is challenged he is inflexible. This much we do know after four years.

But facts are pernicious. He has created an edifice based upon inaccurate information, and his policies must be challenged. BS should not be government policy.

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Obama’s war on conventional energy and problem with the facts

The President spoke at length last night about his energy policy. He implied that under his administration the United States was producing more energy than ever before and took credit for the current shale oil and gas boom. And yet he has a terrible record on energy.

His War on Coal began long before the 2008 election. On January 17, 2008 in an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle, the candidate said:

“So if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can; it’s just that it will bankrupt them because they’re going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that’s Thousands of jobs at both coal mines and power plants have already been lost.

Immediately, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Interior began to work hand in glove to re-write existing regulations on emissions; on new technology implementation; and even on the remediation of mining sites. Energy Secretary Chu re-stated this in early 2011. Credit Suisse estimated that by 2020 the targets would take over 35 Gigawatts of power off-line. Already numerous power plants and mines have been forced to close.

In the meantime, Secretary Chu, long before he took the job stated while at Lawrence Livermore Laboratories: “Somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe.” in order to reduce dependence upon foreign oil. he seems to have gotten his wish.

A few weeks into the new administration in March 2009, the President proposed his Cap & Trade Bill in the depths of the worst economic recession in 75 years. This would have done absolutely nothing to reduce greenhouse gases but would have created a market for hundreds of billions of dollars in credits to be traded. The power companies would have passed the bill onto the customer, and people like Al Gore, who has already made over $100 Million on the practice, would have made even more. The bill passed in the House but died in the Senate. Both houses were controlled by the Democrats at the time, but the bill was so egregious enough Democrats voted against it to kill it. But it was very close.

The president was proud to point out “Over the last three years my administration has approved dozens of new pipelines, including from Canada.  And we’ve opened millions of acres for oil and gas exploration.  All told we plan to make available more than 75 percent of our potential offshore oil and gas resources from Alaska to the Gulf of Mexico.” A small part is true, but the rest is clearly pure smoke, as will be demonstrated.

It is true that the president approved the southern part of the Keystone XL pipeline but he dramatically cancelled the much more important northern portion, which would make Alberta’s massive oil sands an integral part of the North American oil infrastructure. He wildly misstated his pipeline approvals.

He also said: “In 2010, our dependence on foreign oil was under 50 percent for the first time in over a decade.  We were less reliant on foreign oil than we had been.  In 2011, the United States relied less on foreign oil than in any of the last 16 years. ” Perhaps the worst financial downturn since the great depression may have had something to do with this.

But the Energy Information Administration reported in January that production of oil and gas  on federal and Indian lands is down 40% from 10 years ago. In January, the Bureau of Land Management reported that 2010 was the worst year since 1984 for new lease sales, and there was only one lease auction in all of 2011. Once again, the president’s statement is at odds with the facts.

Between 20 April, 2010 to mid 2011, all offshore and much inshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico was shut down because of the Deepwater Horizon moratorium. It was only  in early – 2011 that permits for offshore drilling began to be issued. Only recently have those levels returned to normal in the face of $4.00/gallon gasoline..Deepwater Well approvals

The war on conventional energy in Alaska alone is worth noting. In Alaska, The Department of Interior just banned drilling in 50% (11.5 million acres) of Alaska’s National petroleum reserve.The state of Alaska sued the federal government in 2010 for violating federal regulations in banning offshore drilling in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas. Shell Oil has been trying to drill for several years and has been blocked by various federal agencies at every step by any means possible. Exploratory drilling in the Cook Inlet has also been blocked by methods including the Jones Act, which requires U.S. hulled ships to be used. But in this case, there are no U.S. hulled ships that can be used. Catch 22 again.

The President also touted his approval of new nuclear power plants. There have been four reactors approved; all of them additional reactors at existing plants. No new plants have been approved. New plants are caught up in a Catch 22 because the President’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB) was supposed to offer a form of credit insurance that would allow the operators to go to the markets for capital, but has yet to do so. Vague, yet effective Senator Harry Reid was also been very effective in quashing the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste storage site in cooperation with Obama’s NRC Chairman Gregory Jackzo. Jackzo was forced to resign in May for intimidation, harassment and a harsh working environment. Jackzo was adamantly against new nuclear power plants.

Last night the President bragged about the new natural gas rush. the only problem is that the federal government has once again done its best to stop this bonanza. If you recall, in 2010 EPA Regional Administrator Al Armendariz, responsible for the Texas/Louisiana oil patch, recommended (video) that the EPA crucify companies engaging in fracking. he was involved in a number of controversial cases in his region where he was apparently using these tactics and was forced to resign earlier this year. This seems to be official policy as there have still been no leases granted on federal land and the EPA has repeatedly been challenged successfully on their data.

Oil, Coal, Nuclear, and Natural Gas. The facts contradict the president and yet he remains unchallenged. The war on Hydro in the Northwest is also well-known, but is not at the same level yet.

Green Energy is problematic and a niche resource at best. I am not sure what the President’s game is, but he has done his best and has lied about it. Watch what he does; not what he says.

“Would you like a E 85 Super frappe, sir?” “Or perhaps you would prefer the pumpkin spice regular?” – explaining California’s insane energy system

Driving by the local gas station this morning I saw that regular was at $4.65/gallon. Anyone who has been reading the dead tree media or watching television now has California’s gas crisis on the radar.

Refinery fires and the winter gas switchover and Jerry Brown’s haircut have combined to send prices skyrocketing. California finds itself once again leading the nation in foolishness.

Here in California, where we still actually have a substantial oil industry, we have had higher prices than anyone in the country with the exception of Hawaii and Alaska for the past 40 years. California was the first state in the union to manage air quality. I remember as a boy having recess and sports cancelled because the smog in the San Gabriel Valley was so bad.

The state created agencies and a set of regulations 3′ thick on gasoline formulations and exhaust scrubbers for factories and solvent usage, and today 30% of our air pollution comes in courtesy of coal-burning power plants in China. Even with this the air is still much cleaner, but our regulatory system has gone insane.

You cannot build a refinery in California anymore. You would have to be certifiable to go through the regulatory process. Just the mention of such a project would have the Sierra Club and Earth First and the Environmental Defense Fund lawyered up and descending upon Sacramento like a Mongol Horde taking no prisoners. There is no compromise in their vocabulary.

Then comes the Methyl Tert Butyl Ether (MTBE) scam. MTBE was used in gasoline as an oxygenator to raise fuel octane and help it burn more efficiently, but it was outlawed in the early ’00’s because it was a groundwater pollutant. The problem with that logic is that gasoline itself is highly dispersant and one gallon can pollute up to 750,000 gallons of water. A minimal additive can do little to affect the basic science. But California and New York and then the EPA decided that we needed our own special blends.

Then came ethanol. It too is an oxygenator. Most of the ethanol in this country comes from corn. We could buy sugar ethanol from Brazil, which is cheaper and has a much higher energy potential, but the American sugar lobby and the corn ethanol lobby will have none of that.

The price of corn has been at record levels for the past year not only because of the drought, but because the law mandates up to 10% ethanol in conventional fuels, with E 85 (15% ethanol) growing rapidly. It doesn’t matter that corn ethanol has 66% of the energy efficiency of gasoline, or that processing corn ethanol is highly inefficient and costly. The subsidies are massive. When villagers in Egypt are rioting over the rising cost of flour, Pharoah in Washington has said “so let it be written. So let it be done” on corn prices. The United States could do more good in the Middle East today by re-purposing our corn crop than our fumbling diplomatic efforts to date.

Then came our Starbucks Winter and Summer blends courtesy of the EPA. So we have our own special California blends on top of it the EPA mandated blends. Mocha frappucino E-85? Half & half latte Super? It’s no wonder the refineries have had fires recently. They’re so damned confused they probably threw the wrong switch.

California’s gasoline industry is a mess. Our power generation industry is a mess. We now experience regular power outages. All because of the regulatory environment. Electronics manufacturers in the Los Angeles area are no longer allowed to use simple rubbing alcohol to clean circuit assembles any more, no matter if it’s one or 1,000. So there goes that industry.  And all kinds of manufacturing has been exiting the state at an accelerating rate.

California is one of the wealthiest political entities in the world, but an insane regulatory environment has the state in free fall economically. It might even be mitigated by have a cleaner environment, but regular sewage dumps along the coast because of overstretched water treatment plants have one checking the water quality every time you go to the beach. We’d rather build high-speed rail lines to nowhere.