May 21, 2009

Waxman-Markey: A completely futile legislative exercise

Filed under: Climate Politics

As we have discussed here, and as has been discussed elsewhere, it is straightforward to determine the likely climate impact from legislation aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Yesterday we showed how little climate impact the proposed national fuel efficiency standards would have, today we turn our attention to the climate impact of the proposed Waxman-Markey American Clean Energy and Security Act—which despite the name, is squarely aimed at attempting to mitigate future global climate change.

What we are interested in is this: if the U.S. is successful in meeting the greenhouse gas emissions reductions as prescribed in the Waxman-Markey legislation (ultimately a 83% reduction in U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by the year 2050), how much global warming would be averted?


May 20, 2009

No Climate Impact from New National Fuel Efficiency Standards

Recently we worked through the steps required to derive a handy-dandy way to convert carbon dioxide emissions savings to global temperature savings and suggested a few ways in which to apply it. Our primary objective was to put into everyone’s hands a quick-and-easy way for the common man to do what most climate-change-through-emissions-reductions advocates won’t do themselves (or, rather, don’t want you to know the result)—that is, put a climate face on their proposed actions.

The reason that they don’t do this themselves, is that despite all the global warming bluster, their proposed actions have virtually no direct impact on the course of future climate change.

Such is the case with the recently proposed national automobile fuel efficiency standards.


May 6, 2009

The Waxman-Markey “Climate” Bill Does Nothing for the Climate

Filed under: Climate Politics

In our last article, we developed a rule of thumb for converting greenhouse gas emissions to global temperature change and showed how to apply it to commonly encountered “save the planet from global warming” campaigns. This is good information to carry around in your back pocket for you next encounter with a global warming do-gooder.

But much more rigorous approaches can be had (although they don’t arrive at a much different answer than our simple converter). One such analysis details the climate impacts of the proposed Waxman-Markey Climate Bill that has been the subject of so much attention in Washington these past weeks.

The bottom line: the greenhouse gas emissions reduction provisions detailed in Waxman-Markey do virtually nothing to alter the projections of future climate change. In other words, Representatives Waxman and Markey (and all the rest of the bill’s supporters) want us to take on a huge risk (both in our personal and national economics and sacrifice) for no meaningful climate gain.

That should be a hard sell.

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