Enviro News Wrap: EPA Can Regulate Greenhouse Gases; Exxon's Engineering Problem; More Renewable Energy in the Grid, and more...
GlobalWarmingisReal contributor Anders Hellum-Alexander wraps-up and comments on the climate and environmental news headlines for the past week:
- A big win for the EPA and Environmentalism happened in a US federal court last week. The court upheld the US government's ability to regulate greenhouse gases through the EPA and even went so far as to uphold the idea that greenhouse gases should be regulated due to the large negative effect on humans and our environment. This was an easy decision as the conservative arguments on this subject are so clearly wrong, and this is easy to see when the discussion is taken off of the national news platform and placed in a court of law based on fact and logic.
- Sheldon Adelson is giving $10 million to the Koch brothers to spend on conservatives in this year's elections. Adelson also gave $21 million to Newt Gingrich during his run for President, while the Koch brothers were the sole backers of Herman Cain. This is how environmental policy is decided; a couple of rich conservatives spend millions of dollars to get their chums in office so they can make sure that the environmental problems caused by their companies don't get addressed by the government.
- ExxonMobil supports adapting to a Mad Max type future instead of just preventing the collapse of our environment as we know it. This is proof that the oil industry wants to get every lost drop of profit out of oil and has no interest in creating a sustainable future. Don't believe the lies in the oil company advertisements.
- Another US Solar manufacturer is going out of business while the US Solar installation industry is doing well.
- With the Arctic melting from the burning of too many fossil fuels, countries like the US, Canada, Norway and Russia are rushing north too see if they can get more oil from areas that are no longer covered by ice. We are now watching human society spiral downwards into an indulgent addiction to oil.
- Carbon trading schemes are an alternative to putting a tax on carbon emissions. In the US we have leaned toward setting up these complex markets for trading carbon credits because of the political cost of supporting a tax for anything. The problem with these trading schemes is that they are easy to exploit and hard to regulate. Taxing carbon emissions is a much easier system to manage.
- Renewable energy is taking over more and more of the US electricity grid, despite all the opposition this industry is still growing.
- Oil has a volatile price, it was up really high in the beginning of this year, then it dropped a lot in the last 2 months, now it is back up again. There is an oil strike in Norway, sanctions on Iran are starting as Iran publicizes new threats towards Israel and the European Union is in turmoil with the price of oil dropping and spiking in response. I ask this all the time: why should we base our economy on a volatile and dirty energy source? If we are going to talk about the drawbacks or shortcomings of renewable energy it always has to be in relation to the devastation and uncertainty that comes with an oil and coal-based economy.
- Finally, the fisherman of Cape Cod have decided to drop their suit against the wind project and will instead work with the project to ensure that the development is favorable for all parties.