• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Morning Bell: The Futility of Cap and Trade

    Yesterday, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon hosted a climate summit in New York designed to improve the chances that the December U.N. Copenhagen Climate Conference would produce a substantive treaty that would cap and cut carbon emissions. The Copenhagen agreement would replace the Kyoto Protocol that was rejected by the United States Senate 95 – 0. But as the Washington Post reports, even President Barack Obama’s star power failed to move nations towards meaningful carbon reductions:

    Initially, many climate activists had hoped this year would yield a pact in which nations would agree to cut their greenhouse gas emissions under the auspices of a legal international treaty. But recent announcements by China, Japan and other nations point to a different outcome of U.N. climate talks that will be held in December in Copenhagen: a political deal that would establish global federalism on climate policy, with each nation pledging to take steps domestically.

    But climate “federalism” would be pointless. It is called ”global” warming for a reason. Just ask Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson who admitted to the Senate this July that “U.S. action alone will not impact CO2 levels.” This is 100% consistent with all the best science which shows that the carbon reductions under the Waxman-Markey cap and trade bill will not affect global temperatures in any material way. For example a recent study of cap-and-trade by MIT concluded:

    The different U.S. policies have relatively small effects on the CO2 concentration if other regions do not follow the U.S. lead…The Developed Only scenario cuts only about 0.5 °C of the warming from the reference, again illustrating the importance of developing country participation.

    Yesterday China tried to upstage Obama by selling their plan to “tackle this challenge” including promises improve the energy intensity and … plant more trees. But as University of Colorado professor of environmental studies Roger Pielke points out, China’s energy intensity claims simply defy reason:

    China’s energy intensity in 2008 is about the same as it was in 2001. Any claim that China’s energy intensity has improved by 20% over the past five years is incorrect. … energy intensity has improved by only about 7.4% since 2005, meaning that it has a long way to go to reach a 20% target by 2010. Can it happen? Sure. But to say that China is “well on its way” does not square with the data. It would be “ironic” indeed if China has figured out how to grow its economy at 9% per year while increasing energy use by only 3% and decarbonizing its economy at an even lower amount. If this were true, then China would have discovered the holy grail of emissions reductions and we can all forget about the challenges of climate policy.

    Economic growth is China’s number one priority, not global temperatures, which as the New York Times points out “have been relatively stable for a decade and may even drop in the next few years.” China isn’t the only one focused on providing jobs instead of appealing to the sensibilities of the enviro-left. The World Bank is spending billions to help poor countries build coal power plants. Marianne Fay, the bank’s chief economist for sustainable development, told The Times: “There are a lot of poor countries which have coal reserves and for them it’s the only option. The [bank’s] policy is to continue funding coal to the extent that there is no alternative and to push for the most efficient coal plants possible. Frankly, it would be immoral at this stage to say, ‘We want to have clean hands, therefore we are not going to touch coal’.”

    Forcing people to sacrifice their jobs and economic opportunity to lower temperatures that are not rising is immoral. But that is exactly what the cap and trade legislation in Congress would do.

    Quick Hits:

    Posted in Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

    39 Responses to Morning Bell: The Futility of Cap and Trade

    1. Bob, CO says:

      As stated, cap and trade will force people to sacrifice their jobs and economic opportunity for a cause that is not scientifically proven. Voice opposition to this horrible piece of legislation at http://tiny.cc/pxIgi.

    2. Joe Honick, Bainbrid says:

      I am constantly amazed that you seem to know precisely what is wrong about virtually everything but nothing about what are the alternatives to what you criticize. In my many years in the military and in business before starting my own firm, I was always schooled to have alternatives to anything to which I objected or go on my way. Why is it that an organization with your financing and years in business cannot find positive alternatives to what you condemn or simply get out of the way?

    3. Joe Honick, Bainbrid says:

      I just took note of the language you use in reviewing my comments and of course those of others: Your comment in currently undergoing "moderation." That does carry the sound of censorship.

    4. LeRoy Reed says:

      What is the matter with this government, except greed! Neuclar Power would sure save. We must vote Reid out. He is another greedy person…In fact the whole darn bunch of them in the government!!!! Vote them out!!

    5. Anne Bryan Bell - K says:

      IF YOU ARE HONEST WITH YOURSELF, EVERYTHING THAT obama HAS DONE ALONG WITH PELOSI, REID, BOXER ETC… HAS BEEN TO UNDERMINE AND CRUSH THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. ISN'T IT DIABOLICAL THAT RATHER THAN GO AFTER THE REAL CAUSE OF HIGH HEALTH CARE COSTS (FRAUD AND TORT REFORM) THEY TRY AND TURN THIS COUNTRY INTO A SOCIALIST NATION IN EVERY WAY??? THERE IS EVIL IN DC AND SO MUCH CORRUPTION THAT ONLY GOD CAN SAVE US… WHERE ARE YOU PATRIOTIC AMERICANS WHO ARE LETTING US DO THE FIGHTING FOR US, INSTEAD OF PARTICIPATING???? 98 PERCENT OF CONGRESS NEEDS TO BE VOTED OUT…. THE CZARS MUST GO…. GET IN THERE WITH ALL THE OTHER ASTROTURF AMERICANSS AND GET INVOLVED…..

    6. Ben C, Ann Arbor says:

      Didn't the head guy from the UN committee on climate just admit that the world will be cooling off for a few years? AS stated before, climate has more to do with solar activity (flairs) and less to do with people. But then you can't tax the sun.

    7. Danny/Fla says:

      Dear Morning Bell: The Futility of cap and trade,is just that.! The Economy for one thing has never been fully explored. And the reason i would make such, an observation is the-further you withdraw from the true human denominator-the people suffer, as well as the structure, that supports tangible commodities. These would be jobs, and everything that supports prosperity, and the basic, economic tax structure.The Economy, and everything that is derived from our everyday, and important decisions, comes from the lowest commom worker.A Free America- Is a Free American.

    8. Ken Jarvis - Las Veg says:

      Why does the HF EXIST?

      Since they believe ALL is HOPELESS.

    9. Wayne Murray Columbu says:

      A couple of things from [the 2nd edition – August 11, 2009 Minister Wong’s Reply to Senator Fielding’s, Three Questions on Climate Change – Due Diligence1].

      Page 24

      The scientific community is now so polarised on the controversial issue of dangerous global warming that proper due diligence on the matter can only be achieved where competent scientific witnesses are cross-examined under oath and under the strictest rules of evidence.

      Page 60

      ? an over-reliance on unvalidated computer model

      ? a failure to take full account of natural climate variability, short to mid-length climatic rhythms, to explain temperature changes;

      ? an absence of any new empirical data in support

      dangerous global warming caused by human carbon

      and

      ? a failure to consider many recent papers and discussions evidence that conflicts with warming alarmism.

      In consequence, many of the conclusions of Climate Change More Serious Risks are misleading; and they are unsuitable, a basis for the development of public climate policy.

    10. Publius Huldah, Cook says:

      If the Senate were to ratify the "cap & trade" treaty, would it become part of the "supreme law of the land" (Art. VI, clause 2, U.S. Constitution)?

      I answer that question using The Federalist Papers & Thomas Jefferson as my authorities, at my blog at http://publiushuldah.wordpress.com/

      I show you how to discover the "original intent" of The Constitution. It's fun & not that difficult!!

    11. Cathy Amelio, New Je says:

      About time probes and investigations are being done! I really thought that this administration was being held to far differenct standards then past administrations! Now on to the House and Senate! Let's weed them out as corruption is business as usual from the White house on down!

      Vote them all out! 2010 can't come soon enough!

      God help this country!

    12. Richard Cancemi, Arl says:

      We may be able to have an impact on our environment but we do not have the ability to effect the climate. Climate variations are the results of cosmic events,viz.the sun's activity and relationship to earth.

      Idiots like Al Gore, who push their myths on other idiots, use the fallacy of energy control to control climate is a charade.

      Fanatic environmentalists use the "Progressive" politicians to pass idiotic Bills harmful to us all, while "Progressive" politicians use the fanatic environmentalists to grab power over us all.

      Cap and traders are Progressive (Socialist) opportunists who seek to use the myth that climate can be controlled to grab more control over our lives.

      Socialism has NEVER resulted in making any country great. It has resulted in ruining nations and enslaving people.

      The United(do nothing)Nations wants itself to be the center of "World Unity" and Globalization of Nations. How is it that the majority of the anti-American countries who want to bleed us are countries that do the least for themselves? They are failures as countries and their "leaders" are parasites sucking the life out of their countrymen.

      We would do well to rid ourselves of this Progressivist invention called the UN and dedicate ourselves to the resumption of making America once again the strongest,richest and most blessed Country history has ever seen. Our greatness came from Capitalism not Socialism.

      True, we must be responsible in the development and application of our resources but we must unshackle ourselves from the fanatical bindings of environmentalists. Any legislation should be to make people's lives better, but not to give the Government more and more power over "we the people".

      We must take back our Country; we must take back our Government.

    13. T Perry, Orange Park says:

      Global warming is the biggest hoax ever perpetrated. Global ignorance is astonishing.

    14. Don, Centennial,CO says:

      Man made global warming has to be the greatest fraud perpetrated on the American people. How can we be so arrogant as to assume our very small input into the solar system could possibly effect any great change. Look at the influence of the sun flares as they relate to our climate and you will be close to understanding changes in climate. This is an event that has been going on since the birth of our system. CO2 is not a contaminate- we exhale this in our lives and it supports the growth of vegetation.

    15. Bob Veigel, Arlingto says:

      When we respond to this nonsense we are saying that this may be a problem. This Cap & Trade scam and sham is pure political horse manure. It should be treated as such. Scoop it up and throw in the compost pile. This is just another tax raising program. It would also add to the destruction of America. Only incompetent freaks endorse this junk.

    16. Jerry S. Dickinson, says:

      Mt theory is the ultimate goal of the true authority over mans affairs within society is single authority. World Order if you like. In order to herd all of us "cattle" into that form first they must level us all out. Americans enjoy a standard of living by far superior to any other like number of people on Earth. It is an impossible task to convince middle America to destroy that condition. Likewise it is impossible to lift up the other cultures to our economic level. The long term answer is to reduce our expectation. If in fact global warming were true the approach would be much more sweeping and across the board. The effects of Cap and Trade will most effect upper middle America. They will break our will thru punitive taxation, investment deflation, retail inflation and poor medical care.

      They are working to restrict free travel thru the 'green' car revolution. Every green car you read about is based upon a moderate drive to a destination with a charging station, and a return trip ending at a charging station. What about the Saturday morning trip to the lake for a picnic or the week long hunting trip iunto the woods? Another great freedom gone within the next twenty years.

    17. givingGrandma, SC says:

      Is it really JUST humanity affecting global warming? A volcano in the Hawaiian Islands has non-stop been sending lava at 2000 degrees into the Pacific since 1968 – has actually added 600 acres of land. Couldn't a steady 2000 degrees into the waters for over forty years contribute to the ice melting?

    18. Jerry S. Dickinson, says:

      Ken Jarvis, good day sir. Liberals would love to close down all opposition to their impudence. But, in reality someone has to be the Adult. Historically, once the liberals have had their reign at power the Adult conservative must step in and clean up the mess. If you have raised children it is similar to when the parents go to the movies and leave three kids home alone. There is always something to cleanup. Without failure while you are fixing the mess all three are standing there claiming they had nothing to do with it,or pointing their fingers at each other.

      That is why the Heritage Foundation doesn't close it's doors in desperation. Someone has to clean up the mess.

    19. AMT says:

      Cap and trade will make a number of people very rich.
      http://globaltyranny.tk

    20. Whicket Williams Kin says:

      We all know that climate change is a lie to steal money and freedom When are we impeaching? Why not Now?

    21. JKassel St.Louis, M says:

      Please EDIT with a period following the "go out of business." strike "OR" and replace with "They will be forced to pass along the energy costs with higher prices."

      Sorry, I did not edit my own writing.

      JKassel

    22. Lloyd Scallan - New says:

      When are all of the people understand this is not

      about green house gases, carbon emissions, or the

      environment, IT'S ABOUT POWER. Obama wants the power to control every aspect of our lives. If this crap and tax bill passes, you will not recongnize this country in 5 years.

    23. Wallace, DC says:

      It would be "federal" in the way our constitution is. I.E. Not actually federal.

    24. Pingback: Wednesday’s Quick Read « SCHotline Mobile

    25. Dennis A. Social Cir says:

      The dems and obama are still wanting the UN to run things, and give them the power to do so each day. I think we need to get out of the UN, kick them out of the USA, and stop spending tax money to keep up the thugs. I have never seen any thing worth while they have done. I really believe the UN wants one world government and will do what ever they deen necessary to get there.

    26. Ron Derry NH says:

      Perhaps science should address the human issue of why so many charlatans are aggressively seeking government positions, jobs and grants at the cost of the productivity of others??

      It seems we are being harassed by a college propagated infestation of soothsayers and extortionists in need of jobs to match the degree they have gleaned from higher learning but have no lucrative business setting that will justify their imagined worth.

      Still, they need a place to parasitically attach themselves by means of threat and self importance to coerce their value from government's loose financial strings to play the game and keep the charade going.

      I would imagine that ancient Rome suffered the same harassing wave of soothsayers and charlatans bamboozling their way to positions of self importance by creating the same threats and the "sky is falling" mantra as they ingratiated themselves on handouts, stolen worth and then threats to bodily or world harm at the expense of the worried naive and trusting masses.

      The Democrats are at the moment the leaders in this venue and are pushing for more money sent to them, their friends,and their causes all in the name of threatening everyone with speculative science and loose ideas.

      It seems religion takes many forms…..but always the same methodology when its based on lies and a contempt for ones fellow man. The proof that it is religion and not science is they feel the need to threaten you and tax you but none of them give up their polluting ways or debate the issue with alternative and apposing thinkers without attacking the messenger and ignoring huge amounts of contradictory evidence. The whole hope is that pushing the conclusion will defy any hard debating on the assumption, that you can be fooled by momentum easier than convinced with facts.

      All hail the left and its religious zealotry!

    27. Joan Sarasota FL. says:

      I'm sure enough people will vote Obama out however with this bunch I wouldn't count on them leaving. The time his term is up we will be a banana republic. It makes me want to sit and cry for all who have fought for this country to end up having this mental case and his gang of thugs rip our country apart. They are an evil bunch.

    28. lfamick@gmail.com says:

      Top down policies never benefit free enterprise. Did any legislator ever visit a family farm or ranch after NAFTA, let alone before that great idea? Not a single lawmaker ever experiences the truth of their great ideas. After the NAFTA free trade concept, what really happened? Other countries began bringing in cheaper livestock, which undercut our ranchers. When our ranchers attempted to take the same products to the "free trade" country their livestock was often left at the border, inhumanely dehydrating in thier own waste, waiting for the unraveling of red tape. China grows their economy by importing to countries like the US. Trying to manufacture anything in the US is an invitation to a litany of lawsuites and an endless barage of impossible union demands. Trying to force another country to adhere to a standard that we levy upon our own country is beyond rediculous and would start a war of global economic dissaster. The lawyers and the unions need to back off of the US, unless of course their goal is to destroy our ecomony. In that case they are doing a fine job!

    29. Pingback: Garden State Patriot | Haley Barbour On C(r)ap & Trade

    30. mike hutchings texas says:

      the messiah speaks;

      bask in my radiance support cap and trade;

      moo my sweet cattle, moo i say;

      give me your money or the glaciers will melt away;

      give your future and i will re-write your past;

      you do what i tell you and forget the old way;

      line up and shut up and stay out of my way;

    31. Pingback: » Financial News Update – 09/23/09 NoisyRoom.net: Where liberty dwells, there is my country…

    32. Lee-White Tanks AZ says:

      Note the following quote from MIT:

      For example a recent study of cap-and-trade by MIT concluded:

      The different U.S. policies have relatively small effects on the CO2 concentration if other regions do not follow the U.S. lead…The Developed Only scenario cuts only about 0.5 °C of the warming from the reference, again illustrating the importance of developing country participation.

      Based on this paragraph one would be led to believe that this conclusion was actually based on scientific fact. NOTHING COULD BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH.

      There are no computer models that will give reliable answers to just such a question as is raised by the participation or non-participation in Carbon Reduction schemes by China, India and others.

      There is no such SCIENCE. There is not one shred of empirical data to support any relationship between atmospheric temperature variations and atmospheric CO2 content.

      There is no laboratory or experimental data to support CO2 as an agent of runaway atmospheric temperatures. There is no chemical, thermodynamic or catalytic property of CO2 to support some kind of a "tipping point" where global atmospheric temperatures would soar as a function of CO2 content.

      For such an institution as MIT to make such a claim is terribly misleading at best and intellectually dishonest at worst. Government Grants uber allus!

      Below is a brief list of my academic background. I would not add this accept I am so sick and tired of the misleading and outright criminally negligent information (propoganda) that continues to be spread by our Political Class aided and abetted by a fawning academia.

      PC is Thought Control

      LEE

      My education credentials:

      Chemical Engineering Purdue Univ., Industrial Engineering Univ. of MO, BSIE cum laude, Engineering and Business, Arizona State Univ., Master of Science

    33. Pingback: The Futility of Cap and Trade « Prayer, News & Action

    34. Aavo Taaler - Montan says:

      Would be a lot easier to outlaw campfires – i.e. if California could avoid 4 major forest fires a year, that would reduce the CO2 levels into the atmosphere the same amount as all of the coal fired power plants in California put out for an entire year.

    35. LeRoy Reed says:

      The only thing Obama wants is to RULE the world!!! Can't people see what he is doing? I have said ths before, you can't believe any thing this government is saying or doing!!! If we the people don't take control of this mess we will have nothing. People need to wake up!!!

    36. Robert, Schaumburg, says:

      You present as fact that carbon emissions, greenhouse gas emissions, and "global warming" are proven problems, then go on to say that the results of Cap & Trade legislation will not effect their levels. Would you please FIRST provide proof and substantiation of the first matters? Otherwise, you play into the positions of the "Lefties" while arguing about the methods of addressing those issues – without first establishing that they even need to be addressed!

    37. Pingback: RagingElephants.org » News for 09/24/09

    38. John, Colorado says:

      Repeatedly, inventors have figured out how to split water super-efficiently, and actually run engines with water as the feul.

      Why not put the axe to all the global warming baloney, and in six months to a year, convert all our vehicles to run on water?

      This would eliminate our oil industry, but be worth the trade. We would be de-funding Russia, Iran, and Islam, and saving probably a trillion dollars a year. Unemployed oil workers would have to find another job, perhaps in new industries, such as home electrical generation unit installation and maintenance.

      At no energy cost, we could desalinate seawater and pump it anywhere, turning the Great Plains into an even more productive breadbasket, and providing all the water needs of the West.

      If we are going to have an economic adjustment, especially one headed up by communistic idiots, then lets have an adjustment that results in a major technological reorientation.

    39. Pingback: 1,120 Days – and Counting – Till Election 2012! | Extreme Conservatives

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.

    ×