Politics

Back room jostling over climate legislation

Expect a lot of it

As I mentioned the other day, MarketWatch is doing a big series of articles on business and climate change. This one gets right to the heart of why we’re hiring a D.C. reporter. Now that things have transitioned from whether there’s going to be climate legislation to what climate legislation is going to look like, lots of elbows are getting thrown. There are dozens and dozens of stakeholders who stand to be affected by legislation, and they’re all getting busy trying to influence how it works. There’s going to be lots of back-room dealing in the coming few years. Just …

All so predictable

Corn ethanol bubble stretched thin

Expect the venture capitalists who started this pyramid scheme to quietly jump ship, leaving those who came in last holding the steaming bag. This article is behind the Wall Street Journal subscription wall and I can't post the whole article, though I would certainly like to. Several excerpts follow: Earlier this year, Mr. Chambliss introduced a bill calling for even greater ethanol use, though with one striking difference: The bill caps the amount of that fuel that can come from corn. Turns out Georgia's chicken farmers hate corn-based ethanol; Georgia's pork producers hate corn-based ethanol; Georgia's dairy industry hates corn-based ethanol; Georgia's food producers hate corn-based ethanol; Georgia's hunters hate corn-based ethanol. And all that means Mr. Chambliss has had to find a new biofuels religion. (Thanks again, KO!)

'We don't believe targets and timetables are important'

U.S. continues to resist pressure on climate change

If I may indulge for a moment in some blogospheric vitriol and vulgarity … I really can’t wait ’til these a**holes are gone: The United States will fight climate change by funding clean energy technologies and will continue to reject emissions targets or cap and trade schemes, its chief climate negotiator Harlan Watson said on Thursday. … “We don’t believe targets and timetables are important, or a global cap and trade system,” Watson told Reuters, speaking on the fringes of a UN hosted climate change meeting in Bonn. “It’s important not to jeopardise economic growth.”

Why Does Bill Richardson Hate America?

Democratic presidential candidate unveils ambitious energy plan Today we bring you part 16 of “Promising Energy Policies Put Forth By U.S. Presidential Candidates Who Don’t Have a Chance in Hell of Getting Elected.” This week, New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson (D) has been touting his plan for battling global warming. Yesterday, saying the country needs something as bold as JFK’s “man-on-the-moon” program, Richardson said he is “calling for a new American revolution — an energy and climate revolution.” The one person listening got really excited as Richardson outlined his plan, which includes increasing fuel economy to 50 miles per gallon …

Profiles in straight-talkin' courage

McCain flip-flops on ethanol

John McCain tries to explain his flagrant flip-flop on ethanol: (via Hugg)

Bill Richardson's climate and energy plan

The boldest plan on the table

As of today, Bill Richardson has become the boldest, most visionary Democratic presidential candidate on climate and energy policy. (John Edwards is a close second.) No politician from either party has put forward a plan that comes closer to being a realistic response to the energy shortages and climate chaos heading our way. Here’s the heart of Richardson’s speech today: We need a man-on-the-moon program to end this addiction, this hemorrhage.  But we need it much faster and much more boldly than people are suggesting. When John F. Kennedy challenged this country to reach the moon, he challenged us to …

Bill Richardson introduces climate and energy plan

Reviews are good

New Mexico governor and Democratic presidential candidate Bill Richardson gave a big speech today in which he introduced what sounds like an extremely ambitious climate and energy plan. The speech isn’t online yet, and the plan isn’t on his site yet, so all I have to go on is reactions from people who have seen it. [Update [2007-5-17 11:48:0 by David Roberts]: No sooner do I post this than I find the speech online, along with a helpful summary of the plan. More later.] Brian Buetler says: The plan was, in keeping with the pattern, slightly more extraordinarily ambitious than …

Gore in <em>Time</em>

A great profile

Time magazine has a long, insightful, and sympathetic profile of Al Gore in the latest issue. The theme is "the last temptation of Gore," i.e., the temptation of running for president. But as the article makes clear, it’s not that tempting, for all the reasons we’ve discussed here before. Anyway, read it — it’s extraordinarily good. Moving, even. They’ve also got an excerpt from Gore’s new book, The Assault on Reason. I’ve got a copy on the way — I’ll report back once I’ve read the whole thing.

In Eighteen Hundred Seventy-Two, Ulysses Made the Greenies Blue

Legislation introduced to overhaul ancient mining law In 1872, President Ulysses S. Grant signed a mining-regulation law — and while resource extraction has changed significantly since then, the rules haven’t. Now Rep. Nick Rahall (D-W.Va.) is seeking to revamp what he calls “the Jurassic Park of all federal laws,” introducing a proposal that would require land-reclamation plans, make some public lands off-limits to mining, and impose an 8 percent royalty on minerals. The revenue from the tax — similar to what oil, natural gas, and coal companies already pay — would go to clean up highly toxic abandoned mines in …

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