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Donald Trump's Climate Change Executive Order Will Make Energy Cheaper

But it will not bring back a lot of coal mining jobs.

TrumpClimateChangeNewscomErik McGregor/Sipa USA/NewscomPresident Donald Trump issued a new executive order today that aims to roll back Obama administration energy policies that sought to address the problem of man-made climate change. The Obama administration's climate strategy stood on three pillars: Tightening corporate average fuel economy standards (CAFE) for vehicles; the Clean Power Plan designed to cut by 2030 carbon dioxide emissions from electric power generation plants by 30 percent below their 2005 levels; and a moratorium on federal coal leasing. These measures were adopted to meet President Obama's commitment to reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions in 2025 by 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels under the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

The CAFE standards are now being reassesed. In February, the chief executives of 18 auto companies sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) asking that it review the Obama administration's stringent CAFE standards. EPA administrator Scott Pruitt subsequently announced that his agency will conduct such a review decide by April 2018 if the standards should be loosened. The transportation sector is responsible for 26 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, amounting to about 1.7 gigatons of carbon dioxide in 2014. That's down from the 1.85 gigatons pre-global financial crisis peak of vehicle emissions in 2005.

Electric power generation is responsible for about 30 percent of U.S. carbon dioxide emissions. In 2014, burning coal for electric power generation emitted 1.57 gigatons of carbon dioxide. That is down significantly from peak emissions of nearly 2 gigatons in 2007. In 2014 emissions from natural gas burnt for electric power generation amounted to 0.44 gigatons. Basically, burning natural gas to generate electricity produces about half of the carbon dioxide that burning coal does. Since the carbon dioxide emissions from coal are so much greater than those from alternative fuels, the Clean Power Plan's carbon dioxide reduction goals would essentially force electricity generators to close down many of their coal-fired plants.

President Trump hopes that unraveling the Clean Power Plan will bring back lost coal-mining jobs. "A lot of people are going to be put back to work, a lot of coal miners are going back to work," President Trump told a rally in Louisville, Kentucky last week. "The miners are coming back." That is unlikely for two reasons: automation and cheap fracked natural gas.

U.S. coal production has dropped from 1.1 billion tons in 2011 to 0.9 billion tons in 2015. If 2016 fourth quarter coal production remained steady at the 2015 level, that would still mean that overall production will have fallen by nearly a third to 0.74 billion tons in 2016. Coal production in the Appalachian region in 2015 was 44 percent lower than it was in 2000. Power companies have been steadily switching from coal to natural gas as the fracking boom boosted production from 19 trillion cubic feet in 2005 to 28 trillion cubic feet in 2016. Last year, burning natural gas generated 33 percent of America's electricity compared to 32 percent from coal.

The upshot is that lower demand for coal means fewer jobs. In 2011, 89,500 people worked as coal miners. That has dropped 50,000 now. In addition, higher productivity means lower demand for workers. Due to automation miner productivity soared rising from 1.93 tons per miner hour in 1980 to 6.28 tons per miner hour in 2015.

Rolling back the Clean Power Plan means going through a long regulatory review process that will be opposed at every turn by environmental activist groups. Assuming that it is eventually revoked, what would that mean for future U.S. carbon dioxide emissions? Without the Clean Power Plan, the Energy Information Administration projects that U.S. energy-related carbon dioxide emissions would remain essentially flat up to 2040.

President Trump also lifts the moratorium on federal coal leasing imposed in 2015 by the Obama administration. The moratorium was part of the same "keep fossil fuels in the ground" strategy that motivated the Obama administration's refusal to approve the Keystone and Dakota Access pipelines to transport oil. Given the low demand for coal it is not at all clear that mining companies will be eager to open new mines on federal lands any time soon.

Trump also ordered federal agencies to drop climate change as a consideration when promulgating new regulations. The Obama administration devised the social cost of carbon (SCC) as a metric accounting for the effects on climate of any project that would result in the emissions of carbon dioxide. Currently, the social cost of carbon is $36 per ton emitted. However, the Obama administration violated various regulatory standards in order to get to this figure including using lower than usual discount rates and making calculations based on global rather than domestic harms.

As I reported earlier, using the $36 per ton SCC, the EPA calculated that implementing the Clean Power Plan would yield climate benefits amounting to $30 billion in 2030. "However, estimated domestic climate benefits only amount to $2–$7 billion, which is less than EPA's estimated compliance costs for the rule of $7.3 billion," noted Brookings Institution analyst Ted Gayer in recent congressional testimony. "The use of a global social cost of carbon to estimate benefits means that agencies will adopt regulations that could cost Americans more than they receive in climate-related benefits."

One side effect of setting aside the Obama administration's social cost of carbon calculation is that it will likely hasten the shut down of a goodly percentage of America's nuclear power industry. Why? Nuclear power plants are being out-competed by electricity generated from cheap natural gas and subsidized wind and solar power. Without subsidies tied to social cost of carbon calculations, "more than half the U.S. nuclear fleet may currently be at risk of closure," according to a new report from the centrist Third Way think tank.

During the presidential campaign, Trump promised to "cancel" the nonbinding Paris Agreement on climate change. On Sunday, new EPA head Scott Pruitt declared that the universal climate agreement was a "bad deal." However, President Trump will not make a decision about withdrawing from the Paris Agreement in his executive order. The Obama administration submitted a nationally determined contribution that committed to reducing overall U.S. greenhouse gas emissions in 2025 by 26 to 28 percent of their 2005 levels. Instead of withdrawing from the agreement, Rep. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) is urging the president to submit "a new pledge that does no harm to our economy."

There is some evidence that U.S. unemployment rate fluctuates with the fall and rise in gasoline prices. So one way to think about the effects of Obama administration climate policies is to consider how higher energy prices in European countries are affecting their economies. A U.S. Chamber of Commerce study estimated the adopting European energy policies would force the average American household to pay $4,800 more per year for their energy than they to today. Overall, European-style energy policies would eliminate 7.7 million jobs and cut labor incomes $364 billion. Of course, these estimates need to be taken with a grain of salt, but it is undeniable that scaling back the Obama administration's climate regulations should result in lower energy prices for American consumers. Lower prices mean more money in the pockets of Americans to spend in alternative ways that will tend to boost overall employment.

But what about the climate? By one calculation implementing the Obama administration's Paris climate pledge fully would reduce the future increase in average global temperature by 0.031 degree Celsius by 2100. Fulfilling all of the Paris pledges together would reduce future temperatures in 2100 by 0.17 degree Celsius. On the other hand, more robust economic growth will produce the wealth and new technologies that will help future generations to cope better with whatever future climate change occurs.

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Without subsidies tied to social cost of carbon calculations, "more than half the U.S. nuclear fleet may currently be at risk of closure," according to a new report from the centrist Third Way think tank.

    Who knew the energy market could be so brutal?

  • Jerryskids||

    Has Trump rescinded that last-minute Obama directive allowing all those other departments to go on fishing expeditions in the NSA dragnets? I'd think Trump might be sensitive to the idea that an agency given broad powers to spy on terrorists might transfer that power to agencies more interested in things that have nothing to do with terrorism, like banking laws and campaign finance laws and SEC regulations, let's say.

    And how the hell did Obama get away with expanding the law that way in the first place? The fact that it wasn't slapped down immediately as an unconstitutional power grab suggests to me the law was so loosely written that it could mean anything at all and nothing at all when it comes to executive restraint, which isn't scary at all. You've got an agency tasked with keeping an eye on terrorists - or anybody else they think needs keeping an eye on and, oh yeah, anybody else can keep an eye on anybody they think needs keeping an eye on. too. What the hell kind of law is that? It's not a law, it's a blank check to do whatever the hell they please.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    What the hell kind of law is that?

    It's a legal concept called "FYTW."

  • retiredfire||

    The idea that presidents get to do anything other than in an emergency situation, after they know who will be following them into the WH is insane. Couple that with the sycophancy of the media, that should call them out on it, and we have a recipe for untold damage to the nation in the name of partisan sabotage.

  • anon||

    And how the hell did Obama get away with expanding the law that way in the first place?

    Fuck you, that's how.

  • renewableguy||

    The supreme court decided this.

    https://tinyurl.com/m5rr5pw

    Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency, 549 U.S. 497 (2007),[1] is a 5-4 U.S. Supreme Court case in which twelve states and several cities of the United States brought suit against the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to force that federal agency to regulate carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases (GHGs) as pollutants.

  • timbo||

    And there is no demand for energy the world over right now because China's shell economy is in the shitter.

    Roll back all BS enviro-regs and let the machines take over for the zombie asshole American worker.

    Technology and less government/less regs is deflationary which is good for the consumer.

    Cheap energy is deflationary which is good for the consumer.

  • Hank Phillips||

    The demand for energy collapsed when George Waffen Bush's asset forfeiture looting peaked and money fled banks and securities markets. Same thing happened from 1929 through 1932 when Republicans got giddy with excitement over the forcible seizure of bank accounts--until every bank in the nation closed shortly before FDRs first inauguration.

  • GILMORE™||

    Not coal miners

    (applause)

  • timbo||

    Ron,
    When someone changes the definition or makes up a definition of something, that should be your sign that it is total BS.

    The SCC is contrived by politicians to make climate change seem real by redefining the invented process.
    Kind of like when Al Gore had to change Global warming to climate change because it was not that hot?

    Why is the specious nature of the entire debate not kept on even footing with the supposed truth and consensus?

  • Redcard||

    Kind of like when Al Gore had to change Global warming to climate change because it was not that hot?

    No. Climate change encompasses anthropogenic global warming and then some. When better terms are available, people use them.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Bullshit. Timbo is exactly correct. First we had global warming, then we had climate change, and finally we tried climate "weirding" onky to have that last one fail and fall back to climate change.

  • Loss of Reason||

    Aww you are cute. See Global warming could be argued against because you know that means the global has to heat up. Now Climate change, that's the ticket because climate is always changing.

    *It's too hot - Climate change
    * We won't have snow in 2016 - climate change
    * We have too much snow in 2016 - climate change
    * Al Gore has a 4th chin - climate change

    It covers everything *

    *Except facts, actually models, real world effects, etc

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    Bingo!

    The Progressive Left has a way of latching onto environmental issues that might have some validity, and making them frauds. Oversimplification, overselling, refusing to backpedal in the face of new data (which leads to falsifying data, and then calling anyone who points that out evil names).

    Man mand warming may be a real thing (though the data I see is not convincing), but at this point we won't know because the Proggies poisoned the well.

  • renewableguy||

    CO2 is the cornerstone of the extent of the earth warming or cooling. We continue to pollute, the future generations pay the price. That is very clear and bullet proof in the science. There is only fossil fuel propaganda to say other wise.


    https://www.skepticalscience.com/rcp.php?t=3

    Table 4: from Moss et.al. 2010. Median temperature anomaly over pre-industrial levels and SRES comparisons based on nearest temperature anomaly, from Rogelj et.al. 2012

  • anon||

    HOLY SHIT THE TEMPERATURE IS CHANGING SOMEBODY DO SOMETHING

  • renewableguy||

    Stop polluting co2 and start long term sequestering of co2. CO2 is the thermostat of the earth.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Lying bullshit. Climate modeling began in the 1940s with Johnny Von Neumann et alii, and the dominant "greenhouse" gas then and now is and has always been water vapor. If the oceans could be looted for cash and parasitical sinecures, econazis would correctly name H2O as the main driver.

  • renewableguy||

    Hank Phillips|3.29.17 @ 10:14AM|#

    Lying bullshit. Climate modeling began in the 1940s with Johnny Von Neumann et alii, and the dominant "greenhouse" gas then and now is and has always been water vapor. If the oceans could be looted for cash and parasitical sinecures, econazis would correctly name H2O as the main driver.

    CO2 drives water vapor. Its time to accept reality.

  • waxliberty||

    Miseducated, at this point probably intentionally. Learn about Clausius–Clapeyron (practical concept of relative humidity) – water vapor's properties are different. If you try to "pollute" water vapor, it rains out. CO2 is the more powerful "thermostat" because it does not – and as the air warms, the same properties mean water vapor content (specific humidity) increases.

    You've probably heard this, and you clearly reject these conventional notions of chemistry and atmospheric physics, which is fine. How can you test (and therefore validate) your "alternative science" notions? Has this been done? This is how such discussions are resolved in the world of logic and empiricism.

  • Johnimo||

    Wrong! They switched away from "Global Warming" because we were able to make too much fun of the term, shivering on a cold Winter day and laughing about "global warming" when it was snowing. They just didn't like how easy it was for all of us to make fun of the term. That's the reason we will never quit using the term. Without global warming, or global cooling, there is no "climate change."

  • renewableguy||

    Wrong! They switched away from "Global Warming" because we were able to make too much fun of the term, shivering on a cold Winter day and laughing about "global warming" when it was snowing. They just didn't like how easy it was for all of us to make fun of the term. That's the reason we will never quit using the term. Without global warming, or global cooling, there is no "climate change."

    CO2 doesn't care what we call our warming earth. Physics does not understand us. It is us who must understand the physics. Why are we warming? CO2 and other ghg's.

  • waxliberty||

    Here's the drooling zombie claim again.

    In what year did this supposed "name change" happen?

    Scientific groups have offered FAQ pages on this nonsense for years...

  • Johnimo||

    "And then some"? What does that mean. They quit using "global warming" because we were having way too much fun laughing about the term on cold Winter days when we were shivering and record snows were piling up. Without global warming, or cooling for that matter, there is no climate change.

    Global warming is a much better term, everyone still uses it and will continue to do so. There is, and always has been -- in small increments -- global cooling and global warming. The argument now is to what degree and by what percentage mankind's activities are responsible for global warming.

    "Climate change" is just the left's way of trying to get us to quit making fun of them.

  • renewableguy||

    "Climate change" is just the left's way of trying to get us to quit making fun of them.

    You must think you are really hot shit. How we talk about Anthropogenic Global Warming doesn't change the reality one iota.

  • waxliberty||

    "Kind of like when Al Gore had to change Global warming to climate change because it was not that hot?"

    I understand this as a staple of ideological stories about the greenhouse problem, but is there any objective evidence in the real world that any such "name change" happened – or some evidence that it is "not that hot" – that could help persuade a more reason-based individual?

    The counter-arguments seem relatively obvious:
    * NAS titled its 1975 report "Understanding Climatic Change", in which it emphasized the need for better investments in observation systems (which eventually surfaced as tools like ARGO), highlighting that "A leading anthropogenic effect is the enrichment of the atmospheric CO2 content by the combustion of fossil fuels".
    * The IPCC was formed in 1988 to track this issue internationally. What do you think the two Cs might stand for?

    etc. etc.

    Today, references to both 'global warming' and 'climate change' are common in the scientific discussions, since they refer to related but distinct concepts (global warming is the observed accumulation of total energy in the system per understanding of earth's energy budget, climate change is related changes in climate features like habitat zones, loss of ice cover, impact to coral reef, etc.)

    It's difficult to have rational discussions when the topic is constantly inundated with these sorts of objectively nonsensical ideological narratives.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    You mean aside from the almost 20 year pause in warming "not hot?" Now a reasonable person might look at the satellite observations and the failed predictions of the GCMs, or a reasonable person would look at the non-mann'ed reconstructions showing we haven't even gone outside the envelope of the HCO.

    Are you such a reasonable person?

  • waxliberty||

    "You mean aside from the almost 20 year pause in warming "not hot?""

    Yes – I'm of course referring to exactly such talking points. The idea of a 20 year stoppage in warming is not remotely consistent with observations, even in the troposphere where the custom has been to cherry pick (known biased cool, pre-v4) RSS MSU observations to prop up such tiresome talking points – RSS currently shows in the neighborhood of 0.3°C warming in the total troposphere over 20 years, similar to surface measurements. ARGO and bathythermograph data shows upward of 10^23 joules of energy accumulated in the top 2,000 meters of the ocean. Etc.

    The fact that the earth was as warm or warmer than present in the past does not mitigate any of the negative impacts from rapid modern climate change – does not make the ~1/4 loss of cover of the Great Barrier Reef and other reefs globally in the last year any less dead, for example.

    Reasonable people form conclusions from data, they do not select or invent data to support a priori conclusions. We can skip further discussion – based on these talking points and logical fallacies alone you are unlikely to be the kind of reasonable person amenable to evidence-based logic.

  • waxliberty||

    "You mean aside from the almost 20 year pause in warming "not hot?""

    Yes – I'm of course referring to exactly such talking points. The idea of a 20 year stoppage in warming is not remotely consistent with observations, even in the troposphere where the custom has been to cherry pick (known biased cool, pre-v4) RSS MSU observations to prop up such tiresome talking points – RSS currently shows in the neighborhood of 0.3°C warming in the total troposphere over 20 years, similar to surface measurements. ARGO and bathythermograph data shows upward of 10^23 joules of energy accumulated in the top 2,000 meters of the ocean. Etc.

    The fact that the earth was as warm or warmer than present in the past does not mitigate any of the negative impacts from rapid modern climate change – does not make the ~1/4 loss of cover of the Great Barrier Reef and other reefs globally in the last year any less dead, for example.

    Reasonable people form conclusions from data, they do not select or invent data to support a priori conclusions. We can skip further discussion – based on these talking points and logical fallacies alone you are unlikely to be the kind of reasonable person amenable to evidence-based logic.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    0.3C in 20 years? Yeah, try again, sport. More like 0.13 and falling. ZOMG, 10^23 J in OHC. They must be boiling! Oh wait, that translates into a couple of hundredths of a degree. Are you going to claim that it's unprecedented? Care to explain the rapid surface warming from 1910-1940?

    And how do those measurements compare to CMIP5? Oops, we don't like to talk about that. In fact ECS and TCR estimates have been coming down in recent years. Even the IPCC removed its mean estimate while bizarrely claiming 95%(!) confidence that the preponderance of warming must be man-made. I don't know what branch of science you're in, but in my area we generally don't go upping our confidence estimates when our models demonstrate a lack of skill.

    Coral bleaching. My god, that has never happened before. And there's clearly no other potential cause for what happened in the GBF like, say, nutrient dumping. But wait, there's more. No trend in Palmer drought index. No trend in accumulated cyclone energy (well actually a downtrend). No trend in flood indices.

    Yeah, you're right, there's no point bringing any more facts to this discussion.

  • Hooha||

    DUNKED! Keep them honest, Skippy!

    "Cherry picked data", indeed. The projection is strong with the AGW cult.

  • renewableguy||

    As ocean heat content goes up, water vapor increases in the atmosphere adding more energy to our storms, hurricanes, tornadoes. Water vapor is called latent heat for a reason. WV is the higher energy form of water that is carried through the atmosphere. As the WV condenses, it releases its heat into whatever weather formation it is involved in. The Phillipines had record breaking hurricane wind speeds due to AGW stored ocean heat content that was very high. 200 mph sustained winds are due to human influence.

  • waxliberty||

    "Yeah, try again, sport"

    I know this was a popular talking point, so will not be let go easily if at all. But woodfortrees which you link still has RSS version 3 – known to suffer from spurious cooling bias due to orbital decay (taking measurements at a drifting time of day). Described by the owners of the data set in this paper and related blog post.

    It happens you can easily see this bias, introduced with the switch to the AMSU satellites around 1998, in the growing divergence from radiosonde in situ measurements over time (and can also be seen in divergence relative to surface temps):

    Here is the corrected RSSv4 for total troposphere.

    Sorry.

    (cont'd)

  • waxliberty||

    "ZOMG, 10^23 J in OHC. They must be boiling! Oh wait, that translates into a couple of hundredths of a degree"

    It's actually a ZOMG amount of energy (a billion atom bombs?). It is not evenly sequestered through the depth of the ocean as you wish to suggest, because heat concentrates near the top – it's closer to a full degree warming in the last century at the surface, which is where major impact happens. Acceleration of melting ice sheets for example is more of an energy question, where ice sheets are footed in shallow coastal water. As noted the temp change was enough to fry a quarter of the Great Barrier Reef in a single season last year, with remaining coral reef cover looking likely to collapse in coming decades as ocean heating continues. It's pretty clueless to describe such things as trivial. Ocean warming is also a major source of sea level rise from thermal expansion (independent of ice melt), contributing to economic damage from storm surge as seen during Hurricane Sandy, and so on.

    "Are you going to claim that it's unprecedented?"

    In timeframe of human civilization, warming and climate change on this scale (at this pace relative to biological and human adaptation) is unprecedented, of course.

    (2\4)

  • waxliberty||

    "Care to explain the rapid surface warming from 1910-1940?"

    Not very rapid relative to the modern run we've seen since 1980, but afaik the answer is the same: anthropogenic greenhouse increases in both methane and CO2 (warming believed to be somewhat suppressed from 40s to 70s by surge in anthropogenic aerosol cooling. Note the earlier rises in CO2 also came from forest clearing.)

    "And how do those measurements compare to CMIP5?"

    Observations are currently warmer than projected CMIP5 model means, per-decade warming trends have been pretty close matches – it's deeply irrational to find such results greatly comforting about the long term impact of greenhouse warming.

    "In fact ECS and TCR estimates have been coming down in recent years"

    No, they haven't. There remains a range of results given by different sorts of ECS estimates, consistent with the broad 1.5 to 4.5 range stated by the IPCC. Doubtless more transparent cherry picking here.

    "Even the IPCC removed its mean estimate while bizarrely claiming 95%(!) confidence that the preponderance of warming must be man-made"

    These two questions are unrelated (attribution of natural vs. anthropogenic forcings, vs. estimates of total system feedbacks); you are alternating between factual misstatements and logical missteps. The combination is ruinous.

    (3/4)

  • waxliberty||

    Fix link for CMIP5 model comparison.

  • waxliberty||

    Sigh. Need to remove the "br " bit that's getting appended.

  • waxliberty||

    "My god, that has never happened before"

    In fact, global bleaching on this scale was not observed prior to the late 20th century, and bleaching on the scale seen last year is in fact unprecedented, at least in our experience.

    Reaser et al 2000: "in the early to mid 1980s, however, coral reefs around the world began to experience large scale bleaching..."

    (and note use of the term "unprecedented", in cite below...)

    "And there's clearly no other potential cause for what happened in the GBF like, say, nutrient dumping"

    There are multiple causes of reef decline, but the current mass bleaching mortality is due to ocean heat / thermal stress:

    Hughes et al 2017: "The distinctive geographic footprints of recurrent bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef in 1998, 2002 and 2016 were determined by the spatial pattern of sea temperatures in each year. Water quality and fishing pressure had minimal effect on the unprecedented bleaching in 2016, suggesting that local protection of reefs affords little or no resistance to extreme heat."

    While you are now raising issues that are less trivially inane, you're still a long way from "reasonable".

    (4/4)

  • waxliberty||

    Page seems to be consistently adding the br tag to the end of links and breaking them; have to remove to load cited pages, apologies.

  • waxliberty||

    Here is an apples-to-apples ("forcing adjusted" – meaning running models against actually observed changes in CO2 concentration, solar forcing etc.) comparison of CMIP5 ensemble trends vs. observations, courtesy Schmidt head of NASA's climate work. As per the version linked above, observations currently above model means.

  • waxliberty||

    Here is an apples-to-apples ("forcing adjusted" – running models with actually observed greenhouse and solar forcings) comparison of CMIP5 ensemble projections against observations – as with the link above, observations currently running hotter than model means.

  • gclancy51||

    Your science has just given me a raging intellectual hard-on

  • Hank Phillips||

    Arguing with mystics is less remunerative than showing thermometer readings to rational entities. Here are the stations recording temperatures from 1920 through 2016: http://tinyurl.com/ljmhn54
    Real Climate Science gives the name of each station and the readings. The graph shows no global warming trend of any kind, misanthropomorphic or otherwise. Indeed, there were 2 billion people in 1927, so if warming were people-generated there would have to be an increase in temperature. Untampered data show the reductio is absolutely absurdum.

  • renewableguy||

    https://tinyurl.com/jmfwep8

    CO2 isn't the strongest driver, but it is the most consistent driver over time compared to other climate influences.

  • waxliberty||

    Common conspiracy theorist nonsense. Conspiracy bloggers like "Goddard" rarely inform their readers that the *net* effect of homogenization adjustments on the global temp record *decreases* the amount of observed global warming over the past century, it doesn't create it (or come close to this). You could ignore all homogenization adjustments and it would have no effect on any practical discussion of science or policy. However, it is obviously quite effective in fueling shallow science backlashes in the modern echo chambers of the internet.

  • NoVaNick||

    What about all the birdies chopped to bits by wind turbines-they should be thanking Scott Pruitt...

  • DanO.||

    This is like the worst TDS ever.

  • Pompey:何 Class Mothersmucker||

    Yeah, fun times.

  • NoVaNick||

    Well, the progs are against any and all fracking and nuclear, which are perhaps the best ways to cut CO2 emissions right now. Coal can certainly be burned more cleanly and with less CO2, but far cheaper to convert a power plant to gas-cars could be converted to run on natural gas too, even as hybrids, but the progs aren't interested in doable solutions because they want the icky little people to suffer for their carbon sin.

  • Roger Knights||

    If Obama & Holdren had been willing to settle for half a loaf, they could have had millions of trucks and cars converted to natural gas by now, instead of less than 10% as many converted to battery power.

  • waxliberty||

    Most global mitigation plans involve significant assumptions of emission reductions from carbon sequestration and storage, including on coal plants.

    The problem with fracking and natural gas has been significant (but poorly measured/monitored) methane leakage (e.g. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com.....7/abstract). But in general mitigation plans have leaned heavily on natural gas as a bridge energy source as well.

    Reasonably likely that investments in nuclear tech should be a larger part of global plans. Fukushima timing was unfortunate, despite lack of radiation deaths.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    The trend is largest in the central part of the country, but we cannot readily attribute it to any specific source type.

    Yes, it must be frac'ing even though your own reference says it's unattributable. What was that about a priori assumptions?

  • waxliberty||

    The fact that a particular study did not try to attribute something does not make it "unattributable". There are multiple studies.

    Methane Emissions in Texas Fracking Region 50% Higher Than EPA Estimates
    "Overall, the studies found that emissions of methane––a greenhouse gas at least 34 times more potent than carbon dioxide––in the Texas Barnett Shale were 50 percent higher than estimated by the Environmental Protection Agency… adds to a growing body of work on the amount of methane leaking from natural gas operations, the results are crucial for understanding whether natural gas will accelerate or delay the effects of climate change as it's increasingly used in place of coal … The scientists also used chemical "fingerprints" to distinguish the methane emitted by oil and gas production from the methane coming out of landfills and agricultural sources. One of these "fingerprints" is ethane, a light gas that's found only in fossil fuel-produced methane"

  • renewableguy||

    Battery cars are on their way. I drive an electric now. As they improve they will be cheaper to operate than an ICE vehicle.

  • Buddy Bizarre||

    Cheaper to operate, but more expensive to buy & more inconvenient to operate since recharging takes much longer than refueling with a liquid fuel.

  • renewableguy||

    Used electric cars are a great bargain right now. That's how I got mine. Most of the time your car sets still anyway. When that is taking place, you plug into a charger. Also I do not stop at a gas station whatsoever. I only charge up from home or at a public station. Also electric cars are far more efficient than an ICE car could ever be. Electric cars are about 2/3 cheaper to operate per mile.

  • MoreFreedom||

    "Well, the progs are against any and all fracking and nuclear ..."

    And they're also against coal and anything but wind (except the environmentalists who don't like birds being killed), solar, or biofuels (except the environmentalists again because it involves growing crops and actually isn't efficient).

    IMHO, reducing CO2 is wasting our resources. According to the latest models of the Sun, a new mini ice age is coming with a 60% reduction in solar output. Global cooling is far more harmful to humans than global warming.

    Should we believe the climate scientists (statist political hacks masquerading as scientists?) whose models don't work, or should we believe the scientists who model the sun?

    sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/07/150709092955.htm

    Let's not waste resources on climate models that don't work.

  • renewableguy||

    This source that looks at all science papers doesn't come up with your paper's conclusion.

    https://tinyurl.com/palktrl

    Projected Changes in Near-term Temperature
    The projected change in global mean surface air temperature
    will likely be in the range 0.3 to 0.7°C (medium confidence).

    It is more likely than not that the mean global mean surface
    air temperature for the period 2016–2035 will be more than
    1°C above the mean for 1850–1900, and very unlikely that it
    will be more than 1.5°C above the 1850–1900 mean (medium
    confidence). {11.3.6.3}

  • creech||

    Why would any utility now decide to build a new coal powered plant? In four or eight years, the policy could change once again and their investment would be stranded. Long range planning requires a reasonable expectation that policies won't change, or change a little, or caution requires a "wait and see" attitude.

  • Tony||

    Trump doesn't believe climate change is real and his spokesman couldn't even wrap his mind around the fact that environmental harm has economic consequences.

    So this should be really smart policy.

  • Scarecrow Repair & Chippering||

    Balanced out by proggies not recognizing that government itself has negative economic consequences, that bureaucracy itself has negative economic consequences, and the combination is truly dreadful.

    Governments spend $8T a year, 40% of GDP. When that much of an economy is in the hands of witless bureaucrats, you're in deep doo doo. But proggies think it should be 100%.

  • Tony||

    Why do you idiots talk like you're four years old?

  • Philadelphia Collins||

    Humans have been here for .004% of Earth's history. Peddle your cult elsewhere.

  • waxliberty||

    You are peddling elementary logical fallacies on a site called "reason.com".

    The fact that people have died of natural causes for eons before guns were invented does not prove that death by gunshot must be ruled out even in the presence of a smoking weapon and bullet holes.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Come back when you have said weapon and bullet holes.

  • waxliberty||

    A fine time to catch up with the last 150 years of physics.

    Infrared Radiation and Planetary Temperature
    "the top panel of Figure 3 compares global mean, annual-mean, clear-sky spectra of Earth observed by the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) satellite instrument with spectra calculated after the radiative transfer equations were applied to output of a climate model driven by observed surface temperatures. The agreement between the two is nearly perfect, which confirms the validity of the radiative transfer theory, the spectroscopy used to implement it, and the physics of the climate model."

    National Academy of Sciences and the U.K. Royal Society, "Climate Change: Evidence and Causes"
    etc.

  • SUPERHEAVYDOODY||

    The Skeptical Environmentalist. Go read it Tony. Things aren't nearly as bad as advertised.

  • waxliberty||

    If you rip the pages out and plant them in the sediment of the Coral Sea, will the coral reefs magically grow back?

    There are actually many, many books available which purport to 'debunk' prevailing science. The existence and popularity of such books is itself rather predictable.

    Is there a claim in the book that you think survives rational/empirical scrutiny, and does not require acceptance of unsupported conspiracy theory?

  • renewableguy||

    Too bad Bjorn Lomborg just isn't very credible.


    http://www.ucsusa.org/global_w.....NsaKjsrJPY

    These separately written expert reviews unequivocally demonstrate that on closer inspection, Lomborg's book is seriously flawed and fails to meet basic standards of credible scientific analysis. The authors note how Lomborg consistently misuses, misrepresents or misinterprets data to greatly underestimate rates of species extinction, ignore evidence that billions of people lack access to clean water and sanitation, and minimize the extent and impacts of global warming due to the burning of fossil fuels and other human-caused emissions of heat-trapping gases.

  • retiredfire||

    Everything Trump does is smart policy.

  • waxliberty||

    Even better: the *best* possible policy, beyond terrific. Literally gives everyone everything they want. Unprecedented.

  • Redcard||

    Huge disappointment that

    a. Obamacare was not repealed
    b. Coal jobs may not be coming back.

    Having thrown out all tedious regulations that made coal mine owners profitable, there would have been nothing better than reopening all those coal mines, and sending those "Coal miners for Drumpf" back into those mines to work their butts off.

    Assholes would not continue to mooch off welfare.

  • NoVaNick||

    FDR's WPA had them building sidewalks into the woods-kind of the same thing I guess. Send the Scots-Irish of Appalachia back into the coal mines this time around with a pick and let them mine all day. The gov't can then buy the coal and sit on it if they can't sell it.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Yes, we need to save those welfare dollars for buffet, gore, and the other green cronies!

  • renewableguy||

    Lets take fossil fuels off welfare then.

  • anon||

    Dude, fossil fuels are like 10935813851th on the welfare list. I'll be happy as fuck if we just stop bombing countries for no apparent reason.

  • renewableguy||

    Every country in the world just about subsidizes fossil fuels. Pay the real costs of fossil fuels including the external costs and they (fossil fuels) get their asses kicked in the open market..

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    The Obama administration devised the social cost of carbon (SCC) as a metric accounting for the effects on climate of any project that would result in the emissions of carbon dioxide.

    Was Obama and his administration staffers really this dumb? How did they define "any project" that would result in emissions of CO2. Because I'm pretty sure that... any project will result in the emissions of CO2.

  • waxliberty||

    This is a metric for tracking the carbon-related cost of any activity, so yes any substantial project would have some carbon cost associated with it. Basically this is aiming to quantify the negative externality to aid rational decision-making. Reviewing the basic economic concept of "negative externalities" is helpful here (though perhaps considered thoughtcrime by many commenters).

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    And precisely what is the value of a greener planet? How about them externalities?

    But then again you missed the point in the article where Ron noted that Obama intentionally ignored GAO practices and used artificially low discount rates(3% instead of 7%) and used purported global benefits (themselves quite far fetched) instead of local benefits to weigh cost/benefit, both of which are apparently a thoughtcrime to you.

  • renewableguy||

    2 to 3 percent is highly appropriate for long term cost of climate change that goes for centuries.

  • anon||

    2 to 3 percent is highly appropriate for long term cost of climate change that goes for centuries.

    And your evidence supporting this loosely asserted BS line is ...? Oh, that's right, doesn't exist. Thanks.

  • renewableguy||

    This is what I have based this off of.

    https://tinyurl.com/lv6rgoz

    When deciding how to discount future climate change impacts, value judgements are necessary (Arrow et al.., 1996b:130). IPCC (2001a:9) found that there was no consensus on the use of long-term discount rates in this area.[40] The prescriptive approach to discounting leads to long-term discount rates of 2-3% in real terms, while the descriptive approach leads to rates of at least 4% after tax - sometimes much higher (Halsnæs et al.., 2007:136).

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    "The use of a global social cost of carbon to estimate benefits means that agencies will adopt regulations that could cost Americans more than they receive in climate-related benefits."

    If Marin County "going green" is any lesson, all of these ideas are predicated on made up numbers and a lot of money changing hands, with no actual reductions in carbon, but it sure makes for a nifty flier.

  • renewableguy||

    As the cost of carbon goes up, then it is natural to switch to a cheaper energy based on market signals. As the consumers of goods become aware of carbon content in their goods, then they will prefer the goods that are better for the environment and the climate.

  • TimothyLane||

    Even if coal production doesn't go back up, at least getting rid of Obama's idiocy (or, worse, his deliberate assault on those areas that voted against him), at least the drain will stop. And all this is done chasing the chimera of global warming aka climate change -- which has degenerated into a pseudo-scientific cult in defense of a hoax.

  • mtrueman||

    "which has degenerated into a pseudo-scientific cult in defense of a hoax."

    Fail. You should have said 'Chinese hoax.' That's far worse than any white man's hoax.

  • waxliberty||

    Sobering to think this sort of hollow, vapid conspiracy theory thinking is not only widely accepted as legitimate, but is actually now politically in power and making decisions for global economic welfare.

  • renewableguy||

    The idiocy is that anthropogenic global warming is completely true. To run against that is to live with the consequences of increased global warming. Stumping for the short term gain of fossil fuels is the true idiocy of this administration.

  • DrZ||

    If greens are really that uptight about CO2 why do they not promote electrical generation by modern, modular nuclear generation?

    Instead, they are killing birds with windmills and covering sensitive wilderness land with solar panels.

    Given nuclear generation things like electric cars make sense. Otherwise it's a fool's fantasy thinking you make a difference owning one.

    I guess in the green mind, you have to destroy the environment in order to save it.

  • renewableguy||

    Nuclear does have its problems. The biggest killer of birds is tall buildings, should we take those down?

  • mtrueman||

    " The biggest killer of birds is tall buildings,"

    No, birds are blessed with a similar respiratory system as humans and suffer from similar ailments. The toxins released by burning fossil fuels are responsible for more human and avian death and suffering than your tall buildings and wind mills. Not that you'd know that by reading the hacks and shills Reason publishes.

  • mtrueman||

    "why do they not promote electrical generation by modern, modular nuclear generation?"

    They are more concerned over nuclear waste etc than CO2.

  • renewableguy||

    quote: But what about the climate? By one calculation implementing the Obama administration's Paris climate pledge fully would reduce the future increase in average global temperature by 0.031 degree Celsius by 2100. Fulfilling all of the Paris pledges together would reduce future temperatures in 2100 by 0.17 degree Celsius. On the other hand, more robust economic growth will produce the wealth and new technologies that will help future generations to cope better with whatever future climate change occurs. unquote:

    https://www.skepticalscience.com/graphics.php?g=88

    If you look at the graph of possible future outcomes of temperature, low climate sensitivity gives us 1.5*C and high sensitivity gives us 5.5*C. Turning the temp down by the end of the century is the desired outcome while going up 1.5*C to 5.5*C destabilizes our world society in several ways. If it is really unknown what the effects of climate will be, then why is this administration strangling the reseearch process? If we really don't know, we should be increasing the research to understand deeper the process of climate change.

  • Greg F||

    More model nonsense. Observational studies puts the upper/lower end from about 1.6C to under 1C. An observational study is one where the results are calculated from real observations, not some dubious output of a computer game.

    Further, as the theory goes increase in temperature from CO2 increases evaporation which increases water vapor (the major green house gas). The theory rests on the premise that as temperature rises relative humidity stays constant (meaning more water vapor). Observations have shown relative humidity has not remained constant and has in fact fallen, thus the so called positive feedback appears to be missing.

    One more point. The theory also predicts a lower tropical troposphere hot spot. Observations have not found any hot spot. To paraphrase Dr. Feynman, 'when your model fails to replicate the data your model is wrong'.

    I would suggest you expand your reading list past the skeptical science web propaganda.

  • mtrueman||

    "An observational study is one where the results are calculated from real observations, not some dubious output of a computer game."

    They go into the future and 'observe the climate?' Without a computer, even?

  • Greg F||

    They go into the future and 'observe the climate?' Without a computer, even?

    No you dumb ass. Observations are from the past to the present.

  • mtrueman||

    And somehow this makes their predictions about the climate some 80 odd years from now worth listening to? Yjeir calculations are simple enough to be done without the aid of a computer?

    Climate scientists have been predicting rising temperatures and sea levels for years now and that's what the observations bear out. It's not a failure of the theory. It's an infant science, and its grasp on the complexities of the earth, its atmosphere and its oceans is not firm. With more research this should change.

  • anon||

    Climate scientists have been predicting rising temperatures and sea levels for years now and that's what the observations bear out.

    Then surely you'll have no problem pointing me to that model with even a modest 50% accuracy of prediction:performance. Because I've been looking for almost 15 years now, and every single prediction I've seen has been wildly inaccurate when review time comes up. And yeah, if your "models" turn out to actually be worse than me guessing almost randomly, I'm not really going to give a shit about your model.

  • renewableguy||

    https://tinyurl.com/hj6olwg

    hile there are uncertainties with climate models, they successfully reproduce the past and have made predictions that have been subsequently confirmed by observations.

    If you can get over your bullheadedness, read through the article and then get back to me.

  • mtrueman||

    "Then surely you'll have no problem pointing me to that model "

    I'm not talking about a model. I'm talking about longstanding predictions of increasing warmth and sea levels being borne out by observations. What more do you want from a scientist?

  • renewableguy||

    Greg F|3.28.17 @ 7:23PM|#

    More model nonsense. Observational studies puts the upper/lower end from about 1.6C to under 1C. An observational study is one where the results are calculated from real observations, not some dubious output of a computer game.

    When water vapor increases in the atmosphere, you get more warming. No way around it. The models can simulate this very very well. This is clearly where climate denial easily loses.

  • Greg F||

    When water vapor increases in the atmosphere, you get more warming. No way around it. The models can simulate this very very well. This is clearly where climate denial easily loses.

    Except water vapor also gathers together in a thing we call clouds. If you have ever flown you would have noticed the top of clouds are quite bright. They reflect sunlight away thus they can cause cooling. Even the IPCC admits cloud simulations errors are on the order of 10's of watts per square meter and are a major source of uncertainty. On top of that, climate models grids are far to course to model water processes (usually 1x1 degree). So essentially you know nothing about the models. It is doubtful you have every read the IPCC reports (and I don't mean the summary for policy makers) or any of the actual science.

  • renewableguy||

    Cloud feedback so far looks positive. Clouds are not coming to human rescue. We must handle this with open eyes and not cloud over with our preconceived thoughts.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cloud_feedback

    The net radiative feedback is the sum of the warming and cooling feedbacks; the executive summary states "The sign of the net radiative feedback due to all cloud types is less certain but likely positive. Uncertainty in the sign and magnitude of the cloud feedback is due primarily to continuing uncertainty in the impact of warming on low clouds." They estimate the cloud feedback from all cloud types to be +0.6 W/m2°C (with an uncertainty band of −0.2 to +2.0), and continue, "All global models continue to produce a near-zero to moderately strong positive net cloud feedback."[17]

  • renewableguy||

    Water vapor mixed with co2 is a strong combination for warming or cooling the earth. Right now we are in the warming direction. I don't think there is a negative feedback coming to take us back down below 1*C. Wb>e are marching forward strictly based on our carbon pollution.

  • anon||

    When water vapor increases in the atmosphere, you get more warming.

    Obviously we need to ban water.

  • renewableguy||

    This is about your level of rebuttal all the way through. Soooooo do you think your opinion of AGW is going to change reality.?

  • waxliberty||

    "Observational studies puts the upper/lower end from about 1.6C to under 1C"

    No; observational or "instrumental" studies find a wide range of results consistent with the IPCC's 1.5 to 4.5 degrees warming per doubling.

    "An observational study is one where the results are calculated from real observations, not some dubious output of a computer game"

    There is not really such a thing as a simple observational study here in the way you seem to believe – application of physical models and statistical computations (i.e. climate modeling) are required to estimate forcings in the first place for such studies.

    (1/2)

  • waxliberty||

    "One more point. The theory also predicts a lower tropical troposphere hot spot. Observations have not found any hot spot"

    This is not a specific prediction of greenhouse warming theory, it is a general prediction of conventional views of how convection works and atmospheric warming in response to *any* source of surface warming.

    There is also less of any interesting issue here after additional work and improvements in satellite observations, e.g. Santer et al 2016, "Comparing tropospheric warming in climate models and satellite data"
    "We address long-standing concerns regarding discrepancies in modeled and observed vertical profiles of warming in the tropical atmosphere. We show that amplification of tropical warming between the lower and mid- to upper troposphere is now in close agreement in the average of 37 climate models and in one updated satellite record."

  • Ron Bailey||

    r: So what would the damages of essentially unchecked climate change be in 2100? All such projections are fraught, but in his latest study Yale economist William Nordhaus uses his updated DICE2016R integrated assessment model to calculate that world GDP would rise to $867 trillion (2010$) in 2100, up from $75 trillion now. "Including all factors, the final estimate is that the damages are 2.1% of global income at 3 °C warming and 8.5% of income at 6 °C warming," notes Nordhaus. In his worse case scenario of a 6 °C warming, people living in 2100 would have to eke out an existence on just $793 trillion instead of $867 trillion.

    With regard to your point about research, I largely agree but I worry about the objectivity of the peer-review process in climate science.

  • mtrueman||

    "Including all factors,"

    I think the good professor might have left some factors out. It is only a model, after all. From an economist.

    "With regard to your point about research, ..."

    ... any scientist can publish on the web without worrying about peer-review. Same applies to non-scientists. I worry much more about lack of objectivity in decisions on funding.

  • Ron Bailey||

    m: Before you dis it, you should know that Nordhaus' DICE model was one of three used by the Obama administration in its calculation of the social cost of carbon. Just saying.

  • mtrueman||

    I realize they have to come up with some number to work with, and hey, global GDP, why not? I'm betting that something or maybe several somethings are going to happen between now and 2100 that will throw the professor's figures for a loop.

  • Ron Bailey||

    r: The latest calculations by Yale economist William Nordhaus using his integrated assessment model projects world gdp in 2100 as being $867 trillion (2010$) in 2100, up from $75 trillion. He adds, "Including all factors, the final estimate is that the damages are 2.1% of global income at 3 °C warming and 8.5% of income at 6 °C warming." I completely recognize that all such projections are fraught, but his model does project at 6 °C warming that folks living in 2100 would have to eke out an existence on just $793 trillion instead of $867 trillion.

    With regard to research, I largely agree with you but I do worry about the objectivity and transparency of peer-review in climate science.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    So you are arguing for more government funded research?

  • AD-RtR/OS!||

    But....but....The Left tells us incessantly that if it just saves one (job) it's worth it.

  • renewableguy||

    There are more jobs in renewable energy than there is in fossil fuels.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Which is why it is more expensive and always will be.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    First, bullshit. AWEA in 2016 claimed 88,000 jobs for wind power, which is assuredly exaggerated. Exxon alone employs 83,000 people.

    Second, bullshit.
    BLS shows 155k employed in fossil fuel extraction and another 180k in refining and manufacturing. Solar and wind don't even rate their own breakout at BLS. "Engine, turbine, and power transmission equipment manufacturing" rates a total of 53k of which a small fraction is likely wind turbines.

    Third, even assuming you're talking about a per kWh basis, that simply means that so called renewables will always be more expensive than reliable energy sources.

  • renewableguy||

    Fossil fuels are laying off and renewable energy jobs are increasing. It is expected to continue on into the future.


    http://grist.org/business-tech.....-combined/

    There are more jobs in renewable energy than in oil, gas, and coal combined
    By Heather Smith on May 31, 2016

    Worldwide, employment in green energy grew 5 percent in 2015, to 8.1 million jobs, while the slump in oil prices that began in the fall of 2015 eliminated an estimated 350,000 oil jobs across the planet.

  • Greg F||

    There are more jobs in renewable energy than in oil, gas, and coal combined.

    All the more reason the printing industry should go back to good old fashion type setting. Think of all the jobs it would create.

  • renewableguy||

    Greg F|3.28.17 @ 9:44PM|#

    All the more reason the printing industry should go back to good old fashion type setting. Think of all the jobs it would create.

    Fossil fuels are increasing in costs over time and renewable energy is coming down. It is healthier, cheaper and a more secure more form of energy.

  • wareagle||

    and yet, renewables are < 10% of energy used. More secure based on what? Between the bird strikes and the NIMBY people, there is not a widespread call for solar farms or turbine building.

    https://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.php?id=427&t=3

  • renewableguy||

    (((((wareagle|3.28.17 @ 11:01PM|#

    and yet, renewables are < 10% of energy used. More secure based on what? Between the bird strikes and the NIMBY people, there is not a widespread call for solar farms or turbine building)))))

    Hawaii will have 100% renewable energy by 2040 and by law 2045. When you produce all your energy home grown, you depend on one but yourself. That is energy independence. Fossil fuels doing that for us is a myth. It will never happen.

  • Greg F||

    Fossil fuels are increasing in costs over time and renewable energy is coming down. It is healthier, cheaper and a more secure more form of energy.

    Please stop with the ignorant assertions. Renewable energy is not cheaper, if it was it wouldn't require the huge subsidies. It is also not dispatchable. It therefore does not have the equal value per unit of energy. In some cases its actually has a negative value. It cannot displace fossil fuels because it is intermittent. Without traditional generation backup it is useless.

    It doesn't take a genius to know if your power goes out for a few seconds everything shuts down. To avoid that you have to have generation that is reliable every second of every day. Renewable's cannot provide this reliability and never will without some form of storage which doesn't exist. Comparing traditional generation with renewable's is apples and oranges.

  • renewableguy||

    Comparing traditional generation with renewable's is apples and oranges.

    That is why renewable energy is better. There is no comparison between the two. Hawaii's governor has a degree in electrical engineering and by law now Hawaii will reach 100% renewable energy by 2040. Law says to get it done by 2045. Go down there and just you give them a piece of your mind. I don't think they are going to listen to you.

  • Greg F||

    LMAO ... the laws of physics will repeal the Hawaiian law. You have no understanding how power is generated and the grid operates. I would buy stock in portable generators going to Hawaii cus they are going to buy a lot of them.

  • renewableguy||

    Greg F|3.29.17 @ 12:34AM|#

    LMAO ... the laws of physics will repeal the Hawaiian law

    The governor of Hawaii is an electrical engineer. I've got my money on him easily. Hawaii has some of the most expensive electricity in the world. It is jus teconomically wise for them to get off of fossil fuels. You are just starting to make yourself look foolish.

  • mtrueman||

    The grid, though, what about the GRID!

  • anon||

    and by law now Hawaii will reach 100% renewable energy by 2040.

    Surely if it's LAW it must be so!

    AHHAHAHAHA

    You must be new here.

  • renewableguy||

    anon|3.29.17 @ 2:56AM|#

    and by law now Hawaii will reach 100% renewable energy by 2040.

    Surely if it's LAW it must be so!

    AHHAHAHAHA

    You must be new here.

    You must be locked into one way of thinking. Go look it up. They will be without fossil fuels and they will be better off without them.

  • ace_m82||

    They will be without fossil fuels and they will be better off without them.

    Just like Spain in the last 10 years! That went well.

  • renewableguy||

    Spain had economy problems. They have a great sunny region to take advantage of for renewable energy.

  • ace_m82||

    ^And above you can see this guy not understanding cause and effect. If they have a great spot for renewable energy and it still causes them "economy problems", then why would you think it would work better in other places?

    But of course, you are a government worshiper who thinks a central planner can "make the economy better".

    "The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design." F. A. Hayek

  • renewableguy||

    ^And above you can see this guy not understanding cause and effect. If they have a great spot for renewable energy and it still causes them "economy problems", then why would you think it would work better in other places?

    I see no evidence that renewable energy is the reason for the Spanish downturn in the economy. The whole world had to deal with this.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_Spain
    Following the financial crisis of 2007–08, the Spanish economy's plunged into recession, entering a cycle of negative macroeconomic performance. Compared to the EU's and US. average, the Spanish economy entered recession later (the economy was still growing by 2008), but stayed there for longer. The economic boom of the 2000s was reversed, leaving over a quarter of Spain's workforce unemployed by 2012. In aggregated terms, the Spanish GDP contracted by almost 9% during the 2009-2013 period.[20]

  • Gilbert Martin||

    Just wait until Lockheed Martin gets it's fusion reactor working and puts them all out of business.

  • renewableguy||

    Fusion is a tough nut to crack. That is a long ways off.

  • Hooha||

    They just spin bald-faced lies out of thin air on the spot now. Between the Green Cult, snowflakes, and the SJW's, I'm seriously beginning to doubt that a culture without socially-acceptable ass-whuppings is a terribly wise idea.

  • renewableguy||

    Hooha|3.28.17 @ 9:18PM|# They just spin bald-faced lies out of thin air on the spot now. Between the Green Cult, snowflakes, and the SJW's,

    Actually the fossil fuel industry is scared stiff. If they were smart, they would invest in renewable energy.

  • Greg F||

    Actually the fossil fuel industry is scared stiff. If they were smart, they would invest in renewable energy.

    A car that worked as intermittently as renewable's would be essentially worthless. Alternative energy is not dispatchable and has little to sometimes negative value.

  • renewableguy||

    A car that worked as intermittently as renewable's would be essentially worthless. Alternative energy is not dispatchable and has little to sometimes negative value.

    Solar has peak load value. It produces energy when we want it the most. The cost of utility storage is coming down allowing renewable energy to be stored and used later. Islands in the world have already gone 100% renewable energy and need no fossil fuels today. This gives them energy independence and savings in the pockets from the high price of fossil fuels.

  • anon||

    It produces energy when we want it the most.

    Every trucker in the US would like to register their disagreement with you. Also Bartenders, waiters/waitresses, IT admin, or pretty much anyone that's ever had a job.

    When you flunk out of college in 6 years you'll learn the job isn't done just because the sun happened to have set 5 hours ago.

  • renewableguy||

    So the bartenders and waitresses are your support system? Renewable energy makes money. Where have you been. There are more people making a living in renewable energy than in fossil fuels. How about evidence right in front of your nose rather than your preconceived ideas.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    And there can be even more jobs in paying people to dig holes and fill them back up again.

  • anon||

    Everyone knows you dig holes at night! They fill themselves back up during the day when they're wanted most.

  • renewableguy||

    You keep digging your hole deeper and don't know how to get out.

  • chemjeff||

    Oh good Lord.
    Can we get a reasonable discussion somewhere between WE'RE ALL GONNA BURN UP and IT'S ALL A BIG HOAX? Pretty please?

  • Jayburd||

    HIDE THE DECLINE! Is that reasonable enough?

  • anon||

    Sure. Just let me know when you can accurately predict the weather 24 hours in advance (fuck, I'll even give you a 25% margin of error, just to make it fun), and I'll start considering what you have to say about what the weather's going to be 75 years from now.

  • renewableguy||

    lol!!!!!! You don't know the difference between weather and climate.

  • Jayburd||

    HIDE THE DECLINE!

  • Migrant Log Chipper||

    I see the watermelons are out again tonight......

  • renewableguy||

    So why is Reason drawing deniers of climate change out of the woodwork? The science of climate change is bullet proof. How is it that those that doubt are trying to reason their way or at the extreme hate those tell the truth of climate change?

  • anon||

    How does your religion blind you to reality?

    AGW is another cult, just like the people that believed we were going to freeze to death in 70's, starve to death in the 60's, and Manhattan was supposed to be buried in shit at the turn of last century.

    Your fantasies never become reality because humans are the absolute best species in the universe (that we know of) at adapting. It's a primal function that doesn't give a fuck about whatever the latest cry for OPM is. Humans always have and will (for the foreseeable future) continue to adapt.

  • renewableguy||

    We have to adapt and we also have to get to know why we have to adapt. CO2 is a stable ghg that warms the earth as it increases. We are warming for no other reason than human polluted co2.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Arguing with mystics is less remunerative than showing thermometer readings to rational entities. Here are the stations recording temperatures from 1920 through 2016: http://tinyurl.com/ljmhn54
    Real Climate Science gives the name of each station and the readings. The graph shows no global warming trend of any kind, misanthropomorphic or otherwise. Indeed, there were 2 billion people in 1927, so if warming were people-generated there would have to be an increase in temperature. Untampered data show the reductio is absolutely absurdum.

  • mtrueman||

    "The graph shows no global warming trend of any kind, "

    These stations are all located within the same country. How could they possibly show any global trend?

    "so if warming were people-generated ..."

    It's not though. The theory is that the burning of fossil fuels releases heat-trapping gases into the atmostphere.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Observe the appeals to faith and authority.

  • renewableguy||

    If you are denying global warming, then that is a faith process on very incomplete and also falsified data. You either have blind faith in your sources or you are out and out lying.

    Science sorts out what is a fact. The climate science is a mature science field now.

  • geo||

    Don't underestimate coal.

    "That is unlikely for two reasons: automation and cheap fracked natural gas."

    "Fracked" is not a real word. It was made up by environmentalists to sound like fuc*ed. There is no k in fracture. The proper word is frac.

    Coal is still a significantly cheaper source of energy than natural gas. The cost of a ton of coal delivered averages about $46. The energy equivalent of natural gas at $3 per mcf would cost $72. Coal still is almost 40% cheaper than natural gas. There are two reasons natural gas has been replacing coal. First, and most important, it can fuel quickly started power plants that supply peak power to the grid, and second, the EPA made it virtually impossible to repair or build coal fired power plants in about 2009. They didn't prohibit them, they just made it so hard to get a permit, even to make large repairs, that it forced the power companies to stop building coal fired plants. Building plants like the recent one in Texas that will burn coal and sequester carbon dioxide in old oil fields has potential to still be cheaper than natural gas. Coal is not dead.

  • renewableguy||

    Carbon sequestration is part of the process and renewable energy kicks their ass big time.

  • bvandyke||

    Ok.....

    I can agree that human affect the environment. By definition, when we breath, start our car, etc. we "affect" the environment (good or bad).

    Here is my question to the zealots: If, as you say, AWG is a fact and the science is proven and sound, what percentage of climate change is directly related to humans? If by 2100 the global mean temp rises by 1.7 degree Celsius, what percentage can be directly attributed to human activity? 100%, 50%, 5%, 0.00004%?

    If you respond (most will not), respond with link to actual science and data supporting your answer. I can't find it, I've looked.

  • renewableguy||

    Here is my question to the zealots: If, as you say, AWG is a fact and the science is proven and sound, what percentage of climate change is directly related to humans? If by 2100 the global mean temp rises by 1.7 degree Celsius, what percentage can be directly attributed to human activity? 100%, 50%, 5%, 0.00004%?

    100%

  • Jayburd||

    Is that one of Mike's "tricks"?

  • renewableguy||

    https://tinyurl.com/mgg2adw

    natural causes are cooling and human pollution is the reason we are warming.

  • ace_m82||

    Natural causes do whatever they want. Humans do what they can.

    Either way you look at it, IF (a big if) humans cause global warming (and yes, we note you went back to the old term), it will be much cheaper to deal with the warming than to try to stop it.

    http://www.climatedepot.com/20.....r-by-2100/

  • renewableguy||

    Climate depot is a fossil fuel source. Marc Morano is a first class denier.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Bailey's scientific credibility is discarded in the first paragraph. When Petr Beckmann was on the Reason board he pointed out that climate superstition relied on switching thermometers. Tony Heller at Real Climate Science recently graphed US temperatures using only thermometer stations that already existed in 1920, and the result is clearly a downward trend. The data are from NOAA, and Tony gives away an app you can use to mine the data yourself. Woodfortrees.org allows anyone with a dataset to graph it, so this exposure of deliberate fraud on the part of Climate Cassandras is patently reproducible. See: http://tinyurl.com/mdg86zs

  • renewableguy||

    I find Ron Bailey quite knowledgeable about his subject.

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/pl.....2017/trend

    Over time, co2 wins over all.

  • MoreFreedom||

    Many of Reason's writers are quite negative regarding Trump. As a long time libertarian, and contributor to Reason, I say give Trump a chance. As Bailey points out, he's saving us money.

    As for global warming, I'm not worried. I'm more worried about Global Cooling which is far more harmful to humans than temperatures that are a tiny little bit warmer.

    sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/07/150709092955.htm

  • renewableguy||

    https://tinyurl.com/zw6cbbl

    C.B.O. Analysis: Republican Health Plan Will Save Money but Drive Up the Number of Uninsured

    Its one of those cold kind of ways to govern.

  • Trakar||

    There are only two ways to lower the cost of energy, government control, or production that exceeds demand, neither of these are generally considered politically or economically viable in the US and the current time.

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