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OpenMarket: April 2009

  • What would it take to reduce CO2 levels to 350 ppm?

    April 2, 2009
    "Climate 350"--for 350 parts per million (ppm) of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere--is fast becoming the new mantra of Gorethodox believers in climate doom and coercive energy rationing. Columbia University will host a conference on the topic next month, featuring NASA scientist James Hansen as the keynote speaker. But as Newsweekreporter Sharon Begley points out, just to limit atmospheric concentrations to 450 ppm, nations would have to build 10,000 new nuclear power plants--one every other day from now until 2050--plus a mind boggling 1 million solar roof top panels per day from now until 2050. Even then, 450 ppm is attainable only if global energy efficiency improves by a whopping 500%, population grows only to 9 billion (instead of 10 billion or 11 billion), and global...
  • Senate votes to kill cap-and-trade?

    April 2, 2009
    Well, not overtly, but the Senate voted 89-8 for an amendment to the Fiscal year 2010 budget resolution (S. Con Res. 13), introduced by Sen. John Thune (R-SD), which would prohibit any future greenhouse gas cap-and-trade initiative from increasing gasoline prices and electricity rates for U.S. households and businesses.   As University of Colorado professor Roger Pielke, Jr. points out, "The entire purpose of cap and trade is in fact to increase the costs of carbon-emitting sources of energy, which dominate US energy consumption. The Thune Amendment thus undercuts the entire purpose of cap and trade." In other words, it is impossible to vote for the Thune amendment and support cap-and-trade and be consistent, candid, or straight with...
  • Obama Follows in Hoover's Footsteps

    April 1, 2009
    During the Great Depression, Herbert Hoover damaged the economy, and impoverished the American people, with costly, artificial attempts to stimulate the economy through increased government spending, financed by heavy taxes like the Revenue Act of 1932. Obama is now doing the same thing through his proposed $2 trillion cap-and-trade carbon tax. That tax fulfills his ...
  • LibertyWeek 36: We Go Green

    April 1, 2009
    Hosts Richard Morrison and Cord Blomquist join Michelle Minton in welcoming you to LibertyWeek 36: The Green Episode. We begin our environmental adventure with an update on the high cost of renewable energy and the good news from the coal laboratory. We then pass on advice for drinking green in Beer News and celebrate the recent observance of Human Achievement Hour. This brings us to the featured interview with our distinguished colleague and author Steve Milloy – where we explore his new book Green Hell: How Environmentalists Plan to Ruin Your Life and What You Can Do to Stop Them and its targets, from the Audubon Society to Zero Population Growth....
  • Energy bill -- "first shot" in carbon trade war?

    April 1, 2009
    In the wake of the release of the Waxman-Markey energy bill, many commenters have pointed to the drastic restrictions on domestic energy use to address greenhouse gas emissions, while some, like CEI, have pointed to the huge economic costs that would result -- costs that would be paid for by consumers and in terms of reduced manufacturing and jobs.  Few have noted a further economic consequence -- the possible disruption of the world trading system because of the bill's endorsement of carbon border taxes on imports from countries that don't have an energy-repressive regime.  Here's what CEI's Iain Murray has to say about that...
  • Bill Giving D.C. a Congressman Is Unconstitutional

    April 1, 2009
    A bill that would give residents of Washington, D.C. a Congressman is unconstitutional, lawyers in the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel concluded. But politics overrode law as Attorney General Eric Holder, who has a contempt for constitutional safeguards, ignored their conclusion and decided instead to declare it constitutional. The bill was passed in slightly different versions by both Houses of Congress on largely party-line votes, although...
  • Virginia Postrel on Her Own Brush with Cost-Effective Drug Research

    April 1, 2009
    One letter writer argues that Herceptin was a poor example because "Multiple cost-effectiveness analyses have shown that, despite its high cost, Herceptin is both effective and cost-effective." That, of course, was Postrel's point. She replies, "its very cost-effectiveness makes it such a striking example. New Zealand chose to ration the drug (and not to cover it at all for early-stage cancer until July 2007) despite its significant benefits."

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