Ghost of Kyoto: Government Control by Any Means

Commentary, Environment, Frontier Centre

Paul Driessen and Dr. Willie Soon‘s recent article published by the Frontier Centre (among many organizations) identifies the growing conflict as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) tries to take control of energy in Texas.

The EPA is manipulating a completely unnecessary and scientifically unjustified control of energy and must be stopped. Fortunately, the Texas case is currently stayed by a court order, but the EPA’s history is to do anything to achieve their goal.
There can’t be enough articles about what EPA is doing because it is a serious threat to freedom.
The most ignorant scientific statement imaginable
EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson said, “This is a major step forward in our effort to address the greenhouse gases polluting our skies,” the most ignorant scientific statement imaginable. It’s made because her agency has manipulated the legal and scientific process to get CO2 falsely identified as a toxic substance.
The step is one more in stifling the US economy and promoting more government control using CO2. The final steps went into effect with the New Year. The Obama Administration is bypassing the people’s representatives and shifting power to bureaucracies. A historical review is necessary to understand how the EPA plan has evolved.
Kyoto; Past And Present
The Kyoto Protocol was formalized at Conference of the Parties (COP) 3 to achieve, ”stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.” It stumbled immediately. It required ratification by countries producing 55 percent of the world’s greenhouse gases. After the US Senate voted 95—0 in July 1997 against signing the Protocol, Russia became the critical hold out. Without their participation the Protocol expires. Putin was persuaded by European countries that threatened denial of support for Russian participation in the World Trade Organization (WTO).
Many nations ratified with no plan to implement. It was necessary to have legislative approval within each country to implement. Only then were they accountable through fines and sanctions to the UN. This created a problem when the European Community agreed on behalf of individual nations some of who now say they will not meet CO2 reduction targets. However, there is an exit strategy, because Kyoto Protocol Article 27 states: “At any time after three years from the date on which this Protocol has entered into force for a Party [2005], that Party may withdraw from this Protocol by giving written notification to the Depositary.” Regardless, the Protocol expires at the end of 2012 and that is why Copenhagen (COP 15) was critical.
Leaked emails from the Climatic Research Unit in November 2009 undermined Copenhagen completely as COP 16 in Cancun proved. Attendance at Cancun was down 82% and the pretense about reducing greenhouse gases was exposed. It was about redistribution of wealth by making developed nations pay for their sins of causing warming with CO2 and transferring that money to developing nations.
International Emissions Trading, more commonly known as carbon credits was implemented to achieve redistribution. They evolved from resistance of the US to Kyoto which wanted credit for CO2 removed from the atmosphere through planting trees and other activities. Ironically, it was rejected because they didn’t know how much CO2 trees removed—this problem of determining meaningful values for CO2 pervades the entire story. Carbon credits prove everything was about equalization of wealth because no CO2 reductions would occur. You simply bought carbon credits from those who were not developed enough to use their quota.
Divergent Evolution
Two different streams developed as people exploited opportunities. One was making money from selling carbon credits; the other was political control by legislating against those who produced CO2. Al Gore initially combined both as he used his political position to make money. A 1997 White House meeting with Ken Lay of Enron and Lord Browne of BP determined the structure of the CO2 legislation and division of the market. Gore also formed and chaired Generation Investment Management (GIM) that benefited from carbon credits.
Maurice Strong made money, but after setting up the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and Kyoto he disappeared into the political shadows. He was on the Board of the Chicago Climate Exchange (CCX) designed to trade credits which was set up with money from the George Soros funded Joyce Foundation.
Carbon credits have collapsed, failing like any pyramid scheme without a product, but like all such schemes those in early made money. The problem with carbon credits was those who built the pyramid were also in control of the science and the politics. They controlled their value. Actually, there was no real value, but they were able to maintain the charade. As Investors Business Daily notes, ”As the case for global warming and cap-and-trade has collapsed, so too has the market that was to exploit this manufactured crisis for fun and profit. The climate-change bubble has burst.”
Cap and Trade in the US was in a death spiral even before Climategate. The Senate rejected it in 1997 because it would cost jobs and damage the economy. It was justified for revenue reasons, as it is the experience of all who’ve tried implementation. In his first budget Obama estimated a yield of over $500 billion dollars, but that will not occur. No matter, it was a bonus to his goal of eliminating fossil fuels, weakening the US economy and achieving government control. He had already put in place the actual strategy, which is to achieve control through administrative rules.
Control By Hook Or Crook
A lawsuit by Massachusetts charged EPA with failing to control the pollutant CO2 thus creating endangerment. EPA lost, some argue deliberately. The case went to the Supreme Court, but it was after their ruling that the political deceptions deepened. The EPA misinterpreted the ruling. Lisa Jackson wrote that, “the United States Supreme Court held three years ago that greenhouse gases are air pollution and are subject to regulation under the Clean Air Act.” That wasn’t the ruling.The machinations were incisively analyzed in CanadaFreePress (CFP) in March.
EPA followed procedures and entertained challenges to their actions. They rejected them quickly in a Technical Report based on the IPCC Reports.
Before the election Obama said, “Under my plan of a cap-and-trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.” He knew it wasn’t about cap and trade, but the EPA, which now has all the regulations in place. They’ve identified emitters who have to report on 2010 CO2 production levels as the basis for assigning penalties. “The EPA estimates that this program will cover 85% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.” “If a facility exceeds the emissions threshold of 25,000 tons of carbon dioxide equivalence during any given year, the facility owner or manager will be required to report annual emissions electronically to the EPA each year until the building can reduce its emissions below 25,000 tons for 5 consecutive years, or below 15,000 tons for 3 years.”
The American Founding Fathers planned with awareness of people. They put in place limits on demagoguery, as the November 2010 election demonstrated. Checks and balances are the best-known limit and the process by which the new Congress must stop the insanity at EPA. They must cut the funding that is the fuel that sustains EPA attempts to control energy. If not they will damage the economy; achieve government control; and seriously limit freedom.
“There is no worse heresy than that the office sanctifies the holder of it.” Lord Acton