Another Round of Energy Pork

governors politics senate-repeal-obamacare government congress migration visa security progressive squad energyChristmas is upon us, and the elves are busy in the North Pole suburb of Capitol Hill. The House has produced a draft piece of “green energy” legislation that would yield massive costs, massive economic distortions and massive environmental damage.

Rep. Mike Thompson, D-California, justifies his “Growing Renewable Energy and Efficiency Now (GREEN) Act,” as “a comprehensive approach to addressing the threat of climate change through our tax code.”

Put aside the fact that there is no evidence — none — that there is a climate “crisis” to be addressed. Instead, nowhere have the supporters presented an actual estimate of the “climate” effect of this ostensible effort to achieve “net zero” U.S. emissions of greenhouse gases by 2050. Applying the climate model used by the Environmental Protection Agency, under assumptions that exaggerate the effects of reduced emissions: 0.17 degree Celsius by 2100. Under assumptions more consistent with the recent scientific literature: 0.08 degree Celsius.

So much for the “climate” rationale for this bill. Instead, the legislation is a blatant pork-barrel exercise for innumerable interest groups. In its most important provisions, it would:

—Extend the wind production tax credit through 2024.

—Make permanent the solar investment tax credit, at a declining rate.

—Extend the investment tax credit until 2026 to a variety of energy sources that were excluded from the 2015 tax deal.

—Extend the investment tax credit at a declining rate to batteries and various other technologies at least through 2026.

—Renew a number of lapsed incentives for biofuels until 2024.

—Extend and revise the sales limit for the electric vehicle tax credit by raising the current 200,000-vehicle-per-manufacturer sales cap to 600,000, while reducing the credit from $7,500 to $7,000.

—Implement a new credit for purchases of used plug-in EVs through 2024, with buyers able to claim a base credit of $1,250 for qualifying used vehicles. The credit would be limited to the lesser of $2,500 or 30 percent of the sale price.

—Implement a new manufacturer credit through 2024 for the sale of “heavy zero emission vehicles,” defined as those powered “solely by an electric motor which draws electricity from a battery or fuel cell.”

One searches in vain for a cost estimate for all this political largesse. Instead, amusingly, the summary of the bill states that the “Revenue raisers” are “To be provided.” Note that the tax revenues needed to “pay” in the federal budget for all the tax expenditures in the bill are not the correct analytic issue; instead, it is the cost of the bill to the economy that matters, however difficult it is to measure. That true economic cost is at least double the revenues lost as a result of the various tax credits and incentives, because of the economic distortions (“excess burden”) created by them.

Nor have the proponents mentioned the environmental damage from unconventional energy. Because the energy content of wind and sunlight is unconcentrated, land use both massive and unsightly is necessary for a renewables system. The production process for wind turbines, apart from the use of large quantities of steel, concrete and other such straightforward industrial materials, requires also significant amounts of such toxic heavy metals as neodymium and dysprosium for the magnets, for the most part produced in China, where environmental controls are hardly stringent.

The disposal problem for wind turbines’ blades and magnets only now is beginning to be recognized. The noise and light-flicker effects of wind turbines are a serious problem that siting arrangements can solve only partially. There is no easy solution for the disposal of solar panel waste  — as much as 78 million metric tons worldwide by 2050 — because of the lead, cadmium, chromium and other toxic metals that are released if the panels are broken during the disposal process. And there is the large amount of wildlife destruction attendant upon the operation of wind farms and solar fields.

Because of the unreliability of wind and solar power, the conventional backup units must be cycled up and down depending on whether the renewable units are producing power. That cycling reduces the operating efficiency of the backup units, increasing net emissions of conventional pollutants, and increasing greenhouse gas emissions under a broad range of conditions.

This legislation is a classic example of Beltway pork-barrel chicanery, justified on the basis of half-truths and worse, with actual effects diametrically in conflict with those advertised. It is a wealth redistribution special-interest bonanza with the costs inflicted upon the great mass of the unsuspecting citizenry. It should be rejected, loudly.

Reprinted with permission from - Inside Sources - by Benjamin Zycher

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Jon Kirsch
1 year ago

Stop selling our uranium to Russia, and build more nuclear power plants. VERY safe in the USA. Get rid of many of the post 1980 regulations though. Make them simple and more manual. (just not a fan of large amount of computer control) TMI did NOT release radiation to the area as the media would have you believe. Chernobyl was a VERY poor design with none of the safeguards the US nuke plants have. I am a Navy Nuke, with 25 years commercial nuclear operator experience as well and have no qualms with my family living near a nuke plant in the USA.

1 year ago

Green Deal is one way to destroy the USA economics

Old Silk Hat
1 year ago

Bait and switch, smoke and mirrors; I note that the tax credits go away once they have people hooked on them. Appearing to provide plenty is how the communists rose to power to create the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics as well. Once they got complete power it all went away – just like the tax credits decrease as the left gain more and more power.

1 year ago

I can’t believe there are that many stoned and stupid people in the USA. If they don’t like it here, they can just leave and go to some communist country where they belong. We need to vote everyone of these idiots out of office now before it’s too late. VOTE TRUMP in 2020 vote to drain the swamp.DO IT!

1 year ago

“STOP THE MADNESS!”. Are not we already ahead of the targets set by some climate accord? Are not we doing better than most if not all other countries in this effort. Let’s keep working on this, but without Big Government radical intervention. I say we need to also ratchet down all government subsidies and tax credits over time so as not to disturb current business which have grown dependent on these freebees. If these products are good, they should be able to stand on their own. Our taxes going to support high price vehicles for example, vehicles that only a few somewhat rich folks can afford, are not the correct answer. I say “STOP THE MADNESS!”. Remember Solyndra, the failed government sponsored American solar panel manufacturer?

Mark Brickey
1 year ago

Battery production. Chemicals to make batteries. Disposal of Batteries. Recharging batteries. retooling to make vehicles that not much of anyone wants. Sounds like the “wonderful” late 70’s & 80’s, with the LTD II, Mustang II, Downsized 98 Olds… all the dinky dodge omnis, chevettes, pintos, pontiac 1000s…. Oh, yeah, we want the gov’t to tell us what we’re going to drive!

Mickie Enders
1 year ago

The Green Deal is the sham! This goes back to a similar package that came from the UN.. two articles entitled “Green New Deal Straight From The United Nations” and also “Obama To Sign Onto UN Agenda 21 Treaty Without Congress”.. Obama worked with Socialists and Communists in the U.N and signed an accord that would operate under the pretense of updating the 1993 Climate Change Treaty to include Agenda 21 imperatives and bypass Congress. Obama not only lost billions of dollars but a lot of money disappeared within many countries under this “Green Deal Stimulus Package”.It’s an extension of this old UN package. The Green Deal they are pushing is frightening if you look at the entire thing and realize the consequences.. it falls right in line with Socialist devastation and control of the worlds economy and food supplies

Daniel Smith
1 year ago

So, how do they propose to force Russia, India, Pakistan and other countries that are increasing their carbon foot print to buy into this net zero plan, if co2 is what you think is causing climate change? Only wealthy countries can even conceive of paying for this stuff. I’ve read that humans on the planet account for at least 7% of the carbon in the atmosphere. Would Net zero eliminate that too?

Josephine pooley
1 year ago

This is garbage! What a bunch of jerks!

1 year ago

A big waste of money on projects that actually pollute more than conventional energy methods. Get rid of the subsidies, let the markets determine what kind of innovations we need. Subsidies cause distortions in agriculture, energy, you name it. As someone who grows corn, I know that we would need about 30% less corn but subsidies and farm programs have made us produce more at a higher cost, using more energy, requiring more machinery and yet farmers are not better off than we were 50 years ago. The markets would have told us how much to grow and what to grow just as the markets would have given us the innovations to make our lives better and more efficient in the long run with our farms and energy systems. I see the windmills all over the country and all I can think of is the piles of junk we need to dispose of in the next 30 years and beyond. By the way I fill my gas tank with non-ethanol when I can because that way I get more miles to the gallon. Oh yes, It’s all “good for the economy.”

1 year ago

OH how I just love how the green wienies love to push their wealth distribution and especially when the wealthy green wienies are not part of the redistribute part of the equation.They want the working class to be the ones that should shoulder the burden,well liberals,socialits,dense oc rats,communists and green wienies,”it ain’t gonna happen”,just be very careful what you wish for,very careful.

1 year ago

Reminder: The earth is roughly 4.5 Billion years old. The climate has been changing for that entire time. Even when there were no SUVs! Our “educators”, in their arrogance, seem to think THEY know what “normal” should be.

Edward Vagnoni
1 year ago
Reply to  TheOLDWarhorse

Once the melting ice from the poles gets to a certain point, there wont be mixing of the salt and fresh for years. The cold fresh water sinks to the bottom of the sea, The salt water stays on top. This will upset the gulf currents, and all the currents in the world, and will prevent warmth from traveling North, or South, and an ice age starts. This is what happened in the 1700 hundreds. That’s why the French revolution started, and England had to grow crops that were more able to survive in cold summers. The French King told his subjects to grow what growing in England, but the French people would no listen, so they starved, and had a revolution. The French are nitwits. It was frigged in North America, that Washington had a lot of his troupes freeze. The population in North America did what the King recommended, and they survived. Now we have the Socialist who want to wast all the money to take care of their buddies, and screw the rest of us. They have no idea of preparing for the cold. Stupid human beings. The 2020 election is a vote for Trump, or a vote for Socialism. Out only hope if they win, is a bloody coup, with all Socialist put up against the wall and shot.

Robert Palmiter
1 year ago

Just another reason to drain swamp in DC. Another good reason for term limitations

1 year ago

So the Dems want the US CITIZENS to pay for this and yet the they do not address the biggest violators like China and India and Lord know who else. I am all in favor of the Hypocrite Dems sending in their paycheck to support their stupid idea. For me, I do pay taxes and would rather spend my money on my Grandkids, not the Hypocrite Dems salary.

1 year ago

We must all contact our elected officials — representative and both senators. They only listen when we scream. When we scream in large numbers, they pay attention because they’re afraid they won’t get re-elected if they don’t.

1 year ago


Ed J
1 year ago

After reading this article, I have come to the conclusion that brain farts are alive and well!

Brenda Blunt
1 year ago

What is wrong with these people!! It is just another way to make more money for them!!!

1 year ago

Just another scheme to grab the proletariat’s money(what little we have) so the politburo can increase their power(and wealth).

1 year ago

We NEED more solar, wind and geo thermal energy in this country. Holland relied on wind for centuries. Lately, with all the wind we have here, it would be great. Trees have come down, wires come down, roofs blown off. I have Solar and I would recommend it. I know we need regular fuels too; also nuclear which supplies almost all the energy in Southern NJ. Many companies have installed solar fields to reduce their costs. now towns will have solar fields also to sign up for. We need fuel for cooking, planes, trains, We do not need dirty filthy stinky coal. Smog cleans. allergies asthma, cancer.
Coal lung is very bad. So I agree with most of these things. Electric cars are good but what happens in a power outage. I’d rather have the hybrid that uses both. In the 1964 World’s Fair; they predicted that our atmosphere would get so bad that we’d need domes over our cities.
We know the ice in Artic is melting at an alarming rate. This will bring sea level up even at the US border. Storms are more dangerous.
Fish have moved upward to get into colder waters. Watch the animals. Things are changing fast. It used to take a drought 7 years; rainy season 7 years. now you can have it in one week. Scientists should be studying this and trying to solve some of the problems. They should be studying health and the effects. Science can really do a lot of good when encouraged to solve the problems.

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