Spent some time on the phone today with one of my favorite New York Times reporters (that’s not a joke—there are a couple I actually do like and trust to play a story straight up, even when their own views might be otherwise—man bites dog!) about California’s plan to launch their long-promised cap and trade program to fight global warming starting tomorrow. It is a sure sign that California has jumped the shark, or perhaps a better cliché is that California has certified that it is no longer the leader/innovator it once was thought to be, but is a positively reactionary force—a lagging indicator of where the world is really going. Because just when California decides to join the carbon reduction bandwagon, the wheels are coming off that bandwagon.
Tomorrow’s Wall Street Journal will include these two headlines that are up already online:
Japan Reconsiders Plan to Cut Carbon Emissions
EU Weighs Pullback on Cutting Emissions
Here’s the Europe lede first:
BRUSSELS—The European Union is for the first time clearly questioning whether it should press ahead with long-term plans to cut greenhouse-gas emissions if other countries don’t follow suit, in what could herald a significant policy shift for a region that has been at the forefront of advocating action to combat climate change.
In a document reviewed by The Wall Street Journal, the European Commission’s energy department says the EU should consider whether the region should seek to switch its domestic energy base away from carbon-emitting sources in the absence of a global climate-change deal.
Here’s the Japan lede:
TOKYO—Japan is reconsidering plans to cut carbon-dioxide emissions by 25% by 2020 due to a rethinking of its energy future, and the country is worried that it is spending too much on carbon-credit programs, a senior government official said on Wednesday.
Japan’s doubts, prompted in part by its nuclear disaster in March, come at a time the European Union is questioning whether it should press ahead with plans to cut greenhouse-gas emissions if others don’t follow suit.
Meanwhile, one of the Obama administrations climate negotiators, Jonathan Pershing, tells the Journal, “We do not believe conditions are right for a mandate in Durban [site of the next UN climate treaty negotiations next month] for a legally binding agreement.” Sounds like game over for the climate campaign. Coming next from the Obamanauts: Approval of the Keystone Xl pipeline.
How many ways can you say that this whole charade is over, that people are seeing through the Emperor’s New Clothes?