Environment

Environmental justice under Trump

Featured image I have argued that “social justice” is a nonsensical term. Justice has always been understood in our tradition as justice for the individual, qua individual. When a person goes to court, either in a criminal or a civil case, our system strives to provide him with a result that is fair given what he has done or failed to do. This is what we understand justice to be. Thus, when »

Green Weenie Update: Dakota Abscess Protest

Featured image We’re reported before on the environmental mess left behind by the Dakota Access Pipeline protest neat the Standing Rock indian reservation (here and here), but there’s still one more installment to the story that deserves to be entered in the ledger: Rescue group catching animals left behind at DAPL protest camps NEAR CANNON BALL, N.D. (KFYR) – Crews continue to clean up the Oceti Sakowin protest camp. As officers moved in »

Hans Rosling, RIP

Featured image I’ve got a heavy class schedule today, but I just saw the sad news that the great Swedish demographer and statistician Hans Rosling has died at the too early age of 68. He’s not called “the Jedi master of data” for nothing. Among other great creations of his is Gapminder, where you can visualize all kinds of data. I’ve used the site a lot in the classroom with students to »

Audi Flunks Another Emissions Test

Featured image Audi was caught up along with Volkswagen for having fiddled with their diesel engine software to defeat smog checks—a problem that would never have been possible if we had moved to on-road pollution monitoring as free marketeers have been advocating for over 25 years. But now Audi is spewing a new form of noxious emissions, in the form of a TV ad to run during the Super Bowl tomorrow where »

Green Weenie of the Week: Standing Rock Blockheads

Featured image This news story from Reuters requires no commentary to explain why the pretentious protesters against the Dakota Access Pipeline near Standing Rock deserve a coveted Power Line Green Weenie Award: Clean-up begins at Dakota pipeline protest camp Dump trucks and heavy machinery rolled into the protest camp near the site of the Dakota Access Pipeline on Monday, and crews began filling large dumpsters with garbage that has accumulated, much of »

Social Media Refrigerators?

Featured image One of the stranger things in the world of energy is that the Department of Energy does not yet offer an official estimate of how much electricity use is now accounted for by our wireless world. Right now the official statistics only break down energy and electricity use by four broad sectors: residential, commercial, industrial, and transportation. But wireless technology—and all the energy-hungry internet server farms, cell towers, and end-use »

Martin Karo: How green was my Tesla

Featured image Reader Martin Karo is a Philadelphia attorney. Mr. Karo takes a look at the environmental theme that powers the Tesla. Warning: there will be math. He writes: Teslas grind my gears. Well, at least their owners do. Every time, it’s a variation on an old “fighter pilot” joke: How can you tell when a Tesla owner is in the room? Answer: He tells you. Like the fighter pilot, he (seemingly »

EPA Stiffs the People It Injured

Featured image We have written several times about the Gold King Mine disaster, one of the worst and most avoidable environmental incidents of recent years. Through sheer incompetence, the EPA and its contractor spilled three million gallons of toxic liquid into the Animas River in Colorado. The federal government turned the river orange: If a private citizen had done the same thing, he would have been criminally prosecuted. But being a government »

Federal Judge Denounces EPA As Rogue Agency

Featured image In 2014, Murray Energy Corporation and several of its affiliates sued EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, alleging that the EPA was in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 7621, § 321(a) of the Clean Air Act, which requires the agency to “conduct continuing evaluations of potential loss or shifts of employment which may result from the administration or enforcement of the provision of [the Clean Air Act] and applicable implementation plans, including »

It’s a Dog-Eat-Dog World Out There. Oh, Wait

Featured image I sometimes wonder whether Disney movies featuring talking animals are responsible for the sentimentalization of nature at the heart of popular environmentalism. Case in point is the recent video everyone is going nuts over featuring a polar bear “petting” a dog (35 seconds): The Washington Post reports that “The man who shot the video praised the bear for showing ‘that kind of heart toward another animal.'” Now, if you have any sense at »

Using his pen to block drilling, Obama purports to restrict Trump

Featured image President Obama today used his pen to withdraw hundreds of millions of acres of federally owned land in the Arctic and Atlantic Ocean from new offshore oil and gas drilling. Obama acted pursuant to something called the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act. It includes a sentence saying the president may “from time to time, withdraw” from consideration any currently unleased lands in federal offshore waters. The White House described its »

It Pays To Protest

Featured image Enbridge plans to replace an old section of oil pipeline that runs through northern Minnesota. It held an informational meeting in Bemidji, Minnesota, on Tuesday. The meeting was disrupted by a Native American environmental activist named Winona LaDuke. You can see video of her being ejected from the meeting here. LaDuke is identified as the founder of an organization called Honor the Earth. My colleague at Center of the American »

It’s Easy Being Green

Featured image Bald eagles are a protected species. Killing them is a crime, and criminal prosecutions are not rare. But it’s a different story if you are a wind energy company. The Obama administration has just released a final rule that will allow 4,200 bald eagles to be killed by wind turbines a year without penalty: Under the new rule, wind companies and other power providers will not face a penalty if »

Pearl Harbor day for the lawless EPA

Featured image Donald Trump’s administration will not be an entirely orthodox conservative affair. The Carrier deal so demonstrates. However, Trump’s nomination of Scott Pruitt to head the EPA demonstrates that, in important respects, the Trump administration will likely be more conservative than that of George H.W. and George W. Bush, and more conservative than a John McCain or Mitt Romney administration probably would have been. William Reilly was the EPA administrator under »

Three more Trump selections

Featured image President-elect Trump has made at least three more selections for top-level jobs. Gen. John Kelly is his pick to head the Department of Homeland Secretary. Trump has also chosen Oklahoma attorney general Scott Pruitt to head the EPA and Iowa governor Terry Branstad to be the U.S. ambassador to China. Pruitt’s selection will cause liberals the most heartburn. As the attorney general of his state, he has led the fight »

Stick This in Your Pipeline

Featured image The next radical environmental tactic is now evident for eyes to see: block all infrastructure projects—especially oil and gas pipelines—with criminal trespass and obstruction. Having killed the Keystone pipeline (only temporarily, now that Trump is going to approve it once he takes office), the red-greenies are trying to stop the Dakota Access pipeline that has received all of its regulatory permits. Naturally environmentalists have to lie about the whole matter, »

Freaks at the EPA Freak Out

Featured image It’s not just the college campuses that need grief counseling at the moment. Apparently greenies at the EPA are also in need of Play Doh, plush toys, and such. From E&E News: There’s been angst and even some tears for federal workers at EPA and other agencies after Donald Trump won the White House. U.S. EPA employees were in tears. Worried Energy Department staffers were offered counseling. Some federal employees »