Global Warming: A $1.5 Trillion Industry

Featured image The Climate Change Business Journal has calculated that global warming is now a $1.5 trillion a year industry. The Business Journal’s report is not available for free online, but its findings are reviewed by the Insurance Journal. They are eye-opening, to say the least: The $1.5 trillion global “climate change industry” grew at between 17 and 24 percent annually from 2005-2008, slowing to between 4 and 6 percent following the »

Negligent Corporate Polluter Nabbed in Massive Spill. . . Oh, Wait

Featured image There’s been a massive spill of toxic mine tailings into the Animas River in Colorado, “turning the water an opaque orange color reminiscent of boxed mac and cheese,” reports Newsweek. The EPA estimates over 1 million gallons of mining waste was dumped into the river. (See photo below.)  More from Newsweek: The wastewater released contains heavy metals including lead, arsenic, cadmium, and aluminum, Ostrander said. The EPA is preparing a plan »

Climatistas Forced to Abandon Their Own BS

Featured image In my Weekly Standard article out today on the EPA’s so-called “Clean Power Plan,” I note one of the more curious and significant changes from the original draft rule of a year ago and the final rule released on Monday of this week: namely that the fourth “building block” for state compliance—energy conservation/efficiency measures—was dropped from the rule. Here’s the key part of the argument as summarized in the article: »

More Renewable Energy = More Expensive Energy

Featured image This post can be viewed as a companion to Steve’s post immediately below. “Greens” are hailing the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan as a Great Leap Forward, economically as well as environmentally. As I understand it, the EPA is even claiming that requiring more energy to be generated via wind and solar will not increase its cost. That is ridiculous, of course, as wind and solar are nowhere near as »

Lions, Triggers, and Critics, Oh My!

Featured image Let’s begin with everyone’s favorite conservationist, Teddy Roosevelt. Roosevelt loved the big animals of Africa. He especially liked to shoot them. (Hat tip: Peter Huber, Hard Green.) Somehow he is still a revered figure, unlike Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson. Well times change, you say. Lions, rhinos, elephants, and other African megafauna are rare and critically endangered. Anyone who would shoot one for sport is a moral monster on par »

Civil War on the Left, Part 20

Featured image Bezerkeley, I tell ya. You may wish to hesitate before clicking through on this link, because of contains disturbing photos of naked people protesting against the removal of eucalyptus trees in that fair city, because trees are people too. Or something. Put it this way: if these folks went to a Woodstock reunion, they’d probably use LSD suppositories. Here’s the relevant part of the news story, so as to spare »

Unabomber or Unapapa?

Featured image Anyone remember the good old days when you couldn’t tell the difference between the Unabomber’s manifesto “Industrial Society and Its Future” and Al Gore’s Earth in the Balance? There was even an online quiz you could flunk. (Though to remind everyone once again, both owed more to Heidegger.) Well, it’s time to rerun that drill with Pope Francis’s encyclical on the environment. Which is exactly what Colby Cosh does in »

And Still More Environmental Epic Fail

Featured image It never rains (especially in climate change-stricken California) but it pours (which it will probably do next winter in California this El Nino-fueled year). No sooner do I deliver the latest eco-backfire news this morning that my (gluten free/non-animal-tested) in-box fills up with two fresh howlers. First, all those places like universities (natch) that are banning bottled water because there are too many plastic bottles in the waste stream? It »

More Environmental Epic Fail

Featured image Does it seem like most environmental policies backfire to some extent, or just 95 percent of them? I lately returned to the 2012 National Bureau of Economic Research paper on how electric cars are actually more polluting in some states, depending on the electricity source, e.g. if you live in Indiana, every Tesla should come with a bumper sticker that says “How Do You Like My Coal-Powered Car?”  Heh. Earlier »

The Pope’s Encyclical (1)

Featured image About Laudato Si, the Pope’s encyclical on the environment, some preliminary observations: First, although “encyclical” bears some etymological relation to “encyclopedia,” Laudate Si is either too short to be considered an adequate treatment of the wide range of concrete issues and philosophical themes it treats, or too long because it tries to do too much but does it poorly. It raises specific scientific controversies it would have been better to »

How Many Windmills Has the Pope?

Featured image Pope Francis has become a deeply problematic figure, all the more so after his encyclical on global warming was leaked to an Italian publication. The letter, some 129 pages long, is directed to Catholic bishops, but Francis grandly says that it is intended for every person in the world. The letter has not yet been translated into English in its entirety, but portions of it have been run through Google »

Oh Frack! EPA Lets the Greens Down

Featured image This morning the EPA released its long-awaited, multi-year study of hydraulic fracturing (or “fracking,” though those of us with more refined sensibilities call it “rock-massaging”), and it’s going to be a major bummer for the anti-energy left. Here’s the Wall Street Journal headline: Fracking Has No “Widespread Impact” on Drinking Water, EPA Finds A decade into an energy boom led by hydraulic fracturing, the Environmental Protection Agency has concluded there »

Whatever Happened to the “Population Bomb”?

Featured image That’s the question the New York Times asks in its latest “Retro Report,” a series that looks back and updates prominent stories from the past.  “The Unrealized Horrors of Population Explosion” is fairly devastating to the leading figure of that famous apocalypse, Paul Ehrlich, author of the monster best-selling book The Population Bomb: No one was more influential — or more terrifying, some would say — than Paul R. Ehrlich, »

The EPA: Protecting Us from . . . Nail Salons

Featured image Good to know that the EPA is finally getting around to looking into the massive environmental threat posed by . . . nail salons.  From the National Journal: Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy will take a trip to a San Francisco nail salon Wednesday—a visit intended to shine a spotlight on health risks posed by the industry. McCarthy’s West Coast trip arrives on the heels of a New York »

From the Oldies File: George Carlin on Earth Day

Featured image This old George Carlin (RIP) routine about environmentalism has been around a while, but since it’s Earth Day, time for an encore. One thing I noticed upon watching again recently is that it seems you can make out a few disagreeable people in the audience heckling him for transgressing the Party Line: »

Happy Earth Day, Hypocrisy Edition

Featured image Is it Earth Day again? Why yes, yes it is. (It’s also Lenin’s birthday. I’m sure it’s just a coincidence.) I’ll be having a Green Weenie roast on my charcoal grill.  Now, where to start? How about with Obama jetting off today to the Everglades in Florida (estimated jet fuel burned: 9,000 gallons) to use that famous overgrown swamp as a backdrop to warn us of the peril of climate »

Meet “Eco-Modernism”—The New Face of 21st Century Environmentalism

Featured image For a long time I’ve been arguing that environmentalism needs its own Protestant Reformation, with a Martin Luther figure to nail a new 95 Theses to the front door of the Sierra Club (on recycled paper, of course).  The first attempt at this was Michael Shellenberger and Ted Nordhaus’s 2007 book Breakthrough: Why We Can’t Leave Saving the Planet to Environmentalists.  Though Michael and Ted are left-leaning figures, they broke »