Fifty Cents Per Month?
Trenton Politicians are Not Serious about Global Warming
[Update: 7/20/08 - "Of course the greatest obstacle to meeting the challenge of 100 percent renewable electricity in 10 years may be the deep dysfunction of our politics and our self-governing system as it exists today. In recent years, our politics has tended toward incremental proposals made up of small policies designed to avoid offending special interests, alternating with occasional baby steps in the right direction. Our democracy has become sclerotic at a time when these crises require boldness."
I wrote on Wednesday about DEP's proposed new rules to create a pollution trading scheme under "RGGI" (the northeast state's Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative):
Global Warming rhetoric meets reality
Based on the comments, it is obvious that we have a "failure to communicate" (Cool Hand Luke).
So let me take another stab at one key point - ideally, this could be the question of the day for the site. I throw down that challenge to site editors. I dare you to ask this question of Star Ledger readers (or better yet, conduct a formal poll of NJ residents on it)
Are you willing to pay more than 50 cents per month to prevent global warming?
[Note - good suggestion that the word "prevent" should instead be "reduce" or "mitigate". Global warming is already happening now and can not be prevented.]
Governor Corzine and the NJ Legislature say the answer is NO.
They enacted a law that lets polluters off the hook for paying pollution fees that might cost any more than 50 cents per month in the average homeowners electric bill.
That alone is an outrage.
The fact that the proposal allows a 9% INCREASE in CO2 emissions, when for YEARS it has been sold to the public as an emission REDUCTIONS plan, just adds insult to injury. (as we all know due to the extensive PR, that the Global Warming Response Act mandates a 20% reduction by 20202, and 80% by 2050)
Have I made myself clear?
(technical note: the DEP rule stated that the RGGI proposal allows for a 4% increase in average missions from 2002 – 2004 across the 10 state RGGI region. This downplays the fact that it allows for a LARGER 9% increase in NJ emissions. How this data was reported reveals DEP’s attempt to mislead.
Additional bonus point observation for those that really get down in the weeds: DEP adds further misleading analysis by comparing RGGI pollution allowances with PROJECTED emissions under what is an assumed “Business as Usual” scenario (BAU). Again, this grossly misleads, because the BAU scenario assumes an incredible growth of electric demand (27%) by the year 2020. So, instead of the real emissions REDUCTIONS mandated by law, RGGI merely SLOWS THE RATE OF INCREASE in the growth of emissions. Comparing RGGI pollution allowances with a Projected BAU scenario is the same methodology that the Bush Administration’s Department of Energy has been severely criticized for by national environmental groups. Yet that same method applied in NJ by DEP has been praised by environmental groups. Go figure.).