Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Why I half expect to die of a tropical New England

Sometimes I don't know where to post: this one is a lament of a gung ho green but the ill is politics that precludes healing the here it goes:

Or, I might starve to death being unable to grow my own food and unable to buy any. I don't see any reduction in emissions in my future even though I am about $400 a month away from carbon neutrality. The "cap and trade" hoax allows us to go on living in denial of how much we must each reduce our personal demand and our indirect demand on fossil fuels. And in the US, we can't even get it together to take that timid turn away from the abyss.

Today's NY Times has a useful analysis of the dismaying failure of the US Senate, and particularly the stubbornly backward Dubya, to enact any measure to redress our headlong rush to climate meltdown. Senator Boxer is faulted for her coordination of the legislation but at least she tried.

If you want a short recap of the teams that play this game where everyone loses, read the editorial.

The reason I find in this mess for such pessimism about near or long term corrections to the course of climate change is that the most progress my countrymen and their legislators claim they could support are half measures that steal the proposed taxes on dirty energy and use them to fund yet more energy consumption. How stupid is this:
One huge issue that was not even addressed in last week’s truncated discussion is what to do with the enormous sums of money likely to be raised by selling emission quotas to industry. Some senators would invest most of that money in clean technologies — wind, solar, even nuclear power — and in a new generation of coal-fired plants that could capture and store carbon emissions. Others would return a sizable share of the proceeds to consumers to help ease the pain of higher energy bills.

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