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Delaying action on greenhouse gases will have a very negative effect on the US economy in the near future. The White House Council of Economic Advisers predicts that every decade of delay to cut greenhouse gases will cost an extra 40 percent because of increasing costs of remediation and resolution.

Greenhouse gases created by humans burning carbon fuel are the cause of global climate change.

Global climate change has already begun to change weather patterns. The council pointed out that that the disastrous California drought has cost $2 billion and 150,000 jobs.

The Environmental Protection Agency has recently issued new regulations on greenhouse gas emissions.

I sat in numerous meetings with EPA Director Gina McCarthy to make sure jobs are considered in EPA’s actions. She repeatedly reminded those of us in the meetings that the new regulations are required by the legislation which created the Envirenmental Protection Agency. While the coal industry is complaining bitterly about the new regulations, investment in scrubbers would allow many coal fired plants to continue to operate.

The coal industry has in fact been it’s own worst enemy–closing union coal mines and opening non-union mines in the very same vein of coal, blowing the tops off mountains throughout middle Appalachia, completely de-unionizing coal mining in the once heavily coal unionized states of Indiana and Illinois, the state where Mother Jones is buried in the union miners’ cemetery. The two biggest coal disasters in recent American history were in non-union mines–Sago in Pennsylvania and the Upper Big Branch Mine. Both the miners and management knew the accumulation of coal dust in the Upper Big Branch Mine was way too high, high enough to explode and it did killing 22 miners.

In effect, the coal industry and the utility industry are demanding to operate as they please without regulation, without regard to worker health and public health, with investment, without regard to the US economy.

Photo source: otodo on Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (8+ / 0-)

    @StewartAcuff www.stewartacuff.com

    by StewartAcuff on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 06:55:08 AM PDT

  •  Excellent point, and typical Republican behavior (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    chimene, StewartAcuff

    why spend $10 now on preventive measures when you can spend $20-30 later after things get worse?

    Ever wonder why we, unlike Germany for example, rarely repaint out bridges and only act after the rust gets so bad it threatens collapse? Why paint/maintain a bridge regularly when you can cost yourself 10 times as much fixing the decay later.

    It is a personality defect that is part of what makes "conservatives" conservatives. A trait that nuns with rulers should be smacking out of them while they are still children, to spare the world the expense and pain it leads to when they grow up.

  •  You didn't hear? (0+ / 0-)

    It's too late. Game over.

    •  You didn't hear we're at Grid Parity? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Odysseus

      It's game over for Global Warming deniers, too late for politicians to stand in the way of the markets any more. Now that utility-scale wind and rooftop solar are cheaper than oil or coal and competitive with natural gas, now that it is a question of real money, utilities and businesses are rapidly increasing purchases of renewable power and investments in renewable power systems.

      We even have some decent ideas on how to remove CO2 from the atmosphere as fast as we have been putting it in recently.

      Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

      by Mokurai on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 10:09:04 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Grid parity just means that the (0+ / 0-)

        long-term economics of solar (say) is equal to that of fossil fuels. But it ignores the issue of capital, which is critical. If you want electricity today for your house, you can pay your utility a small amount monthly. Or, you can install a $10,000 solar array, and not have to make future monthly payments. The total payments in either case may now be the same (over many years), but there is still the issue of coming up with the 10 grand.

        •  That turns out to be precisely not the case (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Calamity Jean

          Grid parity for utilities means the levelized costs are equal, including all capital costs.

          Homeowners who can't afford to pay cash up front, on the other hand, can get solar installed on a loan with regular payments to a bank; on a lease, with fixed monthly payments to the solar company's financial partner; or on an as-needed basis, where you pay according to the electricity actually used.

          Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

          by Mokurai on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 12:30:47 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Or via PACE. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Calamity Jean

            PACENOW.org

            Property Assessed Clean Energy allows any municipal taxing body to fund a solar install, put a tax lien on the property until it's paid off, and sidesteps the issue of capital almost entirely.

            Call your local officials, and ensure that the programs are available and funded.

            -7.75 -4.67

            "Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose."

            There are no Christians in foxholes.

            by Odysseus on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 03:51:31 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Thanks much for the comments and the info. (0+ / 0-)

      The people of America have done too much for us to indulge the luxury of giving up.

      @StewartAcuff www.stewartacuff.com

      by StewartAcuff on Mon Aug 11, 2014 at 08:46:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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