Top Democrat to propose climate welfare

Carbon Control News reported today that,

Rep. Jim McDermott (D-WA), a senior member of the House Ways & Means Committee and chairman of the subcommittee on income security, is drafting climate change legislation that aims to ensure low-income households are not adversely affected by the higher costs for energy and consumer goods that will accompany federal restrictions on greenhouse gases.

By providing low-income households with direct rebates and tax credits, McDermott views this legislation as addressing “social justice” concerns. A similar proposal was recently made by the Center for Budget Policy Priorities.

Greens attack baby shampoos

Green groups, masquerading as the “Campaign for Safe Cosmetics” this week attacked personal care products companies via a new report claiming that children’s bath products are:

“contaminated with the cancer causing chemicals formaldehyde and 1,4-dioxane” and that the chemicals “were not disclosed on product labels because the contaminants are exempt from labeling laws.”

Fortunately, the industry is fighting back. The Personal Care Products Council points out in a release that:

  • “1,4 dioxane is a byproduct that can form in trace or miniscule amounts during the manufacturing process for ingredients that help to ensure mildness of some personal care products such as shampoo and bubble bath”
  • the “FDA has monitored 1,4 dioxane in cosmetic and personal care products since the 1970s [and] has stated that the 1,4 dioxane levels found in their monitoring of personal care products and cosmetics ‘do not present a hazard to consumers.'”
  • “Formaldehyde is a simple compound consisting of hydrogen, oxygen and carbon. It occurs naturally in the air we breathe and is even part of the human metabolism. Plants and animals also produce formaldehyde, and it is released as a byproduct of certain vegetables, such as Brussels sprouts and cabbage, when they are cooked.”
  • Historically, formaldehyde was first used as a biological preservative more than a century ago. Today, formaldehyde-releasing preservatives are ingredients that help to ensure the safety of products by protecting them from harmful contamination by microorganisms during storage and during continued use by consumers. These preservatives have the ability to replace used-up formaldehyde by releasing it in very small amounts over time as needed. The use of formaldehyde-releasing preservatives ensures that the actual level of free formaldehyde in the product remains very low but sufficient enough to prevent or eliminate bacterial growth. Exposures to formaldehyde through personal care products are generally extremely low”
  • The Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR), an independent panel of scientific and medical experts who assess the safety of ingredients used in U.S. cosmetic and personal care products, “concluded that formaldehyde in cosmetics and personal care products is safe and should not exceed 0.2 percent (2,000 ppm) when measured as free formaldehyde.” Click here for the FDA regulations on formaldehyde.
  • Even “the European Union’s Cosmetic Directive allows use of formaldehyde in cosmetic and personal care products at a maximum concentration of 0.2 percent or 2,000 ppm (free formaldehyde).

The scientific vacuity of the green attack on products like Johnsons’s Baby Shampoo, Sesame Street Bubble Bath, Baby Magic Baby Lotion and others is perhaps best exemplified by the endorsement of the University of Pittsburgh’s Devra Lee Davis, whose work was once labeled in Science magazine as “uninteresting,” “uninformative,” “boring” and “old junk” by famed epidemiologist Sir Richard Doll.

The true nature of the attack on baby bath products is evidenced by actual forces behind the supposed “Campaign for Safe Cosmetics.” These groups include the Environmental Working Group, Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, the National Environmental Trust and U.S. PIRG. The groups are not interested in consumer safety or environmental protection so much as they are advancing their anti-people/anti-business social and political agenda.

Take action:

Green gridlock: No new transmission lines?

Twenty-six environmental groups have written White House energy czar and former Socialist International official Carol Browner informing her that, if the electricity transmission grid must be expanded — they prefer rationing — the grid should be dedicated exclusively to renewable sources. New lines should not facilitate the expansion of coal power, say the greens.

Prince Charles: Change your behavior while I jet around the world

Prince Charles told business leaders in Brazil today that,

“The best projections tell us that we have less than 100 months to alter our behaviour before we risk catastrophic climate change.”

But how did Prince Charles get to Brazil? By jet. And he’s off to the Galapagos Islands next. When will he (and other green elites) change their behavior?

Steve Milloy’s new book Green Hell: How Environmentalists Plan to Control Your Life and What You Can Do to Stop Them spotlights the green double standard — the one for the elites and the one for you.

Al Gore comes for your dryer?

The web site for Al Gore’s movie An Inconvenient Truth recommends that you:

Use a clothesline instead of a dryer whenever possible

You can save 700 pounds of carbon dioxide when you air dry your clothes for 6 months out of the year.

But University of Montreal researcher Emanuela Cardia points out in a new study entitled “Household Technology: Was it the Engine of Liberation?” that,

… ownership of washing machines, dryers and freezers increased the presence of married women in the labor market.

Green doesn’t sound very liberating, does it?

Solar pays off — for monk-ish couple

The Washington Post reported today that,

While people around him fret about their escalating utility bills and vent at their politicians, Al Schnoebelen looks out his triple-paned living room window and feels pretty lucky.

Last month’s energy charges from Delmarva Power? A mere $3.35. With taxes and surcharges more than doubling the bill, Schnoebelen wrote a check this week for a whopping $10.65.

And that was relatively high. Before a failing propane freezer was replaced with an electric one last year, Schnoebelen and his wife, Nancy, paid about 35 cents a month before taxes.

The couple’s 2,000-square-foot, two-bedroom Eastern Shore bungalow has been powered by the sun for 19 years.

What did their system cost? According to the Post,

The solar system cost $4,200. It was shipped in a box from a California company: three batteries and transformers to convert the sun’s low-voltage power to AC current. The company went out of business when the solar fad of the 1970s and 1980s faded.

But things have changed over the last 20 years:

Today, there’s new technology for those who follow the Schnoebelens’ path. But the start-up costs are significant, at $8,000 to $40,000, depending on how much power the system produces, officials with the Maryland Energy Administration said.

Moreover, do you really want to live like the Schnoebelens? According to the Post article,

The Schnoebelens live simply — no Internet, no cellphone, no answering machine, no cable on the TV.

Steve Milloy’s new book, Green Hell: How Environmentalists Plan to Control Your Life and What You Can Do to Stop Them, spotlights how the greens want to permanently rollback your standard of living.

$23,000 for personal windmill hypocrisy

The Washington Post reported this morning,

As smoke rose from the power plant just across Cuckold Creek, one of the first residential windmills in Maryland began providing the Elliott-Robinson home with a greener source of electricity yesterday.

The couple spent $23,000 to put up a personal windmill in their back yard, which will decrease their dependence on the traditional power grid and the power plant whose smokestacks loom over their home in Charles County.

Of course, when the hot summer days arrive and the wind doesn’t blow, the Elliott-Robinsons will likely be sitting in the comfort of the air conditioning provided courtesy of those looming smokestacks — adding to the Washington, D.C.-area demand problem.

AT&T falls for green vehicle scam

AT&T announced that it will spend $565 million over 10 years buying 8,000 natural gas-powered vehicles and repairing/replacing 7,100 hybrids.

The company said it would pay, on average, $29,000 more per vehicle, costs which it “hopes” will be offset by lower fuel costs in six-to-10 years, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

No doubt the purchase of natural gas vehicles will make T. Boone Pickens happy as he owns the largest supplier of natural gas for vehicles.

The CEOs of FedEx, ExxonMobil and the American Trucking Association, however, have a different view on natural gas vehicles.

As to the value of a hybrid corporate fleet, FedEx CEO Fred Smith told his shareholders at the 2006 annual meeting that hybrids did not make economic sense. Smith blamed politics and the the “cult” of environmentalism for making people do things they otherwise wouldn’t.

Michigan jobs: Wind no substitute for cars

The Financial Times reported today that Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm wants to,

transform Michigan from one of the Rust Belt’s bleakest corners to a mecca for green industries as the state loses tens of thousands of jobs in the car industry.

But Granholm acknowledges that alternative industries will only create about 109,000 jobs, compared to the 400,000 jobs lost in carmaking.

Wayne State University professor Jack Lessenberry observed,

“Windpower… will never employ people in the numbers needed.”

Maybe Granholm should lobby for expanding the supply of cheap gasoline so that people go back to buying Michigan’s most profitable product: the SUV.

‘Heroic’ hybrid drivers

Honda is introducing the first under-$20,000 hybrid, according to the Financial Times.

Honda is trying to drawer buyers away from the Toyota Prius. It hopes to accomplish this with the Insight — a less expensive, but smaller and less efficient car than the Prius.

The Financial Times noted that,

Even at the peak price of more than $4 a gallon, a Prius buyer would have to have driven a heroic 200,000 miles to earn back the price difference with the Insight through better mileage alone.

Take action:

Buy an SUV.

Green land grab narrowly fails in House

A green-supported bill to put another 2 million acres in nine states off limits to energy production failed in the House yesterday by two votes. House Republicans, noting that the move would cost up to $10 billion and block oil and gas development on millions of acres of federal property, prevented Democrats from getting the necessary two-thirds vote.

The lands are located in Oregon, Virginia, California, Colorado, Idaho, Michigan, New Mexico, Utah and West Virginia.

The Washington Post reported today that House Democrats pan to bring the bill up again, but the timing is unclear.

The Senate passed the bill (S. 22) in January.

From the Majority Tracker blog:

Rep. S. 22 is being considered under a special suspension process that suspends all House rules. This process is reserved for noncontroversial bills, limits debate to only 40 minutes and does not allow any amendments. So essentially, members were forced to vote yay or nay without the bill undergoing the scrutiny of the normal legislative process.

Take action:

Here’s who-voted-how in the House.

Tell your congressman to oppose the S.22 land-grab because we need to “Drill here, Drill now.”

Kerry: Climate delay is a ‘mutual suicide pact’

Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) said today that deferring potentially costly actions to combat climate change because of the global economic slump amounted to “a mutual suicide pact,” according to an Agence France Presse report.

Just last week, Kerry said that the most stringent CO2 regulation proposed so far wouldn’t work.

Who knows what Kerry will say next week?

Although it is unfortunate that billionaire T. Boone Pickens seems to have lost his mind since 2004, at least he had it long enough to help make sure that Kerry didn’t become president.