A farmer’s view on carbon credits

This short personal essay from “farmer Steve” in North Dakota appeared as a comment on WUWT here. I thought it was a succinct and clear message based on personal experience and values, and thus worth sharing. I’ve made some formatting changes to make it easier to read, otherwise it is exactly as he posted his comment. For background on the North Dakota carbon credit program extended to farmers and ranchers, see this, this, and the program home page. Anyone who wishes to repost this essay has my permission to do so. – Anthony

Above: not farmer Steve, but what I imagine he might look like

Above: not farmer Steve, but what I imagine he might look like. Image from the North Dakota Wheat Commission.

Carbon Credits

I have changed my mind about participating in the carbon credit program. And have resolved to give the money I received to St Jude’s Children’s Hospital.

Here is why.

Recently I sat in the fire hall with a few dozen farmers. We had been invited to hear how we can get paid for carbon credits.

The speaker explained how their satellites can measure the carbon in our land individually and how much money we could get. Then asked for questions.

I asked “what is the source of this money”?

The presenter said it comes from big companies that pollute.

I asked “where do they get this money”? He had no answer.

So I answered for him, asking, “won’t it come from everyone who pays their power bill”? He then agreed and said “that could be”.

I then said isn’t this about the theory of man made global warming? he said “we are not going to talk about that”. Here they are on the prairie soliciting land for carbon credits tempting us with free money.

I believe that agreeing to take their money means you agree with taxing cattle gas also, because methane is a greenhouse gas 20 times more powerful than carbon. I believe taking this money without considering its source makes us no better than the bankers who lent money to people, knowing they could not pay it back. Collecting their fees then selling the bad loans in bundles to someone else. They did not care where the money came from either.

Let’s be clear.

Carbon is not a new commodity! No new wealth is being created here! Is this the way we want to make a living? Let me ask you, what if their satellites determine that your land has lost carbon? You will get a bill, not a check, right? If you make a tillage pass you will get a bill for emitting carbon, is this not correct?

It is also a fact that this income will, in short order, get built into your land cost. You will keep very little and be left with the burden of another bureaucratic program.

Let’s be honest, we feel compelled to take this money because of the need to be competitive, however we also need to hold true to our values and lead by example that means placing our principals ahead of money.

No good citizen is opposed to using the earth’s resources wisely, however, wisdom means a person who has both intelligence and humility. In my view many of the proponents of man made global warming have the first and lack the second. We are able to exercise our freedom in this country because we have abundant, reliable and affordable power. It is ironic that we sat in front of the flag in that fire hall and considered trading our liberty for money.

I’ll leave you with a quote from Roy Disney:

“Decision making becomes easier when your values are clear to you”

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167 thoughts on “A farmer’s view on carbon credits

  1. This essay should be enlarged and posted on bill boards around the country. Steve is one smart farmer.

  2. Correct me if I’m wrong, but doesn’t the farm-based carbon credit pay farmers for not running farm machinery? By doing so, crops are not grown with efficiency, thus reducing the effect of a major carbon sink. The net results would be higher residual carbon in the atmosphere.

    My town has a large herd of goats eating the grass near houses so they don’t have to till it under as a fire break. By not running the D-6 dozer dragging discs, the town is ostensibly reducing carbon emissions. I pointed out that the goats exhale CO2 and toot methane from the other end, both a result from the carbon content of the grass. I’d guess the net results are higher carbon emissions compared with simply plowing the weeds under. Nobody got it.

  3. Zero till farmers here in Canada will be able to get carbon credit money, most zero till is round-up ready canola etc .(genetically engineered) that means Monsanto will be a big winner in all this. The enviromentalists hate monsanto and geneticly engineered crops! Strange times…

  4. Right! CO2 is well mixed, so say IPCC, but they can measure output from a farm?
    Really? What happens if the farm is down wind from a large city?

  5. It seems that unless the crop is used in permanent textiles or some other long lived item that the CO2 will go right back into the atmosphere after its eaten or used as fuel.

  6. I own two cows and a goat on three acres of property. Do I get money for the grass on the property or a bill for the cows and goat?

  7. Farmer Steve is a credit to his occupation. An excellent, thoughtful statement. I especially appreciate his point that

    “No good citizen is opposed to using the earth’s resources wisely, however, wisdom means a person who has both intelligence and humility. In my view many of the proponents of man made global warming have the first and lack the second.”

    I am doing my best in my college composition classes, with students who want to write about AGW, to inject some critical thinking into the process and get them to look at all sides and justify outlandish conclusions like the 6 degree projected increase in global temperatures. It is not easy going. The brainwish fix is in.

  8. My personal experience with farmers (my in-laws have had a dairy farm for 40 years) is that they see through these types of shenanigans in short order.

    Well said, Farmer Steve!

  9. Thank you Farmer Steve.

    I suggest you cover up though, lest you suffer the fate of Joe the Plumber and have a bunch of folks looking through your private records.

  10. The whole economy is crumbling and the government is intent on selling carbon credits. They are going to destroy the economy.

    In Ayn Rand famous book, “Atlas Shrugged” the government also controls the science and uses it. She was incredibly accurate in that book. Now we’re living “Atlas Shrugged”.

  11. Interesting post. I’m happy to see a fellow North Dakotan speak up about this. Incidentally, nice picture–here on the flat east side of the state I envy the scenery of the West River Dakota country.

    On the scientific side, the piece mentioned a method of scanning farmland by satellite to determine the level of carbon emission or sequestration. Given the highly arbitrary and opaque methods by which government bureaucracies construct data about temperature (a regular topic of WUWT), can any informed person honestly believe that federal agencies can construct objective, accurate data about carbon levels of small plots of ground?

    I predict that if current carbon restriction plans actually go forward, the scientific obfuscation that’s currently employed to buttress climate alarmism is going to be multiplied a hundredfold. The current regime of attack and castigation against those who question dangerous AGW will have to be greatly expanded so as to silence those who question the arbitrary findings of the federal carbon accounting authorities.

  12. Steve, Stan, and P Folkens get it…and hats off to Farmer Steve for his clear thinking and ethical strength. Too bad the money-grubbing politicians, myopic environmentalists, and the dumbed-down public don’t get it.

    By the way…can someone here explain to me why Europeans are so edgy about AGW and CO2 emmisions…then go to their cars are drive 200 kph, sucking down gas at a ravenous rate and spewing CO2 in volumes much larger per kilometer than at slower speeds? I guees its the same logic as the folks that want windmills all over the place, but not within sight of THEIR homes.

  13. This is what COMMON SENSE and PRINCIPLES are all about. These in the farmers hearing and GREED and EVIL among the ones offering “carbon shares”.
    Is it making money without producing any good whatsoever not the same as falsifying currency?
    There is criminality behind “global warming”, “climate change” or whatever “they” could call it.
    What they want folks, in the end, is your property and your liberty, your right to be human beings. If we let them they will become our landlords.

  14. In Washington State the government is waiving environmental requirements to allow heat pumps. Their rationale is that by saving electrical usage associated with AC and heating, there is a reduction in carbon pollution.

    For those of you in the east or mid-west, there might actually be some fuel savings where electricity is generated using coal or bunker fuel, but here in Washington, more than 90% of electrical generation comes from hydroelectric sources (Grand Coolee, Bonneville, etc.).

    There is only one coal plant in the state – located next to a coal mine in Centralia in Western Washington. Strangely enough it is right next to the Bonneville transmission lines and supplies much of the power for the state capitol 20 miles north.

    When the WA government began accounting for carbon (in preparation for cap’ntrade) they decided that hydro power didn’t count. They also mandated that the state would build 20% of all future power using only renewable sources, but left out hydro power as part of that 20%.

    Its all a scam. And what’s worse is that everybody knows it and still plays along for fear of the greenies.

  15. I have this feeling of nausea reflecting on this story. Life seems to abound with the ‘Go along to get along’ mentality of the government aparatchik (who is after all very like someone we know-like maybe ourselves) and yet how rare are people of farmer Steve’s moral calibre.

  16. And just exactly when was it decided that government was our guardian? The last thing I need is an omnipotent super-mommy nagging me (or garnishing my allowance). In fact, they treat our earnings as if it were allowance and they feel they can extract as much of it as they want to, especially if they feel we are earning more than we “deserve” to.

    I think the two basic differences of the political polarity are this:

    One side sees government as a benevolent guardian. The other side sees the potential for it to be a malevolent tyrant. One side wants to give government more control over our daily lives and the other side sees this as potentially dangerous and unnecessarily restrictive.

  17. Howarth (08:39:51) :

    I own two cows and a goat on three acres of property. Do I get money for the grass on the property or a bill for the cows and goat?

    Yes

  18. Dear Farmer Steve: For you the words of an american poet:

    The atmosphere is not a perfume, it has no taste of the
    distillation, it is odorless,
    It is for my mouth forever, I am in love with it,
    I will go to the bank by the wood and become undisguised and naked,
    I am mad for it to be in contact with me.

    The smoke of my own breath,
    Echoes, ripples, buzz’d whispers, love-root, silk-thread, crotch and vine,
    My respiration and inspiration, the beating of my heart, the passing
    of blood and air through my lungs,
    The sniff of green leaves and dry leaves, and of the shore and
    dark-color’d sea-rocks, and of hay in the barn,…

    Walt Witman

  19. I love it! “We’re not going to talk about that.” Translation: I don’t want to talk about that. What a scam! You realize that big business (including big Ag) and big government are in bed together over this. Businesses are set to make a ton of profits all by offloading the price for the ‘permits’ on to the consumer (i.e., you and me). Whether they do that directly through pricing, or by selling their leftovers to other businesses on some sort of carbon-trading market, the effect will all the be the same. Owens-Corning is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. Virtually every company invested in any form of energy related products (e.g., General Electric) loves this kind of scheme. And they’ll have expert after expert testifying to Congress how the earth is going to burn unless we all install energy efficient lightbulbs, drive around in electric vehicles like the PUMA, and buy Owens Corning insulation by the truck full. Wake up and smell the coffee, people! This is your own elected government doing this to you (with the help of big business)! And the happy-go-lucky face of this is President Obama himself. And if Congress doesn’t do anything, which it probably won’t to save face, then you can bet the EPA will. After all, you can’t unelect the EPA. You think things are bad now. If they get their way electricity will cost you per kwH what gas costs you per gallon. Try footing THAT bill.

  20. “Do I get money for the grass on the property or a bill for the cows and goat?”

    Silly you should ask. You get a bill for the cows, the goat, AND the grass, of course.

    …the net results are higher carbon emissions compared with simply plowing the weeds under. Nobody got it.

    [snip]

  21. People who live on and by their land have a whole different perspective than the urbanites & subs, a natural ability to see things more clearly. I am concerned for the future when the cities are are deemed most important with their bulk of the population, and can vote for things they not only know nothing about, but have a distorted, misplaced concern for. Thank you, farmer Steve, for speaking up, and to Anthony for posting this.

  22. This is doubtless a sinister conspiracy. In the recent european and latin american countries summit (ALCUE), held in Lima city last year, it was being introduced in the final text of the declaration a sentence where the signees were going to accept that the Amazon jungle it was a property of “mankind”. This was fortunately observed and rejected by Brazil.

  23. All I can add is “Farmer Steve” shouldn’t expect to be invited to the White House or Al Gore’s house anytime soon!

  24. I’d like to see Farmer Steve and James Hansen trade jobs for a year. My guess is GISS would be run better and the farm would suffer based merely on what I’ve observed from the comments of both. Humility when seasoned with common sense beats intelligence every day of the week.

    BTW, this technique employed by the anonymous speaker is the way organized crime works. They get you involved with their schemes under veiled threats to your livelihood and then you’re in too deep to get out.

  25. Here you have the capitalist holy grail, a product that costs nothing to produce giving a 100% return with no outlay, no wonder the money grubbers are loving this latest snake oil scam, they are trading thin air and who pays in the end? the individual consumer of course.
    The carbon traders/the UN/governments will make lots of money and that I fear is the prime motivator here, carbon traders stand to rake in billions and the administration costs will be huge, the UN will increase its income stream and power and the governments will make lots in taxes, everybody wins eh? Well not quite everyone, ordinary people will suffer hugely but who cares about them? certainly not the snake oil salesmen thats for sure.

  26. If we continue to allow the government to go in this direction, we will soon be saying “Brondo. It’s what plants crave!”

    Thankyou Steve for telling them the truth.

  27. Shawn Whelan (08:55:56) :
    “In Ayn Rand famous book, “Atlas Shrugged” the government also controls the science and uses it. She was incredibly accurate in that book. Now we’re living “Atlas Shrugged”.’

    Right. It’s the central planning looters who, out of spite and jealousy, confiscate property, business, and income from those who excel. In the end however, their utopia fails because those with knowledge and ability quit society. Leaving behind cold, empty ghost towns where once life thrived.

  28. Perhaps FarmerSteve could identify the “speaker” or the organization which made this gem of an offer. Who knows? They might even be willing to clarify it on WUWT. It would sure be interesting to get the real “science” behind it.

    Just to clarify what I think I know: aren’t growing crops – corn especially – a sponge for atmospheric carbon?

    It looks an awful lot like the industries and individuals enmeshed in this “carbon credit” business are going to be the next “credit default swap” victims – and on a similar economic scale.

    Still it’s being pitched left and right, fuzzy science and all, notwithstanding its outcomes in several European countries, where they found that the most “shovel-ready” aspect of swapping “carbon” for any kind of “credits” is the potential for fraud.

    Standing in the middle of a field of corn, it may seem like you’re at sea. But if someone offers to chucka trillion dollar life preserver at you – best duck!

    Kudos to Farmer Steve.

  29. Just an add on thought for the above post.

    The parasite class not content with tapping a vein for sustanence have invented a way to tap into a major artery, how long before they bleed the wealth creating body to death?

  30. Congratulations, Farmer Steve! Yours is an example so that others follow your path. As someone did suggest it in WUWT, we must have an ethical or moral oath for scientists, though an unmovable ethics like yours is sown during the childhood at the family nest.

  31. If this is too long snip it…

    The following is an article that appeared in the book, Welcome to Hovezi, 1504-2004. The book was originally published in the Czech Republic in the Czech language and was translated and republished by the Texas Czech Genealogical Society. The following excerpt is found on pages 168-169 of the English translation.

    Wallachian People Want to Know the Truth

    Trying to get the most votes, the statement above was the motto the Communists came up with on Tuesday, May 14, 1946, at Horni Vsacko. The featured speaker was nobody else but Catholic priest, Father Bohus Cernocky, the Slatina in Silesia. It was understood that in an area with a high number of Catholics, the meeting would attract attention. Comrade (Father)Cernocky was accompanied by Comrade Klicha. Both of the were candidates of the UNS. In a stormy environment in front of the community house at Novy Hrozenkov, Cernocky tried to convince the present Christian voters that voting for the Communists was not in disagreement with Catholic faith. Using citations out of the Bible, he condemned rich people and the first republic, which did not have an understanding for the poor. A harsh discussion opened between Cernocky and the local chaplain, Father Dronger, who publicly stated that a God-believing person could not agree with the Communist ideology, which was anti-Christian. Comrade (Father) Cernocky tried to prove the opposite. Both Communist speakers, Kilcha and Cernocky, felt the situation could result with physical contact. They expressed their opinion that the meeting was deliberately put into chaos and most of the people supported their chaplain. (who said)

    …Paragraph deleted here…

    “The ideals of Christ, in the basic form, are in agreement with the requirements of modern socialism, as they are pursued by the Communist Party.”

    There was no doubt that during the election campaign the faithful people trusted Comrade (Father) Cernocky, and they were tricked. It surfaced after the election. The Communists, Klicha and Cernocky were elected into the National parliament with the help of the local Christians. Antonin Surovcak, a local farmer and an honest man, was not elected.

    After the Communist uprising in February 1948, Father Bohus Cernocky, advanced in his spiritual career. Unlike his spiritual brothers, who stayed true to the church and the bishops and were persecuted, he became the Provost of the Vysehrad’s Chapter. The good people of Wallachia, as they were called by the Communist weekly paper, Break Through soon realized the truth. Unfortunately, it was too late. The permanently valid saying states: “Before they catch a bird, they talk to it in nice words.” It was true then and is true today as well.

    The Czechs, like Vaclav Klaus, know what’s going on because they have seen it all before,
    Mike Bryant

  32. Boby Lane: “Businesses are set to make a ton of profits all by offloading the price for the ‘permits’ on to the consumer”

    I do not share your view, businesses will be affected alike. This is an issue of International socialism, businesses will be bought by the states for the “welfare” of people of the world, like in Cuba. Of course there will appear a “New Class”, the class of the comissars who will be the only ones to have a good living, again, as in Cuba or North Korea now.
    “It has not faded away. On the contrary, with treaty after treaty, with summit after summit, the danger of creating a brave new world of a post-democratic European supranationalist entity is getting more and more acute.”
    Vaclav klaus

    http://www.klaus.cz/klaus2/asp/clanek.asp?id=73lC09VpjtyZ

  33. Farmer Steve’s discussion about the wisdom (or lack thereof) of leading AGW advocates reminds me of one of my favorite quotes:

    “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.” – C. S. Lewis

  34. Understand that the US ethanol program is a wealth transfer program from urban and suburban people to (certain) farmers. More importantly, to farm states, whose citizens reelect politicians who keep the gravy train running. Now, we have another siphoning of money from the coasts to the mid-west and plains states. There is no more rationale for the ethanol scam than there is for this one, but it keeps politicians in office, so we pay the price. And our representatives – from urban states – won’t say a peep because both parties are afraid to lose seats in the House and Senate. So we – the vast majority of citizens – get screwed and have no redress. So much for democracy.

  35. Unfortunately I’m not buying the “Farmer Steve” thing.

    While I agree with the sentiment, where’s the proof that this meeting actually took place and they things said were actually said? An anonymous post on a blog isn’t very convincing to me.

    REPLY: See this article on the ND carbon credits extended to farmers and ranchers:

    http://www.publicnewsservice.org/index.php?/content/article/5803-1

    If you’ve ever lived in the Midwest (I have), the “meeting at the fire hall” is exactly how they would notify farmers/ranchers in the many small towns about the program. – Anthony

  36. It’s a very responsible attitude. I am convinced that it is widespread among the U.S. entrepreneurs and businessmen and it makes the future more optimistic, despite many temptations to act otherwise.

    It’s very reasonable for everyone to want to know when the new money being offered are being created. Someone has to pay for them. If it is “just someone whose carbon is seen in the satellite”, you can become a payer, too: the offer is risky for you directly. If it is “everyone”, then the whole system may collapse in the future – and a responsible farmer can’t participate in it, either.

    The idea that the “green economy” creates “jobs” etc. is just the rosy and vacuous part of the story. It is easy to create jobs of a generalized color for all the unemployed. Just ask them to sit in their bedroom and pay them money for that. The next question, however, is where the money comes from.

    Indeed, the money can come from people who are forced to pay them because they use carbon. But from an economic viewpoint, the job of selling carbon credits (and similar job) is equivalent to the job of sitting in the bedroom. In both cases, the working and carbon-producing communities can pay money to such people. Another question is whether it is a wise thing to do to pay parasites – green or otherwise.

  37. Here is where the money comes from.

    Cap and trade policies would likely cost American families $700 to $1,400 dollars per family per year according to the video above. The Department of Energy estimated GDP losses would be between $444 billion and $1.308 trillion over the 21-year period. Cap and trade also could cost the US 4 million jobs. In Missouri and the Midwest where energy is “cheap” it would cause electricity rates to double.

  38. I own two cows and a goat on three acres of property. Do I get money for the grass on the property or a bill for the cows and goat?

    Don’t worry. The government will employ thousands of inspectors to deal with issues exactly like yours. There will also a be a hearing process where you can make claims against unfair carbon assessments and a review board to review and enforce decisions. If you are still not satisfied you can appeal everything to the State Board. All these services will be amply staffed so that you should not lose more than a week or two on the entire appeal process.

    Oh – and don’t worry about who will pay for this – they got that figured out too => It’s YOU and all the other taxpayers!

    Of course, it might be cheaper just to get rid of your goat.

  39. Re: Jeff Alberts above – agree some substantiation would be good. Take the point about the format of the meeting and can see it was a comment on WUWT but now it’s a headline post I think it needs backing up properly.

    REPLY: Thanks for the concern. I added three links to the story to provide background on the carbon credit program extended to farmers and ranchers in North Dakota.

    Also here is a link where they say: “We will sponsor public information meetings for farmers on carbon credit after harvest and before spring planting.” The small town hall meeting is the tried and true way of getting the word out in the Midwest. – Anthony

  40. “The speaker explained how their satellites can measure the carbon in our land individually”

    Didn’t NASA just punt the satellite you’d need for those measurements, the Orbiting Carbon Observatory, into the Antarctic ocean?

    Nice to see “their satellites” work just as well from the bottom of the sea
    (Well, I suppose they could get data from the Japanese CO2 measuring sat, but I didn’t think it was high enough resolution)

  41. Lubos Motl (10:58:23) :

    “It’s a very responsible attitude. I am convinced that it is widespread among the U.S. entrepreneurs and businessmen and it makes the future more optimistic, despite many temptations to act otherwise.

    It’s very reasonable for everyone to want to know when the new money being offered are being created. Someone has to pay for them. If it is “just someone whose carbon is seen in the satellite”, you can become a payer, too: the offer is risky for you directly. If it is “everyone”, then the whole system may collapse in the future – and a responsible farmer can’t participate in it, either.

    The idea that the “green economy” creates “jobs” etc. is just the rosy and vacuous part of the story. It is easy to create jobs of a generalized color for all the unemployed. Just ask them to sit in their bedroom and pay them money for that. The next question, however, is where the money comes from.

    Indeed, the money can come from people who are forced to pay them because they use carbon. But from an economic viewpoint, the job of selling carbon credits (and similar job) is equivalent to the job of sitting in the bedroom. In both cases, the working and carbon-producing communities can pay money to such people. Another question is whether it is a wise thing to do to pay parasites – green or otherwise”.

    Lubos,

    It is not the fact that carbon trading creates a new breed of parasites living from the work of others, we have had those among us since the beginning of civilization.

    It’s the fact that it will cause “run away Government growth”, new “pump until they burst” bubbles that jeopardize our economies and “Green Shackles” on all of us when greenies will tell us how to live our lives.

    This is about our food security, our economy, our way of life and our freedom.

    I am extremely grateful for the level of common sense among those who pull our economies and feed the people.

  42. Anthony, I’m not doubting there’s such a program, just doubting how it’s being characterized by this one anonymous post. Are there any farmers out there who can substantiate this characterization? It just seems like an editorial comment made up to exacerbate the situation.

  43. I’d also like to add that whether or not “Farmer Steve” accepts the money or gives it away, it will still be paid by whomever is paying the carbon tax. I guess I’m failing to see how “Farmer Steve’s” solution to donate the money will change the situation.

  44. Anthony, found this at the North Dakota Farmer’s Union about the carbon credit program:

    http://carboncredit.ndfu.org/

    “Upcoming Events
    Event Date Event Name Location
    05/07/2009 NFU Carbon Credit Presentation @ Wyoming Bankers Annual Agricultural Bankers Conference Historic Bozeman Crossing & Conference Center, 11:15 – 11:45 am
    Tony Frank ”

    Sounds like they’re getting the bankers on board now, of course they better get aboard or they’ll be fired. Most of them will be out of work anyway when the government takes over in earnest… might as well fight it…

  45. Those speculators do not produce anything but they just “pour the empty into the void”, and in between both extremes they make a profit, out of nothing!.
    Who pays the “spread”? you and me.

  46. Another argument to get rid of carbon trade:

    Cap-and-tax = wealth redistribution, no emissions reduction
    “Maryland will take $70 million it receives by charging utilities for carbon emissions to help low- income residents pay power bills, breaking with neighboring states that [claim they] will use the revenue to lower energy use.

    The state’s legislature is expected to approve a budget by April 13 that will divert spending on energy-efficiency projects to rebates. The move proposed by Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley will make it more costly to fight climate change with a “cap-and-trade” emissions market, said Brad Heavner, state director for Environment Maryland, a non-profit advocacy group. …
    “It’s incredibly shortsighted,” he said in an interview. “We need to make sure that the bulk of the money is used for energy-efficiency programs. If it isn’t, then cap-and-trade doesn’t function very well.”
    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601072&sid=a8bexzu4eOzo&refer=energy

    Don’t you get sick and tired of all those extremely reliable and well educated non greedy politicians eager to fight non existing problems with your money?

  47. Doubtville (10:08:00) : “. . . utopia fails because those with knowledge and ability quit society.”

    This is already being observed. A WSJ article mentioned it a few weeks ago. Forward thinking folks with skill and entrepreneurship have started thinking about protecting their families – less about creating businesses, jobs, and wealth that will contribute to a general well being. Just as high income folks move out of places with high taxes so too will people change their behavior. The government won’t get all the money they are expecting from such schemes and will search for another. While the guiding principle is to “spread the wealth around” the ultimate result will be almost everyone will be relatively less well off, and there will be less possibilities of upward economic movement.

    This wonderful new world order is being stealthily introduced under the agenda of saving Earth from catastrophic human-induced warming. As this last is nonsense it is clear the purpose of these actions is an all-controlling government.

    My query to North Dakota wheat farmers and all others who are paid to be less productive and contributory to economic activity is “What do you do now?” AND “Will this be an incentive or a disincentive to a new generation of farmers/builders/workers?”

  48. It looks like the North Dakota Farmer’s Union takes 10% of the carbon credit dollars. $260,00.00 may not seem like much now, but wait ’til they get EVERYBODY signed up.
    Then the fun and games begin… Farmer Jones did you see this latest CO2 report on your property? Also according to the county health department it appears that the septic system on your farm just isn’t up to snuff, it looks like the extra methane escaping is going to set your account back a little… Did you know that your daughter ordered pizza to be delivered to the farm last thursday? Do you know how energy intensive it is to deliver that pizza almost seventeen miles?? Both ways? Oh by the way since we now have the government databases all tied together you might as well let me put those equipment registration fees, you’re excess mileage charges and you’re overdue library book charges on the credit card we have on file for you…
    By the way, as you know, you’re neighbor Farmer Smith is grazing 40 head of cattle in that back pasture of yours, so naturally you are responsible for part of the methane debit over there.
    Farmer Jones, thank you for your kind attention today, and remember we are here to help you! :)

    PS We’ll also automatically deduct the dues and the 10% finder’s fee and send that directly to your union.

  49. Why you must buy carbon credits for the good of your soul:

    Watch Peter Huber’s summing-up in his IQ2 Debate, Major Reductions in Carbon Emissions are Not Worth the Money.

    Scroll to about 6:20 seconds.

  50. JN (09:20:06) :

    Howarth (08:39:51) :

    I own two cows and a goat on three acres of property. Do I get money for the grass on the property or a bill for the cows and goat?

    Yes

    But you can expect the balance of the payments and bills to change as new ‘science’ is commissioned to make sure the federal budget is balanced in the big boy’s favour.

    The commoditisation of science is the aim of the controlling plutocracy. It will lend legitimacy to their scheme to control ever more aspects of our lives.

    If we let them.

  51. I always found it ironic that Rand the capitalist and Orwell the socialist both saw the danger from collectivist control.

    I wonder how many “carbon offsets” NASA will need to buy to offset the creation, launch and operation of those Big Brother satellites.

  52. Jeff Alberts,

    It sounds like Farmer Steve will no longer participate in the program and will donate the carbon credit money that he has already received.

    He said, “I have changed my mind about participating (he will no longer participate) in the carbon credit program. And have resolved to give the money I (already received when I WAS participating) received to St Jude’s Children’s Hospital.”

    Does that sound about right?

  53. Fantastic man you are Steve.

    Let’s see if any of those public figures, celebrities and politicians have the virtues to stand up for what’s right instead of sugar coating their pockets.

  54. A lady with attitude {from the left side of the aisle no less!} summed up the situation we face right now so very well with all this government ‘help’:

    “The power to do things for you is the power to do things to you.” Dorothy Parker (August 22, 1893–June 7, 1967)

  55. More on this, for those who feel like they’ve fallen down the rabbit hole.

    Farmers cashing in on carbon credits

    http://www.jsonline.com/news/wisconsin/29510634.html

    No-till farms qualify

    For cropland to qualify for carbon credits, it must be farmed with no-till or conservation tillage practices. Not tilling up the land each season means the carbon dioxide in the soil is not released into the atmosphere, Raemisch said.

    A farmer has to adhere to certain specific land management practices, she said. But many farmers in Wisconsin already are doing this and have been for some time, she said.

    “If they’re already practicing no-till or conservation tillage, it’s a way for them to get paid for just doing what they’re already doing,” Raemisch said. “So why not?”

    It’s a New New Deal

  56. In the midwest you agree to a certain type of farming pratice. No till or minimum tillage or converting pasture to crop land. Then a set of formulas determine how much carbon is sequestered each year. The amount you sequester is then grouped with other farmers untill the person selling the program has enough carbon to sell the contract in chicago.
    The problem I have is you agree to a certain farming pratice for a set number of years and this change involves costs to the farmer. Whether it is new equipment or different cultural pratices. The promised return is “pie in the sky” there is no locked in return because the carbon credits could be worthless or very valuable. This type of program is especially nasty if your required to agree to invest money and time for a five year period with no guaranteed return.
    Farmer meetings are held every where. School class rooms, church basements, VFW halls anywhere there is a room in a rural area. They are put on by seed companies, fertilizer companies , and extension specialists. And they do not mind telling the person putting the meeting on that his/her ideas a very foolish. In fact they delight in exposing any lies of the presenter.

  57. Sorry, out of topic but… Have you read this News at NAS?

    http://www8.nationalacademies.org/onpinews/newsitem.aspx?RecordID=20090408

    Richard Alley’s assertion, “It is easy to understand: when CO2 is high, ice is low. When CO2 is low, ice is high. CO2 does bring warming”, is misguided.

    The real thing is as follows: When ice is high, CO2 is low. When ice is low, CO2 is high. Warming does bring CO2. From this graph, warm periods precede rises of sea level, and warm oceans lead to increases of CO2, not the opposite:

    Warmer oceans release more CO2 to the atmosphere.

  58. Farmer Steve for President!

    He has more common sense than John McCain and Barrack Obama put together!

    Steamboat Jack

  59. Only on the surface are these schemes promoted in the name of some higher good. Peal away that top layer and you will find a greedy control minded government. If their scheme actually works – in this case to reduce GHGs – the money would no longer be coming in. [How do I bold this last clause?]

    Consider the case of the November 1998 tobacco deal
    “the money was supposed to help pay for health care and anti-smoking campaigns. Instead, much of it — even payments that aren’t due for 20 years — has already been spent on politically popular tax breaks through complicated borrowing schemes initiated by Wall Street investment banks. Because these states have essentially borrowed against future payments from the tobacco industry, they are now dependent on the continued vitality of cigarette sales.”

    http://redtape.msnbc.com/2008/11/ten-years-later.html

    What makes anyone think cap&trade and related schemes are any different?

  60. I wonder if farmer Steve would agree with this: click

    I grew up in corn country, and in hot weather you can hear the cornstalks growing.

  61. I heard a similar story from an Aussie farmer.

    He had grown rows of trees as a wind break and a guy calling himself a carbon trader turned up and told him he could get carbon credits for the carbon the trees were capturing. It turned out he got around $800 for the credits which covered his costs, so the farmer was happy. The trader took a percentage.

    The trader then onsold the credits to a power company that burnt coal – the trader took a second percentage.

    The power company would pass the cost on to the public.

    You can see who benefits.

  62. John F. Hultquist (12:38:43):

    … – the money would no longer be coming in. [How do I bold this last clause?]

    Before your text, type a left arrow “, no interspaced. Then write your text “the money would no longer be coming in. Then, after your text, type a left arrow “”. For example:

    the money would no longer be coming in.

  63. Smokey (12:43:44) :

    Did you notice in that article that the projected loss is a mere $1.4 billion dollars per year in crop yields? Now that we have become the Obamanation how can they even show their faces in public talking about a measley billion dollars?!? Billions are so last century. Sure there are 100 billion stars in our galaxy, but in order for dollars to be worth talking about the threshold now is a trillion. A billion here and a billion there and soon you’re not even talking about the interest on the latest spending scheme.

  64. One of the oddest things about climate change is that those who have the most to loose from unmitigated climate change and the most to gain by mitigation are often the most sceptical.

    >Zero till farmers here in Canada will be able to get carbon credit money…

    Zero till makes good sense regardless of climate change – particularly in reducing erosion, on farm costs, moisture retention, soil fertility and increasing yields in droughts.

  65. Oops! something went wrong with my tip:

    Before your text, type a left arrow , no interspaced. Then write your text “the money would no longer be coming in”. Then, after your text, type a left arrow

  66. I read the links that Anthony provided.

    I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

    Some farm state legislators in order to garner support for the cap and trade legislation are trying to come up with a plan that allows their farming constituents to sell carbon offsets of their own. They merely have to do ‘eco-friendly’ things like plant trees and the money comes rolling in. Something for everybody! Except the little guy who has to pay for the inevitable increase in energy costs.

    Then I read about a farmer who’d already been using no-till and just got his big check for something he was doing anyway. Something for nothing.

    ” . . .he made about $1,500 last year from carbon credits.
    ‘I’m getting that for doing nothing out of the ordinary,’ Niederman said. ”

    Can you blame these farmers for taking the money? If everyone else is lining up – you’d be a fool not to.

    I keep thinking I’m going to wake up.

    I pray this great nation will.

  67. So Farmer Steve and Anthony have to provide “proof” for their statements, but AGW fanatics can say anything they want, true or not? That should give you cause for concern.

  68. This has to be one of the most poignant posts on WUWT and I hope it is read and circulated widely. Thank you Farmer Steve (and Anthony for giving this prominence).

    Ironically no till farming can have negative consequences which more than off-set the carbon savings. This is particularly so on heavier soils where nitrogen is more likely to be lost as nitrous oxide (N2O). N20 has 300 times the greenhouse effect of CO2. I’ve seen/heard this discussed many times recently, but there was a high profile paper in October of last year – http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081022135622.htm
    Graphs here: http://i234.photobucket.com/albums/ee274/biopact3/1363fig6.jpg

    Just wait until they start measuring N2O emissions from farms.

  69. Now you know why I no longer participate in the agricultural census, register my livestock, or have anything to do with the Department of Agriculture. If the government doesn’t know what I’m doing, they can’t impose fees. Agriculture is not my vocation but my avocation, anyway.

    My excess livestock goes to immigrants that pay cash and don’t want to have anything to do with the government, either.

  70. About that no-tillage – I’ve been on a conference about African agriculture and a guy from the USA talked about the biology of a certain weed named Striga, that attachs itself to the roots of sorghum and literally sucks it to death. During the coffee break I asked him if there may be an introduction of this unpleasant parasitic weed to the USA or Australia.
    He said that there’s no way Striga can survive the tillage done in these countries, but in Africa, they don’t or can’t make tillage so deep to destroy the parasite. So maybe Striga has a chance now…

  71. Of course it’s a scam!

    Company A pays money to continue doing what they have been doing all along.
    Farmer continues what he has been doing all along.

    CO2: no net change.
    Wealth: relocation from all segments of society including the poor (all of Company A’s customers) to the wealthiest (Al Gore)

  72. Smokey (12:43:44) :

    I wonder if farmer Steve would agree with this: click

    I grew up in corn country, and in hot weather you can hear the cornstalks growing.

    Smokey when the corn is growing that fast you can also smell it. It is so wonderful.
    To comment on your article it must be nice to draw wide ranging conclusions and not show the caculations that got you there.

  73. Jeepers folks, don’t go crazy just because someone put’s farmer in front of his name. I am sure this guy has participated in government farm programs all his life. It just a fact of life for farmers. I’m sure this guy understands the resentments of participating in programs, but if he’s really a farmer he’s very likely already collecting program payments. If he said his name we could look him up. http://farm.ewg.org/farm/index.php?key=nosign

  74. The farmers are being lured into a trap. When the carbon bubble busts, as all trading schemes end in bubbles that pop, the small farmer will be bust, and big boys (banksters and carbon traders) who pop the bubbles take the farms.

    Also, at what point does it become more profitable to just not grow crops and just grow trees and collect carbon credits during the bubble phase. This will eventually send food prices through the roof.

    In addition, no-till farming reduces crop yields in the short term during transition, and during global cooling, shortens the growing season, requires the use of more herbicides and insecticides (Mosnato has a solution for you) and is not suitable for certain crops like corn. And when the herbicides no longer kill your weeds as they become resistant to the various herbicides and Monsanto runs out of solutions, forcing you to till, presumably you will be taxed for your land use change. Those who can not pay the tax lose the farm, and Monsantos partners in crime jump in and take it over.

    Farmers going for this scheme tread on a dangerous slope.

  75. Another Green Scam

    At Woodend in Central Victoria, Australia we have a Sustainability Group with the acronym WISE who have come up with an incredible and deceptive scheme to sell green electricity. The Mayor of Macedon Ranges has already subscribed to buy 100% of his home power for the next 12 months from the Challicum Hills Wind Farm. The deceptive and absurd part of this is that inland wind turbines at best operate only 23% of the time and their hours of operation might occur during the night or at a time when the Mayor household is not using electricity. This scam is designed to support community wind farms one of which WISE hopes to establish so that they can sell 100% of their rated power even though they will produce less than a quarter of that.

  76. This is all beginning to sound like the rules, regulations and petty bureaucracy that bedevilled us in the UK during WWII. Can’t answer for how it was done in the US.
    The whole business is starting to get more than bit frightening!

  77. I always found it ironic that Rand the capitalist and Orwell the socialist both saw the danger from collectivist control.

    Orwell’s brand of socialism wasn’t very collective in the first place and had nothing to do with equality of pay, etc. It had more to do with higher taxes for the rich and for nations like India, the country of his birth, to acquire independence from the injustices he saw. In that context one can understand and sympathise with his words in ‘Why I Write’. He also found India’s caste system despicable and though socialism was the only way for India to rid itself of it. It didn’t quite work out that way though. India’s 40 year experiment with socialism resulted in an elitist bureaucracy who allowed poverty to grow faster than ever in India’s 5000 year history. Ever since the free market reforms of the 90s India’s quality of life has improved drastically and birth rates and death rates have dropped. Socialism talk the talk, libetarian capitalism talk the talk. India is proof that free trade and less regulation creates a more just society.

    As time went on Orwell disagreed more and more with socialism. You can see in his essays and novels that he was challenging himself. He didn’t stick to one point of view and stay there like so many well known public figures do, because they are too vain to challenge themselves like he did.

  78. It is interesting to sit here outside of America -shaking my head in disbelief-whilst watching the decline and fall by its own hand. Nearby are two contestants for the title -India and China. The results should be in soon.

  79. Alexis de Tocqueville is frequently quoted. Here are two that seem appropriate for this thread:

    “Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word, equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude.”

    “The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public’s money.”

  80. I’m with Albert and the other skeptics of Steve…I don’t buy any of this unless I see a video of the meeting posted, or the offical meeting minutes.

    Note that he didn’t say “No,thanks, keep the money,” instead he said “I’ll give it to someone else.” It’s still a regulated transfer of wealth…in fact, he’s now another layer in that process.

    We need entire towns, villages, counties, areas and states standing up for this. More action and less “feel good,” if ya know what I mean. The “feel good” part kind of feels like the AGW crowd’s tactics.

  81. This is really the most ridiculous part of the cap and trade system, as I see it.
    I’m from New Zealand and we are, in large part, an agricultural nation. Most of our “carbon” emissions come from our beef and dairy herds, not from burning fossil fuels (not that we are large emitters in the first place).

    In 2008 our previous government (the one that just got voted out) passed an emissions trading scheme. Effectively a cap and trade system. They included agricultural emissions (mostly methane) in the scheme. Now, I have only a basic understanding of chemistry but as I remember, methane is just C-H4. i.e. one carbon molecule four hydrogen. I’m also vaugely aware of the law of conservation of mass/energy. Now unless our dairy herds have some bulit in fission or fusion capabilities they are not synthesizing the carbon. This leaves me wondering where do our politicians think this carbon is coming from and do they think reducing the size of our dairy herds will actually reduce the amount of “carbon” in the atmosphere?

    As far as the AR4 was concerned methane levels were not increasing, which makes me wonder why they want to limit their emissions in the first place. I have heard recently that some scientists have found a spike in the concentration of methane, yet that makes regulation even more pointless. It then becomes obvious that if there hasn’t been a huge agricultural spike, it could only be due to other causes.

  82. All this green economic restructuring will cause a downturn in the economy at the end of which most people will be poorer, as opposed to the normal course of economic restructuring that results in most people being better off eventually.

  83. Has anyone brought this up yet?

    Self-proclaimed victims of global warming or those who “expect to suffer” from it – from beachfront property owners to asthmatics – for the first time would be able to sue the federal government or private businesses over greenhouse gas emissions under a little-noticed provision slipped into the House climate bill.

    Imagine that … you can now sue if you “expect” damage to happen, not if you have actually suffered any damage.

    There is a moronic convergence going on in Washington DC. I am simply stunned.

  84. Gerard (14:32:03) :

    “Another Green Scam

    At Woodend in Central Victoria, Australia we have a Sustainability Group with the acronym WISE who have come up with an incredible and deceptive scheme to sell green electricity. The Mayor of Macedon Ranges has already subscribed to buy 100% of his home power for the next 12 months from the Challicum Hills Wind Farm. The deceptive and absurd part of this is that inland wind turbines at best operate only 23% of the time and their hours of operation might occur during the night or at a time when the Mayor household is not using electricity. This scam is designed to support community wind farms one of which WISE hopes to establish so that they can sell 100% of their rated power even though they will produce less than a quarter of that.”

    Gerard,

    The same happens in Europe.

    The Swiss buy up cheap electricity from German Coal Power plants.
    They use it to pump water up into a mountain lake.

    During the day time this water is used to drive a turbine generating electricity which is sold as Green Electricity to…German families.

    These Green Scams tell you three things.
    1. Green is not really green.
    2. It’s easy to scam people.
    3. Government and consumer protection does not function.

    If they would know how they were conned….!

  85. Carbon credits, cap and trade – whatever you want to call it – is no different to any other Ponzi scheme. If it weren’t for the fact that it is the state sponsoring it, the state would declare it illegal. Either way, it’s destined to fail – like all Ponzi schemes.

  86. There has been a lot of science done on zero-till and pastureland in terms of the Carbon that is sequestered. [With real measurements that have duplicated dozens of times unlike GISS’ with its theoritical measurements].

    On average, each acre will sink about 0.3 tons of Carbon each year so going by the (fluctuating) market rate, that should be good for +$5 per acre per farmer/rancher.

    The downside is that a big percentage of the Carbon returns to the atmosphere as CO2 as soon as it tilled again so it has to stay as zero-till or pastureland essentially for decades to make any difference.

    Someone raised N2O, the third biggest GHG. It turns out that almost all the Nitrogen fertilizer used by a farmer ends up going up into the atmosphere as N20 after a year or two.

    N2O numbers are rising just as fast as CO2 and, given we need to use Nitrogen fertilizer, it appears there is nothing that can be done about it (except using it only where and when needed).

    And fertilizer usage is measured in the Kyoto Protocol and converted to N20 emissions for a given jurisdiction so it is measured.

    [It is interesting that the Kyoto Protocol did not even make a dent in the CO2 numbers. It is rising at the same rate it always was (slightly exponential) so everyone should be able to call BS on the Kyoto Protocol].

  87. Hmmm, I wonder if Ted Turner is eligible to receive carbon credits from all of his land he bought in the Midwest. He owns something like 2 million acres of land, much of it in the Midwest, and nobody has a clue as to what he intends to do with it. I wonder if he planned on getting carbon credits (assuming he is eligible)?

    http://www.landreport.com/2009/01/100-ted-turner/

  88. Isn’t it curious that most items on commodity exchanges have tangible value? The markets make their biggest errors when they try to place value on intangibles, i.e., credit default swaps and other financial instruments that have no intrinsic value but only depend on financial markets for trading values which can quickly go to zero.

    Answer this. Would you be willing to take delivery on 1 million tons of CO2?

    Please note who’s interested in establishing carbon credits. Politicians (think of all those juicy taxes they can spend), financial firms (think of all those fabulous commisions they’ll make), enviros (think of all the industries they can shut down).

    Remember Deep Throat: “Follow the money”

  89. Nasif Nahle (12:55:05) : left arrow, right arrow

    I learn something new every day here.

  90. OT

    Mauna Loa CO2 is out for March, and takes a giant step up…

    Kind of odd considering the recession and the cooler temps.

  91. I’m with Albert and the other skeptics of Steve…I don’t buy any of this unless I see a video of the meeting posted, or the offical meeting minutes.

    I’ll guarantee you that these meetings are going on in various places. I haven’t attended one because I have a thing about collecting money from scams, but, these carbon credits get discussed quite frequently on Ag blogs and an awful lot of guys are all for them. Maybe after another cool wet year some folks will start to change their minds.

    On average, each acre will sink about 0.3 tons of Carbon each year so going by the (fluctuating) market rate, that should be good for +$5 per acre per farmer/rancher.

    That’s about right, which gives it the added benefit of not really worth messing with unless you’re in an area that’s already a marginal profitability area. Oh, and FWIW, the govt also has subsidies out for farmers who want to try or switch to reduced tillage, so you can collect double.

    And, yes, I collect farm subsidies, it’s simply too much of a competitive disadvantage not to. You won’t farm too long if everybody else can bid $20-$40 an acre more than you because of receiving subsidies. The vast majorities of any govt payments are simply passed through to the landowners.

  92. Mike Bryant (17:45:42) : Mauna Loa CO2 . . . takes a giant step up…
    Kind of odd considering the recession and the cooler temps.

    Didn’t you notice it was just summer in the Southern Hemisphere. Big ocean, summer, warm, CO2. That’s not odd.

  93. John,
    Sure it’s odd, they have summer every year,man, it’s way over trend for March… you have a ruler?

  94. My father farmed a small 80 acre farm in NW Mississippi when I was just a youngster. We were paid not to plant a certain amount of acreage each year and they did send an “agent” out to measure our fields every summer and wehad to turn under any overage or lose the payment. I have no doubt that farmer Steve is a real person. My father used to curse because there was no choice about it. The government determined how much you could grow. I feel bad for farmer Steve because there is the destinct possibility that he might not be allowed to not participate in the program if he already has. Our government has a funny way of once you are in you are in and can’t change your mind.

    I very much fear for our country due to the changes that are taking place due to the “crisis” mentality in our government and in our educationaly deficient masses. I think we are in big trouble.

    Bill Derryberry

  95. I apologize for the typing errors above my spell checker went bonkers and submitted the post before completion.

    Bill Derryberry

  96. bob (08:34:47) :

    There’s a reason why most of the corn crop goes to fuel and feed in the US. Its genetically altered like your canola crop.

    http://www.ers.usda.gov/Data/BiotechCrops/

    Unfortunately for us very many countries will not accept our grains or soy because of this. Roundup ready crops have no research behind them and are now starting to show their dark side. Though most are used for animal feed, they do show up in our cereals and soy products for human consumption.

    http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/04/07/Monsantos-Roundup-Residues-in-GM-Food-Cause-Cell-Damage.aspx

    On top of that they carry dominant genes which make it very likely that you will end up with Genetically altered crop even if you didnt plant it if there is a field of it nearby. Add to that new roundup resistant weeds and were starting to see the problem that this monoculture is causing. Our US congressmen think we are too stupid and fear driven to decide if this stuff should be in our food supply so we all get to be test bunnies, lucky us.

    I guess you can tell I was for labeling of such food products.. but that does not dimish farmer Steve’s decision to not hop on the gravy train called cap and trade. My standing ovation still holds:)

  97. does anyone know who the speaker referred to was (representing what company or agency) and whose satellite is doing the CO2 assessment

  98. John F. Hultquist (17:40:49) :

    Nasif Nahle (12:55:05) : left arrow, right arrow

    I learn something new every day here.

    Hahaha! I failed on explaining how to bold a paragraph because I don’t know why arrows and other characters disappear as the post is submitted. Sorry… Let me try again:

    = right arrow
    / = slash

    Now, let’s try, left arrow, b from bold, right arrow. Your paragraph. Left arrow, slash, b from bold, right arrow… Heh! Apologies if it fails again.

  99. FWIW, on CNBC (and maybe some of the other business / financial news channels) they are four walling this ad promoting the carbon cap and trade agenda. The pitch is that the world is too hot (picture of world cooking in frying pan) and the economy is to cold (picture of shivering pig – ala piggy bank); wouldn’t it be good to use one to fix the other (picture of fan blowing hot air from world over cold pig; turning to happy pig and cool world) with some babble wrapped around it about cap and trade making lots of money while doing it. It’s clearly paid propaganda to promote an agenda of money and greed from AGW; just don’t know who’s doing the paying…

  100. I reposted this excellent comment by Farmer Steve and now I have a nice liberal AGW climatology student on the Air Vent who decided that Cap and Trade will actually make money for us.

    Thank god he explained that to me, all this time I thought higher costs and taxes cost more. What was I thinking.

  101. The global warming issue was always about adding “old” co2 to the atmosphere, energy long locked away underground.

    So why would farmland or farting cows have anything to do with it??? They are all part of the “contempory” carbon cycle, irrelent to the hypothesis of global warming. Its just a redistribution of wealth is it not? Absurd how science can be so grossly misused and yet no one stands up and speaks out about the truth of the matter!

    Lets just get this clear, we can not change co2 levels by farming, we can only move it around, from soil to plant to animal to soil and so on and so on…..

  102. Like all other derivatives, when the carbon credit bubble bursts someone is going to be left holding a bunch of useless paper. Check with your banks and brokers that they are not exposed to this scam.

  103. Thanks Anthony. My first thought was that this should be read aloud in congress. I honestly believe that most of our politicians don’t really care about the science. If there is a way to get more money and in such a way as to hide it behind “the green door” and “save the planet” all at the same time, their all for it. Farmer Steve may have cut right through their “charade”. I copied it and sent it on to Senator Imofe’s committee on the environment. Just maybe he can do something with it to embarress his colleagues. Unfortunately all the AGW debunking in the world won’t stop these people from trying to change the world to their liking. ChuckNJ

  104. carbon credit is new solution for developed country to keep their forest from deforestation. its talked about the incentive for developed country, coz its willingness to make sure its forest is save and decrase global warming time.

  105. Smokey (12:43)

    My Dad had a 400 acre dairy farm, he would have been the expert, not me. But, the article you cite states corn likes cool weather. That runs contrary to my experience (and I gather yours). For corn we always wanted hot weather and warm nights. This seems like another example of someone making up facts to suit their agenda. In cool years my brothers have been concerned with getting corn to maturity before the frost. Any other opinions out there?

  106. Anthony and farmer Steve above – thanks additional links appreciated.

    Also Stumpy above – seems a good point to me. How do the numbers work out for maximum sequestration potential of agriculture? I’d also guess that once land has converted to “sequester” status it will have to be for perpetuity?

    Will the scheme have back back clauses? Could one “sequester” at one rate and then (lets say) the view on CO2 role in climate change is revised and the value of CO2 falls, could one then buy back at a lower rate? Is this an opportunity for speculative gain and if so how would the flow of funds work out?

    Sorry if this is covered and I’ve missed it – just checking the thread at the end.

  107. Bill McClure (12:22:53) :

    This type of program is especially nasty if your required to agree to invest money and time for a five year period with no guaranteed return.

    I had trouble digesting this sentence … did you perhaps mean:

    “if you are required to agree …”

    It makes no sense otherwise.

  108. .
    Carbon Credits are a scam. This is an article I wrote last year, perhaps some elements of this could be used for another WUWT article.

    This is not a spam email, but an article.

    Ralph

    Global Warming and the Carbon Trading Scam

    Welcome to the world of legal pyramid selling, and the newest scam in town is Carbon Trading. Roll up folks, roll up – make £billions and save the planet at the same time. To good to be true? You bet, but there is no point missing out on a good scam.

    So what is Carbon Trading, and what is it supposed to achieve? Well, it was created by the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, which was signed by many countries in 2005, but ratified by only 32. Since then many other nations have ratified the protocol, but America remains a significant absentee, although its 2007 Climate Security Act may finally bring America into the Kyoto fold.

    The goal of Carbon Trading was to set up a worldwide trade in Carbon Credits (CCs), designed around a standard market mechanism, so that greenhouse gas producers could be penalised while greenhouse gas consumers could be rewarded. While you might think that CCs only apply to carbon dioxide, there are actually six primary pollutants included in the scheme, and these include methane, CFCs and nitrous oxide. Significantly, the scheme also covers water (water vapour), but more on that later.

    So far, so good: we are saving the planet through capitalist market regulation, rather than government bureaucracy. But why choose a market-based system? Surely, if you want to penalise greenhouse gas emitters, you just measure their output and tax it; and then ring-fence those taxes for use on environmental projects. A tax of £5 per tonne of CO2 produced per year would soon get polluters adding scrubbers to their smoke stacks. So why the trading scheme?

    This is a good question. The answer cannot simply be that the current generation of politicians are so firmly wedded to capitalist markets, that everything has to be done that way; it has to be that Carbon Trading is simply another method of inflating the economies of the world, because it creates money. But how does it do that? Well, markets can be created in anything. Airlines trade ‘landing slots’ at Heathrow, and these have matured into a market all of their own, and are now regarded as legitimate ‘money’. And lots of money at that. In 2004, Qantas bought two Heathrow slots at $16 million each. In October, Lufthansa bought 50% of BMI for about £320 million. So why buy a small airline for such a huge sum at the beginning of a slump in the airline industry? Answer: they were not interested in BMI, they were buying their Heathrow landing slots, which they will now add to their financial balance sheets. But this is all fresh air accounting, because landing slots have no real value. If Heathrow were to build another two runways, or move to the Thames estuary, those slots would be worth about 35p each, and Lufthansa would have made a poor purchase.

    So how does Carbon Trading create money? Well, industries and polluters were originally given ‘grandfather rights’ – free Carbon Credits (CCs) that reflected their past emissions output. These CCs were then traded through London brokers, and acquired a value – they became ‘money’. But this had the perverse effect of rewarding the largest polluters, by giving them the most CCs (the most ‘money’). In addition, it was very difficult to regulate how many CCs were given to each and every industry around the world, so individual plant managers, especially in India and China, made hugely inflated claims about their emissions, in order to get a larger allocation of ‘grandfather’ CCs. These CCs were then traded on the open market and brought in huge profits (of ‘real’ money) for these unscrupulous companies. As usual, Britain played by the rules of cricket and got nothing.

    The net effect of this new market in CCs, is to create a whole new raft of ‘money units’. Some money units are called pounds, some dollars, its just that these ‘money units’ are called Carbon Credits (CCs), for they have achieved the status of ‘real money’. But like landing-slots at Heathrow, CCs are fresh-air money-units that are adding to the global over-supply of fiat (or false) money. These are some of the false ‘money units’ that banks have invested so heavily in, and are now finding to be as worthless as American ‘sub-prime money units’; which is why the banks have great holes in their financial accounts and we now have a credit crunch.

    But this is not the only problem, for the whole concept of a Carbon Trading Market is perverse. For example, refrigeration manufacturers in India and China were given huge numbers of Carbon Credits (CCs) because their CFC emissions were hugely polluting. Subsequently, these manufacturers installed scrubbers to reduce CFC emissions, and then sold their excess CCs on the global market for around £4 billion. Planet saved? A success story? No! It would only have cost an international fund about £150 million to install scrubbers on these polluters, so these companies have pocketed an obscene profit. In addition, they have sold on the ‘right to pollute’ to other companies (by selling their CCs), and so now that pollution will be transferred from China and India to, say, America or Brazil. Trading Carbon Credits does not reduce greenhouse gasses, it just spreads them around a bit.

    In addition, the Clean Development Mechanism creates yet more CCs – more ‘rights to pollute’. If, say, a company wants to build a CO2 consuming industry, like ‘carbon capture’ technology, it can be issued with new CCs – new rights to pollute. Now you might think that this is good, because atmospheric CO2 is being reduced by these new technologies, but David Victor, a carbon analyst of Stanford University, estimates that 60% of emission reduction or capture schemes are fraudulent. But new CCs have been issued, and new rights to pollute have been created, so that China and Russia can continue pumping out yet more noxious gasses.

    Even the one or two honest Clean Development Mechanisms are probably a waste of time. Many of these schemes for ‘carbon capture’ involve planting trees, which at face value might seem like a worthwhile enterprise. However, trees do not capture CO2 unless you bury them. As trees grow they consume (capture) CO2; but many trees burn in wild-fires or simply die and rot, releasing their CO2 back into the atmosphere, so no CO2 has been captured. If the wood is logged and used as timber, it will eventually find its way onto a rubbish dump or fire at the end of its useful life, and so the CO2 is again released. The only way to capture CO2 through trees is to bury the timber, which I have not heard proposed as yet. But even if this is done, some bright environmentalist spark will point out that these buried trees are producing methane, which can be used for generating electricity. A good idea? No, because the tree’s CO2 will simply be released back into the atmosphere. Trees are only a temporary storage media for CO2, not a solution for rising atmospheric CO2 levels.

    Then there is the issue of the current price of CCs. It has been estimated that in order to be punitive to polluters, each CC should be valued at around £30 to £40. However, there is so much fraud in the CC market, with millions of CCs being created on the back of creative accounting, that the price of each CC has slumped. They currently stand at around £12 each, and so it is now cheaper to buy CCs and pollute, rather than invest in new technology to reduce emissions. And even if you do reduce your emissions, you can then sell on your excess CCs so that someone else can pollute instead. In short, Carbon Trading does nothing to reduce overall emissions output. Indeed, in June 2008 SmartMoney magazine stated that Carbon Trading was the ‘ultimate rigged market’, and that the value of CCs was not simply regulated by market forces but also by the fortunes of the various Green movements. When Al Gore jumped on the bandwagon prices rose, when his arguments were torn to shreds they fell. This is not a market that will regulate or have any hope in reducing greenhouse gasses.

    So now we come to the whole crux of this fraudulent Carbon Trading market, the great unspoken issue of water vapour. A while back I said that Carbon Trading covers all the major greenhouse gasses, including water vapour; but water vapour has been brushed aside, as it it almost wholly natural in origin. But why do we have the mention of water vapour at all? Well, the great unspoken scientific fact is that water vapour is the greatest greenhouse gas of them all. Yes, pure, unadulterated, ‘harmless’ water is the greatest evil of our time. As a political sound-bite this does not really have the right ring to it, and so it has been dropped in favour of the rather insignificant influence of CO2 and the dreaded ‘carbon footprint’.

    In actual fact, water vapour accounts for 60% of the total greenhouse effect on the Earth; and if we include the action of clouds, which are also greenhouse ‘gasses’, water produces 90 – 95% of the total greenhouse effect. If we then recall that man only accounts for 5% of total annual CO2 emissions, then it suddenly becomes obvious that man is only accountable for 0.25% of greenhouse gasses. In other words, man’s effect on the environment is miniscule in comparison to the expansive forces of nature.

    A counter argument is that our small effect is cumulative – that our contribution of CO2 is building up over the years and is becoming significant. This is not necessarily so. There is considerable interchange every year between atmospheric CO2 and the CO2 dissolved in the oceans, and man’s annual CO2 production represents only about 6% of the annual churn of CO2 between sea and sky. So why is the total proportion of atmospheric CO2 increasing? Is this the result of industrial pollution? Probably not. It is a known scientific fact that CO2 is given off by the oceans as they warm, and the oceans have indeed been warming over the last four decades, and so this atmospheric CO2 increase is both natural and predictable. But why are the oceans warming? The BBC jumped upon a 2005 report by the American Association for the Advancement of Science which claimed that ocean warming was caused by CO2 emissions and Global Warming. But every indicator, from the great ice ages onwards, indicates that CO2 concentrations lag behind sea temperature. In other words, changes in sea temperature cause atmospheric CO2 levels to fluctuate, and not vice verse.

    It is a fact that sea temperatures have been rising over the last four or five decades and this increase is often blamed upon Global Warming.
    http://www.csiro.au/news/OceansWarming.html.

    But Global Warming may well be a symptom, not a cause of this warming. So what other factors can warm the sea to such a degree, that it is emitting more CO2 than it absorbs. Two factors are likely to be in play here: solar output and ocean currents. In the first of these, it is a known fact that solar output has slowly increased over the last century, and it may be this increasing solar activity that is warming the oceans. This increase has plateaued recently, but more on that later.
    http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/sun_output_030320.html
    http://solar-center.stanford.edu/sun-on-earth/glob-warm.html

    It is also a scientific fact that the sea currents undergo periodic changes in direction and temperature, and that oceanic temperature rises can be symptomatic of these periodic fluctuations. El Nino and La Nina are the most famous of these oceanic oscillations. This general warming trend, in both Sun and sea, can then induce a ‘positive feedback’ mechanism, whereby the increased sea temperature then increases atmospheric water vapour and CO2 concentrations, which are both significant greenhouse gasses – and so the warming trend continues up to a natural maximum limit. Another of these oceanic fluctuations is called the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, and Prof Don Easterbrook of Washington University has recently suggested that the limit of its recent warming trend has been reached in the Pacific. In fact, he goes on to speculate that the entire Global Warming phenomena may also be at an end, and that we face three decades of Global Cooling.
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/07/20/shifting-of-the-pacific-decadal-oscillation-from-its-warm-mode-to-cool-mode-assures-global-cooling-for-the-next-three-decades/
    http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Newsroom/view.php?old=2006092123135

    Global Cooling? But we all know that the Earth and its atmosphere are still warming, don’t we? While governmental and environmentalist propaganda (and the BBC) may still be promoting the Global Warming scam, the Inconvenient Truth of the matter is that the world has been cooling for the last ten years. Yes, surprising as it may seem, the Earth reached its maximum average temperature in 1998, and has been cooling ever since. This is why some of the more evasive environmentalists now refer to ‘Climate Change’ rather than ‘Global Warming’, because they cannot substantiate the latter title, while the former is indisputable – the climate is always changing. But in which direction?
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/02/19/another-global-temp-index-dives-in-jan08-this-time-hadcrut/
    http://digitaldiatribes.wordpress.com/2008/09/28/september-2008-update-on-global-temperature-hadcrut/

    The data shows a clear dip in global temperatures following the 1998 peak, but the real question is where do temperatures go from here? A dip in temperatures over ten years, following a steady rise over previous decades, does not prove a reversal. This could be a short-lived blip in an upward trend that will continue unabated in subsequent years, perhaps because it coincides with a periodic dip in solar output due to the Sun-spot cycle. However, within that casual suggestion lies a greater possibility, for it is a little-known fact that the best link between a global variable and observed global temperatures lies not between temperature and CO2 levels, but between temperature and geomagnetism. (see graph**) So how does geomagnetism influence global temperatures? Well, geomagnetic activity is directly proportional to sunspot activity and the resulting levels of solar-wind, which Prof Landscheit suggests is the prime ‘forcing agent’ of global warming.

    However, Prof Landscheit and others suggest that the general upward trend that has been witnessed in Solar-wind output this century is now beginning to decline; and, due to periodic cycles in the spin characteristics of the Sun, it is further predicted that this will result in three decades of decreasing solar-wind and decreasing global temperatures. In addition, the data from the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, the change in ocean currents in the Pacific, also suggests a distinct cooling period. But if sea temperatures cool, more CO2 will be absorbed by the world’s oceans and a reversed feedback loop may well establish itself. As Prof Don Easterbrook suggests, the observed oceanic cooling in the Pacific may herald three decades of Global Cooling, a cooling that will be in sympathy with the decline in solar activity.

    This process may already be in action, as the ice sheets in the Antarctic have grown to unprecedented levels in recent years. Yes, ice-sheets growing! Now you don’t hear about that on the BBC.
    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=3066
    http://www.scienceagogo.com/news/20020015034521data_trunc_sys.shtml

    The reason you may not have heard about all of this, is that we live in a world propaganda bubble that has all the attributes of a New Age religion, including its established doctrines that cannot be challenged and its Al Gore-style high priesthood. This may initially appear to be a media bubble organised by a media elite, who all worship the same environmentalist god, which is why the BBC now appears to blame anything and everything on Global Warming. There is some truth to this, as the media likes to tell a story and exaggerate, to keep its viewers enthralled, and this is a never-ending news story that can be exaggerated indefinitely right up to Hollywood proportions.
    http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=Io-Tb7vTamY&feature=related

    However, The Global Warming swindle is a governmental bubble too. If you really want to ‘follow the money’, it does not lead back to greedy oil companies, who are more than happy to invest in wind-power if there is money to be made there instead. No, the money trail leads back to the governments of this world, who have been cooperating to a remarkable degree to undermine scientific debate and honesty. Why? Because of fear and taxes. Governments always like to keep their people in fear of something, because they will then seek protection – from the government. Keep the people fearful and thus keep them docile. Its good for taxes too – how else could a government force through huge increases in taxes on basics, like oil and energy?
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Great_Global_Warming_Swindle
    http://www.opinionjournal.com/extra/?id=110008220
    http://www.climatechangefraud.com/content/view/2679/218/

    Meanwhile, back at the financial dealing desks for Carbon Credits, another commodity is about to crash. But perhaps I should not use the term ‘commodity’, for Carbon Credits (CCs) are an abstract construct that have even less contact with the real world than our over-inflated monetary systems. If there was ever an emperor with no clothes, it is a carbon trader declaring that a CC is worth £30 or £20 or £10, or any other figure that he or she may invent. CCs are a new pyramid selling scheme, that only survives as long as someone is promoting it and as long as there are more gullible customers pilling into this new market. But there are not. A small element of science is beginning to doubt the Global Warming trends, fraud has destabilised the Carbon Trading market, and a global recession will flood this already unsteady market with millions of unwanted CCs. The price of a CC is about to fall through the floor, and I expect that the whole concept of a Carbon Trading market will fall over the cliff with it.

    So where do we go from here? Well, while I remain to be convinced that Global Warming is anything other than a governmental con-trick, to increase taxes and the general money supply, the notion of controlling industrial emissions is a noble one. The simplest method of doing this would be through taxes, and so a tax on everything from sulphur dioxide to heavy metals emissions should be levied on industry. But there is absolutely no point in doing this if we are the only nation to play by the rules, as we will only succeed in driving our industry towards bankruptcy. We have already achieved this with our multitude of planning regulations, disabled access, health and safety directives and existing emissions regulations, which have driven our factories to India and China, where no such regulations exist. What, I ask you, is the point of proclaiming that our factories are now 100% healthy and safe (because they now stand empty), while millions of Chinese are being injured and maimed to make the products we buy? Where are the overall health and safety benefits in that strategy? Ditto our export of noxious emissions to China, which often find their way back to us in the form of polluted fish and acid rains.

    But if we cannot rely on the Far East to play by international rules, then the alternative is a degree of protectionism, a policy that the party already endorses. While I personally believe that international trade is good for us and the wider world, it can only exist and prosper when the playing-field is level. Clearly, the pitch upon which we play the trade-game with China is sloped at a 30 degree angle towards our goal-mouth, so it is hardly surprising that we cannot score any trade goals against China. The Chinese have no great regard for health and safety, emissions, planning, pay, health care or pensions, so it is hardly surprising that our industry cannot compete. What is required is a 10% import tax for each of these items, and more besides, until China gets its industrial house in order. Only then will China, India and the rest of the Far East adopt Western industrial standards, and only then will the worldwide emission of toxic chemicals from industry be reduced.

    We don’t need Carbon Trading, we need an element of protectionism.

    Ralph Ellis

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2006/04/09/do0907.xml&sSheet=/news/2006/04/09/ixworld.html

    ** Graph of geomagnetic activity (solid line) vs global temperatures (dotted line) Note the very good fit of these two trend lines. However, predictions (and recent measurements post 2000) indicate a rapid decline in geomagnetic activity. This should result in a decline in global temperatures from 2006 onwards (there is a lag of about 6 years between geomagnetic activity and global temperatures). Recent global temperatures have confirmed this decline. http://landscheidt.auditblogs.com/archives/24

    P.S. In the Sunday Times on 21st December, it was mentioned that Norway’s DNV company, the largest auditor of the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), has been ‘suspended’.

    The CDM is the mechanism by which carbon reduction projects are issued with new Carbon Credits (CCs) for their ‘good’ work in reducing CO2. These CCs can then be traded on the market for real cash. Thus DNV was actually the ‘bank of carbon credits’ – it acted like a commercial bank, but printed CCs instead of dollars.

    For DNV to be suspended means that there must be either either incompetence, corruption or fraud at the heart of the CC issuing and trading scheme (or all three), and so we are likely to see a complete collapse of this ridiculous scheme in the near future (it is wide-open to corruption and fraud). This, together with 2008 being the coldest year this century, indicates that this is the beginning of the demise of the whole Global Warming confidence trick. On the upside, any political party that has tied their banner to this wobbly mast (that’s all of them) is likely to be severely wounded in the resulting wreckage, which may reduce Labour’s results at the next election.

  109. This is exactly what I was afraid of. Remember those CO2 satellites? Apparently those are being used to manage the tax, science is a detail.

  110. I am just waiting until the Governement figures out a way to tax the tax. Step right up and pay a tax on the tax that you just paid.

    Rollerball

  111. .
    >> OT… “75-megawatt solar plant to power “first solar city” in Florida”…

    You mean the first city powered only when the Sun shines, and totally useless at any other time or season.

  112. So, does “no-till” mean no food is planted? If the answer is yes, then won’t food prices rise because there is less of it?

  113. Ellie, there seems to be a reason N2O stories never make it into the 2nd day’s news cycle; N2O is measured in the atmosphere as 314 parts per Billion.

    With 250 Years of Industrialization, expanding agriculture, adding hundreds of millions of trucks, tractors, and cars, etc. we’ve managed to add a Whopping 44 ppb.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenhouse_gas

    If we were to, somehow, manage to add another 44ppb, which seems highly unlikely, it would be the equivalent to approx. 5 ppm of CO2. oombawa!

  114. I guess everyone who doesn’t pay taxes is getting a refund of about eight bucks a week which equals about four hundred bucks a year. Good thing too, because they’re gonna need it to pay for doubled utility bills and doubled gasoline prices.
    Oh wait… it won’t be enough will it? Maybe we can give them all those nice houses that they couldn’t pay for. See how easy economics is?

  115. Gary Gulrud said: …yet how rare are people of farmer Steve’s moral calibre.

    And that right there, may be the whole crux of the matter….moral caliber.

  116. Kum,
    thanks for pointing that out. Looks like I fall for hyped up stuff too. I am very peripherally involved in a project where people are worrying about this. I haven’t paid it much attention and I’ve just accepted their say so that it was important. I think I am going to enjoy asking some very pointed questions next time we all get together.

  117. Ralph Ellis – thanks, enjoyed that! I wonder if there is any chance of this whole scheme getting cancelled with a major CC buyback at issue value? ;0

    Agree your thoughts re:regulation – keep it simple. Top level limits with a “meet or cease trade” condition.

  118. ” Steven Hill (07:27:29) :

    I am just waiting until the Governement figures out a way to tax the tax. Step right up and pay a tax on the tax that you just paid.”

    Our government already does that with

    1) tax on alcohol.

    2) tax on fuel

    3) tax on purchase of cars.

    These taxes are added to the price, THEN they tax the total with Value added tax!

    DaveE.

  119. Actually, the carbon tax will be added to our bills nett of V.A.T., so we will be taxed on tax AGAIN!

    DaveE.

  120. Here is another look at the tremendous rise at the business end of the hockey stick… This is really scary… NOT

  121. I am an Indian and lives in rural surrondings of Punjab India.
    Really nice to read the Farmer’s view.

    All over the world, the farmers have a same attitude and 99$ are having very morale & ethical values. As they say in Punjab India –

    A Farmer is simple but not stupid.

    I am working as Branch Manager in a commerical bank and trying my level best to elevate the educational and financial status of the farmers of my command area.

  122. “Smokey (12:43)

    My Dad had a 400 acre dairy farm, he would have been the expert, not me. But, the article you cite states corn likes cool weather. That runs contrary to my experience (and I gather yours). For corn we always wanted hot weather and warm nights. This seems like another example of someone making up facts to suit their agenda. In cool years my brothers have been concerned with getting corn to maturity before the frost. Any other opinions out there?”

    Kind of depends on where you are located. “Here” we like it to get below 80 at night. High temps(say 100) during the day, and mid 80’s at night really stresses the corn. If you are further north, say, Wisconsin or NY, then your conditions are quite a bit different.

  123. Corn has a long growing season and thrives in the heat and humidity.

    This year the midwest is having a cold spring which may result in late planting. Then the farmers will need to switch to soybeans.

  124. I have been buying organic milk for a while, I think it tastes better and doesn’t give me the sinus problems that regular milk does. I pay more for that product, but it is my choice. If farmers like Steve would label their products as “Carbon Credit Free”, or “No carbon credits were used in the production of this wheat.” They would get my support. I mean that as voluntary labeling, but I think the gov’ment would force those who do not comply to be labeled as a discouragement. “Climate Generals Warning: This company does not participate in the Cap and Trade economy. Use at your own risk.”

  125. Any of you farmers who have actually done this – or studied its effectiveness, would you comment on what the crop yields were? (Better? Worse? No Difference?)

    The Carbon Credit Program of the North Dakota Farmer’s Union says:

    How accepted is “No Till” Cropping and Prescribed Grazing?

    Modern crop rotations, herbicide resistant crops, conservation tillage equipment improvements, more targeted herbicides, and improved crop varieties have all advanced the success of no-till cropping in the U.S. and Canada. Today’s modern seeding equipment is capable of placing seed, fertilizer, and sometimes various chemicals precisely into optimum conditions without tilling the soil first. Along with storing carbon in the soil, no-till provides substantial fuel savings, improves soil tilth, water storage and water efficiency, and reduces soil erosion.

    Granted, there are heavier soils that are not as well suited to no-till production and some form of reduced tillage may still be needed to get the soils to dry out and warm up for timely spring planting. So, no-till cropping has not been universally accepted nationally, but it certainly has been used on many acres in the central and northern plains and in other areas as well.

    There’s a little more (but not much) in the Anthony’s “Program” link (above). Have they actually researched the effectiveness of this type of farming?

  126. Nasif Nahle (21:27:56) : John F. Hultquist (17:40:49) : and anyone else having trouble with, or explaining, the HTML here.
    Choose a line you wish to copy or duplicate, such as a link. Go to “View” on the top tool bar, then “View Source” (Firefox) or just “Source” (I.E.), then F4 to find that line in the source code. All will be revealed…

  127. Oh, the farmer and these cowboys should not be friends…
    One man likes to push a plough, the other likes to chase a cash cow…

    Take it away, Okalahoma!

  128. Had Diogenes lived today he would have died contented. Farmer Steve is an honest man. I hope he isn’t an anomaly.

  129. I live across from Detroit, Michigan in Canada and all the farmers around here no till farm and have been doing no till for years. Works fine and is a lot less expensive and time consuming.

    One of the main reasons to plow was to kill off insects and weeds by turning up the soil for the Winter. No with modern chemicals, weeds and insects are easily controlled with a little chemical warfare.

  130. Shawn, comparing Prairie Farming to Ontario hobby farms is like comparing apples to Rubik’s Cubes.

  131. Codetech

    Little old France grows more wheat than Canada. The mighty prairies aren’t so mighty.

    We produce far better crops around here than the prairie farmers could dream of.

    Corn, soybeans, tomatoes, vegetables, fruits, etc. Stuff you can’t grow on the frozen prairies.

  132. Shawn Whelan (07:23:00) :

    Codetech

    “Little old France grows more wheat than Canada. The mighty prairies aren’t so mighty.

    We produce far better crops around here than the prairie farmers could dream of.

    Corn, soybeans, tomatoes, vegetables, fruits, etc. Stuff you can’t grow on the frozen prairies”.

    Yes Codetech, this is all correct but we have to take a close look at the agricultural history of France.

    In the colder periods France was hit by severe crop loss due to cold and wet weather conditions.

    These conditions triggered the French Revolution when hungry people took to the streets.

    We are facing similar conditions short term world wide as the current cooling process continues.

    With more mouths to feed and ample food reserves available and politicians blinded by the hoax of run away Global Warming a real disaster is in the making.

  133. I live across from Detroit, Michigan in Canada and all the farmers around here no till farm and have been doing no till for years. Works fine and is a lot less expensive and time consuming.

    One of the main reasons to plow was to kill off insects and weeds by turning up the soil for the Winter. No with modern chemicals, weeds and insects are easily controlled with a little chemical warfare.

    I’m sure there is a lot of truth to this.

    But since we’re talking about a major change in conventional farming methods, I’d think the advocates might want to demonstrate — no, proove its effectiveness irrefutably. Otherwise, Ag offices should be running “experimental” farms to get the answers.

    I’ll post two bits from Wickipedia:

    As defined by the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service strip-tillage should till no more than 1/4 of the field area.</blockquote

    Sounds to me like soil productivity is pretty seriously compromised by this method. I’d have to know more, but at its most basic, aren’t we talking about a method of farming use a few millennia ago, before the plow was invented?

    A man walks along some moist bottomland near the river carrying a long wooden stick sharpened at one end. He stops periodially, lifts the stick overhead and jabs it down into the ground, forming a “pocket” of compact soil. He drops a few seeds in, sloshes in some water from the skin hanging over his shoulder, kneels, and smooths over the hole. Standing, he tamps this mound down with his bare foot, then moves on, keeping a sharp eye out for sabertooth tigers and his wandering mate, who seems to like some guy in the cave downriver. Seems he’s got this new-fangled thing that turns over the soil. (Ahh, shoot! I’m getting ahead of myself. That hasn’t been invented yet!)

    An interestingly-brief line from Wiki (may have been from a contrarian who disagreed with the otherwise approving descriptions of “no-till”):

    However, newer research shows that no-till may not improve carbon sequestration, as preliminary research did not sample soil deep enough to measure the soil carbon flux completely[3].

    Where’s the research demonstrating yields? Comparing two adjacent fields over several years?

    What are those relative yields?
    What is the soil productivity?
    What crops could successfully be raised?
    What herbicides and pesticides were needed in both fields?
    What was the investment in machinery?
    What was the difference in labor specifically?

    Sorry, till some of this is shown, I have to conclude this is just another brain fart of the environmentalists. A little less fiber and a few more basic nutrients, please!

  134. I don’t know any farmers around here that don’t use no till, although they still work the soil sometimes.

    They no till farm to save money and it works just as well at a lower cost. The only downside is that you need the chemicals to no till.

    No till is not something new.

  135. Oklahoma Winter Wheat and Spring Freeze
    Today’s Earth Science Picture of the Day.
    http://epod.usra.edu/

    Earth Science Picture of the Day for April 14, 2009

    Like a lot of people, after a moderate February and March the last thing I want is any more cold weather. I think it’s spring! Well, wheat is the same way. Give it warm weather in late-winter (see chart below) and the last thing the plants need is a dose of really cold weather. When it is abnormally warm, the plants rev up their maturation schedule and become more vulnerable to freeze events. Unfortunately, that scenario played out in Oklahoma earlier this month during a spell of unusually cold weather. The moisture was much needed, but the cold was not. Wheat damage from the frigid weather following the storm resulted in various levels of injury from cosmetic damage to total sterility.

    As shown above on the above freeze duration map from the Oklahoma Mesonet, temperatures dipped below freezing across the entire state the nights of April 5-7, in some places for 20 hours or more. Obviously, the colder and longer the freezing temps occur the worse the damage will be. It’s not just wheat that can be damaged; any vulnerable crops, including those of an ornamental variety in urban settings, are at risk during these types of cold snaps.

  136. No-till Farming In Dryland Cropping Systems, University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources

    http://cropwatch.unl.edu/input$/no-till.htm

    Advantages of No-till

    Advantages to no-till farming include time, labor and fuel savings, reduced wear and tear on machinery, better plant stands due to improving soil tilth (less soil crusting), reduced soil erosion, reduced soil water evaporation, increased water infiltration into the soil and increased soil organic matter levels over time. There are other environmental benefits to no-till farming, but the main reasons why many farmers are no-tilling dryland crops is because of the potential for higher yields in low rainfall years, timeliness in planting and being able to expand farming operations.

    and

    No-till Trial, UNL Rogers Memorial Farm

    There is an ongoing long-term tillage system study on the University of Nebraska Rogers Memorial Farm (8 miles east of Lincoln). It uses a corn/soybean rotation (was sorghum/soybean) and compares no-till yields to those from different tillage practice. These research plots have shown that long-term, continuous no-till has better soil structure, more residue cover and less surface crusting than conventional tillage. The long-term no-till plots have improved water infiltration rates and reduced runoff, making rainfall more effective. With no tillage operations, better soil structure, and higher yields, UNL researcher Paul Jasa says no-till is the most profitable tillage system. The yield results from 1986 to 2004 for sorghum/soybeans and from 2005 to 2008 for corn/soybeans are in Table 1.

    Conclusions: The “no-till drill” beats walking through the field with a pointed stick and a bag of einkorn seed.

  137. One smart farmer.

    It’s time to scrap cap & tax and anything else to do with the global warming scam.

  138. ‘Farmer Steve’ is smarter than 99% of the politicians, journalists and college professors in this world. We should thank him for his integrity and ethics.

  139. Cassandra King (09:59:54) :

    Here you have the capitalist holy grail, a product that costs nothing to produce giving a 100% return with no outlay, no wonder the money grubbers are loving this latest snake oil scam, they are trading thin air and who pays in the end? the individual consumer of course.
    The carbon traders/the UN/governments will make lots of money and that I fear is the prime motivator here, carbon traders stand to rake in billions and the administration costs will be huge, the UN will increase its income stream and power and the governments will make lots in taxes, everybody wins eh? Well not quite everyone, ordinary people will suffer hugely but who cares about them? certainly not the snake oil salesmen thats for sure.

    Sorry Cassandra, this isn’t capitalism, it’s rent-seeking. It’s the opposite of capitalism. These companies are lobbying to have the government force these schemes upon us. Capitalism does not rely upon coercion, but instead relies upon free people acting upon their own free will.

    Progressive like hide behind words like ‘industrial policy’ when hatching these schemes. A better word for it is ‘extortion’.

  140. This is great I found this yesterday 6th of May on the 5th of May I called the people we signed up for carbon credits a year ago. When we signed up our farm I knew it was a scam. But at the time I thought it was a bunch of Al Gore people living in big house’s feeling guilty and buying green tags. Al Gore himself said I use 11,000 in electricity and buy carbon credits. So we thought if it makes them feel better to pay us for nothing??? Who are we to deny them the opportunity to feel good about them selfs (heaven knows they need something). Well then all this Cap and Trade came out. I called last summer (after WA wanted to pass a state Cap and Trade) to cancel contract and got talked out of it by company but told I could still cancel prior to sell. So on the 5th MAy I called again to cancel. Got the big guy on the phone, he said that these credits aren’t for the coming federal laws those won’t come in until 2013. These credit are going to be bought up by companies like Ford who volunteered to lower their footprint. I asked him who pays Ford?? He said this will help farmers offset some of the carbon taxes in the future. We went round and round I told him that it was a scam. We would be going along with this whole scam if we took this money. And is it fair to get money for this and my kids and friends how live in apts. pay by higher energy and car prices and everything… And it was wrong period. I was told that I would get a bill for my share of the verifying cost and he would get back to me on the cost to cancel. I told him fine. And will write back when I get the bill.

  141. I live in texas and a land owner. I have been approached about carbon credits from the Fedaral Goverment. It looks like to me they want to pay me 5 dollars per acre and then in turn sell these credits to carbon producing power plants at a much higher rate. Also trade these credits on the open market. This really looks like you might see more coal fired power plants getting built. We will to go back to living off wild game.

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