EPA's Jackson and Energy Sec. Chu on the Senate hot seat

In case you missed the debate on the Senate floor today over the Waxman-Markey bill, here is a video segment of interest.

Jackson agrees that the USA effect on global CO2 would be minimal, Chu does not.

Washington, D.C.-During a hearing today in the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, EPA Administrator Jackson confirmed an EPA analysis showing that unilateral U.S. action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions would have no effect on climate.  Moreover, when presented with an EPA chart depicting that outcome, Energy Secretary Steven Chu said he disagreed with EPA’s analysis.

“I believe the central parts of the [EPA] chart are that U.S. action alone will not impact world CO2 levels,” Administrator Jackson said.

Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) presented the chart to both Jackson and Secretary Chu, which shows that meaningful emissions reductions cannot occur without aggressive action by China, India, and other developing countries. 

“I am encouraged that Administrator Jackson agrees that unilateral action by the U.S. will be all cost for no climate gain,” Sen. Inhofe said.  “With China and India recently issuing statements of defiant opposition to mandatory emissions controls, acting alone through the job-killing Waxman-Markey bill would impose severe economic burdens on American consumers, businesses, and families, all without any impact on climate.”

Along with Administrator Jackson’s statement, Energy Secretary Chu responded with an unequivocal “no” when asked whether he agrees with the analysis depicted in the EPA chart.  “No, I don’t’ agree with that [EPA] chart,” Chu asserted.

“I was somewhat surprised that Secretary Chu disagreed with EPA’s analysis of what would happen if the U.S. acts alone to address climate change, which cap-and-trade supporters claim is a global problem,” Sen. Inhofe said.  “EPA’s analysis that global greenhouse gas emission levels can only be stabilized with meaningful, mandatory action by China and India is widely accepted.  I extend an invitation to the Secretary to see whether he wants to clarify his remarks.”

Source: EPW


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UK Sceptic

And what incontrovertible proof does Chu offer to support his off the cuff claim?
Answers on the back of a postage stamp please…

Keith Minto

At a recent Senate committee hearing in the Australian Parliament,our very own ETS Architect Prof. Ross Garnaut was asked a similar question, “If Australia ceased emitting CO2,would it make any difference to world CO2 levels”. His answer was “No, but politically it will make a big difference”.
There you have it, science is on the back burner, political correctness is in.

“I extend an invitation to the Secretary to see whether he wants to clarify his remarks.”
How do you clarify “no”? I thought it was pretty clear.


[snip – ad hom]


This just in over the wire:

Reuters — Drafts for a meeting of the 17-nation MEF at the G8 in Italy have dropped any reference to the goal of halving C02 by 2050.



Actually, nobody has proven that we are even responsible for the rise in atmospheric CO2, which historically has followed warming, not preceded it.
So, that chart is pure fantasy, whether anyone “agrees” with it or not. Okay, maybe not fantasy, but certainly conjecture.

Rainer Link, PhD

Of Course EPA Administrator Jackson´s statement is correct.
This can be shown easily:
The USA are planning to reduce their CO2 Emissions by 20 % up to the year 2020 on the basis of 2005.
The total emission in 2006 of the US is roughly 20% of the world’s emission, with decreasing fraction because of the increase in India, China, and Russia.
Every year the atmospheric CO2 increase is about 2 ppmV/year (Mauna Loa measurement). In 15 years this sums up to 30 ppmV globally.
The part belonging to the US (20%) is therefore 6 ppmV.
The anticipated reduction of 20% amounts to 1,2 ppmV.
According to IPCC the global temperature increase is 3°C while doubling the CO2 from pre industrial 280 ppmV to 560 ppmV, which is for an increase of 280ppmV.
(Obviously the global temperature increase will be much lower if natural variations like the activity of the sun are considered)
Therefore the US are reducing the global temperature up to 2020 by
3°C x 1,2 ppmV/280 ppmV = 0,013°C !!!
(Remark: Indeed it is a factor of 1/ln2 = 1,44 higher, if instead of a linear approach the correct logarithmic dependence of temperature on CO2 concentration is assumed.)
This indeed is a negligible even immeasurable contribution.
It is an easy task to calculate with different reductions in CO2.


Neil, you have to realize that “do you wish to clarify your remarks” is bureaucrateese for “do you have anything that leads you to that conclusion?” Obviously Dr. Chuless doesn’t or he would have elaborated on his “no” without coaxing.

I like Inhofe. Keep up the info pressure, and the bill won’t make it through Senate. People are still ignorant.
Not entirely OT. The link is, clear unequivocal graphs from supposedly trustworthy sources about key items of the science: With falling temperatures globally, I would expect ocean heat content to show signs of decrease – and I hope someone is able to keep an independent watch on the Mauna Loa CO2 measurements since currently that seems to be a monopoly and another potential source of data fudging.


Great point…
The “I don’t move as long as nobody moves”-approach is surely constructive and a clear way to innovation and progress. The point is: EU already has such a plan, so it’s time you do something, folks. Here’s a short story for you…
Nasreddin was seating next to a traveller, under a tree. The traveller then asked him:
– “Nasreddin Hodja, how much time does it take to reach the next city?”
– “Walk!” was Nasreddin’s answer.
– “I’m asking you how much time it would take me to reach the next city, old man, not how to reach it”
– “I said: walk!”
The traveller, thinking Nasreddin was obviously deaf as a post, shouted:
– “In how much time…”
– “I told you to just walk” said Nasreddin, interrupting him.
The traveller stood up and left, insulting the old man. A few seconds later, Nasreddin turned to him and said:
– “At this rate, it should take you two hours”.
Get it?


“How do you clarify “no”? I thought it was pretty clear.”
No, but….


Neil Shearing (00:22:46): How do you clarify “no”? I thought it was pretty clear.
You have it backwards. You cannot clarify a yes, but you should clarify a no explaining why you disagree. Just trying to get links are you? Links are more helpful when you say something smart. — John Reynolds


Looks like Stephen Chu’s science degree isn’t worth much if he can’t do arithmetic.

Ron de Haan

crosspatch (00:49:50) :
This just in over the wire:
Reuters — Drafts for a meeting of the 17-nation MEF at the G8 in Italy have dropped any reference to the goal of halving C02 by 2050.
It was stated that there has been a big break through since the Chinese agree with to reduce global temperatures by 2 degree.
It looks like they will have their climate treaty, free money and the solution until 2050:
A combination of natural cooling and manipulation of the data sets.
A lot of countries are in desperate need of a new government and their populations a proper education.
Our Governments in control of earth’s thermostat! (virtual manipulation).


I think Dr. Chu was really just pissed at the argument that the US should not act, as others are not acting. I wished he had been more reasoned and less emotinal and put the senator in his place.
Though the EPA is correct, thought the details I am unsure, It is very likely that if in the future that is Emissions of greenhouse gases continue to rise unabated, and climate changes effects more dramatic, I would not put it past a nation like America taking unilatreal action and even sucombing to using geo-engineering projects. These are dangerous and hard to predict the effects off, but by that time may be only option. So in theory US action can solve whole problem, but it isn’t ideal.


Chu has to support his “no” with believable concrete reasoning (not hand waiving). If he cannot, he loses all credibility with me. That is, I won’t believe anything he says from now on (without concrete proof in hand).
Anyhow, I think Chu was a “political” appointment — picked because he supports the environmentalist agenda without “public” reservation. Being Dr. Chu gives him credibility with non-scientists — who make up the bulk of the House, Senate, Media, and Public. Won’t work with skeptical peers, however.


I think Chu was actually saying that he disagreed with the existence and presentation of the chart, rather than the informational content ( the Inconvenient Chart ). Or maybe it was just the colors he didn’t like.

anna v

crosspatch (00:49:50) :
This just in over the wire:
Reuters — Drafts for a meeting of the 17-nation MEF at the G8 in Italy have dropped any reference to the goal of halving C02 by 2050.

In addition this is a good laugh:
A draft prepared for the MEF meeting dropped any reference to this and aimed instead for agreement on the need to limit the average increase in global temperature to 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) since pre-industrial times.
It is amazing that politicians have been convinced they hold earth’s thermostat in their power !!!

smallz79(Brandon Sheffield)

OMG, what is happening to most of our supposed “leaders”? I think they ate to many vegies growing up even to this day. Some body give him a Medium Rare Steak so that he may realize the error of his remark.

Ron de Haan

The argument is made that the Climate Treaty is not effective if China does not submit to similar CO2 reductions.
Well, the Chinese will join a world wide climate treaty and the Senators will lose the argument.
They should question the science, the costs and the effects for the US economy before they discuss what other countries will do.
The US Senate must send the Climate Bill to the bin.


AGW is not about climate science at all. It is about political power.
AGW offers the same benefits for public policy as did eugenics.

Leon Brozyna

Do my ears deceive me?
Did Boxer tell Inhofe to direct his question first to Chu because he is a scientist? That seems a pretty lame criteria – as though being a scientist imparts some mystic aura of omniscience to any statement made by the person.

Michael D Smith

This little video segment might go a long way to defeating cap & tax if played for the average American. Chu should be made to elaborate on what exactly is wrong with that information.
That chart is completely bogus anyway (consider the source). Even with accelerating emissions, the higher atmospheric concentrations produce an accelerating absorption rate of CO2 emissions into the biosphere and the oceans. Net effect is a 1-negative exponential curve. The rate has to reverse and go toward asymptotic horizontal eventually as levels increase. This might explain the failure of CO2 levels to perform to to our grand masters’ instructions so far. 1000 year residence time? – uh huh Susan.


Chu’s one of the best examples of a highly educated idiot that I have ever seen.

Secretary Chu’s answer can be easily explained: he’s from California, where AB 32 is now the law. AB 32’s preface states that California alone cannot stop global warming, but California can and will *show the way* for the world to increase economic activity while reducing greenhouse gases.
Dr. Chu was a professor at University of California – Berkeley, and director of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Berkeley is the center of such beliefs.
AB 32’s goal of 80 percent reduction in GHGs by 2050 compared to 1990 levels requires a reduction from 1200 million metric tonnes per year down to 87 million metric tonnes per year. That is approximately a 93 percent reduction from the Business as Usual case, the 1200 figure above.
This is also consistent with the liberals’ desire to punish Western mankind by reducing our energy use by more than 90 percent. Our 20 tons CO2 per capita per year would then be reduced to 2 tons CO2 per capita per year, on a par with the undeveloped world.

A fuller version of the pledge-drop story:

G8 polluters drop pledge to cut emissions


Ron de Hann makes a good point.
AGW is so pernicious and infective an idea that we cannot rely on the Chinese to not fall for it, knowing they will not comply to it, but also knowing our leaders will comply.
The sooner AGW is stopped as a political power, the better for rational and thoughtful discourse.


Keith Minto 00:13:28

At a recent Senate committee hearing in the Australian Parliament,our very own ETS Architect Prof. Ross Garnaut was asked a similar question, “If Australia ceased emitting CO2,would it make any difference to world CO2 levels”. His answer was “No, but politically it will make a big difference”.
There you have it, science is on the back burner, political correctness is in.

His answer isn’t political correctness. His answer is a proper, honest assessment of the political impact of a political decision.
I’m surprised that Chu didn’t clarify his “no” with an explanation along the lines of “it’s difficult to convince India and China to do something if we don’t believe in it enough to do it ourselves”.
Even senators can figure out that 20% reduction of 20% of the total is only a 4% reduction of the total.

Pierre Gosselin

Pass the bill.
Feel the massive pain and intrusion.
And hopefully learn something about swindlers.
I see no other way for Americans to learn.

Pierre Gosselin

Stupid people have to learn the hard way.

Bill Illis

The Kyoto Protocol did not even make a dent in the CO2 numbers.
Most developed countries were expected to cut-back their emissions by 5% from 1990 levels by now. Some are reporting they have reached the target, but if this were true, there should have been a noticeably change in the CO2 trendlines – well there isn’t.
A lot of regulation, bureaucracy and economic dislocation has resulted from Kyoto without any benefits. Normally, that would be thought of as failing a cost-benefit test.


Charlie: your point is?

Jack Green

This reminds me of prohibition. It only lasted 1913 to 1933 and required amendments to the US constitution. I think we will have widespread cheating. Nobody likes to be forced to do something. This will be unpopular and will the survivor watching who wants to be a millionaire crowd will only learn under the government control.

Mike Kelley

The effects of imposing a massive energy tax on our present economy could well be catastrophic. The irony is that it is only our wealth that allows us to fret about such silliness as atmospheric CO2 in the first place. I can only hope that radical enviro-fascism becomes an early casualty if our economy collapses.


On one hand, It’s quite entertaining to watch idiots fiddle about with an impossible mission. While on the other, I think every discussion with the idiots should include the reminder that the entire theory is Bubkes. Eventually, the truth would gain favor simply because it’s easy, and EASY is what politicians do best. Then again, I must never underestimate the power of PC. “Mr Chuless, we see that your chart includes a number of pigs flying. Can pigs really fly? (since a congressman wouldn’t know without expert advice)” To which Chuless replies: “YES!”


Let’s change that Chu answer: “Yes!, because the president said so!”


@Pierre Gosselin (05:40:09) :
“Stupid people have to learn the hard way.”
Yeah, but… I don’t want to be taken down with them.


Leon Brozyna (04:35:45) :
Do my ears deceive me?

Bang on Leon! She kind of blew it on this one though.


Pierre Gosselin (05:39:45) :
Pass the bill.
Feel the massive pain and intrusion.
And hopefully learn something about swindlers.
I see no other way for Americans to learn.

Alas, you may be right. Some stupid people, however, may still not get it.


Charlie (05:21:45) : I think the real point is that we don’t need to reduce carbon emissions at all. What we really need is to build out nuclear so we can quit funding the Middle East – we will run out of economical oil at some point, but I see no reason to stop using oil and coal now.

BBC’s climate change blog – is the climate warming or cooling?

Bill Marsh

@ Pierre,
The problem is that once that is passed it will be with us for a long, long time. For example, in the US we paid the Spanish-American War Tax in our telephone bills (the name was changed to a ‘Federal excise tax’ to disguise it) from 1898 until 2006. Although the local call excise tax of 3% is still collected.


The Chu disagrees with the EPA.
Jackson disagrees with Chu.
They can’t both be correct.
They can both be incorrect.
Given some time, Sen Inhofe can dismantle their bluffs.
irony. If california can “show the Way” to the planet and lead us out of CO2 metabolism and combustion, can I stomp out starvation by “showing the way” and going out for lunch???
Remember 1 billion people on a 400 calorie diet maintains lower CO2 emissions. Waht about 2 billion on starvation diets? Remember is takes less calories to boil less rice. (and lower aerosol emissions)


“So in theory US action can solve whole problem, but it isn’t ideal.”
To do that would require defining what the “whole problem” is, if there is in fact any problem at all. It appears to be beyond our current level of comprehension of how the climate system works.
I’m just glad that those in the Victorian era did not decide to select our future for us…

Indiana Bones

Roger Carr (05:09:52) :
A fuller version of the pledge-drop story:
The source for this is AAP. Australian AP. AP has long been firmly in bed with the AGW clan, and therefor suspect in its reportage. For that matter, all MSM apparently emanates from a central source as it all adheres to “core messaging.”
If there is only one lesson learned from this exercise it may well be to read independent (blogs – NOT MSM) from opposite perspectives, to get at something like the truth.
On the other hand, a “pledge to keep warming under 2 degrees C?” Sure. If this were a virtual world and it only required programmatic input. Sheeesh!

Antonio San

OT but really, really funny:
HOUSTON – Plans for the world’s largest wind farm in the Texas Panhandle have been scrapped, energy baron T. Boone Pickens said Tuesday, and he’s looking for a home for 687 giant wind turbines.
Pickens has already ordered the turbines, which can stand 400 feet tall — taller than most 30-story buildings.
“When I start receiving those turbines, I’ve got to … like I said, my garage won’t hold them,” the legendary Texas oilman said. “They’ve got to go someplace.”
Pickens’ company Mesa Power ordered the turbines from General Electric Co. — a $2 billion investment — a little more than a year ago. Pickens said he has leases on about 200,000 acres in Texas that were planned for the project, and he might place some of the turbines there, but he’s also looking for smaller wind projects to participate in. He said he’s looking at potential sites in the Midwest and Canada.
In Texas, the problem lies in getting power from the proposed site in the Panhandle to a distribution system, Pickens said in an interview with The Associated Press in New York. He’d hoped to build his own transmission lines but he said there were technical problems.
Wind power is a big part of the “Pickens Plan,” which was announced a year ago Wednesday. Pickens has spent $60 million crisscrossing the country and buying advertising in an effort to reduce the nation’s reliance on foreign oil.
“It doesn’t mean that wind is dead,” said Pickens, who runs the Dallas-based energy investment fund BP Capital. “It just means we got a little bit too quick off the blocks.”
Pickens announced in 2007 plans to install the turbines in parts of four Texas Panhandle counties.
He had hoped to complete the four-phase project in 2014 and eventually have 4,000 megawatts of capacity, enough to power more than one million homes. The total cost was expected to approach $12 billion.
Renewable energy provides a small fraction of electricity used today, but the wind and solar sectors are the fastest growing in the U.S. In 2008, the U.S. became the world’s leading provider of wind power.
Like most industries around the world, the recession has hurt wind turbine manufacturers and wind farm developers. Companies have shelved development plans and laid off workers.”


I actually hope this bill passes. Maybe this will be the final straw that will wake the american people up so they can get these people out of congress. All of them. We need a reboot!


The UN is on the case….
Bonn Climate Change Talks – August 2009
The Ad Hoc Working Group on Further Commitments for Annex I Parties under the Kyoto Protocol (AWG-KP) and the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention (AWG-LCA) will hold intersessional informal consultations from 10 to 14 August 2009. The meetings will take place at the Hotel Maritim in Bonn,Germany.
The AWG-KP and AWG-LCA informal consultations are being held in order to facilitate the successful completion of the work of both Groups, and to enable COP 15/CMP 5 to reach an agreed outcome in Copenhagen in December 2009.

Ron de Haan

Pierre Gosselin (05:39:45) :
Pass the bill.
Feel the massive pain and intrusion.
And hopefully learn something about swindlers.
I see no other way for Americans to learn.
No Pierre
Why pass the bill?
Besides the argument of entirely fraudulent science, 56 % of Americans does NOT want to spend any money on Climate Change.
That is a MAJORITY.
Since when is a majority of the people not respected?
Waxman promises the opposite, increased costs all over the place.
There is no basis for this climate bill among the US public so send it to the bin.

Bruce Cobb

The EPA really needs to get their act together with that chart, keeping it the same size, but increasing the years-axis from 20 to perhaps 50-year increments, thus stretching it to the year 2240, and giving it much more of the desired alarmist effect. Al Gore is probably just itching to use that lift again, with his much-loved hockey schtick debunked.
Chu was asked a direct question, and botched it. Liars need to have a script in order to cover their lies, and this question obviously was unexpected. Expect to see a lot of spin and back-pedaling. Should be fun to watch!