The Yes Men release another “Special Edition” paper

Posted on September 21st, 2009 by bile
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http://nypost-se.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 21, 2009

“WE’RE SCREWED”: MEDIA HEIST BLANKETS CITY WITH “SPECIAL EDITION” NEW YORK POST
Tabloid Tells Truth About Climate Change and How It Will Affect City, World

Contact: The Yes Men <mailto:tabloid@theyesmen.org>, 347-254-7054, 646-220-4137
Fake New York Post: http://www.nypost-se.com/
Video News Release: http://www.nypost-se.com/video
City report on climate change: http://www.nyc.gov/html/om/pdf/2009/NPCC_CRI.pdf
Wake-up call: http://www.tcktcktck.org/wakeup

Early this morning, nearly a million New Yorkers were stunned by the appearance of a “special edition” New York Post blaring headlines that their city could face deadly heat waves, extreme flooding, and other lethal effects of global warming within the next few decades. The most alarming thing about it: the news came from an official City report.

Distributed by over 2000 volunteers throughout New York City, the paper has been created by The Yes Men and a coalition of activists as a wake-up call to action on climate change. It appears one day before a UN summit where Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon will push 100 world leaders to make serious commitments to reduce carbon emissions in the lead-up to the Copenhagen climate conference in December. Ban has said that the world has “less than 10 years to halt (the) global rise in greenhouse gas emissions if we are to avoid catastrophic consequences for people and the planet,” adding that Copenhagen is a “once-in-a-generation opportunity.”

Although the 32-page New York Post is a fake, everything in it is 100% true, with all facts carefully checked by a team of editors and climate change experts.

“This could be, and should be, a real New York Post,” said Andy Bichlbaum of the Yes Men. “Climate change is the biggest threat civilization has ever faced, and it should be in the headlines of every paper, every day until we solve the problem.”

The fake Post’s cover story (“We’re Screwed”) reports the frightening conclusions of a blue-ribbon panel of scientists commissioned by the mayor’s office to determine the potential effects of climate change on the City. That report was released in February of this year, but received very little press at the time.

Other lead articles describe the Pentagon’s alarmed response to global warming (“Clear & Present Disaster”), the U.S. government’s sadly minuscule response to the crisis (“Congress Cops Out on Climate”), China’s alternative energy program (“China’s Green Leap Forward Overtakes U.S.”), and how if the US doesn’t quickly pass a strong climate bill, the crucial Copenhagen climate talks this December could be a “Flopenhagen.”

The paper includes original investigative reporting as well. One article (“Carbon counter counts New Yorkers as fools”) reveals that Deutsche Bank – which erected a seven-story “carbon counter” in central Manhattan – not only invests heavily in coal-mining companies worldwide, but has recently entered the business of coal trading itself.

The paper has the world’s gloomiest weather page, covering the next 70 years rather than just 7 days. The “Around the World” section describes the disproportionate effects of climate change on poorer parts of the world, including extreme droughts, floods, famines, water shortages, mass migrations and conflicts. Developing countries will bear the brunt of climate change effects even though they have done very little to cause the problem.

But the paper isn’t all doom and gloom. An article called “New York Fights Back” notes that the carbon emissions of Big Apple residents are only one third the national average, and that the city is building 1800 miles of bike paths, planting one million trees, and replacing its fleet of police cars with hybrids. There’s also a page of black-humor cartoons (in one, Charlie Brown finds Snoopy drowned), a gossip section that takes no prisoners, and a number of truly cheerful ads – for sex (“Awesome. No carbon emissions.”), tote bags, bicycles, and tap water (“Literally comes right out of your faucet!”).

Another ad promotes civil disobedience, encouraging readers to visit http://BeyondTalk.net and pledge to risk arrest in a planned global action November 30, just before the conference in Copenhagen.

“We need strong action on climate change,” said David Solnit of Mobilization for Climate Justice West, one of the partners in BeyondTalk.net. “But history shows that leaders act only when people take to the streets to demand it. That’s what needs to happen now.”

This paper is one of 2500 initiatives taking place in more than 130 countries as a response to the “Global Wake-up Call” on climate change.  For more information, visit www.tcktcktck.org/wakeup

Even if their concern is warranted, which I seriously question, the means they advocate will not make things better but surely make them worse for us all. Remove government regulations restricting the market from developing cleaner solutions, remove government subsidies and most importantly… start enforcing property rights.

Paul Krugman calls those against Waxman-Markey climate change bill treasonous against the planet

Posted on June 29th, 2009 by bile
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http://www.nytimes.com/…

So the House passed the Waxman-Markey climate-change bill. In political terms, it was a remarkable achievement.

But 212 representatives voted no. A handful of these no votes came from representatives who considered the bill too weak, but most rejected the bill because they rejected the whole notion that we have to do something about greenhouse gases.

And as I watched the deniers make their arguments, I couldn’t help thinking that I was watching a form of treason — treason against the planet.

To fully appreciate the irresponsibility and immorality of climate-change denial, you need to know about the grim turn taken by the latest climate research.

I keep fairly up to date on the latest information regarding climate change and I’m still not convinced of the extent to which humans have influenced the climate. The lists of scientists which oppose the politically correct version of anthropogenic global warming climate change grows larger and larger all the time. Regardless of whether or not global climate change is man made the solution is more freedom and property rights protection rather then less. It is fascism and collectivism which has lead to the increase in pollution and use of oil. The government is the largest polluter, excuses other polluters and subsidizes organizations which the free market likely wouldn’t had invested in.

Middle-of-the-Road policy leads to socialism

Posted on April 8th, 2009 by bile
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http://online.wsj.com/…

The White House is open to compromise on certain key elements of its climate-change agenda, including whether businesses could get some emissions allowances free, administration officials said Wednesday.

“[The president's] preferred approach was 100% auction to create incentives for companies to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions,” said White House spokesman Ben LaBolt. “Members of Congress are looking at a variety of policy options to help us make that transition, and the administration will be flexible during the policymaking process as long as those larger goals are met,” he said in an email.

Many lawmakers have warned that passing a climate bill will be difficult if the administration sticks to a position that all of the greenhouse-gas emissions allowances under a so-called cap and trade system would have to be purchased at auction. Recent Senate votes have indicated that proponents of an economywide cap and trade proposal don’t yet have the 60 votes needed in the Senate to overcome a filibuster.

Many of those same senators have written to Mr. Obama warning against trying to push a bill with 100% auction and outlining some of their concerns. Legislators are concerned that auctioning off so many credits would cost their industries too much and they want a larger portion of the revenues funneled into low-carbon energy technologies and energy-intensive sectors.

In the president’s fiscal year 2010 budget, the administration proposed cutting greenhouse-gas emissions 83% from 2005 levels by 2050, and auctioning off all of the credits that give the holder the right to emit gases such as carbon dioxide. Mr. Obama proposed distributing most of the revenues gathered in the auction as a tax credits to lower-income households, while siphoning off a fraction to fund clean-energy technologies.

If CO2 is truly a pollutant how is it legitimate that the government allows people to pollute? Giving them the permission to explicitly do so? Isn’t that exactly what lead to the polluted state we live in now? By going from upholding property rights to explicitly allowing others to infringe on them. It shows that they really don’t buy into the whole crisis thing. It’s just a way to gain more power and control and is heavily supported with the state socialist movements of the world. Cap and trade has shown to be at best ineffective if not an outright racket in which, as always, big business uses government as a means to keep out competition. Leading to corporatism, fascism, socialism.

Waiting to exhale: E.P.A. Expected to Regulate Carbon Dioxide

Posted on February 19th, 2009 by bile
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http://www.nytimes.com/…

The Environmental Protection Agency is expected to act for the first time to regulate carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases that scientists blame for the warming of the planet, according to top Obama administration officials.

The decision, which most likely would play out in stages over a period of months, would have a profound impact on transportation, manufacturing costs and how utilities generate power. It could accelerate the progress of energy and climate change legislation in Congress and form a basis for the United States’ negotiating position at United Nations climate talks set for December in Copenhagen.

If the environmental agency determines that carbon dioxide is a dangerous pollutant to be regulated under the Clean Air Act, it would set off one of the most extensive regulatory rule makings in history. Ms. Jackson knows that she would be stepping into a minefield of Congressional and industry opposition and said that she was trying to devise a program that allayed these worries.

He said that under the clean air law any source emitting more than 250 tons of a declared pollutant would be subject to regulation, potentially including schools, hospitals, shopping centers, even bakeries, which has prompted some critics to call it the “Dunkin’ Donuts rule.”

But Mr. Bookbinder and other supporters say the regulations can be written to exempt these potential emitters. Ms. Jackson said that there was no timetable for issuing regulations governing carbon emissions and that her agency would not engage in “rash decision making.”

Either carbon dioxide is a “dangerous pollutant” there should be no exceptions. A 1 250 tons “polluter” is just as bad as 250 1 ton “polluters.” A law like this would incentivize businesses to build smaller emitters and more of them. At some point the limit would lower, covering more emitters and increasing the difficulty of enforcement. At 1kg / day and 305,837,000 individuals subject the this proposed regulation we get 337,127.584 short tons. Divided by 250 we get 1348.51 legally regulatable sources. The law should be consistantly applied. Proportional to output. That is assuming property rights are ignored and everything is treated as “commons.” When you account for private property rights pollution is a subjective designation. The only person or persons able to define what pollution is are those who OWN the property. If you are a farmer and believe the studies which show that increased CO2 percentages increase crop yield you may not care that the guy next door is allowing CO2 onto your property. If however he’s burning coal and covering the landscape in soot you have a clear, involuntary, property rights infringement which can be brought to arbitration and gives the infringed the legitimate use of force to prevent further infringement and cover damages.

This is of course ignoring any consideration that CO2 may in fact not be a significant contributor to global climate change. Given that H2O vapor and methane play far larger roles in being components of the earth green house gas composition either due to its increase heat retention per unit or due to shear quantity of the gas in the atmosphere.

Bio-plastics causing issues

Posted on April 27th, 2008 by bile
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http://www.guardian.co.uk/…

The worldwide effort by supermarkets and industry to replace conventional oil-based plastic with eco-friendly “bioplastics” made from plants is causing environmental problems and consumer confusion, according to a Guardian study.

The substitutes can increase emissions of greenhouse gases on landfill sites, some need high temperatures to decompose and others cannot be recycled in Britain.

Many of the bioplastics are also contributing to the global food crisis by taking over large areas of land previously used to grow crops for human consumption.

The market for bioplastics, which are made from maize, sugarcane, wheat and other crops, is growing by 20-30% a year.

The industry, which uses words such as “sustainable”, “biodegradeable”, “compostable” and “recyclable” to describe its products, says bioplastics make carbon savings of 30-80% compared with conventional oil-based plastics and can extend the shelf-life of food.

Concern centres on corn-based packaging made with polylactic acid (Pla). Made from GM crops, it looks identical to conventional polyethylene terephthalate (Pet) plastic and is produced by US company NatureWorks. The company is jointly owned by Cargill, the world’s second largest biofuel producer, and Teijin, one of the world’s largest plastic manufacturers.

Pla is used by some of the biggest supermarkets and food companies, including Wal-Mart, McDonald’s and Del Monte. It is used by Marks & Spencer to package organic foods, salads, snacks, desserts, and fruit and vegetables.

It is also used to bottle Belu mineral water, which is endorsed by environmentalists because the brand’s owners invest all profits in water projects in poor countries. Wal-Mart has said it plans to use 114m Pla containers over the course of a year.

While Pla is said to offer more disposal options, the Guardian has found that it will barely break down on landfill sites, and can only be composted in the handful of anaerobic digesters which exist in Britain, but which do not take any packaging. In addition, if Pla is sent to UK recycling works in large quantities, it can contaminate the waste stream, reportedly making other recycled plastics unsaleable.

Last year Innocent drinks stopped using Pla because commercial composting was “not yet a mainstream option” in the UK.

Anson, one of Britain’s largest suppliers of plastic food packaging, switched back to conventional plastic after testing Pla

in sandwich packs. Sainsbury’s has decided not to use it, saying Pla is made with GM corn. “No local authority is collecting compostable packaging at the moment. Composters do not want it,” a spokesman said.

Britain’s supermarkets compete to claim the greatest commitment to the environment with plant-based products. The bioplastics industry expects rising oil prices to help it compete with conventional plastics, with Europe using about 50,000 tonnes of bioplastics a year.

Concern is mounting because the new generation of biodegradable plastics ends up on landfill sites, where they degrade without oxygen, releasing methane, a greenhouse gas 23 times more powerful than carbon dioxide. This week the US national oceanic and atmospheric administration reported a sharp increase in global methane emissions last year.

I’m not sure that the government is subsidizing this bio-plastic but I don’t doubt it given the same parent company gets lots of subsidies to create corn based ethanol. Looks to me not enough research went into this bio-plastic plan. How much does one want to bet the idea was pushed on the stores by people who didn’t know better or just wanted to look like they were green? If you look at even the IPCC reports there is little or nothing that can be done which would make a significant impact on the current trends, assuming we have any significant impact on this trend in the first place. If we just let the market work, as the scarcity of oil increases so will the prices and customers will demand a better product. That process will be more drawn out and likely a lot more reliable then this current ram rod method we are receiving from the government. There would be real incentives to get it right for the long haul and those who don’t get it right won’t be subsidized by the government and their impact will be minor. These unintended consequences seem to occur very regularly in the government central planning system.

China new CO2 emitter king

Posted on June 21st, 2007 by bile
Categories and Tags: Uncategorized, , , , , ,

http://www.bloomberg.com/…

China overtook the U.S. last year as the world’s biggest emitter of carbon dioxide, the greenhouse gas blamed for the bulk of global warming, a policy group that advises the Dutch government said.

Who here thinks China gives a hoot about eliminating CO2 creation? Perhaps if the American people really care about minimizing our affect on the environment we will stop purchasing goods from China. Who here thinks that has a chance in hell of happening?