The Obama administration is surging forward with a first-of-its-kind EPA rule for new power plants, in what Republicans and industry groups say will inflate electricity prices and possibly kill off coal, the preeminent U.S. energy source. The EPA announced the rule Tuesday, with a goal to curb carbon dioxide emissions by imposing strict regulations on new coal-fired plants, including a limit that caps plant emissions to not more than 1,000 tons of carbon dioxide per megawatt-hour of energy generated.
Republicans see rising oil and gasoline prices as an opportunity to score political points on President Obama. To be sure, Obama is partly responsible for the rise in world prices and could do something about it. The irony is that Republicans would emphatically oppose the one measure that would be most effective in easing the pressure on prices right now: defusing tension in the Middle East by taking the war threat against Iran off the table.
After once touting Solyndra as a success story, President Obama sought to distance himself from the now-bankrupt and scandal-plagued manufacturer of solar panels, blaming Congress and China for the debacle instead of accepting responsibility. Critics of the administration promptly blasted the comments.
In a new, first-ever analysis, the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) issued a report showing that there were 3.1 million "green" jobs in the United States in 2010, or 2.4 percent of the nation’s overall employment. Green Goods and Services jobs, the BLS indicates, "are found in businesses that produce goods and provide services that benefit the environment or conserve natural resources."
President Obama embarked on a four-state energy tour this week and made his first stop in Boulder City, a Nevada town about 20 miles outside Las Vegas. The town is home to the Copper Mountain Solar 1 Facility, the largest photovoltaic solar power plant in the United States, where the President renewed his support for the solar industry.
Many criticisms have been leveled against various forms of “alternative energy” in general, and wind power in particular. Some critics have called wind power “impractical,” while others have labeled it as “idealistic.” Some have noted that the turbines are simply “ugly.”
Billionaire Australian mining magnate Clive Palmer accused the CIA of funding environmental extremists seeking to cripple the island nation’s industry, saying during a press conference that the money was being routed through conduits such as the infamous Rockefeller Foundation. And the Australians involved in the alleged plot are essentially committing “treason,” Palmer declared.
Germany — once a global leader in the race for reliance on “alternative” forms of energy — has discovered that no amount of environmentalist ideology can alter the fundamental laws of economics. Although wind and solar “farms” have been the recipients of lavish government subsidies throughout the European Union, the German government is now being forced to concede it cannot continue supporting solar power at the levels that had quickly become customary, and is dramatically reducing its solar energy subsidy.
On top of recent articles at The New American about huge oil deposits in the United States, now comes Ed Morse, writing in the Wall Street Journal that those rosy estimates of growth and prosperity were far too conservative: “North America is becoming the new Middle East.”
Solyndra’s financial woes prompted White House officials to snub company executives from President Obama’s exclusive State of the Union box in January 2011, according to new e-mails released Friday. In May 2010, the President said that "companies like Solyndra" are the "true engine of economic growth," and in his 2010 State of the Union address, Obama claimed that the firm was "a California business that will put a thousand people to work making solar panels."