Climate News Roundup

The Greener Side of Recession: In Saturday’s edition of the NYT, this writer reflects on a debate between an article from Finance Markets entitled “10 Ways Recession Can Help the Environment” and a response arguing that a recession hurts clean investment and research and development for technologies.

Appellate Panel Rejects E.P.A. Emission Limits
: The EPA’s weak attempt to regulate mercury emissions is rejected by a court on the basis that legislation instructing the EPA calls for more stringent mercy reductions.

GM Chief Urges Auto Dealers to Oppose States’ Greenhouse Gas Limits – AP. General Motors Corp. Chairman and Chief Executive Rick Wagoner called on auto dealers Saturday to help the industry prevent states from forming their own auto emission rules, saying that the better course is one tough national standard. [JR — I would add “which is considerable easier/cheaper for GM to lobby against….]

3 Responses to Climate News Roundup

  1. Gary Herstein says:

    “[JR — I would add “which is considerable easier/cheaper for GM to lobby against….]”

    Do we know this for a fact? The reason the Constitution was amended to require direct election of Federal Senators, rather than election by State legislative branches, is because the railroads could so easily corrupt State representatives, but the Federal level was further from their reach. So I’m wondering if there’s actual evidence to support Joe’s claim, or this is just an assumption?

    By the bye, it would not surprise me to learn that GM execs *believe* what Joe attributes to them above, while being demonstrably wrong about the matter. After all, we are talking about an American car company here …

  2. John Mashey says:

    As evidence in support of JR, read Allan Brandt’s “The Cigarette Century”, in which many details make it clear the that the tobacco companies had a much easier time lobbying Congress than in stamping out all the localized anti-smoking laws that kept popping up.

    For what it’s worth, regarding the CA(+16 others’) fight with EPA:

    In 2000, the 17 states, including CA, represented 46% of the population, paid 51% of the taxes, but of the $289B that went to Washington that did not come back to states, those 17 states paid 70% ($202B), i.e., as a group, we pay a lot of the bills.

    [1] DC not included

    I did a spreadsheet of this, sorted by amount of money sent to Fed and not returned (CA is #1 of course, NY is #2, etc), and then colored green those with CA. Guess what: most “donor” states are with CA, although some (MI, IL, WI) are not for understandable reasons.

  3. Gary Herstein says:

    Thanks John, that’s what I was looking for!