I made a mistake about the Boxer substitute for the Lieberman-Warner bill. Every year, it allows into the market enough offsets to cover 30% of the total quantity of emissions allowances. I had said it was 15% (here), which was a loophole the size of the Gateway Arch. How big a loophole is 30% offsets? Wait and see.
I had said the three offsets — domestic, international, and international forestry — could make up 15% of allowances because the WRI summary (here) says that “The combination of all three of these mechanisms is limited to 15 percent of total emissions allowances” and because when I read the actual bill (here, page 23), that’s what it seemed to say. But in fact we read it wrong. My apologies! What does this all mean?
It means we have now doubled the number of offsets, which would “involve substantial issuance of credits that do not represent real emissions reductions,” according to a recent analysis by Stanford.
Now when I redo the math, it seems the most likely outcome of this bill is that U.S. energy-related CO2 emissions in 2025 would we about the same as they are now, and possibly higher. If that’s the best we can do for a piece of legislation that’s deader than a dead parrot — it is a dead parrot whose body has been given to a veterinary anatomy class for dissection and had its heart removed — why bother?
REDOING THE MATH