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13 February 2015

In the News
EPAs Unconstitutional Clean Power Plan Brazenly Flouts the Separation of Powers
Marlo Lewis, CNS News, 12 February 2015
EPA under Fire for Concealing Controversial Scientific Data, Silencing Skeptics
Kevin Mooney, The Daily Signal, 11 February 2015
Never Mind Keystone XL: EPA Regulations Are the Real Battle
Chip Knappenberger, Cato Institute, 11 February 2015
The Climate Comintern Speaks
Benjamin Zycher, The Hill, 10 February 2015
Regarding Coal Divestment
Kathleen Hartnett White, Master Resource, 10 February 2015
Europe Loses Billion in Badly Sited Renewable Power Plants
Joseph Nyangon, Energy Collective, 10 February 2015
The Top 10 Global Warming Lies That May Shock You
James Taylor, Forbes, 9 February 2015
About Denying, Deniers, and Denial
Ben Pile, Climate Resistance, 9 February 2015

News You Can Use

Study: Skeptics Know More about Climate Science reported yesterday on a forthcoming paper in the journal Advances in Political Psychology
by Yale Professor Dan Kahan that finds that skeptics score about the same (in fact slightly better) on
climate science questions than do alarmists.

Inside the Beltway

Myron Ebell

EPA Takes 75 Pages to Explain Why Murray Energy Challenge to

Clean Power Plan has No Legal Basis
The Environmental Protection Agency filed its reply brief on 12th February to the suit brought by Murray
Energy that challenges the EPAs proposed rule to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from existing coal
and gas power plants. EPA lawyers claim that the suit has no legal basis, but as my CEI colleague
Marlo Lewis noted, it takes them 75 pages to explain why.
Another indication of the seriousness of Murray Energys suit is that the Natural Resources Defense
Council, the Environmental Defense Fund, and the Sierra Club filed a lengthy amicus brief in what is the
early stages of the case. The federal DC Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments on 16th April on the
case that has been consolidated with the case brought by thirteen state Attorneys General.

House Passes Keystone, Obama Veto Will Have To Wait

The House of Representatives on 11th February passed the Senates amended version of the bill that
would bypass President Obama and permit the Keystone XL Pipeline from Albertas oil sands to Gulf
refineries. The vote was 270 to 152. Twenty-nine Democrats joined all the Republicans except for Rep.
Justin Amash (R-Michigan), who was the only Republican voting No.
House and Senate leaders have decided not to send the bill to President Obama until after the weeklong Presidents Day recess. The White House has promised that the President will veto the
bill. Republicans in Congress hope that public pressure in favor of building the pipeline will build over
the recess.

Forked Tongue: EPA Double Spins Low Oil Prices

Marlo Lewis
The State Departments Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (FSEIS) on the Keystone XL
Pipeline (KXL) found that if permission to build the KXL is denied, roughly the same amount of heavy
crude made from Canadas oil sands would reach U.S. refiners. The oil would just come by alternate
routes, principally rail. Because the alternatives are less energy efficient, they would emit 28% to 42%
more carbon dioxide (CO2) than the proposed pipeline (FSEIS, ES-34). Policy implication: Approving the
KXL is the climate-friendly choice!
That assessment is intolerable to Keystone bashers, and last week the EPA flew to their rescue.
In a Feb. 2 comment letter, EPA argued roughly as follows. State found that the extra cost of
transporting crude by rail could make new oil sands development uneconomical if prices fall below $75
per barrel. Thus, in an era of low oil prices, building the KXL could make otherwise unprofitable oil sands
projects profitable. If so, the KXL would increase oil sands development and the associated emissions
beyond what would otherwise occur.

Now, the KXL is climatologically irrelevant. Even under the unrealistic assumption that the pipeline
would operate at full capacity (830,000 barrels per day) round the clock and every barrel would be
additional oil produced only because the KXL exists to deliver it, the warming contribution would be an
undetectable and inconsequential 0.01C in 2100, according to EPAs own climate model.
Nonetheless, eco-activists hail EPAs letter as proof that the KXL would significantly exacerbate the
problem of carbon pollution and, thus, fail the (monomaniacal) national-interest litmus test President
Obama announced in his June 25, 2013 climate change speech at Georgetown University.
The Keystone bashers conveniently overlook the obvious. Oil prices are volatile. Prices are low today but
neither EPA nor anyone else knows the price of oil a year from now, much less over the lifetime of the
proposed project.
But EPA speaks with a forked tongue. EPA speaks with forked tongue. Last Friday, EPA Administrator
Gina McCarthy described low oil prices as a short-term blip that will not influence consumer buying
habits and should not modify federal motor vehicle fuel-economy standards. "We don't think that this
small timeline, where there is this extreme fluctuation, is going to continue," she said.

Across the States

Myron Ebell

Oregons Democratic Governor John Kitzhaber announced his resignation on Friday, 13th February, as
the result of revelations that Oregons First Lady Cylvia Hayes has taken hundreds of thousands of
dollars in payoffs from green energy clients and non-profit groups to promote their interests. Kitzhaber
will be succeeded by Oregons elected Secretary of State, Kate Brown, until a special election is held in
November 2016 to fill the last two years of his term.
Hayes has been Kitzhabers girlfriend for several years and more recently his fiance. The governor
designated her as Oregons official first lady and allowed her to run her clean energy consulting business
out of the governors mansion and gave her authority to direct state employees on policies related to
her clients. Hayes received payments from some of these clients that were not reported by her in state
conflict of interest filings. These payments included $118,000 from the Clean Economy Development
Center in 2011 and 2012 and a further $85,000 in 2013, including $50,000 from the Energy Foundation.
The Clean Economy Development Center, based in Washington, DC, went out of business after the IRS
revoked its tax-exempt status. The Energy Foundation should really be called the Anti-Energy
Foundation. Based in San Francisco, it was founded in the early 1990s by the Pew Charitable Trusts, the
Rockefeller Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation. According to Kellan Howell in a Washington
Times story: Jenny Coyle, communications manager for the Energy Foundation, told the Times that the
foundation provided the Clean Economy Development Center $50,000 in 2011 and $25,000 in 2012 for
the fellowship program in which Ms. Hayes participated. She was the centers only fellow.

Among the Energy Foundations recent donors is the TomKat Charitable Trust, which was founded and is
controlled by billionaire Democratic donor and climate activist Tom Steyer. Howell reported that
TomKat had given $200,000 in 2012 to the Energy Foundation. Steyers PAC, NextGen Climate Action,
also gave the Oregon Democratic Party $100,000.
Portlands Oregonian newspaper published an editorial last week that demanded Governor Kitzhaber
resign. The editorial commented, Who knew following the trail of clean energy money could make
you feel so dirty? That is ironic, but should not be surprising. Renewable energy technologies such as
wind and solar power and ethanol cannot survive without government handouts and mandates. Small
payoffs to government officials can yield big profits.
The Oregon Attorney Generals office and the FBI are investigating Kitzhaber and Hayess violations of
state and federal laws. As I remarked in an online video interview with the Wall Street Journals Mary
Kissel a couple of hours before Kitzhaber resigned, the investigations should not stop there. The nonprofit groups that were making these payoffs should also be investigated for other similar illegal political
Willamette Week, a Portland alternative newspaper that endorsed Kitzhaber for re-election last fall and
supports his climate and renewable energy policies, uncovered the scandal and deserves a huge amount
of credit. Here is a recent article from the paper that summarizes the whole scandal.

California Governor Jerry Brown (D) in his state of the state address last month called on the legislature
to enact legislation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions far below what is required in Californias AB 32
legislation. This week State Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon released a package of four bills that
meets the governors targets.
One of the bills in the package was introduced by state Senator Fran Pavley (D), who was the chief
sponsor of AB 32, enacted in 2006 when she served in the state Assembly. Her new bill is numbered SB
32. AB 32 requires California to reduce its total greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020. SB 32
would require that emissions be reduced by 80% below 1990 levels by 2050.
Other bills in the package would require that by 2030 Californians cut their oil consumption for
transportation by 50% and get 50% of their electricity from renewable sources. Welcome to