Study: Billions Utterly Wasted on Obama’s Global Warming Jihad

Photo Credit: Reuters As President Obama last month launched a sweeping new national program to combat “climate change,” including tens of billions of dollars in likely new subsidies for solar and wind power and bio-energy, a separate, groundbreaking study by the National Research Council has warned that those kinds of subsidies are virtually useless at quelling greenhouse gases.

The study, which looks at the subsidies and other incentives embedded in U.S. federal tax law after the past several years of climate change initiatives, concludes that they have done little or nothing so far to cut U.S. contributions to global carbon emissions, and are unlikely to do much more before 2035, the project’s research horizon.

The two-year, $2 million probe was the first of its kind undertaken to examine the relationship between U.S. tax provisions, a key tool of U.S. climate change policy, and the actual reduction of greenhouse gases.

The pioneering nature of the study itself speaks volumes about the murkiness of official knowledge concerning how well government can tweak the global thermostat by trying to radically reorient energy production and consumption in the U.S. economy.

It was carried out by a 12-member National Academy of Sciences panel of economists, energy experts, environmentalists, tax specialists and climate scientists backed by consultants wielding powerful computerized economic models and a sizeable handful of National Academy of Sciences staff.

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Breakthrough in Quest for Nuclear Fusion

Photo Credit: Image EditorThe international nuclear fusion project – known as Iter, meaning “the way” in Latin – is designed to demonstrate a new kind of nuclear reactor capable of producing unlimited supplies of cheap, clean, safe and sustainable electricity from atomic fusion.

If Iter demonstrates that it is possible to build commercially-viable fusion reactors then it could become the experiment that saved the world in a century threatened by climate change and an expected three-fold increase in global energy demand.

This week the project gained final approval for the design of the most technically challenging component – the fusion reactor’s “blanket” that will handle the super-heated nuclear fuel.

The building site in Cadarache has also passed the crucial stage where some 493 seismic bearings – giant concrete and rubber plinths – have been set into the reactor’s deep foundations to protect against possible earthquakes.

Peering over the edge of the huge seismic isolation pit, it is still possible to see some of these bearings before they are covered with a raft of reinforced concrete that will support the massive fusion machine at the heart of the £13bn [$20 billion] Iter project.

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DOE Awarding More Than $1.2 Billion in Energy Subsidies Despite Sequester

Photo Credit: janie.hernandez55

More than $1.2 billion in cash payments has been awarded to renewable energy projects by the Department of Energy and the Treasury Department since the beginning of the year, with the majority of them going to solar electricity.

While other agencies grapple with furloughs and service cuts, the DOE continues to hand out 30 percent of the cost basis for renewable projects under its 1603 program, part of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Between January 1 and February 14,$1,254,769,726 was awarded to 435 renewable energy projects, 381 of which were to solar, according to the Heritage Foundation.

The 1603 program had awarded more than $9.2 billion to 748 wind projects and $2.7 billion to more than 44,000 solar projects through July 2012, according to a separate Heritage report.

The program won’t escape the sequester completely unscathed. Projects awarded between March 1 and September 30 will be reduced by 8.7 percent.

But the DOE is pressing ahead with awards to green technology. The department also announced last month it will award $150 million left over from a separate stimulus program, 48C manufacture tax credits.

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Senators Raise Alarm Over Another Possible Sale Of Taxpayer-Backed Firm To Chinese

Photo Credit: ReutersRepublican senators complained Wednesday that U.S. taxpayer dollars could end up boosting the Chinese economy, following reports that a Chinese firm is leading the pack of companies bidding for a majority stake in government-backed Fisker Automotive.

The troubled California-based electric car maker, which was backed by U.S. taxpayers to the tune of nearly $530 million, for months has been looking for a financial partner. Reuters reported earlier this week that China’s Zhejiang Geely Holding Group is favored to take over, though Fisker is also reportedly weighing a bid from another Chinese auto maker.

The development comes after Fisker’s main battery supplier — U.S. government-backed A123 Systems — was recently purchased by a separate Chinese firm.

Sens. John Thune, R-S.D., and Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, voiced concern Wednesday that Chinese companies are benefiting from U.S. taxpayers’ investment.

“Obama’s green energy investments appear to be nothing more than venture capital for eventual Chinese acquisitions,” Thune said in a statement. “After stimulus-funded A123 was just acquired by a Chinese-based company, it’s troubling to see that yet another struggling taxpayer-backed company might be purchased under duress by a Chinese company.”

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Video: Obama official testifies that the Green Energy loan subsidies have been “an enormous success”

An “enormous success”? What planet are these folks living on? Listen to this short video clip of an Obama official (David G. Frantz, Acting Executive Director of the Loan Program Office for the U.S. Department of Energy) testifying before a House subcommittee yesterday.



Photo credit: charlesfettinger