By John Seiler
It’s been five years now since Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006. Time for an assessment.
Two things to note up front. First, the operative euphemism has changed from “global warming” to “climate change.” So anything environmentalist extremists like Schwarzenegger or Gov. Jerry Brown say is “climate change” leads to them controlling your life. Anything. A butterfly dying out your window is an excuse for them to take over your energy production and consumer purchases.
Second, California remains just 1 percent of the global economy. AB 32 mandated a 25 percent reduction in state greenhouse gas emissions by 2020. So, that’s a 0.25 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions globally. Nothing.
AB 32 is a typical California exercise in global grandiloquence. We’re the center of the universe. We have surfing and Hollywood and Silicon Valley and the Golden Gate Bridge. We set trends. Everybody follows us.
Except that’s not how the real world works. Here’s what really happens:
The Chinese use dirty coal-generated electricity to make solar panels they sell to us to meet AB 32. They’re not going to slow down their economic growth just to make Arnold and Jerry feel better.
The Europeans have their own “climate change” agenda. But they also have their own major crisis with the Euro and the whole European Union falling apart, sparked by the PIIGS crisis.
India, another up-and-coming country, doesn’t care about AB 32. They’re also concerned about continuing to bring their people out of poverty.
Japan’s problem is declining output from a rapidly aging population.
Where Are the Jobs?
The California Air Resources Board still claims on its Web site: “The plan generates jobs, promotes a growing, clean-energy economy and a healthy environment for California at the same time.”
But where are those jobs? Five years later, the state’s economy suffers 12.1 percent unemployment, 3 percentage points higher than the U.S. economy.
And the Solyndra scandal reminded us that most “green” jobs exist only because of government subsidies and tax breaks. Solyndra got a $535 million federal loan and $35 million in California tax breaks.
Peter Lynch, a New York-based solar energy analyst, told ABC News: “It’s very difficult to perceive a company with a model that says, well, I can build something for six dollars and sell it for three dollars. Those numbers don’t generally work. You don’t want to lose three dollars for every unit you make.”
No kidding. But that’s what the whole “green jobs” scam is based on — especially AB 32.
CARB continues: “California’s economic powerhouses support AB 32. AB 32 enjoys the strong support of a diverse and formidable alliance of California’s economic powerhouses including Google, Gap Inc., eBay, Bloom Energy, E2, Small Business California, Yahoo!, California Business Alliance for a Green Economy, Cleantech, California Ski Industry Association, and much more. (Source: California’s Global Warming Solution — the Economic Stimulus We Need)”
Back to Oklahoma
Then why is Google building a gigantic new server farm in Oklahoma? AB 32 really is causing a Reverse Okie Trek, from California to Oklahoma.
According to the 2011 Green State Guide from Greenopia, California ranks 6th Greenest, Oklahoma way down at 33rd Greenest. According to the rankings, “Oklahoma is amongst the cellar dwellers in number of LEED buildings (both certified and registered). Finally, Oklahoma has worse than average per capita emissions and energy consumption rates. “ LEED is Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.
Oklahoma doesn’t have an AB 32.
Time to load up the truck like the Joad Family in “The Grapes of Wrath” and head back the other way singing, “I’m an Okie from Muskogee.”