Archive for the ‘energy’ Category

Is John Kerry a Moron?

by Alan Caruba on Monday, March 16th, 2015

This is article 340 of 340 in the topic Global Warming
By Alan Caruba
I can recall John Kerry, Obama’s Secretary of State, from the days he testified to a congressional committee and slandered his fellow soldiers as the spokesman for Veterans Against the Vietnam War in 1971. I was appalled then and my opinion of the man has not changed since those days. I opposed the war, too, but I did not blame it on the men who were conscripted to fight it, nor did I believe the charges he leveled against some of them.
These days Kerry is engaged in securing an agreement with the Iranians, if not to stop their program to make their own nuclear weapons than to slow it to a later date. Never mind that the Iranian government is listed by our own government as a leading sponsor of terrorism worldwide or that they have signed such agreements in the past and then tossed out the inspectors.
Kerry is convinced that the Obama administration can get an agreement that is, in his own words, “not legally binding”, nor is it a treaty that the U.S. Senate would have to vote for or against. In point of fact, President Obama can make the deal—sign the agreement—just as Presidents have done for over two hundred years. It can then be abrogated by whoever the next President will be.
Why Obama and Kerry are doing this defies my understanding. It gives the Iranians more time to reach nuclear capability. It is opposed by every nation in the Middle East. It puts every nation within reach of Iran’s missiles at risk and it virtually guarantees the destruction of Israel, a goal of Iran’s Islamic Revolution from the day it was born. Kerry is negotiating with people who took our diplomats hostage in 1979 and have played a role in the deaths of many Americans since then.
Is John Kerry a moron? I think so.
I asked myself this question in regard to another area of U.S. policy which the Secretary of State is also championing even if millions around the world have concluded otherwise.
On March 2nd, Kerry addressed the Atlantic Council in Washington, D.C, telling them what he has been saying in many forums. Let us understand that “climate change” is the name being used to replace “global warming”, because the Earth has been in a cooling cycle for the past 18 years or so. And let us understand that “climate change” has been happening for 4.5 billion years.
Kerry said, “So when science tells us that our climate is changing and human beings are largely causing that change, by what right do people stand up and just say, ‘Well, I dispute that’ or ‘I deny that elementary truth’?”
The problem with this is that human beings are not causing the planet’s climate change. Forces far greater than humans are involved, not the least of which is the Sun.
As for science, its most fundamental methodology is to constantly challenge the various ‘truths’ put forward as theories until they can be proved to be true by being independently reproduced. Nothing about the “global warming” theories has been true. All of the computer models on which it was based have been proven inaccurate.

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Why Isn’t It Treason?

by Alan Caruba on Wednesday, January 21st, 2015

This is article 1015 of 1015 in the topic Obama
Yemini terrorists released from Gitmo

By Alan Caruba

“Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort.” – Article Three, Section Three, U.S. Constitution.
Given the fact that one of the suspects, Said Kouachi, in the Paris killings had traveled to Yemen in 2011 and that Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula has claimed responsibility for the killings, does it strike anyone as strange that Obama set free five Yemeni detainees out of Guantanomo Bay? Four were sent to Oman, a nation that neighbors Yemen. A fifth was transferred to Estonia. It was the first time either nation had accepted Gitmo prisoners for resettlement.
Does anyone think that the five Afghan Taliban leaders Obama set free last year are still in Qatar? Among the things Obama will be remembered for will be his promise to close Gitmo and these releases of U.S. enemies.
Since when is freeing Islamic terrorists to return to the battlefield not giving aid and comfort to the enemy? Well, it is not if you are the President of the United States because, believe it or not, what he did was entirely within his legal authority.
Most dramatic was Obama’s decision not to join the forty other world leaders in Paris to demonstrate a common opposition to Islamic terrorism. Indeed, he has denied the use of any reference to Islamic terrorism by government spokespersons or in government documents. To this day, the Fort Hood killings are still referred to as “workplace violence” despite the fact that the perpetrator was shouting “Allah akbar” as he killed his victims.
How stupid is it to continue to ignore the evidence that we have a President who is more inclined to side with our Islamic enemies than with Americans?
He withdrew our troops from Iraq, setting up the creation of the Islamic State (ISIS) to fill the vacuum that was created. He has officially declared an end to the American role in fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan. Yes, he has authorized drone killing of al Qaeda leaders and bombing of the ISIS troops, but neither has demonstrated any significant reduction in terrorism.
Then there is Obama’s “war on coal” which has resulted in a torrent of Environmental Protection Agency regulations and actions that between 2012 and 2020 will bring about the loss of 60 gigawatts of electricity generated by coal-fired plants around the nation. Replacing that lost production is not going to occur overnight. At this point, according to the Associated Press, more than 32 mostly coal-fired plants have closed or are in the process. “Another 36 plants could be forced to shut down as the result of new EPA rules regulating air pollution.”
In a response to the State of the Union speech, Mike Duncan, president of the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity, said, “President Obama failed to offer answers about the calamitous consequences of his environmental regulations.

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Obama Has Two More Years Left to Destroy the U.S.

by Alan Caruba on Tuesday, January 20th, 2015

This is article 270 of 270 in the topic energy

By Alan Caruba

As 2015 began the Journal Editorial Report on Fox News was devoted to having its reporters, some of the best there are, speculate on what 2015 holds in terms of who might run for president and what the economy might be. The key word here is “speculate” because even experts know that it is unanticipated events that determine the future and the future is often all about unanticipated events.
How different would the world have been if John F. Kennedy had not been assassinated? One can reasonably assume there would not have been the long war in Vietnam because he wanted no part of the conflict there. Few would have predicted that an unknown Governor from Arkansas would emerge to become President as Bill Clinton did. Who would believe we are talking about his wife running for President? That is so bizarre it is mind-boggling.
Most certainly, few would have predicted that an unknown first term Senator from Illinois, Barack Hussein Obama, would push aside Hillary Clinton to become the first black American to be nominated for President and to win in 2008. Despite the takeover of the nation’s healthcare system with a series of boldfaced lies, he still won a second term.
Obama now has two more years in which to try to destroy the U.S. economy; particularly its manufacturing and energy sectors. The extent to which he is putting in place the means to do that still remains largely unreported or under-reported in terms of the threat it represents.
The vehicle for the nation’s destruction is the greatest hoax of the modern era, the claim that global warming must be avoided by reducing “greenhouse gas” emissions.

A President who lied to Americans about the Affordable Care Act, telling them they could keep their insurance plans, their doctors, and not have to pay more is surely not going to tell Americans that the planet is now into its 19th year of a cooling cycle with no warming in sight.

To raise the ante of the planetary threat hoax, he has added “climate change” when one would assume even the simple-minded would know humans have nothing to do with the Earth’s climate, nor the ability to initiate or stop any change.
In 2015, the White House is launching a vast propaganda campaign through the many elements of the federal government to reach into the nation’s schools with the climate lies and through other agencies to spread them.
In particular, Obama has been striving to utilize the Environmental Protection Agency to subvert existing environmental laws and, indeed, the Constitution unless Congress or the courts stop an attack that will greatly weaken the business, industrial and energy sectors. It will fundamentally put our lives at risk when there is not enough electricity to power homes and workplaces in various areas of the nation. At the very least, the cost of electricity will, in the President’s own words, “skyrocket.”
Why doesn’t anyone in Congress or the rest of the population wonder why White House policies are closing coal-fired plants that provided fifty percent of our electricity when Obama took office and now have been reduced to forty percent?

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Fracking is Fundamental

by Alan Caruba on Monday, December 22nd, 2014

This is article 269 of 270 in the topic energy
By Alan Caruba
“It is a sad day when a state chooses to listen to the fear, uncertainty, and doubts spread by anti-fossil fuel agitators rather than making a decision for economic strength that would benefit schools, communities, and many of its poorest citizens—especially when the vilified technology, hydraulic fracturing, has been used safely and successfully for more than 60 years and has brought prosperity to other formerly struggling regions.”
Marita Noon

Executive Director, Citizens Alliance for Responsible Energy
Policy Advisor, The Heartland Institute

Responding to the announcement by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo that the state would ban fracking, Ms. Noon joined others, bringing their expertise to bear on a topic that remains a concern only because environmentalist enemies of energy in America continue to lie about it every chance they get.
In his book, “The Fracking Truth–America’s Energy Revolution: The Inside, Untold Story”. Chris Faulkner wrote “Furthermore, it’s been commonplace for decades. Worldwide, it’s estimated that more than 2.5 million wells have been fracked and the U.S. accounted for about half of those. Today, about 35,000 wells are fracked each year in all types of wells. And it’s impact on industry? It’s been estimated that 80% of production from unconventional sources such as shales would not be feasible without it.”
The Governor’s decision has everything to do with wooing the support of environmentalists in New York and nothing to do with the jobs and billions in tax revenue that fracking would have represented.
New York’s acting health commissioner, Howard Zucker, justified the decision saying that “cumulative concerns” about fracking “give me reason to pause.” Are we truly expected to believe that five years of study since the initial 2009 memorandum about fracking any provided reason to ban it?  If the use of fracking technology dates back to 1947 without a single incident of pollution traced to it, what would it take to create “cumulative concerns” except ignorance or prejudice against the facts?
Even the Environmental Protection Agency has never found evidence of the chemicals used in fracking entering the nation’s groundwater. Moreover, fracking fluid is 99.5% water and sand. The rest is a mixture of chemicals similar to household products that could be found under the kitchen sink.
As Dr. Jay Lehr, Science Director of The Heartland Institute, a free market think tank, points out, “Today we only fracture wells that are drilled horizontally and that requires 1,500 feet of vertical depth for the well” and thus “all such wells are way below local water wells.”
How idiotic, then, is it to seal off some twelve million acres of the Marcellus Shale, an underground rock formation with natural gas reserves that have helped create energy production booms in North Dakota, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Colorado, and Ohio?
A December 19 Wall Street Journal editorial noted that just across New York’s border with neighboring Pennsylvania, “A 2011 Manhattan Institute study estimated that each Marcellus Shale well in Pennsylvania generates $5 million in economic benefits and $2 million in tax revenue.” Companies there have generated more than $2.1 billion in state and local taxes since the fracking boom began.

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The New Congress Must Save the USA from the EPA

by Alan Caruba on Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

This is article 80 of 80 in the topic EPA
EPA headquarters in Washington, DC
By Alan Caruba
When the Republican Party takes over majority control of Congress in January, it will face a number of battles that must be fought with the Obama administration ranging from its amnesty intentions to the repeal of ObamaCare, but high among the battles is the need to rein in the metastasizing power of the Environmental Protection Agency.
In many ways, it is the most essential battle because it involves the provision of sufficient electrical energy to the nation to keep its lights on. EPA “interpretations” of the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts have become an outrageous usurpation of power that the Constitution says belongs exclusively to the Congress.
As a policy advisor to The Heartland Institute, a free market think tank, I recall how in 2012 its president, Joe Bast, submitted 16,000 signed petitions to Congress calling on it to “rein in the EPA.” At the time he noted that “Today’s EPA spends billions of dollars (approximately $9 billion in 2012) imposing senseless regulations. Compliance with its unnecessary rules costs hundreds of billions of dollars more.”
Heartland’s Science Director, Dr. Jay Lehr, said “EPA’s budget could safely be cut by 80 percent or more without endangering the environment or human health. Most of what EPA does today could be done better by state government agencies, many of which didn’t exist or had much less expertise back in 1970 when EPA was created.”
The EPA has declared virtually everything a pollutant including the carbon dioxide (CO2) that 320 million Americans exhale with every breath. It has pursued President Obama’s “war on coal” for six years with a disastrous effect on coal miners, those who work for coal-fired plants that produce electricity, and on consumers who are seeing their energy bills soar.
As Edwin D. Hill, the president of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, noted in August, “The EPA’s plan, according to its own estimates, will require closing coal-fired plants over the next five years that generate between 41 and 49 gigawatts (49,000 megawatts) of electricity” and its plan would “result in the loss of some 52,000 permanent direct jobs in utilities, mining and rail, and at least another 100,000 jobs in related industries. High skill, middle-class jobs would be lost, falling heavily in rural communities that have few comparable employment opportunities.”
“The United States cannot lose more than 100 gigawatts of power in five years without severely compromising the reliability and safety of the electrical grid,” warned Hill.
In October the Institute for Energy Research criticized the EPA’s war on coal based on its Mercury and Air Toxics Rule and its Cross State Air Pollution Rule, noting that 72.7 gigawatts of electrical generating capacity have already, or are scheduled to retire. “That’s enough to reliably power 44.7 million homes, or every home in every state west of the Mississippi river, excluding Texas.” How widespread are the closures? There are now 37 states with projected power plant closures, up from 30 in 2011. The five hardest hit states are Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Kentucky, and Georgia.
If a foreign nation had attacked the U.S.

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The Great Renewable Energy Rip-Off

by Alan Caruba on Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

This is article 268 of 270 in the topic energy

 

By Alan Caruba
One of the lesser known attempts to prove that renewable energy, wind and solar power, can replace traditional energy sources–coal, oil, and natural gas–went belly up in much the same way current wind and solar companies depend on tapping the taxpayer for government subsidies in order to stay in business. Google’s Renewable Energy Cheaper than Coal initiative begun in 2007 and shut down four years later.
Two members of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Ross Koningstein and David Fork, worked on the project. Both men have excellent credentials in aerospace engineering and applied physicals, respectively, but neither had a clue about climatology. Expertise in one field rarely translates to another unless it is closely allied.

At the start of the project “we shared the attitude of many stalward environmentalists. We felt that with steady improvements to today’s renewable energy technologies, our society could stave off catastrophic climate change. We now know that to be a false hope, but that doesn’t mean the planet is doomed.”

Environmentalists start off with several thoroughly incorrect beliefs that are not supported by science. The first is that climate change has anything to do with human activity such as carbon dioxide and other so-called “greenhouse gases.”
The Earth is not a greenhouse. It is always in the process of absorbing and discharging heat via the atmosphere and the oceans. If it retained heat all life on Earth would die. Even on a hot summer’s day, it will cool at night. Deserts, too, are often cooler at night.  As for carbon dioxide, it is a trace gas in the atmosphere at barely 0.04%, but it is also the gas which all vegetation requires. In turn, vegetation gives off oxygen while we humans and other animals exhale carbon dioxide.
Secondly, environmentalists mistakenly believe that carbon dioxide emissions from the use of energy, particularly coal and oil, are so great that it affects the weather defined as what is happening now and the climate whose trends can only be determined decades and centuries from now. The constant claims about carbon dioxide emissions are blatantly false.
There is no basis in science for nations to reduce so-called greenhouse gas emissions. Indeed, more carbon dioxide would be a good thing for the planet’s vegetation, yielding healthier forests and greater crop yields on farms.
Thirdly, environmentalists believe that we shall run out of coal, oil, and natural gas at some point. The current estimates put that point very far in the future and, since new reserves are being found, they show no indication of not being available for a very long time to come.
“Trying to combat climate change exclusively with today’s renewable energy technologies simply won’t work,” said the two IEEE engineers. They’re right. Of all the forms of energy available wind and solar are so expensive and so unpredictable that they make no sense based on the false notion that humans can impact the Earth’s climate now or ever.
The public is never told that wind turbines and solar farms all require a traditional electrical energy producer—coal, oil, or natural gas-based—because they don’t function if the sun is not shining or the wind is not blowing. These days, we can add nuclear plants to those deemed traditional.

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The World’s Climate Change Mafia Meet in Peru

by Alan Caruba on Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014

This is article 337 of 340 in the topic Global Warming
By Alan Caruba
To understand all the talk of “climate change” you must understand that everything and everyone involved—except for those of us who debunk the lies—are engaged in a criminal enterprise to transfer billions from industrialized nations to those who have failed to provide a thriving economy, often because they are run by dictators or corrupt governments who skim the money for themselves.
The lies being inflicted on Americans include Obama’s “war on coal” that is shutting down coal-fired plants that affordably and efficiently produce the electricity the nation needs, along with the six-year delay of the Keystone XL pipeline. Add in the thousands of Environmental Protection Agency regulations affecting our manufacturing, business and agricultural sectors and the price we are paying is huge.
At its heart, environmentalism hates capitalism.
One of the worst parts of this scam to take from the rich and give to the poor—otherwise known as “redistribution”—is the way the world’s media have played along since 1992 when the first Earth Summit was held in Rio. The perpetrators are headquartered in the United Nations, home to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that sets the agenda.
While the 20th session of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s Conference of Parties meets in Lima, Peru this week, perhaps the most egregious and outrageous example of journalism was the December 2ndAssociated Press article, “Hotter, Weirder: How Climate Change and Changed the Earth.” It is not attributed to a specific reporter; perhaps because it is filled with lies from start to finish.
It starts with the biggest lie of all:  “WASHINGTON (AP) — In the more than two decades since world leaders first got together to try to solve global warming, life on Earth has changed, not just the climate. It’s gotten hotter, more polluted with heat-trapping gases, more crowded and just downright wilder.”
The Earth is in the 19th year of a natural cooling cycle, the result of a comparable cycle on the Sun which is producing less radiation to warm the planet. What astounds anyone who knows this is the article’s assertion that “It’s almost a sure thing that 2014 will go down as the hottest year in 135 years of record keeping, meteorologists at NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center say. If so, this will be the sixth time since 1992 that the world set or tied a new annual record for the warmest year.”
Would government agencies that are beholden to the existing administration for their budgets lie to the public? Yes, they would. While all fifty states experienced freezing weather within the past month, we are still being told that 2014 set new records for warmth. To borrow a phrase from Jonathan Gruber, the architect of ObamaCare, the government can tell “stupid” voters and others anything it wants in order to achieve its goals.
For the record, in 2013 and much of 2014, there have been record low numbers of tornadoes and hurricanes. There was a record gain in Arctic and Antarctic ice. There was no change in the rate of sea level rise; something measured in millimeters.  The weather is the weather and that includes dramatic events such as blizzards or droughts, but it is hardly uniform.

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Take Your Pick of Lies About Ozone, Methane or Mercury

by Alan Caruba on Sunday, November 30th, 2014

This is article 191 of 191 in the topic Government Regulations

By Alan Caruba

Is it surprising that the Environmental Protection Agency continues to tell big fat lies about anything it wants to ban, but is reluctant to show the “science” on which the bans are based?
There is currently a piece of legislation under consideration by Congress, the Secret Science Reform Act, to force the EPA to disclose its scientific and technical information before proposing or finalizing any regulation.
This is what Nicolas Loris of The Heritage Foundation had to say regarding the mercury air and toxics rule that the EPA claims would produce $53 billion to $140 billion in annual health and environmental benefits. “The two studies that represent the scientific foundation for 1997 ozone and PM2.5 National Ambient Air Quality Standards are highly questionable and the data concealed, even though the studies were paid for by federal taxpayers and thus should be public property.”
In addition to claims about carbon dioxide as a dreaded “greenhouse” gas, methane is also getting the attention of those opposed to “fracking”, a technique that has provided access to both natural gas and oil. James M. Taylor, a Senior Fellow with The Heartland Institute, a free market think tank, noted in January that “Natural gas has high methane content, but the methane is converted to energy when natural gas is burnt.” Citing U.S. Energy Information Administration data, Taylor noted “The ongoing decline in methane emissions supplements ongoing declines in U.S. carbon dioxide emissions.” Since 2000 both are down between 6% AND 9%.
The EPA is forever claiming billions in “health benefits” that result from their regulations. The public never gets to see the data on which such claims are based. The regulations, however, cost billions.
The day before Thanksgiving, the EPA announced that it intends to propose an updated national standard for ground-level ozone, otherwise known as smog, based in part on the enforcement of rules concerning mercury. The previous day, the Supreme Court said it would review the agency’s standards requiring reductions of mercury emissions and other elements the EPA regards as toxic air pollution.
To put all this in perspective, in August CNS News’ Penny Starr reported on a study by the National Association of Manufacturers regarding the EPA’s proposed regulation of ozone. It found that “it could be the costliest federal rule by reducing the Gross National Product by $270 billion per year and $3.4 trillion from 2017 to 2040, and adds $3.3 trillion in compliance costs for the same period.”  NAM president, Jay Timmons, said “The regulation has the capacity to stop the manufacturing comeback in its tracks.”
Concurrently with NAM, the American Petroleum Institute released an analysis of the NAM study that said “The nation’s air quality has improved over the past several years, and ozone emissions will continue to decline without new regulations.” NAM’s vice president of energy and resources policy, Ross Eisenberg, said, “We are rapidly approaching a point where we are requiring manufacturers to do the impossible.”
That, however, is exactly what the ozone regulation is intended to do.

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The Two Ukraine’s

by Alan Caruba on Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

This is article 1254 of 1262 in the topic International
By Alan Caruba
“Obama is just not up to the task—a geopolitical lightweight who was easily outmaneuvered in Syria and Iran.”
That’s Marin Katusa, writing in his new book, “The Colder War: How the Global Energy Trade Slipped from America’s Grasp” ($29.95, John Wiley and Sons, and Casey Research). Katusa is no fan of President Obama, but one might wonder who is these days other than the 48% of Americans who think he’s doing a great job. Calling them stupid as the now famed Jonathan Gruber of ObamaCare fame has done is not far from the mark.
Katusa is a successful fund manager with a specialty of investing in the energy sector and helping to create energy companies. Along the way he has been to many nations around the world to see firsthand how their governments impact the energy companies working domestically and beyond. This is particularly true of Russia’s Vladimir Putin who took the collapsed Soviet Union and brought Russia back to life as the Russian Federation. At the core of the revival were and are his energy strategies.
That is what is at work these days in the Ukraine, divided between those who want it to join the European Union and NATO, and those who want to ally with Russia. Katusa reminds us that “At one time, Ukraine was Russia. Kievan Rus, the first East Slavic state, was established by the Varangians in the ninth century.”
“At the end of the eighteenth century, Ukraine was partitioned, with a small slice going to Austria/Hungary and the rest to the Russian Empire. The second decade of the twentieth century was as chaotic for Ukraine as it was for the rest of Europe. Civil War raged from 1917 to 1921, with a host of factions vying for control of the government of the newly proclaimed Ukrainian Republic. Their sovereign state proved to be short-lived.”
“By 1922, the Ukrainian army was overpowered and the nation became the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic.” World War Two was a horror for Ukraine. One out of every six Ukrainians died during the war, many of whom sided with Nazi Germany against Russia. It was recaptured in 1944 by the USSR.
Why is it important to Putin and Russia in 2014?
He wants to ensure that Ukraine, via pipelines, accommodates Russia’s natural gas production to buyers in Europe. “Half of Russia’s gas exports to the European Union (which cover 25 percent of the EU’s consumption) pass through Ukraine.”
Putin also needs to ensure that the Russian Navy has a secure port at Sebastopol on the Crimean Peninsula for to access to the Black Sea. Moreover, having Ukraine in its sphere of influence provides what the former USSR satellite nations did, a buffer that keeps NATO at a distance.

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Question: Did Chinese agree to global warming agreement because it doesn’t change anything or because they know that with Republicans controlling the Senate no treaty will be approved?

by John Lott on Wednesday, November 12th, 2014

This is article 267 of 270 in the topic energy

The promise of 20% of energy from non fossil fuels actually requires a slower growth rate for those sources than has been true up until now.  Meanwhile, the US has agreed to a dramatically greater reduction in carbon emissions.

As part of its plan, the U.S. said Wednesday it would double the average pace of its carbon-dioxide reductions after 2020, eyeing an overall reduction of greenhouse-gas emissions of between 26% and 28% by 2025, compared with 2005 levels. . . .

But the agreement requires that the Senate pass the UN Treaty.  It seems extremely convenient for China to make this agreement immediately after Republicans take control of the Senate.  It is unlikely that an agreement would have been ratified with the Democrats in control, but with the Republicans there, it will allow Obama to attack them when the treaty is defeated.

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