climate and energy legislation

Climate boondoggles: Carbon Capture doesn't stand up to the hype

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It doesn't even come close:

While many people think this is a new technology, it’s not. In fact, the US Department of Energy spent at least $6 billion over two decades on it. Not to mention the tax credits oil and gas companies have received for pilot projects.

Even the biggest projects stretch to absorb a few thousand tonnes of carbon dioxide. Meanwhile, we emit over 50 billion tonnes of greenhouse gases each year. That’s a million-fold gap. So, even if artificial carbon removal scaled 1,000x — which is still years and billions of dollars away at best — it would need to grow by another 1,000-fold even to be a small percentage of the solutions we need.

Understand, we could never even come close to the level of carbon capture that naturally exists on our planet. Trees and ocean life, such as seaweed and plankton, absorb a substantial amount of atmospheric carbon, while also producing oxygen. But this isn't just a boondoggle, it's actually a boon for fossil fuel companies:

Duke Energy's climate hypocrisy and greenwashing efforts

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Saying all the right words, but doing all the wrong things:

Both Southern and Duke say that their pro-climate positions are aligned with the pro-climate positions of two of their two largest trade associations, the Edison Electric Institute and the American Gas Association, citing boilerplate language from each.

EEI says that “global climate change presents one of the biggest energy and environmental policy challenges this country has ever faced.” AGA says that it is “committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions through smart innovation, new and modernized infrastructure, and advanced technologies.”

Just a quick reminder, the AGA is behind a new NC bill that forces cities to allow natural gas connections for buildings, even though the carbon footprint from said buildings is massive. The Edison Electric Institute has been a climate change denier since Jesus was in middle school, and they have particularly attacked renewable energy programs:

Climate Change Chronicles: More than just a relief bill

Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) are on the way out:

The coolant phase-down would be one of the most significant federal policies ever taken to cut greenhouse gas emissions, according to an analysis by the Rhodium Group, a research and consulting firm.

By 2035, the law would help avoid the equivalent of 949 million tons of carbon dioxide, the group estimated, which is similar in scope to the extra expected emissions from Mr. Trump’s climate policy rollbacks on vehicle pollution and methane from oil and gas operations.

Read that bottom part again. One of the biggest and most important steps we could take, but it merely offsets some of the damage Trump did to our efforts to deal with climate change. Here's a short history of the EPA's efforts to control this chemical:

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