Perry Breaks Wind Over Obama's Carbon Cuts

Categories: Buzz

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Staff in Governor Rick Perry's office must have had a case of the Mondays. It was noon before we got his emailed statement blasting the Obama administration's proposal to cut carbon emissions from power plants 30 percent from 2005 levels over the next 15 years.

Seriously? That was, like, hours, and we all knew the proposal was coming. You'd think Perry's staff would have this stuff programmed on a keyboard shortcut by now. Good IT help is so hard to find, isn't it?

What did Perry say, you ask? Oh, that. Well, stop us if you've heard this before ...


"President Obama's decision to impose drastic new restrictions on America's energy industry is the most direct assault yet on the energy providers that employ thousands of Americans, and fuel both our homes and our nation's economic growth. Americans have seen the disastrous results of federal mandates with Obamacare, and these rules will only further stifle our economy's sluggish recovery and increase energy costs for American families. If President Obama is truly interested in an 'all-of-the-above' energy strategy, he would do well to look to states like Texas that have seen tremendous success at diversifying energy sources while protecting the environment from harmful pollutants."

The air Texans breathe today is cleaner than it was in 2000, even as our population has grown by nearly 5.2 million people. Furthermore:

  • Over the last 10 years, Texas has added more than twice the jobs of any other state;
  • Statewide, from 2000-2012, nitrogen oxide levels from industrial sources were reduced by 62.5 percent; and
  • From 2000-2012 ozone levels were reduced by 23 percent, a 12 percent greater reduction than the national average.

Perry made similar claims during his failed presidential run in 2011, and his numbers are, we suppose, technically accurate. We guess. That doesn't make his statement any less deceptive.

As this handy 2011 chart from The New York Times points out, Texas has indeed made great strides in reducing greenhouse gasses, ozone and its precursor nitrogen oxide, but then the state HAD huge strides to make, since it ranked No. 1 or No. 2 in all three categories of air pollutants. We called the Environmental Defense Fund to get their take on Perry's statement and some newer numbers, and will update when we hear back. As a general rule, though, whenever a politician starts citing percentages, it's best to swallow a little salt, since it's not difficult to show large shifts in percentages if the baseline numbers are lousy to start with.

What's also frustrating about Perry's repeated claim that the Texas way is the better way on environmental regulation is that it ignores the simple fact that Texas, despite what many of its residents might wish, is part of the United States and subject to the same EPA rules as other states. It's likely that Texas' improvement in air quality was prompted by the very federal regulations that Perry has fought so strenuously against, and not because of anything the state has done. Perry claims credit for the effect, but he's mum on the cause.

Of course, Perry might not be the only one spewing a little hot air here. Obama's carbon proposal runs more than 600 pages, affects all 50 states and would take effect as an executive order, not as an act of Congress, which has been unwilling to act on carbon caps. And it has a target end-date of 2030 to achieve its goals.

Seeing how there'll be a few elections between now and then -- not to mention litigation -- we suggest you don't run out and sell all your coal company stocks just yet. If you're a student in law school, however, consider focusing on environmental law. It looks to be a growth industry.



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31 comments
DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Rethuglycans = a Cancer on Society



Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

It's interesting to note that the GOP championed carbon emissions limits under Republican presidencies.  They also once championed what is now known as Obamacare.  It seems their hatred of Obama trumps their good sense in doing what is best for this country and its people. 

scottindallas
scottindallas topcommenter

Again, I am an organic gardener by trade.  I plant principally natives and perennials.  CAP AND TRADE IS A FINANCIAL SPECULATORS WET DREAM.  I think it wholly appropriate to cut the emissions of these plants by "30%" I wouldn't have a problem with more strident restrictions.  What I don't support is CAP AND TRADE!   Please be clear on the difference.  

lonestarlady
lonestarlady

'breaks wind?' who runs this blog? 13 year old boys?

mavdog
mavdog topcommenter

Rick Perry fails to recognize the positive effects that EPA madates have produced. Rather than "disastrous results" our nation's citizens have better heath because of the EPA mandates.

By law, the EPA has been instructed by Congress to address dangerous emissions, and several rulings have found that Greenhouse Gases are "air pollutants". This is not an Obama mandate, it was enacted in 1963 in the original Clean Air Act. The EPA is following the law.

The claims that the EPA mandate will cost the middle class "a lot of money" are not valid. The health benefits alone will make the costs of the mandate a zero sum number at worst, and with the improvements in efficiencies and the investment in technology the mandates will easily produce more than they subtract.

Yeah, our soon to be former Governor Rick Perry can't help himself, he must pander to the luddites who are against reducing air pollution due to the money it might take. Of course, those same people who oppose the reduction in pollutants scream for the government to stop regulating industry...until they are victims, when they scream about the government not protecting them.

JFPO
JFPO

Working in an Obama care jab while railing against something completely unrelated...is Ruddski writing his press releases now?

dingo
dingo

Obama: Frack on, America.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

Like Obamacare, this level of economic mandate is going to get blowback.

It should, because other sweeping fundamental changes, it's going to cost the middle class a lot of money.

Obama promised that O'Care would lowerthis, lower that, you can keep it yada yada, with so much proved fraudulent, and it's just beginning.

Here, we have a regulatory end-run around process to fundamentally change America, again, that Obama promised us would raise costs. A feature, not a bug.

Unfortunately for the middle class, that's a promise a Obama intends to keep.

ozonelarryb
ozonelarryb

If it's true, how does he think cleaner air happens? He forget about unleaded fuel, pulling sulphur from diesel, fuel injection, catalytic converters, epa CAFE standards.... whar a jackass. Does he think gm et al were gonna do this without prodding?

A freakin fantasy world there in Austin.

TheCredibleHulk
TheCredibleHulk topcommenter

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz

In a system where winning the argument is more important than doing the right thing, it will always turn out like this.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@bvckvs

Nah, the United States is OK, we just hate New Jersey.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@Mavdog

The claims that the EPA mandate will cost the middle class "a lot of money" are not valid.

Dammit, the president lied again!

All the extra costs of compliance will be absorbed by the energy companies, just to spite Obama.

roo_ster
roo_ster

The most plentiful greenhouse gas is water vapor and it is hardly a pollutant. Same thing with carbon dioxide. Epa has overstepped its bounds and needs to be beat like a red headed stepchild for many reasons not the least of which are its offenses to science and the scientific method.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@JFPO

When a government policy is unpopular, and the American people are growing leery and weary of the mandates of government, it's smart politics to lump the latest demands of unelected apparatchiks in with all the rest of the unpopular crap.

IOW, the stuff you're complaining about me (and the majority of Americans) complaining about

If he had seen the latest ABC poll, he might have mentioned Benghazi.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@ozonelarryb

To paraphrase Whoopi, there's prod then there's prod-prod.

This particular prod is going to, intentionally, hit the middle and middle-lower class hardest. Maybe the mid for and lower classes deserve it, having put such faith in the Fundamental Transformer.

Regardless, bend over, America begged for it.

scottindallas
scottindallas topcommenter

@TheRuddSki but they never exercised that during the 13 embassy attacks under Bush.  Double Standard hypocrisy, and you show your Foreign Policy news sources are really bad.  WaPo is really bad, a CIA spokesarm

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@TheCredibleHulk  Yes.  After Obama's speech, Wash Post/ABC poll found that 70 percent of Americans support federal limits on greenhouse gas emissions from power plants. Seventy percent also said that the federal government should "require states to limit the amount of greenhouse gases produced within their borders."

hentai.jeff
hentai.jeff

@roo_ster What you've just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone on this comment section is now dumber for having read it. I award you no points, and may god have mercy on your soul.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@TheCredibleHulk

You'd probably be better off just staying on that couch until 2016.

scottindallas
scottindallas topcommenter

@TheRuddSki what evidence do you have, if any of "cap and trade" being part of this?  It appears to be up to states to do some of this on their own terms (something I support) but I fear a cap and trade will indeed prove to be a scam for Goldman Sachs and a tragic waste of scarce resources.  I don't have a problem with EPA dictating a 30% reduction, even a real 30% reduction, that too has costs.  But, there's no need to bring the GS boys into the ring.

JFPO
JFPO

Your situational concern for the "lower classes" is amusing. This is directed at Ruddski, by the way, but it looks like the wasn't properly attributed to (once again).

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@Myrna

The American people demanded higher energy prices, and the President obliged them.

roo_ster
roo_ster

@hentai.jeff @roo_ster 

Please do us all a favor and stop exhaling CO2.  Do your part to stop global warming / climate change / unicorn buggery.  Whatever you want to call it, the important thing is for you to STOP BREATHING.

Oh, and yet more insertion of fact into this thread.  Please do not recoil from the fact content like a militant dyke from a penis.

http://www.physicalgeography.net/fundamentals/7a.html

Gas Name Chemical Formula Percent Volume Nitrogen N2 78.08% Oxygen O2 20.95% *Water H2O 0 to 4% Argon Ar 0.93% *Carbon Dioxide CO2 0.0360% Neon Ne 0.0018% Helium He 0.0005% *Methane CH4 0.00017% Hydrogen H2 0.00005% *Nitrous Oxide N2O 0.00003% *Ozone O3 0.000004%


RTGolden1
RTGolden1 topcommenter

@hentai.jeff @roo_ster I notice you don't provide any facts to rebut his statement though.  Which makes his statement, at BEST, the 2nd most insanely idiotic comment on this board.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@scottindallas

You and I will pay for it. We were promised.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@JFPO

"Your situational concern for the "lower classes" is amusing"

Why, because I champion policies that will actually be beneficial?

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@JFPO

I get that a lot, because I actually believe in the words of Dr. King and Cesar Chavez, for instance.

I think some people try to make that a bad thing because they do the opposite, championing policies that provably hurt lower-class Americans, while claiming to help them.

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