at the Citizen Power Alliance 2010 Wind Conference
Eco-Taxes? Study Financed by U.S. Treasury Will Link Tax Code to Carbon Emissions
|Coming soon: a green tax code for American businesses and individual taxpayers alike?|
A major tax study currently being sponsored by the U.S. Treasury will give environmental activists a powerful new weapon in their campaign to alter the entire American economic and social landscape in the name of halting “climate change”—including the possible levying of new carbon taxes.
That campaign is bound to intensify in the aftermath of Nov. 6’s presidential election, regardless of who wins the race, as the nation faces the challenge of deficit reduction and tax reform that will be required to overhaul the country’s over-strained finances. Environmental advocates and others are likely to raise such innovative mechanisms as carbon taxes and major shifts in tax rates and incentives as part of the process—and the impending study may well provide them with important ammunition.
Under the bland title of Effects of Provisions in the Internal Revenue Code on Greenhouse Gas Emissions, the $1.5 million study is being carried out under the auspices of the National Academy of Science (NAS). Originally planned to take two years, the ambitious project aims to take an inventory of the U.S. tax code in terms of the effects of its most important provisions on the emission of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions—a huge and complicated exercise in environmental and economic modelling.
The study itself will not be available until after the election. Originally slated for completion in September of this year, its publication has since been postponed until the first quarter of next year.
Read the entire article
Town of Cape Vincent Board/Planning Board
NY officials: $37M will upgrade electricity grid
Fracking Opponents Out With New TV Ad
A coalition of groups opposed to hydrofracking are out with a new television advertisement in the Southern Tier today, attempting to cast doubt on the economic benefits of natural-gas drilling.
The 60-second spot will begin airing today in the Binghamton and Elmira television markets, according to New Yorkers Against Fracking. It’s being funded by Washington D.C.-based Food and Water Watch, one of the members of the coalition.
The ad features interviews with unnamed subjects who are said to be Pennsylvania residents. They criticize the natural-gas industry for everything from water issues to dropping home values before the narrator urges viewers to call Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
High-volume hydrofracking has been on hold in New York, but has been very active in Pennsylvania largely since 2007. Last month, New York officials announced that the Department of Health would review the Department of Environmental Conservation’s recommended regulations and guidelines for hydrofracking before any large-scale permits are issued.
Both Binghamton and Elmira sit above what is believed to be the most gas-rich portion of the Marcellus Shale in New York.
Joseph Martens: Fracking health experts coming 'soon'
Pa. to pay $200M to cover impact from gas drilling
Pennsylvania state agencies and local governments in places where natural gas drilling is under way are about to get checks from an impact fee fund that’s collected more than $200 million.
Gov. Tom Corbett and other Republican leaders announced the breakdown for counties, townships and boroughs at a Capitol news conference on Monday.
Officials say the checks should be going out from the state treasury over the coming 10 days. They cover drilling through 2011. The payments for 2012 are due July 1.
State law restricts how the money can be spent. Among the allowable uses are fixing roads and building or repairing water and sewer infrastructure.
Payment information: http://bit.ly/R0YaLR
GOP Senate candidate backs gas drilling, rips Gillibrand
Republican Senate candidate Wendy Long says developing upstate New York’s natural gas formations could bring desperately needed jobs and criticized Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand over the issue.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration is considering whether to allow the exploration of shale gas through the controversial process of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. It is not a federal decision, though Gillibrand says concerns about clean air and water should be addressed before drilling moves forward.
Long said during an Albany news conference Thursday that Gillibrand has cast her lot with the “far-left” environmentalists and celebrities who oppose fracking. Gillibrand campaign spokesman Glen Caplin said he would not comment on what he called conspiracy theories from a struggling campaign.
Long said Cuomo should move faster, but blamed the delay on outside pressure.
NY anti-frackers get win from Cuomo
Environmental groups fighting fracking say Gov. Andrew Cuomo's order for a new public health study is a sign he may be backing off his plans to allow the hotly debated extraction process.
While Cuomo insists he has made no decision, he has repeatedly said he will approve fracking if the science shows it can be done safely. And the study — if it finds no major threats — could give him the cover to move forward with more political benefits than hits.
"There is no step back," Cuomo told reporters in Syracuse last week when asked about the health study. "I think it will be a more thorough review and it will be a stronger review to withstand a legal challenge. ... Our lawyers say it will be more defensible in the event we're challenged."
Cuomo administration officials have worried privately that continued loud opposition to fracking, which injects chemically laced water into shale formations to release gas, could disrupt other policy work and the governor's re-election campaign without creating a single job.
Prediction: Gov. Cuomo Will Approve Fracking
Word comes from State Senate leader
The dean of the Albany press corps reports in the New York Post that there are predictions Gov. Cuomo will approved hydrofracking later this year or early in 2013. Fred Dicker says Deputy Majority Leader Tom Libous (R) from the Binghamton area believes Cuomo will approve fracking before the legislature returns to the capitol in the hopes of avoiding criticism and opposition.
Binghamton, like most of upstate New York, is suffering economically and hydrofracking creates many jobs.
Landowners knock Cuomo for hydrofracking delay
News of a renewed round of (potentially lengthy) delay in the state’s decision on whether to allow high-volume hydrofracking brought a round of restrained reaction from the natural-gas industry, which generally expressed disappointment but confidence in the process moving forward.
There was no such restraint from a coalition of pro-fracking landowners.
The Joint Landowners Coalition of New York—a collection of landowners groups from across the state—issued a rather scathing statement this afternoon, knocking Gov. Andrew Cuomo for having “turned his back” on landowners.
A selection from the lengthy statement:
“Our message to hypocritical opposition activists is this: If you are part of the Hollywood elite calling for delays in New York, you should be pleased that you have the Governor’s ear. Unfortunately, the Governor has turned his back on the landowners in New York and simply doesn’t care that we are struggling to pay the highest real property tax rates in the country, recovering from two devastating floods and watching as our communities decline, businesses flee and we bleed jobs such as the recent loss of 575 jobs expected from Sikorsky’s departure in Big Flats. We are baffled about how our state can ignore the biggest economic opportunity we will see in our lifetimes while we struggle to survive during the largest recession since the Great Depression. We hope Commissioner Shah is also considering the health effects of unemployment and poverty.”
Meanwhile, Clean Growth Now—a separate coalition that includes the landowners group and various business entities—has continued advertising in newspapers across the Southern Tier. One of its latest ads, pictured below, targets Cuomo by touting the support for hydrofracking shown by President Barack Obama, GOP nominee Mitt Romney and New York City Michael Bloomberg.
The Clean Growth Now ad is below. The full statement from the Joint Landowners Coalition can be read here.
This commercial is aptly named "Smooth Operator".
U.S. Senate Independent candidate Angus King has an uncanny ability to look into the camera or otherwise into the audience and say something he knows couldn't be more misleading. There is never a trace of guilt or shame when he does this. What is this man made of?
The camp owners of Roxbury Pond are justifiably devastated by what King and his partner the Yale University Endowment have done to their hard won paradise with their so called wind farm. (Read: Useless subsidy farm).
King's PR machine would have you believe everyone there couldn't be happier with his "wind farm". After all, when Angus came to town he made some promises and one of these was that he would never build a project unless it was fully acceptable to the local community. Here's what his website said:
Unfortunately, we now see that in Angus King's world, it is not the affected residents who determine what constitutes "acceptability", but rather it is Mr. King. Angus King and his elitist partner Yale know what is best for the people of Roxbury. I guess they have saved these poor people from themselves.
Ahead of hearing, Maziarz unveils bills aimed at coal plants
The chair of the state Senate’s energy committee is out with a new package of bills today which he says would help spur coal-fired power plants to switch to natural gas.
Sen. George Maziarz, R-Newfane, Niagara County, is set to formally unveil the bills today at a energy committee hearing in western New York today.
Maziarz’ legislation would allow power plants to take a 12.5 percent tax credit on any improvements that are necessary to comply with environmental standards laid out in the state’s new energy siting bill. The bills would also make changes to the state’s Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative program, allowing plants to take the money they pay for carbon credits and use it to transition to cleaner technology.
In particular, the bills are aimed at a number of struggling coal plants that represent a large share of their community’s tax base, such as former AES plants in Tompkins and Niagara counties. (The Tompkins County plant has alerted the state of its intention to mothball the facility come January.)
“That’s really what the hearing is about today, is not giving up on these plants,” Maziarz said in a phone interview. “Most of them are coal plants. They can be converted to natural gas plants, and the price of natural gas is the cheapest than its probably been since the mid-1980s.”
Cuomo Aide: No Timetable on Health Department Fracking Review
There is “not a timetable” on a newly added layer to the state’s review of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas, a top aide to Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday.
Last week, the state Department of Environmental Conservation asked the Department of Health to review its analysis of the health impacts of hydrofracking and gas drilling, likely delaying a final decision on whether to allow the technique in New York.
In a radio interview Monday, Director of State Operations Howard Glaser said the Health Department’s review is a preemptive move, in part to help prevent lawsuits. The DEC has been criticized extensively by environmental groups, who have said two draft versions of permitting guidelines and regulations for high-volume hydrofracking didn’t do enough to analyze potential health effects.
The state received close to 80,000 comments on drafts of its policy document—known as the Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement—and many called for a more extensive look at medical side effects, Glaser said.
DEC Chief Rejects Outside Study of Fracking Health Impacts, Asks Health Dept. to Get More Involved
The state’s top environmental regulator today dismissed calls for a lengthy, independent analysis of the health impacts of natural-gas drilling, instead calling on the Department of Health to appoint a panel to review the state’s assessments.
Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joseph Martens issued a lengthy statement late Thursday, acknowledging that he had been discussing the possibility of a health analysis with “parties on all sides of this issue” before laying out a compromise, of sorts.
Here’s a sample from Martens’ lengthy statement:
I have recently met with several of the groups who have raised public health concerns and it is clear they are not satisfied with the Department’s effort to address potential public health impacts. The groups would require that DEC conduct an outside health study that would determine the outcome of the final decision. I reject that demand. I believe it is highly likely that some of these groups will pursue litigation following the conclusion of the Departmental process if they do not agree with the outcome.
Instead, Martens said, he has asked state Health Commissioner Nirav Shah to assess the DEC’s own review of hydrofracking’s health impacts, and to appoint a panel of outside experts to advise him. A final DEC decision on whether high-volume hydrofracking can proceed in New York, he wrote, will wait until after Shah and the outside experts weigh in.
More PTC Fallout: Siemens Cuts 37% Of Its U.S. Wind Energy Workforce
|Citing "uncertain and changing market conditions" - including doubts surrounding the extension of the wind energy production tax credit (PTC) - Siemens Energy said it is laying off 615 employees - more than 37% of its U.S. wind power workforce - across its manufacturing, projects and administrative-support functions.|
The job cuts will be spread across the company's Hutchinson, Kan., nacelle assembly plant; its Fort Madison, Iowa, blade manufacturing facility; and its Orlando, Fla., Americas headquarters, which also serves as a base for about 200 field-based project support personnel, Siemens spokesperson Melanie Forbrick told NAW.
Just like many companies that have recently announced U.S. layoffs - including Vestas, Clipper Windpower, LM Windpower and DMI Industries - Siemens cited the looming expiration of the PTC as one of the reasons for the workforce reductions.
However, the company said other factors also contributed to the decision. For instance, the overall drop in wind turbine orders is also due to low natural-gas prices and a slow economic recovery.
(Click to read the entire article)
Cuomo announces launch of $30M clean energy initiative
|Gov. Andrew Cuomo today announced the launch of a $30 million initiative encourage the use of energy-efficiency technologies.|
The Energy Efficiency Market Acceleration Program, being implemented by the New York Power Authority, will fund research, market development activities and demonstration projects to help promote business development opportunities for emerging technologies, according to a news release.
In July 2012, the NYPA Board of Trustees authorized $30 million for the program.
“This public-private partnership will help bring innovative green technologies into the marketplace, helping spur economic investment in the clean-energy sector and protect our environment, while maintaining New York’s position as a leader in sustainability,” Cuomo said in a statement. “By supporting clean energy research and production, the state is helping create green jobs in communities across New York, while ensuring that our environment is protected for generations to come.”
The initiative focuses on accelerating the market development of energy-efficiency technologies by attracting technology companies to New York, assisting in the forming of strategic alliances and business development opportunities for those companies and training engineers, contractors and maintenance service providers.
To implement the initiative, NYPA today issued a request for proposals. Once selected, the awardee will identify commercial, but-not-yet-widely deployed clean energy products with significant promise for gaining market share. The request is available here.
Huge Downward Revision of Shale Gas Reserves
|The popping of the SHALE GAS MIRACLE just erased any remaining doubts that the world will be able to continue its delusion of maintaining business as usual… forever.|
For many years, the oil and gas industry has been hyping their new miracle baby called “SHALE ENERGY”. Through new advances in technology such as fracking, the U.S. Government first estimated the total shale gas reserves in the country at a staggering 827 trillion cubic feet. Furthermore, BP stated that shale gas and oil will make the United States self-sufficient by 2030.
However, cracks began to appear in the GREAT SHALE GAS MIRACLE when in January of this year, the U.S. Dept of Energy released new projections which cut the reserves to nearly half to only 482 trillion cubic feet. Even though this was a 42% decline in reserves… it is still a great deal of natural gas that the country can depend on. Or is it?
On Sept. 2nd, 2012, something very startling occurred. The USGS – United States Geological Society, came out with revisions to the shale gas fields’ reserves… and it wasn’t pretty. Before we get into the details of the data, let me give you some background information.
(Click to read the entire article)
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