Clearly America needs to reach for, and achieve, a Clean Energy Future.
Not so Clear is the Road we will take, if any, to ultimately get there ...
Kerry says Obama intends to move votes on energy
Reporting by Timothy Gardner and Richard Cowan, Editing by Sandra Maler, Reuters -- June 22, 2010
WASHINGTON - [...]
Obama is slated to meet leading Republican and Democratic senators on Wednesday to discuss a way forward for the energy legislation.
Kerry said the bill must include ways to price carbon but was not "locked into any one single way of doing it."
"The fact is if we don't price carbon, we will create one tenth of the jobs and reduce only one tenth of the emissions," he said. "It would essentially be an energy-only bill."
As far as Clean Energy plans go, here is ''New kid on the block' ... and it clearly has a few advantages -- not least of which is Simplicity.
The CLEAR Act, from Cantwell & Collins, Get Its Close-up
By Michael van Baker, Editor thesunbreak.com -- 06/21/10
[...] One striking thing about the CLEAR Act formulated by senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Susan Collins (R-ME) is its lack of heft: It's 39 pages. Another is that it would (in theory) pay a family of four an estimated $1,100 per year in dividends, to offset any extra costs in clean energy prices.
Senators can really appreciate a climate change bill that comes in under 1,000 pages (Waxman-Markey weighs in at 1,428, Kerry-Lieberman at 987), and the person-in-the-street tends to perk up at the idea of getting a check for $1,100. Who cares what it's for! (Cantwell and Collins call it a "cap-and-dividend" bill, and say , while driving the free market to seek out and implement clean energy options.)
80% by 2050 -- THAT, I did not know!
Maybe this plan will create incentives for individuals, to Go Green? and not just the Millionaire movers and shakers?
A cap-and-dividend way to a cleaner nation and more jobs
By Maria Cantwell and Susan Collins
Washington Post Friday, June 18, 2010
Our concept is simple: Instead of cap-and-trade, our approach is "cap-and-dividend," with the dividends going where they belong: into the pockets of hardworking Americans.
The legislation would set up a mechanism for selling "carbon shares" to the few thousand fossil fuel producers and importers through monthly auctions. and legal resident of the United States through equally divided rebate checks -- averaging $1,100 for a family of four each year.
; help reduce emissions in agriculture, forestry and manufacturing; and provide transition assistance for workers and communities in carbon-intensive regions.
The legislation aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 20 percent by 2020 and 83 percent by 2050.
Researchers at the New York University School of Law found that the legislation would generate good, "green jobs" in areas such as construction, solar power and mass transit because a predictable carbon price spurs investment in efficiency and cleaner-energy solutions.
US families get a $1,100 Dividend Check every year?
Sounds like the Oil-based Dividend checks, that Residents of Alaska get from the The Permanent Fund, just for being Alaskan Citizens -- and for letting Big Oil, have first dibs to their National Treasure.
Wouldn't it be nice to get a Check -- for making Big Oil, take a hike, from our future? ... No more Gulf of Mexico's -- No Thank You!
Sen. Cantwell to Meet with Obama Wednesday
By Josh Feit, Monday, June 21, 2010
Asked what Cantwell would tell the president, Cantwell’s office told PubliCola this morning:
Her message for the President will be the same one she’s been delivering to her Senate colleagues: the CLEAR Act offers —weighing in at 39 pages compared to 1,500 pages or more for some of the other bills;
it is the only Senate bill with Republican support (Susan Collins of Maine);
it puts a predictable price on carbon, which we need to incentivize growth of clean-energy alternatives,
but it keeps most Americans whole by paying dividends out of the funds raised in auctioning carbon shares;
it that could create instability in the energy field -- exactly the opposite of what we’re trying to achieve;
it focuses ... that is, on producers and importers of coal and oil, not users.
You can find the details on Sen. Cantwell’s CLEAR Act here, but the basic is this: As opposed to "Cap and Trade" -- a system in which the government auctions off a limited number of carbon permits to fossil fuel producers, with the money going to the government (while polluters trade their permits in a separate carbon market),
Cantwell’s "Cap and Dividend" would use the money to give rebates to utility customers, whose bills will certainly go up under the auction system.
Given the track record of 'Speculators', in the creatively demolishing the Mortgage Market, and given their herd-like behavior to blindly chase up the price of a Barrel of Oil, beyond what energy users could 'reasonably' bear -- Do we really want such 'Speculators' driving the demand for Green Technology and Jobs -- or the lack thereof -- depending on their 'trading whims' of the moment?
'Cap and Trade' -- or 'Cap and Tax' as the GOBP likes to call it -- has all the of Pain of Going Green, with none of 'pay back' to working Americans, except for maybe the knowledge of "having done a Good Deed" -- whenever they get to pay one of their higher Energy Bills, again.
The 'Cap and Dividend' relies on Carrots however, in addition to some classic Carbon Pricing "Sticks". SO that Energy Consumers get some help paying those inevitable higher Energy Bills.
The Cantwell-Collins 'Cap and Dividend' Bill, if passed, would have the Clean Energy Windfall Profits Checks being made out to The American Consumer -- NOT to the want-a-bee Carbon Futures players. Wall Street Speculators who couldn't give two wits, about preserving the planet -- if recent history is any guide.
The Clear Act: An explanation
Is the Clear Act perfect? Hardly!
Is it easy to explain, and easy to understand? Most Definitely.
Afterall what good is it to have ambitious Green Energy Goals, if they never get off of the Legislative Drawing Board, and out into our Energy Economy, in the first place?
Will 2020 pass us by -- with STILL No Progress, in preventing all that Carbon from being dumped into our Skies --
What Then? Perhaps a few more "sticks" then [as opposed to the Diviidend "carrots" now] will bring about the energy change, we will still need, even then?
But then again, Perhaps not.
For without the will to change, without the means to change, not much ever does ... They call it: Protecting the 'Status Quo' for a reason ... and until WE the Energy Consumer becomes 'part and parcel' to that Future Energy equation --
Until then ... 'Change' is just another Ideal ... in search of a Champion.
'Change' and a few bucks found in your Car Cushions, just might get you a Mocha Latte at your local Coffeeshop -- if you're lucky, that is.