U.S. Republicans Vote to Defund EPA

Posted: February 19, 2011 by tallbloke in climate, Politics

Image courtesy of thechillingeffect.org

The backlash continues. The U.S. House of Representatives has voted to cut the EPA’s funding, with specific reference to carbon dioxide emission regulation. Story here:

Dr Alan Carlin whose critical report on the AGW hypothesis was gagged by the EPA will be having a wry smile about all this.

Republican Ted Poe said:

“I am pleased that my colleagues in the House have chosen to put a stop to the back-door attempts by the administration to bypass Congress and circumvent the will of the American people…..The era of EPA overstepping its authority by imposing over-burdensome and unnecessary regulations at the expense of American businesses is over.”


I hope this won’t affect the good and necessary work the EPA does to regulate really important environmental issues and pollutants. As an ecologically sensitive person, this is what I’ve feared all along. That the rejection of the AGW global warming hypothesis would lead to a backlash against all things ‘green’ (with a small ‘g’).

Update: The vote is in. 244 to 179

From around the blogs:

http://motls.blogspot.com/2011/02/house-votes-to-ban-us-funding-for-ipcc.html

http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/house/145245-republicans-attempt-to-defund-qnefariousq-global-warming-research-group

http://www.climatesciencewatch.org/2011/02/19/house-votes-244-179-to-kill-u-s-funding-of-ipcc/

http://climaterealists.com/index.php?id=7247&linkbox=true&position=1

http://biofuels.einnews.com/pr-news/294528-gop-efforts-to-defund-ipcc-is-foolhardy

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/02/19/house-votes-to-defund-ipcc/

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hNY9IzmIjoNmOK0lS-EGP99jBodQ?docId=91260a60cd08423e9c8ede7d78355847

Comments
  1. Baxter75 says:

    “As an ecologically sensitive person, this is what I’ve feared all along. That the rejection of the AGW global warming hypothesis would lead to a backlash against all things ‘green’ (with a small ‘g’).”

    I dunno about that, you might want to check out the latest activities of your so virtuous greenies. For one source: http://motls.blogspot.com/
    There are many other examples

  2. tallbloke says:

    Baxter, please read what I wrote in brackets. I’m talking about my personal concern for taking care of the environment. I’m not interested in supporting BIG GREEN POLITICS which hitched its wagon to the AGW gravy train years ago.

  3. Ian W says:

    The main issue that needs to be addressed in the USA is that The 10th Amendment to The Constitution does not give authority to the Federal Government to have many of these ‘agencies’. They often do (or have done) _really good_ work in some areas but it is NOT the Federal (Congress/Administration) government’s job. Read the 10th Amendment.
    The same mission creep can be see in the European Union where the ‘subsidiarity’ intent is being repeatedly flouted by attempts at forcing European Commission control over detailed facets of the government of the individual states.

    Probably the best way for environmental protection to be carried out in the USA is for the each of the States in the federation to nominate someone to represent them in a body to set advisory environmental regulations. The advice can then be implemented legally by the individual states – if they so wish.

    Surprisingly there is a body in Europe that does just this – it is EUROCONTROL the European agency for the safety of air navigation. It actually has more member states than the European Union. Each member state sends their Transport ministry/department representatives and provides an agreed level of funding. EUROCONTROL collects and distributes the ‘route charges’ for all aircraft flying at high level through the states’ airspaces. The output from EUROCONTROL is not regulatory but advisory although most member states follow the advice. The ‘Single European Sky’ concept of EUROCONTROL is also advancing and rapidly updating the provision of air traffic services faster than elsewhere in the world – so the model works.

  4. Roger Andrews says:

    Two related postings here; this one and the earlier one on the vote to cut IPCC funding.

    The vote to cut EPA funding is good.The EPA richly deserves to get defunded on this one. Classifying CO2 – a substance essential to life on earth – as a “pollutant” is surreal.

    The vote to cut IPCC funding is not so good. The “team” or “cabal” of IPCC scientists, or whatever you want to call them, suppress dissenting scientific views by doing their best to make sure that dissenting papers don’t get published. Congress now wants to do the same thing in reverse by cutting off funding to the IPCC. As far as I’m concerned this makes one as bad as the other.

  5. Alan McIntire says:

    I disagree with Roger Andrews here. The IPCC is basically a POLITICAL, not a scientific organiztion. Cutting off funding to political organizations you disagree with is perfectly acceptable.

  6. Roger Andrews says:

    Alan:

    Well yes, the IPCC can be regarded as a political organization, and the US Congress is certainly at liberty to cut off funding to political organizations it doesn’t agree with. But the problem is that every time someone does something like this we get more polarization and less interchange. The IPCC, for example, won’t react to the US Congress vote by opening its doors to skeptics. It will just get the money from somewhere else and dig in its heels even deeper.

  7. tallbloke says:

    Roger: IPCC is funded by other countries too. I’d love to know the total budget.

    Alan: It’s a symbolic act. Will congress overturn it?

  8. P.G. Sharrow says:

    The only way to get a bureaucrats’ attention is cut off the money. Nothing else will work. They are elitists, that “know what is best for you” no matter what you want or what facts you present. The way of the future is small local government carried out in co-operation. I grew up in a very small towns area. The locals decided what was needed and “got’er done” with their own money and work. As I hope will be done here. Give up on “OPM” ( other peoples’ money) too many strings attached. Those AGW people can not function without OPM and they can not make a living with out it. pg

  9. Robert E. Phelan says:

    It should be kept in mind that the legislation has passed, so far, only in the House on a pretty much party-line vote. The Democrats dominate the Senate, which is the next hurdle, and the President has said he will veto the legislation. Both sides will want to avoid a shut-down of government, so a compromise will likely be reached allowing each to claim “victory”. Since the point of the legislation is not directly addressing EPA and CO2, but is rather to reduce government spending in general, and does so in a number of areas, don’t be surprised if the “pragmatists” restore the EPA and IPCC funding.

  10. tallbloke says:

    Hi P.G. Well, we manage to get our ‘citizen science’ done here on a zero budget. And we’re closer to being able to correctly predict the future climate than the IPCC or EPA is too.

  11. Roger Andrews says:

    Tallbloke:

    The IPCC budget for 2010 was $4,795,960, but this doesn’t include “generous contributions by the Governments of Japan, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States of America”. If we assume the other three countries generously contribute as much as the US then the total IPCC budget would be around $50 million.

    If someone gave us that much money I think we might even be able to figure out how the earth’s climate works.

  12. tallbloke says:

    Roger:
    I’m working with Tim on a post regarding a set of algorithms that predict TSI.

    We will be showing the next 20 years to start with.

  13. Zeke the Sneak says:

    Nevertheless, the spending cuts will force Senators to a vote, and they will have to face their constituents at home if they vote against the cuts in this bill.

    The flip side of the coin is the fact that what the Democrats really want is to raise the debt ceiling yet again, to over 14 trillion.

    So 1.) they should have to take a stand on these cuts, and 2.) they will certainly have to shut up about more borrowing. And just because the media is not saying anything, we all know well the unemployment and gas prices are high, and economic growth has been under the killing shadow of possible raised taxes and Obamacare expenses kicking in.

  14. Ian W says:

    @Robert E Phelan

    The Congress can refuse to pass any changes made by the Senate – the bill stops; OR the Senate agree the defunding and the President vetoes it. In both these cases the Federal government as a whole becomes unfunded from mid March 2011 and all federal employees are furloughed until the budget IS agreed.
    The people causing the bill to fail are the Democrats that put the EPA (and its Waxman Markey Regulations as an end-run around congress) above the funding of the rest of the Federal government. Then the GOP in Congress say that they are doing this to protect thousands of jobs and the poor who would not be able to afford the energy under EPA regulations that the _Democrats_ want to fund.
    I would not bet on the EPA getting its funding back

  15. Robert E. Phelan says:

    Zeke:
    My concern is that an awful lot of Congressional Democrats have been willing to fall on their swords for the agenda. They took the voter abuse after health care was passed and a number then “retired” to avoid facing the electorate… paving the way for “different” Democrates to run and, in some cases, get elected. Here in Connecticut, Chris Dodd was a sure loser, but he stepped down and the “different” Democrat, Blumenthal, won the election.

    Ian:
    One way to look at the fnding measure is that the cuts are kind of a smorgasbord of cuts representing several agendas. I imagine there was quite a bit of horse-trading going on among the Republicans: “I’ll support your cut if you support mine”. In a sense, the overall point of the bill is to cut spending in general, not any particular spending. If the Republicans go for a compromise, some of those cuts may be rescinded and I’m not confident that EPA will not be among them. As for letting the government shut down, I’m enough of an anarchist at this point to almost welcome the event, but it’s not certain that the Democrats will be blamed if it happens. It all depends on how it is framed. The impasse in Wisconsin at the moment is a little frightening…. and worth noting that a huge number of the anti-austerity protestors are unionized public service employees who in many cases are already earning more than the people they serve.

  16. tallbloke says:

    Roger:
    “The IPCC budget for 2010 was $4,795,960, but this doesn’t include “generous contributions by the Governments of Japan, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States of America”. If we assume the other three countries generously contribute as much as the US then the total IPCC budget would be around $50 million.”

    From last nights debate:
    Leutkemeyer: The international panel the last year or two has been funded at the rate of about $12.5 million per year. The President has it in his 2012 budget at $13 million a year. This group has been in the headlines for their activities with regard to how they are trying to tinker with the data they put out. Why would we want to fund a group of folks who are nefarious and give us incorrect information? It’s beyond me.
    http://www.climatesciencewatch.org/2011/02/19/house-votes-244-179-to-kill-u-s-funding-of-ipcc/

    So where’s the missing shilling?

  17. tallbloke says:

    Taphonomic says:
    February 19, 2011 at 9:20 am (Edit)
    Galvanize says:
    “Is it up to the Senate to drive this nail home?”

    The Senate doesn’t like this.

    This is for a new continuing resolution for Fiscal Year 2010 (October 2010 through September 2011). So far a budget for this fiscal year (FY) has never been passed and the government is operating on a “continuing resolution”, which means that everything is funded as it was for FY 2009. The previously elected House of Representatives shirked its duty to prepare a FY 2010 budget (afraid of the political fallout in an election year; it didn’t really help them much, passing Obamacare led to a slaughter of Democrats). This new FY 2010 continuing resolution proposed by the Republican majority House of Representives contains many things that the Democatic majority Senate and president do not like (cuts to EPA, funding for Yucca Mountain, cuts to Planned Parenthood, cuts to National Public Radio, cuts to the IPCC, etc). The Senate and the House can try to reach an agreement that the President will either sign or veto. If not, the House and Senate will either pass another continuing resolution at FY 2009 levels or shut down the government. The current continuing resolution runs out of funding on March 4. The Democrats in the Senate are already threatning that after March 4, checks for Social Security, Medicare, etc. will not be sent out as the governement will be shut down due to the Republicans.

    Ain’t politics fun???

  18. Tenuc says:

    Can’t wait to see how this pans out over the coming months and what compromises will be made to get the budget through. The thought of the possibility of the budget not being agreed makes me wonder who is pulling the strings and what the end game is.

  19. Zeke the Sneak says:

    “The Democrats in the Senate are already threatning that after March 4, checks for Social Security, Medicare, etc. will not be sent out as the governement will be shut down due to the Republicans.

    Ain’t politics fun???”

    The state next door to me once told voters that if they did not pass the tax hikes, they would have to release prisoners and reduce the police force.

  20. tallbloke says:

    kforestcat says:
    February 19, 2011 at 9:49 am

    As a side note, NOAA was also brought to heel by Chairman Hall via an amendment 495 “to prohibit the use of funds to implement, establish, or create a NOAA Climate Service…” The vote passed 233 to 187.

  21. tallbloke says:

    “governement will be shut down due to the Republicans.”

    Not due to

    “back-door attempts by the administration to bypass Congress and circumvent the will of the American people”

    then?

    Interesting. Who will blink first?

  22. Roger Andrews says:

    Tallbloke:

    Not sure there is a missing shilling. As far as I can tell (and anyone with better info is welcome to post a correction) the +/- $12.5 million represents the total contribution of the US, UK etc. to the IPCC, which added to the IPCC’s $5 million direct budget comes out to about $17.5 million. But that’s still not bad for an outfit with only ten employees.

  23. Cthulhu says:

    Nevermind that Dr Alan Carlin’s “report” was [snip].

    No quality never matters. Just whether it supports the [snip] meme.

  24. tallbloke says:

    Roger:
    Not sure.

    From last nights debate:
    Leutkemeyer: The international panel the last year or two has been funded at the rate of about $12.5 million per year. The President has it in his 2012 budget at $13 million a year.

    So either the U.S. is footing $13m or someone’s back pocket is bulging.

  25. tallbloke says:

    Cthulhu:

    Mind your language please. If you want to debate anything specific, that’s fine, but keep it civil.

  26. tallbloke says:

    Carlin’s comments on the EPA endangerment finding are available at the bottom of this article. It’s worth reading the blog post too.
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/06/27/released-the-censored-epa-document-final-report/

  27. Tenuc says:

    Cthulhu says:
    February 19, 2011 at 10:26 pm
    “Never-mind that Dr Alan Carlin’s “report” was [snip].

    No quality never matters. Just whether it supports the [snip] meme.”

    Thanks Rog, I just love fill-the-blanks-in puzzles…

    S1 = [buried by the Obummer Administration]
    S2 = [IPCC cabal of climate scientists CAGW]

    It is perhaps not surprising that people are getting so frustrated and angry by this scam that they feel compelled to resort to invective. Politicians will soon be getting a reminder, I think, that the are the servants of the electorate and can only rule with the consent of the people.

    I hope that the politicians of the western world heed the lessons of Tahrir Square before it is too late. They must never forget that we are many whilst they are few or they’ll be completely [self-snip]. 🙂

  28. tallbloke says:

    Star post tenuc, thanks, I needed a grin before bedtime. It’s been a long day.

  29. Robert E. Phelan says:

    Gee, when I first read Carlin’s report I thought he made a lot of sense, but I can see the light now. Thank you, Cthulhu, for making everything so clear. No need for me to rely on my own judgement when some anonymous troll can make all my decisions for me.

    By the way, Cthulhu, you do realize that Lovecraft made you the incarnatiion of inhuman evil, right?

    [edit] Easy Tiger.

  30. tallbloke says:

    Pooh, Dixie | February 20, 2011 at 1:06 am | Reply
    Carlin, Alan. 2009. Climategate and EPA. Scientific Blog. Carlin Economics and Science. December 1. http://www.carlineconomics.com/archives/588

    Kazman, Sam. Letter to Environmental Protection Agency2009. Re: Proposed Endangerment and Cause or Contribute Findings for Greenhouse Gases under Section 202(a) of the Clean Air Act, Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2009-0171. June 23. http://cei.org/cei_files/fm/active/0/Endangerment%20Comments%206-23-09.pdf

    Email # 3: March 17 email from Mr. McGartland to Mr. Carlin, stating that he will not forward Mr. Carlin’s study.
    “The time for such discussion of fundamental issues has passed for this round. The administrator and the administration has decided to move forward on endangerment, and your comments do not help the legal or policy case for this decision.
    …. I can only see one impact of your comments given where we are in the process, and that would be a very negative impact on our office.”

    So, Mr McGartland would rather see the endangerment fining for a potential non-problem go through than have a “very negative impact on our office”.

    Doesn’t seem very scientific. I can understand he’d be under a lot of pressure from above though.

    As Jerry Ravetz said about quality on this blog:

    “it is impossible to make a complete specification of tasks at the lowest level; evasion of imposed standards is always possible. Hence if operatives do not believe in the system to some extent, it will fail. Their adherence to the system will depend on their morale, and that is conditioned by what they observe of the behavior of those who govern them. In that sense, corruption starts at the top.”

  31. Tenuc says:

    tallbloke says:
    February 20, 2011 at 7:58 am
    “…So, Mr McGartland would rather see the endangerment finding for a potential non-problem go through than have a ‘very negative impact on our office’…”

    This is a common problem across the whole of climate ‘science’, which stopped being a quest for understanding a long time ago (probably since the 80’s). Instead it became a cargo cult science driven by politicians, at the behest of their wealthy masters, to search for the holy grail – ‘proof that mankind is destroying the planet with deadly CO2’.

    With $Trillions at stake, along with the plan to enforce adoption of a world government, no surprise to me that sceptical science has been treated so badly. However, they have been far too slow in bringing their strategy to fruition and the current cooling climate oscillation has largely scuppered their chance.

    We the tax-payers, mainly in the west, will be left to pick up the bill for the vast sums already spent; with trust in the MSM – democracy – science in general – concern about the environment, having been dealt an unreconcilable blow. This affair will likely end in a lose/lose outcome, but this is better than the win/lose scenario these money-grubbing globalists had planned.

  32. tallbloke says:

    Well, I look on the bright side. A lot of good and useful science has been done along the way, and we can toss away the mistaken (being non-controversial) interpretation and attribution and still use the data for forming better hypotheses about the causes and effects of climate change.

    This can have practical application in forming better agricultural policy going forward, and better planning for urban expansion as population increases. Once we’ve been successful in making solar activity predictable on this site, I anticipate the climate community will be only too happy to suddenly rediscover the sun as the most important climate factor.

    We are not far away from that ability now, exciting things are happening in the background.

  33. Tenuc says:

    Your right Rog, there have been benefits, but just imagine if what a good position we would have been in if all the money being squandered on CAGW had been spent on real science instead!

    The biggest surprise to me is how this attempt to stifle science has lead to a large band of unpaid real scientists, like yourself, who are standing the way scientific discovery works on its head.

    I’m looking forward to seeing the results of your “exciting things are happening in the background” quote, and my thoughts are that it is extraterrestrial forces which are the real drivers of the changes we observe in our biosphere. This force being regulated by the various quasi-cyclical oscillations seen in our complex, dynamic and chaotic climate system.

  34. Tenuc says:

    This is an interesting short essay on “DEMOCRACY IN SCIENCE”, by Miles Mathis. It shows how post 1920 a sea change occurred, to the detriment of modern science….

    http://milesmathis.com/1920.html

    [Edit] Posted, thanks Tenuc