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The following Powerpoint presentation is a draft document. It is not available for attribution and may not be reproduced or further distributed without the express permission of Dr. Schnare. You may contact Dr. Schnare at: TheHardLook@cox.net. Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy.
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The following Powerpoint presentation is a draft document. It is not available for attribution and may not be reproduced or further distributed without the express permission of Dr. Schnare. You may contact Dr. Schnare at: TheHardLook@cox.net
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy Commissioner Briefing Governor’s Commission on Climate Change Addressing Climate Change ~ Facts and Principles
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy Virginia’s Governor has established a climate change goal. This briefing explains why the Commonwealth will be unable to meet that goal why it is unnecessary to do so, and what the Commission can do to honor the intent of the goal. • Executive Order 59 • Duties of the Commission • The Commission is charged with preparing a Climate Change Action Plan that will: • Inventory the amount of and contributors to Virginia’s greenhouse gas emissions, and projections through 2025, • Evaluate expected impacts of climate change on Virginia’s natural resources, the health of its citizens, and the economy, including the industries of agriculture, forestry, tourism, and insurance, • Identify what Virginia needs to do to prepare for the likely consequences of climate change, • Identify the actions (beyond those identified in the Energy Plan) that need to be taken to achieve the 30% reduction goal, • Identify climate change approaches being pursued by other states, regions and the federal government.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy This Briefing will explain why the Goal is: • “Too little, too late” • “Too much, too quickly” • More likely than not irrelevant • Unnecessary to prevent catastrophic climate change • Finally, this briefing recommends an implementable approach to this goal that honors its intent.
400 2025 reflecting normal consumption growth Millions BTU per capita 2000 300 200 2025 Goal - reflecting population growth 100 Consumption “allowed” to meet the 400 ppm CO2eq IPCC Stabilization Goal Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy Virginia Per Capita Consumption Goal is “Too Little” To meet the IPCC stabili-zation goal, in 2025, Virginians would only be allowed to use 7.4% of their 2000 levels.
USGS Risk of Inundation Map Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy Even the IPCC Goal is “Too Late” • The goal attempts to prevent catastrophic climate change, especially from ocean level rise. • 23 foot ocean level rise at +2ºC • +2ºC Temperature rise at 400 ppm CO2eq. • We reached 450 ppm CO2eq in 2005. Tim Flannery (2007) • “The tipping point for perennial sea ice has likely already been reached.” Josefino Comiso (2007) • Goddard Space Flight Center
400 2025 reflecting normal consumption growth Millions BTU per capita 2000 300 200 2025 Goal 100 Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy Why is the Goal “too much, too quickly”? In the history of mankind, there is no evidence of an ability, much less a willingness by individuals or governments, to cut energy use by half over a 17 year period.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy Economic Measures of “Too Much” The market cost to cut state greenhouse gases by 30% is very expensive in direct cost and even more expensive in lost opportunity • $1,300 - $1,400 per Virginia family per year under a carbon tax or cap and trade program. • Virginians would suffer 55% reduction in auto use as well as hot water and home heating/cooling use. • Commercial and industrial production would have to decline by at least 25% and more likely 40%. • Governmental revenues (which pay for the social safety net) would drop by more than 30% due to lost commercial and industrial profits and inflationary impacts.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy Can’t Technology Reduce Greenhouse Gases Enough? “Preventing a planet wide meltdown is not a goal that can be achieved with current energy technology. I think we need to admit that and think bigger.” Professor Marty Hoffert, New York University. “The very best would be if emissions of the greenhouse gases could be reduced [to avoid catastrophic climate change]. Currently, this looks like a pious wish.” Paul J. Crutzen, Nobel Laureate for his work on the ozone hole
Political calls for a reduction of U.S. hydrocarbon use by 90%, thereby eliminating 75% of America’s energy supply, are obviously impractical. Nor can this 75% of U.S. energy be replaced by alternative “green” sources. Despite enormous tax subsidies over the past 30 years, green sources still provide only 0.3% of U.S. energy. Prof. A.B. Robinson Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy The Taboo Subject: Those who are not willing to look behind the “consensus” on climate change should disregard this part of the presentation. There remains a legitimate scientific skepticism that Greenhouse Gases are significantly related to meaningful levels of global warming.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy How Science Works • Science progresses by disproving hypotheses, not by proving them. It isn’t possible to “prove” a theory. • Thus, it isn’t possible to “prove” greenhouse gases cause climate change, although if repeated attempts to disprove this assumption fail, then we can have confidence in the assumption. • A single success in disproving the GHG – Climate Change assumption, one that can be and is reproduced by other scientists, destroys the assumption. • There is a legitimate argument that global warming alarmists have yet to overcome.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy • Preliminary Background: • Global Temperatures follow natural cycles reflecting the planet’s physical relationship to the sun and the behavior of the sun itself. • There are several such cycles occurring at more or less regular times, including 100,000 year, 40 year, and 11 year cycles.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy The 100,000 year cycle • We are now at or approaching a normal 100,000 year (interglacial) maximum. • The temperatures we observe today are less than four previous interglacial highs.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy The 500 Year Cycle Unlike the 100,000 year cycle, the 500 year temperature cycle is still in an upward swing and has yet to peak.
US Data Global Data Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy The 11 and 40 year cycles Both the 11 and 40 year cycles have just passed their peaks. The overall rise reflects the 500 year cycle.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy Background Summary • There are several warming/cooling cycles. • They appear to be independent of each other. • They add and subtract to each other. • They are naturally occurring. • Their existence, alone, neither proves nor disproves the hypothesis that GHG causes significant global warming.
Global Data Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy Facts undermining the hypothesis: Key Fact I – the 40 year cycle The 40 year cycle over the past 145 years includes both rises and falls in temperature.
6000 Anthropogenic CO2 Emissions (Millions Metric Tons Carbon) 4000 2000 Global Temperature Anthropogenic CO2 Emissions Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy Key Fact II – GHG Emissions do not predict some significant temperature fluctuation
Global Temperature Anthropogenic CO2 Emissions Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy The Arguable “Disproof” • Temperatures rose before significant elevation in GHG emissions (1860 – 1947). • Temperatures fell during significant rises in carbon emissions (1938 – 1967). • Temperatures rose after 1967 at the same rate (short-term and long-term) as prior to significant carbon emissions. • The physical effect of CO2 increases is immediate and if these emissions increases are significant, temperatures should rise within 5 years and rise at faster rates with larger CO2 emissions. • Because temperatures did not rise with CO2 increases and because they did not rise more quickly that historic trends, CO2 does not account for observed changes in temperature.
So What is the value of this “disproof” argument? • Public trust requires fiscal responsibility when making public investments. • Fiscal responsibility does not allow for risky ventures. • Because GHG-based responses to global warming are extraordinarily expensive, they will demand large public expenditures or revenue loses and thus they pose a serious risk to the social safety net. • The legitimate controversy over the cause of global warming argues for a conservative investment strategy.
In light of the necessity for a conservative social investment strategy and because “it’s too little, too late, too much and too soon” . . . Are there means to prevent catastrophic climate change other than by greenhouse gas emissions reductions? Fortunately, yes.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy • First we return to the assumption that GHGs will cause a temperature increase in excess of 2°C, and are expected to do so within a few decades. [per J. Hansen] Is there anything we can do? • In 1992, the National Academy of Sciences concluded that geoengineering could actually mitigate the effects of greenhouse gases. • Specifically, they concluded that mimicking volcanic eruptions by placing reflective particles high in the stratosphere might be the sole means of preventing catastrophic climate change if steps were not taken to limit greenhouse gases.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy What do Volcanoes Do? • They inject sulfates into the atmosphere. • Those sulfates block the sun. • This Solar Radiation Managmenet (SRM) reduces the global temperature.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy The Cost of GHG Reduction and Solar Radiation Management (SRM) Geo-engineering Too little too late Greenhouse Gas Reduction $150,000 Billion PV 40 yrs $3,100 Billion Geo-engineering Annual $ 1 Billion PV 40 yrs $ 20.6 Billion
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy The Relative Cost of GHG Reduction and SRM Geo-engineering Marginal Cost per Carbon Ton Equivalent GHG Reduction $ 1,400. Geo-Engineering $ 0.02
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy The Relative Cost of GHG Reduction and SRM Geo-engineering Annual Per capita Cost (world population) GHG Reduction $ 470. Geo-Engineering (pv40) $ 0.003
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy The economics of geo-engineering are—there is no better word for it—incredible. Scott Barrett, Johns Hopkins The geo-engineering option may be considered costless. William Nordhaus, Yale Cost would not play any significant role in a decision to deploy [geo-engineering] because the cost of any such system is trivial compared to the cost of other mitigation options. Prof. D.W. Keith, University of Calgary
And, there are other forms of Geoengineering • The second most cataclysmic global effect of increased GHGs is ocean acidification. • A recent Harvard publication indicates it is possible to remove acid from the ocean mimicking the natural process but reducing the timescale from 100,000s of years to decades. • In addition, local weather modification, as now routinely used in China, will become better controlled and provide relief for extreme conditions.
What is the Most Fundamental Policy Significance of a Geoengineering Solution? • Climate stabilization by solar radiation management (SRM) is so inexpensive, it is INEVITABLE that some nation will apply it. • When used as a pollution control device, ocean de-acidification and silicate neutralization, like SRM, mimics natural processes and would allow for significant continued use of carbon based fuels. • Thus, any other climate related social investments should take geoengineering into account.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy What is the significance of the Geoengineering solution to Virginia’s Climate Change Commission? • We still need to move to non-carbon energy. • We can take 200 years to do so. • We should not bankrupt the society in the mean time. • We must balance environmental goals against other social goals, including an aging population, health care, national security, and economic growth.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy In light of this briefing, the Commission could reasonably adopt the following policies. • Every proposed action must have purposes other than merely “climate change” : • Reduce social and actual costs. • Improve traditional environmental quality. • Spur economic growth within Virginia. • Reduce dependence on foreign sources of energy. • Guarantee maintenance of the social safety net. • Require no cost-inefficient action whose exclusive purpose is to reduce GHGs.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy Market-Based Examples that would satisfy these criteria and reduce GHGs in a cost-effective manner. I. Fully build out Nuclear Power At present 19% of U.S. electricity is produced by 104 nuclear power reactors with an average generating output in 2006 of 870 megawatts per reactor, for a total of about 90 GWe (gigawatts) (125). If this were increased by 560 GWe, nuclear power could fill all current U.S. electricity requirements and have 230 GWe left over for export as electricity or as hydrocarbon fuels replaced or manufactured.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy II. Invest in Switchgrass Biofuel Production Ethanol produced from switchgrass yields 540% of the energy used to grow, harvest, and process it into ethanol. Equally important, switchgrass is carbon neutral, as it absorbs essentially the same amount of greenhouse gases while it's growing as it emits when burned as fuel. Farmed switchgrass can be grown on millions of hectares of marginal land ill suited for agricultural crops, and produces nearly the same alcohol output per hectare, but with nearly zero nutrient runoff or soil loss.
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy III. Apply Non-Infrastructure Energy Conservation Management in all Government Buildings Example of energy savings resulting from intelligent energy use within existing buildings. Savings, costs, payoff schedules. Utility of state promotion of these Virginia businesses. Consider code changes?
Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy Notes and Citations Page 2 Executive Order 59: http://www.governor.virginia.gov/Initiatives/ExecutiveOrders/2007/EO_59.cfm Chart based on U.S. Energy Information Agency (EIA) state level data and a least squares projects of past use, inflated by population growth. See http://www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/states/sep_use/total/use_tot_va.html and see: http://www.virginiaplaces.org/population/index.html and http://factfinder.census.gov/servlet/GCTTable?_bm=y&-geo_id=04000US51&-_box_head_nbr=GCT-PH1&-ds_name=DEC_2000_SF1_U&-format=ST-2 Page 4: This table reflects US EIA data projected against population growth and a 30% reduction from 2000 consumption levels. The IPCC estimate is also based on US EIA data. See: Schwartz, J. “ Page 5: USGS, “National Assessment of Coastal Vulnerability to Sea-Level Rise: Preliminary Results for the U.S. Atlantic Coast” U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 99-593, E. Robert Thieler and Erika S. Hammar-Klose Woods Hole, Massachusetts 1999; see: http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/1999/of99-593/ . Flannery, T. “Greenhouse gas levels 'far worse than predicted‘”, ABC News, October 9, 2007 http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2007/10/09/2054191.htm . Turney, Chris, “Tipping Point Already Reached”, http://www.celsias.com/2007/10/10/has-the-tipping-point-been-reached-already/ . Cosimo, J., “Climate Tipping Points Come in from the Cold”, Science, Vol. 319, p. 153, January 11, 2008 Page 7 Nordhaus,w. “The Challenge of Global Warming: Economic Models and Environmental Policy” http://nordhaus.econ.yale.edu/dice_mss_072407_all.pdf Page 8 Crutzen, P.J., 2006, “Albedo Enhancement by Stratospheric Sulfur Injections: A Contribution to Resolve a Policy Dilemma?” Climatic Change, 77: 211-219, available at http://downloads.heartland.org/19632.pdf . Hoffert, quoted in Rolling Stone: http://www.climos.com/articles/candr.htm
Page 14: Robinson, A.B., et al. (2007) “Environmental Effects of Increased Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide, J. Am. Phys. Sur. 12, 79-90. See: http://www.jpands.org/vol12no3/robinson600.pdf This article has been critically reviewed. While some errors have been identified in the paper, and several conclusions are probably not justified, the relationship of fossil fuels to temperature variation remains a legitimate basis for disputing the significance of GHGs with regard to temperature increases. The criticism of the Robinson paper is presented at the RealClimate Wiki. See: http://www.realclimate.org/wiki/index.php?title=OISM Page 18-19: Global temperature data source: http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/info/warming/ Page 21: Global temperature data source: http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/info/warming/ Anthropogenic CO2 emissions data source: http://www.eia.doe.gov/oiaf/1605/ggccebro/chapter1.html Page 22: “Policy Implications of Greenhouse Warming” – NAS 1992 Page 29: “Engineered weathering process might mitigate climate change”http://harvardscience.harvard.edu/engineering-technology/articles/engineered-weathering-process-might-mitigate-climate-change Page 33: Robinson, A.B., et al. (2007) “Environmental Effects of Increased Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide, J. Am. Phys. Sur. 12, 79-90. See: http://www.jpands.org/vol12no3/robinson600.pdf