05/03/2013 05:45 pm ET Updated Jul 03, 2013

Climate Chatter the House

2013-05-03-hearingmashup.jpg Some quotes from the April 25th Subcommittee on Environment hearing entitled "Policy Relevant Climate Issues in Context."

I testified in front of the House Subcommittee on Environment last week. Here’s some of what was said...

quotation marksToday's hearing is intended to provide members a high-level overview of the key factors that should inform our decision-making on what is unfortunately one of the most controversial public policy issues of our day.quotation marks


--Rep. Chris Stewart (R-UT), Subcommittee chair

Climate Models Critiqued by House Member

quotation marksConsensus climate models have such poor track records. These models regularly overstate the temperature changes.quotation marks


--Subcommittee chair Stewart

Fact check: see this graphic.

Who Cares About U.S. Emissions Anyway?

quotation marksCutting U.S. emissions will have little or no effect on global greenhouse gas emissions.quotation marks


--Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX), chair of Committee on Science, Space and Technology

Fact check: In 2008, the United States emitted 19 percent of all global greenhouse gas emissions.

On Emissions: The Costs of Cutting vis-à-vis Recent U.S. Trends

quotation marksThere are advocates that the U.S. needs to cut its CO2 emissions. … All that does is put us at an economic disadvantage ... our quality of life will go down.quotation marks


--Rep. Randy Weber (R-TX)

quotation marksI’m worried that [Obama's] anticipated restrictions on industrial CO2 emissions will have no discernible impact on the climate but will amount to a significant energy tax on the American people.quotation marks


--Committee chair Stewart

quotation marksThe U.S. reduced its CO2 emissions by 12% over the last seven years.quotation marks


--Subcommittee chair Smith

With respect to high costs of lowering carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, it is relevant to note that that 12 percent cut in emissions that Congressman Smith pointed to (and the kind of cuts his colleagues claimed would be so economically painful) came about while the U.S. gross domestic product increased by increased by more than 5 percent (in real dollars) over the same period.

A Topic of Some Interest: The Price of My Home and the Planet

quotation marksThere is, of course, much room for debate about what policies should be implemented to respond to climate change and its impacts, but uncertainty is not a reason for inaction. We, as individuals and as a society, often act in the face of uncertainty... I, for example, cannot predict if, let alone when, there will be a fire in my house, but I pay for fire insurance.quotation marks


--Bill Chameides, witness

quotation marks[Yes, but what if] ... your house is worth $100 thousand but it costs $200 thousand for that insurance?quotation marks


--Committee chair Stewart

quotation marksIt's easier to replace a house than a planet.quotation marks


--Ranking Member Rep. Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR)

Question That Stumped All the Witnesses Is Answered by the Questioner

quotation marksAre y'all aware of the amount of energy required to run an electricity grid the size of ... Texas ... how much is AC and how much is DC?

[Witnesses respond that they do not]

Well, I own an air conditioning company and I can tell you it's a huge amount.quotation marks"

--Rep. Weber

A Final Insight on Climate Change

quotation marksMaybe the sun has something to do with itquotation marks.

--Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA)

Related Links

• Climate Change Chatter, Issue 1

• Climate Change Chatter, Issue 2

• Climate Change Chatter, Issue 3

• Climate Change Chatter, Issue 4

• Climate Change Chatter, Issue 5

• Climate Change Chatter, Issue 6

• Climate Change Chatter, Issue 7

• Climate Change Chatter, Issue 8

Crossposted with TheGreenGrok and National Geographic's Great Energy Challenge blog | Find us on Facebook