By David Rothbard and Paul DriessenThousands of politicians, bureaucrats and environmental activists have gathered in Rio de Janeiro for the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, which runs through Friday. This time, 20 years after the original 1992 Rio Earth Summit, delegates are minimizing references to “dangerous man-made climate change” to avoid repeating the acrimony and failures that came from the United Nations‘ recent climate conferences in Copenhagen; Cancun, Mexico; and Durban, South Africa. Instead, Rio+20 seeks to shift international focus to “biodiversity” and supposed threats to plant and animal species as the new “greatest threat” facing planet Earth. This rebranding is [...]
For over half a century, picturesque Lake Tschida in southwestern North Dakota has been the destination of choice for residents of nearby communities to spend warm summer weekends with friends and family. In this semiarid part of the Northern Plains, where recreational lakes are few and far between, the reservoir has attracted cabins and mobile homes, whose owners lease lakefront parcels of land from the Bureau of Reclamation. But if the bureau has its way, an arrangement that has worked well for decades will be cast aside, with the owners of all 114 mobile homes being told to pack up and [...]
CHURCHVILLE, VA—Bjorn Lomborg and his Copenhagen Consensus have just joined one of the smallest clubs in today’s world: people who believe that high-yield farming is the path to a sustainable future for people and wildlife despite, and even because of, its pesticides, chemical fertilizers, irrigation dams, and blast-freezers. Lomborg, famous for his book The Skeptical Environmentalist, summons a quadrennial panel of distinguished economists to examine where the world might invest more effectively to solve solvable problems. In 2004, his panel recommended more investment in fighting HIV/AIDS. In 2008, they suggested more investment in delivering micronutrients to malnourished populations. This year, [...]
When the President says “all-inclusive,” he means politically correct (PC) “green” energy (wind, solar and bio-fuels), and nothing that actually provides reliable, affordable power – especially not hydrocarbons. Another PC buzzword – “sustainable” – is right out of the United Nation’s Agenda 21 Protocol and the President’s goal of “fundamentally transforming” America.
The Sierra Club and other environmental pressure groups are redoubling their efforts to “stop fracking in its tracks.” No wonder. The technology is an existential threat to fundamental “green” dogmas.
A federal judge March 23 ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) overstepped its authority when it revoked a permit for Arch Coal Inc. to proceed with its controversial Spruce No. 1 mining operation in the Appalachian mountains.In 2007, Arch Coal obtained a “dredge and fill” permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers allowing it to move forward with the Spruce No. 1 mine in rural Logan County, West Virginia. But in January 2011, EPA revoked the permit, arguing that the project would do significant harm to streams and watershed areas near the mine. The Spruce Mine had been the [...]
By Dr. Jeff EdgensProperty rights in America are sinking to the bottom of a regulatory swamp. The biggest threat to property rights is unchallenged bureaucratic decisions that command property owners to do the bidding of the EPA while not allowing those citizens the opportunity to be heard. One couple caught in this legal quagmire is Mike and Chantell Sackett, of Priest Lake, Idaho, where they bought property in 2008 to build the home of their dreams. They secured all of the necessary permits and began work to fill the land and to prepare the site for the construction of their lake [...]
Africa is suffering serious drought again—in both the Horn of Africa (Somalia, Ethiopia, and Kenya) and in West Africa’s Mali. How bad is the drought likely to get? Three years ago, the New York Times reported a study of the lakebed sediments in Ghana’s Lake Bosumtwi. Lead author Tim Shanahan of the University of Texas said Africa gets serious drought every 30 to 65 years—but “changing Atlantic sea-surface temperatures” are capable of triggering “much longer and more severe future droughts.” The Bosumtwi mud revealed a West African megadrought during the Little Ice Age that lasted from 1400 to 1750! The trunks [...]
Determined to concentrate power in the hands of largely unaccountable bureaucrats in Washington, Obama administration officials have devised a new scheme to justify expanding the regulatory reach of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
By Duggan Flanakin and Redmond WeissenbergerOilfield workers in Alberta, refinery workers in Texas and countless factory workers just learned that the White House will not allow construction of an oil pipeline that would bring over half a million barrels of oil a day from Canada’s Alberta Province and North Dakota’s Bakken Field to refineries in Texas and Louisiana. The job-killing decision was a victory for radical environmentalists and well-heeled U.S. foundations that have long battled Canadian oil sands companies and the U.S. oil and gas industry. President Obama says Congress gave him insufficient time to examine environmental issues. TransCanada Keystone Pipeline LP [...]
By Duggan Flanakin (reviewer)The central theme of Deep Green Resistance, written by Aric McBay, Lierre Keith, and Derrick Jensen (author of Endgame), is simple. To save the planet, its wildlife and some of its people, the enlightened few must rise up in resistance – not to reform, but rather to totally tear down the corporate capitalist economic system, and even civilization itself as we know it. Jensen presents his thesis in the book's preface. "The dominant culture – civilization – is killing the planet, and it is long past time for those of us who care about life on earth to [...]
If ever there were a case study in the absurdity of industrial policy, the federal mandates for cellulosic ethanol should be exhibit number one.
Maryland has become the latest flashpoint in the nationwide conflict between urban elites and rural communities. Determined to impose “Plan Maryland,” a sweeping land-use mandate that would hamstring rural development, Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) is facing a growing tax revolt and threats by local businesses to abandon the state.“From Annapolis, he’s dictating how communities across the state should develop, and it’s wrong. It’s arrogant,” Thomas Browning, a farmer from Frederick County, told the Washington Post (Oct. 31). “He’s at war with rural Maryland,” added State Senator and Minority Whip E. J. Pipkin. Plan Maryland is the O’Malley administration’s own version of [...]
Hydraulic fracturing sends “huge volumes of toxic fluids” deep underground at high pressure, to fracture shale rock and release natural gas, Food & Water Watch claims. “Billions of gallons of toxic fluids” will “contaminate” groundwater and drinking water “for generations.” We need to “Ban Fracking Now.”Environmentalists used to support “clean natural gas.” Whence the intolerant new attitude? Oil companies have been using hydraulic fracturing for 60 years to get the most petroleum possible from grudging rock formations deep beneath the Earth. A few years ago, Mitchell Energy and others combined HF with horizontal drilling to tap into hydrocarbon-rich shale deposits that [...]
A frequent refrain during budget and debt ceiling debates is that we need revenue enhancement: higher tax rates, reduced deductions, eliminated credits. But doing this, especially amid today’s massively expanding regulations, will kill more jobs and further reduce government revenues.There is a better way. Huge revenue sources are literally under our noses, or more precisely our feet.America is blessed with vast oil, gas, coal, uranium, rare earth and other natural resource riches – to compliment our ultimate resource: the creative, competitive, innovative spirit of our people.Finding and developing these resources would generate millions of jobs and billions, even trillions, in new [...]