The Russian president believes that “there is no global warming, that this is a fraud to restrain the industrial development of several countries including Russia,” says Stanislav Belkovsky, a political analyst and critic of Putin. “That is why this subject is not topical for the majority of the Russian mass media and society in general.” —Reuters, 29 October 2015
Putin’s climate scepticism dates from the early 2000s, when his staff “did very, very extensive work trying to understand all sides of the climate debate”, said Andrey Illarionov, Putin’s senior economic adviser at the time and now a senior fellow at the Cato Institute in Washington. “We found that, while climate change does exist, it is cyclical, and the anthropogenic role is very limited,” he said. “It became clear that the climate is a complicated system and that, so far, the evidence presented for the need to ‘fight’ global warming was rather unfounded.” That opinion endures. During a trip to the Arctic in 2010, Putin acknowledged that “the climate is changing”, but restated his doubt that human activity was the cause. —Reuters, 29 October 2015
Obama administration lawyers want a federal court to hold off on deciding whether to block its climate change rule for power plants until late December. Since the regulation from the Environmental Protection Agency is the United States’s most significant climate change initiative, opponents think staying the rule would send a strong signal and could derail an international pact to fight climate change. While the Justice Department and the EPA characterized the schedule as reasonable, Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) said the administration was trying to delay proceedings. “The Clean Power Plan is on legally vulnerable ground, and the agency knows it,” Inhofe, chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, said in a statement. –Timothy Cama, The Hill, 28 October 2015
Steel bosses warned David Cameron five years ago that energy taxes would risk thousands of jobs on Teesside, but ministers ignored the pleas as they were determined to lead ‘the greenest government in history’. Prior to taking control of the former British steel plant on Teesside in 2011, SSI repeatedly sought assurances from ministers that it would not be hit with punitive taxes for carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. George Osborne, however, imposed duty which hiked energy costs for steel manufacturers and other energy-intensive industries that meant that British steelmakers ended up paying 80 per cent more for electricity than the EU average, which is two times higher than the US, and three times more than in China. Despite repeated warnings that the levy would make it almost impossible for British steel firms to compete with overseas rivals the Government has only now stepped to save the industry from collapse. –Andy Richardson, The Northern Echo, 30 October 2015
Green energy investments have been shredded over the past eight years, gutting shareholder value and calling the financial viability of renewable energy into question. The Energy Select Sector SPDR exchange-traded fund, which tracks the alternative energy sector, is down 15 percent over the past eight years. Barron’s reports that losses among individual ETFs in the green energy sector, however, are much worse. Guggenheim Solar ETF has lost investors 88 percent over the same timeframe, with PowerShares WilderHill Clean Energy Portfolio losing a similar 82 percent. Global government cuts in green energy subsidies will continue to threaten alternative energy investments going forward. –Steve Birr, Daily Caller News Foundation, 28 October 2015
The global warming hiatus is one of the most important topics in climate science. The data shows us something very interesting is happening and many scientists, looking at many aspects of the environment, are producing amazing research in pursuit of an explanation. It will not be explained or dismissed by this or that paper, and the latest one championed in the media is unlikely to last long. The hiatus is not only telling us something about the importance of natural climatic variations but also about the polarisation of science exemplified by questions like whose side are you on. –David Whitehouse, Global Warming Policy Forum, 29 October 2015
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