California’s crazy cap &trade scheme

The California Air Resources Board has imposed a limit on carbon dioxide emissions on California businesses.  The limits will be lowered each year until 2020.  Industries can obtain carbon credits, initially free but which later must be purchased, in order to emit more carbon dioxide than the regulations decree.  See more of the story from the San Francisco Chronicle here.

These regulations will increase the cost of energy, hence the cost of doing business.  These costs will be passed on to consumers.

The carbon credits can be bought at auction and traded.  Experience in Europe and in other markets  in the U.S. shows that these schemes are ripe for fraud.  Back in 2010 it was found that 90% of the carbon trading volume in Belgium was due to fraudulent activities.

The U.S. used to have a climate exchange but that collapsed, see Carbon Credit Trading Collapses in US.  In 2010, The Chicago Climate Exchange saw prices of carbon credits go from $7.50 per ton to a nickel per ton before it ceased operations.  The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, a consortium of ten Northeastern states, also collapsed last year.

Carbon trading is a wholly artificial market created by government edict rather than any real need for the product. Unlike traditional commodities, which sometime during the course of their market exchange must be delivered to someone in physical form, the carbon market is based on the lack of delivery of an invisible substance to no one.   And it may have contributed to the current financial crisis.  Major financial institutions such as Goldman Sachs, Barclays, and Citibank hosted carbon-trading desks.

The alleged rationale behind this scheme is that it will forestall global warming.  But observational evidence shows that carbon dioxide has no significant effect on global temperature.  Take a look at the graph below from a 1988 prediction made by climate guru James Hansen (h/t to Steve Goddard):


For more on Hansen and his predictions see: “Climastrologist” James Hansen versus reality

I predict  businesses that can, will leave California.  That will help reduce emissions.  This will be an interesting experiment; one whose negative impacts will perhaps show the foolishness of imposing a national cap & trade scheme.

See also:

A Perspective on Climate Change a tutorial


  1. Liberals blindly following their ideology without considering the effect on real human lives.

    The irony is how often they attempt to put on the mantle of compassion, as they gently and with great superiority, twist the knife. 

    1. Bobeast–You conflate “caring for real human lives” with immediate financial benefit. Some of us “liberals” care about the whole planet for the long haul. You are thinking small and short term. That will screw up the lives of far more people and far more dramatically. Dr. John Parsons

  2. The willful suicide that my adopted state of California is doing is sickening.  The government class, especially at the state level, is so detached from reality that this state no longer has a chance.  In a year and a half, my son graduates high school, and I and departing this state with my > $100,000 a year salary. But not to worry.  There will be 3 illegal aliens right behind me working off the books and consuming more services.

    1. I’m sure California will greatly miss you. Where ‘ya goin’ — Alabama? Mississippi? Doc

  3. I completely agree that the California scheme, in and of itself, will do nothing to forestall whatever global warming is to come, but the statement that carbon dioxide has no significant effect on global temperature, is simply wrong. Its role may be overstated, but it does exist in sufficient magnitude to be “significant”—not that such a fact alone should mandates any type of action.

    1. And on what do you base such a declaration (i.e. “the statement that carbon dioxide has no significant effect on global temperature, is simply wrong”), sir? 
      The scientific testing model is simple-testing hypotheses via hard data, thus confirming or refuting said theories depending on the results achieved.  When the data do not confirm the theory, there is obviously a flaw and it needs to be altered or discarded.  Every piece of data thus far has refuted the declaration that carbon dioxide levels drive climate change, from the graph above (and many more like it) to ice core samples taken in Greenland and at both poles.  
      CERN experiments, in fact, have demonstrated that cosmic rays are the most significant driver of weather on the planet, stating, “…cosmic rays spur the formation of clouds through on-induced nucleation.  Current thinking posits that half of the Earth’s clouds are formed through nucleation….this has significant implications for climate science because water vapor and clouds play a large role in determining global temperatures.  Tiny changes in overall cloud cover can result in relatively large temperature changes.”  Read for yourself: 
      As long as we continue to allow politics, money and emotion to sway scientific conclusions, the world will continue to flounder in ignorance and ignore facts.

      1. I can not believe we are still going round in circle over this. I will put in plain English as I feel there is no need to make this a complicated matter. If you took every piece of organic matter on the planet today and burn it you would not realise as much CO2e into the atmosphere as we have done by burn Carboniferous fossil fuels that we have dug up. If you think about it this is additional carbon that is going into the carbon cycle then undoubtly this will then off balance this cycle; as you can imagine this carbon cycle effects everything from weather to the acidy of the ocean. The consequence of this change in the cycle is only being documented recently i.e with the increase of global warming, which incidentally should be gauged on the sea level rise rather than temperature due to temperature being fluctuating and the melt of ice being a more constant indicator, or extreme weather events. However, the evidence is piling up that if you would like to the earth to stay the way it is now we will have to keep the biogeochemical balance as it is, there is no doubt that we are changing this and therefore there will be consequences of this. I have studied three degrees in the subject from leading universities and now working at a one of the biggest organisation in the world advising them on environmental risk; say that you do not have to believe me read James Lovelock’s ‘A final warning the vanishing face of Gaia’ or ‘Sustainable energy without the hot air’. These books I believe can explain this complicated subject with reason.
        Whether I agree or disagree with carbon trading is a whole different matter however whether global climate change is occurring is matters long agree upon by almost every climate scientist on this planet.

      2. Thanks Seriously, I know it’s difficult to have to continually replow the same field over and over, but these ignorant people have to be addressed. Thanks for the thoughtful exposition. Dr. John

      3. The Baron exhorts you to learn about the CERN study by going to a wack-job conspiracy theory website. I suggest that you read the abstract of the CERN study itself. You will come away with a completely different view. Go to the source instead of being led around by ideologues. Dr. John Parsons

  4. Global Warming and Carbon Credits are just a scam to tax white people and pass off their wealth and businesses to those who hate us. 

Comments are closed.