Saturday, April 20, 2013

The Realm of Asinine - Keystone Pipeline Hysteria

The hysteria surrounding approval of the Keystone Pipeline has crossed the border of Ridiculous and entered the realm of Asinine. Thanks to the Recession and natural gas from fracking, the United States is the only developed nation that has met its CO2 reduction goal. North America produces 6.5 gigatons of CO2 emissions annually, and opening the Keystone Pipeline would only increase global CO2 emissions 0.01%. Even after the Keystone Pipeline opens, total US emissions will still be falling, while China will increase its CO2 emissions over 230 times the Keystone Pipeline total each year. As FDR could have said about this issue: “Have you ever heard an ant break wind in a hurricane?”

Numbers must be compared to other numbers to put matters in context. For example, since 1751 (roughly the end of the Little Ice Age), atmospheric CO2 has increased five times faster than human production of CO2 emissions. Science clearly explains that this would be expected as ocean temperatures rebounded from 500 years of Little Ice Age cooling. As a high school chemistry class refresher, cooling water absorbs CO2, and warming water releases it, and that explains why atmospheric CO2 has increased far more than human emissions could cause.

Thanks to China, human CO2 emissions are at record levels, yet (miraculously?) there has been a slight global cooling trend for the past fifteen years, the opposite of what the 44 most sophisticated climate models predicted.

When the Keystone Pipeline is approved, over 100,000 direct and spin-off jobs will be created and the US will be less dependent on unstable overseas oil. Even if the pipeline isn’t built, Canada will produce the oil and deliver it via Canadian pipelines to tankers on its west coast to transport it to China – and probably California, too, until we get fracking.

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