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Pam Faggert
Vice President and Chief Environmental Officer, Dominion

Pam Faggert

Pam Faggert is vice president and chief environmental officer for Richmond, Va.-based Dominion, one of the nation’s largest energy companies. She previously was director for Air Division of the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality. ALL POSTS

Let's not 'off' offsets just yet

I don't know what position Gertrude Stein might have taken on global warming, but I am certain that she would have grasped the concept of offsets: after all, a ton of CO2 is a ton of CO2 is a ton of CO2.

Granted that is simplistic, but it is the essence of offset programs. On a global scale, reducing a ton of carbon dioxide in Pennsylvania has the same impact as reducing a ton of CO2 in Brazil.

A slow economy and uncertainty as to the final shape and timing of climate legislation is not a signal to abandon the offset concept. The market will develop further when there are incentives - such as a climate bill that includes offsets - for companies to participate.

Of course, developing a robust offset market requires more than saying "go forth and plant trees." To succeed, qualifying offsets must be real, permanent, and verifiable, and meet rigorous environmental standards. Fortunately, the technology and expertise needed to ensure those criteria are met already exists.

Whether we end up with a cap-and-trade system or a carbon-tax system, offsets should be included. In a cap-and-trade plan, energy providers would purchase the reductions. With a carbon tax, the authority collecting the taxes could use them to pay for others to reduce emissions.

In addition to reducing green house gases in the atmosphere, the ancillary benefits of offsets are numerous and positive. For example, preserving rain forest also provides habitat diversity and protects endangered species. Offsets from reducing methane emitted in agriculture also have the added benefit of reducing phosphorous and nitrogen in our waters. Offsets can spur investments in renewables, making them more cost-effective to build.

In sum, offsets are a good idea. Let's give the process time to mature.

By Pam Faggert  |  March 20, 2010; 8:42 AM ET Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
Previous: Economy is too large for offsets | Next: The importance of offsets


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Preserving rain forests, reducing phosphorous and nitrogen in waters, and using less foreign oil are all worthy goals that should be encouraged.

Cap and trade or carbon taxes are based on the theory that human emissions of carbon dioxide gas have caused the warming observed over the last thirty or so years.

The AGW warmists have monkeyed with the temperature record to demonstrate that global temperatures now are a little over one degree Fahrenheit warmer than they were a century ago, and further claim that these temperatures are unprecedented in the history of the world since the last ice age, and maybe even before that.

Of course, the people who lived in Greenland a thousand years ago at temperatures warmer than those in Greenland today might disagree, but they didn't write peer reviewed papers and lacked modern thermometers. They did pay taxes to the King of Norway for the grapes that they grew where grapes won't grow today, but the warmists claim that it was just a local warm spell that lasted only a few hundred years in Greenland and the rest of the world was cold all over. Most adults no longer believe in Santa Claus and the tooth fairy, but a few PHDs with computer models can apparently fool lots of folks.

Same goes with melting ice at the North Pole. Anyone with a history book can read of the dreams of sailors to find a northwest passage. There are logs from sailors showing that ice has melted before, and there are pictures in National Geographic of submarines that surfaced in water near the North Pole, but those same PHDs have convinced millions of people that the history books (and photos) must have been mistaken because their computer models and statistics say so.

The NSIDC graphs show that the North Pole sea ice extent is only slightly below normal right now, and the South Pole has actually been above normal for years. See:

When the ice was shrinking, it was frequently the subject of news articles and heartbreaking photos of drowning polar bears. Now that the north pole ice has recovered from lows and is nearly normal, sea ice will no longer be news because it doesn't support cap and trade or carbon tax agendas.

As more researchers use sequoia tree rings at the University of Arizona, and Norwegian clam shell temperature history analysis replace the phony temperature historical proxies created by Drs. Mann, Jones, and Hansen, the foundations of the warmists will crumble like so much sand, and their peer reviewed papers (mostly reviewed by each other) will be relegated to the dustbins where eugenics, the ether, and the flat earth folks live.

If it wasn't for the fact that the AGW folks have perpetrated and continue to perpetrate a huge money grab that will far exceed the amounts stolen by Bernie Maddox, no one would really care. Follow the grant money, and follow the insiders who will be creating carbon credits by 'reducing the rate of deforestation' to discover why this is happening. Nonsense scientific results based on data and procedures that they will not release to independent researchers are easily explained by anyone who has been around a while; there is a lot of money already made and to be made by the folks who are perpetrating the nonsense.

These same folks regularly accuse anyone who disagrees with them of being in the pay of the oil or coal or other moneyed interests. This has been their single most effective propaganda move and they continue to be astonished at how well it works. Notice that after fifteen years of these accusations, you don't know the name of even one climate skeptic who has ever collected any money. Notice that the folks making the accusations have been collecting millions, and stand to collect billions from cap and trade, and yet they are the ones accusing someone else of being influenced by money. You can fool all of the people some of the time, but eventually you will be caught.

Posted by: AGWsceptic99 | March 21, 2010 1:45 AM
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