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President Obama Asks Congress for Carbon Cap Legislation; to Spend $15B per Year on Energy Technologies

In his first address to a joint session of the US Congress on 24 February, President Barack Obama named energy as one of the three areas of investment “that are absolutely critical to our economic future” and called on Congress to “send me legislation that places a market-based cap on carbon pollution and drives the production of more renewable energy in America.” (The two other areas named were health care and education.)

It begins with energy.

We know the country that harnesses the power of clean, renewable energy will lead the 21st century. And yet, it is China that has launched the largest effort in history to make their economy energy efficient. We invented solar technology, but we’ve fallen behind countries like Germany and Japan in producing it. New plug-in hybrids roll off our assembly lines, but they will run on batteries made in Korea.

Well I do not accept a future where the jobs and industries of tomorrow take root beyond our borders—and I know you don’t either. It is time for America to lead again.

Thanks to our recovery plan, we will double this nation’s supply of renewable energy in the next three years. We have also made the largest investment in basic research funding in American history—an investment that will spur not only new discoveries in energy, but breakthroughs in medicine, science, and technology.

We will soon lay down thousands of miles of power lines that can carry new energy to cities and towns across this country. And we will put Americans to work making our homes and buildings more efficient so that we can save billions of dollars on our energy bills.

But to truly transform our economy, protect our security, and save our planet from the ravages of climate change, we need to ultimately make clean, renewable energy the profitable kind of energy. So I ask this Congress to send me legislation that places a market-based cap on carbon pollution and drives the production of more renewable energy in America. And to support that innovation, we will invest fifteen billion dollars a year to develop technologies like wind power and solar power; advanced biofuels, clean coal, and more fuel-efficient cars and trucks built right here in America.

As for our auto industry, everyone recognizes that years of bad decision-making and a global recession have pushed our automakers to the brink. We should not, and will not, protect them from their own bad practices. But we are committed to the goal of a re-tooled, re-imagined auto industry that can compete and win. Millions of jobs depend on it. Scores of communities depend on it. And I believe the nation that invented the automobile cannot walk away from it.


Joe Allen

Readers may be interested to look at the interview we published this Monday with Neil Eckert, CEO of London-based Climate Exchange plc, the primary trading exchange worldwide for cap-and-trade credits and securities such as the market-based carbon caps mentioned by President Obama. Check, and scroll down to the interview with Mr Eckert, posted on Monday, Feb 23. Eckert quantifies the carbon market at potentially $1.6 Trillion annually. We have no business or other relationship with Mr Eckert, by the way, do not own his stock, etc.

Raymond Aurand

In Obama's speech yesterday he said that the United States invented the automobile and it is assumed he also included the internal combustion engine.
But we all kow that it was Carl Benz in Germany that invented both.
Obama is an intelligent man with very little technical or scientific knowledge.
Also, he gets an F in history 101.


Thanks, Raymond. That info affects carbon cap legislation how?

Andrey Levin

Not much, Peter. Just that the person calling for cap&trade (and anyone from his team involved in writing and editing his speech) is illiterate moron.


market based cap on carbon pollution ?

Is this the 'gas tax' ?

Raymond Aurand

I appologize Peter, I should have added a comment that carbon cap and trade is as foolish as believeing that the United States invented the automobile.
Andrey had it right although I wouldn't have been quite that severe.

market based cap on carbon pollution ?

Is this the 'gas tax' ?

This is the "cap and trade", which creates all kinds of openings for shenanigans in what does and does not fall under the cap, and windfall profits for the traders.

If Obama was serious, he'd talk carbon tax.  He's not.

Andrey Levin

Raymond, read attentively the whole speech:

Emergency spending to arrest deflation spiral with immediate promise to cut spendings.

Emergency measures to unlock credit and investment, with immediate promise to crunch bankers, rich, and corporations – exactly ones who could provide such investments.

Massive deficit financed by debt, with derogatory statements against foreign capital which is exactly who will buy newly minted T-bills.

Promises of extremely expensive social reforms in time of severe recession and huge budget deficit.

Demand for extremely expencive and damaging changes in energy industry in time of – yes – severe recession.

The guy does not understand consequences of single catchy phrase he is spewing with such aplomb.


Oh man... Are we in serious trouble. Cap and Trade is the Administration's new money raising scheme?? This is the invention of Algore and Wall Street Commodities brokers who will take huge fees to administer punitive taxes on the dreaded "pollutant" CO2.

Maybe now the greens will begin to see how badly they've been duped by AGW thieves.

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