For more than a year, leaders in Washington have been circling the drain trying to find a compromise on immigration legislation. It has reached far beyond just a policy concern as there have been multiple solutions tossed around from lawmakers as well as 2020 presidential candidates. In late August, the White House announced a new plan that will replace a decades-old court order that determines new regulations on detainment.
There are several problems here. First, even if we agreed that government (as opposed to private) payments for tree-planting made sense, it doesn’t at all follow that the revenue should come from a carbon tax. In general, raising a dollar of revenue from a tax on carbon content hurts the economy more than raising a dollar from taxing labor or consumption. (My article on the “tax interaction effect” gives the economic intuition behind this point.)
Last year, Nevada voters, by a 59 percent majority, endorsed Question 6, the Renewable Energy Promotion Initiative. If adopted again in 2020, it would amend the state constitution to require that 50 percent of the state’s energy portfolio come from renewables —wind and solar — by 2030. The consequences of this could be tragic for Nevada.
California was once a thriving two party state. We replaced it with the current one party state, one party rule. Scholar and Central Valley resident Victor Davis Hanson calls California “America’s First Third-World State.”
The United States has achieved energy independence for the first time in decades, which allows us to ability to step back and shape our future national energy policy. Nuclear energy is one form of energy that has significant advantages, including zero-emissions and grid stability. Renewable energy is also low-carbon, but has drawbacks that nuclear power can compensate for. Because every energy source brings its advantage and challenges, it is essential to move forward with a mix of energy sources.
This week, Donald Trump repeated an American mantra: “Iran will never have a nuclear weapon.” But in due time it will, because it can, and because it has long seen the Bomb to be in its national interest. But is there an upside?
Earlier this millennium, a series of power brownouts and blackouts in California led to the recall of a sitting governor and a special election for his replacement: Arnold Schwarzenegger. Argentina’s leadership is running for reelection this October, and if it can’t keep the lights on, it may not be welcomed back to power.
Anna Caballero, a Democratic state senator from a district near me in California, had a proposal that I actually agreed with. She wanted the term “renewable energy” in California law to refer to–hold on to your hat–renewable energy.
A variety of promising technologies that might be considered “carbon backstops” are now emerging. Such technologies would be impactful in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, scalable, and available for rapid deployment—but too expensive to justify broad deployment today.