Heading Them Off at the Pass

While the addition of Sarah Palin to the GOP ticket will allow me to vote without holding my nose, I will have to dampen Brian Griffiths mood… just a bit.

My friend Paul Chesser at Climate Strategies Watch details Alaska’s contract with CCS the same advocacy group that runs our own Maryland Climate Change Commission.

Gov. Palin signed an administrative order last September that created the Alaska Climate Change Sub-Cabinet. Her order is perhaps not as strident on greenhouse gas emissions as some other governors, but she still buys into the argument that GHGs must be reduced.

Paul’s piece is very instructive on how CCS operates once it infects state bureaucracies and touts is own left wing funding sources as a financial incentive for states to issue them sole source contracts. Also, and most importantly, CCS puts the kibosh on any questioning of the (unproven) consensus of anthropogenic global warming.

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A draft (PDF) of the agreement said, “Although additional research may be needed to help the public and policymakers better understand Alaska’s changing climate and how to anticipate and respond to its effects, the time for climate debate is over; it is now time for climate action.” Also, the document states on page 13 clearly what is off-limits: “Participants will not debate the science of climate change….” Private funders are identified as the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, the Marisla Foundation, the Energy Foundation, and others…

As if total control over the process wasn’t enough for CCS either, though, there’s this: CCS recommended who would be appointed (PDF) to the climate commission. Read the list and note how strongly the representation is that they want from environmentalism and government. Meanwhile private business gets short shrift, as do climate scientists, taxpayer activists, property rights activists, and other protectors of individual rights.

However, the story doesn’t end there. Governor Palin opposed listing the polar bear as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act and questioned the suspect science behind climate models, which predict gloom and doom. On the issue of anthropogenic global warming she stated, “A changing environment will affect Alaska more than any other state, because of our location. I’m not one though who would attribute it to being man-made.”

Furthermore, I have it on good authority that some of the sub-cabinet working groups booted the CCS apparatchiks from their roles as facilitators.

So, what are we to make of all this?

From Paul’s reporting is appears that Palin, out of genuine concern for the Alaskan environment, created the sub cabinet and then delegated the responsibility to the Alaskan Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). Given that one of CCS’ major selling points is their private funding to offset the cost to states, its no surprise that DEC went with CCS.

However, hiring CCS is not tantamount to implementing their policy prescriptions. Given Palin’s conservatism and public pronouncements on the subject of anthropogenic global warming, she would most likely oppose CCS recommendations. Contrast this with Martin O’Malley, who beholden to Maryland’s environmentalists, supported the Global Warming Solutions Act, which CCS praised.

I’m sure there will be more baseless charges of hypocrisy against Brian and myself from the usual suspect. However, we were both going to vote for John McCain before the Palin pick and despite his support for a cap and trade bill.

I think I speak for Brian here when I say we believe that a Vice President Palin would prevail upon President McCain to reconsider his support for any destructive climate change legislation.

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