Friday, May 14, 2010

ND Chamber of Commerce does some recycling

The North Dakota Chamber of Commerce does little to hide their ignorance involving and opposition to efforts to limit greenhouse gas emissions to maintain a livable climate. On the front of their webpage they have a link to a page with a lot of frankly wrong and seemingly made-up information.

Today Chamber President Dave MacIver had a letter in the Grand Forks Herald throwing the usual maybe-something-will-stick arguments against dealing with carbon emissions. Despite apparent disregard for the future state of the biosphere, the Chamber at least does some recycling, though unfortunately it is only recycling of the assertions we should do nothing about carbon emissions.

The letter explicitly calls for Senators Dorgan and Conrad to vote for a resolution from Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski aiming to strip the EPA of the Supreme Court-ordered authority to regulate greenhouse gases emissions since they have been determined to be detrimental to the national health and welfare. The rationale is basically that such regulations will crush the economy.

Why does the North Dakota Chamber of Commerce think so little of America and American business? Why does the North Dakota Chamber of Commerce believe that the economy can only be strong if we cut corners and seriously degrade the environment?

It is only a letter, but the reasoning provided is simply that business and agriculture require cheap, dirty energy and that regulations destroy jobs. To MacIver apparently shortcuts are required in energy production, which sounds great if it cuts costs, until it leads to disaster and/or death. Oh yeah, and you need to ignore all the later external costs of that "cheap" energy, just like borrowed money can seem really cheap since the full cost of the borrowing comes later.

MacIver says, "North Dakotans want climate change policies to be created not by unelected bureaucrats but by elected officials sent to Washington, D.C., by voters." Considering the Chamber's noted opposition to climate change policy that is disingenuous to say the least, acting as though the only problem is with the EPA taking action as opposed to Congress. Much more likely MacIver really wants climate change policy totally controlled by elected officials that can be lobbied by the likes of the Chamber of Commerce. That way it is easier to fight off the necessary climate protecting steps, but if there is some action it can be more easily watered down and filled with demanded goodies.

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