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    Energy Tag

    The last time we checked in with the head of the California State Senate, Kevin de León, he was explaining that half his family would be subject to President Trump's policy on the actual enforcement of immigration rules. He is now proposing outlandish, energy-based legislation. Despite the limitations set by both technology and reality, he has submitted a bill that demands California be powered by 100% renewable energy by 2045.

    Former Texas Governor Rick Perry, President-elect Donald Trump's pick to lead the Energy Department, will face the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources at 10AM EST. During the 2012 primary, Perry said he would abolish the Department of Energy if he became president. He also famously forgot the name of the department during one of the debates in November 2011. But that didn' bother Trump:
    "As the Governor of Texas, Rick Perry created created a business climate that produced millions of new jobs and lower energy prices in his state, and he will bring that same approach to our entire country as Secretary of Energy," Trump said in a statement. "My administration is going to make sure we take advantage of our huge natural resource deposits to make America energy independent and create vast new wealth for our nation, and Rick Perry is going to do an amazing job as the leader of that process."

    Mega gazillionaire, tech innovator, and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates sat down for lengthy interview with CNBC Tuesday. The majority of the interview focused on Gates' latest clean energy initiatives -- all privately funded through his private investment fund, stocked with fellow gazillionaire innovators. "I think this administration likes a good deal," said Gates, who explained he and others would feel comfortable approaching the new administration on a variety of issues like energy policy and general regulatory issues.

    The Dakota Access Pipeline is a nearly 1,200-mile-long underground oil pipeline project that begins in the Bakken oil fields of North Dakota and ends at the oil tank farm near Patoka, Illinois. The pipeline is being built to allow crude oil to reach refining markets in a more direct, cost-effective, safer and environmentally responsible manner by reducing the current use of rail and truck transportation. The pipeline was due for delivery on January 1, 2017. However, a series of violent demonstrations have taken place, spearheaded by climate alarmists and social justice warriors, that have delayed its completion.

    No, it's not April 1. Israel and the Turkish government, led by anti-Semitic President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, have agreed to normalize relations after "six years of animosity" due to the 2010 Mavi Marmara ship. Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım will formally announce the deal on Monday at 1PM local time (6AM ET). Of course, this does not mean Erdoğan has changed his ways or views on Israel. It's all about money.

    The Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System, the world's largest solar plant, has had its share of troubles, including reports that it was scorching birds that flew over it, that it wasn't producing the energy it was projected to produce, and that it was in dire financial difficulty.  This week may well top all of that . . . the solar plant set itself on fire. The LA Times reports:
    A generating tower at the world's largest solar energy plant was shut down Thursday after a mirror misalignment caused sunlight to burn through electrical wiring and start a small fire, according to officials. The blaze at the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System in the Mojave Desert broke out around 9:30 a.m., according to the San Bernardino County Fire Department. In a Facebook post, officials said that flames could be seen near the ninth floor of the Unit 3 tower, but that they had apparently died out by the time firefighters arrived.

    Israel has debuted a sea version of their successful Iron Dome to provide more protection from Hamas and Hezbollah. https://twitter.com/LTCPeterLerner/status/732941770280013825 The sea Iron Dome will also protect the natural gas fields off the coast of Israel. The discoveries led to a $15 billion deal to supply Jordan with natural gas.

    The Wall Street Journal reported that the Clinton Global Initiative provided $2 million to a for-profit company partially owned by close friends of the family. Scott Kleeb, who "twice ran for Congress" as a Democrat, founded Energy Pioneer Solutions in 2009. A document showed other friends of the Clintons also own the company:
    An internal document from that year showed it as owned 29% by Mr. Kleeb; 29% by Jane Eckert, the owner of an art gallery in Pine Plains, N.Y.; and 29% by Julie Tauber McMahon of Chappaqua, N.Y., a close friend of Mr. Clinton, who also lives in Chappaqua. Owning 5% each were Democratic National Committee treasurer Andrew Tobias and Mark Weiner, a supplier to political campaigns and former Rhode Island Democratic chairman, both longtime friends of the Clintons.
    Tobias spoke with the Journal through email:
    “With my modest initial investment, I wound up owning a small percentage of the company. It grew, because ultimately, between loans and equity investments, I’ve wound up putting a little more than $1 million into this effort.”
    President Bill Clinton insisted the donation take place at a September 2010 conference.

    In 2008, the only war that presidential candidate Obama embraced was the one on the American coal industry.
    So, if somebody wants to build a coal plant, they can — it’s just that it will bankrupt them, because they are going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that’s being emitted.
    It appears this is the sole successful Obama campaign, too. And Obama's victory has been even more spectacular than he could have anticipated. Instead of killing of new coal companies, the "green house gas" regulations and the move to natural gas has led the Chapter 11 filings by major and well-established American coal producers.

    When his second term comes to its inevitable conclusion, the final list of President Obama's policy failures will be ponderous. And few items on this list will place higher than his "Green Energy Initiatives." One of his gandest schemes involved backing Solyndra LLC, a solar-panel maker. Presidential aides pressured White House budget officials to complete a review of a $535 million U.S. loan guarantee to the firm, which subsequently filed for bankruptcy protection. Now comes news of a failure 5-times larger. Late last year, another Obama-based green energy company was poised for bankruptcy:

    Hillary Clinton is apparently planning to continue President Obama's war on coal if elected. She said as much at a CNN town hall event on Sunday night. The Daily Wire reports:
    Hillary Pledges To Put Coal Miners Out Of Business Promising to kill the coal industry and its jobs via regulation and taxation if elected President, Hillary Clinton called for economic revitalization via the creation of an industry for “clean renewable energy" as a substitute. Speaking at the CNN-hosted Democratic town hall event in Columbus, Ohio, Clinton sanctioned the narrative of anthropogenic global warming in calling for the cessation of consumption of fossil fuels.

    Yet another Obama administration initiative was halted by the U.S. Supreme Court this week. The Clean Power Plan (CPP) was a far-reaching effort by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to control greenhouse gas emissions from coal-fired power plants under the Clean Air Act (CAA). If implemented, the CPP would have closed hundreds of coal-fired plants across the country and increased the production of wind and solar power, which are significantly more expensive to produce. The CPP was challenged in  court by energy companies, industry groups, and a coalition of 29 states, led by West Virginia. The litigants filed multiple applications for a stay, which would block the CPP from being implemented while the case proceeded.

    Hitting the "pause" button

    A three-judge panel on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously voted to deny the stay last month, and it was appealed to the Supreme Court, which, in a 5-4 ruling with the liberal Justices (Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan) voting against, agreed to grant the stay. A stay is best understood as hitting the "pause" button, and not the final step in the litigation, but it does prevent the CPP from being implemented while the case proceeds.

    This week California's State Treasurer Johnny Chiang announced that the Golden State's finances are completely tarnished:
    State Treasurer John Chiang unveiled a new open data website today, providing important details about $1.5 trillion in debt issued by state and local government entities as part of his ongoing efforts to promote transparency in government. The site, debtwatch.treasurer.ca.gov, makes it easier for taxpayers to track proposed and issued debt, cost of issuance, and bond and tax election results. “The state and its local governments have borrowed more than $1.5 trillion from Wall Street over the past three decades to build roads, schools, and other critical public works,” said Chiang. “Bonds are not free money and, indeed, obligate the public to repay them through higher taxes and fees. DebtWatch aspires to empower Californians to hold government accountable for its borrowing decisions.”
    Meanwhile, our state's Chief Executive seems to have added to that debt, after requesting a state deparment complete a gas and oil survey of his property at taxpayer expense.
    Gov. Jerry Brown last year directed state oil and gas regulators to research, map and report back on any mining and oil drilling history and "potential for future oil and gas activity" at the Brown family's private land in Northern California, state records show.

    A new report suggests the United States power grid is vulnerable to an EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse) attack and that should scare the hell out of you. When it comes to the cost of American lives, an attack like this would make 9/11 look small. If a large portion of the United States was deprived of electricity for a significant amount of time, millions would die of starvation, a lack of access to modern medical care and the collapse of law and order. Daniel Wiser reports at the Washington Free Beacon:
    Report: United States Increasingly Vulnerable to Potentially Catastrophic EMP Attack The threat of a devastating electromagnetic pulse attack on the United States is increasing just as American infrastructure has become more vulnerable, according to a new report.

    Back in 2008, Obama suggested that it would be necessary to bankrupt the coal industry in his efforts to establish "green" energy alternatives—he wanted to "take coal off the table as an ideological matter." Here's the clip: The Daily Caller has a partial transcript of the above interview:
    In 2008, Obama said his energy policies would “bankrupt” anyone who wants to build a coal plant. “So if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can; it’s just that it will bankrupt them, because they’re going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that’s being emitted,” Obama said during a 2008 interview with the San Francisco Chronicle’s editorial board.
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