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Practically Speaking

Kyle and her husband moved to Brookfield in 1986. She became active in local politics and started blogging in 2004. Her focus is primarily on local issues but often includes state and national topics, too. Kyle looks at things from the taxpayers' perspective in a creative, yet down to earth way, addressing them from a practical point of view.

America's Climate Security Act "Catastrophic For Wisconsin"

Environment, Going Green, Government / Bureaucracy, Legislation, TAXES, THE ECONOMY, Unintended consequences, WISCONSIN

Congressman Sensenbrenner brought up Senate bill S. 2191, the Lieberman/Warner "America's Climate Security Act of 2007" at his Town Hall meeting Sunday. He described it as a "disaster for Wisconsin."

Information on S. 2191 from Congressman Sensenbrenner's website:

“S. 2191 proposes a nationwide cap-and-trade program for the emissions of greenhouse gases, like carbon dioxide, an important component of the manufacturing industry.  By setting a limit and capping carbon dioxide emissions by businesses, the Lieberman/Warner bill would thrust a highly regulatory regime on our nation’s economy, making electricity more expensive for businesses and consumers.  In Wisconsin, which relies heavily on the use of coal for electricity, this bill would have a catastrophic effect as we would be especially hard hit.

“This point is underscored in a study commissioned by the National Association of Manufacturers to assess the potential impacts of S. 2191 on Wisconsin’s economy…and the results are scary.

The Congressman discussed that study at the meeting and on Charlie Sykes show. The predictions were "scary."

“According to the study, electricity rates in Wisconsin could increase by as much as 163% in 2030 - nearly tripling today’s costs - and gas prices could increase by as much as 176% in 2030, again, almost tripling today’s cost of natural gas.

Not only will we be paying more for utilities, a figure of a 145% increase in gasoline prices was also given on Charlie Sykes show Monday, April 28, Ready for $10 a gallon gas?

Of course, these additional costs to businesses will be passed onto consumers. The Director of the Congressional Budget Office testified, "Under a cap-and-trade program, firms would not ultimately bear most of the costs of the allowances but instead would pass them along to their customers in the form of higher prices.

So not only do we get to pay for higher energy costs for our own use, but we will pay more for every item and service produced in Wisconsin too.  

Who would ever want to live in Wisconsin or locate their business here if that is the case?

The National Association of Manufacturers report estimated that by 2030, 74,000 jobs would leave Wisconsin and a whopping 4 million jobs would leave our nation, because businesses naturally seek the cheapest and easiest place to manufacture their products.

What exactly is a cap-and-trade and why does it have such a negative impact on Wisconsin? 

Cap-and-trade is another term for Carbon Credit (or indulgences). Congress or bureaucrats set a cap or maximum on greenhouse gases that can be emitted by a company--be it a corporation or a utility company. Companies that do not comply with the standard must then have to purchase carbon offsets from companies that do comply. It is like a type of stock market that deals in these special credits.

According to Congressman Sensenbrenner, since Wisconsin gets 2/3 of its electrical power from coal fired plants, but Illinois obtains 60% of its electric power from clean nuclear power plants that emit 0 CO2, we will have to purchase these carbon offsets from Illinois just to keep producing our needed electricity! Illinois in effect gets their energy costs subsidized by Wisconsin residents. Wisconsin ends up paying 176% more for our electricity. OUCH! (At present, only 20% of Wisconsin electric comes from nuclear plants.)

Think no one in their right mind would agree to a system like this? Think again. Europe has been doing this for nearly 3 years now. Europe's greenhouse gases continue to rise as do their electricity rates. It has done nothing to lower emissions according to a publication from Sensenbrenner's office. I believe Australia just signed on to a system of carbon credits too.

Since businesses will just relocate to third world countries to manufacture their goods, these carbon credits will do nothing to lower CO2 emissions worldwide. The pollution will just move to the far east.

The increase in costs due to cap-and-trade fees are estimated at $1,300 a year / household for Wisconsinites.

Please contact Senators Kohl (Phone: (414) 297-4451, (202) 224-5653) and Feingold (Office of Senator Russ Feingold | 202/224-5323) and let them know what you think about this bill. 

Representative Zipperer informed the Town Hall meeting atendees that the Wisconsin Assembly recently passed legislation that lifted the moratorium on nuclear power plants last session. The Senate however did not. He said they would try again next time. 

Contact your state representative and senator about the moratorium.

State Representative Leah Vukmir, Republican, 14th District
Rep.Vukmir@legis.wisconsin.gov  608-266-9180

Representative Rich Zipperer, Republican, 98th District
Rep.Zipperer@legis.wisconsin.gov  608-266-5120

State Senator Jim Sullivan, Democrat, 5th District
Sen.Sullivan@legis.wisconsin.gov  608-266-2512,  866-817-6061

State Senator Theodore Kanavas, Republican, 33rd District

Sen.Kanavas@legis.wisconsin.gov  608-266-9174, 800-863-8883

Congressman Sensenbrenner's contact info:Email  Telephone: (262) 784-1111, (202) 225-5101  

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