Monday, April 14, 2008

Report: Bush considers backing global warming plan

It is probably an overstatement to characterize the conservative Washington Times newspaper as the Bush Administration’s Pravda, but the paper often has seemed a lot closer to the President than many other news organs, and even has been suspected of being a launching pad for trial balloons.

IF so, there’s a doozy of a trial balloon in today’s issue – a report that the White House is considering a change in policy – and, as early as this week, may call on Congress to pass a global warming bill.

The paper reports that

Specifics of the policy are still being fiercely debated, but Bush administration officials have told Republicans in Congress that they feel pressure to act now because they fear a coming regulatory nightmare. It would be the first time Mr. Bush has called for statutory authority on the subject. "This is an attempt to move the administration and the party closer to the center on global warming. With these steps, it is hoped that the debate over this is over, and it is time to do something," said an administration source close to the White House who is familiar with the planning and who said to expect an announcement this week.

This flurry comes on the eve of an April 17-18 meeting in Paris with other major economic powers (see below). Climate is expected to be one issue on the table, though up to this point, the meeting looks very much like a junket.

There is a related rumor that the administration is considering a power sector-only plan.

If so, I suspect it would be DOA, since it is about eight years too late. (You may recall that in 2000, candidate George Bush endorsed such an approach, only to reverse course once in the White House’ leaving his first EPA chief, Christie Whitman, with egg on her face.)


From: Hellmer, Kristen A. [] Sent: Friday, April 11, 2008 10:55 AMTo: FN-CEQ-PressSubject: U.S. Announces Delegation To Third Major Economies Meeting on Energy Security and Climate ChangeImportance: High
Council on Environmental Quality
Executive Office of the President

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Kristen Hellmer
April 11, 2008 202-395-0801


U.S. Announces Delegation To Third Major Economies Meeting on Energy Security and Climate Change

As part of President Bush’s continued international energy security and climate change initiative, the world’s major economies plus the United Nations, have been invited to Paris, France for the third Major Economies Meeting. The two-day meeting will further the shared objectives of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, increasing energy security and efficiency, and sustaining economic growth, and will help to advance the negotiations under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Who: Chairman James L. Connaughton, White House Council on Environmental Quality
Daniel M. Price, Assistant to the President for International Economic Affairs
Paula Dobriansky, Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs
Alexander Karsner, Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
C. Boyden Gray, Special Envoy for European Union Affairs
(plus other technical experts)

When: April 17-18, 2008

Where: Kleber Center
Paris, France

Details: Members of the media wishing to cover the event should email A credential form is attached.


Kristen A. Hellmer
Director for Communications
Executive Office of the President
Council on Environmental Quality
202-395-2164 (cell)

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