Changing the climate

National Review
by Jonathan H. Adler

06/12/07

In January the Bush administration promised bold, eye-popping initiatives on energy and the environment in the State of the Union address. But the White House failed to deliver. Bush proposed reducing U.S. gasoline consumption by 20 percent over ten years, largely by increasing subsidies and mandates for alternative fuels and tightening auto fuel-economy standards. Such proposals are hardly path breaking, and certainly failed to justify the pre-speech predictions. More ethanol is not an inspiring energy future. In May, by comparison, there was little effort to hype the president’s announcement of a new climate-policy agenda in preparation for the G-8 summit in Heiligendamm. Everyone knew climate change topped host Angela Merkel’s agenda, and that President Bush and the German prime minister were leagues apart on the issues. The big question was not whether Bush would propose something new, but whether he would acquiesce to European demands. So it was a surprise when, at the tail end of a speech outlining his G-8 agenda, President Bush seized the global initiative on climate-change policy...

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Informant: Thomas L. Knapp



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