Whether it’s Spring, it’s sweater weather

So here in NYC today we are celebrating Jan. 108, 2018.

The weather here is anything but Spring. I believe we will probably have a frost on the lawn to celebrate Earth Day this weekend. Continue reading


Climate on Wall St. over Trump nixing Paris Agreement

The US participation in the Paris Agreement, which is the United Nations-backed pact on reducing greenhouse gas emissions to combat global warming, was nixed last week, by the Trump Administration as it is written now.

First, let me say I do not agree that climate change is “settled science” since I am old enough to remember when climatologists said in the 1970’s that we were headed into an ice age due to human development .

Secondly, climates don’t change in decades, climate takes 10’s of centuries to work through its progressions. The climate science we are looking at now is similar to looking at one photograph of a marathon runner.

You have no context of how long the race is, or how the runner did in the race. It’s one step in a 26-mile race. And yet some scientist look at this photo and not only know who won the race, but also the time it took the runner to finish.

Thirdly, the climate cycles we have experienced over the last 50 years have all been attributed to man-made emissions whether it was drought or flooding, cold temperatures or warm temperatures, strong hurricanes or weaker storms.

It’s my belief that the sun and the reduction of sun spot activity over the last decade has more influence over our atmosphere than anything we are doing on Earth. However you don’t see that mentioned too much in this debate and I’ll get to why in a second.

So that’s my take on climate change and this is why I agree with the White House on not signing on to the pact as written.

One thing the Paris Agreement does do well is create one of the greatest wealth transfer in history. Through what’s called carbon credit trading the pact sets up an exchanged — run by Wall Street banks — to take cash from US firms and so they can by third-world carbon credits to offset the companies emissions.

It’s a tax on productivity, with Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and other firms taking its piece. Why do you think Goldman’s chief Lloyd Blankfein broke onto Twitter for the first time to denounce Trump’s decision?

Not for fear of warming, but because Goldman is working with former Vice President Al Gore and David Blood, who is the former chief of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, to jump-start this trading platform through their firm Generation Investment Management. And if the largest buyer of your credits is not in the market, how do you make money?

Why would Tesla boss Elon Musk quit the White House advisory role? His whole company is created and funded by no emission vehicles. And if there’s no subsidies or future carbon credits for you and I for his cars than why buy them.

You see the Paris accord is not only aimed at US companies, it will get down to you and I and how we “manage our own carbon footprint”, through additional government fees and taxes.

So why is science not looking at the solar cycle as a cause? How can you tax the sun?

While the Paris Agreement is a feel good issue — who wants to destroy the planet — its mechanisms and funding structures are too one-sided against the US. China has very little restrictions on growth and emissions, despite being the No. 1 consumer of coal in the world.

So for the White House to say no we want a better deal than ex-President Obama agreed to is not out of the question. Besides if this is a treaty, Congress would have to approve it, before Trump could sign off on it.

Tip-toeing around carbon footprints

Beginning today and running for two weeks are the international climate change talks outside Paris.

More than 150 countries will be participating in the discussions with the most prominent talks centering on financing of newer technologies for developing countries.

With cost estimates of $100 billion a year by 2020, the large industrial countries will be looking for a financing scheme to move it forward.

This is where carbon credits come in. A fictitious financial instrument where a reduction of a ton of carbon dioxide is traded like a share of stock.

The scheme works like this:

An US manufacturing company shuts down a plant here, which produced 200 tons of CO2 per year and gets a credit for it. It’s an asset. The company can now sell those credits — 200 tons of CO2 — to a company that is producing 600 tons of CO2, thereby reducing company B’s carbon footprint by 200 tons.

And who makes out on the deal? Well environmentalists would say everyone. But when you follow the money, Wall Street firms like Cantor Fitzgerald and others, who broker the credits make out the best, with this carbon copy scheme.

The end result will be another trillion dollars of wealth transfers from the US to third-world countries with banks and brokerages taking a big slice in fees and services. The carbon reductions will pale in comparison to the monetary carnage to industrialized countries citizens.

But in the end the US middle class will be poorer still as better paying jobs move off shore, while politicians  tip-toe around the carbon footprint question.