The Bright Side of the Manchin/Schumer Climate Deal

Guest “Always Look on the Bright Side of Life” by David Middleton

While there is a lot to dislike about the Deficit Reduction Act of 2022, it’s infinitely better than its predecessor, Build Back Better and Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) appears to have extracted major concessions on energy, particularly regarding fossil fuels.

Manchin Levels Energy Playing Field. Sort Of.
New proposal by Sen. Joe Manchin slashes the renewable energy subsidy by 80%, extends it to nuclear, and makes renewables leases on federal lands dependent upon oil and gas leases

Michael Shellenberger
Jul 28

For the last two weeks, Democrats have hammered Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) as a fossil fuel-funded sell-out for killing proposed climate and energy legislation that he said would have been inflationary. Today, they are lionizing Manchin for rescuing a bill that would be, according to The New York Times, “the most ambitious action ever taken by the United States to try to stop the planet from catastrophically overheating.”

But the legislation also slashes the renewable energy tax credit by 80%, extends it to existing nuclear plants, and prohibits wind and solar development on federal land, or in federal waters, unless oil or gas lease sales have also been issued. As such, the legislation goes a long way toward doing what Manchin has long said he wanted to do, which is to level the playing field between all energy sources.


Michael Shellenberger Substack

The bill appears to force the Biden maladministration to obey the law and hold offshore lease sales. It also explicitly orders the Department of the Interior to honor the results of Lease Sale 257, which had been unlawfully voided by a corrupt Obama judge.

4 (1) ACCEPTANCE OF BIDS.—Not later 30 days
5 after the date of enactment of this Act, the Sec6 retary shall, without modification or delay—
7 (A) accept the highest valid bid for each
8 tract or bidding unit of Lease Sale 257 for
9 which a valid bid was received on November 17,
10 2021; and
11 (B) provide the appropriate lease form to
12 the winning bidder to execute and return.

Deficit Reduction Act of 2022, page 643

The bill goes on to order the Department of the Interior to quickly issue the leases and abide by the “terms and conditions of the final notice of sale entitled ‘Gulf of Mexico Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Lease Sale 257′.”

It also specifically orders the Secretary of the Interior to hold, and honor the results of, at least one offshore lease sale in 2022. These provisions have infuriated the Enviromarxists…

A sustainable climate deal




In a radio interview Thursday, Manchin said he focused on including benefits for fossil fuels because most Democrats didn’t appreciate that their climate goals would only work if the United States was energy independent.

“It’s hard to get people to even think that way, because they were so aspirational — ‘Get rid of all fossil, get rid of all coal, get rid of all oil, get rid of all gas, get rid of everything,’” he said. “Yeah, and it would go to hell in a handbasket.”

The language would mandate lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico and off the coast of Alaska, as well as tying together federal leasing for renewables and oil and gas. The Center for Biological Diversity called its decision to “handcuff” renewables and petroleum together a “climate suicide pact,” as E&E’s Scott Waldman writes.



How Manchin-Schumer would change energy, from oil to solar
By David Iaconangelo, Heather Richards, Carlos Anchondo, Peter Behr | 07/29/2022


Oil and gas

Along with many climate-targeted policies, the bill has provisions that would boost oil and gas, sparking frustration from activists but fitting with Manchin’s priorities — and his attempts to mollify GOP lawmakers and avoid party-line opposition.

Perhaps most importantly, the package would force the president to redo an oil auction in the Gulf of Mexico from last year that was vacated by a federal judge. It would also force three additional offshore sales, two in the Gulf and one off the Alaska coast, that were canceled by the White House earlier this year.

The language stops short, however, of dictating specifically what the Biden administration does with its pending five-year offshore leasing plan, which will govern oil and gas leasing beyond this administration.

Erik Milito, president of the National Ocean Industries Association, said the bill was a compromise “grounded in reality” and “a serious path forward that lifts offshore energy of all types, to the betterment of our nation.”

Shell PLC Chief Executive Officer Ben van Beurden said during a conference call with reporters he was pleased to see the bill include future leases for offshore oil exploration.

Van Beurden and others in the industry have argued that the world’s oil producers need to invest more in new oil and gas sources to help bring down the price of fuel. Many experts also have noted the need for climate policymakers to focus on reducing demand for oil and gas rather than production, as cutting the supply of crude can have far-reaching economic consequences.

“In countries like the U.S. that have a very strong domestic supply position themselves, just curtailing domestic supply in the hope that somehow domestic demand will follow suit is not a realistic policy,” van Beurden said. “If you persist with basically curtailing supply, the only thing that will happen is you will import it from somewhere else.”

But with increasing climate risks pressing on society, several groups criticized the bundle of offers to oil and gas.

“This so-called deal forced by Senator Manchin is what we would expect when Congress is so closely divided and friends and beneficiaries of the fossil fuel industry have effective control over ‘climate’ policy,” said Food & Water Action Executive Director Wenonah Hauter in a statement. “We should not accept deals that strengthen the oil and gas industry to the detriment of us all.”


E&E News Energy Wire

Looks like I better get ready to work a lease sale this year after all!

Of course, there’s always a chance that the Democrats’ loony left-wing will accede to the demands of the Enviromarxts and prevent it from passing the House.

When asked if he would support a Biden reelection bid, Sen. Manchin had an interesting answer…

When asked if he believes Biden has earned a second term, Manchin initially demurred on each citizen’s need to consult their own conscience. When pushed to weigh in with his own thoughts, Manchin said, “If Joe Biden runs again — if he’s the Democrat nominee — depending on who the Republican nominee is, we’ll just have to wait and see.”

Yahoo! Life

via Watts Up With That?

July 29, 2022 at 08:12PM

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