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It’s back. Voting is over, and the climate zombie awakens

Good news for climate bloggers (why aren’t I “excited”?)

The topic no one was going to mention in the election campaign, just got a mention. And in less than 24 hours, it’s already being revived from oblivion. Banking group HSBC tells us that:

Barack Obama  may consider introducing a tax on carbon emissions to help cut the U.S. budget deficit after winning a second term as president, according to HSBC Holdings Plc.

A tax starting at $20 a metric ton of carbon dioxide equivalent and rising at about 6 percent a year could raise $154 billion by 2021, Nick Robins, an analyst at the bank in London, said today in an e-mailed research note, citing Congressional Research Service estimates. “Applied to the Congressional Budget Office’s 2012 baseline, this would halve the fiscal deficit by 2022,” Robins said.

There is no guaranteed path of course, the Republicans control the House. But how telling that the Zombie Ghost of Cap N Trade popped up its head so fast once the votes were in.

Climate Depot responds:

‘Congratulations to President Obama. Now that Obama will never have to face voters again, he may attempt to make global warming a key part of his legacy. Watch for the heavy hand of the EPA, which is poised to implement the climate regulations that Congress refused to pass. Obama’s vision of an EPA bureaucracy shutting down carbon based energy in the name of controlling the climate, will be massively opposed and exposed’

Reuters tells us Harsher energy regulations coming in Obama’s second term

With a pledge to cut oil imports by half by 2020, Obama advocated during the campaign for what he called an “all of the above” approach to developing a range of domestic energy sources. He said, however, that he would roll back subsidies for oil companies and reduce the nation’s reliance on oil by mandating production of more fuel-efficient vehicles.

Obama apparently decided to be silent on climate change on 26 March 2009. Suzanne Goldenberg writes:

Those gathered on 26 March 2009 to hear from key members of Obama’s green dream team — Carol Browner, then energy and climate adviser, Nancy Sutley, chair of the Council on Environmental Quality, and Van Jones, then green jobs adviser, believed it would be a pivotal year. The White House and both houses of Congress were controlled by Democrats, world leaders were due to gather in Copenhagen in December to finalise a global climate change treaty. But the economy was in meltdown. The White House, after studying polling and focus groups, concluded it was best to frame climate change as an economic opportunity, a chance for job creation and economic growth, rather than an urgent environmental problem. “My most vivid memory of that meeting is this idea that you can’t talk about climate change,” said Jessy Tolkan…

Campaign groups agree Obama continued to push the climate agenda, even if he did so below the radar, through the Environmental Protection Agency regulations and other branches of the government.

The economic recovery plan included some $90bn for green-ish measures, such as high speed rail and public transport, and weather-proofing low-income homes.

“There was a really big emphasis on talking about what I call the sub-narratives – that there were other ways to speak about the opportunity and the challenge of climate change rather than calling it that,” said Maggie Fox, the chief executive of Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project. “There was a whole suite of sub-narratives: national security, clean energy future, diversification of energy, health, future generations … “

Time to pack the zombie away.

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