By on February 26, 2010

Oregonians hold onto your Astons! Your state senate has passed a bill, SB 1059, that seeks to reduce ground transportation-related GHG emissions 75% relative to 1990, by 2050, in the state’s six major (by Oregon standards) metro areas.

The bill largely sets process in motion, mandating a “toolkit” of useful measures, whatever that is, to be developed by the Department ofTransportation and the Department of Land Conservation and Development, as well as planning guidelines, and leaving details up to the Big Six. The Oregonian foresees the tool kit as containing–among other things–mass transit (Oregon must not be aware that this is one of the least cost-effective ways to reduce GHG emissions), denser development mixing the residential and the commercial, and traffic light timing (hallelujah!).

These goals will be all the harder to achieve if the US population grows as projected. Now 308 million (Census), the US is expected to reach nearly 440 million by 2050 due largely to mass immigration (Pew Research Center, 2008).

Of all the major energy use sectors of the economy, GHG reduction is most difficult in the transportation sector. Nonetheless, if the Beaver State succeeds in encouraging greater density of development, that would probably have lasting benefits, improving air quality, and protecting farmland from development, according to Sen. Alan Bates (D-Ashland), and probably painlessly reducing VMT. But watch out for legislators who want to stuff you into a Pelosimobile or tax your VMT.

The bill was unanimously opposed by Senate Republicans. Now it must be approved by the Oregon House.

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27 Comments on “Oregon Senate Passes Transportation GHG Bill...”


  • avatar
    superbadd75

    GHG? Isn’t that the date rape drug?

  • avatar
    Dukeboy01

    Typical. Even as the legs are being kicked out from under the man- made global warming theories, the tree huggers in the Oregon state legislature soldier on.

    I wonder if by 2050 the global warming/ climate change hysteria of the late 20th/ early 21st century will be considered as ridiculous as the population bomb/ mass starvation hysteria of the 1970′s or the “flat earth” theory that all reputable scientists believed in prior to 1492.

    • 0 avatar
      criminalenterprise

      Your references to scientific history are severely lacking in detail, accuracy and perspective. Don’t let that stop the fun, though.

    • 0 avatar
      fincar1

      There seems to be a lot of government-knows-best thinking in Oregon. It’s one of the few states that has a statewide land-use policy. (But I don’t know whether the rules are the same for Portland and for the deserts of eastern Oregon.) It shares with my home state of Washington a strong generally liberal bent due to the big concentration of population in urban areas – Portland and Seattle respectively. Also like Washington, it shares in the influx of ex-Californians who are fleeing the effects of liberal policies in California, but who, unaware of cause-effect relationships, bring their liberal politics with them. Most of these people haven’t heard that anthropogenic global warming is increasingly discredited or else they have a religious faith in it. In view of these factors I am not in the least surprised that such legislation could pass the Oregon state senate.

    • 0 avatar
      Geotpf

      Global warming is real and caused by man. Almost anybody with any scientific training believes this as much as they believe in gravity.

      But it’s also unfixable in the real world. The practical, political, economic reality is that global warming probably can not be stopped. It also won’t be the end of the world, or even effect the average Westerner much. A few million poor people in Africa or where ever might die, though.

    • 0 avatar
      moedaman

      How about that global warming that melted the glaciers? I guess cavemen campfires caused that.

      The biggest problem I have with the “human actions cause global warming” story is that climate flucuations have happened so often with such severity and quickness in the past without human action. A few hundred years of data is a microsecond in geologic time.

      I fully support keeping the enviroment clean and being energy efficient. That’s just common sense. But don’t feel that there is enough data about human actions causing global warming and I really resent the over-reaching ways some people want to use to stop it.

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      Geotpf: Global warming is real and caused by man. Almost anybody with any scientific training believes this as much as they believe in gravity.

      The “science” used to support this hypothesis has been found to be riddled with errors, critical omissions and outright fraud. The simple fact is that the case for manmade global warming is collapsing, and those who lectured skeptics about the need to bow down to the “scientists” who had allegedly proved it now have egg on their faces.

  • avatar
    Dr Lemming

    All auto gearheads aren’t environmental neanderthals. Nor are they ignorant of global warming science and policy nuances. I wish we could elevate this discussion.

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      Yes, some of us understand the true implications of “Climategate.”

    • 0 avatar
      michaelC

      Yes, I agree.

      It is sad that responsible transmission of the results of science have been hijacked by those with parochial political and economic interests. I wish we could just ignore uninformed comments and rely on decision-makers to do the research and propose reasonable alternative responses. Then people could focus on discussion of how best to respond to the situation. In a civil society (in the traditional sense of civil as civilized) denial is recognized as not a useful input to the discussion.

      Many of those with AGW views are reasonable and would hold a different view if they were not misinformed. So here’s my message to them.

      “Climategate” is a nothing burger. If one understands the social process of science there is nothing there of import beyond showing everyone scientists are human. Cherry picking a few quotes is a classic move to discredit others. If you think “climategate” is significant then look at the scientific impact: nobody has withdrawn peer-reviewed papers, or questioned the results in their work. This is a canard being used by those with an agenda.

      Global warming caused by humans is now beyond any reasonable scientific doubt for those who have spent their lives studying it. The conspiracy and other reports to the contrary come from people who (1) have an agenda and care not for the science or truth; (2) not taken the time and/or are frankly not capable of understanding the science involved.

      The consequences of global warming are in the future. They will impact people around the world differently and may be catastrophic. Acting now will mitigate those effects at far lower costs than continuing the status quo and reacting. What policies to put in place at the lowest cost that is effective in dealing with the problem is the issue now. Denying the problem is not helpful.

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      michaelC: “Climategate” is a nothing burger.

      If one doesn’t understand how science is supposed to work, this is true.

      michaelC: If one understands the social process of science there is nothing there of import beyond showing everyone scientists are human.

      Apparently, hiding and falsifying data are now part of the scientific process.

      michaelC: The conspiracy and other reports to the contrary come from people who (1) have an agenda and care not for the science or truth; (2) not taken the time and/or are frankly not capable of understanding the science involved.

      When your case is collapsing and all else fails, resort to conspiracy theories. Perhaps someone on the grassy knoll exposed all of those incriminating e-mails.

      From what I see, the agenda of the skeptics is for the truth.

      michaelC: Denying the problem is not helpful.

      The problem has to be proven to exist before it can be denied. You need to get to that first step, and you aren’t there yet.

  • avatar

    @fincar1

    I think the Californians are fleeing mostly overpopulation.

    • 0 avatar
      jkross22

      When Carly Fiorina, who is running for the Senate in CA, saying that when she was CEO of HP and needed to build a new factory, that the one place they would simply not consider building is in CA. Says it all right there on a macro scale.

      Companies big and small are leaving the state, and jobs are following. When the state is bleeding $20B in red this year, and cities like LA have to fire thousands of people that probably shouldn’t have been hired to begin with, you have the ingredients for a complete financial meltdown.

      I’m not worried, though. I’m sure we’ll get bailed out by the other 49 states. Sadly, just like Whitacre’s GM, there is no accountability.

    • 0 avatar
      dartman

      re: jkross22

      Yes Carly did a great job at HP, great enough that the stock lost 60% of of its value during her tenure. She was asked to leave and the board brought in a new CEO Mark Hurd who promptly turned the ship around. Fortune magazine notes: “Hurd is regarded as one of the best managers in the United States for turning around HP and putting it in first place in the sales of desktop computers (since 2007) and laptop computers (since 2006), and increasing its 2008 market share in inkjet and laser printers to 46% and 50.5%, respectively”

      As to your comments about California, you do realize that Cali is “Donor” state and only gets back about .78 cents for every $1.00 sent to Washington. In 2005 that amounted to about a $47 billion dollar difference; maybe its time states like Alabama–which sent in $24b but got back $42b should start pulling their weight and pay back the “Golden State”….

      p.s. I am a 4th generation Texan living in CA since 94 who owns and opened a business in CA, I am not leaving and my business is thriving..good riddance to bad rubbish, makes my job easier…

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      dartman: Yes Carly did a great job at HP, great enough that the stock lost 60% of of its value during her tenure. She was asked to leave and the board brought in a new CEO Mark Hurd who promptly turned the ship around.

      Maybe California should therefore elect Mark Hurd as governor.

      dartman: As to your comments about California, you do realize that Cali is “Donor” state and only gets back about .78 cents for every $1.00 sent to Washington. In 2005 that amounted to about a $47 billion dollar difference; maybe its time states like Alabama–which sent in $24b but got back $42b should start pulling their weight and pay back the “Golden State”….

      A red herring argument…this is completely irrelevant to California’s budget problems, which are caused by rampant over-spending by state government.

      The federal dollars that red states – such as Alabama – receive are largely for defense installations and federally owned lands within their borders. The idea that these states can use this money to balance their budgets is a myth.

      Subtract out those expenditures, and red states subsidize blue ones. Which means that red state residents are paying for New York’s lavish, federally subsidized medical benefits system, for example.

    • 0 avatar
      dartman

      “Maybe California should therefore elect Mark Hurd as governor.”

      Naah…We already have a high tech CEO (Meg Whitman)willing to spend $19 million of her own money for a job that only pays $175k…just the kind of common sense judgment we need in Sacto…or massive corruption and conflict of interest…you decide…

      “A red herring argument…this is completely irrelevant to California’s budget problems, which are caused by rampant over-spending by state government.”

      Gee…Ya think!? No one disputes California’s budget problems, when income no longer matches outgo; voila! – deficit. The underlying problem IMO is the California initiative/referendum process, which allows every special interest group from medical marijuana groups to prison guards to initiate legislation that is required by law to be funded…

      “Subtract out those expenditures, and red states subsidize blue ones. Which means that red state residents are paying for New York’s lavish, federally subsidized medical benefits system, for example.”

      Spoken like a true “red welfare state” proponent…One word: ludicrous; causing laughter because of absurdity; provoking or deserving derision; ridiculous; laughable…

      Can you say unfunded liability?

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      dartman: Gee…Ya think!? No one disputes California’s budget problems, when income no longer matches outgo; voila! – deficit. The underlying problem IMO is the California initiative/referendum process, which allows every special interest group from medical marijuana groups to prison guards to initiate legislation that is required by law to be funded…

      Which has nothing to do with the red herring argument regarding the federal dollars returned to various states. This, of course, is because states are not free to use those dollars in any way that they choose – including reduction of state deficits caused by overspending.

      dartman: Spoken like a true “red welfare state” proponent…One word: ludicrous; causing laughter because of absurdity; provoking or deserving derision; ridiculous; laughable…

      Given that you didn’t refute the original point, I’ll take it that you can’t.

      dartman: Can you say unfunded liability?

      Can you say a state spending more than it takes in taxes? This is the cause of California’s budget problems.

      “Unfunded liability” implies a deficit caused by broken promises of reimbursement for expenditures.

      There is no evidence that the federal government promised to come up with the funds to close California’s state deficit. Nor does it have any obligation to do so.

  • avatar

    @Dukeboy1

    The ancient Greeks knew that the earth was not flat a couple of thousand years before 1492.

  • avatar
    littlehulkster

    Can’t we just talk about cars, people?

    Is that really too much to ask? This is not thetruthaboutpolitics.com.

  • avatar
    srogers

    The Earth’s not flat?

  • avatar
    Slow_Joe_Crow

    This is typical feel good legislation, unfortunately DEQ’s enforcement efforts against industrial polluters is the one part of Oregon that matches the Bush administration. Just muzzling the plants in Boardman would probably hit most of the greenhouse gas goals. The rest could be financed by a “put your money where your mouth is” tax levied on hybrid and electric vehicles.

  • avatar
    liechter

    Every state should do like Oregon does!

  • avatar
    50merc

    Sure, the Oregon Senate is making an unneeded and ineffective sacrifice to the false god of AGW, but I welcome it. My part of the country is happy to take all the investment and prosperity Oregon eschews.

  • avatar
    Robert Schwartz

    Oregon’s Land Use Planning Policies.

  • avatar
    reclusive_in_nature

    If that’s what Oregonians (or is it Oregonites?) want then let ‘em have it. I’m all for state rights even when they do things I don’t agree with. Just don’t try to get the federal government to thrust this kind of legislation on everyone else and we’re cool.

  • avatar
    kkt

    Not only did the ancient Greeks know the earth was spherical, Eratosthanese accurately computed its size in 240 BC. The church officials who prosecuted Galileo didn’t contend that the earth was flat, they thought the earth was round and the sun orbited around it.

    Moedaman, the earth has been warmer or colder, but the current warming is far faster than past changes. Change this fast is very difficult for various plants and animals. If your preferred climate spot moves 1000 miles further north over the course of 100 years, and you scatter your seeds at most a couple of miles from you, you’ve got a serious problem.

  • avatar

    Much of California’s budget problem is caused by mass immigration. The average Californian family pays more than $1,000 in extra taxes to provide around $3,000 to the average immigrant family, according to the US National Academy of Sciences (1997).


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