May 21

Dovetailing nicely with Bjørn Lomborg’s column, The Climate-Industrial Complex (which we posted last night), GE’s CEO, Jeff Immelt, validates Lomborg’s position.

…GE’s CEO Jeff Immelt appeared on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” May 20 to discuss the White House meeting of President Barack Obama’s 16-member Economic Recovery Advisory Board headed by former Federal Reserve chief Paul Volcker.

Immelt used his platform at CNBC to make the case for a cap-and-trade program to curb emissions – something Obama has called for and one Congressional committee is debating this week.

“There’s going to have to be a price for carbon,” Immelt said. “In some way, shape of form, you’re going to have to create some certainty. You have to make technology your friend in this debate. But we sit here today Becky, I think about things like global warming. We’ve been on this for four or five years.”

Immelt contended he wasn’t an environmentalist, despite criticism that his networks’ have patterns of promoting the green agenda. Immelt told “Squawk Box” the science surrounding man-caused global warming was “compelling” and that it was only a matter of time before something will be done about carbon emissions.

“I think the science, as a CEO I’m not an environmentalist – just purely as a CEO that has to make a payroll – things like that,” Immelt continued. “The science is compelling, so it’s a question of when and not if there’s going to be something done on carbon. Give us some certainty and let’s go.”

The General Electric CEO said he favored a cap-and-trade system to regulate carbon emissions versus a carbon tax.

“Look, I’ve said it – there’s got to be a price for carbon,” Immelt said. “I’ve come to the conclusion that cap-and-trade is the most effective way to create a market and go. There’s going to be people that argue for taxes. But, I – I just think cap-and-trade is the more practical approach. But let’s debate all that stuff, but let’s get it done.”

Austan Goolsbee, a former campaign flack now serving on the Council of Economic Advisers and staff director and chief economist of Obama’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board, joined Immelt in the CNBC segment. Goolsbee called for cooperation between the private sector and the federal government for the sake of the green agenda.

“Here’s a case where government policy with the private sector working together is the only way that it really can get done,” Goolsbee said. “And looking at it internationally too, it’s got to be done in an international context, so the U.S. isn’t the only one passing these rules. But we’ve fallen behind in this. This is a place where the government’s energy policy could be used in a way that would help American business and thus far you know, has been less so we’re trying to push that today in this meeting.”

Hat tip: Drudge

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Sep 12

The Wall Street Journal’s Environmental Capital blog:

The U.S. Congress may be “out of gas” when it comes to drafting an energy policy, as the Washington Post edit page moans, but General Electric’s John Krenecki doesn’t mind giving legislators a push.

The head of GE Energy, the conglomerate’s unit that makes everything from wind turbines to nuclear reactors, flew down to Washington again today to plead with senators to extend tax credits for renewable energy. The credits, still crucial to making clean energy competitive, are set to expire at the end of the year, despite at least eight tries so far to renew them. That threatens to slam the brakes on two gangbuster years for American wind and solar power.
“I’m prepared to come down every week to say the same thing,” he told us. “If the production tax credit expires in the U.S., the wind industry will collapse. As the clock ticks, you put jobs at risk.

And why is Mr. Krenecki willing to “come down every week to say the same thing”? Because GE brings big government to life, i.e. a company as large and mature as GE no longer has much to gain with a free market. It’s much easier to get in bed with the government and reap massive revenue in (“clean energy” or fill-in-the-blank) subsidies, and at the same time solidify their position in the marketplace to hinder new competitors.

GORE LIED is for free markets, which is wholly different than being pro-business; although many folks don’t understand the difference. GL is all for eliminating subsidies of all kinds: to oil companies, to the solar industry, to wind power, to nuclear power, to farmers, to everybody. Let everyone compete on a level playing field – sink or swim. Let the market decide. GL loves all sources of energy. The more choices we have to meet our energy needs, all the better for consumers. Let consumers make their own decisions. If they want to hug a tree and heat and power their home with solar and wind, so be it.

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