Obama's 2011 Budget: "Go Arounds" to Circumvent Failed Legislative Initiatives and 2010 Elections
Part Two: Energy and the EPA

Publication Date: Feb. 3, 2010, 5:39 pm, CST

additions & corrections: Feb 5, 2010, 6:53 pm, CST

by Diane W. Collins


Yesterday, we focused on the Obama administration's priorities and failed legislative initiatives as applied to the 2011 Budget. Today, we'll dig deeper into Obama's Budget to see how the finances of various departments are dovetailed to optimize Obama's cap-and-trade agenda.


As previously mentioned, the Budget funds the Department of Energy with a total discretionary authority (TDA) of $28B; and provides an additional $36B in guaranteed loan volume to support nuclear energy. Most conservatives including myself are glad to see this. However, don't hold your breath. The Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) says it will take some time before new plants could be online.


The Budget under Energy also proposes to eliminate fossil fuel subsidies. This would result in a "$39B tax increase to the oil, gas and coal industries over the next decade," according to the Associated Press. And the Independent Petroleum Association of America claims the elimination of the subsidies would end up "causing oil companies to scale back drilling budgets 20% to 40%." This scale back would reduce supply and force the price of fossil fuels up. Further, We couldn't depend on green alternatives to replace immediate losses in fossil fuel production because the quantity and means of delivery for green energy currently do not exist. Thus, the price of the nation's energy would skyrocket. But wait, the war against fossil fuels gets worse.


Inclusive in TDA, Obama's Budget under the Department of Energy invests $2.3B to "address climate change, develop new industries, and create jobs." Another stated purpose of the department is to "accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy" and to "continue... efforts to reduce environmental risks..." There's also an increase of $266M or 4.6% in funding for the Office of Science and world-leading laboratories to "support transformational scientific discoveries and accelerate solutions to our Nation's most pressing challenges"... The Department of Energy's $28B TDA balance sheet includes the following highlighted items:$5B for Energy Resources; $6B for Environmental Management; and $5B for Science. The use of these monies is further explained in Appendix: Energy Department and shows a clear bend toward working to establish cap-and-trade effects.


The power play continues to gain momentum. Obama's Budget dovetails the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency, (EPA) in financing and executing cap-and-trade. Potentially, this would optimize effectiveness and obfuscate the amount of money and resources allocated toward the cap-and-trade agenda. The Budget funds the EPA's total discretionary authority (TDA) at $10B inclusive of the following highlights: An Operating Budget of $3.8B whose purpose is to "support regulatory, research, and enforcement activities; $1.3B for a Superfund used for environmental clean up (Appendix: Environmental Protection Agency); and $21M to implement the Mandatory Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule. Obama's Budget for the EPA calls for "a climate change policy to reduce greenhouse gas emission in the United States more than 80 percent below 2005 levels by 2050," and a near-term target of 17 percent reduction by 2020.


Reading this, how can anyone in light of the President's recent statements believe he has the economy and jobs foremost in his mind? He is obviously allocating billions toward yet another program the American people have told him they don't want... cap-and-trade. And it doesn't stop there...


(Much more as we continue our series on, "Obama's 2011 Budget: "Go Arounds" to Circumvent Failed Legislative Initiatives and 2010 Elections." Part Three)