Update: Green Scissors Partners With Climate Change Deniers


This year’s report by Green Scissors, a coalition of progressive and conservative organizations, is a disappointment.

The report recommends phasing out the National Flood Insurance Program and does not propose an alternative.†† They would do this gradually, their reason being that, in their view, the program is badly run, owes the Treasury 18 billion dollars and encourages construction on environmentally fragile coastlines.

Surprisingly, the report does not favor bringing back the Hybrid Tax Credit, which expired in January.† Here’s why:

The structure of the hybrid tax credit over the past few years has incentivized the sale of inefficient hybrids at the expense of the most fuel efficient models. The hybrid car tax credit applied to only the first 60,000 cars sold by any automaker. The first companies to come to market with practical, fuel efficient, desirable hybrids ó Toyota, Honda and Ford ó all exhausted the credit well before it officially expired, leaving their cars no longer eligible for the credit. (Many cut their prices in response.) This left companies that were slow to develop this technology ó like GM, Nissan and Chrysler ó or that sold less attractive products, with a relative advantage because their products were still eligible for the tax credits. These late developers also happen to be producing less fuel efficient vehicles than their counterparts, creating a situation where taxpayers subsidize and incentivize the purchase of less efficient hybrid vehicles.

What is different about the Green Scissors project this year, which started in 1994, is that one of its supporters is the Heartland Institute.† Think Progress calls the Heartland Institute a “fiercely anti-climate action organization that has been on the front lines of pushing misinformation and pseudo-science in order to create an artificial ‘debate’ over climate change.”

Heartland’s President, Joseph Bast, told Climate Progress recently that “we are a fossil fuel dependent economy and I donít think thatís a bad thing…. The ecological impact of that reliance is not negative.”

One of the things Green Scissors touts as its raison d’etre is that it “strives to make environmental and fiscal responsibility a priority in Washington.” If that’s the case, and in the past it has been, then why did Green Scissors add a right-wing, anti-environment group as one of its supporters?† Of course there are groups on the other side viewed with scorn by the right, too.† Green Scissors responds that only by working in a bipartisan coalition can they maintain the credibility they have had over the years.

To be fair, the report does recommend eliminating subsidies that really do need to go:

  • $61 billion worth of fossil fuel subsidies
  • Nuclear energy subsidies
  • Volumetric Ethanol Excise Tax Credit, which is set to expire at the end of this year. Eliminating it would save $15 million a day.
  • Renewable Fuels Standard because it “mandates the use of an increasing amount of biofuels each year, regardless of actual demand or economic and environmental impact.” The Volumetric Ethanol Excise Tax Credit and Renewable Fuels Standard combined will cost $56 billion from 2011-2015.
  • So-called clean coal technologies
  • Agriculture subsidies, including commodity crops, which would save $20 billion, plus the Market Access Program, and crop insurance
  • Subsidies to mine and log timber on federal land

Even with all the good recommendations, it is still disconcerting that Green Scissors partners with an organization which held a climate change deniers conference last month.

Related Stories:

Perry: Climate Change Is A Hoax Invented By Dollar-Hungry Scientists

Bachmann Wants To Lock Up The EPA and Turn Out The Lights

The Solar Power Funding Avalanche

Photo: Flickr user, ciron810


Vanessa S.
Vanessa S6 years ago

Before reading this article, I had never even heard of Green Scissors. With the information given, I can understand their point of view regarding the National Flood Insurance Program. That being said, I believe that recommending phasing out this program without proposing a more appropriate alternative is not only unrealistic, but it's also irresponsible.

Horsehockey Horace
Past Member 6 years ago

Hey! It's called "Green Scissors"!.....means cutting green, I suppose. Astro-turf is green also, but it ain't real grass. Heh Heh!

Mike M.
Mike M.6 years ago

The truth is finally starting to come out about what a hoax global warming is. More and more scientists are abandoning ship (it's now less then 60% of American scientists believe in global warming). When Gore was presented some facts from the scientific community he screamed and yelled, "that's not true, there really is global warming". Some of these were from his own panel that was claiming global warming. Now, they're not so sure or have come forward and stated that it's not true. Yet, now it is to late. To many important people will look like the fools they are if they admit it was a mistake.

Scott M.
Its wonderful e6 years ago

If you really want to know one of the major causes of climate check out CERN the large European Science agency and SUN or cosmic rays.
The other big item is volcanoes....

We are trying to stop Niagara Falls with a teacup.....

Scott M.
Its wonderful e6 years ago

The argument for the warmers reminds me of the ancients who would sacrifice virgins to ensure a good harvest. In that case only the sacrificies suffered.
Now its all about the money, increase costs so the elites like gore can become a billionaire

Deborah Kampfer
Deborah Vitek6 years ago

It is true that we don't learn anything and "history always repeats itself. The arguments against climate change remind me of the "flat earth" believers when it was proven that the earth was round. If you check you history, things got pretty violent for a while surrounding the round earth idea. This could happen again, but I fear for all of us as history may be repeating, but the set is way, way different and the climate deniers have way more money and "stuff" at their disposal. It is a very scary world.

Louise D.
Louise D6 years ago

Given that the majority of climate change deniers either have no grounding in climate science or are in the pay of the fossil fuel industry. It sort of runs that climate change is a liberal conspiracy as they have something to gain from it, except they don't have anything to gain from it. There is a big flaw in their argument which sort of goes "China isn't doing anything about climate change so why should we?" well there are other things China doesn't do but we do Democracy, human rights and eating cheese to name three doesn't make them right. Given that at least 80% of scientists agree global warming is occuring and if that is enough to persuade your cat what cat food to eat it is good enough for most people. The whole thing has been misrepresentation on a grand scale the anti-climate change brigade. Still when this was pointed out to one their reply was "You're a big daft cock!" sort of shows the level of the debate. The real problem is what happens if we do nothing and it does occur, then I am sure the climate change deniers will be saying well at least there is a lot more beach front property now and all those people who died in the floods & hurriciane did because God was angry with the way how Big government was trying to control people's lives.

Patrick F.
Patrick f6 years ago

At the point where hurricane Irene started, did there happen to be a Republican convention there?

Ellen Mccabe
Ellen m6 years ago

Progressing baclwards as I see it.

Isabel Araujo
Isabel Araujo6 years ago

Very disappointing...