Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Lies, Damned Lies, and NRDC’s Magic Math

From the Canada Free Press:
Given that the LCFS mandates certain types of fuel instead of allowing people to choose their preferred fuels, it is easy to see how the LCFS would increase fuel costs. But the NRDC argues the exact opposite—that the AB 32 measures, including the LCFS, will save Californians $50 billion in fuel costs by 2020.

NRDC, however, is less than transparent about where the $50 billion figure comes from. The source link they provide merely refers readers to another NRDC blog post. From there, NRDC links to two studies. The first, the California Air Resource Board’s (CARB) 2008 AB 32 Scoping Plan, merely claims that all of California’s energy efficiency programs have saved more than $50 billion over the last 30 years, not that AB 32 in general, or the LCFS in particular, would save consumers $50 billion over the next decade.

As IER has previously discussed, the Scoping Plan is not based on sound economics. For CARB to find benefits from the LCFS, they “chose to assume that alternative fuels could be produced at prices at or below the pretax wholesale cost of petroleum fuels on an energy equivalent basis,” as IER Senior Fellow Dr. Robert Michaels explains.
Bureaucrats are always trying to justify their job.  I'm surprised there's nothing about "saving lives" in their voodoo math.

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