Looking good!

Donald Trump has selected one of the best-known climate skeptics to lead his U.S. EPA transition team, according to two sources close to the campaign. For my money I hope that the US EPA are downgraded to toddling off down to the White House backyard to just check the rain gauge. ........ On election eve Hillary chose not to front her supporters but had John Podesta stand in for her. In case you missed it, that's this John Podesta, who is part of a Greens cabal that costs Australia $1.2 billion annually and denies us the income of billions of dollars from royalties and tax. He may still have an impact but at least it won't be the US Government attacking our economy. Meanwhile, the Democrats get some payback as their battle to close down coal gets a kickback in the elections. Why has Adarni had to endure 7 years of Green tape. What the hell is going on? Fix it Turnbull, before you feel the wrath of us Aussie Deplorables  

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  • Voters in the down ballots last week passed quite a few laws that indicate they have a concern for the environment, even as Trump bleats about the effects of abatement on the US economy –
    1. Massachusetts passed a law banning the sale of meat or animal products based on mistreatment of farm animals.
    2. Several mass transit initiatives were approved – Seattle is planning light rail, San Francisco will be updating its Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) system and LA — the city that made the car famous — approved a sales-tax hike to expand everything from bus and rail services to bike lanes and sidewalks.
    3. “Right to farm” defeated in Oklahoma. In a pretty resounding defeat for factory farms and big agriculture, Oklahomans voted against amending the state constitution to include the right to farm and ranch. If the measure had passed, factory farms (which bankrolled the “Yes” campaign) would have enjoyed wide-reaching deregulation, opening the door to more animal cruelty and pollution. Native Americans and environmentalists were among the many groups opposing the amendment, which received support from fewer than 40% of voters.
    4. Californians voted to ban single-use plastic bags in supermarkets, retail stores, pharmacies, food marts and liquor stores. Many cities in California including Los Angeles, San Francisco and Sacramento already had bans in place, but it’s now statewide.
    5. “Florida Solar Energy Subsidies and Personal Solar Use Initiative” was defeated. This was an attempted con job backed by big utilities. It used convoluted language to limit solar power expansion through restricting personal use and third-party sales of solar energy in an effort to keep the utilities’ monopoly intact. The increasing use of solar in sunny Florida is buggering up the energy companies’ business model.
    6. Outdoor school funding passed in Oregon. Oregonians — being the delightful treehuggers they are — passed a measure to set aside up to $22 million in revenue from the lottery to fund Outdoor School, after it had been threatened with defunding without voter approval. Oregonians also overwhelmingly passed a measure banning the sale of parts from 12 different animals: Whales, sea turtles, elephants, rhinos, lions, tigers, leopards, cheetahs, jaguars, sharks, rays and pangolins. Anyone violating the new law will face felony-level fines.
    7. Voters in Nevada passed Question 3, which called for the deregulation of the state’s energy industry, including the elimination of monopolies. This opens the door to renewable energy technology and markets.
    8. Voters in Alabama decided to put an end to their legislature’s pillaging of state park funds. Amendment 2, which prohibits the government from using state park funds (90% of which come from guest fees) for non-parks purposes, received more support than any of the other 13 initiatives on the ballot. It was a direct response to $15 million being transferred out of the parks budget into the state’s General Fund from 2012 to 2015.
    9. A relatively simple measure in Missouri asked voters to renew a sales tax for the next 10 years to be used on conservation projects and state parks. The initiative passed with 80% of the vote and had no real opposition.
    10. In a straightforward down-ballot initiative, Rhode Island voters approved raising $35 million via bonds to pay for environmental and recreational projects.
    State legislatures in the US have the power to develop their own climate change mitigation measures irrespective of what Congress authorizes, and many have done so. They include the Western Climate Initiative (WCI) involving Arizona, California, Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and British Columbia, Manitoba, and Ontario; the Midwest Governors’ Accord, (AKA Midwestern Greenhouse Gas Reduction Accord) involving Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, and Kansas; the Southwest Climate Change Initiative (Arizona and New Mexico); and the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Massachusetts, Maryland, and Rhode Island);
    These initiatives cross party lines and are, on the whole, not driven by ideology. To assume that Trump’s election will end climate change action across the Pacific is naive to say the least, and indicates a complete misunderstanding of how governance works over there.
    Another interesting sidelight on the down-ballot decisions relates to gun control. More restrictive gun controls in Nevada and California have got up despite massive funding of the “no” case by the NRA – http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2016/11/09/Gun-control-measures-pass-in-California-Nevada-fail-in-Maine/1671478700355/
    Except for Maine, that’s looking good.

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