N.J. Lawmaker Aims to Repeal Warming Laws

Published October 9, 2008

New Jersey Assemblyman Michael Doherty (R-Warren) says new scientific data justify repealing the state’s wide-ranging list of regulations aimed at reducing global warming.

Doherty on August 14 urged Gov. Jon Corzine (D) to hold off on proposing any new regulations associated with New Jersey’s Global Warming Response Act, which the governor signed into law last year, as skepticism grows among scientists about the causes and severity of global warming.

Doherty specifically called for the legislature to repeal the law when it returns to business after Labor Day.

Global Cooling Predicted

“There are many credible members of the scientific community who have questioned the theory of global warming, and now we have some scientists actually suggesting the Earth’s temperatures may be entering a period of dramatic cooling,” said Doherty.

“With this growing level of scientific uncertainty, it makes no sense to enact a new set of economically damaging regulations prompted by the global warming hysteria of recent years,” Doherty continued.

The Global Warming Response Act requires the state to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 20 percent by 2020 and 80 percent by 2050. Additionally, the state Department of Environmental Protection was ordered to release a report detailing how New Jersey would meet the goals, with recommendations expected to be issued this fall.

According to recent news reports, a top observatory that has been measuring sunspot activity predicts global temperatures will drop by two degrees over the next 20 years as solar activity slows and the planet dramatically cools down as a result. Observatory scientists suggest this could herald the onset of a new ice age.

Following the end of the sun’s most active period in more than 11,000 years, the past 10 years have displayed a clear cooling trend as temperatures post-1998 leveled out and are now decreasing.

Warming Theory Questioned

Earlier this year, prominent meteorologist John Coleman, founder of The Weather Channel, stated the widespread worry over manmade global warming is “the greatest scam in history,” adding, “I am amazed, appalled, and highly offended by it. Global warming—it is a scam.” Coleman said the theory of global warming is based on fraudulent science.

The Oregon Institute for Science and Medicine has been shepherding a list of more than 31,000 American scientists—more than 10,000 of whom have Ph.D. degrees—who signed a declaration saying, “There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth.”

Economic Consequences

Doherty said, “New Jersey’s tax and regulatory climate is already chasing jobs from this state left and right, and these new regulations will make matters worse.

“Rather than conforming our policies to questionable scientific theories, we should be looking at the concrete economic indicators that show our state’s economy is in trouble. And we should be taking steps to help people who are losing jobs and being forced out of their homes by this state’s anti-economic growth agenda—not making matters worse,” Doherty added.

Dan Miller ([email protected]) is executive vice president of The Heartland Institute.