‘No More Fossil Lovers!’, BXE Disrupts Hearing For New FERC Commissioner

| Resist!

Above photo: From Beyond Extreme Energy.

Washington, DC – Members of Beyond Extreme Energy (BXE) spoke out at the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing for James Danly, who was nominated by President Trump to be the third Republican commissioner at FERC, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. BXE members unfurled a banner reading “Reject Danly” and yelled “FERC: No more fossil lovers! Wind and solar now!” before being arrested. The Danly nomination has been controversial because the Republican Danly was not paired with a Democrat nominee, as has been the norm at FERC for years.

Danly is not qualified to be a FERC commissioner. Let us count the ways:

He just graduated from law school in 2014. He had no regulatory experience when he was appointed by Pres. Trump in 2017 to be general counsel at FERC. 

He does his work as a triumvirate, having brought two colleagues from his former job to the agency, who accompany him everywhere. This does not bespeak competence.

His philosophy of “the humble regulator” harkens back to the desire of conservatives to shrink government small enough to drown it in a bathtub. He is a strict constructionist whom one advisor to regulators says, according to an article in E&E, “To suggest that FERC may do nothing not explicitly stated is to misunderstand Congress’ intent. Congress chose not to describe every specific tool the Commission may use, because no Congress would have the expertise or foresight to know what those tools are.” This brand of ‘malicious compliance’ will only worsen FERC’s reputation as a weak regulator. FERC has only rejected 2 out of 400 projects in the last 30 years. 

The article continued, “Evidence of Danly‘s belief in the ‘humble regulator’ theory might be found in his leading the commission last year to abandon the approach it had employed toward evaluating the effects of downstream greenhouse gas emissions from natural gas projects, using authority found in the National Environmental Policy Act.”

Earlier this year, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit criticized FERC for its “decidedly less-than-dogged efforts to obtain the information it says it would need to determine that downstream greenhouse-gas emissions qualify as a reasonably foreseeable indirect effect of a project.”

Finally and most importantly, climate scientists say we have until 2030 to cut global greenhouse gases in half if we hope to avoid irreversible climate catastrophe. Building out fracked gas projects such as those that FERC rubber stamps will not cut it. We need to transform FERC into FREC — the Federal Renewable Energy Commission. Danly’s contributions would only send us backwards.

  • voza0db

    ‘No More Fossil Lovers!’… GO TELL THAT TO CALIFORNIANS!

    They will screw you!

    “California is on track to miss its climate targets—by a century

    Shining reputation: California has established itself as a model on climate issues, with the nation’s first economy-wide cap-and-trade program, fuel efficiency standards, and pollution rules. But it also offers a case study in just how hard it is to make progress on the only thing that really matters: reducing emissions.

    Progress: The state’s climate pollution declined by just 1.15% in 2017, according to the latest California Green Innovation Index. At that rate, California won’t reach its 2050 decarbonization targets (cutting emissions to 80% below 1990 levels) until 2157.

    What happened? Emissions from transport, waste, refrigeration and air conditioning are rising sharply. These have offset the declines from the electricity sector. (I say: THEY JUST DON’T GIVE A F U C K)

    Even worse: It’s likely to get harder, not easier, for California to achieve ever deeper cuts in emissions, thanks to slowing progress for renewables, wildfires, and difficult-to-clean-up sectors like transportation and agriculture.” source: MIT Technology Review”