$3 Billion plus $3 Billion = $3 Billion

Thu, 2006-09-21 10:08Richard Littlemore
Richard Littlemore's picture

$3 Billion plus $3 Billion = $3 Billion

Branson on "space tour"All hail Richard Branson, the billionaire owner of Virgin Atlantic Airways, who has promised (as part of the Clinton Global Initiative) to dedicate the next 10 years of Virgin's transportation profits to combat global warming. That's an estimated $3 billion of new money into research on climate change solutions.

At the same time, let's all acknowledge the continuing position of the Bush Whitehouse, which today re-announced the same roughly $3 billion in annual spending that the American government can, in one way or the other, claim is related to climate change.

President George W. Bush's plan, with effective start dates that are four years away, couldn't even garner unanimous support from Republican politicians - although the Exxon-funded think tank, the American Council for Capital Formation, announced that Bush's new plan was “a substantial, credible effort” to address global warming.
Ouch.

Previous Comments

Wow. The white house has gotta love the fact that they (the largest GHG contributors and the richest nations) put forward the same amount as one guy. Oh yah, if climate change isn’t actually happenening, as the skeptics would have us believe, why would a business Mogul like Branson be willing to drop so much coin on “the myth of global warming.” Announcements like this just make Bush and the skeptics look more and more like throw backs from the caveman days.

Although it makes for a catchy title, it isn’t factually correct.  Branson’s company, amazingly, is contributing $3B over 10 years.  The US federal government spends $3B annually on climate-related and technological research.  Heaven knows I’m sympathetic with your site, but for your own sake you’ll want to keep the credibility up by keeping it factual.

I don’t find any clear evidence that the Whitehouse is adding anything new to the coffers, but I will acknowledge a degree of overstatement that rendered my math ridiculous.

<b>The US federal government spends $3B annually on climate-related and technological research.  Heaven knows I’m sympathetic with your site, but for your own sake you’ll want to keep the credibility up by keeping it factual.</b>

You should take a closer look at the 3B in annual numbers.  The vast majority of that is merely relabeled nuclear fission subsidies that have always existed.  What is left is ITER which won’t play any part in the climate change solution because it will get here about 40 years too late.   The boondoggle of corn-ethanol subsidies and hydrogen make up the rest.  I’d have to check for to know for sure.  However, this one man may actually be outperforming the US in *MEANINGFUL* energy developments.   The whitehouse likes to cook their books.

Guess I’ll be flying Virgin from now on.

I’ve just reviewed the GAO report.  I picked the most important technologies to fight climate change (solar, batteries, OTEC, etc).   This guy is donating more than 3x the DOE’s budget in these area’s.  And this is BEFORE the budget cuts.  There is a very real possibility this guy is not only beating but destroying Bush.