Mike Bloomberg on Energy & Oil

Mayor of New York City (Independent)


You can reduce CO2: turn off your AC & paint your roof white

Bloomberg Philanthropies, working with the Sierra Club, is trying to close all of the coal-fired power plants in this country. So far, we have closed or in the process of closing 304 out of the 530 coal-powered power plants in this country. So we're like 60% there already, and we have a plan. That's the biggest thing you can do to reduce greenhouse gases.

But we also do a lot of work trying to encourage people to behave responsibly. If you want to do something for the climate, turn off your air conditioning when you leave in the morning, if there's nobody home. You will save a lot of energy and greenhouse gases.

Paint your roof white. We had this program in NYC. Al Gore and I got up on these flat roof buildings, painting. And people laughed at us, but the white paint reflects off the sun, reduces the need for energy to cool your house. And if you fly over NYC now, almost every single building has been painted white, because, for two cans of paint, you save 25% on your electric bill.

Source: CNN S. C. Town Hall for 2020 Presidential primary , Feb 26, 2020

Convince China & India that they'll lose from climate change

Q: Your business is heavily invested in China, the number one producer in the world of carbon emissions. How far would you go to force China to reduce those emissions and tackle the climate crisis?

BLOOMBERG: Well, you're not going to go to war with them. You have to negotiate with them--and we've seen how well that works with tariffs that are hurting us. What you have to do is convince the Chinese that it is in their interest, as well. Their people are going to die just as our people are going to die. And we'll work together. In all fairness, the China has slowed down. It's India that is an even bigger problem. But it is an enormous problem. Nobody's doing anything about it. We could right here in America make a big difference. We're closing the coal-fired power plants. If we could enforce some of the rules on fracking so that they don't release methane into the air and into the water, you'll make a big difference.

Source: MSNBC's 9th Democrat primary debate, in Las Vegas , Feb 19, 2020

Fracking is ok as a transitional fuel, until 2050

Q [to KLOBUCHAR]: You call fracking a transitional fuel?

Sen. Amy KLOBUCHAR: I have made it very clear that we have to review all of the permits that are out there right now for natural gas and then make decisions on each one of them and then not grant new ones until we make sure that it's safe. But it is a transitional fuel.

BLOOMBERG: If we could enforce some of the rules on fracking so that they don't release methane into the air and into the water, you'll make a big difference. But we're not going to get rid of fracking for a while. And, incidentally, not just natural gas. You frack oil, as well. It is a technique, and when it's done poorly, like they're doing in too many places where the methane gets out into the air, it is very damaging. But it's a transition fuel, I think the senator said it right. We want to go to all renewables. But that's still many years from now.

Source: MSNBC's 9th Democrat primary debate, in Las Vegas , Feb 19, 2020

Outdated solar arrays are closing because they lose money

Vice President Joe BIDE: I went out to a facility where you have one of the largest solar panel arrays in the world. It will be able to take care of 60,000 homes for every single bit of their needs. I would work on providing the $47 billion to find a way to transmit that solar energy. Invest in battery technology.

BLOOMBERG: The solar array that the vice president is talking about is being closed because it's not economic. You can put solar panels into technology even more modern than that.

Source: MSNBC's 9th Democrat primary debate, in Las Vegas , Feb 19, 2020

Make climate change a U.S. priority; rejoin Paris Agreement

Mike will immediately rejoin the Paris Agreement, re-assert global leadership by laying out an aggressive plan for U.S carbon reduction, and rally other countries to curb climate change. He will make climate change a priority of U.S. foreign policy. And he will protect the U.S. from climate-related security risks and protect the world's most vulnerable people from the impacts of climate change.

Mike will accelerate the use of clean energy to replace power from fossil fuels. He will set limits on air and water pollution from power plants. He will invest in communities that have suffered most from coal pollution or have been left behind in the transition to clean energy. He will expand incentives to make clean energy affordable for all families. And he will quadruple the federal R&D investment in clean energy and end subsidies for fossil fuels.

Mike will create a national program to invest in upgrading homes and buildings to save energy and reduce pollution.

Source: 2020 Presidential campaign website MikeBloomberg.com , Jan 20, 2020

Make pollution-free homes & vehicles available for all

Mike will make electric vehicles affordable for all families. He will strengthen gas mileage and pollution standards for cars and trucks and add a national zero-emissions vehicle standard. He will reduce diesel pollution from trucks and buses and help businesses and school districts choose electric vehicles. He will build a network of charging stations along the interstate highway system. And he will invest in local and regional public transit systems.

Mike will create a national program to invest in upgrading homes and buildings to save energy and reduce pollution. Mike will set a 100% pollution-free goal for new homes and buildings by 2025. He will shift equipment and appliances from fossil fuels to clean energy to increase energy efficiency and reduce pollution. And he will make clean buildings affordable for everyone and make sure building investments create good jobs.

Source: 2020 Presidential campaign website MikeBloomberg.com , Jan 20, 2020

Founded $500 million group advocating energy reform

Bloomberg founded Beyond Carbon earlier this year, a $500 million group that advocates for energy reform. The group is in favor of renewable energy sources, like wind and solar, instead of coal power. It favors electric vehicles instead of those run by fossil fuels. The group has said it is "working to get the country on the path to a 100 percent clean energy economy," without giving a specific time frame for the goal.
Source: CNBC's coverage of on 2019 Democratic primary , Nov 24, 2019

$218M effort led to closure of 282 coal-fired power plants

The network of Bloomberg Philanthropies recipients is vast, and it includes mayors throughout the country as well as grassroots climate-change, gun-control and education advocates.

For instance, Bloomberg has contributed $218 million for clean-energy efforts that, among other results, have led to the closure of 282 coal-fired power plants. But he does not oppose, at least in the short term, other fossil fuel use--and that's not good enough for climate change activists

Source: Politico.com on 2020 Democratic primary hopefuls , Feb 19, 2019

America should be big part of climate solution

Q: Special Envoy to the United Nations for Climate Action Michael Bloomberg tells us he's making good on his pledge to help America's financial commitment to the Paris climate change accords, an international agreement that President Trump pulled out of last year:

BLOOMBERG: If the government is not going to do it, we all have a responsibility. I'm able to do it. So, yes, I'm going to send them a check for the monies that America had promised to the organization as though they got it from federal government.

Q: $4.5 million dollars this year. Will you do the same next year?

BLOOMBERG: Hopefully, by then, President Trump will have changed his view.

Q: President Trump has been a huge critic of this Paris climate change accord.

BLOOMBERG: Yes, but he should change his mind and say, "look, there really is a problem here, America is part of the problem, America is a big part of the solution," and we should go in and help the world stop a potential disaster.

Source: CBS Face the Nation 2018 interviews of 2020 hopefuls , Apr 22, 2018

If some countries do right thing on climate, we all benefit

Q: One of the criticisms of the Paris climate change accords, is that it's nonbinding. And none of the developed nations who are part of it have actually met their benchmarks.

BLOOMBERG: Look, it's dangerous to keep doing what we're doing. If everybody would do the right thing, yes, it would be better. But if some people or some countries do the right thing, we all benefit from that.

Q: But the criticism is that industrialized nations aren't living up to those pledges.

BLOOMBERG: I can't speak for other nations. All I know is that America, I believe, will meet its commitment by 2025 to reduce greenhouse gasses by an agreed amount. And if we do it, hopefully, other countries will do it as well.

Q: Do you feel like you're filling a leadership gap?

BLOOMBERG: This is what the American public say they want to do. You have got companies and states and individuals all agreeing to step in, report to the United Nations what our progress is, fulfill our commitment to fund part of it.

Source: CBS Face the Nation 2018 interviews of 2020 hopefuls , Apr 22, 2018

US must set real and binding carbon reduction targets

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Bali, which was my privilege to address, was an historic gathering. It set the stage for a global compact that advances the progress begun some 10 years ago at Kyoto.

However, between now and the Copenhagen Conference next year, we must establish, I think, the preconditions for such progress. Both developed and developing nations must recognize the need to alter their policies and make serious commitments to change. And I believe that our experience in New York City, and the experience of many of the world’s other great cities, too, can help guide that process.

The first precondition for making the Copenhagen negotiations a success, I believe, is that the US, which leads the world in greenhouse gas production, must finally set real and binding carbon reduction targets. And I believe the American people are prepared to accept our responsibility to lead by example.

Source: Speech to the United Nations on tropical hardwoods , Feb 11, 2008

Reducing carbon output increases socio-economic well-being

NYC’s experience is illustrative, because as we’ve embarked on reducing our carbon footprint, we’ve learned that reducing your carbon production increases the social and economic well-being of your people. Let me quickly cite four examples.
  1. We’re converting our city’s taxi fleet to hybrid cars, reducing carbon by 1/2%. It will also clean our air of pollutants.
  2. We’ve proposed a program of congestion pricing, designed to discourage driving in our busy business district during the peak weekday hours. It will also make our economy more productive, and finance the new transit lines we desperately need.
  3. We’re working to green our buildings--again, not just to cut carbon emissions, but also because it will allow us to redirect billions to better purposes.
  4. We’re planting one million trees throughout our city during the next ten years. They will not only capture carbon dioxide, but also clean the air, cool our streets, reduce street flooding, and raise property values.
Source: Speech to the United Nations on tropical hardwoods , Feb 11, 2008

Cities are taking the lead on climate change

Serious carbon targets will not hamper growth, and it will leave us all better off. If the US and the developing nations make such commitments, then the prospects for a new international global warming accord improve greatly. The world cannot wait for 2009. Global warming demands immediate action. The world’s great cities recognize that. Leaders in local governments around the globe are already moving aggressively and creatively to fight climate change.

It’s why, even though our national government has yet to approve the Kyoto Protocol, more than 700 cities in the US, representing more than 80 million Americans, have pledged to meet its goals. And it’s why, later this year, NYC will convene a 2-day conference of representatives from more than 20 major world cities. It will feature experts in such fields as transportation, city planning, public health; and it will address the challenges that the world’s cities share in reducing urban air pollution and curbing climate change.

Source: Speech to the United Nations on tropical hardwoods , Feb 11, 2008

While greenhouse gas pollution is free, it will be abundant

We have to stop ignoring the laws of economics. As long as greenhouse gas pollution is free, it will be abundant. If we want to reduce it, there has to be a cost for producing it. The voluntary targets suggested by Pres. Bush would be like voluntary speed limits--doomed to fail. If we’re serious about climate change, the question is not whether we should put a value on greenhouse gas pollution, but how we should do it. [I prefer a direct charge over cap-and-trade].
Source: Keynote Address to the US Conference of Mayors , Nov 2, 2007

PlaNYC: convert 13,000 taxis to hybrids or high-efficiency

I think illegal guns and climate change are two of the best examples of cities leading where Washington has not. On both issues, those in Washington prefer talk to action. The Second Amendment [is used as] a political duck-and-cover that allows legislators to escape responsibility for fixing a serious problem.

On climate change, the duck-and-cover usually involves pointing the finger at others. It’s China-this & India-that. But wait a second. This is the United States of America. When there’s a major challenge, we don’t wait for others to act. We lead. And we lead by example. That’s what all of us here are doing.

When we developed our long-term sustainability plan in NYC, which we call PlaNYC, we made no apologies for stealing the very best ideas--and we came up with some of our own, including converting our 13,000 taxis to hybrids or high-efficiency vehicles. This will not only help clean our air and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, it will save each driver about $4,500 a year in gas costs

Source: Keynote Address to the US Conference of Mayors , Nov 2, 2007

Direct charge over cap-and-trade, to raise cost of carbon

If we’re serious about climate change, the question is not whether we should put a value on greenhouse gas pollution, but how we should do it. To raise the cost of carbon, we can take either an indirect approach--creating a cap-and-trade system of pollution credits--or a direct approach: charging a fee for greenhouse gas pollutants.

Cap-and-trade is an easier political sell because the costs are hidden--but they’re still there. There are also logistical issues: The market for trading carbon credits will be much more difficult to police than the market for the sulfur dioxide credits that greatly reduced acid rain.

A direct charge would eliminate the uncertainty that companies would face in a cap-and-trade system. It would be easier to implement and enforce, it would prevent special interests from opening up loopholes, & it would create an opportunity to cut taxes.

Source: Keynote Address to the US Conference of Mayors , Nov 2, 2007

Make NYC first environmentally-sustainable city

New York City's emissions are already less than 1/3 of the national average on a per capita basis. Nevertheless the city has reduced its emissions another 446,000 metric tons a year through the use of hybrid and clean fuel vehicles, more energy-efficient equipment, & planting street trees. In 2007, Mayor Michael Bloomberg released a comprehensive blueprint to make NYC "the first environmentally sustainable 21st-century city." Its most controversial provision calls for $8 a day "congestion pricing" charge for people who drive into mid-Manhattan. Similar plans have reduced congestion, and emissions, in London and Singapore. The funds raised from the fee would finance major mass transit projects. Most of NYC's remaining emissions, about 80% of the total, ar generated by buildings. NYC plans a vigorous effort to reduce the emissions by another 30% by decreasing energy use in its buildings through computer controls on heating, air-conditioning, and lighting; green roofing; and other conservation measures.
Source: Giving, by Bill Clinton, p.197 , Sep 4, 2007

Reduce NYC carbon emissions by 30% by 2030

An increasing number of people on both sides of the aisle now recognize a major problem: global warming. The science is undeniable and more than any other issue, climate change highlights the need for long-term plans that begin tackling the causes of the problem now.

In New York, we’ve laid out our own detailed plans for reducing carbon emissions by 30% by 2030, investing in more clean energy sources and creating a truly sustainable 21st century city. And we’re going to hold ourselves accountable for meeting interim goals.

Anybody can set goals for 2050 or 2070--but we’ll never reach them unless we start taking real action now. That’s what California and New York are doing, along with many other cities and states. But the federal legislators, as usual, are way behind the curve--laughably setting goals for some far off time when they’ll all be dead and can’t be held accountable!

Source: Speech at “Ceasefire! Bridging The Political Divide” meeting , Jun 18, 2007

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Other big-city mayors on Energy & Oil: Mike Bloomberg on other issues:

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Former Mayors:
Rocky Anderson (I,Salt Lake City)
Tom Barrett (D,Milwaukee,WI)
Mike Bloomberg (I,New York City)
Cory Booker (D,Newark,NJ)
Jerry Brown (D,Oakland,CA)
Julian Castro (D,San Antonio,TX)
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Phil Gordon (D,Phoenix)
Tom Menino (D,Boston)
Dennis Kucinch (D,Cleveland,OH)
Michael Nutter (D,Philadelphia)
Sarah Palin (R,Wasilla,AK)
Annise Parker (D,Houston)
Jerry Sanders (R,San Diego)
Antonio Villaraigosa (D,Los Angeles)
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