Bill Weld on Energy & Oil

Former Republican Governor; former Senate candidate (MA)


Carbon capture & sequestration technology for global warming

Q: Do you accept that the planet is warming, that humans have greatly contributed to the warming?

JOHNSON: Yeah, I do. But I think that the free market has really addressed this in a big way, that we as consumers are demanding less carbon emission. Coal has been bankrupted. There are just no new coal facilities that are going to be built.

Q: You can certainly do a lot by eliminating coal use, but scientists warn you have to do a lot more than that. Eventually you have to stop burning oil & natural gas-

WELD: Five years ago natural gas was everybody's darling because it wasn't oil and it wasn't coal. I'm kind of skeptical that renewables are going to be 75% of the base in terms of electricity by the year 2045. But I think there's a lot we could do. Technology could get us out of this. The missing piece was carbon capture and sequestration: if somebody figured out a way to sequester CO2 in the ocean in a way that was safe and that it wouldn't come back, that would be a breakthrough.

Source: Washington Post joint interview of Johnson & Weld , Jul 7, 2016

Carbon trading credits but no carbon tax

Q: Do you favor a carbon tax?

JOHNSON: No, I think it's an interesting idea, but I'm so indelibly a no-new-taxes guy.

Q: So how would the U.S. government meet its Paris obligations [on carbon emissions via the international conference]?

WELD: It could be trading, trading credits.

Q: Which requires setting a price on carbon, right?

WELD: Yeah, but not through a tax.

Source: Washington Post joint interview of Johnson & Weld , Jul 7, 2016

As governor, supported hybrid electric cars and natural gas

During his term as Governor, Bill deregulated the electric industry, setting a model for other US states to introduce competition and market mechanisms. He mandated the use of natural gas as fuel for government bus fleets, and was an early proponent of the development of hybrid electric vehicles.
Source: Mintz-Levin Law Firm personnel listings , Jun 6, 2016

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Page last updated: Aug 22, 2016