Thursday, July 09, 2009

The Home Energy Retrofit: It's Worse Than We Thought

Last week we discussed how one section of the Waxman-Markey Cap and Trade legislation would require you to retrofit your home if you intend to sell it.

Well, it gets worse than that. You would be subject to official "inspections" if you planned any renovations that require building permits, or if you simply wished to put the utility bills in someone's name other than your own.

At the American Issues Project, they've done a more extensive analysis and come up with a post entitled, "If you don't hate the Cap and Trade Bill, let me show you Section 304." A snippet or two:
I bet you thought that if you bought a house, you actually own it and can, with reasonable exceptions, do with it what you want. You probably think that if you want to live in a log cabin, with wood stoves that belch smoke into the air for heat, and an old washer and dryer that don't have those little EnergyStar stickers on them you can because it's your life and your property. You paid for it with money you earned with the sweat of your brow and what the heck is America anyhow if a body can't live in the home they want furnished with the appliances they want?

Ah, silly you. You didn't reckon on the Democratic Party's desire to control every miniscule aspect of your life.

Let me introduce you to a little section of the Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade bill called the "Building Energy Performance Labeling Program". It's section 304 of the bill and it says, basically, that your house belongs to the state. See, the Federal Government really wants a country full of energy-efficient homes, so much so that the bill mandates that new homes be 30 percent more energy efficient than the current building code on the very day the law is signed. That efficiency goes up to 50 percent by 2014 and only goes higher from there, all the way to 2030. That, by the way, is not merely a target but a requirement of the law. New homes must reach those efficiency targets no matter what.

But what does that have to do with current homeowners like you? Well, I'm glad you asked. You're certainly not off the hook, no way, no how. Here's what the Democrats have planned for you. The program requires that states label their buildings so that we can all know how efficient every building (that includes residential and non-residential buildings) is and it requires that the information be made public.
While there is no penalty on not meeting these standards -- yet -- the legislation threatens states with losing a portion of their federal revenues if a certain percentage of homes and businesses do not meet the tougher standards.
The bill strong-arms the states like a couple mob heavies leaning on a witness in a Rico trial. In turn, the states are going to put the screws to you, so it gets the billions of dollars Washington is dangling in front of them. So while the Federal government won't directly punish you, it will provide the states with lots and lots of rectangular, green reasons to do so.
Also, the folks at AIP have looked at the "reimbursement" the feds are going to help you with. It will be capped at half of your upgrade costs. If you are very persistent and are a registered Democrat. (Just kidding about the registered Democrat thingee, I think.)

The worst part, as they note, is that this is only a tiny portion of what our Progressive government in Washington has in store for you.

Only a tiny portion.

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home