I Owe An Apology to My Fellow Skeptics -- Apparently I Underestimated How Stupid the California Legislature Can Be
There was a period of time -- now a decade ago at least -- when folks were actually willing to have debates on climate and I was invited to participate in a number of them. In several of these, fellow skeptics would try to mock alarmists by saying that cow farts are a big source of methane (a much stronger greenhouse gas than CO2) and thus alarmists were going to be regulating cow farts soon. On several time, I criticized my fellow skeptics, calling this both a conspiracy theory and a distraction from the real debate -- once someone says "cow farts" in a discussion, it is almost a lock that you will have a hard time getting back to serious science.
Well, I was wrong. I am sorry to all those skeptics I derided for pushing the cow fart meme. Because the California legislature did passed a law to regulate cow farts.
Well, sort of. In fact, even the California legislature is not really stupid enough to require that long vent hoses be hooked up to the rear ends of all the cows in the state. While you will hear this law derided as the cow fart legislation, it actually about cow poop -- specifically the collection of all the cow poop so it can be put into devices that contain and harvest the methane emissions from the poop.
What this is far more likely to be is not the cow fart or cow poop legislation, but the "send California's dairy business to other states" legislation.