Clean Energy

Despite Trump, Is the Clean Energy Future Inevitable?

The momentum away from fossil fuels and toward renewables is 'undeniable and irresistible' assert activists.

|

EarthWindTurbineMopicDreamstime
Mopic/Dreamstime

No matter who's running the government, America's "transition to a clean energy economy is irrevocably underway," the Natural Resources Defense Council asserted in its Accelerating into a Clean Energy Future report this week. Report co-author Ralph Cavanagh added, "The nationwide momentum for pollution-free energy is undeniable and irresistible because clean energy now costs less than dirty energy."

As if to confirm the Council's claim, the infotech giant Google announced this week by the end of next year, its global operations will be fueled 100 percent by electricity generated by renewable sources. ("The science tells us that tackling climate change is an urgent global priority," the company's press release explained.) This does not mean that Google gets its electricity directly from solar panels on the roofs of its data centers or from wind turbines churning away on its corporate campuses. The company basically makes purchasing commitments to renewable projects that offset the conventionally generated electricity that it gets from local utilities.

There is, of course, nothing wrong with a business legally adopting measures that it thinks are in the best interests of its customers and shareholders. If the company is on the wrong track, those stakeholders will let Google's executives know through their purchasing and investment choices.

But if clean energy really does cost less than dirty energy, then what is there to resist? In that case, surely the invisible hand of the marketplace will make the transition to a clean-energy economy irrevocable. So can we all put aside our worries about catastrophic climate change?

Not so fast. You see, policies are needed.

Google notes that during "the last six years, the cost of wind and solar came down 60 percent and 80 percent, respectively, proving that renewables are increasingly becoming the lowest cost option." Yet even as proponents insist that clean energy now outcompetes fossil fuels, they nevertheless want to enhance their irrevocablabilty with a little help from the government. As Google obliquely puts it, "We believe the private sector, in partnership with policy leaders, must take bold steps."

What might that "partnership" look like? Google doesn't say, but you can get a sense of what might be required by reading From Risk to Return, a new report from the Risky Business Project. This group is supported by the media mogul Michael Bloomberg, the Bush-era treasury secretary Henry Paulsen, and the hedge fund manager and prominent Democratic Party donor Thomas Steyer. Its report presents four pathways toward restructuring America's energy infrastructure, with the goal of cutting U.S. carbon dioxide emissions 80 percent by 2050.

While the paper does not favor any of those four pathways—renewables, nuclear, carbon capture, and a mix—it focuses mostly on the costs and benefits of the fourth, which reduces emissions via a combination of renewables, nuclear, carbon emissions captured from fossil fuels, and the transformation of transportation toward reliance on electricity, hydrogen, and biofuels. By 2050, the report projects, the extra expenditures for building out low-carbon energy production and consumption infrastructure would be more than offset by fuel costs. The authors argue that clean energy is unfortunately not yet ready to compete head-on with fossil fuels.

"The private sector alone cannot solve the climate change problem," the Risky Business report concludes. "We know from our collective business and investment experience that the private sector will take action at the necessary speed and scale only if it is given a clear and consistent policy and regulatory framework." What sort of policies do they think are necessary? First and more foremost, they want government to put a price on carbon emissions. From their point of view, this would level the energy playing field. In addition, they rightly want to eliminate tax incentives for fossil fuel extraction, end subsidized flood insurance in high-risk areas, and lower regulatory and financing barriers to clean energy projects. Also, they want companies to disclose material climate-related risks; presumably this would include risks related to capricious public policy.

Speaking of capricious public policy, what is the Trump administration likely to do with regard to energy policy—and, in particular, to renewable energy subsidies? As it happens, Congress passed legislation just last year that gave a three-year extension to the 30 percent tax credit for solar investment, then will ramp it down incrementally until it reaches a permanent 10 percent level in 2022. The 2.3 cents per kilowatt-hour wind power production credit remains through this year, and will subsequently begin dropping 20 percent each year through 2020. Republicans voted for these subsidies in exchange for Democratic votes in favor of lifting the 40-year ban on exports of crude oil produced in the U.S. Since these subsidies are already scheduled for a phase-out, it seems unlikely that the Trump administration will regard going after them as a high priority.

What about Ralph Cavanagh's claim that clean energy now costs less than dirty energy? Last year, the investment bank Lazard calculated that the levelized unsubsidized cost of utility-scale solar photovoltaic electricity—levelized means capital, fuel, and operation and maintenance are all taken into account—would range between $58 and $70 per megawatt-hour. For on-shore wind, it's $32 to $77. The cost of cheapest fossil fuel competitor, natural gas combined cycle generation, ranged between $52 and $78 per megawatt-hour. If Lazard is right, the clean energy transition does look irresistible. Who would want to resist cheaper energy?

On the other hand, the Energy Information Administration's somewhat higher estimates do not find that unsubsidized wind and solar will become cost competitive with cheap natural gas by 2022. Other research points out that increasing dependence on renewable energy means building back-up generation that can take over when clouds obscure the sun or wind dies down.

In any case, federal energy policy is not the only game in town. As the Natural Resources Defense Council report observes, one-fifth of Americans live in states that currently plan to get at least 50 percent of their energy from renewable sources by around 2030. It will be interesting to see how such states fare economically against states without such mandates.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

375 responses to “Despite Trump, Is the Clean Energy Future Inevitable?

  1. “The nationwide momentum for pollution-free energy is undeniable and irresistible because clean energy now costs less than dirty energy.”

    Would that hold true if we stopped subsidizing it?

    1. Exactly. Nothing built on subsidies is sustainable, much less inevitable.

      1. Tell that to Big Sugar or Big Ethanol.

        1. Don’ t forget Big Cheese !

          Is Trump going to cut the cheese in his deregulation frenzy ?

          1. Goddammit. I am just getting over the flu and still have congestion. That juvenile little joke just caused me to shoot both coffee and a huge amount of snot out o fmy nose. You know the kind I mean, a long green snake.

            Dammit.

            1. You should have been drinking vodka instead. That would have helped kill the germs.

          2. Actually, Trump intends to reduce cheese consumption as a means of decreasing methane emissions.

          3. When is Big Pot gonna show up? I’ve been ready!

        2. You forget that Big Sugar actually provides a steady supply of sugar, and Big Ethanol seems to provide a steady supply of engine-destroying fuel. They may be leeches, but they do offer something in exchange.

          Can’t say the same for Big Green Energy.

          1. Big Green does provide a steady stream of cronies with their hands out (and chopped up birds too, but that’s another story).

            1. That reminds me, we need to open a green energy restaurant – windmills followed by a solar plant and a dining room on the end. They get chopped by the mills, cooked by the solar and land on the tables. Fully automated!

    2. If we stopped subsidizing everything, including pipelines and shipping costs, the last analysis I did says we’d wind up burning mostly coal and some fuel oil for base load with natural gas for peaking. This assumes no major changes to insurance schemes.

      1. Speaking of coal, what time period was it first used as fuel in the west?

        1. Oooh, Grecian times.

          The earliest reference to the use of coal in metalworking is found in the geological treatise On stones (Lap. 16) by the Greek scientist Theophrastus (c. 371?287 BC):

        2. As a material, coal is actually pretty fascinating stuff. And the US is basically the Saudi Arabia of coal given our prehistory and level of deposits.

      2. What are you, some type of newfangled woodchipper?

    3. Obviously, no. Once again the environazis show that reality is not their forte.

      1. You must have voted for Trump.

        1. Hey, we were offered a choice between a felonious, compulsively untruthful shrew with huge entitlement issues, and a clown.

    4. nationwide momentum for pollution-free energy

      There’s “nationwide momentum” for a nonexistent thing? There is no such thing as “pollution-free” energy generation. Even just looking at “traditional” pollution (harmful substances in the air, ground, and water), solar panel and wind turbine manufacturing and maintenance are not pollution-free.

      1. Same for geothermal and hydroelectric generation, but the enviro-socialists act like those don’t exist.

        1. It’s too bad we can’t harness the Yellowstone supervolcano for stable energy.

        2. There was a time, back in the ’70’s, when they wouldn’t shut up about what a shame it was the the U.S. Didn’t use more hydroelectric power. Them Carter got elected, and started talking about actually building some.

          Somehow, no place where a hydroelectric plant was at all feasable was any good, so far as the environmentalists were concerned.

          They talked about geo-thermal right up to the day somebody proposed to actually build some in Hawaii.

          They are never in favor of any form of power generation that might actually be practical.

      2. The voices in their collective heads say there is momentum. Everyone they know and talk to says there is momentum. Ergo, momentum.

        1. ManBearPig – Trey and Matt need to bring him back

      3. I doubt that solar and wind make enough energy to cover their own manufacture(and recycling),while still providing energy for end use. IMO,if we really want clean energy **in any practical manner**,we have to go nuclear.
        (and without cutting back our lifestyles)

        When a US solar or wind company uses their own products to make and recycle their products,and sustains that,then perhaps I’ll start believing. That should include the mining and refining of ores into metal and silicon.

        1. And that parenthetical aside – (and without cutting back our lifestyles) – explans so much about the enviro’s determination to move society to energy sources that won’t really work. They deeply believe that we should reduce our lifestyles. THEIR lifestyles are, of course, just fine.

          Guillotine bait.

    5. Indeed not. Also, if we’re talking about dirty energy I submit that this is pretty dirty (and ugly):

      http://www.airphotona.com/img?i=430

      1. After WWIII, or once we regain control of the planet of the apes, frontiersmen will be able to cut those down and build steel log cabins out of them… use the copper wire to make fences to keep the livestock penned in.

        1. Planet of the ManBearPigs, you mean.

    6. Doesn’t matter whether “green” technology needs subsidies or not. To the left, subsidies are sacrosanct. Their principles are so well rooted that they’ll go to the wall insisting that other people’s money be put where their mouth is. Rather weird, but everything that comes out of left field is.

  2. “The private sector alone cannot solve the climate change problem,” the Risky Business report concludes. “We know from our collective business and investment experience that the private sector will take action at the necessary speed and scale only if it is given a clear and consistent policy and regulatory framework.”

    So, yeah. Totally market driven.

    1. A: It cannot solve a problem that does not exist. So that much is True.

      B: the second part says “they only run away from the sane stance when we whip them hard enough!”

    2. How did anybody ever buy or sell anything before government was invented and regulations were enforced? Can you imagine the insanity?

      1. I don’t have the kind of education required to determine the value of a good or service without a model of price controls guiding me.

      2. I confess, I do like standardized currencies as a medium of exchange. Even if it was just taking existing commodies and creating consistant weighted nuggets.

      3. Before being invented by big government, nothing existed. Get an education, bagger!

        1. But who invented Big Government? It’s like the Anvil problem from Dwarf Fortress.

          1. Big Government is the Alpha and the Omega. Big Government is, and was, and will be.

            1. It is the progressive’s sufficiency and strength, his/her/xhes shepherd that makes him/her/xhe lie down in green pastures, etc.

          2. The Romans and their bread and circuses?

            The Egyptians and their grain stores?

    3. Markets are driven by central planners. Duh. Everyone knows that nothing happens in the economy without the government making it happen. So when the government tells the market what to do, then it is still market driven.

      1. Before central planners, humans just sat around wondering what to do. Then one day, TOP.MEN appeared and BAM! Stone tools, the wheel, fire, industrial revolution!

        1. The TOP MEN back then must have been of much better quality than the TOP XEM of today or the species would have never even discovered fire.

    4. Perhaps we could install some wind turbines at the cost of a few hundred thou each to generate some ‘lectricity. Wind turbines are green, right?

      1. Most of the ones I’ve seen are white, and therefore racist.

          1. Wanna get high?

      2. And think of all the squab produced from those squab choppers.

        End of starvation!

      3. Plus free fowl propeller kill! WIN/WIN!

      4. Gotta love the sight pollution too. The Gorge used to be a beautiful place to watch a concert, before the turbines went up.

          1. When’s the last time he had a hit?

  3. Hey speaking of the transition to ‘clean energy’, I heard a story on NPR last night that was a bit thin on details, but heavy on social justice themes– about a bunch of coal miners out of work after their mining company went bankrupt, about some legal fight to make sure they keep their health benefits. These benefits were “promised” to them by the Union and the Federal government back in the 40s, and apparently this “promise” was predicated on this specific company(s) being in business and making money in perpetuity, forever and ever, amen.

    Who the fuck would make such a promise?

    1. The federal government. It was actually legislated into existance.

      1. One sort of gets the idea that government actors don’t ever think things through.

        1. intentions, results, something something.

          1. And the children! Don’t forget the children!

      2. Not to mention every state and local government.

    2. about a bunch of coal miners out of work after their mining company went bankrupt, about some legal fight to make sure they keep their health benefits.

      The NPR ‘mining layoffs’ story I heard last night was, ironically, about Minnesota’s Iron Range. The whole piece invoked a distinct ‘What would Hank Rearden do?’ sensibility.

    3. They made some promises about Social Security too, heh, heh.

      1. At least social security doesn’t require Ralph’s Lanes bowling alley to stay in business until the year 3000. Especially when the government decides in 2022 that Ralph’s Lanes contributes to global warming and regulates it out of existence.

        1. Social security requires somebody to stay in business, so the employees can keep putting money in the “trust fund” to pay us retirees. Because Congress done spent all the money we put in the “trust fund.”

    4. Sounds like a multi employer insurance plan. Reason ran an article about multi employer plans (specifically multi employer pension plans), “Labor’s Last Stand”. They were codified in the Labor Management Relations (Taft-Hartley) Act of 1947.

      Basically, a union negotiates a contract with all of the employers of its members so that the employers would pay into a single fund which would cover the cost of a benefit like insurance or pension for all of the union members. When union members switched jobs, they’d get to keep their benefits (which came from the union). As new companies would form, they’d join in the scheme and as companies went under, the surviving companies would assume the costs of the companies that failed. At an advantage to the employers is that they didn’t have to disclose their complete liabilities until the FASB change their rules in 2010 when all hell broke loose.

      So I think the plan NPR was talking about involved one of these multi employer plans and all of the other companies in the plan have gone under except for this one company which is now on the hook for all of union members’ health insurance.

      Read the Reason article? these plans are ticking time bombs and about ? of private pension plans in terms of value are these multi employer plans.

      1. In short, they took a great idea to consolidate and distribute liability that benefited everyone involved, however, they did so by conspiring with the government. Why did they conspire is the question. The answer is simple. Regulation. They would, from my understanding, be otherwise unable to combine their standing liabilities because of legal issues, especially across state lines. So government benevolently stepped in to make a problem worse that was only created by government to begin with.

  4. “Other research points out that increasing dependence on renewable energy means building back-up generation that can take over when clouds obscure the sun or wind dies down.”

    There is also the fact that often the places where the sun shines best or the wind blows best to maximize power generation are not the same places where most of the electricity demands are.

    That means additional expense for new transmission lines that would not be needed for fossil fuel or nuclear plants that can be built anywhere.

    1. Other research points out that increasing dependence on renewable energy means building back-up generation that can take over when clouds obscure the sun or wind dies down.”

      And building redundant sources of power to replace the single and reliable source we have now is going to come without any cost at all. The Green Energy Fairy will take care of that I guess.

    2. Look, if we just cut down every tree in the world and put up a solar panel or wind turbine, we can almost meet all demands for energy if we just go back to the living standards of the 1800s. Green energy wins!

      1. +1 Consumption

    3. I was under the impression that nuclear plants are also now built away from large population centers.

      Anecdotally, we had a company trying to build one in my county a few years ago. It happens to be the largest/most sparsely populated county in my state, and a mere 50 miles from a major population center.

      1. Nuclear power plants are often built near sources of water like rivers, lakes, oceans, etc., so that the water can act as a large heatsink.

        1. then why do they build those large cooling towers?

          1. because it would be detrimental to the wildlife population if they dumped 200 degree water back into the lake.

          2. The cooling towers consume huge amounts of water. They work by evaporation.

            -jcr

    4. “That means additional expense for new transmission lines that would not be needed for fossil fuel or nuclear plants that can be built anywhere.”

      You are perversely assuming that people would for some reason not move to where the electricity is. And that technical innovations may replace the need for transmission lines. Don’t underestimate the ingenuity of man or his ability to adapt to new and difficult circumstances.

      1. It is amazing how theoretical innovation can justify any regulatory cost but existing innovation never justifies any limits on regulatory expansion.

        1. “It is amazing how theoretical innovation…”

          They teach you that on your first day at MBA school.

      2. “Don’t underestimate the ingenuity of man or his ability to adapt to new and difficult circumstances.”

        The “difficult circumstances” in question are being artificially created by government.

        1. “The “difficult circumstances” in question are being artificially created by government.”

          Amazingly, people have been known to adapt to difficult circumstances even when they are artificially created by government.

          1. Why force them to?

            1. I wouldn’t force anyone. I celebrate free choice. Adapt or die.

              1. Adapt or die

                How about “leave me the fuck alone”? Why is that choice never on offer with you?

                1. Mother nature has other plans for you.

                  1. The government is not mother nature.

                  2. Stupid man arrives, makes stupid statements.

                    1. Not you, k; aimed at our most regular obscurantist.

              2. “Free choice” as proscribed by Google, apparently.

          2. Artificial circumstances created by government are always unnecessary circumstances.

            The only adaption needed is to undo the government action that created them.

          3. government is supposed to adapt to people,not people adapt to government. government is only supposed to provide law and order,not tell us how we must live. At least in America,that’s how it’s supposed to work.

      3. In that case they’d have access to cheap, clean energy and no access to cheap, clean water.

        1. “no access to cheap, clean water.”

          In that case, they’d be smart to use water with care, even at the risk of offending Libertarian sensibilities.

      4. “Don’t underestimate the ingenuity of man or his ability to adapt to new and difficult circumstances.”

        Glad to see you agree with us that the government doesn’t need to do anything about this “problem”. Good to have you aboard.

        1. The inferred addendum was left out of the statement. The last part of the sentence should have been,”in spite of all attempts by central planners to show otherwise.”

    5. In theory, this could be solved with decentralized generation and storage. I won’t call out any specific technology because that way lies madness. But it’s really the best option.

  5. If Lazard is right, the clean energy transition does look irresistible. Who would want to resist cheaper energy?

    People who want reliable energy for one. And the conclusion states ,

    We find that Alternative Energy technologies are complementary to conventional generation
    technologies, and believe that their use will be increasingly prevalent for a variety of reasons, including RPS requirements,carbon regulations, continually improving economics as underlying technologies improve and production volumes increase, and government subsidies in certain regions.

    CARBON REGULATIONS. Yes, if you assume that governments in the name of the AGW cult are going to make fossil fuels more expensive than the market demands, renewable energy looks great. They are the way to be a little less poorer than governments want to make us. Yeah well fuck that. I want my cheap energy and decent standard of living.

    1. Considering that they have utterly failed to accurately measure and predict the sensitivity of the Earth’s temperature to carbon concentrations, how can they impose carbon regulations/taxes in a rational way?

      1. FEELZ, kbolino. They’ll be allocated by what FEELZ right.

      2. Reasons.

        1. And consensus.

    2. “People who want reliable energy for one. ”

      Americans are so in thrall to the reliability of the Saudi Princes that they blow a trillion $US yearly on ensuring the oil supply.

      1. We don’t import any significant amount of oil anymore. its called fracking dude. It was in all of the papers.

        And no one burns oil for electricity.

        1. Let him go, he’s on a roll.

        2. We actually never imported much ME oil after the 1970s. After the oil shocks, all of the US refineries I can think of import a much heavier grade of oil than what comes out of Saudi Arabia. Places like Pascagoula, Baytown, and Lake Charles are bringing in the heaviest crudes they can*. If they need some sweeter crude, they can pump in domestic stuff, but their business model is to buy the sourest crude (cheapest raw material) and refine it to whatever is most popular. Most of our domestic oil (as of 10 years ago) gets shipped into the Caribbean and refined there.

          *The smaller refineries on the East and West Coast may be different, but something a huge percentage of our imports are from Canada and Mexico.

          1. “We actually never imported much ME oil after the 1970s.”

            What’s important is that the Saudi oil was bought with $US. What’s also important is that the US taxpayers will eventually be called upon to pay those costs for protecting the Saudi princes. In a global market, where the oil is first shipped, is not so important.

            1. In a global market, where the oil is first shipped, is not so important

              .

              Whoa, look at those goalposts move. Just hold the football still, Lucy.

              1. “Whoa, look at those goalposts move. Just hold the football still, Lucy.”

                Global warming, global economy, they’ve been there a while. You just can see the forest for the goalposts.

            2. “What’s also important is that the US taxpayers will eventually be called upon to pay those costs for protecting the Saudi princes.”

              Cite missing, oh cite-less one.

          2. According to the US EIA, in 2015, Saudi Arabia is our #2 supplier at 11% of imports. Canada is at #1 with 40% and Venezuela is at #3 with 9%. Mexico comes in at #4 with 8%.

            Imported oil makes up only 24% of US petroleum consumption, again, according to the EIA.

            1. Makes the whole deal even more incongruous, don’t you think?

              1. Makes your statements no less true, wouldn’t you say?

        3. “We don’t import any significant amount of oil anymore. ”

          That hasn’t stopped the subsidies. Americans are so reliable that way.

          1. What subsidies?

            1. Carter doctrine. Turning the Persian gulf into an American lake. Costs lots of money, thanks to tax payers.

              1. Okay. We don’t need to do that anymore. Drill baby drill. That is why fracking is the greatest thing to happen to this country in a very long while.

          2. So we’re agreed. Stop subsidizing SA.

            1. “So we’re agreed. ”

              I’m not so sure. You really want the world’s oil companies to start shelling out to secure their supply lines?

              1. You think ME countries aren’t going to protect their only revenue source?

                1. “You think ME countries aren’t going to protect their only revenue source?”

                  They are protected already by American taxpayers.

                  1. One of the good things about Donald Trump is that he’s likely to negotiate deals with ME despots, Euroweenies, and Pac Rim industrial powerhouse countries to make them pick up the tab for their defense instead of US taxpayers. I’d prefer the US to just withdraw its military, but getting others to pay for services rendered would be a start.

                    1. That’s quite a gravy train to derail.

                    2. “That’s quite a gravy train to derail.”

                      That’s quite a meaningless statement.

                    3. You’re right. Sounds hard to fix what’s broken. We should all just invest in inferior technology!

    3. So a full 3/4 of the market-driven inevitability is government enforcement. I feel more free already. What a brave new world.

      1. Talk to me when the efficiencies of your beloved infrastructure reach 70%.

  6. America’s “transition to a clean energy economy is irrevocably underway,” the Natural Resources Defense Council asserted in its Accelerating into a Clean Energy Future report this week

    Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t think the person from the National Resources Defense Council (an arrogant title) understands what the adverb “irrevocably” implies. Maybe he or she meant to say “inexorably”, because irrevocably implies something was previously ordained which cannot be undone.

    By the way, I don’t know what application or process runs in the background in this webpage but it slows down every browser I tried on my PC and even in my Samsung 7 which is a fairly robust device. The lag is just so annoying.

    1. Ghostery is your friend.

      1. Or Adblock, which also handles a lot of javascript annoyances.

  7. Words green-activists misuse constantly =

    “Inevitable”
    “Irreversible”
    “Irrevocably”
    “Catastrophic”
    “Undeniable”
    “Consensus”

    1. “Science”

      1. I loled.

      2. isn’t there consensus on global warming? http://www.skepticalscience.co…..ediate.htm

        or maybe that’s not what you mean

        1. Show me where “obtain consensus” exists in the scientific method.

          1. It’s right after the step where you make sure your conclusion feels right.

          2. it’s not that obtaining consensus is a prerequisite in itself for validating a certain theory, it’s just that if there is a lot of consensus there’s a better reason that said theory *should be* validated, or atleast that it’s more likely to be true. take the vast amount of papers and opinions of scientists who find that mary j is not a harmful substance when compared to alcohol

            1. What is or isn’t likely to be true (if you accept empiricism and its child science as epistemology) is what can be shown, repeatedly, through experimentation. The universe does not operate by consensus.

              1. Most politicians disagree.

                1. Most politicians disagree.

                  The first lesson of economics is scarcity: there is never enough of anything to fully satisfy all those who want it. The first lesson of politics is to disregard the first lesson of economics.

                  ? Thomas Sowell

                  1. A politician’s universe consists entirely of opinions. Facts, economic facts in particular, play a very minor role.

                    Consider the number of “Never Trumpers” who now profess complete confidence in a man whom they know to be even more ignorant of economics than his two predecessors. Steve Moore, who founded the Club for Growth, now attacks free trade!!! Not only does power corrupt leaders, it corrupts followers even more.

                2. ISWYDT

            2. See my link below regarding this supposed “consensus”, regardless of the fact that science isn’t done by consensus. In addition, the models based on the man made CO2 hypothesis have failed miserably, falsifying the hypothesis.

              1. In addition, the models based on the man made CO2 hypothesis have failed miserably, falsifying the hypothesis.

                Not after we adjust them, pleb.

              2. In addition, the models based on the man made CO2 hypothesis have failed miserably, falsifying the hypothesis.

                Or the models are shit. If your predictions are based on some bad assumptions, the predictions fail. But that doesn’t mean that all of the assumptions or hypotheses are wrong.

            3. There’s nothing wrong with consensus when deciding to accept an untestable theory. But when you’re going to use a regulatory hammer to flatten people into little pancakes, I’m not sure scientific consensus is good enough.

              1. Yeah, that’s the real problem. Whatever the validity of the scientific theories, there is a lot more you need to consider when making policy. Little things like people’s rights and whether a policy has any chance of achieving its stated goals.

          3. Consensus is in deed not part of the scientific method. But for the vast majority of people, a consensus among scientists in the relevant field is the only way available to judge the validity of a theory. Of course, that is no guarantee of it being correct. There are lots of historical examples of wrong scientific consensuses. But for the most part, consensus is the right way to judge which theories are most likely correct.

            It seems to me (though I am open to being proven wrong) that the consensus on the fact that observable warming is happening is pretty valid, but that there is much less consensus (and much more reason to doubt) when it comes to specific predictions for the future than we are led to believe.

        2. The claims of consensus are commonly made in “Bait & Switch”/Motte-Bailey fashion

          where they’ll point to the “97% agree” meta-studies…

          (which only agree that 1)there’s a MECHANIC by which ‘more of x greenhouse gasses contribute to a warming effect’…. but DO NOT agree on 2) how much is attributable to human actions …. and definitely definitely DO NOT agree on 3) whether any of said warming is actually leading to any “catastrophic” outcomes, or will even increase more-rapidly in the future than it has in the past)

          …. but claim that the “agreement” is about the latter “catastrophic” claims.

          They do the same thing with anyone who suggest that the catastrophic assumptions have no support = accuse them of “denying” that the MECHANIC even exists.

          So if you’re a “Warmist” who thinks that the warming isn’t necessarily dangerous, you’re the same as a denier.

          Its basically intellectual dishonesty all the way down.

          1. do you have a paper/study or anything you can link to? genuinely curious – my guess would be that there is agreement on points 2 and 3, but that there is disagreement about the scale of them and not just about the basic validity of them – i.e. ‘temperatures would’ve risen 2C by 2080’ all the way to ‘earth is basically venus in 10 years’

            1. my guess would be that there is agreement on points 2 and 3,

              I don’t think your “guess” is relevant.

              1. which is why i asked for a link to see whether my ‘guess’ is wrong or not

                1. also- for clarity … in those 3 points, they should be understood as=


                  1) people agree that climate change is real, and that human activity contributes to it

                  2) the degree/amount that human activity affects climate change, however, is unknown and poorly sourced – science varies widely and most models assuming the greatest-human-effects have been repeatedly shown to be false

                  3) the actual number of people who assume catastrophic outcomes in any predictable amount of time is in fact tiny = and not anything remotely near “90+%”

                  the point is that claims about consensus on the first point are routinely used to claim consensus on the last point.

            2. If you want to read the original meta-study that generated the bullshit “97%” claim which has been widely misconstrued…. Oreskes was the first.

              there’s another one that (shocker) came up with the same number by similar means.

              Its the same bullshit M.O. that the “campus rape culture” advocates used to get to their “1-in-5 women are raped!”-claims. = get one shitty-methodology-study conducted by non-scientists (oreskes is a ‘historian’), then when their headline-number comes under attack – repeat same shitty methodology and produce a ‘similar’ figure, thus saving the reputation of the first horribly-misconstrued study.

              The academic left has learned that idiot, innumerate journalists will repeat (and exaggerate) any claims made by a “Study”, regardless of how shoddy and baseless it is. They generate these sorts of things with their PR campaign in mind. Its Anti-Science because it tries to use their claim of “popular consensus” to repress any actual dissemination of specific information that contradicts their general claims.

              1. I think its also important to distinguish between 2 things =

                1 – there is no ‘consensus’ about anything other than the theory of the mechanic of climate-change.

                2 – even if there were growing ‘consensus’ that “Climate Change is all about Human Activity and Unless We Stop We’re going to Destroy The Earth Soon”….

                it still means nothing from a scientific point of view. those are just opinions which don’t actually reflect any solid base of research that allows anyone to draw those conclusions.

                There is no “proof” in the raw data – which is why they run these (@#*)$@ opinion studies in the first place. They don’t care about the “science”. .

                All that any “consensus of stated opinion” reflects is that the popular hysteria of the subject has made any public-skepticism dangerous for people

                And – unsurprisingly – the same people who have made themselves famous popularizing a false consensus? Also are deeply involved in attempting to destroy any threat to that perceived consensus

        3. 97% of scientific papers in 1816 that discussed propagation of light through space discussed an aether that must be present because everyone knows waves must have a medium through which to propagate. They had fancy models and everything. To give a more contemporary example, 99% of scientists who study galaxy formation and life cycles believe that dark matter must exist because the GR model works so well at all of the other scales we’ve tested it at, and that there was already a term in the equation for it, and the CMBR measurements agree with it. However, it has never been directly observed. I know of at least 3 other theories of gravity that claim to deliver all of the same results as GR at the scales we have direct experiments for, as well as those galaxy level scales without depending on the universe being made up of 63% matter that doesn’t interact like all the observable matter in the universe does. I am not qualified to make the determination, but I also am not in a hurry to shut that 1% down as “deniers”. That’s not how science works.

          1. the difference there, i’d argue, is that climate change ‘symptoms’ (temperature, sea level etc) are much more observable and thus reliable than dark matter or gravitational fields in scientific tests. we know most of what there is about heat and water and the ice-caps – we’re not suddenly going to be thrown a curveball whereby it seems that ice doesn’t melt as quickly as we thought.

            but in quantum mechanics and dark matter stuff (i only what CBS spacetime so don’t quote me on this) there’s always the possibility that suddenly an atom isn’t where it’s supposed to be, or the wave function is acting weirdly, and so there is more scope for other theories to explain quantum mechanics and dark matter.

            1. It also remains an open question as to whether global average temperature (not to mention, other metrics) is a symptom, a cause, or part of a complex network of symptoms and causes including feedback loops.

              1. point taken

            2. The issue is that what is observable does not match the predictions and models that were based on the man made CO2 hypothesis. No one disputes that the climate changes, the earth has gone through warming and cooling cycles for millenia. What is in dispute is whether the current warming since the end of the Little Ice Age is another natural cycle or is man made. So far there is no definitive evidence that it is man made.

            3. Not related to dark matter, but I think maybe you’re referring to the uncertainty principle? Or maybe the double slit experiment? Or both?

              1. double slit indeed! boggles the mind – there was also another experiment done afterwards involving a special crystal that suggested atoms could change their past actions

                1. I think the double slit experiment proves that point. Maybe it was a follow up. But if you measure the photons after they already passed through the slit, they appear to actually change their own state in the past.

                  Yes, it’s mind boggling that merely measuring photons affects their state, wave or particle. What’s perhaps even more mind blowing is entanglement.

                  1. i quite liked the theories that came out of that – recall one that suggested the universal exists only when we as individuals observe it, as if its playing peek a boo

                    1. Entanglement makes me want to believe, like some are now suggesting, that we live in a gigantic ultra sophisticated simulation and that space time is no more real than in a video game.

            4. we’re not suddenly going to be thrown a curveball whereby it seems that ice doesn’t melt as quickly as we thought.

              You should check out the predictions for the Antarctic Sea Ice over the various IPCC reports before you say things like that. Heat transfer across and between various layers of fluids with different compositions (like say, the atmosphere/bathysphere boundary, thermoclines in salt water, and even in different slices of the atmosphere) is so complex to simulate that they are just now able to start modelling cloud formation. We have better simulations of galaxy formations a million years in the future than we do cloud formation a million minutes from now.

            5. climate change ‘symptoms’ (temperature, sea level etc) are much more observable

              That those changes in temperature data are due to the proposed theory, rather than some other process, is largely speculative. The scale at which global-climate functions is not possible to replicate for traditional forms of experimentation. the models they use to try and imitate climate processes have been shown to be less than useless – they tend to be not just “wrong”, but wildly so.

        4. isn’t there consensus on global warming?

          I don’t see any references in your cite to Natural Gas.

          Everybody from environmentalists, to physicists, economists, energy investors, policy makers, internet and media wonks, planners, builders and engineers at virtually every level down to gas station attendants… in Russia, China, India, the U.S. and everywhere in between acknowledge that Natural Gas will, relatively single-handedly, do more to reduce emissions and kill ‘dirty coal’ than any other single move or measure undertaken or conceived.

          If you want to talk real science, we can talk real science. Otherwise, my consensus can beat up your consensus.

          1. yeah natural gas is better than coal, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t contribute atleast somewhat to rising temperatures

            1. It all contributes to rising temperatures. Always. That’s how the whole fusion waterwheel that is our biosphere/solar system works. That’s where the coal, oil, and natural gas came from. Even if we go 100% solar/wind, that’s where we end up. The whole idea is how wide can you make the evolutionary bottleneck for how long? Natural Gas has firmly established that it can make it wider than green energy can and longer than coal and even that is based on the assumed fact that the globe warming is inevitable and an intrinsic bad.

              The only way wind and/or solar win out is if we suddenly found ourselves on a planet closer to the sun, lacking any/all fossil fuels. Even then, if we ship all of humanity off to another planet and discover it has fuel buried underneath the surface, unless the wind is shredding equipment and the sun is vaporizing matter, the most sensible and sustainable thing to do is to dig it up and burn it rather than shipping fuel to/from Earth.

              The fact that the ‘science’ has been able, for so long, to point to a greenhouse and say, “See? Warm. QED.” for so long has seriously corroded people’s thinking on the subject.

        5. Skeptics are skeptical about everything but CAGW. They can’t seem to recognize how quickly they fall into the habits of the deeply religious people they constantly belittle.

        6. I do so love when people bring that up. No consensus

          A short summary:

          The Cook paper had 7 levels of endorsement of AGW (3 levels of endorsement either explicitly or implicitly, 1 level with no position, and 3 levels of rejection either explicitly or implicitly.) Out of 11,944 papers, only 3,896 actually endorse humans as the cause of AGW (and of those only 64 explicitly state that humans are the primary cause of recent global warming).

          Now, I don’t know about you, but when I divide 3,896 by 11,944 I get 32.6%, which is a damn sight far off of near unanimousness.

      3. YES. That poor, poor word.

    2. Who are “policy makers”?

      And I don’t think they understand what “private sector” means.

  8. I most look forward to fusion. Please just make it work so that we can watch the greenies shit their pants over it.

    1. I wish. And I don’t mean about the ‘make it work’ part. Fusion or some nuclear mixture will work and greenies will either adopt it and shove their previously-opposed stance down the memory hole or adamantly oppose some requisite or derivative (real or imagined) of it.

      Too much local (on a Solar System level) nuclear fusion means more people converting oxygen to CO2, therefore population boom, therefore inverse Oxygen Catastrophe. You might laugh but there are people on ‘enlightened’ forums talking like this already. And while they aren’t necessarily being taken seriously, the forums are generally too devoted to the cause to mock them and/or will attack people mocking them morally and/or for their ‘denialism’.

      1. They have to oppose it, and they will. For the dumbest reasons you can imagine. Like the Malthusian reason you just mentioned.

      2. mad.casual, there were some articles a few weeks back shared about the links regarding space colonies and the amount of plants needed to keep people breathing. The amount of green needed to feed a person produces more oxygen than that person can metabolize. the agriculture needed to feed the people would more than counteract the people respirating.

        1. Formally educated as a biochemist, I’m well aware of the fact UCS. The lesser problem is that people from believing we can global warm ourselves into a polar vortex, or whatever, that destroys all life on the planet. The greater problem, IMO, is that there are educated people who won’t correct them or who will deride people for correcting them in service to The Cause.

        2. In pretty much anything but a coffin or a phone booth or on any planet even remotely like Earth, CO2 scrubbing is far more important than oxygen production.

    2. they would claim that it’s “not renewable” and that we would eventually run out of fusion fuel,or that making the fusion fuel was in itself “polluting”.

  9. “The nationwide momentum for pollution-free energy is undeniable and irresistible because clean energy now costs less than dirty energy.”

    I highly doubt they will be quoting this in their next fund raising letter. It will be more like “Stop Trump and the Republicans from raping Mother Earth at the behest of Exxon and the Koch Brothers.”

  10. The watermelon greens don’t care about affordable energy. All they care about is controlling other people.

    If a big breakthrough in nuclear fusion that enabled virtually limitless very cheap power happened tomorrow, the watermelon greenies would immediately start complaining that the cheap power would make the production of goods too cheap and encourage more consumption, more suburban sprawl, etc,. etc. all of which would be more rape of Gaia in their eyes.

    1. We don’t even need fusion. We have a perfectly acceptable and usable, fairly low-polluting method of energy generation right now called fission. Just because a plant shut down in Japan after a fucking tsunami-quake hit it doesn’t mean we should act like fission ceased to be a viable way to generate energy.

      1. “Need” has nothing to do with our support of fusion.

        Fusion is just fun.

        1. True enough, but in terms of what is on the table right now, everybody who thinks the planet is getting warmer from greenhouse gases should be pushing nuclear fission, hard.

          1. True enough, but in terms of what is on the table right now, everybody who thinks the planet is getting warmer from greenhouse gases should be pushing nuclear fission holding their breath, hard.

            FTFY.

      2. Moreover, Fukushima was:

        – Actually pretty minor
        – Totally preventable (not the quake/tsunami, but the damage it did to the plant)
        – Not representative of most other nuclear plants and potential incidents

        1. Plus it was yet another instance of there being more panic than damage. Everyone remembers the spectre of Chernobyl, but everyone ignores that it was caused by socialism and by manually disabling every safety system even that horrible excuse for a reactor had.

          1. I find it laughable that Germany is shutting down its plants because of Fukushima. Who can forget all those tsunamis that strike the North Sea (never mind inland Germany) and all those earthquakes that strike Northwestern Europe.

            1. It feelz good.

            2. Didn’t they stop doing that after they figured out using solar in Northern Europe wasn’t going to work very well?

              1. They didn’t turn them back on and have been burning lignite for power.

                1. And, not to be deterred by Germany’s shining example, it looks like France is jumping on the anti-nuclear bandwagon as well. I wonder what it will be like in Western Europe 20 years from now when they are spending half of their paychecks on energy?

                  1. It’s a race to see what symptom of progressivism kills Europe first – econuttery, multiculturalism or one of the other isms.

                    1. “It’s a race to see what symptom of progressivism kills Europe first – econuttery, multiculturalism or one of the other isms”

                      All of the above.

                  2. Doesn’t France get something like 90% of its energy from nuke plants? That’s gonna be, uh, a fascinating transition.

                2. They didn’t turn them back on and have been burning lignite for power.

                  I heard about this. I feel bad for any Germans who oppose their stupid energy policies, but have nothing but schadenfreude for the rest.

              2. It’s not very sunny in Germany during the winter. Looks like lots of windmills are going up.

                1. What I wonder about windmills and winter is “How much energy does it take to de-ice the windmills and keep the snow off? Is it more than they can generate?”

                  1. And the issue for those offshore windmills is how much is the required maintenance for them being constantly exposed to corrosive salt water and air going to cost?

                  2. Also, for every square foot of sunshine intercepted by a solar panel, there’s one less square foot for vegetation that converts atmospheric CO2 to O2.

                    The sunshine can either be used for photovoltaic electricity generation or for photosynthesis, but not both.

            3. Don’t worry, once they’ve been absorbed into the Caliphate, there will be a lot of interest in nuclear reactors by the German government.

            4. They were afraid Radiohead would boycott them.

        2. “was”

          It’s still there leaking radioactive isotopes into the ocean.

          1. And if it keeps doing that for another 5 million years*, the radiation levels of the Pacific ocean might get high enough to be a couple orders of magnitude away from being harmful.

            * = Except all the radiocative isotopes will have long decayed by then

            1. “And if it keeps doing that for another 5 million years*”

              You don’t appear to be too optimistic about the chances of sealing those leaks any time soon.

              1. You don’t appear to be too serious about making substantive arguments.

                1. Arguing Fukushima was a minor accident because of what will not happen in 5 million years, took my motivation for serious argumentation clean away.

                  1. The tongue-in-cheek point I made is that the radioactivity being released is not now and never will be in such a concentration as to be harmful.

                    “It’s leaking!” doesn’t disprove that it was a minor incident. Leaking != catastrophe.

                    1. Note that I am talking about “outside the immediate vicinity of the plant”; the radiation levels at the reactor itself will eventually subside but might still be fatal. However, they dissipate rapidly due to the inverse-square law (which doesn’t even account for the fact that the isotopes are a lot heavier than water and mostly fall to the bottom).

                    2. You don’t appear to be too serious about making substantive arguments.

                      Don’t feed the trolls! Seriously, if one follows his name link to his website, one finds that the only person who comments on the screeds of mtrueman is (quelle surprise) Kizone Kaprow.

                    3. 3 meltdowns in one day is not a minor incident. Never is a long time and you are in no position to make such assurances. We are treading on new ground with this incident and there will be unforeseen consequences.

                    4. Ok. Get back to me when any of that materializes and maybe you’ll have a point.

                    5. “Get back to me when any of that materializes and maybe you’ll have a point.”

                      The meltdowns occurred some 4 years back. They resulted in the destruction of the facility and are still leaking today. It was not a minor incident.

                    6. You can repeat it all you want, until you can substantiate it your words are empty.

                    7. The meltdowns incapacitated their ability to generate electricity. They are still disabled and leaking radioactive isotopes that have to be safely contained or vented into the ocean. How is this minor? I can’t understand what you are driving at. The Japanese spent billions of yen constructing the facility to generate electricity. Those meltdown reactors are not doing so at the moment, and haven’t done so since the accident.

                    8. If the Fukushima reactors are unrecoverable, then it may be a “major” incident from a plant engineering perspective. But it has not resulted in deaths or lethal radiation outside of the immediate vicinity of the plant. It’s no Chernobyl.

                      The real “incident” is not the damage to a couple of reactors from a tsunami/earthquake but rather the shutting down of all reactors across the country by government fiat. Maybe you should drop a line to the Japanese and remind them that those reactors cost billions of yen and what they’ve done is damn foolish.

                    9. “We are treading on new ground with this incident and there will be unforeseen consequences.”

                      Concern troll concerns.
                      Where did you major in pomposity, trueman?

                    10. “Where did you major in pomposity, trueman?”

                      Comes naturally. Fukushima was not a minor incident. Kblino has no idea of what he’s talking about.

                    11. Kblino [sic] has no idea of what he’s talking about.

                      That may be so but simply stating it is not proof.

        3. Also, also Molten Salt Thorium reactors which are much safer than current technology. But any time you mention that the watermelons go all apoplectic about “dangerous, unproven technology.”

          1. dangerous, unproven technology

            The fun thing about the precautionary principle is that few people who apply it ever do so consistently. Massive solar/wind farms didn’t exist until very recently, and even then nobody actually has a national grid that’s heavily dependent on them. Yet, where is the precautionary principle there?

            1. Shush, you.

            2. Someone here once pointed out that, if you were to apply the precautionary principle completely consistently, you would never even be able to apply the precautionary principle in the first place.

              1. Indeed. The precautionary principle, in practice, can be summed up as “do the things I like because I say they’re good and don’t do the things I don’t like because I say they’re bad”.

              2. Yup. You can’t apply it until you prove it will never impose any costs on anyone. Which it demonstrably does. It’s self-negating ar a societal level.

            3. The Precautionary Principle should have been applied to Obamacare.

              1. Obamacare should have been applied to the Precautionary Principle.

          2. The reason that thorium is “dangerous, unproven technology” is that the US government had a policy to push uranium and plutonium for the purposes of building up our nuclear arsenal so that American nuclear scientists and engineers don’t know much about thorium.

      3. Sure we should be building more fission power plants and facilitate that with getting rid of excessive government regulations and eliminating the ability of the NIMBY and no-nukes types to effectively kill a project by tying it up in court for decades.

        That doesn’t mean we don’t proceed on fusion research though.

        My point about the greenies still stands though. They just want to control people.

        1. Some of them just want to control people. Some of them see hordes of cash coming their way. Some of them just want to feel morally superior. Most just want to social signal to their retarded prog friends.

          1. Why do you hate poor retarded people such that you compare them to progs? Retarded people are generally sweet puppy-like humans.

      4. Japan should have tried Asian Fusion

        1. Sashimi casserole with cornbread

  11. You know who else said a certain transition was irrevocable?

    1. Gender reassignment surgeons?

    2. Atheist funeral directors?

      1. That made me laugh. Well played.

    3. ExoMars Mission Control?

    4. Agent Smith?

    5. Richard Raskind?

    6. The Reverend Mother to the Lady Jessica?

    7. Taylor Swift?

  12. Last year, the investment bank Lazard calculated that the levelized unsubsidized cost of utility-scale solar photovoltaic electricity?levelized means capital, fuel, and operation and maintenance are all taken into account?would range between $58 and $70 per megawatt-hour. For on-shore wind, it’s $32 to $77. The cost of cheapest fossil fuel competitor, natural gas combined cycle generation, ranged between $52 and $78 per megawatt-hour. If Lazard is right, the clean energy transition does look irresistible.

    Did that analysis factor anything in for the form of energy being reliably persistent? (I didn’t open the link because it wanted to use some pdf reader I’m not familiar with and jerry don’t play that.) I’d think that the necessary capital, fuel, operation and maintenance cost of the back-up gas plant required by a solar or wind power generation plant would be somewhere in the neighborhood of a primary gas plant, making a primary gas plant substantially cheaper. (Assuming gas plants aren’t required to have back-up wind or solar plants in case the pilot light goes out on the gas plant.)

    1. Here is the money quote that explains that. The short answer is “hell no they didn’t”

      Key sensitivities examined included fuel costs and tax subsidies. Other factors would also have a potentially significant effect on the results contained herein, but have not been examined in the scope of this current analysis. These additional factors, among others, could include: capacity value vs. energy value; stranded costs related to distributed generation or otherwise; network upgrade, transmission or congestion costs; integration costs; and costs of complying with various environmental regulations (e.g., carbon emissions offsets, emissions control systems). The analysis also does not address potential social and environmental externalities, including, for example, the social costs and rate consequences for those who cannot afford distribution generation solutions,

      The last clause is a very fancy and obtuse way of saying they didn’t consider the harm these technologies would cause to people who can’t afford to pay for the fancy backup technology and lifestyle adjustments that come with them.

      1. Or the strange fact that windmills disrupt sleep and generate tension in humans living nearby. The effect has been observed, but the mechanism is unclear. A hypothosis was that it had to do with frequencies of sound not within typical hearing or tuned out by the auditory processing in the brain before passing it to the conscious mind.

        1. Or the strange fact that windmills disrupt sleep and generate tension in humans living nearby.

          I know quite a few people who live around farms as well as warehouse and office workers who strive to function around them and it’s very much one of those perpetual ‘mysteries of science‘.

        2. I spent a couple of days working and sleeping in a wind farm near Arlington Oregon. Weird experience. Lots of noise across the spectrum. Creaking deep to shrill high pitched sounds. Not for me.

      2. More obtuse than the assumption that one’s state sinking into the ocean doesn’t constitute a lifestyle adjustment?

        1. Yes Tony, mother Gaia is going to come and punish us for our sinful consumptive ways some day. It is written, we know.

          1. If you haven’t the first clue what the argument actually is, how do you know you’re against it?

            1. That must be what you ask yourself every day.

              1. Tony doesn’t question. He just spews his talking points like a good soldier.

            2. Tony is there anything you won’t believe as long as the Left tells you to believe it? Anything? You believe this shit because your political betters tell you to. And if they ever tell you to stop believing, you will do that to.

              1. Tony has repeatedly said, not to mention shown, that he hasn’t the slightest understanding of what science is or how scientific work is done. To argue with him about science is akin to arguing with an armchair atheist about the true meaning of a religion.

                1. Actually, it’s more like an intellectually honest agnostic arguing the problem of evil with a true-believing theist.

                  The problem exists, but the theist will either refuse to understand the problem, dance around it, or construct a maze of contradictory evasions.

        2. Weren’t states already supposed to have sunk into the ocean, Tony? Which is of course why the elites who came up with this scam are building ocean side estates. Life is good when you can find enough useful idiots like Tony parroting whatever you tell them to.

          1. Didn’t Al Gore say we only had ten years to address CAGW back in 2004? Oh, and what happened to all those hurricanes that the Nobel Peace Prize winner said we’d be getting?

        3. Your mental state has been underwater for years.

  13. I wish I had a prog friend so I could troll them about a denier being head of the EPA.

    1. Assuming Pruitt gets confirmed, Trump is going to have to be pretty crazy and authoritarian for his Presidency not to have been worth it. Oh God I want Pruitt running EPA today and staying there for 8 years.

    2. Putting a lawyer in charge of scientists is almost as good as putting an MBA in charge of scientists.

      1. Because Steven Chu, PhD, did such a good job as Secretary of Energy…

        1. Nobody can beat an MBA when it comes to heading up a government bureaucracy and telling scientists what to do. I don’t know what Trump is thinking about hiring this lawyer.

          1. Yeah, it’s a real mystery why somebody who understands the impact of environmental regulations outside of the ivory tower might be well suited to head up a body with the power to impose such regulations on the entire country.

            1. Oh stop that, clearly someone who has never been outside of academia and has no awareness of the world outside, is the best person to run our lives.

              1. What I find most laughable about Chu’s tenure as Secretary of Energy is how thoroughly he was snookered by the legislature, the administration, the lobbyists, and the bureaucracy. He was way out of his depth but hey, he was a scientist!

              2. Look what a great job they did with ObamaCare. QED!

      2. Better than the social anthropologist who is now in charge.

    3. Tony could be your friend.

      He’s in the thread just above you waiting to be asked out for lunch.

      1. Tony’s no fun to troll, he’s too dumb to engage in debate.

    1. Well, that’s a relief.

    2. Their performance is much better than the wind turbines that the City of Addison, Texas installed on their water tower.

      They were predicted to yield about electricity valued at about 0.5% per year of capital invested, but had to be dismantled after a turbine blade landed in a nearby office conference room. Fortunately, it was unused at the time.

  14. “The private sector alone cannot solve the climate change problem,” and hobbling it with typically inept government mandates will ensure it cannot even tackle it.

  15. “…clean energy now costs less than dirty energy.”

    That is excellent. End all subsidies immediately.

    “The company basically makes purchasing commitments to renewable projects that offset the conventionally generated electricity that it gets from local utilities.”

    So, a shell game. why is this necessary, I wonder.

    There isnt any significant climate change. These people are cons.

    1. “These people are cons.”

      Even worse, they’re Chinese cons.

    2. So, a shell game. why is this necessary, I wonder.

      Google draws its power from conventional sources because it needs to be online to make money. It shells out to prop up unreliable sources because the people running the company feel the need to virtue signal. They can’t run a 24/7 global data network on intermittant energy.

      1. And like Google, I also need power 24/7 as do most people. Until we get a viable solution to the problem of storing electrical power wind and solar are not feasible as general power sources.

    3. It’s not quite a shell game. It works the same way in Texas. Here, you can choose your electricity provider. But the power is still delivered to you by the local utility. The power on the wire going into your house is, of course, commingled with power from all the different input sources.

      Texas’s power grid is isolated from other states, and it has big wind generation capability. I buy electricity from a wind provider. It is all just an accounting mechanism – they keep track of the power I use, and then verify that their wind farms pump at least that much power into the grid.

      So, in the end, if they are telling the truth, I have lightened the load on traditional coal or gas power plants and those old plants needed to produce less power.

      1. Every month like clockwork I get spam from the power company trying to get me to opt-in to buying electricity from “green” sources while in the fine print it admits that this will cost more than what I currently pay per kilowatt-hour.

        Fuck that, I want the cheapest per-unit electricity on the grid.

        1. And then there is the externality of spending extra money to support idiocy.

        2. I initially went with wind even though it was a bit more expensive for the very purpose of trying to help create a private market for clean energy.

          But recently I decided fuck it, I’ve done my part. So I called them up and said I’m switching to whatever the cheapest was. They said, oh! we’ll match that. So, there you go.

  16. My mom, 76, was born on a wheat farm in dusty west central Kansas. She tells me how my self-taught great grandpa was a tinkerer and inventor, and that he had electrified the homestead on his own using windmills and banks of batteries. The windmills were normally used to drive pumps for water wells, but he wired up generators, the house, and batteries.

    My grandma said that they had electric power since she was a little girl. None of the other farms had electricity, and the other farmers were interested in trying to do what he did.

    Then came the big centralized push for rural electrification. The other farmers lost interest and the batteries were disconnected.

    1. My mother, if she were still alive, would be 78. And she grew up on a farm in Southwest Kansas. And they had a wind charger for electricity as well. They were fairly common back then. But it is Kansas. The wind blows all of the time. And people didn’t use much electricity back then.

      1. And the windmilss being on the farm didn’t need to send that electricity very far…

        1. Yes. And there was a farmhouse every mile or so. It wouldn’t work so well in a city.

      2. It’s interesting to learn of your Kansas connection, John. I was going to use the term “wind charger” but I wasn’t sure if people would know what it is.

      3. My Opa lived in KS after the war but grew up in PA? he was working an oil field and said to the guy next to him, “It’s windy today.” The guy stood there for a moment and concentrated on the wind for a while then replied, “Yes, it is.”.

    2. So the lesson is that we should all move to small farms in Kansas?

      1. The farms in Kansas are big. Other than that, yes, apparently that is the lesson.

        1. And you need lots of windmills so that there’s some left after most of them blow away.

      2. something something wizard of oz

      3. I think of what would have happened if the centralized push hadn’t happened. These farmers were figuring out how to use their wind chargers to provide for their own power. And they might have come up with a way to share power. And they might have figured out an infinity of ways to solve the problem.

        I wonder if the centralization destroyed what could have been much more localized power generation for a lot of people.

  17. So any takers on what year solar finally breaks 1% of the grid? Note for reference 2 years ago it was .4% and is now .6%

    Wind and solar now rocking 5.3% total heck yeah!!!!

    https://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.cfm?id=427&t=3

    1. Please ignore that coal and natural gas take up 66% with nuclear 20%…petroleum is at 1%

    2. Coal is solar – with a solid-state storage system.

      1. How do greenies not like getting energy from plants?

        1. We’re going to run out of oil in a decade (prediction from 1970s). Didn’t answer your question, just giving a hint at the logic. Also, mother Gaia hit hardest.

          1. If they really believed that, they should be celebrating.

      2. I am so stealing that.

    3. Wind went from 4.4 to 4.7 in 2 years

      Naturgal gas from 29 to 33

      Wind and renewables cheaper than dirty fuel yea right lol

  18. It is probably inevitable that something will replace oil. Maybe hydrogen. The way to spot the energy system likely to do it is see which one causes the Enviromentalist Left to scream the loudest.

    1. Do you count fusion as hydrogen? Because oxidizing gaseous hydrogen has so many downsides that it’s non-viable in many applications. (Mostly logistical and safety)

      1. Like blowing up?

    2. Maybe hydrogen

      I’ve got a great idea. We’ll take this chemical energy storage medium that is liquid at 95% of the temperatures and pressures humans operate in, has amazing energy density, and is actually (relatively) difficult to get to react (so much so that we just pour a bunch of it in a metal tank and pump it to an engine to use) and we’ll stop using that. Instead, we’ll use a super-reactive substance that is a diffuse gas at almost every temperature and pressure humans experience, so we’ll have to use a ridiculous amount of energy to compress and cool it if we want high energy densities. For “safe” energy densities, we’ll need fuel cells, which are only approximately as safe as a Li-ion battery.

      1. Yes and lets take fuels that are readily usable in their current form and spend time and effort removing the hydrogen from them to do what you are talking about. The whole thing is absurd.

        1. Right. I forgot about the steam reforming of LNG as the primary way to generate H.

          1. My orphans are going to obtain hydrogen by taking extremely tiny ice picks to the the bonds in H2O. 🙂

  19. If society was really transforming to renewable energy why do they have to say it is so often?

    1. If you repeat a lie often enough, …

      1. Haha i know it was a rhetorical question mainly

      2. You know it’s reached inevitability when talking heads decry it and pundits try to restrict its use.

    2. Progs realize their ideas are based on pure bullshit, so they think if they just keep repeating them often enough, that they’ll magically become reality. Anyway, you don’t even know what socialism means!

      1. you don’t even know what socialism means

        I love seeing this one come up. Because it almost always means the person in question is operating off some idiosyncratic definition of socialism. Ok, fine, you want some nuance. But then they’ll turn around and draw some ridiculously shallow caricature of libertarians. So much for nuance.

        1. Socialism is like rocket science you know, you have to be a genius to actually understand it. Which is why so many idiots are the only people who know what it actually means. /sarc

          1. But I have a simple definition.

            First, you assume that all money belongs to government and we’re all in this together. Government is given broad powers to redistribute wealth because equality and social justice. Government runs out of other peoples money. Bad shit ensues.

            Simple.

            1. Government runs out of other peoples money. Bad shit ensues.

              Nope. Impossible. That can’t possibly happen because it isn’t intended to happen. Nope. Can’t happen. Socialism is powered by good intentions, not bad intentions like profit and greed. So only good things can happen. Anyone who says otherwise must have bad intentions, because bad intentions are the only possible explanation for criticizing good intentions.

            2. Actually the first thing you have to assume is that the government belongs to the people. If the left included everyone in the people, not just those that agree with them, there wouldn’t be a problem with assuming all money belongs to the government. Ideally we are just voting to forgo profits so we can have, hopefully nice, things that aren’t easy to monatize.

              I don’t have a suggestion on how to force the left to increase equitable government access. I’m just pointing out why I can’t vote for Democrats anymore.

          2. And why it’s been done “wrong” so many times. Don’t worry, they’ll totes get it right next time.

          3. Socialism to most people, the young Bernie supporters for example, means I get free stuff. It becomes much less attractive once they find out that they too will have to pay.

        2. Libertarian = somalia!

          What is funny is somalia was a socialist state that morphed into a dictatorship (shocker) and then got overthrown and now is a bunch of warlord states.

          1. As far as I can tell, less than 10% of the people who equate libertarianism with Somalia know that the country was communist for decades before it fell into chaos.

            1. Since when did leftists ever let silly things like facts get in the way of the narrative?

            2. So libertarianism is the result of communism!

      2. I think you bring up a good point regarding progs which someone mentioned earlier….they get so close to getting it but then turn away back to their fox hole at the last moment.

        I think it is because they realize if they are wrong on X, then they will have to re-evaluate Y, Z, A, B, C etc which may crumble their whole view by having to admit they were wrong. This scares them

        1. Whatever the reason, few if any of their solutions ever seem to work, which you would think might incline them to at least rethink some of their premises, but no.

  20. Now i don’t have much associations with progs. Are they like miserable people? They seem that way…they remind me of my teen years mentality…things not fair, big bad corporations, deciding what is for my friends own good. Like a little kid view of the world

    1. You’re lucky. Yes, most of them are miserable wretches. Especially the women.

      1. Mikey gets turned down a lot. He blames progressivism, though it’s probably more to do with the fact that he communicates mainly through grunts and smells, and is terrified of bathing.

        1. I’m married. To a woman, gay boy. I’m sorry.

          1. Yes, Mikey, me making fun of you for being an angry idiot means i’m gay. You’re a real logical guy. My thoughts and prayers are with your wife, although i suspect you’ll find that a RealDoll isn’t able to enter into a legally recognized marriage in any jurisdiction.

  21. The momentum away from fossil fuels and toward renewables is ‘undeniable and irresistible’ assert activists.

    Wanna bet?

    1. Wanna bet

      Julian Simon does.

  22. Price comparisons between variable renewables and dispatchable sources are meaningless! The underutilization and extra wear ant tear from extra spinup obviously means a rising (likely exponential) penetration curve.

    1. An adoption curve can never be exponential in the long-run, but if you are saying that we are at the inflection point between “slow early adoption” and “rapid adoption prior to saturation”, then you haven’t really provided any justification. “Underutilization” is kind of meaningless here.

  23. Breakthrough 24/7/365 Power & Propulsion Technologies will help to replace fossil fuels fast. The ground-breaking new science increases the odds for human survival on a rapidly warming planet!

    AESOP technologies are designed to run, without interruption, on atmospheric (ambient) heat, a huge untapped reservoir of solar energy, larger than earth’s total fossil fuel reserves.

    Revolutionary science opened the door to these breakthrough technologies which exploit a loophole in the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Scientists at the Argonne National Laboratory recently announced that an international team had discovered a loophole in the Second Law that permits such technologies. See SECOND LAW SURPRISES under MORE at aesopinstitute.org for an article about the Argonne Lab news release.

    A Ford engine converted to run without fuel on atmospheric (ambient) heat was the first Proof of Concept.

    1. That’s nice, but how does it relate to Timecube?

      1. I like the video that they link to in their “prospectus” which:

        a) has a bunch of grainy pictures that look like somebody pointed a video camera at a computer screen (seriously, you can see the LCD matrix in most of them)
        b) has a bunch of comments about how “big oil” is suppressing their patents, yet curiously includes no links to any reject patent applications

        1. I bought one of their 100MPG carburetors some time back, and what a rip-off!
          I never got more than 98MPG!

    2. Why don’t you run it on static electricity?

  24. one-fifth of Americans live in states that currently plan to get at least 50 percent of their energy from renewable sources by around 2030.

    I seem to recall that, back in the early 1990s, California ARB had a mandate that about half of the vehicles in the state would be electric or hydrogen powered by now. No government energy plan survives first contact with the laws of thermodynamics.

  25. OK, if that’s the case, then the activists can all get out of my face and go home.

  26. I’m all out of car tires to burn but I do have four 11.00R 20″s in my pile. I will dedicate their fiery recycling to you Ron.

  27. You must note the hidden costs of dirty energy in healthcare and extra deaths so this makes non polluting at production energy even more attractive.
    Any farm where they get enough wind should be able to put up at least a couple of Wind Turbines with no interference.
    On Solar using good land for generation I’m less enthusiastic.

    1. “On Solar using good land for generation I’m less enthusiastic.”

      Or endless tracts of suburban housing.

    2. hidden costs of dirty energy

      In a society as litigious as ours, how are any of these costs being hidden?

    3. “You must note the hidden costs of dirty energy in healthcare and extra deaths so this makes non polluting at production energy even more attractive.”

      Cite missing.

  28. I have 43 years in the electrical and fuels industry – alternative is a joke – they make money only due to subsidies and regulations requiring buying the power they marginally produce at spot market prices – while fossil generation must still be available and in spinning reserve to supplement them when the alternative is off line –

    alternative is a tax scam for billionaires –

  29. “The private sector alone cannot solve the climate change problem” (a “problem” that’s been going on for 4.5 billion years) – but government can? . . . . . Now visualize Robert Ne Niro in your face, screaming, “you kiddin’ me – YOU KIDDIN’ ME!

  30. if renewables were truly cheaper when taking into account ALL costs (including publically funded subsidies….. ooops, did I HAVE to say that? Yep..) backup systems, depreciation and obsolescence, then we’d already have it in place by now. We’re not stupid, nor are the market.

    My own energy costs, home unchanged for 20+ years, same KwHr usage per month, have gone from $22-23 per month five years ago to $65-70 per month today. The ONLY thing changed is the base rate/KwHr, and the penalty rate floor, which i ALWAYS hit these days, and NEVER hit five years go. Rate has gone from 3 cents/KwHr to 9 – 10 cents now, the floor has gone from 1000 KwHr to 600. I typically use between 650 and 700 KwHr/month.

    SO MUCH money is spent on promoting this “renewable” nonsense, with tax funded subsidies, and is never or rarely added to the FULL cost of it. Then they go and do stupid stuff like mandating biofuel additives to motor fuel, special blends for different parts of the same state, and destroying one car manufacturer who had diesel engines burning signficantly cleaner in parts per mile emitted than EPA even is brave enough to mandate, but off by a tiny percentage on relative emission….. and the manufacturer played by EPA’s rules. So now we’re forced to burn a whole lot MORE diesel because the kings and priests at EPA have pontificated. A pox on them all, and their house.

    1. do you realize that a US dollar today is worth much less than a US dollar 20 years ago? Even 8 years ago,food prices were much lower than today. I believe food prices have gone up 40 % in just the last few years.

  31. “Irresistable”?
    To be that, it has to be more readily available, and less expensive.
    #MassiveFail

  32. Trump Cannot Stop ‘Irrevocable’ Transition to Clean Energy, Say Activists: New at Reason
    Trump will not stop ‘irrevocable’ transition to clean energy, say activists

    Those are a bit different. How can it be both?

  33. like Dawn replied I’m shocked that someone able to profit $8730 in a few weeks on the
    As Harold said I am startled that a student can get paid $7187 in four weeks on the internet .
    hop over to this site
    +_+_+_+_+_+_+_+_+ http://www.homejobs7.com

  34. I don’t believe Lazard’s numbers. But even accepting them arguendo at stated value, they fail to take into account the intermittent nature of renewable enrgy.

    What is the “levelized cost” of a pound of ripe tomatoes? A ticket to a baseball game? A airline flight?

  35. til I looked at the receipt four $6371, I didnt believe that…my… mom in-law could trully receiving money in there spare time at their computer.. there friends cousin has done this for under 15 months and as of now paid the morgage on their mini mansion and got a new Infiniti. navigate to this site

    ????????> http://www.homejobs7.com

  36. Google isn’t factoring in the solar panel and battery replacement costs, because hey don’t know what the failure rate will be. Then there is the cost of disposing of the failed panels and batteries that aren’t known.

  37. “The private sector alone cannot solve the climate change problem,” the Risky Business report concludes. “We know from our collective business and investment experience that the private sector will take action at the necessary speed and scale only if it is given a clear and consistent policy and regulatory framework.”

    Your collective experience is in justifying massive crony capitalism, over and over again. And you just want to enrich yourselves.

  38. HIDE THE DECLINE!

  39. It’s time to call the green’s bluff. If wind and solar are now competitive there is no need to subsidize them, and while we are eliminating their subsidies we can level the playing field by eliminating any tax breaks other than normal business expense tax deductions that the fossil fuel producers get.

  40. Nope, climate change is here to stay. All that remains is the clowns cooing over Ivanka doing the hokey-pokey with Gore, libertarians to claim that it does not exist/market will provide solutions and then mock Google, and the silent rush to buy land in Nova Scotia, Siberia, and Greenland. They should be tropical paradises for my great great great granchildren.

  41. I doubt that solar and wind make enough energy to cover their own manufacture(and recycling),while still providing energy for end use. IMO,if we really want clean energy **in any practical manner**,we have to go nuclear.
    (and without cutting back our lifestyles)

    When a US solar or wind company uses their own products to make and recycle their products,and sustains that,then perhaps I’ll start believing. That should include the mining and refining of ores into metal and silicon.
    TANSTAAFL.

  42. my friend’s ex-wife makes $79/hour on the internet. She has been unemployed for five months but last month her payment was $13079 just working on the internet for a few hours. check

    ==================================> http://www.homejobs7.com

  43. Trump can make fossil fuels as cheap as he wishes by subsidizing them enough. With a representative of Exxon as Secretary of State, the US can convince other countries to keep the subsidies high in exchange for some other concession, and we probably won’t even hear about it.

    Merely running all the existing fossil fuel infrastructure as long as it lasts is enough to ensure global disaster, absent some miracle.

    Running it imposes a burden (externality) on the rest of us, but the owners don’t pay that — instead, we do. A carbon tax simply makes the polluters pay for the damage they do to the rest of us.

  44. Trump can make fossil fuels as cheap as he wishes by subsidizing them enough. With a representative of Exxon as Secretary of State, the US can convince other countries to keep the subsidies high in exchange for some other concession, and we probably won’t even hear about it.

    Merely running all the existing fossil fuel infrastructure as long as it lasts is enough to ensure global disaster, absent some miracle.

    Running it imposes a burden (externality) on the rest of us, but the owners don’t pay that — instead, we do. A carbon tax simply makes the polluters pay for the damage they do to the rest of us.

  45. Clean energy is inevitable only if it it cheaper than fossil fuel energy. Remember poverty kills and high energy costs create poverty. Death rates correlate to income and most of the world is poor. The US, Canada, Europe may be able to afford expensive clean energy, the rest of the world cannot. When an energy source cheaper than fossil fuels without subsidies on either is create, then you will see real movement throughout the world.

  46. That “Clean Energy Future” had BETTER be inevitable …. otherwise all that comfort, convenience, and “prosperity” that people keep screaming about won’t amount to a hill of beans.

  47. Brianna. true that Kathryn`s st0rry is impressive… I just received themselves a Jaguar E-type from bringing in $5324 recently and-over, ten-k this past-munth. it’s definitly the coolest work Ive ever done. I started this 3 months ago and straight away started to bring home minimum $81.. per/hr. straight from the source

    ==============> http://www.homejobs7.com

  48. Liam. I agree that Carl`s bl0g is cool… I just got a great new Honda since getting a cheque for $9458 thiss month and just a little over 10/k this past-munth. without a doubt its the most financially rewarding I’ve ever had. I started this six months/ago and almost immediately started earning at least $75, per hour. go now

    =====================> http://www.homejobs7.com

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.