By Joseph D’Aleo
See the compelling interview by David Kreutzer on Fox Business yesterday.
Obama announced yesterday he want to double down on the wind and solar energy initiative and criticized Romney for challenging that. Wind now provides 2.3% of the nation’s electricity needs but only because it was driven by the $100billion in subsidies much of which went to cronies of Obama (a blatant example of crony capitalism). Wind has been around since the ‘80s (1880’s) and solar the ‘90s (1890’s). They were going to be the future in the 1970s but 40 years later they can’t compete with fossil fuels because of the cost.
Also wind is an unreliable energy source like its brother solar. The wind doesn’t always blow, the sun doesn’t always shine. As a result where they have invested heavily in wind they have had to keep fossil fuel and other energy sources in inefficient ready back up to keep the power on. This has failed in Texas where they rely on energy from West Texas a few winters back when arctic air descended on the state, but winds diminished under high pressure in the west where the wind turbines were but kept blowing where the people were in the east, the lights went out. In December, 2010, the second coldest December in the UK since the Little Ice Age in 1659, wind power delivered just 0.6% of the energy needs as the cold arctic air was with calm winds much of the time.
Instead of a job creator, as part of the 4 million green energy jobs promised by Obama in 2008, that has been a dismal failure, creating a claimed 75,000 jobs according to AWEA (a number challenged here). In Spain, the original model for Obama and the greens, they invested heavily in wind and solar but prices rose so high, it drove industry to China and India. 2.2 jobs were lost for every 1 green job created and only 1 in 10 green jobs were permanent. In Italy, it was 3.4 real jobs lost for every green job created. In Spain, unemployment rose to 25.5%, highest of any country. Not a single fossil fuel power plant was shut down and CO2 emissions went up 50% not down. Spain bacause like Don Qiuixote went chasing wind mills, is technically bankrupt in part because of subsidies to renewable energies, which have increased the country’s sovereign debt by some 30 billion dollars to date, plus 8 billion more each year because the subsidies are guaranteed for 20 years. They produce the same amount of electricity as before, but it costs much more. Their 18,000 wind turbines haven’t even reduced the consumption of fossil fuels, because of problems caused by their intermittency have stopped the subsidies and had to be bailed out by Germany. Germany is another country which has seen the light and cut back on the subsidies and are busy building coal plants. They found wind and solar were inefficient and were at the mercy of the Russians for natural gas. In England, Chris Huhne, the disgraced energy secretary now departed had an energy plans that was causing energy prices to skyrocket 140% in just eight years . Fully a quarter of the homes in Wales and most pensioners were in energy poverty, having to choose between heating and eating. When the brutal winters of recent years hit, thousands died from illnesses related to cold exposure. You see higher energy costs is a very regressive ‘tax’ (because it is driven by government policy and bad science) affecting poor and middle class the most. Even where we able to keep the power on (and there would be many brownouts and blackouts - ok by enviro standards as they begrudge our use of energy for HD TV, AC and other conveniences), some people will have to dine by candlelight because they can’t afford to pay the electric bills.
WIND HAS PROVEN TO BE DEADLY
The Audobon Society had challenged its environmental brothers on wind, finding the wind turbines kills hundreds of thousands of birds, including ‘protected’ species like raptors and eagles. Ironically environmental groups went after Exxon and won $600,000 in penalties when 6 birds were found drowned in an oil tank but look the other way at the hundreds of thousands of dead birds killed by these monstrous bird cuisanarts.
WIND JOBS ARE NOT HERE..THEY ARE OUTSOURCED
Wind blades and cement is manufactured not in the United States but mostly in China. 100,000s of jobs are involved. Many of Obama subsidized solar companies like Solyndra have gone bankrupt. In the wind industry, there have been notable losses and job layoffs.Recently DMI released 383 employees, Vestas 272, LM wind power 234, Gamesa 164 jobs.
WIND IS A HEALTH HAZARD TO HUMANS
Dr. Bob McMurtry, a prominent member of the Canadian health establishment, joins the victims of industrial wind turbines (IWT’s) in their call for Health Canada to turn over their future wind turbine noise study to Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). While the study is being conducted, they demand an immediate moratorium on all pending and proposed IWT projects. Residents near wind turbines report chronic inability to sleep, migraines and other ailments even heart attacks and suicides from the constant background hum from the turbines. The values of their homes have diminished. All for what ? Energy costs have gone up as quality of life has gone down.
WIND AND SOLAR ARE SUPPLEMENTAL SOURCES
Unlikely to rise out of the single digits in contribution to the energy needs unless we invest 1000s of billions of tex payer dollars but then then have to remember, the wind doesn’t alway blow, the sun doesn’t always shine. It may work when the farms are placed in remote location and noon will argue with someone for putting solar panels on their roofs to provide hot water and supplement other energy sources. But payback is 20 years unless we subsidize and no thanks count me out on subsidizing this investment. This administration and its band of idealogues wants to pick winners and losers instead of letting the market place do it. Natural gas and clean coal and the Keystone pipeline are no brainers if the administration only acted as it it had one. I will say I am not opposed to alternative energy. If a company develop a low cost solar panel I may someday buy one if I live long enough for that to happen.
On May 30, the Wall Street Journal alerted us to the Sierra Club’s new campaign aimed at killing the natural gas industry: “Beyond Natural Gas.” WSJ reports: “This is no idle threat. The Sierra Club has deep pockets funded by liberal foundations and knows how to work the media and politicians. As Marita Noon alerted u in the WSJ report, “The lobby helped to block new nuclear plants for more than 30 years, it has kept America’s energy policy is being dominated by environmentalists’ priorities--regardless of the impact to the American economy, individual communities, or economically-challenged citizens. The plans to shut down or limit America’s abundant, available, and affordable energy are organized, coordinated, and effective. The results will be “lights out in America--a dim future. Now much of the U.S. off-limits to oil drilling, and its ‘Beyond Coal’ campaign has all but shut down new coal plants. One of its priorities now will be to make shale gas drilling anathema within the Democratic Party.”
Meanwhile, while western Europe, realizing the failures of the green promise are rushing to build coal and gas power plants while Mr Obama’s administration doesn’t bother to study the real facts and make a decision that is right for the country instead of appealing to their lefty friends in Hollywood or the environmental groups and plans to double down on subsides with money we don’t have to technologies that have worldwide been proven failures and leave 100.000s or maybe millions of real jobs on the table in coal and natural gas and with the Keystone Pipeline. According to the latest forecasts from the Department of Energy in its latest Annual Energy Outlook, the fossil fuel (coal, natural gas and oil) share of energy consumption will fall only slightly in the future, from 83 percent of total U.S. energy demand in 2010 to 77 percent in 2035 (see chart). On the other hand, the future of renewables is not looking so bright, in terms of its future contribution to America’s energy demand. In 2010, renewables (wood, municipal waste, biomass, and hydroelectricity in the end-use sectors; hydroelectricity, geothermal, municipal solid waste, biomass, solar, and wind for generation in the electric power sector; and ethanol for gasoline blending and biomassd diesel in the transportation sector), contributed only about 7% of U.S. energy consumption, and that was less than the 8.9% share back in 1983. Even by 2035, more than twenty years from now, renewables as a fuel source are expected to provide less than 11% of total energy demand.
This issue is yet another issue why this election is so important in cleaning house in DC of the idealogues and replacing them with people with common sense, real ideas and solutions.