Energy Policy

More Tweaks on the Beaks of the Peaks

Featured image Beating up on the Malthusian “peak oil” crowd never gets old, and even though we took up this subject just last week (but also last year, and two years before that), I can’t resist noting that yet another prediction of mine has come true already. Last week I mentioned that some time soon The Economist was likely to reprint their “Drowning in Oil” cover from 1999 (below). Well this didn’t »

An End to “Peak Nonsense”?

Featured image One of the things about the conventional wisdom is how often you can rely on it being wrong. Statistics show that 95 percent of all conventional wisdom claims are wrong. Actually, I made that statistic up, but I’m sure it is close to being right. Maybe the Monkey Cage can get right on it and let me know. For a long time the conventional wisdom was that we arrived at »

Is the U.S. Crushing OPEC?

Featured image Want some good news? Some really good news? It’s this: the energy revolution in America has pretty much ended the decades-long reign of OPEC. I talked about this and other aspects of the current energy scene on the radio yesterday with one of my favorite energy analysts, Mark Mills of the Manhattan Institute. We also talked about the possibility for a serious revival of nuclear power, and there the one-word »

Renewable Cronyism

Featured image I take a more benign view than most conservatives of some of the dreadful budget compromises of the recent omnibus, because spending packages are always going to contain a lot of give and take. Better to look at the long game, to judge if any small victories or compromises may make possible better outcomes down the road. Such small details are as unsatisfying as cold peas, and often don’t pan »

Is Green Energy Making Britons Sick?

Featured image That’s the thesis of Eric Worrall at Watts Up With That? Falling living standards are contributing to a shocking surge in malnutrition, and diseases which were prevalent in the 1800s. My question – how much of this hardship is due to the skyrocketing cost of Britain’s green energy disaster? Worrall quotes the Independent: Cases of malnutrition and other “Victorian” diseases are soaring in England, in what campaigners said was a »

Inside Divestment

Featured image Today in New York the National Association of Scholars is releasing its latest report, Inside Divestment: The Illiberal Movement to Turn a Generation Against Fossil Fuels. You should be able to download a copy of the report or the summary version at the NAS website. The idea of demanding that colleges divest any stockholdings in companies that produce hydrocarbon energy (i.e., the energy that most colleges use as much as »

Goodbye, Keystone

Featured image TransCanada’s application for permission to build the Keystone XL pipeline has been kicking around the Obama administration for nearly seven years. Recently, TransCanada sought to withdraw its permit application, presumably on the theory that the Obama administration would never grant it, and it would be easier to start fresh with a new administration than to try to overturn a negative decision by the current one. Today President Obama responded by »

The Greatest Energy Chart Ever. Seriously. [Updated]

Featured image The original energy crisis goes back to the Jimmy Carter administration. There was a shortage of gasoline, which the Carter administration made worse by fixing oil prices. Cars lined up around the block to pump what little gasoline was for sale. Carter, of course, had a solution. And it sounds remarkably familiar, as Willis Eschenbach points out at Watts Up With That? We can’t keep relying on fossil fuels. They’re »

UK Energy Subsidy Fail

Featured image A cautionary tale out of the UK: after shoveling billions in subsidies for renewable energy and encouraging the closing of baseload coal-fired and nuclear power plants, the UK is now preparing to spend several hundred million pounds to subsidize electricity from . . . backup diesel generators. This is thought necessary to back up intermittent wind and solar installations, and because there’s going to be an electricity supply crunch in »

#Climatefail, China Edition

Featured image Remember a while back when Obama came back from China with a bilateral climate agreement in which China would cap its greenhouse gas emissions by . . . 2030? Never mind that China’s GHG emissions would double during that period—such is the desperation of the climatistas for glittering pieces of paper that they gushed about how the planet was now saved, because China is finally on board! The New York »

Keystone Put in Hibernation?

Featured image I was curious whether the election of Justin Trudeau in Canada might mean the end of the Keystone XL pipeline, since Trudeau holds orthodox views about climate change. But no—he expressed his support for Keystone, which means he isn’t going to let the Obama Administration off the hook for its shameful disrespect for our northern neighbor and largest trading partner. Yesterday TransCanada asked the U.S. government to suspend its review »

Green Weenie of the Week: The Dept. of Energy

Featured image Ronald Reagan used to like to say that the nine most frightening words in the English language are “I’m from the government and I’m here to help.” Which means the obvious costume for trick or treating is a government bureaucrat. Too bad Ronaldus Magnus didn’t succeed in abolishing the Department of Energy as he had proposed, for the DoE is up to even more tricks and treats with its suggestion »

Epic Greenfail All Around

Featured image First up, the Los Angeles Times says Gov. Jerry Brown is all wet with his claims that climate change is responsible for California’s drought and high number of fires this summer: Gov. Brown’s link between climate change and wildfires is unsupported, fire experts say By Paige St. John The ash of the Rocky fire was still hot when Gov. Jerry Brown strode to a bank of television cameras beside a »

Cleaning Up the Clean Power Plan

Featured image As John noted on Friday, a federal appeals court has blocked for the time being the EPA’s brazen extension of the Clean Water Act. What about its equally brazen extension of the Clean Air Act into a lever for the de facto nationalization of the nation’s electric utility industry? It is facing a legal challenge, too, and the legal arguments are typically arcane. I have no idea whether it will »

Wind Blows

Featured image As everyone knows, California is mired in a record drought. It usually gets lost in the shuffle that this has an impact on California’s energy supply, since the state has a non-trivial amount of hydropower: when you don’t have water, you can’t run the turbines in the dams. What happens when it doesn’t rain and the wind doesn’t blow? Turns out California is experiencing something of a wind-drought, too, as »

Enviros to Africa: Stay Poor and Die Early

Featured image Further to the point of Scott’s post earlier about the shallow-mindedness of environmentalists, I’ve recently obtained a leaked copy of a draft letter from the usual gang of pecksniffs (Oxfam, Sierra Club, etc) to the U.S. Senate demanding changes to the Electrify Africa Act of 2015, and it is an even worse parody than the witless Sierra Club president before Sen. Cruz. The facsimile here is a little small and »

Green Energy Failure of the Week

Featured image Anyone remember the radon scare of the late 1970s and early 1980s? One of the typically perverse outcomes of that era was the finding that insulating houses actually increased radon levels in homes because it reduced ventilation. Of course, as so often is the case, we later recognized that the radon hazard was way overblown—even the New York Times figured this out by the late 1980s. Another “I-told-you-so” moments for »