Energy Policy

Energy Book of the Year

Featured image I’ve mentioned a lot of good books on energy and energy policy (especially from my energy rabbi Robert Bryce, who has a new book coming out in May), but right now I’m reading one that is absolutely bowling me over: U.S. Energy Policy and the Pursuit of Failure, by Peter Z. Grossman (published by Cambridge University Press).  Grossman is a professor of economics at Butler University, and on this book »

Energy: One Lump or Two?

Featured image Groundhog Day is just a few weeks off, which means it’s time for another post about . . . energy. What did environmentalists get in their Christmas stockings from Santa?  A big lump of coal.  More than one lump in fact.  If the world’s energy mix were analogized to getting a cup of coffee at Starbucks, we’d see everyone getting two lumps in their latte. There’s no doubt that the »

The Cleantech Crash on 60 Minutes

Featured image “60 Minutes,” not exactly a fan of Power Line’s way of thought (heh), did a belated public service last night with a segment on “The Cleantech Crash,” noting that taxpayers had shelled out billions for stupid “green” energy boondoggles.  Silicon Valley legend Vinod Khosla comes in for especially heavy weather, along with a bureaucratic wunderkind who said “Who-me?” Stahl: Part of this was supposed to be creating new jobs. Everything »

This Is Why You Build Pipelines, Kids

Featured image A former State Department official who told me not long ago that Canadians are baffled—and exasperated—with President Obama’s opaque stance on the proposed Keystone pipeline.  This seems rather simple to me: Obama is in the clutch of the environmentalists, and the Canadians simply don’t understand that Obama is heedless of U.S.-Canadian trade relations.  Keystone has made blockheads out of the administration, which is why I think we should be calling »

Plasma Time

Featured image George Will’s column over the weekend was about the Princeton Plasma Physics Lab, which fits George since he is a Princeton alum.  He comes to the main policy point at the end: Because the fusion energy program lacks such immediacy, transparency and glamour, it poses a much more difficult test for the political process. Because of its large scale and long time horizon, the fusion project is a perfect example »

Green Weenie of the Year: The Wind-Talkers

Featured image Connoisseurs of environmental lore may recall the time Fred Hartley, the then-chairman of Union Oil, was skewered for his comment to a Senate committee in the aftermath of the 1969 Santa Barbara oil spill that “I’m amazed at the publicity for the loss of a few birds.”  He was widely skewered for his insensitivity to nature, at a time when Americans were shocked and outraged at the front-page photos of »

Hollywood’s Fracking Idiots

Featured image Keeping up with and putting down all the idiocy that comes out of Hollywood would be an endless task, which is why we only do it occasionally here for special cases like Sean Penn.  So it’s good to see the Western Energy Alliance standing up to Hollywood’s anti-fracking nonsense in this one-minute video that calls out their blatant hypocrisy. It has just the right note of indignation. »

Gaseous Anomalies, Or What Would We Do Without Expert Forecasts?

Featured image In retrospect the entire Alan Greenspan era at the Federal Reserve doesn’t look so good, though I attribute his bad judgment to his decision to marry Andrea Mitchell of NBC.  In any case, Matt Ridley dredges up for us Greenspan’s assessment of the natural gas market in the U.S. ten years ago: “Today’s tight natural gas markets have been a long time in coming, and distant futures prices suggest that »

Even a Stopped Clock . . .

Featured image As the old saying goes, even a stopped clock is right twice a day, but it behooves us to take note of the rare occasions when the Obama Administration gets something right.  I’m sure it is an accident or an oversight, or occurred when someone unaccountably blundered while O-bambi was out on the Back Nine, but still. . . First, props to the Pentagon for flying B-52s the other day »

Enviros Suffering Nuclear Meltdown

Featured image I’ve written before here about the documentary film Pandora’s Promise, in which prominent environmentalists have changed their mind about nuclear power.  Then a couple weeks ago several prominent climate alarmists, headed by the egregious James Hansen, put out an article advocating a return to nuclear power.  Naturally this has upset the retrograde/reactionary environmentalists who are stuck in 1979 and can’t get over Three Mile Island. Last Thursday CNN decided to »

Windmills, 600,000; Bats, 0

Featured image Let’s face it: wind power is bat—- crazy.  As we’ve noted here before, windmills are the Cuisinarts of the sky, with an avian mortality rate that would shut down any other industry.  (Quick question: which kills more birds: wind power, or offshore oil spills?  Wind power takes the prize by orders of magnitude.) A new report says that windmills in the U.S. killed an estimated 600,000 bats last year.  I »

No Reason, Just Hate: That’s a Modern Liberal

Featured image The Left’s hatred for conservatives has become so obsessive that it is hard to engage a liberal in rational discussion of any public policy issue. Take the Keystone XL pipeline: I think it is obviously a good idea, but if a liberal wants to argue to the contrary, fine. But instead of trying to advance a rational argument, what do liberals do? They can’t talk about the pipeline except by »

It Always Comes Back to Nukes

Featured image A few months back I had a conversation with an important left-leaning philanthropist (his foundation’s annual grants total more than nine figures before the decimal point) who said that the single greatest error of his long career was opposing nuclear power back in the 1970s and 1980s. I have slightly heterodox views on the subject of nuclear power.  I’m not against it of course, but I also think the typical »

The Return of the King (Coal, That Is)

Featured image As a sequel to yesterday’s note about the Obama administration’s war on coal (“Coal in the Balance”), it is worth noting that the rest of the world is not following our peculiar mania.  Despite all of the bold talk of reducing carbon emissions by all the brave declaration-signers at the annual UN climate jamborees, the long-range projections by the International Energy Agency and other sober-minded analysis show that coal is »

Coal in the Balance

Featured image The government shutdown may be having an effect on the EPA’s drive to finalize a new regulation aimed at shutting down coal-fired power in the United States, but maybe not.  After all, given that the EPA essentially farms out much of its regulatory design to environmental groups, the Sierra Club and NRDC may be prepared to hand the finished regulation over when the shutdown ends.  Nothing like having private-sector adjuncts »

Carbon Capers

Featured image When you set up a trading scheme for hot air, this is exactly what you should expect: Britain charges 6 people over multimillion dollar pollution credit fraud LONDON (AP) –  British prosecutors say six men have been charged over a massive pollution credit fraud scheme that cost the British government many millions of pounds (dollars.) The Crown Prosecution Service says that four of the men created a string of dummy »

Why Only I Can Solve Global Warming

Featured image Well, this is fun.  Our pals at the center-left Breakthrough Institute, Ted Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger, suggest today that if global warming is truly a catastrophic problem the only people who could solve it are . . . conservatives.  And there’s my happy mug on their web page display today, next to Dr. Evil the Koch brothers (and my sometimes debate partner Robert Bryce): This fits with what I’ve been »