Energy Policy

Why “Green” Energy Is a Terrible Idea

Featured image There are lots of reasons, actually, but Charles Rotter of the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) does a good job of explaining some of them: Ask them for details, and their responses range from evasive to delusional, disingenuous – and outrage that you would dare ask. The truth is, they don’t have a clue. They’ve never really thought about it. It’s never occurred to them that these technologies require »

Has Nuclear’s Time Come?

Featured image If you seriously think that carbon dioxide emissions pose an existential threat to the planet–I don’t, but let’s assume you do–the only rational course is to go nuclear. Wind and solar are both terrible for the environment; more important, they are intermittent and unreliable. The most modern wind technology produces electricity only around 40% of the time. Solar varies with the climate, but in my home state of Minnesota, solar »

The Epic Hypocrisy of Tom Steyer, Revisited

Featured image One of the Democrats’ stranger presidential pretenders is Tom Steyer. Steyer hasn’t made a dent in the polls so far, despite spending a lot of money. (Like many who would like to be president, having money is Steyer’s principal qualification.) Steyer’s main issue in the campaign–really, his only issue–is climate change. So one of the more interesting moments in last night’s debate was when Joe Biden responded to a climate »

We’re Number One!

Featured image When it comes to energy and the environment, the United States ranks a clear number one among the world’s nations. Not only have we increased our energy production, courtesy of fracking, to the point that we are the world’s pre-eminent energy power, we have, at the same time, reduced our pollution and our CO2 emissions (if you think that matters) more than any other country. So when it comes to »

The Renewable Portfolio Scam

Featured image Twenty-nine states have adopted renewable portfolio standards that require utilities to get a specified percentage of power from wind and solar sources. (I believe some enlightened jurisdictions include hydro power; I am not sure whether any include nuclear, as they obviously should. But there is no money to be had there.) This video from the Clear Energy Alliance explains why such standards are extraordinarily expensive and do zero good. But »

Climate Sense and Nonsense

Featured image Since today is Climatepalooza at the UN and in the streets of DC (aside: how many Nobel Peace Prize nominations will Greta Thunberg receive this year?), it might be worth checking in on a couple of serious questions. Like climate modeling on the science side, and decarbonization on the policy side. In conjunction with the climate hijinks, The Economist put out a special climate change issue, and much to my »

What Next in the Persian Gulf?

Featured image Assuming Iran is indeed behind the attack on Saudi Arabia’s major oil refining facility, it represents a step-increase in Iranian-backed aggression in the region. The Wall Street Journal‘s Spencer Jakab says this attack is “the big one“: Saturday’s attack on a critical Saudi oil facility will almost certainly rock the world energy market in the short term, but it also carries disturbing long-term implications. Ever since the dual 1970s oil »

Showdown In Houston

Featured image The Democratic presidential contenders will square off in Houston tonight. Meanwhile, things are already heating up there. President Trump has a giant anti-socialism banner circling the city: Is there any possible way the Democrats can get through the evening without talking about the banner, and explaining why their “socialism” won’t destroy the economy? I doubt it. Another confrontation is also underway. Greenpeace thugs have shut down the Houston Ship Channel »

Dem contenders rally around a carbon tax, may soon regret it

Featured image I believe that all of the leading Democratic candidates for president have endorsed a carbon tax. Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren did so during CNN’s town hall on climate change last week. Down a tier or two, Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg endorsed it, as well. Bernie Sanders has endorsed a carbon tax in the past. The carbon tax was a bridge too far for Hillary Clinton during the 2016 »

The Environmental Fiasco of Wind Energy

Featured image Wind turbines only last for around 20 years, so many of them are now wearing out. That raises serious questions about disposal of defunct wind turbine parts. The turbines’ giant blades are not recyclable, so they must be dumped in landfills. The Sioux Falls Argus Leader reports on one South Dakota landfill that is saying no mas to wind turbine blades: [T]he Argus Leader reports that more than 100 wind »

Batteries: A Forlorn Hope

Featured image The most efficient wind turbines produce electricity around 40% of the time, solar panels far less often in most climates. So how do “green” energy advocates propose to produce electricity the 60% of the time when the wind isn’t blowing, or the 85% of the time (in some areas) when solar panels are ineffective? They build natural gas plants that ramp up and down depending on the weather. In other »

The Most Influential Research of 2019

Featured image I wrote here about the fact that a paper produced by my organization, Center of the American Experiment, is one of three finalists for the Bob Williams Award for the Most Influential Research of the last 12 months, awarded by the State Policy Network. The paper is “Doubling Down on Failure”. It exposes the real costs of “green” energy and is, I think, enormously important. The Williams Award will be »

“Green” Energy Is Sinister

Featured image We conservatives tend to argue that “green” energy (wind and solar) is unreliable, inefficient, expensive, and virtually useless, even if we accept the climate change gospel*. But the truth is worse than that. Far from being well-intentioned, as most assume, “green” energy is the great corporate scam of our age. And green energy is not kind to the Earth as school children are taught. Rather, wind and solar are terrible »

Climate Solution? Trees

Featured image CO2 is plant food, which is why the Earth is getting greener as the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere increases. This is a negative feedback, since the more plant life, the more CO2 gets absorbed. Planting more trees has long been offered as a potential solution to CO2-induced global warming, and the Clear Energy Alliance notes a new study that argues planting large numbers of trees can neutralize man-made »

The Most Influential Research of 2019

Featured image I have written a couple of times about a paper titled “Doubling Down on Failure” which was published by Center of the American Experiment, the policy organization that I run, in March. The paper exposes the real costs of “green” energy and is, I think, enormously important. First, though, a Power Line note: “Doubling Down on Failure” builds on an earlier American Experiment paper, “Energy Policy in Minnesota: The High »

Wind Energy Collapsing In Germany

Featured image Steve has written a number of times about Germany’s experience with wind power, which illustrates the futility of thinking that renewables can ever replace reliable energy sources like coal, nuclear and natural gas. The latest news from Germany offers an original twist: The expansion of wind power in the first half of this year collapsed to its lowest level since the introduction of the Renewable Energy Act (EEG) in 2000. »

Why Wind and Solar Will Never Work

Featured image This paper by Mark Mills of the the Manhattan Institute and Northwestern University’s McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science, titled “The ‘New Energy Economy’: An Exercise in Magical Thinking,” does an excellent job of explaining why wind and solar energy will never replace fossil fuels or nuclear energy as a primary energy source. The problem is fundamental: the laws of physics. And, no, better batteries are not a solution. »