Energy Policy

Green Madness In Minnesota

Featured image A couple of weeks ago, my think tank released a comprehensive report on the costs and benefits of adopting a 50% “green” power mandate in Minnesota, in place of the current 25% mandate. The costs would be staggering–$80 billion, a 40% increase in the price of electricity, $1,200 additional cost every year for each Minnesota family, a $3 billion annual decline in the state’s GDP, and destruction of 21,000 permanent »

“Clean” Energy? What’s That?

Featured image Shills for wind- and solar-derived energy refer to such sources as “green” or “clean.” But are they really? In what sense? And compared to what? This video by the Clear Energy Alliance makes the case that wind and solar energy are not notably cleaner than fossil fuels, pollution from which has declined rapidly. Actually, the video is understated. It could have been more hard-hitting, I think, with a sharper focus »

Green New Deal: Collateral Damage

Featured image The latest in the Clear Energy Alliance’s series on the Green New Deal is titled “Collateral Damage.” It itemizes some (by no means all) of the adverse effects that would follow if anyone actually tried to implement the pipe dream that goes by the name of the Green New Deal. For a comprehensive analysis of the disaster that would result from a far more moderate “green” energy program, check out »

The Folly of “Green” Energy, Part MCVII

Featured image It is remarkable how alleged environmentalism can gather an almost infinite number of bad policies under a single umbrella. I wrote here about the folly of “biomass,” a fancy term for Europeans burning low-quality American trees. Why do they do it? Because of legal requirements to obtain a specified percentage of energy from “renewable” sources, while only politically favored energy sources–like American wood–count as renewable. “Green” energy policies couldn’t be »

Exposing the Real Costs of “Green” Energy

Featured image Today Center of the American Experiment released a groundbreaking paper that addresses a relatively mild “green” proposal: legislation that would raise the renewable energy standard in Minnesota from 25% to 50%. Two of my staffers have been working on the paper for months, drawing on publicly available (but rarely consulted) sources to understand what would be necessary to achieve that 50% goal, what it would cost, how it would impact »

Stupidity of the Green New Deal, Video Version

Featured image On Fox Business earlier this evening, I talked with host Liz McDonald about the fatuity of the Green New Deal, which is not a plan but rather a wish list. The nearest analogy, I think, is a child’s letter to Santa Claus. Our friends at Clear Energy Alliance have sprung into the breach with several videos that cover the basics of why the Green New Deal is so dumb. You »

Biomass: Another “Green” Fraud

Featured image I would have said that nothing could exceed the folly of wind and solar energy, but biomass may come close. This Vox article is headlined: “Europe’s renewable energy policy is built on burning American trees.” You no doubt have heard of “biomass,” but likely don’t know what it actually means. As the headline suggests, it mostly means American trees. In the lowland forests of the American southeast, loblolly pines and »

The Folly of Solar Energy

Featured image The late January brownout in central Minnesota, during a time of Arctic cold, showed that reliance on “green” energy can be life-threatening. Xcel Energy instructed customers to turn thermostats down to 60 degrees and refrain from using hot water. Xcel went so far as to put some customers up in hotels. Investigation of the brownout has been informative. The principal problem, given that Minnesota has invested massively in wind energy, »

A Preview of the Green New Deal

Featured image Liberals love trains. I am not sure why that is; it certainly wasn’t true in the 19th and early 20th centuries. But as train travel has become less practical, liberals have learned to love it. Thus, a principal feature of the Green New Deal Socialism is reliance on passenger trains to replace air travel, and to largely replace automobile travel. Good luck with that–the liberals have a better chance of »

The Trouble With Solar

Featured image The Democrats’ Green New Socialism proposes blanketing the U.S. with solar panels and wind turbines so as to replace all reliable forms of power generation with unreliable, intermittent sources. Everyone knows that solar panels don’t produce electricity at night, but there is another problem: they don’t produce electricity when it snows, either. A friend took this photo and wrote: I was up in Ramsey [Minnesota] picking up my camper, and »

Electric Vehicles? Don’t Get ‘Em Cold!

Featured image Are electric vehicles the wave of the future, or expensive toys? This shocking news story–shocking if you live in the North, anyway–suggests the latter. Cold temperatures can sap electric car batteries, temporarily reducing their range by more than 40 percent when interior heaters are used, a new study found. *** Many owners discovered the range limitations last week when much of the country was in the grips of a polar »

Power Line Goes to Washington

Featured image Judith Curry is one of the world’s most respected climate scientists. On Wednesday, she testified before the House Committee on Natural Resources on the complexities and uncertainties that are too often unacknowledged in the debate over global warming. Her testimony is here and is worth reading in its entirety. Its rational, scientific approach contrasts strongly with the ill-informed hysteria that usually predominates on this topic. On pages 7-8 of her »

MS. found in a memory hole

Featured image As Steve noted in his update to “The Green New Deal and gerundive government,” the FAQ accompanying the release of the Green New Deal resolution was promptly removed by the resolution’s sponsors and deposited into an Orwellian memory hole. A close reading of the document — such as the one by David Harsanyi, say, or Rich Lowry — suggests that it boldly satirizes the worthy project to rescue our planet »

Why “Green” Energy Is Futile, In One Lesson

Featured image Here in Minnesota, we are enduring a brutal stretch of weather. The temperature hasn’t gotten above zero in the last three days, with lows approaching -30. And that is in the Twin Cities, in the southern part of the state. Yesterday central Minnesota experienced a natural gas “brownout,” as Xcel Energy advised customers to turn thermostats down to 60 degrees and avoid using hot water. Xcel put up some customers »

Videos of the Week: Electric Boogaloo

Featured image Elon Musk is getting his usual attention for his latest gee-whiz stunt of running a mile of tunnel under Los Angeles and proposing to solve the city’s legendary traffic congestion by turning Angelenos into commuting Mole People—with electric cars, or course, and guess who makes those? I wouldn’t rule out the idea, and in general think that Musk gets more shade than he probably deserves. But surely he deserves some. »

Libs oppose Manchin becoming Energy Committee’s ranking member

Featured image Sen. Joe Manchin is the leading contender to become the senior Democrat on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. Manchin, however, is pro-coal, as befits a Senator from West Virginia. And when Manchin ran for the Senate in 2010, a campaign ad featured him shooting a bullet through a piece of “climate change” legislation. The left wasn’t amused then, and it isn’t amused now. Tom Steyer has joined environmental »

Drill, Barry, Drill!

Featured image Watching Barack Obama try to take credit for the achievements of others has a certain twisted entertainment value. This time it is the fracking revolution that has made America the world’s number one producer of oil and gas. Almost unbelievably–it would be unbelievable, if we were talking about anyone but Obama–Barack is now attempting to take credit for it! You can’t make this stuff up. Mark Mathis of Clear Energy »