Energy Policy

Blackouts, Here We Come

Featured image People around the world are increasingly realizing that “green” energy is actually black–as in blackouts. Thus, in today’s Telegraph: “The UK is much closer to blackouts than anyone dares to admit.” We are heading for a big electricity crunch as it is. Whoever wins the general election, the next government will be committed to decarbonising the National Grid – by 2035 in the case of the Conservatives and by 2030 »

All Oil Everything—Duh

Featured image Our pal Remy Munasifi trains his trademark mockery on the “end oil” protestors who show up heavily-laden with petroleum based products: This takes us back to Chris Wright, founder and CEO of Liberty Oilfield Services (and a podcast guest three or four years ago), who made fools of North Face after an especially egregious example of virtue signaling: »

Steal From the Poor, Give to the Rich

Featured image That’s what solar power does. American Experiment’s Isaac Orr and Mitch Rolling have an excellent expose of California’s solar power scam: Stealing with solar: How wealthy Californians used solar panels to pick the pockets of low-income families. See original for links: Affluent households in California siphoned nearly $3.4 billion in 2021 from the pockets of low-income families through a government program called net metering. This program allows people with solar »

Juice—Power, Politics, and the Grid, Part 5: “Industrial Cathedrals”

Featured image The final installment of Robert Bryce’s new documentary decries our short-term thinking about what is almost literally the backbone of modern civilization: the electricity grid. We take it for granted, and allowed it to become the plaything of the green dreamers. We are setting ourselves up for catastrophe. If you haven’t already, there’s still time to sign up for Robert’s free Substack (he has a cool podcast, too). It’s worth »

Juice: Power, Politics, and the Grid, Part 4: “Nuclear Renaissance”

Featured image We’re back with part 4 of Robert Bryce’s new energy documentary, which looks at the sudden and surprising revival of nuclear power, which was thought to be dead for good after Jane Fonda’s fever dream came true with the Fukushima nuclear reactor explosion back in 2011. Yet Canada is on course to re-open a nuclear power plant it closed down a decade ago, and even the Biden Administration has just »

Juice: Power, Politics, and the Grid, Part 3: “Green Dreams”

Featured image This third episode of Robert Bryce’s new series explores the battle of the Osage Indian tribe against wind energy giant Enel, and this is just one story of local communities rebelling against landscape destroying wind and solar power. This installment is 24 minutes long. But still with the groovy music! This segment includes sound bytes from some of my favorite people, including Roger Pielke Jr, Michael Shellenberger, and Patty Limerick. »

Juice: Power, Politics, and the Grid, Part 2

Featured image Herewith the second installment of Robert Bryce’s new documentary, “Juice” Power, Politics, and the Grid,” in which he takes up the subject of electricity deregulation in the 1990s and the role of Enron in the California debacle of 2000. I’m not sure I entirely agree with Robert’s narrative of this important policy shift—for one thing, “de-regulation” isn’t really accurate, as it was really a regulatory restructuring—but this episode is worthy »

The Bracing Bryce on the Power Grid

Featured image Our pal Robert Bryce—and if you don’t follow Robert’s Substack, then you don’t follow energy!—is out this week with a new documentary on “Juice: Power, Politics, and the Grid.” Part 1, 18 minutes long, is up for free on YouTube. He begins his story with the crisis of the Texas electricity grid last year and a conversation with Meredith Angwin, and hidden treasure of energy knowledge. Well worth your time »

The Key Idea for Thinking About Energy

Featured image When I teach energy policy, one of the assignments I make to students to to bring to class each week a story about energy in the media and critique it for its incompetence, because about 90 percent of all news articles on energy are incompetent and ignorant. A typical story, irresistible to journalists, is a breathless, gung-ho report on some new energy breakthrough in a lab, like energy from banana »

Electric Vehicles, Cars of the Past

Featured image Many people don’t realize that electric cars have been around for more than 100 years. One might think that the fact they have never caught on is more than a coincidence. Yesterday, Robert Bryce provided testimony on electric vehicles to the Senate’s Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. His testimony is reproduced at his Substack site. It is all worth reading; here is an excerpt: The history of the EV »

What Keeps the Lights On?

Featured image Most of the country is in the grip of a cold snap, and demand for electricity is high. So where is our power coming from? Fossil fuels and nuclear energy. This chart is from the invaluable Grid Brief: America runs on natural gas, coal and nuclear power. Everything else is an afterthought. Note that over the last few days, when demand for electricity has spiked, wind turbines have contributed almost »

Baby, It’s Cold Outside

Featured image It is cold across most of North America, which links these three stories: After Big Tesla Bet, Hertz Selling One-Third of EV Fleet. Hertz is selling about a third of its global electric-vehicle fleet, a major reversal for the rental-car company after it positioned itself as a champion of the technology with plans to vastly grow its fleet of plug-in models. Hertz said Thursday that it would sell about 20,000 »

The Folly of Net Zero

Featured image The Democratic Party is pushing for net zero legislation in the U.S.–demanding that on net, America not contribute to global CO2 emissions. Is this a good idea? We can answer that question because it has been tried, as for example by Great Britain. How has that turned out? Rupert Darwall authored this report for the RealClear Foundation titled “The Folly of Climate Leadership: Net zero and Britain’s disastrous energy policies.” »

Gas Keeps the Lights On

Featured image Grid Brief performs the valuable service of reminding us where our electricity comes from, thus dispelling the fog of misinformation that surrounds “green” energy. This chart shows hourly sources of electricity for the week from December 31 to January 7. It shows that essentially, America runs on natural gas. Coal and nuclear, both cheap and reliable, vie for second place. Hydropower is a useful if relatively minor player. Wind is »

The Golden Age of Coal

Featured image You wouldn’t know it from reading the newspapers, but that is what we are living in. The recently-concluded COP28 conference touted a coming end to the use of fossil fuels, with coal first in line for extinction. But that isn’t happening. Robert Bryce has the data: The [International Energy Agency] expects coal use to rise by 1.4% this year and set a new record of 8.5 billion tons. So more »

COP Who Cares?

Featured image The UN-sponsored COP28 has broken up, and hundreds of private jets are wending their way back to civilization from Dubai. COP28 was the subject of high drama during its closing days. Some said the conference was a disaster; Al Gore, for example: COP28 is now on the verge of complete failure. The world desperately needs to phase out fossil fuels as quickly as possible, but this obsequious draft reads as »

Outside China, Rare Earths Are Rare

Featured image The Chinese Communist Party may be evil, but it isn’t stupid. It has been working on dominating the world’s supply of critical minerals for quite a few years now. Geopolitical Monitor has “A Brief History of US-China Rare Earth Rivalry.” First, a little background: Rare earth elements (REEs), comprising 17 (15 commercially relevant) chemical elements and soft heavy-metals like Thulium and Cerium, are vital in modern technologies from cell phones »