Wind and solar energy are both essentially obsolete technologies. There is a reason why only the very rich or the very adventurous sail across oceans: the wind is unreliable, and at best produces relatively little energy. Nevertheless, liberals have concocted fantasies whereby all of our electricity, or perhaps our entire economy, will be powered by those fickle sources.
There are a number of reasons why this will never happen, but a paper published last week by Center of the American Experiment argues that land use constraints are the most basic reason why wind and solar are inexorably destined to fail. The paper, titled Not In Our Backyard, is authored by internationally recognized energy expert Robert Bryce, producer of the terrific documentary Juice: How Electricity Explains The World and the book A Question of Power: Electricity and the Wealth of Nations
Because wind and solar produce so little energy per square mile, an enormous amount of land would have to be devoted to panels and turbines if we seriously tried to get all of our present electricity needs from those weak sources:
Miller and Keith determined that “meeting present-day U.S. electricity consumption, for example, would require 12 percent of the continental U.S. land area for wind.” A bit of math reveals what that 12 percent figure means. The land area of the continental U.S. is about 2.9 million square miles, or 7.6 million square kilometers. Twelve percent of that area would be about 350,000 square miles or 912,000 square kilometers. Therefore, merely meeting America’s current electricity needs with wind energy would require a territory more than two times the size of California.
Suffice to say that this just isn’t going to happen.
For one thing, no one places wind farms in Washington, D.C. or midtown Manhattan. Nor are wind projects slated for Long Island, Marin County, or near any valuable suburban developments. It is rural America that bears the burden of many square miles of wind and solar installations.
“Green” energy holds political sway, which has made a relative handful of people (largely non-Americans and lobbyists) immensely wealthy, while impoverishing utility rate payers and taxpayers–that is to say, the rest of us. This insanity will continue until voters wise up, or–more likely, I am afraid–until the laws of physics, along with land use and raw materials constraints, make it blindingly obvious that the “green dream” is just that. A nightmare.
If you need a bit of a giggle, not to mention some informative bricks to throw at certain people, you need to occasionally check in on the Extinction Clock.
Blog it, Gab it, Fakebook it, Twitter it, email it to green-inclined folk you know. This is absolutely perfect for dinner party discussions and family gatherings as well, as you do not need to explain it, just get them to read it and stand back with a smug expression saying nothing
Source: If you need a bit of a giggle…
While the black surfaces of solar panels absorb most of the sunlight that reaches them, only a fraction (around 15%) of that incoming energy gets converted to electricity. The rest is returned to the environment as heat. The panels are usually much darker than the ground they cover, so a vast expanse of solar cells…Solar panels in Sahara could boost renewable energy but damage the global climate – here’s why — Watts Up With That?
In addition, both solar panels and wind turbines have the potential of bringing rain to the desert. This is a problem because forest has a lower albedo than desert does. It’s darker, so it absorbs more heat.
I guess the answer to global warming might be to turn the Amazon forest into desert.
SNOWFALLS ARE NOW JUST A THING OF THE PAST: John Kerry says Earth has 9 years to avert the worst consequences of climate crisis: “There’s no faking it on this one.” Flashbacks: John Kerry: False Prophet of the Climate Apocalypse .
I think Edgar Cayce was notorious for predicting the rise of Atlantis from the depths, in several different years depending on which edition of his book you read.
The possibility of climate lockdowns is already being floated by some of our greatest thinkers. They see a confluence of global crises as an opportunity. The perfect storm caused by COVID-19 and the resulting global economic meltdown offers a chance to take what they see as bold and dramatic action to save the planet. The Biden administration will certainly use the consequences of COVID to push through some green legislation, but just as before, it will not be enough in the eyes of progressives. There must always be more.
Mariana Mazzucato, an author and a professor in innovative economics at the University of London, raised the prospect of climate lockdowns in MarketWatch last September:
‘Under a “climate lockdown”, governments would limit private-vehicle use, ban consumption of red meat, and impose extreme energy-saving measures, while fossil-fuel companies would have to stop drilling. To avoid such a scenario, we must overhaul our economic structures and do capitalism differently.’
Bjorn Lomborg bucks the trend.
The new United Nations report is being talked about as though it portends the end of the world: To avoid catastrophe, we must instantly transform the entire economy no matter the costs.
This is unjustified. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), in its latest major global analysis, estimated that the total impact of unmitigated climate change from extreme weather, changes in agriculture, rising sea levels and so on would be equivalent to reducing the average person’s income by between 0.2 and 2 percent in the 2070s. [Box 3.1, file page 95.]
Link to the IPCC report where this number may be found. It may be a made-up number, but neither Lomborg nor I made it up.
Assuming 3% annual income growth over 50 years (2020-2070) gives us a 438% increase in income. So cutting that by 2% means the average person would see only a 430% increase over half a century.
Yesterday, The United Nations released its Emissions Gap Report 2020, an annual assessment of contributions to greenhouse gas and carbon emissions. The report has some notable information amid an array of complicated projections that may or may not come true. It claims, for instance, that “despite a brief dip in carbon dioxide emissions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the world is still heading for a temperature rise.”
But for the United States, the real value in this report is as an advisory that it need not join the Paris Climate Accord. This report is evidence that, instead, the U.S. should just keep doing what it is doing to cut its own emissions. The U.S. is the most successful major country at mitigating its own pollution, and the U.N. shows this.
By the way, drafts of Biden’s plans released so far has him doing almost the polar opposite of every step I suggest. The cancellation of individual pipeline projects is just stupid political micro-managing to absolutely no benefit. (First published September, 2018)
While I am not deeply worried about man-made climate change, I am appalled at all the absolutely stupid, counter-productive things the government has implemented in the name of climate change, all of which have costly distorting effects on the economy while doing extremely little to affect man-made greenhouse gas production.
Review of Not for Greens, by Ian Plimer (Connor Court Publishing, 2014).
In this entirely excellent book, Prof. Plimer answers three questions: What do geologists bring to the debate over climate change? What do environmentalists (“greens”) do that benefits either the environment or humanity? What would happen to the environment and to humanity if we outlawed the use of fossil fuels?
Regarding the first question, Plimer brilliantly explains why geologists, and only geologists, understand the history of climate change dating back to Earth’s creation; its myriad causes, cycles, and effects on weather and life on Earth; how today’s climate both differs from and is the same as climates past; and what role, if any, human activity (including the combustion of fossil fuels) may play in all of that.
Briefly put, geologists were studying climate change long before physicists started to speculate about the effects of carbon dioxide on temperatures. Geologists understand that changes in weather and average temperatures in recent decades pale into insignificance compared to changes on scales of millions, thousands, and even hundreds of years. As importantly, geologists know what we don’t know about the movement of carbon dioxide between reservoirs (terrestrial, oceanic, and atmospheric) and the effects of solar cycles and changes in ocean currents on temperature, precipitation, sea level, and life itself.
Suppose you go to your doctor, and he tells you you’re a week from an infarction that’s going to cause your heart to explode and kill you. You do fine, with a bit of stress and tension. Six months later he tells you you’re only three days away. Then it’s two weeks. Then it’s nine days, then three days again, and eventually, it’s 60 years later, and he says you also have a serious liver issue and only four days to live. And 13 years after that, 73 since he started pestering you, you’re STILL alive.
Hopefully long before then, you’d realize this “doctor” was completely full of shit and had no fucking clue what he was blathering about.Sacred Cow Slaughterhouse
Features guest appearances by Paul Ehrlich, who apparently still thinks global mass starvation is in the cards, and lots of articles about the coming ice age.