IMAGINE Our Coronavirus Response Running On Windmills And Mirrors

IMAGINE Our Covid-19 Response Running On Windmills And Mirrors | CLIMATISM

IMAGINE Our Covid-19 Response Running On Windmills And Mirrors | Climatism


Renewable energy technologies simply won’t work;
we need a fundamentally different approach.”

–– Top Google engineers

We get a tax credit if we build a lot of wind farms.
That’s the only reason to build them.
They don’t make sense without the tax credit.

–– Warren Buffett

Suggesting that renewables will let us phase rapidly off fossil fuels
in the United States, China, India, or the world as a whole
is almost the equivalent of believing in the Easter Bunny and Tooth Fairy.

James Hansen
(The Godfather of AGW alarmism / former NASA climate chief)

***

ISN’T it a little strange that a century ago electrification and its fossil fuel source was revered and now so many despise the source but think they can just keep the electricity. No one told them you can not have your cake and eat it too, or that there are no free lunches.

GOOD read by Dr Jay Lehr …

Via PA Pundits – International :

Imagine Our Covid-19 Response Running On Wind And Solar Power

 

By Dr. Jay Lehr ~

UNTIL the Pandemic struck the world, the desire of the progressive political movement in the United States and much of the world was focused on ridding the planet of fossil fuels, said to be negatively altering the planet’s climate. These folks are fully convinced that the world, at its present state of technological advance, could be run entirely on renewable refuels lead by solar and wind power. They have always ignored the intermittency of these sources when the wind does not blow and the sun does not shine. While they know we have no economic method to store such energy, they assume one will come along.

It has been futile yet interesting to continue such a debate in the face of a calm period where conjecture was but an intellectual exercise. Then reality hit us all in the face with a disaster never seen in our life times. Where would the two million Covid-19 afflicted people be who depended on ventilators run by electricity from coal and natural gas be today, if they only had power from the wind and the sun. The obvious answer is that many more would be dead.

While not much good will come from this world wide tragedy, perhaps more of the people deluded by the climate change fear mongering will come to their senses. Eliminating fossil fuels to produce electricity or power automobiles would not support life as we know it today but only life as we knew it a century and a half ago. It may also be time to rename the electric cars, beloved by many, to what they really are, coal, natural gas or nuclear powered cars.

It is a mystery that virtually all the electric car owners believe their power comes magically out of a wall socket at home or a charging station on the road. The power really comes from a nearby power plant all of which burn coal, natural gas or obtain heat from nuclear fuel. Even if the plant gets some energy from local wind turbines or solar photovoltaic cells this amount is minimal. If we really want a huge increase in the number of electric automobiles on the road we must build more fossil fuel burning power plants, not more wind or solar farms.

Perhaps a little history of the electrification of our nation is in order. It was the development of our fossil fuels that made possible the greatest contribution to health and prosperity which was to make electricity affordable everywhere. In 2000 the U.S. National Academy of Engineering (NAE) announced “the 20 engineering achievements that have had the greatest impact on the quality of life in the 20th century”. The achievements were nominated by 29 professional engineering societies and ranked by a distinguished panel of the nation’s top engineers. They ranked electrification as the number one achievement.

It powered almost every pursuit and enterprise in modern society. Aside from lighting the world, it impacted countless areas of daily life including food production and processing, air conditioning, heating, refrigeration, entertainment, transportation, communication, health care and eventually computers.

In the NAE announcement regarding electrification it stated : “One hundred years ago life was a constant struggle against disease, pollution, deforestation, treacherous working conditions and enormous cultural divides ……. By the end of the 20th century, the world had become a healthier, safer and more productive place, primarily because of this engineering achievement”.

Fossil fuels brought electricity to the homes and workplaces of billions of people around the world. Wind and solar power in anyone’s wildest dreams can never support what electricity provided us in these past 148 years since Thomas Edison built the world’s first coal fired generating plant on Pearl Street in New York City in 1882.

Part of our collective problem as to energy and electricity is that technology has past us by. We all once understood how an automobile engine worked, how a home was wired, what a fuse was. When computers and GPS and smart phones came along most of us gave up trying to understand. Many believe there really is a cloud up there keeping our data safe. So why not think electric cars reap the magic from the wall socket and the wind and sun can keep us doing all that we do. And that scientists have high tech crystal balls to tell us the climate decades from now. It should become clear as technology advanced beyond the average persons ability to comprehend, we have actually become dumber. Perhaps being rationally ignorant of things we do not need to know is okay. Unfortunately people in leadership positions are then able to lead us astray. The elimination of fossil fuels is a poor path to follow.

Isn’t it a little strange that a century ago electrification and its fossil fuel source was revered and now so many despise the source but think they can just keep the electricity. No one told them you can not have your cake and eat it too, or that there are no free lunches.

Note: Portions of this article were excerpted from Climate Change Reconsidered II: Fossil Fuels (CCRII: Fossil Fuels), produced by the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC) published by The Heartland Institute, with permission of the editors Joseph Bast and Diane Bast. The authors strongly recommend the book for a complete exposé of the fallacies behind the climate delusion.

Dr Jay Lehr contributes posts at the CFACT site. Jay Lehr is a Senior Policy Analyst with the International Climate Science Coalition, and he is the author of more than 1,000 magazine and journal articles and 36 books.

Read more excellent articles at CFACT  http://www.cfact.org/

(Climatism bolds)

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COVID19 related :

ENERGY related :

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MICHAEL MOORE : ‘Green Energy Is A Scam’

screen-shot-2019-08-07-at-2-40-52-am_orig
Planet of the Humans | By Jeff Gibbs, Executive Producer Michael Moore

“The documentary does a good job
at proving that conservatives
were right to say that green energy is a scam

“This urgent, must-see movie,
a full-frontal assault on our sacred cows,
is guaranteed to generate anger, debate.”

***

A must watch.

IT gets going at around the 13 minute mark, and then, kaboom…

***

UPDATE 26 May 

“It was a bright cold day in April,
 and the clocks were striking thirteen.
George Orwell, 1984

THE Ministry Of Truth has now removed Michael Moore’s original #YouTube release of #PlanetOfTheHumans. It was tracking some 10 million views when shut-down/censored due to a “copyright claim”.

THE complainant, Toby Smith, explains why he is not filled with the obligatory totalitarian streak of the muzzle-ready Leftist …

“I went directly to YouTube rather than approaching the filmmakers because I wasn’t interested in negotiation. I don’t support the documentary, I don’t agree with its message and I don’t like the misleading use of facts in its narrative.”

YOUTUBE boss, @SusanWojcicki agreed and pulled the Moore/Flint docco that thoroughly destroys the “renewable energy” myth.

SUSAN does not trust your judgment or you ability to think for yourself.

Paul Homewood comments, “Regardless of the so-called copyright issues, this is clearly a politically motivated attempt to censor the film, as Toby Smith himself admits.”

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YOU can find the video here on D.Tube :

https://emb.d.tube/#!/skywalker007/QmPQX6ZNzfnJe7XbjrejNv9rcYr1B19voz4NmFrE9iy8dM

 

SEE also :

RELATED :

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CADMIUM : The Toxic Problem Of Not-So-Clean Energy


CADMIUM and its compounds are highly toxic and exposure
to this metal is known to cause cancer and
targets the body’s cardiovascular, renal, gastrointestinal,
neurological, reproductive, and respiratory systems.
–– United State Department of Labor

“IF Greens love nature,
why aren’t they more concerned about
carpeting pristine landscapes with industrial wind turbines and
toxic, non-renewable solar panels?
–– ‘GREEN’ Energy Future | Climatism

***

SKY News Australia’s digital editor Jack Houghton blows the myth of benign, ‘renewable’ energy.

The toxic problem of not-so-clean energy

Digital Editor Jack Houghton

As the world shuns energy sources of old in pursuit of clean alternatives a very toxic problem has been slowly building in the background.

During the construction of solar panels the soft, silver, and highly ductile metal cadmium is compressed between sheets of glass – a vital part of how sunlight is converted into electricity so that environmental leaders like Zali Steggall can charge their hypothetical electric cars.

It is a process that many – who view technology through a tribal lens – consider to be worthy of replacing coal.

The only issue is cadmium is carcinogenic and considered roughly ten times more hazardous than the lead which sits next to it in a typical photovoltaic panel.

Panels which are shattered in storms break into tiny fragments and after several months of rainfall the silver metal which once created energy is transformed into a dangerous health hazard.

Just like the 16,000 wiped out by hurricane Irma in the Virgin Islands in 2017.

The wreckage is pictured above.

If not destroyed by wild weather these panels last about two decades.

After that point much of their construct becomes useless hunks of toxic waste which will collectively weigh 1500 kilotonnes by 2050 in Australia alone.

That figure is roughly 300 times what a nuclear power plant would have created to produce the same energy.

But surely those seeking to radically reform Australia’s energy grid through a Green New Deal must have considered this looming ecological crisis?

Well, no, according to authors of a study released last year titled “Drivers, barriers and enablers to end-of-life management of solar photovoltaic and battery energy storage systems: A systematic literature review”.

As the title suggests the study provided a meta-analysis of 191 research papers into solar panel waste management.

Its findings were damning to say the least.

“Little attention has been paid to the potential environmental and human health related impacts associated with PV systems, if not managed properly at the end-of-life,” the authors wrote.

“PV panel and BESS contain hazardous materials such as lead, lithium, tin and cadmium which can harm the environment and human health if they are not properly managed at the end of life-cycle.

“Exposure of heavy metals embedded in both of these technologies will cause various negative health effects.

“For example, cadmium is associated with its impact on lung, kidney and bone damages once absorbed into the body whilst exposure to lead will cause damages to nervous system.”

The authors even went as far to suggest that the technology should not really be classified as renewable because the issues with waste and the fact many rare minerals cannot be salvaged.

They must be mined again and again.

“The current linear take-make-consume-dispose economic system practised within PV systems will inevitably undermine renewable status of this technology without an effective end of life strategy,” they said.

Questions were also raised about the true CO2 impact of solar panels considering the role mining plays in their formation.

These issues don’t mean solar won’t form a crucial part of Australia’s energy grid.

What they do mean – however – is we must be far more reasoned and cautious before rapidly seeking to switch 81 per cent of our energy grid from fossil fuel sources to emerging technologies.

What is dramatically unhelpful is failed politicians such as Malcolm Turnbull using the tragedy of bushfires to attempt to speed up this process before adequate solutions are found.

“Have we now reached the point where at last our response to global warming will be driven by engineering and economics rather than ideology and idiocy,” he wrote in the Guardian last week.

“Our priority this decade should be our own green new deal in which we generate, as soon as possible, all of our electricity from zero emission sources. 

“If we do, Australia will become a leader in the fight against global warming. And we can do it.”

This process should not be rushed and leaders in the Coalition must resist calls to do so – especially by those who wish to re-write history as environmental saviours.

There are quite incredible solutions to climate change being discussed in academic circles and according to all the science this writer has read – the climate catastrophe is still a long way away.

And there are far bigger fish to fry over in China before we should be despairing about our tiny geo-centric emissions tally.

Let’s pause and reflect before we poison the next generation with the very technology we hope will save it.

The toxic problem of not-so-clean energy | Sky News Australia

*

CONCLUSION

THE obvious question that needs to be answered by UNreliable-energy-obsessed policy makers is this …

Hey @TimWilsonMP why is the RE industry immune from EPA and work place safety regs?

If my business produced this amount of hazardous material I would be fined millions and also do time in the slammer – and rightly so.

via No longer quiet on Twitter (@matthew25496877)

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TOXIC UNreliables related :

UNreliables related :

ENERGY POVERTY related :

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Help us to hit back against the bombardment of climate lies costing our communities, economies and livelihoods far, far too much.

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ENERGY POVERTY UPDATE : Wind & Solar Obsession Causing Skyrocketing Power Prices & Frozen Grannies

“ELDERLY people are dying in their cold homes or being rushed to hospital because they can’t afford to put the heater on.
MORE than 130 people were admitted to NSW emergency departments last winter with cold-related problems including hypothermia, a 34 per cent increase from 10 years ago.
Over the same period power prices have increased by 117 per cent.”

ENOUGH said.

WAKE-UP politicians, addicted to UNreliables to feather their ‘green’ credentials. Enough is enough. @sussanley

STOP THESE THINGS

Australia’s wind and solar obsession has driven power prices through the roof and the poor and elderly to early graves. Staying warm in the depth of winter is no longer just a matter of turning up the dial on the AC, for the poorest and most vulnerable it’s a daily battle for survival.

In the space of a decade, power prices have doubled and so too the number of households disconnected from the grid; because they can no longer afford to pay their bills.

A generation ago, Australians enjoyed the world’s cheapest power prices; thanks to its suicidal renewable energy policies, they now suffer among the highest.

That all of this was perfectly predictable, and perfectly avoidable, makes it all the more outrageous. Here’s Peta Credlin expressing just that.

‘What a joke’ that Australians are ‘too frightened to turn on appliances’
Sky news
Peta Credlin, Luke Grant and Jeremy Cordeaux

View original post 1,282 more words


WARREN BUFFETT Rejects All-Renewable Future With $10 Billion Bet on Oil & Gas

STOP THESE THINGS

Australian voters just shredded the notion that the proletariat is wedded to heavily subsidised and chaotically intermittent wind and solar.

Labor’s Bill Shorten sought to ram a 50% Renewable Energy Target down voter’s throats; a concept which the vast majority of them duly rejected.

Sure, there were plenty of other issues that sank the Green/Labor Alliance. However, it should be remembered that 2019 was billed as the ‘Climate Change Election’, with wind and solar pitched up as the only panacea to what has now become a ‘climate emergency’.

Pundits professed, with great certitude, the notion that the Australian public just can’t get enough intermittent, unreliable and unaffordable electricity. Well, that didn’t quite pan out. Bill Shorten slunk off the political stage, a wounded and embittered hero of renewable energy zealots and rent seekers, alike.

Another part of the meme was that the markets had already turned their back on fossil…

View original post 1,112 more words


SCIENCE : UNreliable Nature Of Solar And Wind Makes Electricity More Expensive, New Study Finds

UNreliables - CLIMATISM - Shellenberger.png


“REMEMBER when we paved the world with electronic waste
that chopped eagles and condors and made bats extinct
because we thought wind was natural and uranium evil?

– man that was a dark age!”
– Michael Shellenberger

***

ONE of the great falsehoods and dangerous myths pushed by reckless global warming climate change zealots and the mainstream media is that ‘renewable energy’ – wind and solar – is “clean, green and renewable”.

‘RENEWABLES’ are neither “clean, green, or renewable”. In fact, they are pure embodiments of fossil fuel technology, with oil and “dirty” coal derivatives required for :

SEE :

*

ANOTHER excellent article of reason and sanity written by man-made “global warming” believer and environmentalist, Michael Shellenberger.

POLITICIANS, please take note. Sanity and reason, that has given us so much ‘hope’, really does need needs to prevail, once again…

***

Via Forbes :

(Climatism bolds)

Unreliable Nature Of Solar And Wind Makes Electricity More Expensive, New Study Finds

UNreliables - CLIMATISM - Shellenberger

Wind turbines in Penonome, Panama. (Credit: Associated Press)

Solar panels and wind turbines are making electricity significantly more expensive, a major new study by a team of economists from the University of Chicago finds.

Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) “significantly increase average retail electricity prices, with prices increasing by 11% (1.3 cents per kWh) seven years after the policy’s passage into law and 17% (2 cents per kWh) twelve years afterward,” the economists write.

The study, which has yet to go through peer-review, was done by Michael Greenstone, Richard McDowell, and Ishan Nath. It compared states with and without an RPS. It did so using what the economists say is “the most comprehensive state-level dataset ever compiled” which covered 1990 to 2015.

The cost to consumers has been staggeringly high: “All in all, seven years after passage, consumers in the 29 states had paid $125.2 billion more for electricity than they would have in the absence of the policy,” they write.

Last year, I was the first journalist to report that solar and wind are making electricity more expensive in the United States — and for inherently physical reasons.

Solar and wind require that natural gas plants, hydro-electric dams, batteries or some other form of reliable power be ready at a moment’s notice to start churning out electricity when the wind stops blowing and the sun stops shining, I noted.

And unreliability requires solar- and/or wind-heavy places like Germany, California, and Denmark to pay neighboring nations or states to take their solar and wind energy when they are producing too much of it.

My reporting was criticized — sort of — by those who claimed I hadn’t separated correlation from causation, but the new study by a top-notch team of economists, including an advisor to Barack Obama, proves I was right.

Previous studies were misleading, the economists note, because they didn’t “incorporate three key costs,” which are the unreliability of renewables, the large amounts of land they require, and the displacement of cheaper “baseload” energy sources like nuclear plants.

The higher cost of electricity reflects “the costs that renewables impose on the generation system,” the economists note, “including those associated with their intermittency, higher transmission costs, and any stranded asset costs assigned to ratepayers.”

But are renewables cost-effective climate policy? They are not. The economists write that “the cost per metric ton of CO2 abated exceeds $130 in all specifications and ranges up to $460, making it at least several times larger than conventional estimates of the social cost of carbon.”

The economists note that the Obama Administration’s core estimate of the social cost of carbon was $50 per ton in 2019 dollars, while the price of carbon is just $5 in the US northeast’s Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), and $15 in California’s cap-and-trade system.

Michael Shellenberger, President, Environmental Progress. Time Magazine “Hero of the Environment.”

I am a Time Magazine “Hero of the Environment,” Green Book Award Winner, and President of Environmental Progress, a research and policy organization. My writings have ap…

Read More

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SEE also :

UNreliables related :

U.N. Energy Poverty / Climate Hoax related :

ENERGY POVERTY related :

STATE Of The Climate Report :

IPCC Extreme Weather Report 2018 SR15 :

EXTREME WEATHER Related :

TEMPERATURE Related :

ORIGINS Of The Global Warming Scam :

•••

THE Climatism Tip Jar – Pls Help Keep The Good Fight Alive!

(Climate sceptics/rationalists still waitin’ for that “big oil” cheque to arrive in the mail!)

Help us to hit back against the bombardment of climate lies costing our communities, economies and livelihoods far, far too much.

Thanks to all those who have donated. Your support and faith in Climatism is highly motivating and greatly appreciated!

Citizen journalists can’t rely on mastheads, rather private donations and honest content. Every pledge helps!

Click link for more info…

Thank You! Jamie.

Donate with PayPal

•••


NOW That We Know Renewables Can’t ‘Save The Planet’, Are We Really Going To Stand By And Let Them Destroy It?


“REMEMBER when we paved the world with electronic waste
that chopped eagles and condors and made bats extinct
because we thought wind was natural and uranium evil?

– man that was a dark age!”
– Michael Shellenberger

***

ONE of the great falsehoods and dangerous myths pushed by reckless global warming climate change zealots and the mainstream media is that ‘renewable energy’ – wind and solar – is “clean, green and renewable”.

‘RENEWABLES’ are neither “clean, green, or renewable”. In fact, they are pure embodiments of fossil fuel technology, with oil and coal derivatives required for :

SEE : WHAT I See When I See a Wind Turbine | Climatism

*

LAND INTENSITY

WIND and solar power are incredibly land intensive owing to the inherent low-energy density of their electrons. And, the small fact that the sun only shines and the wind only blows 10-40% of the time.

HOW much land and how many wind turbines would be needed just to supply the planets ‘new’ demand for energy?

If wind turbines were to supply all of that growth but no more, how many would need to be built each year? The answer is nearly 350,000, since a two-megawatt turbine can produce about 0.005 terawatt-hours per annum. That’s one-and-a-half times as many as have been built in the world since governments started pouring consumer funds into this so-called industry in the early 2000s.

At a density of, very roughly, 50 acres per megawatt, typical for wind farms, that many turbines would require a land area greater than the British Isles, including Ireland. Every year. If we kept this up for 50 years, we would have covered every square mile of a land area the size of Russia with wind farms. Remember, this would be just to fulfil the new demand for energy, not to displace the vast existing supply of energy from fossil fuels, which currently supply 80 per cent of global energy needs.

WIND TURBINES Are Neither Clean Nor Green And They Provide Zero Global Energy | Climatism

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NATURE LOVERS?

IF Greens love nature, why aren’t they more concerned about carpeting pristine landscapes with industrial wind turbines?

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“SAVING THE PLANET”

IF ‘Greens’ were serious about “Saving The Planet”, they would be embracing (CO2-free) nuclear energy.

THE fact that they are not, says a lot about today’s New Green Climate Warrior – concerned more about totalitarian power and control than tangible care of the physical environment.

IMHO, ‘Climate Change’ has absolutely nothing to do with the environment or “Saving The Planet”. If it did, every global warming climate change bedwetter would be castigating China for unlimited emissions until 2030.

CLIMATE CHANGE activism has everything to do with economic, political and cultural power and control.

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NUCLEAR POWER

THIS brilliant piece from (old-school) environmentalist Michael Shellenberger has been touring social and mainstream media in a big way, and rightly so, but wanted to pin it here for Climatism followers to enjoy and hopefully share with friends, family and their local energy/environment representative!

From Quillette :

Why Renewables Can’t Save the Planet

When I was a boy, my parents would sometimes take my sister and me camping in the desert. A lot of people think deserts are empty, but my parents taught us to see the wildlife all around us, including hawks, eagles, and tortoises.

After college, I moved to California to work on environmental campaigns. I helped save the state’s last ancient redwood forest and blocked a proposed radioactive waste repository set for the desert.

In 2002, shortly after I turned 30, I decided I wanted to dedicate myself to addressing climate change. I was worried that global warming would end up destroying many of the natural environments that people had worked so hard to protect.

I thought the solutions were pretty straightforward: solar panels on every roof, electric cars in every driveway, etc. The main obstacles, I believed, were political. And so I helped organize a coalition of America’s largest labor unions and environmental groups. Our proposal was for a $300 billion dollar investment in renewables. We would not only prevent climate change but also create millions of new jobs in a fast-growing high-tech sector.

Our efforts paid off in 2007 when then-presidential candidate Barack Obama embraced our vision. Between 2009–15, the U.S. invested $150 billion dollars in renewables and other forms of clean tech. But right away we ran into trouble.

The first was around land use. Electricity from solar roofs costs about twice as much as electricity from solar farms, but solar and wind farms require huge amounts of land. That, along with the fact that solar and wind farms require long new transmissions lines, threatened local communities, and conservationists trying to preserve wildlife, particularly birds.

Another challenge was the intermittent nature of solar and wind energies. When the sun stops shining and the wind stops blowing, you have to quickly be able to ramp up another source of energy.

Happily, there were a lot of people working on solutions. One solution was to convert California’s dams into big batteries. The idea was that, when the sun was shining and the wind was blowing, you could pump water uphill, store it for later, and then run it over the turbines to make electricity when you needed it.

Other problems didn’t seem like such a big deal, on closer examination. For example, after I learned that house cats kill billions of birds every year it put into perspective the nearly one million birds killed by wind turbines.

It seemed to me that most, if not all, of the problems from scaling up solar and wind energies could be solved through more technological innovation.

But, as the years went by, the problems persisted and in some cases grew worse. For example, California is a world leader when it comes to renewables but we haven’t converted our dams into batteries, partly for geographic reasons. You need the right kind of dam and reservoirs, and even then it’s an expensive retrofit.

A bigger problem is that there are many other uses for the water that accumulates behind dams, namely irrigation and cities. And because the water in our rivers and reservoirs is scarce and unreliable, the water from dams for those other purposes is becoming ever-more precious.

Without large-scale ways to back-up solar energy California has had to block electricity coming from solar farms when it’s extremely sunny, or pay neighboring states to take it from us so we can avoid blowing-out our grid.

Despite what you’ve heard, there is no “battery revolution” on the way, for well-understood technical and economic reasons.

As for house cats, they don’t kill big, rare, threatened birds. What house cats kill are small, common birds, like sparrows, robins and jays. What kills big, threatened, and endangered birds—birds that could go extinct—like hawks, eagles, owls, and condors, are wind turbines.

In fact, wind turbines are the most serious new threat to important bird species to emerge in decades. The rapidly spinning turbines act like an apex predator which big birds never evolved to deal with.

Solar farms have similarly large ecological impacts. Building a solar farm is a lot like building any other kind of farm. You have to clear the whole area of wildlife.

In order to build one of the biggest solar farms in California the developers hired biologists to pull threatened desert tortoises from their burrows, put them on the back of pickup trucks, transport them, and cage them in pens where many ended up dying.

As we were learning of these impacts, it gradually dawned on me that there was no amount of technological innovation that could solve the fundamental problem with renewables.

You can make solar panels cheaper and wind turbines bigger, but you can’t make the sun shine more regularly or the wind blow more reliably. I came to understand the environmental implications of the physics of energy. In order to produce significant amounts of electricity from weak energy flows, you just have spread them over enormous areas. In other words, the trouble with renewables isn’t fundamentally technical—it’s natural.

Dealing with energy sources that are inherently unreliable, and require large amounts of land, comes at a high economic cost.

There’s been a lot of publicity about how solar panels and wind turbines have come down in cost. But those one-time cost savings from making them in big Chinese factories have been outweighed by the high cost of dealing with their unreliability.

Consider California. Between 2011–17 the cost of solar panels declined about 75 percent, and yet our electricity prices rose five times more than they did in the rest of the U.S. It’s the same story in Germany, the world leader in solar and wind energy. Its electricity prices increased 50 percent between 2006–17, as it scaled up renewables.

I used to think that dealing with climate change was going to be expensive. But I could no longer believe this after looking at Germany and France.

Germany’s carbon emissions have been flat since 2009, despite an investment of $580 billion by 2025 in a renewables-heavy electrical grid, a 50 percent rise in electricity cost.

Climatism support :

SEE also : IF CO2’s Your Poison, Renewable Energy Is No Antidote | Climatism

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Meanwhile, France produces one-tenth the carbon emissions per unit of electricity as Germany and pays little more than half for its electricity. How? Through nuclear power.

Then, under pressure from Germany, France spent $33 billion on renewables, over the last decade. What was the result? A rise in the carbon intensity of its electricity supply, and higher electricity prices, too.

What about all the headlines about expensive nuclear and cheap solar and wind? They are largely an illusion resulting from the fact that 70 to 80 percent of the costs of building nuclear plants are up-front, whereas the costs given for solar and wind don’t include the high cost of transmission lines, new dams, or other forms of battery.

It’s reasonable to ask whether nuclear power is safe, and what happens with its waste.

It turns out that scientists have studied the health and safety of different energy sources since the 1960s. Every major study, including a recent one by the British medical journal Lancet, finds the same thing: nuclear is the safest way to make reliable electricity.

Strange as it sounds, nuclear power plants are so safe for the same reason nuclear weapons are so dangerous. The uranium used as fuel in power plants and as material for bombs can create one million times more heat per its mass than its fossil fuel and gunpowder equivalents.

It’s not so much about the fuel as the process. We release more energy breaking atoms than breaking chemical bonds. What’s special about uranium atoms is that they are easy to split.

Because nuclear plants produce heat without fire, they emit no air pollution in the form of smoke. By contrast, the smoke from burning fossil fuels and biomass results in the premature deaths of seven million people per year, according to the World Health Organization.

Even during the worst accidents, nuclear plants release small amounts of radioactive particulate matter from the tiny quantities of uranium atoms split apart to make heat.

Over an 80-year lifespan, fewer than 200 people will die from the radiation from the worst nuclear accident, Chernobyl, and zero will die from the small amounts of radiant particulate matter that escaped from Fukushima.

As a result, the climate scientist James Hanson and a colleague found that nuclear plants have actually saved nearly two million lives to date that would have been lost to air pollution.

Thanks to its energy density, nuclear plants require far less land than renewables. Even in sunny California, a solar farm requires 450 times more land to produce the same amount of energy as a nuclear plant.

Energy-dense nuclear requires far less in the way of materials, and produces far less in the way of waste compared to energy-dilute solar and wind.

A single Coke cans worth of uranium provides all of the energy that the most gluttonous American or Australian lifestyle requires. At the end of the process, the high-level radioactive waste that nuclear plants produce is the very same Coke can of (used) uranium fuel. The reason nuclear is the best energy from an environmental perspective is because it produces so little waste and none enters the environment as pollution.

All of the waste fuel from 45 years of the Swiss nuclear program can fit, in canisters, on a basketball court-like wearhouse, where like all spent nuclear fuel, it has never hurt a fly.

By contrast, solar panels require 17 times more materials in the form of cement, glass, concrete, and steel than do nuclear plants, and create over 200 times more waste.

We tend to think of solar panels as clean, but the truth is that there is no plan anywhere to deal with solar panels at the end of their 20 to 25 year lifespan.

Experts fear solar panels will be shipped, along with other forms of electronic waste, to be disassembled—or, more often, smashed with hammers—by poor communities in Africa and Asia, whose residents will be exposed the dust from toxic including lead, cadmium, and chromium.

Wherever I travel in the world I ask ordinary people what they think about nuclear and renewable energies. After saying they know next to nothing, they admit that nuclear is strong and renewables are weak. Their intuitions are correct. What most of us get wrong—understandably — is that weak energies are safer.

But aren’t renewables safer? The answer is no. Wind turbines, surprisingly, kill more people than nuclear plants.

In other words, the energy density of the fuel determines its environmental and health impacts. Spreading more mines and more equipment over larger areas of land is going to have larger environmental and human safety impacts.

It’s true that you can stand next to a solar panel without much harm while if you stand next to a nuclear reactor at full power you’ll die.

But when it comes to generating power for billions of people, it turns out that producing solar and wind collectors, and spreading them over large areas, has vastly worse impacts on humans and wildlife alike.

Our intuitive sense that sunlight is dilute sometimes shows up in films. That’s why nobody was shocked when the recent remake of the dystopian sci-fi flick, “Blade Runner,” opened with a dystopian scene of California’s deserts paved with solar farms identical to the one that decimated desert tortoises.

Over the last several hundred years, human beings have been moving away from what matter-dense fuels towards energy-dense ones. First we move from renewable fuels like wood, dung, and windmills, and towards the fossil fuels of coal, oil, and natural gas, and eventually to uranium.

Energy progress is overwhelmingly positive for people and nature. As we stop using wood for fuel we allow grasslands and forests to grow back, and the wildlife to return.

As we stop burning wood and dung in our homes, we no longer must breathe toxic indoor smoke. And as we move from fossil fuels to uranium we clear the outdoor air of pollution, and reduce how much we’ll heat up the planet.

Nuclear plants are thus a revolutionary technology—a grand historical break from fossil fuels as significant as the industrial transition from wood to fossil fuels before it.

The problem with nuclear is that it is unpopular, a victim of a 50 year-longconcerted effort by fossil fuel, renewable energy, anti-nuclear weapons campaigners, and misanthropic environmentalists to ban the technology.

In response, the nuclear industry suffers battered wife syndrome, and constantly apologizes for its best attributes, from its waste to its safety.

Lately, the nuclear industry has promoted the idea that, in order to deal with climate change, “we need a mix of clean energy sources,” including solar, wind and nuclear. It was something I used to believe, and say, in part because it’s what people want to hear. The problem is that it’s not true.

France shows that moving from mostly nuclear electricity to a mix of nuclear and renewables results in more carbon emissions, due to using more natural gas, and higher prices, to the unreliability of solar and wind.

Oil and gas investors know this, which is why they made a political alliance with renewables companies, and why oil and gas companies have been spending millions of dollars on advertisements promoting solar, and funneling millions of dollars to said environmental groups to provide public relations cover.

What is to be done? The most important thing is for scientists and conservationists to start telling the truth about renewables and nuclear, and the relationship between energy density and environmental impact.

Bat scientists recently warned that wind turbines are on the verge of making one species, the Hoary bat, a migratory bat species, go extinct.

Another scientist who worked to build that gigantic solar farm in the California desert told High Country News, “Everybody knows that translocation of desert tortoises doesn’t work. When you’re walking in front of a bulldozer, crying, and moving animals, and cacti out of the way, it’s hard to think that the project is a good idea.”

I think it’s natural that those of us who became active on climate change gravitated toward renewables. They seemed like a way to harmonize human society with the natural world. Collectively, we have been suffering from a naturalistic fallacy no different from the one that leads us to buy products at the supermarket labeled “all natural.” But it’s high time that those of us who appointed ourselves Earth’s guardians should take a second look at the science, and start questioning the impacts of our actions.

Now that we know that renewables can’t save the planet, are we really going to stand by and let them destroy it?

Michael Shellenberger is a Time Magazine “Hero of the Environment,” and president of Environmental Progress, an independent research and policy organization. Follow him on Twitter @ShellenbergerMD

Why Renewables Can’t Save the Planet – Quillette

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