There are many disadvantages to solar energy because it is unavailable most of the day—availability is expressed as capacity factor defined as the fraction of total annual solar energy produced compared to a facility operating 24-hours daily, 365 days per year. Capacity factors of solar plants in Southwest desert areas are 0.19 compared to capacity factors of 0.9 or greater for nuclear and fossil-fueled electricity plants.
“California’s largest utility and environmental groups announced a deal Tuesday [June 21] to shutter the last nuclear power plant in the state.” This statement from the Associated Press reporting about the announced closure of the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant should startle you. The news about shutting down California’s last operating nuclear power plant, especially after Pacific Gas & Electric Co. (PG&E) had sought a 20-year extension of the operating licenses for the two reactors, is disappointing—not startling. What should pique your ire is that the “negotiated proposal,” as the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) called it, is between the utility company and environmental groups—with no mention of the regulators elected to insure that consumers have efficient, effective and economical electricity.
John and Donny continue their exploration of think tanks in episode #43 of the In The Tank Podcast. This weekly podcast features (as always) interviews, debates, and roundtable discussions that explore the work of think tanks across the country. The show is available for download as part of the Heartland Daily Podcast every Friday. Today’s podcast features work from the Rhode Island Center for Freedom and Prosperity, the John Locke Foundation, and the American Enterprise Institute.
In this edition of The Heartland Daily Podcast, Leo Huang, a student of petroleum engineering and a founding member of the Hydraulic Fracturing Public Awareness Committee (Frac PAC) and Heartland Institute Research Fellow Isaac Orr discuss what Frac PAC is, and how they are working to educate people about the oil and gas industry and make a positive impact on the surrounding community.
Any comprehensive review of green energy and its politics and policies has to include the name of wealthy liberal Tom Steyer—who has been called the environmental movement’s new “Daddy Warbucks.” Having made his billions from his tenure atop Farallon Capital Management—much of it from coal projects around the world—Steyer apparently had an environmental epiphany and now wants to atone for his past sins by trying to save the planet from manmade climate change.
Researchers have found that some buyers are willing to pay for environmentally friendly products because those products are “status symbols.” A report in the Atlantic states: “Environmentally-friendly behaviors typically go unseen; there’s no public glory in shortened showers or diligent recycling. But when people can use their behavior to broadcast their own goodness, their incentives shift. The people who buy Priuses and solar panels still probably care about the environment—it’s just that researchers have found that a portion of their motivation might come from a place of self-promotion, much like community service does good and fits on a résumé.”
Separating reality from ideology and political agendas is difficult, but essential, if we are to revitalize our economy and help the world’s poorest families take their rightful places among Earth’s prosperous people. Energy reality is certainly in our favor. But ideological forces are powerful and persistent.
If governments truly believe that man’s production of carbon dioxide causes dangerous global warming, they would ban the use of motor cars, motor trucks, tractors, motor homes, motor bikes, motor mowers, motor launches and petrol-driven chain saws. These all pump out the two dreaded greenhouse gases – carbon dioxide and water vapour. Horses, bullocks, wagons, bicycles, scythes, row-boats and axes are the true-green tools – all were good enough for our pioneers.
A recent USA Today/Rock the Vote survey of millennials shows 80 percent of millennials support transitioning to “mostly clean” or renewable energy by 2030. Although their hearts may be in the right place, few millennials appear to realize how much energy their lifestyle actually consumes, where this energy comes from, and how much it would cost to transition to a nation that’s powered predominantly by renewables by 2030.
America’s abysmal 0.7% economic growth during the fourth quarter of 2015 meant the annual growth rate was an anemic 2.4% … and average annual growth for the six-year Obama era a pathetic 2.2 percent.
Based on the best available scientific evidence, it is highly unlikely continued fossil fuel use will result in catastrophic changes to Earth’s climate or will cause harm to humans or the environment. Despite the available evidence, governments in the United States and other industrialized nations seem intent on pushing the development and use of politically favored renewable energy sources, particularly wind and solar power, through the use of subsidies and mandates.
In today’s edition of The Heartland Daily Podcast, Heartland Vice President of External Relations James Taylor sits down with Managing Editor of Environment & Climate News H. Sterling Burnett. James joins Burnett to discuss the proposed solar amendment in Florida.
(Part 2) In this edition of The Heartland Daily Podcast, Ryan Yonk, Assistant Research Professor in the Department of Economics and Finance at Utah State University and Executive Director of Strata Policy joins Managing Editor of Environment & Climate News, H. Sterling Burnett. Yonk joins Burnett to discuss the environmental impacts, reliability, benefits, and costs of the various renewable energy sources.
In this edition of The Heartland Daily Podcast, Ryan Yonk, Assistant Research Professor in the Department of Economics and Finance at Utah State University and Executive Director of Strata Policy joins Managing Editor of Environment & Climate News, H. Sterling Burnett. Yonk joins Burnett to discuss the environmental impacts, reliability, benefits, and costs of the various renewable energy sources.
Nevada’s casinos and the state’s largest electricity supplier are locked in an escalating conflict, but the Nevada Legislature can turn the impasse into a victory for both parties if it will merely restore economic freedom to electricity markets.
Sustainability issues have been at the center of public discussion in Ohio since 2014, when the state became the first in the nation to freeze its renewable energy mandate. Discussions of state mandates for wind and solar power and policies requiring the use of ethanol in fuels are common in statehouses around the country.
President Barack Obama recently made headlines in Nevada by promoting the “progress” his administration has made in promoting solar power and fighting climate change. Most media outlets conveniently forgot to mention one crucial fact: Without government mandates, subsidies, and sweetheart deals, the sun would quickly set on Obama’s solar empire.
Congress has taken action that actually advances free markets and limits government intrusion. I was in the room when, on September 17, the House Energy and Commerce Committee—with bipartisan support—advanced legislation to lift the 1970s-era ban on crude-oil exports. HR 702, “To adapt to changing crude oil market conditions,” is expected to receive a full floor vote within a matter of weeks.
EMP or ElectroMagnetic Pulse is a disturbance that affects and sometimes destroys electrical and electronic devices. There are two kinds of EMP. A natural EMP is created by a storm on the sun that causes a cloud of particles to be ejected at high speed. If this cloud strikes the Earth it causes a natural EMP. There were important natural EMP’s in 1859, 1921, and 1989.
The Middle East is imploding. Islamic State butchers are annihilating Christian and other communities. Putin is sending arms to Assad. Under the Obama-Iran nuclear deal, the mullahs will get $100+ billion to expand their proxy terror war on Israel and the West. Saudi Arabia has 100,000 empty air-conditioned tents but won’t take any of the millions who’ve been driven from their homes. Neither will most of the other 22 Arab League nations or 57 Organization of Islamic Cooperation member countries.