Perry: The U.S. Will Give The World “A Better Life Through Fossil Fuels”

440px-Rick_Perry_official_portraitWith much of the world desperately trying to rid itself of fossil fuels to avoid disaster from climate change, the Trump Administration at times seems to be on a different planet.  That seems the case at the Davos conference where Energy Secretary Rick Perry proclaimed that the United States is “blessed” to be able to offer the world “a better quality of life through fossil fuels.”  Not only our closest allies like Germany and England have been making huge efforts to drop fossil fuels, but China is moving aggressively to avoid this “better world” model.

Appearing with Saudi Arabia Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih and Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak on a panel, Perry stated “We are blessed to be in countries with a substantial ability to deliver the people of the globe a better quality of life through fossil fuels.”

The United States is increasing views as the “spoiler” in the global effort to curtail pollution and climate change.  Statements like Perry’s only reaffirms the image of the United States as the outlier on this global crisis.

Perry’s controversial comments comes as France announced that it will also set a deadline for phasing out coal fired plants for 2021.

Other Western countries have been adopting similar goals and many have made strides in converting to non-fossil fuel energy production, as we have been discussing.

235 thoughts on “Perry: The U.S. Will Give The World “A Better Life Through Fossil Fuels”

    • The EPA had gone beyond the Clean Air Act. The memo released by the Trump Administration held it to the literal language of the act. As we know, if an act is not sufficient, it is Congress’s job, and not any President or Agency, to change it.

      Here is the crux of the issue, as I understand it: The Clean Air Act considered any company that emitted 10 tons or more of any one toxic chemical, or 25 tons or more of any combination of toxic chemicals, as defined by the act, as a “major” emitter. In that category, companies must use “maximum achievable control technology” (MACT) to reduce pollution.

      The EPA interpreted that in a “once in, always in” approach. That means that if a company reduced its emissions below the threshold of a major emitter, it didn’t matter. It would always be considered “major” regardless of its actual emissions. It would essentially be in the same category as a company who did not succeed in reducing its emissions.

      The concern that emissions will increase would be addressed by the Clean Air Act. The act itself has not been repealed.

      That’s not what the Clear Air Act says, as I understand it. The EPA is rather infamous for overreaching its bounds. (Refer to it now considering any ditch in a farmer’s field a “navigable waterway ephemeral stream” for permitting processes.)

      Rather than be angry at a President for requiring any agency to follow the letter of the law, change the law if you don’t like it. It’s a really simple solution. Really, it’s like the Democratic Party does not know how to function using a representative government rather than fiat.

      I have tried to explain this phenomenon to weaponized environmentalists for years: if you make a weapon out of the EPA, or similar agencies, there will be pushback. And you won’t like it. And that pushback may go farther than is fair and create more problems. Another example is that environmental groups such as The Sierra Club have thrown away all pretense of inclusion and non bias, and their publications openly read like a Democratic PAC. The entire publication, from cover to cover, repeatedly bashes the Republican party in general and any Republican Administration specifically. This drives away environmentally conscious Independents, Libertarians, and Republicans, which obviously undermines the efforts of environmental policy. You can’t exactly pass what you want when you’ve alienated half the country, now can you? The EPA has snatched land, devalued land, and pretended that a ditch a farmer digs is a navigable stream. There are consequences to that behavior. When it goes so far, it will be firmly pushed back. And if it becomes yet another weaponized arm of the American government, aimed against conservatives, you run the very real risk that one day it will be dissolved to start anew.

      Personally, I would be perfectly find if everyone was cleared out, and they put butts in seats who were unbiased regarding politics, and who respected the rules and limits of the law. I also would like to see a more cooperative relationship between government agencies and the agricultural community.

      Here’s another case in point: Where I live, the permitting agencies have been going to people’s ranches and declaring that the buildings are not to code, and it doesn’t matter that they were already present when the property was purchased. They require footings 4 or 5 feet deep, able to withstand a hurricane. In a drought state. I know someone who built a single horse shelter to code, and she spent around $10,000. For a shelter for one single horse.

      Government has turned into a nonthinking club. If you aren’t poor, or a big donor to the ruling Democratic Party, you’re on the other end of that club.

  1. Those actually interested in climate are encouraged to read “The Discovery of Global Warming” by Spencer Weart and available online in an extended edition.

    Those interested in the mid-Pliocene hypothesis of future global warming are encouraged to start with the Wikipedia page on Pliocene climate.

    I am going to ignore the diversionists, who bring nothing but babble to the detriment of the coherence of the thread.

    • The diversionists are those that are looking at more than one side of the coin. Your belief is respected, but you show no respect towards those that do not believe like you. Climate is not well understood so there are a variety of opinions even among those that seem to conform to one opinion.

      You demonstrated your lack of careful observation by your analysis of the violin study old vs modern violins. You don’t seem to understand the elements that a good study needs to have and you don’t understand that like climate change many of the opinions lumped into one opinion are not the same.

      To you coherence is conformity so anyone that doesn’t agree with you is suddenly a detriment. That is nonsense. Now all the little soldiers can practice marching at David’s cadence in a single file never observing the world around them.

      • Allan,…
        -As the Oracle of the Palouse Country, Mr. Benson does not feel the need to show any respect toward those who question his conclusions, and climate prophesies.

      • Isn’t it incredibly arrogant to assume that we know all there is to know about climate and can predict it out over the course of generations but can’t get the daily forecast correct?

        I wonder if the advent of the Weather Channel and associated apps contributes to all this. Weather – at least for some – is an obsession. I’m old enough to remember getting your weather news during the mornng and evening news twice a day. Whatever happened between the two was whatever happened. Today the Weather Channel is just like MTV – a little bit of weather and a whole lotta baby mama drama over unique weather events.

        • According to the World Meteorological Organization, climate is 30 years or more of weather data. Learn some statistics to understand why.

          • Refer back to what I just said. You David cite 30 years as enumerated by the World Meteorological Society (WMS). The planet is millions of years old if not billions. How then can we and the WMS pretend to know the climate? Shall I predict the course of the economy until the year 4752?

            • Try reading Weart to see if your questions are answered.

              By the way, it is the WMO. Try to at least get the name right.

          • There is a reason that senior scientists appear arrogant; they actually know something after a lifetime of study and often have little patience with those who can’t be bothered to read an introductory text.

            • There are reasons more specific to you….when you frequently come acrossed as a pompous, arrogant clown, you risk being called arrogant.
              That applies whether you are a senile scientist or not.

            • David Benson – senior scientists need to learn humility. This is why major universities have been have senior scientists teach 101 courses. Learn to deal with the little people.

                  • Paul Schulte,..
                    I don’t think Mr. Benson understands the difference between a comments thread, and a classroom where he van,behave as if he’s holding court.
                    People who ask questions here prefer answers, not a list of reading assignmements.
                    I don’t object to links or citations, but when the answer is repeatedly “read this”, or “read that”, it gets old.
                    In some cases, dodging a question by handing out teading assignments might be another way of avoiding an answer of “I don’t know”.
                    Most people unstand and accept that answer, but I don’t think those words are in Benson’s vocabulary.

                    • “Allan, a good theory explains the facts.”

                      David, it remains a theory. That means more research is needed and other theories need to be considered.

                      A good theory might correlate with the facts, but it isn’t necessarily causational.

      • Allan, science is not a matter of belief but of explaining experiments and observations. Read Weart and then get back to me about climatology, not divergences.

        • That’s what I keep telling you David and that is why I discussed the violin study you talked about. You don’t understand how studies are done or the elements involved. Read a simple book on how experiments work and then reread your preference with a scientific eye not the eye of an inexperienced kid.

            • David, everyone experiments. I don’t claim you didn’t rather you don’t understand the elements required to either perform a good study or to adequately understand what a study says. Your violin flub shows it all in a simple package. Your obstinance to recognize the multiplicity of valid opinions regarding climate change demonstrates a lack of flexibility that can only lead to ignorance.

                • “There is only one valid opinion. It explains the facts.”

                  So said the Pope. The earth is flat.

                  As I said earlier, ” You don’t understand how studies are done or the elements involved. Read a simple book on how experiments work and then reread your preference with a scientific eye not the eye of an inexperienced kid.”

                  Do you know who else believes that there is only one valid opinion? Dictators.

        • Mr. Benson, …
          As long as we’re handing out reading assignments on this thread, read the works of John Holdren, then get back to me.

            • Mr. Benson,..
              It is of interest in the study oc climatology when there’s a mainstream view in the 1970s that we were on the verge of an ice age, global freezing, and the groupthink of the “experts” does a 180, and makes dire warnings about global warning.
              The point I made earlier, and repeat here, is that the “we’re the scientists, we’ve got it right”, dismissive attitude toward anyone questioning current climate theories reminds many of just how badly scientistscan blow it.
              “NOW we’ve got it right, forget about when we SAID we had it right before” isn’t a convincing ploy, either.
              Do you accept even the possibilty that a generation or two from now, future scientists will this (2017) consensus was scienticically flawed, and science policy of 2017 was flawed as well?

              • False. You misunderstand the history. In any case, it is the current, quite decent, understanding of climate which matters.

                Except to historians of science. So maybe Weart has something about whatever is troubling you.

                • Mr. Benson, I understand what scientists were predicting about global cooling in the 1970s, and I understand that it was presented by those who claimed to have “a current, quite decent understanding of climate”.
                  You can’t brush aside that history, dismiss it as unimportantant.
                  If for no other reason than it should give you some insight as to why people question current theories about glibal warning.
                  Additionally, it’s important for scientists to ask themselves “how did science get it so wrong on back then, and could we be wrong now?”.
                  I think that’s a heathier approach than the hibris displayed in dismissing the position and questions of “climate change deniers”.
                  John Holdren is not just some discredited figure from the 1970s….he was Obama’s chief scientific advisor for most of Obama’s administration.
                  I don’t know how you feel about a guy with a history of promoting bad science policy,but anyone who knows just how spectacularly wrong this guy has been is likely to question if he was the right scientist for that job.

                • This is your problem, David. A person presents a valid concern and your answer is “it is the current, quite decent, understanding of climate which matters.”. Firstly that is not the question being asked. The question is what makes today’s science right when yesterday’s science is suddenly wrong? Had someone asked the scientists from yesterday’s science the same question as they ask you today you would provide the same answer. One can easily see a logical fallacy in such an answer.

                  Secondly, what you are saying is that there is no need for questioning and that one should have complete faith in today’s science. That sounds more like religion than science.

                  Answers to scientific theories require some type of scientific response and not a referral to a library.

        • If that is true, then why do you not entertain questions? Why do you respond with disdain to sincere concerns?

          I’ve got to tell you, in industry, if someone told me that they had lost their original data, figured out that some of their data collecting stations had been moved or shaded or put into the sun during the long term experiment, they only had homogenized data, all of their computer models were wrong, they had refused to cooperate with FOIA, and they had financially benefitted from the results of their study…I would say get a lawyer and prepare for criminal and civil charges.

          Climate scientists need to put on their big boy pants and realize that some of the criticism is entirely self-inflicted. Their theories may still be correct, but they should understand that there have been very serious missteps, both accidental and on purpose. In no way whatsoever, did many scientists follow GDP or GLP.

          The correct response is that you are sorry to have so gravely lost the public trust, not sneer at the intelligence of those with questions.

          Science is built upon questions.

          • Former NOAA scientist Dr John Bates said that Thomas Karl increased the temperature of data collected by buoys, to make them match data collected by ships. But ships are a natural warming source.

            So he massaged the data to give himself the conclusion he wanted, that there was no pause in global warming. That spurious data was published in Science magazine. The computer storing his original data, in a total coincidence, suffered a catastrophic failure and the data was lost. That does seem to be a recurring theme, doesn’t it?

            It’s been one shenanigan after another in climate science.

            I find it funny how climate scientists are frantically making copies of data, afraid that Trump’s Administration will throw them out. Where the heck was their concern 30 years ago? You are just now protective of original data?

            • Once again, your conclusions might be right, or they might be wrong, but your troubles with skeptics are self inflicted.

              Take ownership and regain the public trust, and stop politicizing science. Stop thinking that those who have sincere concerns are stupid, evil, etc.

      • Allan,…
        I don’t think Mr. Benson still considers us to be diversionists.
        He said he was going to “ignore the diversionists”, but then wrote comments to you and me.😄

        • Benson is an emotional fellow and faith-based. That is how he can so easily draw unfounded conclusions on a disputed and complex subject by reading a book meant for the lay public. Pure faith and little science.

          • As I indicated, and you ignored, I’ve studied the Pierrehumbert text. Do the same and then discussion becomes possible. If you just read Weart you might have questions that I could attempt to answer.

                • Mr. Benson,
                  Your answer re Meltwater was to “tead Wikipedia”.
                  And the question posed to you was not “what hapoened at the end of the last Ice Age?”.
                  The question was what you based your forecast on when you predicted a 25 meter rise in sea level…..and over what time frame did you expect that 25 meter rise.
                  “It’s coming, wait for it” isn’t an answer.

                  • To repeat, the current carbon dioxide concentration is the same as in the mid-Pliocene. So expect the same sea level rise at equilibrium. As for the timing, see my previous answer.

                    • So “wait for it”…for centuries, millenia?
                      Or are you predicting that the 25 meter rise in sea levels will closely mirror the timeline of the oceans rise at the end of the end of the Ice Age?

            • David, I have no doubt that you have read some texts or books on Climate. We are dealing with a very specific question where many have differences of opinion yet you seem to hold onto one as if it is totally proven. The relevant question has to do with whether or not man is significantly increasing temperatures on earth and how fast that is occurring. The second question is what to do about it.

              You provided a hysterical bit when you proposed that ocean levels would rise 25 in what seemed to be an attempt to promote the present political philosophy on climate change. I provided my point of view which rejects none of the stated viewpoints, even yours, but does reject the politicization of climate change that has led to unwise politicized actions.

              I think the texts you are recommending deal with a lot more than that subject though I am sure they will discuss the proposed interrelationship between CO2 and climate change along with a host of scientific detail some proven and some not. None of that proves alternate opinions wrong. If climate change is so important then those advocating its importance should welcome ideas from other legitimate scientists instead of saying the facts are in and there is no need for further discussion. Additionally, there shouldn’t be a need for good researchers to lie and distort their data nor prevent other climatologists who disagree with them from having their voices heard as well.

  2. One of my frustrations with Climate Scientists is that they have answers to the wrong question.

    The real, existential question is how to maintain a gaseous profile optimal to mammalian life, and specifically human life?

    Oxygen levels have decreased. Pollution is a global issue, and we are combating it. We have managed to pollute all of the world’s oceans to the point that fish, the most health protein available, is toxic for pregnant women to consume. God help us if we manage to damage phytoplankton, which produce much of the world’s atmosphere.

    I find it utterly incomprehensible that the US cuts down forests to ship to the UK for them to burn wood pellets, considered renewable energy in the accounting sleight of hand tricks to balance carbon. Bullocks. We need to revegetate the Earth, care for existing plant life, incorporate greenscaping into cities and suburbs, and protect rainforest, cradles of biodiversity.

    After the Carboniferous Rainforest Collapse and subsequent high volcanic activity, the oxygen levels at sea level were comparable to what we would find in modern times at 7,000 feet. That led to mass extinctions of the large arthropods that had flourished. I cannot for the life of me remember the name of the period that came afterwards, but oxygen was the great limiter for biomass until plant life stabilized.

    Instead of squabbling about carbon credits, cap and trade, and cow belches or farts, we should be improving our atmosphere, which would have a positive feedback on life today, including asthma rates. Cleaning up our oceans also affects our atmosphere, as it is utter madness to endanger the delicate chain of oxygen factories and abundant food sources therein.

    As I have pointed out in the past, and Allen has as well, people disagree about carbon, but they agree about air pollution. No one wants to live in the miasma the Chinese keep insisting is “fog” to its people. No one wants a river of sludge the Russians euphemistically call “rivers”.

    Clean up your mess. And any alternative energy effort that leads to the chopping down of trees should be adjusted. Case in point – I frequently receive ads for pellet stoves to combat the rising cost of energy.

    We have seen improvements in air quality since the 70s, but we are losing focus and getting divided. Focus on cleaning up the air. Efforts to reduce pollution, the clear and present danger, will also spur innovation in clean energy production. Encourage, do not discourage. Mark successes and the general trend of improvements.

    Mark my words: if you raise the cost of energy for any reason, people will burn trees.

    Intention doesn’t matter.

    • https://energy.gov/energysaver/home-heating-systems/wood-and-pellet-heating

      “Today you can choose from a new generation of wood- and pellet-burning appliances that are cleaner burning, more efficient, and powerful enough to heat many average-sized, modern homes. Pellet fuel appliances burn small pellets that measure 3/8 to 1 inch in length.”

      “Wood-burning appliances and fireplaces may emit large quantities of air pollutants. Wood smoke contains hundreds of chemical compounds including nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, organic gases, and particulate matter, many of which have adverse health effects. In many urban and rural areas, smoke from wood burning is a major contributor to air pollution.”

      http://www.americanenergysystems.com/heat-with-wood-natural-gas.cfm

      “Natural gas may come with a low price tag, but there are other costs associated with its use. It’s not a renewable energy source and must be mined – and in some cases gas companies may be using the environmentally questionable process of hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” to extract it from the earth. Responsibly forested wood, on the other hand, is a renewable heat source you can feel proud to use.”

      Insanity. There are indeed pellets made from waste products. Forests should not be chopped down to heat homes. The only viable pellet stove alternative is to burn waste products, and that would have to be clean burning. As stated previously, clean burning has been a goal of fossil fuels, as well, and can be a possible goal for thermal home systems.

      Anyone who does not believe that wood burning is on the rise in the US, or that it is being marketed as a renewable alternative energy source, has not researched the matter.

    • https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/jul/13/liberal-mp-says-people-will-die-of-cold-because-renewable-energy-drives-up-fuel-prices

      “Renewable energy will kill people this winter, Craig Kelly, the chair of the Coalition’s backbench environment and energy committee has claimed.

      Kelly, a Liberal backbencher, said the deaths would be caused by people not being able to afford to heat their homes in winter. He blamed rising fuel costs on the government’s renewable energy target.

      “People will die,” he told ABC radio on Thursday.

      States may go it alone on clean energy target, says Victoria’s energy minister
      Read more
      Kelly, MP for Hughes in New South Wales, cited recent reports that one-in-four Australian households this winter will be frightened to turn on the heater due to high power prices. He also said the World Health Organisation has made it clear that winter mortality rates increase if people can’t afford to heat their homes.”

      I do not believe that it has come up in this thread, but it is a common complaint that alternative energy is not cost effective yet. It is expensive. Adding it to utility portfolios increases end user costs. I know my own utility company has notified me in writing before that their costs have gone up because it is increasing alternative energy.

      When heating your home becomes expensive, you can perish from exposure, or if there are trees nearby, you chop them down and burn them. When I have brought this up on other threads, the responses is typically ad hominen, I don’t care about the environment, or I must be a Koch Brothers spy, etc, etc.

      I do care about the environment. I care about people heaving heated and air conditioned homes. Heat, air conditioning, and access to food basically lifts us out of third world privation and extends longevity. I am passionate about greening the planet. That is one aspect that mankind has most definitely impacted our planet. We grade land to increase runoff, which removes the cycle that created aquifers. We hardscape. We create storm drains to flush water to the sea, along with pollutants, instead of planting into the ground. We remove adapted native plants and replace it with hardscape and European landscaping, or introduce alien grasses that burn like tinder. We create one manmade fire after another, that races across land that would not have otherwise burned, because we caused non native grass tinder to build up. That further revegetates the area. Removal of vegetation dries the atmosphere. Plants respire oxygen and water vapor. So the less green, the more dry.

    • http://www.greenbeltmovement.org/who-we-are

      “The Green Belt Movement (GBM) was founded by Professor Wangari Maathai in 1977 under the auspices of the National Council of Women of Kenya (NCWK) to respond to the needs of rural Kenyan women who reported that their streams were drying up, their food supply was less secure, and they had to walk further and further to get firewood for fuel and fencing. GBM encouraged the women to work together to grow seedlings and plant trees to bind the soil, store rainwater, provide food and firewood, and receive a small monetary token for their work.

      Shortly after beginning this work, Professor Maathai saw that behind the everyday hardships of the poor—environmental degradation, deforestation, and food insecurity—were deeper issues of disempowerment, disenfranchisement, and a loss of the traditional values that had previously enabled communities to protect their environment, work together for mutual benefit, and to do both selflessly and honestly. The Green Belt Movement instituted seminars in civic and environmental education, now called Community Empowerment and Education seminars (CEE), to encourage individuals to examine why they lacked agency to change their political, economic, and environmental circumstances. Participants began to understand that for years they had been placing their trust in leaders who had betrayed them and that they were sabotaging their lives by not working for the common good and failing to use their natural resources wisely.”

      A pioneer in reclaiming arid drylands, Zephaniah Phiri. He was fired and blacklisted for being an activist against Apartheid. He sat on his land, wondering what in the world he was going to do. The only thing of value he owned was some hardscrabble worthless arid land. He decided that God had already provided everything he would need, and determined to create his own Garden of Eden. The Corps of Engineers had graded the land so that there was maximum runoff, and therefore maximum drought. So he changed the topography by hand and created a series of catchments. Within a comparatively short period of time, he had a stocked pond, orchard, abundant garden, and had learned how to “plant” water deep for the roots of his trees. He became so successful that he helped nearby schools grow lunch gardens to help feed the students.

      Green the planet, catch and plant water, and improve the air. Better for today and tomorrow. Plus, frankly, a greener, more natural environment improves quality of life than barren hardscape.

  3. A few points:

    1) I think while there is no agreement on climate change there is great agreement on pollution. One should try and work from a point of agreement.

    2) We have to recognize that words count and certain groups to force their ideas onto others use words in a way that inhibits discussion and complicates the issue. The group started with global cooling in the 1970’s and then changed to global warming in more recent years. That changed to climate change which is what has been happening for eons of time and happened long before man appeared on the planet.

    3)The question is not climate change rather is man substantially altering the temperature of the earth? Considering episodes on the sun and volcano’s etc. that have demonstrated significant changes in temperature on the earth over very short periods of time we have to question what effect we are actually having.

    4)If man is causing such harm to the planet as to make life unsustainable then a solution would be called for. Puting man back into the stone age or eradicating man to prevent his negative effects on the planet would be crazy so one has to ask himself one question. Is man’s influence so great that it will destroy man in a relatively short time period as some suggest (Al Gore) or will this happen over a longer period of time giving man time to adapt along with finding new technologies?

    If it is the former, a short time span, then nothing we are doing today will save mankind. It might even speed up the process. If it is a long time span then we should worry more about pollution since resolving the problems of pollution go a long way to resolving the problems of what is called man-made global warming.

    5) Many blame the US, but I think the US has done more to prevent pollution and “global warming” than any other nation and we have to remember that when we cause closure of an industry in this nation that is needed it only opens in China and pollution and “global warming” markedly increases.

    6)There are many ideas as to how to cool the planet. If disaster were to occur due to “global warming” it wouldn’t be the Al Gores of the world pushing carbon credits that solve the problem. The world would be saved by those men and woman whose ideas become a reality. We are putting our dollars in the wrong place.

    • Very well said, Allan.

      I would like to add that it is irresponsible of climate scientists to say that climate change is irreversible, and that the Earth will be uninhabitable shortly. I have heard estimates as early as 40 years. This is now a common meme both in the media and science.

      If we are doomed no matter what we do, then why bother with environmentalism or conserving resources? If they actually do convince people of their theory, then everyone will party like Nero and pollute like China.

      Poor foresight and self defeating tactic…

  4. There are many websites devoted to energy sources. I follow Euan Mearns’
    Energy Matters
    blog. You may care to do the same.

    • Thank you for the reference. I love to follow energy developments.

      This innovation blows my hair back:

      My problem with wind farms is that they can be devastating to bird and bat populations. In addition, I’ve ridden by individual wind turbines in residences, and have visited wind farms. They are so incredibly loud. There is this incessant chopping of the air. It’s hard to describe, but it’s oppressive. Constant. You can feel it in your ears. I believe that this can impact wildlife in ecosystems with wind farms, and it annoys neighbors. My horse didn’t like it at all.

      This oscillating pillar might be the solution. Or it might lead to further out of the box thinking that will provide the solution.

      I am concerned about carpeting the landscape with wind farms that have not solved these problems, and would therefore need to be replaced at great expense. I consider this Beta phase wide scale rollout, when they should have presented a more viable product.

  5. Those interested in actual information about the climate are encouraged to read “Earth’s Climate: Past and Future” by W.F. Ruddiman. The first edition is perfectly adequate and used copies are inexpensively obtainable online.

    Alternatively, David Archer also has a beginning climatology text. Neither book has more than one equation.

    I liked the organization of the Ruddiman text, but then, that is the book I started learning climatology from.

    I also encourage reading the summary of “Six Degrees” by Mark Lynas which is available online. There has been discussion recently about holding warming to 2 °C. This book will hint at how bad that will be if such a limiting actually occurs. But likely it won’t so read the rest to discover just how unbearable major portions of the globe might well become.

  6. To be clear, it is only the burning of fossil fuels which is ruining the climate. There is nothing wrong with petrochemical derivatives except for the lack of proper waste disposal in some places. One proposed solution is to use bioplastics which will naturally rot away. But the plastics disposal issue is independent of the requirement of ending the burning of oil, coal and methane, the main constituent of natural gas.

  7. Haven’t seen much of Linda on this topic so let me paraphrase what she would’ve said in between bong hits:

    Russian oligarchs control the sun and the orbit of the Earth with Donald Trump working the controls from a secret catacomb way down near the center of the Earth. There is a tunnel that connects the catacomb between the White House and Kremlin. Boom! Collusion between oligarchs. The Koch’s paid to dig the tunnels.

  8. If the sea levels truly are rising as the climatists claim…how come the California, Connecticut, and Massachusetts coasts are littered – and I do mean littered – with the sprawling mansions occupied by the very same people that preach climate change down to the rest of us?

    • AndrewWS,..
      Sea levels have been rising at a rate of 1/8″ per year for the past generation.
      At this rate, the 25 meter increase in sea level will happen in about 7800 years, if my math is right.
      Wait for it.

        • David,…
          That Wikipedia page reviews what happened c.13,000-15,000 years ago, at the end of the last ice age.
          It does not make any forecasts about the future rate of rise in sea levels.
          I could “predict” the weather for the past year in Pullman, Washington, but that isn’t a forecast.
          The 2007 IPCC report did give forecasts by those referred to as the “the world’s top climatologists”.
          That report, and others, demonstrate just how far off the mark these models can be in their forecasts.

          • Tom Nash, the point is how fast ice sheets can collapse, thus raising the sea level. Meltwater Pulse 1A is only indicative, not predictive. Glaciologists don’t know how fast the West Antarctic Ice Sheet will collapse, just that it has in the remote past and will again if carbon dioxide levels remain at about or above current concentrations.

            • David,…
              – In the 1970s, the groupthink theme leaned toward global cooling, not global warming.
              And the possibilty that we were heading into a new ICE AGE.
              I don’t know if you are familiar with John Holdren, who warned of the coming catrastophes global cooling would bring.
              Holdren was President Obama’s chief scientific advisor.
              In that role, and currently, he’s range the alarm bells about global warming.
              Bogus predictions in his past didn’t seem to harm his status going forward.
              Wildly inaccurate predications do, however, account for widespread doubt among the public about whether those forecasting disasterous climate change consequences know what they’re talking about.

              • This is entirely false. It is also irrelevant. The physics is clear. It is rather that you haven’t studied it. Above I offer the suggestions of some texts to study. The resulting knowledge will help keep you from flailing.

                • David,
                  I’m wondering what texts you would have, or did, refer people to in the 1970s to warn them of the riskbof global coolong.

                  • When a climatologist, of a panel of climate seers,have a track of blowing it, they should take the time and the trouble to wipe the eggs frombtheir faces before going on to a new set of predictions.
                    You may be convinced that whatever the consensus theory of a group of scientists happens to be at a particular point in tims, it has to be the correct and only theory.

                    That belief is not univetsal, which is why I mentioned public skepticism.
                    I also mentioned the certainty of the 1970s global cooling forecasts……I noticed that you didn’t comment on that.

      • How many years is a generation. Following one supreme court justice Bader Gizzardburger about 12 years . and don;t forget to add 300 years for the current mini ice age.

        • My but you are out of date. The so-called Little Ice Age ended in 1870.

          And noticed the string of warmest years recently?

          • The Maunder Minimum. And all signs indicate we are entering another one.

            *And, the Maunder Minimum affected the trees from which the wood to make the Stradivarius violins was taken. Produced a very unique sound, and nothing like it has been made since.

                • A good blinded study requires that everything in the study is treated equally. Since you adhere to a specific study’s findings can you answer the following question?

                  Were all violins optimized equally prior to the study?

                  The answer is no.

                  Another question you have to ask yourself is exactly what was being asked. What was being asked is not what your posting suggests because what was asked was which violin the violinist preferred not whether they could tell the difference between the old and the modern violin.

                  Like climate change, David, you have a tendency to overstate your conclusions.

                  I am not commenting on violins for I can’t tell one from another. I am merely commenting on your poor performance in restating something you have read. You draw unfounded conclusions based at least on confirmation bias. As I have stated before, a little knowledge can be dangerous.

  9. Years back Al Gore was preaching about the sea levels rising. At about the same time he dropped over 9 million dollars into ocean front property in California. Do as I say and not as I do. Or is it the other way around?

      • Yes, yes he is:

        http://articles.latimes.com/2010/may/08/home/la-hm-hotprop-20100508

        In a move that critics may cite as his own inconvenient truth, former Vice President Al Gore and his wife, Tipper, have added a house in secluded Montecito to their real estate holdings.

        The couple spent $8,875,000 on a gated ocean-view villa on 1 1/2 acres with a swimming pool, spa and fountains, according to real estate sources familiar with the deal. The Italian-style house has high ceilings with beams in the public rooms, a family room, a wine cellar, terraces, six fireplaces, five bedrooms and nine bathrooms in more than 6,500 square feet of living space.

        Montecito has long been a haven for Southern California’s rich and famous, a spot where celebrity faces can blend into the crowd. Among the community’s notable residents have been talk show giant Oprah Winfrey, actors Michael Douglas and Christopher Lloyd, and golfer Fred Couples. The 93108 ZIP Code, which includes the coastal hamlet, was ranked as America’s seventh most expensive area last year by Forbes.

        Word of the purchase was reported in late April in the Montecito Journal. Gore, 62, did not respond to The Times’ requests for comment.

        Al Gore is an albatross to climate scientists. This is not the first time he’s run afoul of his own preaching. He has repeatedly been criticized for his mammoth electricity usage, again a scandal because he makes a fortune off of environmentalism. https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/al-gores-electric-bills-get-criticism-an-inconvenient-sequel-1026228

        • Gore is an albatross to climate scientists and also an albatross to:

          California’s water management [swimming pool, spa and fountains]
          Those that are against building The Wall [ gated ocean-view villa ]

          • As Allan said, it is ocean front property, at 180 feet elevation, in Santa Barbara county. Al Gore has repeatedly stated that the coasts are doomed due to Global Warming, yet his actions speak quite differently.

            He has also preached energy savings and alternative energy, but, again, his actions speak quite differently, as he uses quite a bit of on-grid energy for his mansion.

            • Moreover, if the seas are truly rising when do the Hollywood elites plan to abandon their coastal sprawl in Malibu?

  10. All of you, even the semi-incompetent blithering idiots spouting this inane prattle, are allowed your own opinion. However, you are not allowed your own facts. Merely compare the photographs of the receding glaciers and shrinking polar caps. These objective and observable facts are cause by the ice melting. Are you going to believe your lying eyes, or continue to spout the false narrative of Pravda Faux News and know-nothing evidence-haters in the current manifestation of the Republican Party?

    this is to the “i didn’t even know that NOAA was taking the temperature” dupes
    http://www.noaa.gov/news/noaa-2017-was-3rd-warmest-year-on-record-for-globe

    • Marky Mark Mark – you are aware the great Ice Cap melted enough to allow people from Asia into the Americas long before the use of fossil fuels.

      • The evidence suggests that people arrived south of the glaciers before much melting took place.

        Be that as it may be, the world is on its way to another 25 meters of sea level rise. Due to burning fossil fuels.

        Hope you have your waders.

        • “on its way to another 25 meters of sea level rise. Due to burning fossil fuels.”

          David, what is your direct evidence that we will have a 25-meter rise in sea level due to burning fossil fuel?

          I hear claims on both sides, but yours is so specific and eliminates solar and other causes.

          • David, don’t you think that you should have said due to burning fossil fuels and cows farting? Wouldn’t you have to add a couple of feet because of farts?

          • Same carbon dioxide concentration as that which prevailed during the mid-Pliocene when the sea stand was about 25 meters higher than now. So just be patient; its coming.

              • AndrewWS,.

                Maybe you can find a Dr. Paul Ehrlich-typewho’ll give you a more specific timeline beyond “be patient, it’s coming”.

            • You have made a leap of faith in the use of what seems to be your sole metric when there are a multiplicity things that can cause sea level to rise or fall. If you were giving me this answer as a student in your university I would give you an F.

              • No, because I can give a fully reasoned account, just not in this narrow gutter format.

                But be assured that all other matters are essentially equal so carbon dioxide concentration is the explanatory variable. See any climatology text and for details about heat trapping gases any text on atmospheric radiative physics.

                • Carbon dioxide concentration is one of the variables under consideration and it isn’t even clear the totality of effects carbon dioxide has and had. The correlations that you prefer are not causational and controversial even among those that join the very generalized statements on climate change. You were a professor, correct? If so you should be a bit more circumspect about your reputation.

                  • You are just demonstrating your obstinate ignorance. Try Ray Pierrehumbert’s “Principles of Planetary Climate”
                    but also the Wikipedia page on the Pliocene climate.

                    • Is Wikipedia your source? No need for universities if that is the basis of a university’s knowledge. As far as Ray P goes, are you throwing out big names trying to impress us or are you going to show us where he says “on its way to another 25 meters of sea level rise. Due to burning fossil fuels.”

                      Maybe it is not my obstinate ignorance, but your irrational attachment to a political theme that has been overblown so that you think there is an agreement among all the scientific parties where there isn’t.

                    • Allan, I am confident that Pierrehumbert’s book is beyond you; I studied it. Read the Wikipedia page before you comment. As it is your ignorance is showing.

                    • David, you can make whatever claim you want, but I don’t overstate an opinion like you do and you seem totally unaware of differences in opinion. Thus you study one side of the coin (idea) and draw conclusions that are only half right and when you are half right you are wrong.

                      You just posted something on violins and comparisons between the old and new. You read about that as well, but you were wrong there as well for you went far beyond your knowledge. Go read that posting.

                      You have to high an opinion of yourself.

            • If humanity places its entire hope of survival on the Earth freezing, pardon the pun, at its current climate and sea level, then we are doomed.

              When any species cannot adapt to a changing environment, it goes extinct.

              Global warming has been prophesied as the doom of our species and most life on Earth. However, our emissions have not been steady. Rather, every generation sees an improvement in technology. We have gotten cleaner and cleaner over the years. If that’s not good enough, then, again, we are doomed.

              We cannot, as a species, suddenly abandon technology and go back to a hunter and gatherer, nomadic, or agricultural lifestyle. For one, that would entail deforestation for fuel, and after the forests are gone, we would be reduced to burning dung. After all, since plastics are made from fossil fuels, and stainless steel is made from fossil fuels, that throws the alternative energy we have out, too. Because it cannot exist, right now, without products made from fossil fuels.

              Our population became more dense because fossil fuels allowed more of us to survive, and less of us to freeze or starve to death. We are too many to go back to the ancient ways of all of us living off the land. The collapse of fossil fuels would pit a great many people against each other for dwindling resources.

              • And why is our time and our climate ideal? Why is our climate better than any other climate the Earth has ever experienced? How is one species to force an entire planet to remain in its current climate, and never change again?

                    • In a warmer climate it will be wetter where it is wet and dryer where it is dry.
                      Agriculture becomes difficult.

                      A few of us are adaptable. 7 going on 9 billion of us not so much.

                    • David, you are totally wrong. A slight increase in temperature to the earth would save more lives than it would kill. You are talking like an ignorant kid who knows it all and is certain of his opinions despite a lack of knowledge demonstrated by the need of conformity when discussing this complex problem.

                    • David, there you go again this time calling me an ignorant fool. The problem is that I read both sides of the coin while you read only one of its sides. Moreover, I don’t draw such firm conclusions when I don’t have the expertise. I guess it is a matter of training. You can be wrong when you have tenure in academia, but there is no such tenure in the real world.

                      When you look at this comment of yours and look at my response to your posting on violins you (may or may not) and others will see that you are a bigger fool than you appeared before.

                      Start learning how to interpret a scientific study. You are sorely lacking knowledge in that type of endeavor

              • I’ve read a lot of silly nonsense here, but this missive is by far the most ridiculous, meandering, unfocused, off-topic and shallow straw-man attempt that’s ever been posted. Congratulations, or some such.

                This is to “I just felt like discussing cave man days, I guess” karen

                • Mark,

                  Although the ad hominem is amusing, please outline exactly what you want.

                  We have already discussed that we are currently working on new energy technology, as well as working out the problems in Beta phases, such as keeping wind turbines from chopping up birds. We also know about pollution, and how we have developed ways to be cleaner, and will continue to do so. We have also talked about how fossil fuels are finite, and one day will be replaced with this new energy that we will develop and perfect. I have listed all of the products integral to modern life and longevity, ranging from syringes, to blood transfusion bags, to computers, to toilet seats, all made from petrochemicals. All of that would need replacements from other sources.

                  That does not satisfy. You are angry. OK. What else would you have us do? Are you furious that we have not replaced all of these petrochemical products yet, and your very own computer is a product of fossil fuels? Are you upset that even stainless steel is made from fossil fuels?

                  Yes, we get it. You are concerned about the climate and pollution. We are already working on solutions, and without fossil fuels today, there would be no more computers or roads. What exactly would you have us do that would calm you or convince you that we, too, care about the environment?. We just obviously are working on a viable replacement and see no point in discontinuing fossil fuels immediately since it is ubiquitous in our life. One day it will be replaced.

                  What’s the problem? Not happening fast enough? Does your anger make it faster? Does typing disdainfully on a fossil fuel computer make you somehow morally superior to me?

            • The Pliocene – as in when the Earth became cooler and drier and savannas proliferated? That’s when the carbon dioxide was at current levels?

              And cows absolutely do fart. Rather frequently. They also release methane as they belch chewing their cud, because it is released from the bacterial fermentation in their rumen. If you ever visit cows, you will be under no doubt that they fart. Also, when they release a rather watery patty, you can also smell methane. There are even efforts to harvest methane from cow manure. Scientists have discussed controlling methane through feed, but that would be detrimental to the animal, as methane is naturally produced through their digestion. A natural process.

              Megafauna existed for much of Earth’s history of biodiversity. Controlling the amount of methane a living, breathing creature emits is absurd. Life is the very reason why Earth is special. Will this be the next fad? Decrease populations of large creatures like elephants, rhinos, giraffes, buffalo, water buffalo, hippos, and cattle to save the planet?

        • Well I’ll let you green phonies who are letting california destroy the ecology of SF Bay and San PAblo bay without a whimper just sort of bark at the moon.

    • Mark:

      Do you enjoy modern technology like computers, cell phones, airplane travel, and plastics such as that used in syringes, medical tubing? And do you like driving on paved roads rather than cobblestones? Stainless steel is made using fossil fuels.

      Because all of that is produced by fossil fuels.

      If we cannot make it through the day without somehow, someway using the products of fossil fuels in our life, how are we to suddenly discard it?

      Sure, we could feel morally superior as we chopped down trees to heat our homes, because solar power doesn’t work in winter, and wind power only works when the wind blows, and heaters are usually gas powered. Sure, the electricity grid already shuts down in blackouts in CA because demand outstrips supply, and that is with most cars funning on fossil fuels.

      We do not have the infrastructure to completely replace fossil fuels yet. We will one day. Before that, we not only have to find a way to power the world to maintain first world standards and longevity, but we also have to find comparable alternatives in products ranging from cortisone, to blood transfusion bags, to computers.

      The only way that anyone in the modern world could completely avoid using fossil fuels would be to hike out into the bush, build a cabin using nearby trees, grow and hunt all of your own food, never use plastic or stainless steel in any way, and hike out on foot or a dog sled used in the traditional Inuit way. You couldn’t even hunt with a firearm, because obviously steel would be involved, and the gun would be shipped from the manufacturer to the retailer to you, and the same for the bullets. So you would have to use arrows and snares, but you would have to fashion your own arrowheads out of obsidian because, again, no stainless steel.

      You type this on a product made with fossil fuels. If you eat, you consume products made with fossil fuels. That includes if you grow your own food, because at some point, the seeds were shipped to you with fossil fuels.

      This anger against fossil fuels is strange. Yes, we know that energy production pollutes. We have made great strides since the 1970s to clean up our act, and will continue to improve energy production pollution throughout our energy portfolio.

      I understand the impetus behind improving our pollution, and finding a replacement for a finite resource that runs the world, our communications, and our health.

      But I do not understand the hatred for this industry. We would not have computers without it. Literally. Nor any paved roads. It goes beyond simply striving for technological advances into the territory of hating what is not yet ready to change. One day, maybe energy will be free and pollution free. That would be wonderful. We are not there yet.

      If we were to stop all fossil fuel production today, the alternative energy portfolio cannot carry the burden. So we would chop down trees, polluting the atmosphere more. Isn’t the goal of replacing fossil fuels to improve the atmosphere? So wouldn’t it be stupid to ban fossil fuels and end up worsening the atmosphere? No one is going to genteely freeze to death in their homes because fossil fuels went away and the energy grid just cannot heat everyone’s home in winter with wind turbines. No, they are going to denude forests, just like they did in the age before fossil fuels. That will remove the oxygen factories and air scrubbers, so in addition to adding smoke pollution, we would be lessening our air production and quality. Fossil fuels stopped whaling. Before fossil fuels, people lighted their homes with whale oil lamps. How sad if fossil fuels were stopped, and whaling ramped up.

      Foresight. You can dislike fossil fuels and plan for their replacement. But don’t plunge the world into the Third World because you jump the gun.

      • See my statement above. Only you seem to think we would need to return to Little House on the Prairie. I am completely and utterly mystified as to where you came up with that scenario. Is this some trope that the Pravda Faux News propagandists are shilling today? I suggest changing the channel, or maybe read to inform yourself.

        this is to “I don’t even know how to churn butter” karen

        • Mark – I’m sorry, but I don’t see a comment where you expressed what you wanted. I saw the one about the glaciers, and cave man, etc. If you wrote about what you wanted, then I’ve missed it. Please repost.

          Also, theoretically, I do know how to churn butter. Come to think of it, I’m good friends with an organic dairy farmer, and could probably give it a try. How interesting.

        • I’ve shied away from nuclear power plants in the past, due to the longevity of the waste and possibility of meltdowns. However, I’m very interested about the advancements where nuclear reactors essentially consume their own waste.

          I wish I could get a glimpse of what our energy will be like in 500 years. The Renaissance was 500 years ago. Will 500 years from now be so different?

            • I would expect so. Seal level fluctuates in geologic time.

              https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/mar/28/al-gores-seawater-swindle/

              A former research director with the Army Corps of Engineers and a former civil-engineering professor at the University of Florida decided to put the sea-rise claims to the test. They gathered U.S. tide-gauge readings from 57 stations where water levels had been continuously recorded for as long as 156 years. The result did suggest the sea level was increasing in the western Pacific, but this was offset by a drop in the level near the Alaskan coast. “Our analyses do not indicate acceleration in sea level in U.S. tide gauge records during the 20th century,” the study’s authors concluded. “Instead, for each time period we consider, the records show small decelerations that are consistent with a number of earlier studies of worldwide-gauge records.”
              Perhaps Mr. Gore knows this. Last year, he reportedly dropped $8.9 million on a new mansion in an exclusive California neighborhood perilously close to the Pacific. With six bedrooms, six fireplaces and nine baths, Mr. Gore’s palatial ocean-view estate hardly reflects the carbon austerity he expects from everyone else. He was even caught a few years ago by the Tennessee Center for Policy Research failing to extinguish all of the lights in his larger home during “Earth Hour” in the Volunteer State.

    • Marky Mark Mark, studies have repeatedly shown that most of the methane gasses that could potentially contribute to a purported greenhouse effect emanate from deep within the bowels of the beltway in Washington, DC, and primarily from those of Left, as they spend far more time spreading noxious gasses than virtually anyone on the planet. Scientists have estimated that if this methane gas could somehow be collected, stored, and harnessed, it would produce enough natural gas to power all Earthly needs for the next 10,000 years.

    • Mark M:

      “All of you, even the semi-incompetent blithering idiots spouting this inane prattle, are allowed your own opinion. However, you are not allowed your own facts. ”

      *********************************************

      I totally agree that you don’t get your own facts, so here’s a doozy for you:

      https://www.nasa.gov/content/goddard/antarctic-sea-ice-reaches-new-record-maximum

      Maybe there’s only global warming at the North Pole. LOL

      What was that about “inane prattle” again?

    • Is that communist rag still in business?
      _____

      Merriam Webster

      – poor

      definition: 1(a) lazy 1(b) bereft of ambition
      _____

      Every American is free to engage in his biblical duty as free enterprise in the private charity industry.

      Under the Constitution, Congress is limited in its power to tax solely for “general Welfare” and shall not, by way of deliberate omission and, thereby, exclusion and preclusion, impose taxation for individual welfare in any form.

      Next question.

                • David, you are in the process of telling others what to do. You tell us “I vote” and that seems to be what you believe is a great feat, one that will help the poor become rich. I don’t buy that. It is not due to my perception. It is more likely due to your belief that your existence is important when it isn’t. Your mindset seems to utilize resources in the present for personal needs but contains nothing of their production in the future.

            • Voting to have the government spend taxpayer money on the poor is different than giving up your own money to help the poor.

              I assume you do both.

              There is a valid argument that one avenue of thought is that people think they have done for the poor when they vote for higher benefits, but give nothing of themselves personally. That vote means that other people bear the burden, but it does not affect a voter himself, especially if the benefits mainly come from charging higher and higher and higher rates to those who make more money than he. In other words, I did my bit because I voted for the rich to pay for the poor. You do your bit when you donate your own money. Voting for others to chip in is a separate issue and does not absolve any individual of their own responsibility.

  11. The “global warming” scamsters have lost all credibility except among only the most die-hard leftist dupes and dopes and the scamsters themselves–ever since they were forced into revising their bogus terminology to the fraudulent name “climate change.” Next, they’ll be using the duplicitous phrase “climate fluctuation” in a desperate attempt to keep the con game going even as the die-hard leftist dupes and dopes get a scintilla of wisdom after being wrong year-after-year-after-year. (Okay, I’m giving the die-hard leftist dupes and dopes the benefit of the doubt even though not deserved. But I’m just that kind of guy.)

    Here’s some wit and wisdom from the late, great comic George Carlin who had the amazing ability to make us laugh at the truth for decades during his career.

  12. Perry’s comments illustrate how out of step this administration is with the rest of the world. It is essentially a flat-earth type of mentality. And one should note that Perry’s native Texas has embraced wind power to a large extent. So even Texans don’t even believe that fossil fuels are the future.

    • Olly posted this above, but you may not have seen it.

      The complete quote that Professor Turley referred to is:

      “Perry, meanwhile, boasted that the U.S. is pursuing reductions in emissions of carbon dioxide, despite intending to leave the Paris climate change agreement that all other nations are a part of.

      “The United States is leading the world in reduction of emissions,” Perry said. “You can have economic growth, improved quality of life, and at the same time drive down emissions. The driving force is the transition from old, inefficient power plants to cleaner burning natural gas. That is what we want to be a part of, and what the fossil fuel industry wants to be a part of.”

      But Perry also expressed support for technologies that could displace fossil fuels, such as electric vehicles and battery storage, which can hold excess renewable energy when the sun isn’t shining, and wind is not blowing.

      “Are electric cars a good thing, and will you see lot of focus on the development of them?” Perry said. “Absolutely. Certainly, the U.S. will be deeply involved in the development of electric.”

      “Battery storage to me is the most intriguing [innovation] to me,” Perry added. “It is truly the holy grail here.””

      Please explain why this is a flat Earth mentality.

  13. The climate sure does change. A few billion years ago, the “climate” didn’t even exist because the earth didn’t exist.

    The biggest polluters are people. Can you say China, India, Southeast Asia, etc.?

    Be sure to put a lid on those volcanoes, above and below the surface of the oceans, because they definitely put out more pollutants than an SUV.

    Oil is renewable energy. Oil is abiotic.

    The planet spontaneously generates oil “Eight Miles Low”.

  14. It is a question of use what you have now for immediate practical reason of prosperity OR
    sacrifice what you have now for a prospective ideological gain — suffer for now to theoretically make for a better existence in the unknown future.

    Of course, that ignores that this does not have to be a zero-sum decision.
    Using what we’ve got now, although not instantly ideologically pure, can and will enable us to get the ideologically preferred method faster.

    With enough riches now, we will develop nuclear energy technologies much faster, and that will be the energy crisis solution, and environmental carbon fears hysteria nonsense to boot.

  15. Absolutely. Our lives as a species are much better today thanks to fossil fuels. Don’t get me wrong. I’d love to see more fuel alternatives. For right now though we’ve got oil. We’re better off as a global community when that oil is mined via US oil wells rather than the uninspected, unchecked, inferior wells operated by ****hole nations.

    • Andrew, you’re 20 years in the past. We have plenty of alternatives. Solar is totally practical now. The only thing holding us back is the Koch Brothers and Republican party.

      • Except you are wrong. I remember once upon a time we had a President that said Green Collar jobs were going to usher in a new era of prosperity. There would be jobs for all caulking windows – yes, vast legions of window caulkers would descend upon every village and town and through caulking the windows why, we’d all be living like Thurston Howell III pre-SS Minnow accident. That President even named a violent anarchist who wrote a book about the so-called Green Collar economy (it was called Greening the Ghetto) as “czar” over the whole thing. They poured trillions of tax dollars into the whole sham – far more than the brothers Koch ever could – and the result was a wasteland of Solyndras.

        If electrical cars for example were viable – and they aren’t really electric to begin with – then we’d have more of them by now. The first electric car came about more than 100 years ago. That has little to do with political parties. It has everything to do with people like me and you. After all, what energy sources are you using right now? And, if we come off oil how will you type your response back to me if we can’t make plastic anymore?

        • Andrew, these quick answers we get only demonstrate a lack of information.

          I think solar is great. All forms of energy are great when used appropriately, but some equate solar panels as all good. They have never bothered to look at the reverse side along with the problems that would temper their responses.

          I’ll bet Peter Hill doesn’t recognize the relationship of solar panels to:

          Disease such as silicosis.
          Toxicity, silicon tetrachloride that can be dumped in the water supply, other dangerous elements
          carcinogenic components
          Tremendous energy use of petroleum products that increase the carbon footprint.

          There are loads more problems with solar cells including where and how they can be used along with the cost. Solar cells are good and should be encouraged, but the use of petroleum products and clean coal is also good. One has to look at both of the equation something I don’t think Peter Hill has done.

          • No, I just didn’t feel like going into a length and useless argument with the lad. I agree, any and all energy sources should be on the table. In places like southern California and Denver where sunshine is abundant let solar take off if the market supports it. In places like Binghamton where there are far fewer sunny days then use something else. In any case, let’s not demonize one type of energy just because it’s hip to do so these days.

            And fact is, oil doesn’t just provide us with fuel and energy. Without oil there are no plastics and certain synthetic fabrics.

      • “Solar is totally practical now.”

        I live in the sunny state of CA, perfect for solar. I dream of going solar one day. However, solar does not work in weak light or bad weather. Hence, solar is not suited for many states.

        In addition, utility companies fight net metering, where they pay for the excess energy you produce to the grid. They argue that they have to maintain the grid, but customers drop off during the summer months, only coming back on in winter. They either don’t want net metering, or they want to charge customers a fee for grid upkeep.

        Personally, I disagree that all homes must be connected to the grid to be permitted. Alaska gets along without homes connected to electricity. I don’t see why you couldn’t build a house off grid.

        However, for that to happen, they have to improve battery to store excess solar energy, so you can use it in low light. Right now, they have solar battery banks, but they are massive and costly for anything other than overnight. They have not solved the longer term storage problem for residences yet. I think they will, soon.

        “The only thing holding us back is the Koch Brothers and Republican party.” Well, no. What’s holding us back is that the infrastructure can’t handle all alternative energy now. We rely on other sources because wind turbines only work when there is wind. Solar only works when there is sun. People tend to not want their community carpeted in wind farms, or solar panel farms, but solar panel roofs are appropriate.

        Right now, alternative energy in the grid costs more. That is why when the electric company has to incorporate more alternative energy, your rates go up, along with a letter explaining why.

        The absolutely most rosy estimate is that renewable energy will be able to handle 80% of our energy needs by 2050. It’s 2018. So, not even the Renewable Energy Department thinks that “solar is totally practical now.”

        It’s practical for some end users, but not the entire grid. Not yet.

        https://www.pri.org/stories/2017-07-20/california-s-electrical-grid-can-t-handle-all-solar-energy-state-producing

        But the problem, he says, is that California doesn’t have a clear policy to manage all the renewables being added to the grid. “The state is working on it,” he says. “But what that has done has led to us paying other states to take our excess solar power.”

        “If they don’t need it but we need to get rid of it, then we might have to actually pay them to take it.”

        In his article, Penn explains that because the solar energy supply fluctuates — as does the state’s demand for electricity — fossil fuel electricity is still needed to bridge the gaps. “A key question in the debate is when California will be able to rely on renewable power for most or all of its needs and safely phase out fossil fuel plants, which regulators are studying,” he writes.

        The holy grail, he says, is being able to store solar energy for use when the sun isn’t out. “Batteries, of course, is what we’re looking at,” he says. “And getting that where it needs to be, both residentially and utility-scale — that has been a focal point.”

        Exciting developments for solar batteries on the horizon…

        • A systemically endemic problem facing American, at least, culture is the notion that a solution is singular in scope and the debate revolves around different groups insisting that their singular solution is best. The practice limits further discussion on broadening the scope of the debate as doing so ends when one group believes it has discredited the opposition’s single point.

          For the renewable energy debate, we see this manifesting as solar is THE solution pitted against hydro-power being THE solution. Or worse, petroleum is THE answer and ALL renewables are impractical.

          A better approach is to view the matter as a comprehensive, largely interconnected system of integrated factors requiring a holistic strategy that can be modified as conditions or understanding changes. Simply put for illustrative purposes while solar is unavailable during the night, hydro can balance, but hydro in some dams leads to environmental challenges with aquaculture to electric vehicles are zero emission but relying on coal generations could produce more pollution than CNG vehicles. This is actually in-fact very simplistic as adding more dimensions such as increasing efficiencies, lowering consumption, and addressing spillover costs act as intensifiers to whatever benefits later are discovered.

          Rather than relying one perhaps one discipline of the scientific community or politics alone constricts progress. A largely ignored or at least untapped resource is to instil in the populace a desire and urgency to use the skill of the individual to propose or act in a manner to support positive change in energy usage or generation. We rely on a marketplace of ideas to tackle most matters, but constricting ourselves into only a few decision makers makes us vulnerable to their rather narrow channel of talent.

  16. How come England and Germany were mentioned as “Not only our closest allies like Germany and England have been making huge efforts to drop fossil fuels, but China is moving aggressively to avoid this “better world” model.” – – – but not France, which gets 40% of its energy from nuclear power???

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_power_in_France

    And, did anyone know that China:

    https://www.iaea.org/newscenter/news/how-china-has-become-the-worlds-fastest-expanding-nuclear-power-producer

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

  17. The left wants us to go back to killing whales. One of the immediate benefits of the experiment in western Pennsylvania was the whaling fleets went out of business or at least it should be seen that way by the greenies . Long one we need more research money and short on practical answers they advocate shutting down everything citing new sources that are insufficient producers …. so far and are all owned by the big power corporations.

    Meanwhile they say nothing about S. Calif digging two huge tunnels to run SF Bay and Sac River ecologies to their swimming pools and golf courses.

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