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Posts Tagged ‘radical environmentalists’

Germany and Czech Republic Taking Different Paths with Nuclear Power

Posted by Steve Markowitz on October 26, 2011

Earlier this year Chancellor Angela Merkel announced Germany’s intention to shut down all of its nuclear power plants by 2022.  This includes all it was 17 nuclear plants.  Prior to closing some of its older plants, 25% of Germany’s electricity was generated by nuclear power.

Germany’s announcement is in response to Japan’s Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster earlier this year. Merkel indicated that Germany plans to replace its nuclear power with renewable energy sources including solar, wind and hydroelectric power stating: “We believe that we can show those countries who decide to abandon nuclear power –  or not to start using it – how it is possible to achieve growth, creating jobs and economic prosperity while shifting the energy supply toward renewable energies“.  However, admirable this goal may be, current technological and practical limitations make its feasibility in the foreseeable future unlikely.

Some European countries are taking a similar view of nuclear power as Germany.  For example Switzerland, who obtains 40% of its electric power from nuclear energy, announced last week will shut down all of its reactors by 2034.  Europe is already up to his eyeballs in debt.  Significantly increasing the cost of electricity, as these anti-nuclear policies will do, will make their significant financial problems even worse

However, other European countries have taken a more pragmatic view of nuclear power with Sweden criticized Merkel’s decision rightfully stating that it will drive up electricity prices throughout Europe.  France, who produces 80% of its electricity through nuclear power said after the German announcement that “there’s no way” for Europe to meet its CO2 emission-cutting targets without nuclear power.

Even more pragmatic is the Czech Republic who sees opportunity in Germany’s decision to stop producing electricity via nuclear power.  This week it announced an ambitious energy program that includes spending $25 billion to build five new nuclear reactors by 2025.  This will not only increase Czech’s electric generated via nuclear power from its 30% to 50%, but will also allow the Czech Republic to export power to other European countries including Germany.

At the same time Merkel announced the nuclear power plant shutdown she said: “We don’t only want to renounce nuclear energy by 2022, we also want to reduce our CO2 emissions by 40 percent and double our share of renewable energies, from about 17 percent today to then 35 percent“.  This goal will be hindered by the nuclear power plants’ shutdown.

While Ms. Merkel holds a Ph.D. in physics, she is first and foremost a politician.  She, like many other Progressive politicians, are beholding to the radical environmentalists who are against nuclear power, drilling for oil or natural gas, or spewing more carbon in the atmosphere.  The policies emanating from this radical movement will make it impossible for Europe to continue its current standard of living, irrespective of any resolution of its current financial crisis.  Should the environmentalists continue having their way, Europe need not worry about global warming, but instead many cold winters to come.

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Posted in European Union, Nuclear Power | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Wind Turbines Killing Bats

Posted by Steve Markowitz on July 20, 2011

The narrative often created by radical environmentalist is that energy production based on fossil fuels or nuclear damage the environment while “green energy” is clean and not harmful.  That simplistic view is convenient, but not accurate and clouds a broader agenda of environmentalists.

The post-gazette.com published a story of the dangers emanating from one form of green energy titled Pa. wind turbines deadly to bats, costly to farmers.  It seems that Pennsylvania’s wind turbines are killing bats, which will have significant negative  consequences for the environment.  The article points out that:

  • PA currently has 420 wind turbines that killed 10,000 bats last year.  By 2030, PA is projected to have 2,900 turbines.
  • As bat populations decrease, bug populations increase.  A bat consumes about 3,000 insects each night.  That means 100 will consume about 250,000 insects per night.  According to Miguel Saviroff of Penn State University, “that benefits neighbors and reduces the insect problem with crops.”
  • A turbine that killed only 25 bats in a year accounts for 17 million uneaten bugs per year.
  • It is estimated that in Pennsylvania alone, bats saved farmers last year $280 million of avoided costs.

Using radical environmentalists’ logic, we should immediately shut down all wind turbines and do a multi-year study on the effects of these “green” machines on the environment.  However, the extension of that lame logic would effectively shut down all energy production of any sort since they all have their “costs” to the environment.

Man is a polluter, period.  Any change he makes to the environment has effects and consequences.  The environmentalists know this and their attacks on certain forms of energy production expose their true motives.  To them the green movement is the Trojan Horse used in their effort to promote the true Progressive agenda; redistribution of wealth.  Hold on to your wallets!

Posted in Environmentalists, Redistributing Wealth | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Protests in Saudi Arabia Begin; Potential for Oil Crisis Grows

Posted by Steve Markowitz on March 10, 2011

Stratfor.com has issued a “Red Alert” on Saudi Arabia reporting that police used gunfire and stun grenades against protesters in the Shiite-populated city of Qatif in its eastern oil region. In addition, a “Day of Rage” protests have been called for tomorrow on Facebook by some Saudi dissident groups.

It is too early to determine if Saudi Arabia is catching a bad case of the Tunisian/Egyptian flu or merely sneezing.  However the signs are very troubling.  With Saudi Arabia being America’s largest supplier of oil, should it fall into turmoil there is no telling how high oil prices will go.

For years the West including the United States have allowed the radical environmentalist and Global Warming zealots to run wild as if there were no consequences to their radical agendas.  That willful dumbness will no longer pass the smell test.  While there are environmental dangers that may occur from the use of fossil fuels, the results of $200 per barrow oil is real and here now!  Not only will economies head south in such an economic environment, but people in third world countries will starve with the cost of food skyrockets up.

America’s dependence on Middle East oil did not have to happen.  The environmental radicals who first stopped America from developing nuclear power and later shut down the Country’s oil and gas exportation caused this predicament.  They and their Progressive friends in Washington are responsible for the consequences of these irresponsible acts.

Now, we must react and take drastic corrective steps.  It takes five years or more to bring new nuke plants on line.  Fossil fuels are available in North America in shorter time periods and are therefore the only short to medium term solutions available to us.  Drill baby drill and now!

 

Posted in Middle East, Oil | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Middle East Turmoil Proves the Need “Drill Baby Drill”

Posted by Steve Markowitz on February 2, 2011

With the 24-hour news showing pictures of the Egyptian chaos continuously, many are focused on the lawlessness in that country.  Many are also concerned as to what form of government will emerge Egypt after the chaos subsides.  The outcome of these issues will have far-reaching effects on the Middle East and greater world.  This will play out in Egypt and the other countries that will be enveloped in similar situations with the Untied States being but a bystander.

The current Egyptian events again bring the forefront the issue of America’s dependence on oil from unstable regimes in the Middle East.  While Egypt is not an oil producer, the Suez Canal is important in the supply chain for oil.  In addition, the instability with other Middle Eastern countries increases the shipping risk at the chokepoint that is the Straits of Hormuz.

The danger of America’s oil dependence on risky sources should have been addressed years, if not decades ago. However, politicians, mainly on the Left, banded together with radical environmentalists to hinder America’s production in coal, oil and nuclear energy.

Besides the national security argument that clearly shows the insanity of America’s energy policy, there is also a strong economic argument.  Below are two charts; one showing crude oil spot prices and the other natural gas spot prices from January 4, 2010 to February 1, 2011.  While both commodities serve similar purposes, their pricing history during this period has been quite different.  Crude oil prices hit a record high for this period this week and will probably go higher . For the same period, natural gas prices have significantly decreased from its highs.  The reason for this discrepancy is simple: we are dependent on shaky governments for crude oil with natural gas coming from within United States.

If the United States was lacking in its own energy resources, our use of foreign oil could be justified.  However, given the massive amounts of energy resources in North America, there is no excuse for America to be dependent on foreign sources.  Environmentalists and their comrades have come up with all sorts of excuses and legal moves to stop America from developing its energy resources.  While some of their concerns are valid, there is no greater threat to the United States, both economically and for national security, than being dependent on energy supplies from countries that have disdain for our culture.

The United States must immediately embark on a strategic program towards real energy independence, a goal that is doable.  Unlike previous false efforts, this program must include a plan with mandated dates for achieving predetermined goals, such as amounts of new energy supplies discovered and putting  nuclear power plant production on the fast-track.  Such a program would be similar in size and scope of President Kennedy’s plan to put a man on the moon within the decade of the 1960s.  However, the program would require bold leadership, something our current President has shown little of during his first two years in office.  In fact, his tactical approach to energy issues has hamstrung energy development in United States, focusing excessively on green technologies that do little to cut America’s dependence on foreign energy and merely creates large for companies such as General Electric.

During the presidential campaign, Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin used the slogan; “drill, baby, drill”.  This should be a national rallying cry for what will should America’s most important program of this generation.

Posted in National Security, Oil | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »