Recent Energy and Environmental News – Christmas 2010
By John Droz, Jr.
This is the current issue of my informal, free collection of recent electrical energy-related developments. Since citizens are daily inundated with material coming out on this topic, I am trying to present a digest summary of the most pertinent applicable information. My bias is for articles that are: scientific, independent, informative, constructive, and/or well-written. (I would STRONGLY recommend that you SAVE these emails, as you might need links to some good articles in the future.)
At last count there are over 4000 readers of the newsletter. If there are some other open-minded people you think would like this newsletter feel free to pass it on — or provide me with their email addresses and I will include them in the future.
My core message is: Scientifically Sound Solutions not Palliative Political Pablum
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
What this translates to is that the policy statement of any true environmental organization should be the following:
1) We believe that we have environmental and energy issues, and
2) We believe that these matters should be resolved by applying the Scientific Method.
The Scientific Method consists of a comprehensive, objective, independent, transparent and empirical-based assessment. Anything less would amount to promoting a political policy rather than a science oriented one. Citizens should insist on nothing less from organizations they belong to.
Due to many citizens calling in, the “Omnibus” spending bill has died in the US federal legislature. That’s good news, and shows that citizens CAN have an impact.
On the other side of the fence, the “Tax” bill was unfortunately passed. One of their strategies for getting this through, was to do it before the media and citizens figure out what is going on — and this strategy succeeded… This is a wonderfully accurate cartoon:
“Christmas For Renewables” does a good job of summing up the perks renewables gained in the “Tax” bill, and some thoughts about 2011
Speaking of the US federal legislature, Ralph Hall is likely to chair the US House Science Committee starting next year. This will be a major improvement: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1210/46101.html
This is a VERY important article which discusses “RGGI” and other related initiatives. Among other things, it describes how ratepayer funds from citizens is used to fund environmental organizations. This whole charade needs to be identified and objected to — if not sued out of existence. See http://www.thenewamerican.com/index.php/usnews/politics/5466-cap-and-trade-by-stealth-us-states-partner-with-foreign-governments. Then there is this http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/29/nyregion/29greenhouse.html?_r=2&src=twrhp.
Another example of the US government eroding the freedom of citizens is the home energy assessment plan in the works. There is nothing the matter with giving citizens the option of doing an energy audit. However, from what I’ve heard, the eventual plan is that if your home does not meet a certain energy “standard” then you will not be able to sell it. For more info see http://www1.eere.energy.gov/buildings/homeenergyscore/index.html.
“The U.S. Bureau of Land Management suspended issuing wind permits on public land indefinitely this summer after wildlife officials invoked a decades-old law for protecting eagles”: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40640914/ns/us_news-environment/.
Here is an unusual collection of well over a hundred carefully organized energy related articles — covering wind energy, biofuels, nuclear, etc., etc. http://z4.invisionfree.com/Popular_Technology/index.php?showtopic=3425. Save this as a resource!
More indications about China’s real intentions regarding wind energy
A good legal decision about Yucca Mountain. Note the Nevada governor’s absurd position that he and the EPA expected to have environmental protection “for a million years.” http://www.nevadanewsbureau.com/2010/12/15/nevada-officials-disappointed-with-dismissal-of-yucca-mountain-legal-challenges/
“How to Change The Global Energy Conversation” has some good points, like “Stop subsidizing old technology that will never compete with fossil fuels and create incentives for innovation.” http://tinyurl.com/288cnmo
A good article about wind turbines http://www.tfa.net/the_freedom_association/2010/12/giant-wind-turbines-may-soon-be-ruining-a-landscape-near-you.html MAKE SURE THAT YOU LOOK AT THE SHORT “BROKEN WINDOW FALLACY” VIDEO ON THE LOWER PART OF THE PAGE!
“Cool the Planet with Natural Gas” is an article by a utility COE where he also disparages wind energy http://tinyurl.com/2auybu7
FERC’s plan to divvy up the cost of new transmission lines http://tinyurl.com/26enz2q
If you are looking up general wind project info, this site may help http://www.thewindpower.net/index_en.php
A NYT piece about Turbine Free wind energy
The Putting Some Balance To It Department —
“The Abdication of the West” is a disturbing report about the activities at the Cancun meeting. The reference to “transparent impenetrability” is particularly pertinent: http://sppiblog.org/news/the-abdication-of-the-west
Here is another report about the results at Cancun. My take is that it’s bad, but could have been a lot worse http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-11975470. Here is another reasoned analysis http://blogs.the-american-interest.com/wrm/2010/12/12/bureaucrats-swindle-greens-in-cancun/
An overview of the important upcoming US Supreme Court case about Global Warming
Somehow I missed this very big deal that happened in mid October: the chief Wikipedia proponent for Global Warming was unanimously stripped of his powers http://sppiblog.org/news/global-warming-propagandist-slapped-down-by-wikipedia Long overdue!
This report about “Taxpayer Funded Environmentalism” in the UK has several good points <<http://www.taxpayersalliance.com/tfe.pdf>>.
Dire warnings of immanent flooding of coastal cities due to icebergs melting — all in 1922
Special Holiday Message —
Although the last year has had several disappointments, there also have been numerous positive experiences. To me the best thing about being involved with this struggle, is meeting some wonderful people. It renews one’s faith and hope in mankind.
So I want to thank YOU for your efforts and sacrifices throughout the last year — especially those that went unnoticed and unsung. Believe me, the Big Guy is paying attention.
So the very best wishes to you and your family during this holy holiday period, and I hope that you have good health and much success in the New Year.
Here are two small gifts —
1) This unique band playing holiday music only on iPads and iPhones http://www.youtube.com/northpointministries#p/a/u/0/F9XNfWNooz4
2) Please watch this inspiring patriotic story, to bring us into the New Year http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=Iwa-lSVqA1M&vq=medium
john droz, jr.
physicist & environmental advocate