It’s Not Quite The Inquisition They Wanted

| August 3, 2020

Michael Shellenberger is an environmental activist who has until recently been one of the “darlings” of the Lefterds who want to change our utilities so drastically that even electricity will become unaffordable for the average homeowner or apartment resident.

He is still an environmentalist, but is no longer someone who is hysterical about whether or not the planet is going to burn up in ten (10) years, and has published “Apocalypse Never” as a rebuttal to the ecohippies and so-called environmentalists, as well as the more greedy, money-grubbing political animals that we have in our midst.

The article at the link is his description of how he was treated by the House of Representatives when he appeared at their request (demand) to ‘splain himself, but would not let him do so, and the chairperson abruptly ended the hearing.

I repeat:  It is very telling that not only did the Democrats – who called the hearing – refuse to listen to him, but also shut the hearing down quite abruptly to stop his input. If this hearing was set up in response to the publication of “Apocalypse Never”. and they think that the planned multi-trillion dollar Green Agenda is threatened by what he published, they are scared. And they should be.  How much cash is going into their pockets that they will lose if the Green Agenda is not carried out?

The full article is at the link below.

https://quillette.com/2020/07/29/why-democrats-are-trying-to-shut-me-up-about-climate-change-and-renewables/

He is one of those people like Michael Moore, the bloated behemoth who suddenly switched gears a few months ago when he was helicoptered over a solar power installation in the desert, one that sits right on a migratory path for North American birds, and is not only destructive of wildlife, but also the environment itself.  Moore’s eyes were abruptly opened to the destructive results of these installations, and likewise, Shellenberger’s eyes were literally opened to the falsehoods of renewable energy.

There are others like Shellenberger, former rabid environmentalists who got thumped in the head by Mr. Reality when they realized that their demands being met will result in more destruction than benefit to generations down the road. Those people have, like Shellenberger, gone from being “woke” (walking dead) to being aware of reality, with the added reality of being on lockdown over CV19 restricting their freedom  and changing it into the nasty “do what I tellsya or else….”

This is from the article:

Nations that partner with Russia or China to build nuclear plants are effectively absorbed into their sphere of influence. The line between soft power and hard power runs through nuclear energy. On the one side is cheap and clean electricity. On the other, a stepping stone to a weapons program.

During today’s hearing, several Democratic members claimed that renewables today are cheaper than existing grid electricity. But if that were true, I replied, why do solar and wind developers require hundreds of billions of dollars from American taxpayers in the form of subsidies?

The Democrats are basing their climate agenda on what California did. But California’s electricity rates since 2011 rose six times more than they did in the rest of the US, thanks mainly to the deployment of renewables and the infrastructure they require, such as transmission lines.

Instead of answering that question, Democrats claimed that solar and wind projects were somehow part of the battle for environmental justice. In reality, I noted, solar and wind projects are imposed on poorer communities and successfully resisted by wealthier ones.

In fact, a major new report found nearly 200 cases of human rights violations when renewable energy projects were imposed on poor communities. In Hawaii and Nebraska, indigenous leaders are resisting wind energy projects that threaten native bird species, including the nene and whooping crane, whose number one cause of mortality is transmission lines.

Renewables also hurt working people by raising the cost of electricity for industries that offer good jobs with high pay. From 2011 to 2018, California’s industrial electricity prices rose 32 percent, while the average price in the other 49 states fell one percent. The good manufacturing jobs in renewables are mostly in China, which makes most of the world’s solar panels, including America’s, while the US is stuck with temporary low-wage service jobs installing solar panels and wind turbines, and doing energy efficiency retrofits. By contrast, nuclear power plants, which can operate for 80 years or longer, require high-wage, high-skilled, and permanent jobs for multiple generations.

What’s going on? Why do Democrats, who imagine themselves to be on the side of working people and the poor, advocate for renewables and against nuclear? It’s hard not to notice that some of the Democrats’ largest donors, including Tom Steyer and Mike Bloomberg, are renewable energy and natural gas investors. Even one of my main antagonists, Rep. Casten, was a renewable energy investor before joining Congress.  – article (Italics are mine.)

Note: the Democrats use the term “environmental justice”, a seemingly clever bit of lingo that, on the surface, appears to infer a beneficial outcome. The reality is that it is jabberwocky: verbal noise that infers an outcome when there is none, but will result in near bankruptcy of our economy and stall growth.  The level of corruption that runs through Congress is far higher now than it used to be. Always follow the money. Who is really profiting from renewables? Always follow the money trail. Always.

Michael Shellenberger is a Time Magazine “Hero of the Environment,” and president of Environmental Progress, an independent research and policy organization. He is the author of Apocalypse Never: Why Environmental Alarmism Hurts Us All

I suggest supporting him by getting a copy of his book and making your own decisions.  Also, I applaud you for taking the time to read this.

Category: "The Floggings Will Continue Until Morale Improves", "Truth or fiction?", "Your Tax Dollars At Work"

Comments (36)

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  1. John says:

    Excellent book. Finished last week and was impressed with his equitable and fair presentation of the information.

    His ordering of facts basically follow the pattern of presenting the current typical environmental agenda of information followed by his dismantling propaganda with facts.

    I found the most interesting part was the rampant misquoting of experts by reporters or media or GP/Sierra Club, etc to serve their own purposes.

    Recommend it to anyone.

  2. Hondo says:

    “More people died in Ted Kennedy’s car than in all US commercial nuclear power plant accidents in history.”

    If we were truly serious about protecting the environment, we’d be doubling or tripling the number of nuclear power plants in the US. They have less total environmental impact than any other type of power generation.

    • UpNorth says:

      👍🏼💯

      • KoB says:

        Spot on Hondo. We can all stay warm from and attribute Algorebull warming to the hot air generated by those people. My folks in NE, SD, and lower Commiefornia are bitching about the “green energy” problems, the high costs, the brownouts, ect ect. We can also generate energy from the massive amounts of taxpayer monies burned up by the scams, err proposals. Can we all say Solyndra?

        Down here in God’s Country the addition to the Savannah River Plant has been bedeviled by over-regulation, still ongoing. A major coal fired plant in Monroe County is still in the process of spending 12-15 BILLION USD on “scrubbers” and dust free coal handling bins, all the while the heavy metals are leaching into the water from the ash ponds. Westinghouse declaring bankruptcy because of over regulation, and not being able to sell the nuke power generating equipment. Who’d ever thought that Westinghouse would be a candidate for bankruptcy.

        Oblowme said he was setting out to fundamentally change America. Well they’ve made a real good start on it. Maybe all the money he and he cronies stole in the other “Green Energy” giveaways is what got AOC and her crowd on the band wagon. After all, it worked for Al so well.

    • MI Ranger says:

      Plus there is the conspiracy infomercial folks that say Nuclear Power took a hard turn away from lesser radioactive fuels and fissionable in order to create weapons.
      If you want to have some fun reading and deciphering facts from myth read some of the Thorium reactor websites. The one side says it is readily available and 100 times more abundant that uranium. Has a much lower half life, and can be used in small “portable” reactors…then the experts chime in and say: “yeah about that!”
      What it really comes down to is “Can you make a profit by creating a market or is it just for public good”.
      Here is a good article explaining all sides: https://www.forbes.com/sites/energysource/2012/02/16/the-thing-about-thorium-why-the-better-nuclear-fuel-may-not-get-a-chance/#1fbac81e1d80
      The Army actually had a plan a few years ago to have these small nuclear reactors as part of its contingency basing plans…and just rewarded a contract to develop them https://www.defensenews.com/smr/nuclear-arsenal/2020/03/09/pentagon-to-award-mobile-nuclear-reactor-contracts-this-week/

      • Ex-PH2 says:

        Thanks for the links. I will look into that.

      • 11B-Mailclerk says:

        “thorium reactor” means first building a conventional reactor to “breed” U233 by neutron capture in Thorium.

        Thorium in its natural state isn’t nuclear fuel.

    • 11B-Mailclerk says:

      As long as:

      We do not have disaster like Fukishima in a position late area.

      We successfully address what to do with the spent fuel, besides “leave it to pile up at the plant”

      A closed loop breeder/power cycle is an option. Plutonium cycle allows run-up of almost all the high-order waste, and properly structured, the fuel is not weapons grade without refining out unwanted isotopes.

      A uranium cycle is possible with breeder/power cycle. The resultant U233 is theoretically useful in a weapon, but it is so hot in hard rads and neutrons that it is very difficult to weaponize, although the US, USSR, and India did so, at least for tests.

      The newest generation plants have much promise, such as the “pebble bed” design that fundamentally fails safe if overheated. You have to work keeping it going.

      The waste issue is a key. We have to commit to either stashing it long-term, or reprocessing it enthusiasticly. No one seems to want it as a neighbor, in either method. Reprocessing, especially in a breeder/power cycle, is safer and lowers overall costs which is why it is opposed with flaming passion. It makes it viable.

      Note: India is investing hugely in a breeder/power program based on Uranium and Thorium, and is likely going to be a world leader in the field. They are very serious about going the nuclear-cycle route.

      https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/India%27s_three-stage_nuclear_power_programme

      • 11B-Mailclerk says:

        “Populated area”.

        Sheesh.

      • Hondo says:

        The French solved the long-term storage issue about 4 decades ago (reprocess to recover fissile material/short-term storage of waste to allow decay of short-lived isotopes and most radiation/glass encapsulation of long-term radioactive waste/secure long-term storage). We simply allowed Congress and enviro-whackos – specifically, the Nevada delegation in Congress and the anti-nuclear activists in the environmental movement – to hold the rest of the US hostage rather than do what was both technologically and economically feasible.

        The U233 cycle has its merits, though isn’t currently cost-effective due to current uranium prices. We never went that route commercially because of non-proliferation activists (“But you can reprocess that fuel chemically and get material for a bomb!!”) – though as you point out, actually building one without killing all the technicians involved via radiation poisoning is a decidedly non-trivial matter. (For similar reasons, reprocessing of U235-cycle fuel was also ruled out – though it’s not anywhere near as highly radioactive). And it also appears that India has run into significant issues with breeding U233 from Thorium; their doubling time for producing new U233 from Thorium is multiple decades (see the article you linked).

        Fukushima happened because the facility wasn’t built to withstand the correct level of earthquake resistance and experienced a larger-than-designed earthquake. As I recall, the facility initially survived essentially intact, but it’s on-site auxiliary power did not; when this wasn’t available, the reactor emergency cooling flow stopped and it melted down well after the original earthquake. The meltdown would not have happened had the facility been built to proper earthquake construction standards for the area in which it was located.

        You want to blame someone, blame the anti-nuclear enviro-whackos. They’re the ones that – through what I consider gross misrepresentation – turned the US public against nuclear power after Three Mile Island.

        • 11B-Mailclerk says:

          I state issues we have to overcome. Whackos are also an issue to be overcome.

          There is a good sci-fi story where scheming aliens give us 95% efficient solar panel technology. Their goal is for us to abandon high-density energy sources, and shackle ourselves to our star by preventing the research needed to power interstellar ships. Thus preventing us from rivaling the scheming aliens.

          Our scheming whackos want most folks shivering in their huts, in the dark. Assuming they allow them to continue to exist.

          Not -them- of course. -they- are not “surplus”.

        • NHSparky says:

          We would have as well, had the Carter administration not killed it.

          I remember going by CPP in Idaho when I was a baby nuke in training. Interesting place.

    • Commissar says:

      “They have less total environmental impact than any other type of power generation.”

      Yep, that is true. Until rather suddenly on of them doesn’t.

      That is part of why we don’t have twice as many as we do.

      And the reason we are not building more is purely economic. They are extremely expensive to build and operate and it takes almost two decades for the initial investment to start paying for itself.

      With fossil fuels still remaining cheap, and with solar and wind power dropping in price, as well as global investment in alternative energy research chasing several promising future technologies…

      It is a very high risk venture to invest in a nuclear plant right now.

      About the only way to do it is for governments to pay for much of the initial investment and largely shelter investors from the investment risk.

      China was doing this and had several nuclear plants planned until Fukushima. Which occurred at a time when alternative energies were really starting to show long term promise. This caused China to become the leading global in alternative energy. Investing more in future alternative energy technologies than the next three largest investors combined, including the US.

      And that says nothing about the increasing unwillingness of societies to shelter private companies from the responsibility for cleanup or cap financial damages if something goes wrong…

      The free market simply is not conducive to building a nuclear power plant right now.

      • Commissar says:

        Edit: Correction: extremely expensive to build and not that cheap to operate. Operating costs are competitive but it is becoming more difficult and expensive to operate waste disposal. Because Countries are increasingly expecting nuclear plant firms to manage and pay the externalities of nuclear waste.

        • NHSparky says:

          Bullshit.

        • Hondo says:

          In the US, the Federal government has had the legal obligation to provide long-term storage of nuclear waste since the passage of the Nuclear Waste Policy Act in 1982. The original deadline for beginning to do so was in 1998. See 42 USC, Chapter 108. Any number of sites on the Internet can provide the text of that part of the US Code.

          The Federal government has been collecting fees from nuclear power generators to support this effort (those fees have been passed along to customers, of course). By 2010, the fees collected were approximately 3 1/2 times what it had cost the Federal government to date on costs associated with long-term disposal efforts. Per court order, the collection of fees stopped in 2014; in 2016, it was estimated that the fund holding those fees should total about $35 billion (including accrued interest to date).

          https://www.powermag.com/the-u-s-spent-nuclear-fuel-policy-road-to-nowhere/

          Unfortunately, because of a monumentally boneheaded feature of that law (it actually gives state governments the right to veto storage repositories, even if they are on Federal property), no such repositories for commercial nuclear waste have ever begun operation. And it looks increasingly likely that none will during the next decade.

          Couple that with Carter’s 1977 decision to forbid reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel (to my knowledge we still don’t have any commercial spent fuel reprocessing capability), and you have a perfect regulatory FUBAR. Utilities were charged for long-term storage – which the Federal government has never provided. They also are required to store “temporarily” the spent fuel either on-site or in an NRC-approved off-site location. The inability to reprocess or place into long-term storage spent fuel means that the amount of spent fuel keeps accumulating. And even though the law mandates that the Federal government provide storage, it’s never done so – so utilities keep having to eat the increasing cost of “temporary” storage.

          https://www.world-nuclear.org/information-library/country-profiles/countries-t-z/usa-nuclear-fuel-cycle.aspx

          All of that asininity costs utility companies (and their customers) money. And most of it is additional cost that frankly should be unnecessary – and would be, if the Federal government would simply comply with existing Federal law.

        • OmegaPaladin says:

          Nuclear waste is not an externality, it is a government-induced problem.

          France and Britain reprocess their waste. In other words, they RECYCLE it. This is the only case where environmentalists oppose recycling. Carter had us stop reprocessing for the stupidest reason imaginable.

          If you recycle nuclear waste, you can reuse almost all of the fuel. The high-level waste is minuscule, and can be used for useful products like radioisotope generators for spacecraft, irradiating food to reduce food poisoning, and making items like smoke detectors.

      • 11B-Mailclerk says:

        Nuclear power is entirely viable if you get the left-lunatic-luddites out of the process.

        Most of the added cost is from regulations meant to prevent use, and thwart deployment, not prevent problems.

        The same technological innovation that makes oil cheap also will make nuclear power cheap. That free market succeeds time and again in doing so, unless sabotaged.

      • David says:

        “About the only way to do it is for governments to pay for much of the initial investment and largely shelter investors from the investment risk.”

        Can you say ‘solar, wind power, and electric vehicles’? I knew that you could.

      • OldManchu says:

        You misspelled “one.” It’s “one” not “on.”

      • NHSparky says:

        Please don’t lecture us about China and risk.

        Or if you do, make sure you’re standing just below the Three Gorges Dam when you bloviate.

      • MI Ranger says:

        As Hondo describes, the US is the only one that has made it expensive with all our over regulation. China and India continue to experiment in it and have continued to build plants. China has many planned Thorium plants (see my articles above) but they haven’t yet gotten their Fluoride based reactor to work properly to scale.
        As for “renewable” resources becoming cheap…only if the government subsidizes them. Even then they are not reliable, and certainly not “green” once you factor in the other things to make them viable…like batteries and rare earth metals (mostly coming from China). When you consider all of the strip mining that goes on to gather the necessary rare earth metals that go in to Solar panels, and batteries necessary to store energy when the wind is not blowing or sun not shining. As well as all the caustic toxic chemicals used to separate those metals from the useless other deposits mined with them (like Thorium) you have massive chemical waste sights filling in areas of China (which is why the US has so many regulations and activists). Check out some of the chemical contaminated sights in Russia and China some time and know how bad it could be without regulation. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/worlds-top-10-most-polluted-places/
        The problem with regulation is it can go to far and hurt progress (see Hondo’s post on Carter forbidding re-use of radioactive material).

    • NHSparky says:

      Problems abound with nuke, and they’re mostly self-inflicted.

      INPO was created as a self-regulation entity in addition to the NRC. And it’s doing a great job, to the point nuke plants are regulating themselves into early decommissioning.

      The biggest reason is cost. No utility, regardless of size, wants to invest $15-20 BILLION in a next generation AP-1000 plant when those costs won’t be recovered for at least 30-40 years. No nuke plant in this country turns a profit until it’s running >85% power.

      Compare a 1500 MW nuke to the same size gas plant. Yes, the gas plant has to buy fuel, but the construction cost is about 10 percent per MW of a nuke. Manning is another issue. Conventional plants run on about 1/4 the staffing of a nuke, only bringing in maintenance workers during scheduled outages every 12-24 months, much like nukes.

      Consequently, gas plants have a much higher profit margin, and much faster ROI. About the only way nukes are going to be seriously considered again is if natural gas prices double or triple from their current rates.

      That being said, yes, renewable energy sources are (without subsidies) far more expensive per MWh than nuclear and gas, and have a tiny fraction of the availability of conventional sources.

      But hey, at least it’s job security.

  3. AW1Ed says:

    How The U.S. Navy Remains The Masters Of Modular Nuclear Reactors
    James Conca

    You might be aware of the 98 or so commercial nuclear power reactors that produce about 20% of our electricity. But there are another hundred nuclear reactors that power 86 submarines and aircraft carriers, producing electricity, heat and propulsion.

    We think of small modular nuclear reactors as something new that will take nuclear power to a new level, and even marvel at the rollout of new iterations, like Russia’s new floating nuclear power plant. But in truth, the U.S. Navy has been operating and perfecting SMRs for 75 years. Work on nuclear marine propulsion started in the 1940s. In 1955, the first nuclear-powered submarine, the USS Nautilus, put to sea. This changed submarines from slow underwater cigar tubes to warships capable of sustaining 20-25 knots submerged for weeks or months on end. By 1962, the U.S. Navy had 26 operational nuclear-powered submarines with 30 more under construction.

    More and different classes of nuclear submarines followed, along with nuclear aircraft carriers and other ships. The first nuclear-powered carriers, the USS Enterprise completed in 1960, was powered by eight Westinghouse reactors. The USS Long Beach followed in 1961 as the first nuclear-powered cruiser with two reactors.

    The Enterprise continued in service to the end of 2012, even serving in the most recent Iraq War, a truly amazing record.

    More here: Forbes

  4. Poetrooper says:

    It appears the comment thread got sidetracked from Shellenberger’s main point which is the Dems and their whacko constituencies are hell-bent on destroying one of their own who dares speak the truth about their climate change and renewable energy lies.

    Shellenberger’s apostasy is the climate/energy equivalent of a black leader supporting Trump. He is a climate Uncle Tom and will be denounced as such.

    Again and again and again, the left is shown to be cynically dishonest and yet fools like Short Round continue to ignore their ingrained mendacity and worship their false idols.

    None are so blind…

    • SFC D says:

      Eventually, reality bites everyone in the ass one way or the other. Unfortunately, far too many learn nothing from that bite and continue to blindly follow their own questionable dogma. “There is nothing to be learned from the second kick of the mule”.

    • 11B-Mailclerk says:

      It is only a matter of time until more direct methods are used to prevent folks from escaping the Left plantation.

      Amazing how folks who genuinely care about the environment are denouncing the scams with the truth, while the scammers denounce truth-speakers.

  5. Richg says:

    I think nuclear power is good, and I think we should explore it further… I also think before we do so, we should attempt to clean up the mess that is known as the “Hanford Reach”. Our government has shown a particular ineptness in dealing with fissionable material, pathetic since some of it dates back to the second World War.

    • OmegaPaladin says:

      Hanford was a weapons production site. It was not involved in nuclear power generation or the nuclear fuel cycle. It is a problem, but it is not relevant to nuclear power

  6. A Proud Infidel®™ says:

    Another emissions-free source of electricity is Hydroelectric Dams which the loony-greenies screech about because of fish migration.

    • Penguinman000 says:

      There are zero sources of energy harnessed by man that don’t leave a footprint. Dams change watersheds and wild life. Solar requires caustic chemicals that hang around for a long time. Wind kills birds. Coal/gas/petroleum spews toxic byproducts.

      Everything we do impacts nature (which we are a part of). Instead of coming from the view point we should have an ecological impact we should take the view of getting the biggest bang for the buck long term.

  7. nobunny says:

    jabberwocky: verbal noise that infers an outcome when there is none

    See also: Commiessar

  8. 11B-Mailclerk says:

    No one expects the planet inquisition!

    (Grin)