Europe’s Green Madness: Dieselgate Was A Political Disaster

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Starting after the Kyoto treaty in the late 1990s … Europe’s entire auto industry was led down the primrose lane of adopting a technology that now appears to be a commercial and regulatory dead-end. More than 70% of BMW and Daimler cars made for the European market last year were diesel. When honestly tested, one study shows the latest “Euro 6 Standard” vehicles miss their pollution targets by a whopping 400%. Virtually everyone agrees Europe’s “dash for diesel” was a monstrous policy error, not to mention the proximate cause of the emissions-cheating scandal that has engulfed Volkswagen and other auto makers. –Holman W Jenkins Jr., The Wall Street Journal, 15 February 2017

Britain’s nuclear power plans were thrown into chaos last night as problems escalated at Japanese company Toshiba.  The crisis has cast doubt over its plans for the ¬£10billion plant in Moorside near Sellafield which is supposed to provide up to 8 per cent of the country’s energy. It marks the latest setback to the Government’s plans to reduce carbon emissions and keep the lights on. –Rachel Millard, Daily Mail, 15 February 2017

U.S. House Science, Space, and Technology Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) today sent a letter to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Acting Administrator Benjamin Friedman requesting information on the Karl study following reports the study ignored NOAA standards, was rushed to publication, and was not free from political bias. “Allegations of politicization of government funded scientific research cannot be ignored. The Committee has a constitutional responsibility to conduct oversight in instances of alleged fraud, abuse, and misconduct especially where the government’s scientific integrity is called into question. Dr. Bates’ revelations raise additional questions as to whether the science at NOAA is objective and free from political interference. In light of this new information, the Committee requests the below information to better understand the depth and scope of internal debate at NOAA related to the Karl study,” the letter states. —U.S. Congress, House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, 14 February 2017 

As this week’s Oroville, California dam crisis illustrates, hydroelectric energy technology comes with a major yet infrequent risk: Catastrophic collapse and flooding. According to a March 2011 data analysis by reporter Phil McKenna at New Scientist, dams may be among the riskier power sources in the world. The analysis calculated the immediate and later deaths that occurred for every 10 terrawatt-hours (TWh) of power generated globally – as a point of contrast, the world makes about 20,000 TWh of electrical power a year. The data give a range of deaths for each type of power, but the ranking consistently places hydroelectric power as more deadly than nuclear energy and natural gas. –David Mosher, Business Insider, 13 February 2017

South Australia was warned of the electricity-shortage crisis ‚Äì and consequent blackouts ‚Äì yet ignored the warnings, according to Business SA executive Anthony Penney. “The most frustrating aspect of this most recent event is that it was anticipated by many businesses and other energy industry experts well in advance but, like the frog in boiling water, nothing happened in time,” he says. This week the SA frog boiled. About 100,000 customers were blacked out because of the reliance on unreliable wind and solar power in our network ‚Äì more than a third of SA’s generation capacity.  Ben Heard says the SA blackouts caused by unreliable solar and wind were predicted two years ago in the journal Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia, and every MP in the Parliament was told. –Miles Kemp, Sunday Mail (South Australia), 12 February 2017

Cap and trade was just one way of skinning the cat; it was not the only way,” Barack Obama declared after Democrats’ disastrous losses in the 2010 midterm elections. That shellacking finally killed off the Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade bill. From it was born the EPA’s Clean Power Plan and the Obama administration’s war on coal, in turn a contributory factor to Donald Trump’s election and Republicans’ retaining control of the Senate. Now the grandees of the Old Republican Establishment, led by former secretaries of state George Shultz and James Baker, are calling for President Trump to put the new Republican majority at risk by enacting an escalating $40-per-ton carbon tax. The Conservative Case for Carbon Dividends produced by the Climate Leadership Council is disingenuous and dishonest. An American receiving as much in carbon dividends as he pays in carbon taxes would end up worse off because the economy would be smaller and his consumer preferences suppressed. So a carbon tax would not contribute to economic growth but detract from it. –Rupert Darwall, National Review Online, 13 February 2017

Comments (11)

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    Rhee

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    >>the ranking consistently places hydroelectric power as more deadly than nuclear energy and natural gas
    Hydroelectric (and simple H20 storage) dams wouldn’t be deadly if the state governments performed their duties and maintained the facilities at working levels instead of siphoning excess revenues to pay for pet agenda causes unrelated to water and energy storage. Same as fuel taxes which allegedly pay for roads, nearly all of which are diverted to non-roads related pet agenda projects.
    With all due horror and respect for the citizens of Butte County (Oroville), this was an inevitable expected catastrophe, as pointed out by both environmental activists and normal citizens alike.

    • Avatar

      a6z

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      That used to be a low enough threshold for state governments to meet, reliably, even in California.

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    Manuel

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    Nuclear plants are the kiss of death for humanity

    • Avatar

      Sonnyhill

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      We all die, Manuel.

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      MCPR

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      You must be right, Manuel. I have worked in Nuclear Power for 40+ years now, and the “Plants” have killed me several times over. The children I had after I died from Nuclear “Plants” have also died from them. Additional evidence of the evil “Plants” can be found in the thousands of square miles of devastated territory surrounding each one.

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      Ed

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      Nuclear plants are absolutely necessary, if you’re serious about reducing carbon emissions. You really only have three choices:
      – fossil fuels
      – nuclear power
      – darkness
      Pick one.

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    Bevo Francis

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    I don;t know if global warming and green energy policies being promoted are bad or not so I don’t trust those promoting them.

    The reason is they all must believe the crisis is an incorrect fake story. Why you might ask. The answer is no one can prove their case. They lie and generate fake data all the time, so why should they be trusted for anything?

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    Fred Z

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    For a long time now too many people have failed to ask “Cui bono”, have failed to follow the money.

    Why do we have various varieties of weird, expensive light bulbs that simply do not last as long as claimed instead of ordinary, cheap incandescent bulbs? Because the manufacturers wanted larger profit margins, and got them because of our stupidity in accepting that part of the green fad. And that’s all it is, a fad, a stupid, fashionable fad that will soon be gone.

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      Chuck R

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      Disagree in part. Government mandates proved to be a hidden tax to fund development of an eventual acceptable solution. Lighting in the US consumes 15% of all electric power and is a worthwhile target for efficiency measures. Agree that CFLs proved a miserable solution to the problem – short lived, lousy color rendition and expensive. However, I have hope for the new LEDs when installed in a fixture specifically designed for them. I installed two outside 20W LED fixtures that provide ‘prison break’ levels of illumination for my house driveway, as good as a couple of 100W halogen bulbs. But LEDs benefited from development of flat panel displays/TVs driven by consumer demand, not the blunt instrument of government mandate.

      ps – don’t get me started on government mandated low water consumption stuff. I personally installed 6 of the 3 toilets in my house…..

  • Avatar

    CapittalistRoader

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    Be careful of both CFLs and LEDs. CFLs emit 25% more blue light than incandescents while LEDs emit about 35% more blue light. For outdoor use where you’re not staring at the light for any length of time LEDs are fine. But I use fluorescent for general lighting inside my house and incandescents for task lighting, reading, and other tasks that require using the light for long periods.

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    CrusaderRabbit

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    Traveling down another dark hole new energy standards compliant appliances provide a third to a half the service life of their counterparts from the pre-green period of manufacturing. Standards met while emissions, energy and materials for increased production are not a part of the equation.

Comments are closed