I have a friend in my office who is very keen on wind and solar. He treats it like a technological problem, and he’s so excited about what discoveries scientists could make to get us off of non-renewable energy sources. In this post, I wanted to look at how the green energy project is working in different places, and then conclude by explaining why Christians should care about this issue.
So, close to home, the state of California heavily committed to developing “green” energy. How is that working out for them?
Here is a recent article from Reuters, a far-left news wire:
California, struggling to balance its clean energy push with the need to boost tight power supplies and avoid rolling blackouts, will lean more on fossil fuels in coming weeks to keep the power on if scorching heatwaves stretch its grid.
The Golden State, which has among the world’s most aggressive environmental policies, faces a potential supply shortfall of up to 3,500 megawatts during peak demand hours in the coming weeks. That is about 2.6 million households worth of electricity supply.
Governor Gavin Newsom plans to fill that gap in part by allowing industrial energy users to run on diesel generators and engines, according to a recent emergency proclamation.
California spent a lot of money on their green energy sources, and they are having to fall back on non-green sources because their plan didn’t work. This isn’t even to mention how much damage their expensive policies have caused to vulnerable bird and bat populations, as well as their constant forest fires. And their electricity prices are extremely high, which disproportionately affects the poor in their state.
Going up north, we find out how green energy is working in socialist Canada.
The Fraser Institute, a non-partisan think tank, reports:
In 2005, Ontario’s provincial government started a process to phase-out its coal-fired plants, one of the province’s least expensive and most flexible sources of generating electricity. Ontario shuttered its last coal plant in 2014 and made it illegal to build any more. In addition, the province launched its Green Energy Act in 2009, which mandated expanded production of renewable energy and encouraged energy conservation.
The result? Ontario now has the fastest-growing electricity costs in Canada and among the highest rates in North America. Furthermore, subsequent research showed that the shutdown of coal plants raised electricity rates in the province but provided few environmental benefits. Indeed, one analysis found that, had the province simply continued with retrofitting coal plants, it could have achieved similar environmental benefits at one-tenth the cost of the green energy programs.
I’ll be saying more about why Christians should care about higher electricity prices, but for now, just note that this isn’t even working in far-left countries, where there is more buy-in from the voters.
The highest electricity rates in the world are currently being paid by residents of Germany. A while back, Germany decided to transition completely off of non-renewable energy. How did that work out for them?
The far left Bloomberg News reports:
One of Germany’s biggest challenges in the fight against climate change is to keep the lights on.
As Europe’s biggest economy shuts its last nuclear reactor next year and utility RWE AG warns that coal plants may close earlier than planned, critics say green energy isn’t being added quickly enough. Germany’s ability to meet peak demand is poised to shrink rapidly over the next two years, increasing the risk of blackouts.
[…][German Chancellor Angela] Merkel admits her government got it wrong. Power demand will probably increase more than official forecasts by the end of the decade, she said in June. A month earlier she recognized that increasing local opposition and too much bureaucracy have curbed investments in green power.
So, why should Christians care about this? We should care, because higher energy prices eats up the money we use for our Christian goals. One of our Christian goals should be to educate our children in a way that preserves their Christian beliefs. It’s become abundantly clear that most public schools are not good partners for Christian parents who have this goal. The most reasonable option is to pull the kids out of public schools and go with a private school, or homeschooling. But that costs money. In fact, money is useful for all sorts of goals that Christians might have – from buying books, to giving to charity, to being able to walk away from a job that violates their consciences, etc. Money is important for Christians. And when it gets eaten up by higher electricity costs, we have fewer options to run our lives the way we want.