I wanted to look at who has been doing the most to cut carbon emissions. Then we’ll look at whether the secular left supports the technologies that achieved actual cuts in carbon emissions. Then we’ll look at the technologies that the secular left supports, to see whether they achieve similar success. Then we’ll draw a conclusion about the environmentalism of the secular left.
Let’s start with the data on carbon emissions. As you can see from the graph above, the biggest offenders are China and India. These countries make a show about caring for the environment to shame America, but the truth is that they are the biggest polluters of all, and getting worse.
Daily Wire reports:
The United States led the entire world in reducing CO2 emissions last year while also experiencing solid economic growth, according to a newly released report.
“The United States saw the largest decline in energy-related CO2 emissions in 2019 on a country basis – a fall of 140 Mt, or 2.9%, to 4.8 Gt,” The International Energy Agency (IEA) reported on Tuesday. “US emissions are now down almost 1 Gt from their peak in the year 2000, the largest absolute decline by any country over that period.”
[…]The IEA noted that 80% of the increase in CO2 emissions came from Asia and that China and India both contributed significantly to the increase.
So how was America able to do that? The answer is that they they adopted zero-emission technologies, specifically fracking and nuclear power:
[…][C]heap, natural gas, made available by fracking, has already made the U.S. the world leader in carbon emissions reduction. By allowing gas to displace coal as the leading fuel for domestic power generation, fracking has already done more to reduce emissions than the combined activity of all the environmental activists in human history. Renewables such as wind and solar, which still play only a minor role in generation, cannot operate without the flexible backup that gas provides for those times when the wind stops and the sun sets or goes behind a cloud.
Natural gas will help reduce carbon emissions in the short run. But nuclear is the only long-term answer if you’re worried about climate change.
It should be noted that the secular left opposes both fracking and nuclear power, and that’s because they’re either lying about their concern for the environment (possible) or they think that renewable energies like wind and solar can do the job. But can they?
Far-left NPR explains:
While most of a turbine can be recycled or find a second life on another wind farm, researchers estimate the U.S. will have more than 720,000 tons of blade material to dispose of over the next 20 years, a figure that doesn’t include newer, taller higher-capacity versions.
There aren’t many options to recycle or trash turbine blades, and what options do exist are expensive, partly because the U.S. wind industry is so young. It’s a waste problem that runs counter to what the industry is held up to be: a perfect solution for environmentalists looking to combat climate change.
It’s difficult to transport the blades. There are few landfills big enough to accommodate them. And no one has the expensive equipment to cut them down to smaller sizes. But wait! There are more problems.
My problems with wind and solar power are simple. They are extremely expensive, which raises the cost of electricity to consumers and businesses. They are extremely unreliable, and require constant maintenance and backup-support from traditional high-pollution sources. And most importantly, they mass murder birds, including protected birds, by the millions. That last reason along is enough to make me oppose them. I love birds!
Forbes magazine points out problems with the wind and solar power favored by the secular left:
In reality, solar farms require hundreds of times more land, an order of magnitude more mining for materials, and create hundreds of times more waste, than do nuclear plants.
And wind farms kill hundreds of thousands of threatened and endangered birds, may make the hoary bat go extinct, and kill more people than nuclear plants.
We can find out what happens when the secular-leftists get their way on energy policy by looking at France and Germany, where it’s already been tried:
Just contrast Germany and France. Germany has done much of what the Green New Deal calls for. By 2025 it will have spent $580 billion on renewables and related accoutrement, while shutting down its nuclear plants.
All that Germany will have gotten for its “energy transition” is a 50% increase in electricity prices, flat emissions, and an electricity supply that is 10 times more carbon-intensive than France’s.
[…]France spent $30 billion on renewables and saw the carbon intensity of its electricity supply, and electricity prices, rise.
France and Germany and every other real world situation prove that nuclear power is the only way to significantly, deeply, and cheaply decarbonize energy supplies, and thus address climate change.
The problem with nuclear is that it doesn’t demand the radical re-making of society, like renewables do, and it doesn’t require grand fantasies of humankind harmonizing with nature.
Nor does nuclear provide cover for funnelling billions to progressive interest groups in the name of “community-controlled renewable energy, local organic agriculture, or transit systems.”
The secular left opposes zero-emission technologies like fracking and nuclear, and there’s a reason for that. Those technologies reduce the cost of electricity. Which means that people can use as much electricity as they like. But the secular left doesn’t want people to have low-cost electricity. They can only NATIONALIZE the energy industry (i.e. – COMMUNISM) because people complain about the high costs of electricity. The secular left has already been pursuing this policy of raising the cost of education and healthcare with government subsidies and regulations, in order to convince voters that the only solution to (artificially) inflated costs is for government to step in and take control. In countries like Canada, this is the exact model they adopted, (e.g. Ontario Hydro under Kathleen Wynne), in order to raise the prices of electricity. That is their real goal.
We do not want this, because the seizing of private property, redistribution of wealth, and nationalization of industry are precisely the policies that lead countries like Venezuela and Cuba into long-term poverty. The secular leftists don’t care if the quality of your utilities, education and health care drop precipitously because it is run by the government. Their goal is for the elites to fly around in private jets with armed security, while the little people wait in bread lines for food, wait for health care for months, and are indoctrinated to love communism in college.