"Renewables" Show Environmentalist Indifference

Thursday, December 05, 2019

I am pretty sure I've mentioned the following excellent point by Keith Lockitch of the Ayn Rand Institute, but it bears repeating:

Image by Andreas Gücklhorn, via Unsplash, license.
It is only on the premise that the environmentalist movement is truly driven by a concern for human well-being that its vehement attacks on carbon-based fuels (without which human life as we know it in the developed world would be impossible), its cavalier lack of any alternative plan, and its active opposition to proposed alternatives (whether real ones like nuclear or hydro, or fantasized ones like solar), make no sense.
With our negligent media touting renewables from here to Timbuktu, one could understandably wonder about the description of solar as fantasized. A recent post at the conservative PowerLine blog provides ample evidence from the Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow that this description is quite accurate. For example:
Using batteries to back up sufficient power to supply U.S. electricity needs for just seven straight windless days would require more than 1 billion half-ton Tesla-style batteries. That means still more raw materials, hazardous chemicals and toxic metals.
John Hinderaker notes further that this would cost "around $6.6 trillion for 24 hours [of] storage for the U.S. That is much more than the entire budget of the U.S. government." There is similar information for wind, as well as a plethora of excuses for the environmentalists demanding we implement these technologies today to turn around and oppose them tomorrow:
[W]ind turbines don't last long -- 20 years -- those massive disposal problems are now coming to the fore. Every wind turbine contains 45 tons (90,000 pounds) of non-recyclable plastic that must be disposed of in landfills. It costs hundreds of thousands of dollars to decommission each wind turbine.
The blog post reads a little like it is trying to argue against an environmentalist proposal on environmentalist grounds. That would be a mistake for a variety of reasons. But the information provided is useful for the purpose of illustrating the point that Lockitch makes: Environmentalists don't give a tinker's dam about human well-being.

-- CAV


Dinwar said...

"The blog post reads a little like it is trying to argue against an environmentalist proposal on environmentalist grounds. That would be a mistake for a variety of reasons."

It may be, but I think there are two good reasons to do it.

First, I think it's important to reject the package-deal of Environmentalism. What I mean is, there is a core of valid concerns. Humans generate toxic materials that have known, demonstrable negative effects on human health (TCE contamination can knock out or even kill construction workers, to give one example). Addressing those concerns is valid. We have to get rid of this stuff SOMEHOW. Each toxic chemical has a particular nature, and requires particular management practices. If you're going to build a giant stockpile of those materials, it's justified for your neighbors to wonder how you're going to handle storage and disposal!

Second, it's kind of fun to attack Environmentalists with their own weapons on occasion. The reality is that most Environmentalists know nothing about how to actually protect the environment. In my experience (I've been cleaning up hazardous waste for the last five years) they are incredibly short-sighted, and tend to be incapable of understanding any part of their schemes beyond the immediately obvious. It's useful to occasionally say "Okay, let's assume your premise is correct and see where this logically leads us", and then refuse to allow them to stop until you've explored ALL aspects of the question. It's almost certain that no one's ever done it before.

Most Environmentalists are suckers who've swallowed the bate (addressing objective risks) and don't realize they've swallowed the hook (hatred for human beings) until it's too late. I can see value in showing what Environmentalism means in Reality, because it can be a useful tactic in showing that they've been duped.

Gus Van Horn said...


Thanks. These are all fair points. I should have said something to the effect of, "It is a mistake to stop at showing environmentalist proposals fail even on environmentalist grounds." It's easy to end up conceding premises that we shouldn't.