Thursday, August 22, 2013

Environmentalists Block Sensible Solutions To Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions

A case can be made that the "greens" are often the biggest enemy of reducing greenhouse gas emissions utilizing methods that do more than simply reduce economic activity. The roadblocks the environmentalist put in the way of the development of energy sources hugely hinders the deployment of lower polluting solutions.
An effective energy policy would first seek to allow solutions to develop. If we want to shut down coal plants, don’t make it difficult to replace them.  Such a simple statement, however, one that is oddly prohibited by current policy.  Regulation makes it difficult to obtain permitting for new facilities, as an example water permitting can takes about five years before a construction permit can even be issued.  Want to build a nuke, better start permitting 10-years in advance.  Want to replace old reactors with new reactors, getting a design license through the Nuclear Regulatory Commission takes upwards of 15-years.  Want to build a new combined cycle plant, but you don’t have pipeline access.  Good luck getting the right-of-way for the new pipeline.  Our solution to this is to mandate clean energy, give subsidies, loan guarantees, fund extra research, create dedicated national laboratories, etc. None of these solutions address the fundamental problem, i.e. we presume to know what is best and prohibit meaningful action.  The climate crisis, the energy crisis, the anything crisis are a result of our continued interference and meddling presuming knowledge we don’t have.

Read the entire post by Cal Abel

If the Tea Party ever moves away from their denial of climate change, addressing the above hurdles to the development of cleaner energy sources would be productive.

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