Obama’s Unrealistic “Green” Policy (Part 1)

Green energy is at this stage in American History a concept that is idealistic, not realistic. Electricity comes from five different sources: sun, wind, water, atoms and coal. We already know from scientists that sun and wind farms cannot produce enough energy on their own to supply the nation’s need for electricity now. In addition, sun farms with their vast array of mirrors take up enormous amounts of space as do wind farms. That is why they are supplements to the electric grid system.
Power supplies must be close to where the power is demanded. In the eastern part of the United States, this limits where sun and wind farms can be located because of the topography of mountains, hills, rivers, streams, etc. Environmentalists rage against any project that would disturb the environment and animal habitats. So where would you put these energy farms in sufficient quantities to provide all of the needed electricity?
Water power can only be produced by building dams but dams can only be built in certain areas; therefore, geography is a factor because of our river system. So we have a limited number of dams that produce some by not enough electricity.
Atomic energy as a fuel source is controversial. It’s suppose to be cheaper but there is always the threat of a Chernobyl or Fukushima. Most people have probably forgotten we had a close call back in 1979 with the Three Mile Island plant in Pennsylvania. A near melt-down triggered a massive evacuation of people. Radioactive waste water was flushed into the Susquehanna River. Although the government denied there was any danger to people or the environment, it still took one billion dollars to clean up the mess. We only need one major malfunction at an atomic plant to produce a disaster.
Coal is by far is the most common source of fuel for electrical plants today. The United States has a plentiful supply of coal but it comes out of the ground and alters the terrain where it is mined. When you add the emissions when coal is burned, you have another environmental set of problems. Over the years, the government has reacted by passing legislation limiting the emissions. This added cost to consumer electric bills.
Finally, there is the fundamental issue of power grids. Power grids are limited in scope. Demand already overloads these grids causing rolling black outs during peak hours in the summer. Building more grids will increase the price for energy because power companies always pass the cost on to consumers. Besides, where would you build enough stations and sub-stations to carry the electricity? You can bet that environmentalists would have something to say about it and they would not necessarily be located in the most cost efficient locations.
My point is that there are limits on energy. The Obama administration wants more green energy in the form of solar power and electric cars. We know that solar and wind power cannot produce enough energy for our energy needs. Hybrid cars just increase demand for our limited electrical capacity. Demand always drives prices up. Higher electrical bills would eventually supplant the cost of gas at the pumps if we became a nation of electric cars.
So what fuel sources would be required to meet this increased demand for electricity? It cannot be solar or wind power for the reasons cited above. If power grids cannot meet the demands for electricity with green energy, we will need to go to the atom or coal more. Well, these two sources of energy are already available.


About camden41

Retired public school administrator Retired history professor: Taught Western Civilization, American Civil War, United States History, Economic History, Ancient & Medieval Foundations, American History Since 1945
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