Between recent events in state and local governments, the political dreams of some select Presidential candidates including one of the main candidates, Congressional and Senatorial campaigns and the abundant environmental NGO’s demands of candidates and governance, it is easy to extrapolate and draw an accurate picture. We have watched as coal mines and coal fired electric generating plants have been forced by government into closing their production, their generation of electricity or to an expensive changeover to natural gas and the current drive against the remaining coal plants and numerous oil powered plants to shut down or change to natural gas. Where the success has been most prolific there is a new drive, to close natural gas powered plants. Then there has been the court and legislative drives to criminalize fracking and close down any drilling or other harvesting of carbon fuels within zones such as schools, daycares, public malls, shopping centers, hospitals, residential housing or even any structure used by human beings with some demanding as much as a half mile setback which could have the effect of closing as high and three-quarters of all mining, drilling, fracking of other carbon fuel harvesting. Their intended goal is to have the majority of electrical generation come from renewable fuels or eco-friendly generation. The eco-friendly generation is where the problems arise. One might believe that hydro power would meet their requirements but one would be incorrect. Dams, you see, block rivers and thus prevent natural river flow and development and a number of environmental fanatics are demanding the undamming of rivers returning them to their natural flow rates and support for ecosystems. Then there is wind power but these are a danger to birds and until a safe and completely bird safe system can be developed they demand that wind turbines be parked to save the birds, especially those in the path of migratory birds. With even natural gas, the environmentalists’ favorite fuel, coming under fire where other fuels have been closed down or changed over to natural gas, what is now appearing to be a fool’s choice if natural gas is actually unacceptable as well.
So, what generation source would be acceptable to all the ecology fanatics? Even if wind power were acceptable, the demand for adequate production is beyond imagination. Industry and government data show that generating just 20% of US electricity with wind power would require some 18,000,000 acres of land, 186,000 turbines, 19,000 miles of new transmission lines, and 270,000,000 tons of concrete, steel, copper, fiberglass and rare earths. Just multiply these figures by five and add another ten percent for good measure and you would immediately realize that such an idea is ridiculously demanding. The ecology fanatics like to tout wave technology which is in its initial stages and should it become viable then these fanatics would find a reason that it endangered kelp or jelly fish or some other problem. There are those who claim that solar power generation is dangerous as it causes heat pollution. So do human beings simply by living generate heat, but perhaps we should keep that a secret before the environmentalists demand we take measures to prevent our heat pollution from destroying the delicate balance and possibly adding to the loss of glaciers. As far as we can figure, there is no generation of electricity or powering our vehicles which in the end would be acceptable to these fanatics. Yes, there are reasonable ecological dreamers whose demands almost make sense but they are outdone by the fanatics who apparently have no lack of energy in generating demands and petitions not to mention making grand displays and demonstrations against virtually every form of power generation.
The reasonable ecological warriors have also made a miscalculation, though we are wary of informing them, in their claims that electric cars reduce pollution. These electric cars require charging which can most easily be done one of two means currently. The first is to power a generator on the vehicle with a gasoline powered engine which pollutes just as a regular gasoline powered engine would and even more power must be generated to make up for energy loss in any system. The other and most used manner is to plug the car in overnight and charge the batteries. Well, where does that electricity originate. A power plant which, as the eco friends will inform us at every turn, generates pollution just as would the gasoline powered cars. All battery powered vehicles manage is to relocate the pollution and have it enter the atmosphere at night, the one time when the air formerly had an opportunity to be safer from pollution. Even if it manages to reduce the hydrocarbons spewed into the atmosphere, the difference is likely minimal and one need weigh whether or not the difference is worth trading the freedom of traveling beyond the range of battery power for such things as, what is that thing called where you drive a distance to have simply family fun time? Oh yes, a vacation.
We had an introduction granted us lesser people from Al Gore whose homes are simply unbelievable carbon powered heat sinks and anything but eco-friendly (see below). Let us also not forget that Al Gore jets back and forth in a private jet rather than using commercial airliners which would cut back on his carbon footprint, but Mr. Gore is one of the privileged and cannot be expected to rub elbows with the great unwashed. The same can be stated for another great enviro-warrior, Nancy Pelosi. You see Ms. Pelosi demanded a larger more fuel hungry jet for her trips most weekends from Washington D.C. to her home in California because she was put off having to stop and refuel somewhere, often Arkansas, in flyover country where those other people reside, how totally revolting, almost like gagging on a spoon like a valley girl. Many of the Representative and Senators have similar stories about how they abuse the atmosphere and pollute the air the rest of America breathes and then have the audacity of demanding that people drive cars which are death traps should they have an accident with the large Mercedes or Cadillac or whatever luxury chauffeur driven vehicle these servants of the people use at both ends of their personal jet flight home whenever they feel homesick. Granted, not all of the representatives of the people act with such lack of caring. Many do fly regular airlines and even use cabs or drive reasonable vehicles, but they are the exception. Then there is Bernie, I’m a humble socialist living a life like any little person, Sanders who made news in the Washington Post soon after the Democrat conventions. Let us quote, “Sanders family’s ‘new waterfront crib has four bedrooms and 500 feet of Lake Champlain beachfront,’ according to the Vermont newspaper Seven Days, which broke the news on Monday. Sanders’s spokesman, Michael Briggs, told us the home is 1,800 square feet (hardly a mansion). Jane O’Meara Sanders, the senator’s wife, said she had ‘always hoped’ to buy a home in the area, which has more of a country village vibe than Hamptons feel.” We wish our apartment was 1,800 square feet and sat on a 500 foot lakefront though our cozy little apartment five blocks from the Mediterranean Sea is sweet enough even if it is a little too close to Lebanon if another war breaks out. Let us return back to our eco-friends.
The one thing which is disturbing about many of the friends of Earth demands is for the human race to stop using any electricity, end the use of fertilizer, stop making things out of plastics, use only renewable energy sources, replace vehicles with alternate transportation such as donkeys and horses, and return to living as our ancestors did a thousand years ago. There is a small problem with these demands; it would result in the death of a vast majority of human beings on the planet. This of course would greatly please the ZPG crowd, the zero population growth. Believe it or not, there is another group which would claim that the loss of these people was but a good start. These people call for the reduction of the human population by ninety percent leaving only a small group of eco-friendly people who know how to live in a reasonable agreement with nature. Even these people are not the most extreme as there is a group which calls for the eradication of the human race as without people the planet would be in balance and the human beings are only a source of Earthly destruction. We have a simple policy with both of these last two groups, you guys first as it were your idea and we promise to live in a manner nicer to the planet. What we are not telling them is we have decided their sacrifice was sufficient for the rest of us to continue in relative comfort. Satisfying the insatiable is a foolish game as by definition they will never be content no matter how much the society bends to please them. Their idea of perfection does not include the rest of us and there is the problem. If it comes to us or them and they are the fanatics who believe there are too many people, then let them lead the way and we can call that our solution, sounds good, no?
Beyond the Cusp