Friday Dec 09, 2022

2021 In Energy – The Year We Seem To Travel On Separate Planets – Forbes

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If 2020 was the year of the great energy disconnect, 2021 was the year the people carrying out the energy debate appeared to be living on different planets, floating aimlessly through time and space and never intersecting with each other, or even attempting to do so. Should this continue through 2022, the entire world will be the worse for it.

2021 was a year in which climate change became tangible. Regardless of whether humans had involvement in it, or even were its cause, it became increasingly hard to stick to the mantra that weather patterns remain relatively static when the Pacific Northwest reached temperatures exceeding 115 degrees and large tornado outbreaks hit in places like New Jersey and Pennsylvania, as well as in December in Kentucky. It seems clear now that weather patterns are indeed changing.

Many scientists and environmental advocates have a simple explanation for that, as well as a simple solution. They assert that the weather changes are being caused by global warming resulting from the “greenhouse effect” caused, primarily, by the use of fossil fuels. Get rid of fossil fuels, some assert, and you can hope to limit further climate change (although it may already be too late to undo the damage that has already been done).

Hard core advocates like New York Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have claimed that if we don’t end fossil fuel usage within twelve years (now maybe ten?), human life as we know it may even seek to exist.

Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg, who has become the face of the anti-fossil fuel movement, dismisses any potential international climate agreement as more “blah, blah blah.”

And what will replace fossil fuels? Why renewable energy from sources like solar, wind, and hydroelectricity, of course.

Were it only so easy.

Since the start of the Biden Administration on January 20, 2021, the United States has almost called a complete halt in building out (or even repairing and replacing) our existing oil and gas energy infrastructure. One of the new President’s first acts was to kill the Keystone XL Pipeline. After months of discussion, the Administration finally informed Canada that the United States no longer would attempt to close Enbridge Line 5.

No assistance has been given to the potential for unlocking the immense natural gas reserves located thirty miles west of Scranton, Pennsylvania, despite the fact that the New York Metropolitan Area, which faces potentially serious energy shortages should 2022 be a bad winter, is located less than 150 miles away, and despite the fact that the reserves in that location are not only abundant, but they are far less prone to contribute to global warming than other fossil fuels.

Instead, the Biden Administration has put nearly all of its energy eggs in the basket of increasing renewables. The bipartisan infrastructure bill contains $9.5 billion for research into hydrogen-based technologies, $7.5 billion for electric vehicle charging stations (meaning Elon Musk need not spend his own money on this, the taxpayers will do it for him), and nearly $1 billion for hydroelectric power and research. There is $65 billion for energy grid reliability and resiliency updates, but it remains a question of how much of that would go to grids transporting fossil fuels, as opposed to renewable generated electricity.

All of this is well and good, but while the people who still claim there is no climate change seem increasingly like they are ignoring the obvious, so too do those who assert …….

Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/danielmarkind/2021/12/30/2021-in-energythe-year-we-seem-to-travel-on-separate-planets/

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