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The Volokh Conspiracy » Renewable Energy Sprawl

June 13, 2011

The Volokh Conspiracy » Renewable Energy Sprawl.

In short, while wind and solar power result in lower greenhouse gas emissions, they require large amounts of land — and that’s not even including the need for transmission lines, or the energy and material requirements of facility construction. In the case of wind turbines, it takes approximately 50 tons of steel to build a single megawatt of capacity. Yet a single megawatt of gas turbine capacity can be built with less than one-quarter ton.

Barring any huge develops in the efficiency or miniaturization of renewable energy generation platforms, we are quickly learning that the eco-hippies and their pipe dreams of stopping carbon emissions come at a high cost.

It’s almost like they don’t realize that you don’t get something for nothing. But, ofcourse, based on their beliefs on monetary/fiscal policy at the governmental level, it should be obvious they don’t realize that….

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4 Comments
  1. texan2driver permalink
    June 13, 2011 10:17 pm

    Did you see the president’s speech at Cree, Inc. today? The location was ironic as a choice to trumpet job creation in this country since the company received millions of stimulus dollars (approximately $39 million), yet added only a handful of jobs here, but their “global” workforce grew from 1,500 to around 5,000. Interesting.

    “You’re helping lead the comeback of American manufacturing,” the president says. Interesting, since manufacturing jobs are still fleeing this country in droves.

    His economic team, lead by the totally non-partisan Jeff Immelt, says “So we’re taking a comprehensive approach with eight teams focused on specific areas such as skills and training, regulatory reform and innovation.” In other words, more government.

    How can they continue to peddle this stuff with a straight face?

  2. June 14, 2011 4:00 pm

    Craig: I’ll have to do some googling to find the supporting data but there is a lot of research out there showing that even with all of the “greenhouse gasses” produced and the ecological/geographic footprint caused by exploration & production fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and gas have an exponentially smaller impact on the environment while producing exponentially more energy.

    It was a ridiculous number but when you account for all the inputs (i.e.- mining, etc) a ton of coal produces more energy than hundreds of acres of wind farms or something like that.

  3. Michael Eaton permalink
    June 16, 2011 9:31 am

    “yet added only a handful of jobs here”

    “Since Obama’s first trip to Cree the LED industry has made giant strides to improve the efficiency of semiconductor-based lighting, with Cree at the forefront of that work. CEO Chuck Swoboda told Obama that Cree had doubled the efficiency of its emitters during that time.
    “In that time it has also hired nearly 750 new employees, with 180 jobs for scientists and engineers”

    http://optics.org/news/2/6/15

    How big are your hands, texan2driver???

    “So we’re taking a comprehensive approach with eight teams focused on specific areas such as skills and training, regulatory reform and innovation.” In other words, more government.”

    What?? Where do you guys get your definition of “more”?

    “It’s almost like they don’t realize that you don’t get something for nothing.”

    Um, no, Craig. The problem is that the “something” you get from oil and gas includes money for terrorists, totalitarian regime support, money going out of the country, OPEC controlled prices, worse environment, fewer resources, and a dwindling supply. Those do not add up to a sustainable future. Not really sure why you guys are so vested in that concept of a resource that will be gone before long… it is, curious.

  4. texan2driver permalink
    June 22, 2011 10:03 pm

    Thanks for asking. My hands are big enough to count that the 750 jobs claimed amount to $52,000 each in taxpayer funded stimulus money. Will the company be able to sustain itself WITHOUT more stimulus money to keep those jobs alive? My hands can also count the 5,000 some odd jobs Cree has shipped overseas during the same period. Evil conservatives.

    “giving Obama a platform to announce a new scheme under which his Jobs Council aims to train 10,000 new US engineers every year.”

    Great. More “schemes.” So far his schemes have gotten us record unemployment, record debt, a record housing bust, involvement in two additional military conflicts (law requiring congressional approval be damned). Please. No more schemes.

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