Politics

The Deadly Reality Of Eliminating Fossil Fuels

It’s been interesting to watch the increasing obsession with pushing green energy and the corresponding push-back against fossil fuels. Anyone with a brain knows this is a recipe for disaster, but the world is hurtling down that path anyway.

The strange thing is the left doesn’t want to wait until the infrastructure is in place to support a smooth transition. No, they want this transition done NOW, the peasants be damned.

In theory, of course, wind and solar power sound terrific. What could be better than harvesting energy from free, never-ending, eternal sources? In this fantasy world, fairies and elves manufacture smart phones and iPads out of cobwebs and blossoms, and stock grocery stores through magic.

The reality is green energy is anything but “green.” No one wants to discuss the brutal conditions under which cobalt and other rare minerals are extracted to build solar panels and EV batteries, or that electric vehicles need up to six times more minerals than conventional cars. And let’s not even discuss the untold thousands of birds literally incinerated by solar facilities.

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Wind is no better. Turbine blades must be replaced every 10 to 20 years, and since there’s currently no way to recycle them, they’re simply buried in a landfill like a mass grave. These monsters also have a devastating impact on wildlife; off-shore wind farms are killings whales, and endless birds – especially hawks and eagles – are butchered by land-mounted turbines. Real environmentally friendly, right?

And this doesn’t even consider the irony that many wind turbines are hooked up to diesel generators, which in turn leak thousands of gallons of hydraulic oil into the countryside.

Nor is wind or solar power cheaper than fossil fuels. Right now, the industry is being massively subsidized by governments. Remove those subsidies and see how much consumers are willing to pay for their green energy.

The misconception (or deliberate misinformation, take your pick) by the leftists is that fossil fuels can simply be replaced interchangeably with green alternatives such as solar and wind. They cannot. But that isn’t stopping the push toward so-called “renewable” energy.

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What enthusiasts don’t realize (or won’t admit) is how different life would be without the ease and convenience of fossil fuels. Right now, federal policies are targeting 80% renewable power by 2030, and 100% by 2035 – goals that are being termed “suicidal” for America’s power grid.

The inevitable result of this push against fossil fuels will be a drastic drop in living standards for first-world and third-world nations alike. While the more hard-core green-energy enthusiasts may applaud, these people have no concept of what life without energy would be like.

Dr. Wallace Manheimer, who holds a physics Ph.D. from MIT and has had a 50-year career in nuclear research, points out that before fossil fuel became widely used, energy was provided by people and animals. Because so little energy was produced, “civilization was a thin veneer atop a vast mountain of human squalor and misery, a veneer maintained by such institutions as slavery, colonialism and tyranny.”

This is why so many rich virtue-signaling celebrities are all for banning fossil fuels. What do they care? The peasants will supply their needs.

I live near the vast swaths of the Palouse, a farming region heavily cultivated in wheat and other vital crops. I can’t even begin to estimate how many people are fed by those wheat fields. Every summer, million-dollar combines march slowly across the landscape, vacuuming up the monocultures of wheat with eerie precision and efficiency. Not a grain is lost or wasted. In this manner, people all over the nation are able to purchase affordable bread. And that’s just one crop.

How was the Palouse (or any other agricultural region) cultivated before modern farm equipment? Simple: through horse (or mule) power. Animals dragged plows or cultivators through the soil. During harvest, teams of as many as 40 or 50 mules pulled mechanical combines across the field. It was backbreaking work for man and beast. Remember, “civilization was a thin veneer atop a vast mountain of human squalor and misery.”

In the old days before diesel tractors, oxen could plow perhaps an acre a day. A team of six horses could plow as much as five acres a day. Folks, that won’t feed the world’s current population, not by a long shot.

Without the force-multiplying powers of fossil fuels and modern machinery, that proverbial loaf of bread would become so expensive as to be unaffordable to the vast majority of people. The farmer’s own labors would, of necessity, have to shrink to provide just his own family and immediate community.

This is one of the problems with an increasingly urbanized society full of leftist do-gooders: People forget things don’t magically appear in their local grocery store thanks to fairies and elves. The wind and sun can’t power agriculture on the scale necessary to feed the nation, let alone the world. It takes a crucial and balanced dance of diesel producers, tractor manufacturers, farmers, harvesters, truckers, packagers, etc. working seamlessly to get grocery stores stocked.

And that’s just for food. What about water? What about sanitation? What about medical care? What about manufacturing? Everything – but everything – in modern society requires fossil fuels. None of it can be done on green energy.

The thing about all this green-energy madness is I’m an environmentalist at heart. I’m just as interested in saving the planet as your average lib – except I like to think I see things more clearly, at least clearly enough to see past all the greenwashed nonsense. And what I’m seeing is the world does not yet have the infrastructure – not even close – to support the green energy agenda the left so desperately wants, especially since they refuse to open their eyes to the damage they’re causing, from mining rare earth minerals to killing wildlife in droves.

To those who want to eliminate fossil fuels, I challenge you to live without them. And I mean totally without them, up to and including not using any products or using any services that involve fossil fuels at any point. (Here’s an article of one man who tried for one day and failed miserably.) Is this task impossible? Yes. That’s the point.

If the left gets its way and scraps fossil fuels for green energy, eventually they’ll realize it was absolutely the wrong thing to do (at least without sufficient build-up of infrastructure in advance). Tragically, for millions or perhaps billions of people, that realization will come too late to save them. Which is, for all I know, the ultimate goal.

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This article was originally published by the WND News Center.

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