Totalitarian actions in the name of “climate change” threaten wildlife, people and freedoms
Environmental activism was evil and deadly when I wrote Eco-Imperialism: Green Power – Black Death 18 years ago. Since then it has gotten worse and worse, especially with the hysteria over the “looming man-made climate apocalypse” which is leading to ever more extreme demands to rid the world of fossil fuels and to ban or reduce modern living standards.
The demands have reached previously unimaginable extremes – mostly based on GIGO computer models and wild claims about planetary temperatures, weather, ice caps and disappearing wildlife. The claims have little basis in real evidence, but are presented as gospel truth by climate alarmists.
A group of extremists want to turn what they call “ecocide” into an “international crime” – and then prosecute and detain political leaders and corporate executives who have participated in the “mass ecological destruction” these zealots claim that it has now reached an order of magnitude “similar” to “Nazi genocide.
Others are campaigning for a “Great Reset” – demanding that companies reject their traditional roles and goals and instead focus on “saving the planet” and promoting racial and gender equality. Inevitably, this means that corporations must embrace “some level of eco-dictatorship”, corporate state tyranny and “top-down authoritarianism”. But in return, they will make huge profits by trying to replace reliable energy while lowering the living standards of the middle and working class in the name of climate stability.
The radical left routinely uses eco-hysteria and Nazi analogies to divert attention from the dire diseases and deaths they have inflicted on the “People of Color” of the Third World by giving them access to reliable energy, spatial insect repellant and deny modern agricultural technologies. Hurling these epithets at providers, users and defenders of fossil fuels is as wanton, malicious and baseless as the claims of the Nazis to justify the extermination of Jews, Gypsies, Slavs, the disabled and other “undesirables”.
In the real world, the real threats to our planet, people, wildlife and freedoms come from the green zealots who are demanding that we replace hydrocarbon energy with electricity generated by weather-dependent wind turbines and solar panels, and with half a ton of battery modules in the Tesla -Style.
This Green New Deal would reverse job creation, economic growth, the collection of revenue, and the benefit of human health and well-being. It would also cause ecological damage on an unprecedented scale in history.
The Harris-Biden administration aims to eliminate 80% hydrocarbon-free electricity generation by 2030, 100% by 2035, and fossil fuels by 2050 from all sectors of the US economy. To do this, coal and natural gas would have to be replaced to generate electricity; Petrol and diesel for powering vehicles; Natural gas for smelting and manufacturing; and natural gas for heating, cooking and hot water.
Together, this would increase the country's annual electricity needs from around 2.7 billion megawatt hours (the share of fossil fuels in total US electricity in 2018) to nearly 7.5 billion MWh per year by 2050. Significant additional generation would be required to keep the backup batteries charged for windless and sunless days to protect society from power outages, cyberattacks, and collapse.
To produce all of this power without new nuclear and hydroelectric plants, it would take tens of thousands of 850-foot offshore wind turbines, hundreds of thousands (maybe millions) of slightly smaller onshore turbines, and billions of photovoltaic solar cells. Well over a billion battery modules would be required to secure sufficient electricity nationwide for a week of windless and sunless days. To connect all of this and our cities would require thousands of kilometers of new transmission lines.
The number is sky high, because wind and sun generate only 25-50% of the year electricity in the best locations (less than 33% on the national average) and the more “green” electricity we need, the more turbines we have to set up and panels in Lower quality areas where they only generate electricity for 15-20% of the year. President Biden's plan alone to install 30,000 megawatts of wind power off America's coasts by 2030 would require 2,100 14 MW turbines. Even if they were operated at full capacity 24/7, they would not meet the peak summer electricity needs for New York State, let alone the coastal states or the entire United States.
Even if wind and solar systems avoid the most sensitive areas, they would disrupt or destroy landscape areas, farmland and wildlife habitats. Turbine blades would kill millions of birds and bats. Vibration noise from offshore turbines would interfere with the navigation and communication of whales and dolphins.
All of these turbines, panels, batteries, and power lines would require tens of billions of tons of nonrenewable iron, copper, aluminum, cobalt, lithium, rare earth elements, plastics, limestone, and other materials. That would require the mining, crushing, processing, refining and transportation of tens of billions of tons of ore – from thousands of mines and quarries with gigantic gasoline and diesel plants – followed by smelting and manufacturing, all using fossil fuels. None of this is clean, green, or sustainable.
These energy-intensive activities often use dangerous chemicals and release toxic pollutants. They require enormous amounts of water, often in the most arid regions of the world. They cause acid mine drainage, create mountains of waste rock and often lead to huge “lakes” of toxic chemicals.
This initial offshore wind program by Biden alone would require millions of tons of material, including 110,000 tons of copper. With an average of 0.44% copper in all types of copper ore deposits today, this means that 25 million tonnes of copper ore would have to be mined, crushed and processed for just these first 2,100 offshore turbines, after around 40 million tonnes of overlying rock would have been removed to remove the Ore body.
Add materials for solar panels, onshore wind turbines, backup battery systems, submarine and shore power lines, electric vehicles, electric heating systems and other technologies – and the “US energy transition” would require raw materials that exceed all world electricity and foreseeable mining and processing capacities . A global green deal would require the dismantling of half of our solar system.
Environmental fanatics insist that the United States continue to obstruct or ban mining, even to aid its great energetic, economic, and social restart. You and Team Biden insist that we outsource all of this mining, mostly to China. They don't care whether they endanger our national security or their supposed commitment to environmental protection, human rights and climate justice.
Chinese companies already control the mining and processing of many GND minerals that are mined in Africa and other countries; They make the majority of the wind turbines, solar panels, and batteries that go to the United States. They certainly do not adhere to US laws and standards for environmental protection, pollution, reclamation of mined land, occupational safety, fair wages, child and slave labor, or human rights.
Around 40,000 children as young as four were already toiling with their parents in the mines of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, for a few dollars a day, under constant threat of collapse and exposure to toxic and radioactive mud, dust and water – just about today Cobalt to meet needs that would soar under a Green New Deal. The cobalt ore is being sent to China for processing in facilities that have equally horrific safety and pollution conditions and have been linked to alarming cancer, blood diseases and other health problems.
A huge toxic landfill for wastewater from mining and rare earth processing in Inner Mongolia has destroyed agriculture and created serious health problems for workers and local residents. China uses Uyghur slave labor to build solar panels for sale to the United States and Europe.
Awakened climate and human rights activists become apoplectic when clothing and coffee producers and importers fail to meet their high standards of “fair trade”. Perhaps they should travel to Moscow, Kinshasa, Beijing, Xinjiang and Hong Kong, put on their ski masks and rage, burn and plunder for our planet, the rights of the Uyghurs and the “responsible procurement” of raw materials for the Green New World that they want to slip to us
Meanwhile, CFACT's Amicus Curie brief supports a multi-state lawsuit against the Biden government for its fossil fuel eradication plans and false claims about the “social cost of carbon”. It brings the much-needed reality into the “climate chaos” and the “renewable” energy charade, including the cost to humans and the planet.