The Staggering Costs of Decreasing CO2 Emissions

Climate extremists, like other hucksters, usually emphasize how their favored policies (decarbonization in this case) will avoid various alleged disasters, which never seem to happen except in the distant future. Rarely do they explain what these efforts will cost. Rather, the true believers always claim that the costs are small, even though they actually are not. The costs include (1) higher prices for usable energy, (2) lower reliability of energy supply, and (3) reduced plant growth compared to what there otherwise would be. Higher energy prices are the most easily measured and understood of these costs, and were the basis for the recent Yellow Vest riots in France.

(1) There is a dramatic relationship between wind and solar capacity per capita and electricity costs; wind and solar capacity explains 84 percent of electricity cost variations between different countries in Western Europe. This suggests that prices are highly sensitive to wind and solar capacity. Unfortunately, this is only rarely discussed in public media.

(2) The costs of reduced reliability are also quite substantial, but usually do not become apparent until there is a major supply outage. Most electricity consumers are aware of what energy supply outages can do to normal life. The result is that productivity takes a huge fall as everyone is thrown back to an earlier life where the primary objective is to survive. With modern electronics the impact is even higher than just a few decades ago. Some energy users attempt to mitigate it by buying and installing expensive alternative sources of energy such as electric generators. Measuring the costs of energy outages is quite difficult, but the higher the level of the technology, the higher the costs. Each time a fossil fuel or nuclear plant is “retired” or allowed to become less useful in meeting demand, reliability decreases, and electrical costs and rates increase.

(3) Furthermore, actually reducing CO2 emissions would have tragic effects on the natural world, particularly plants, which do better at higher levels of CO2. This issue is important for every human on Earth to vigorously oppose the climate extremists. They are leading the way to a real disaster during the next ice age, not the fake disasters that they specialize in.

The staggering costs of wind and solar are dramatically illustrated by the newly approved offshore wind project in the Atlantic Ocean off Norfolk, VA. The costs are estimated to be 26 times the wholesale electricity costs in Virginia even though the resulting electricity will be much less useful since the availability of the resulting power will be substantially different than the demand for it. Virginia electricity users will pay the higher costs; they are not being given any choice. Could it possibly be that Virginia’s Governor thinks that this might help him to get the Democratic nomination for President? Surely he cannot believe that this project will help Virginia electric ratepayers.

via Carlin Economics and Science

December 28, 2018 at 08:23PM

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