Tag: Energy Policy

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Counting the Cards in Nevada

 

President Trump is putting Nevada in play for the 2020 election. The Yucca Mountain nuclear waste storage project has always been a political hot potato and a hole in the ground into which Congress pours money. Senator Dean Heller, like Senator Reid before him, is opposed to the Yucca Mountain project, and there are likely not the votes to force the issue. Now the story in important Las Vegas news outlets is President Trump is on Nevada’s side.

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James B. Meigs joins City Journal senior editor Steven Malanga to discuss the limitations of renewable energy and the need to expand nuclear technology as a source of clean and reliable electricity.

For nearly four decades, environmental activists have opposed nuclear power in favor of “green” energy. But as Meigs writes in the Winter 2019 Issue of City Journal, “nuclear power is finding new pockets of support around the world.”

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Loose Cannons and Nuclear Buttons: Dealing with Russia

 

Every time I see “statesmen” foaming at the mouth about insufficient posturing against Russia, I go back to the basics. There are exactly two countries on this planet capable of reducing any country on the face of the earth to toxic, smoldering ruins in hours. These are the United States of America and the Russian Federation (the latest manifestation of the Russian empire).

President Trump has done an admirable job, like most presidents in the Atomic Age, of keeping the natural tensions between the two megadeath powers inside the safety limits. He has succeeded, so far, despite the worst efforts of his domestic enemies, who are more serious about destroying him than they are about national security.

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Richard Epstein looks at Donald Trump’s recent executive orders on energy and environmental issues, explaining how free-market economics can be reconciled with good environmental stewardship.

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Victor Davis Hanson explains how political and cultural changes in California have eroded the state’s status as a national leader.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Subsidy Upon Subsidies

 

1200px-Indian_Point_Nuclear_Power_PlantConfronted with a grassy bump in a playing field, a normal person would simply level it out to match the rest of the turf. But when government is put in charge — and egged-on by lobbies — the more common solution is bring in truck-load after truck-load of soil to raise the entire field to match the bump. For the latest and most cussedly frustrating example of the phenomenon, Ron Bailey brings us this report on energy subsidies in New York State:

Unable to compete with heavily subsidized wind and solar power or electricity generated using cheap natural gas, the operators of four upstate New York nuclear reactors were planning to shut them down. Closing the plants would be a significant setback for Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s ambitious plan to reduce the state’s carbon dioxide emissions from the electric power sector. Currently the state gets 32 percent of its electricity from nuclear power, 19 percent from hydropower, 3 percent from wind, and 0.1 percent from solar. Burning natural gas currently generates about 41 percent of the state’s electricity with the remainder from coal and oil.

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Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Clinton’s Solar Panel Plan Leaves America in the Dark

 

hillary solar panel

On Hillary Clinton’s campaign website, she calls for the creation of 500 million new solar panels to “power every home in America.” Voicing a strong preference for solar may win over the hearts of some environmentally conscious voters, but it should not win over their minds. A proposal to comprehensively retool the nation’s energy systems to solar power ignores a couple of very basic, yet critically important, complications.

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Member Post

 

  I write a weekly book review for the Daily News of Galveston County. (It is not the biggest daily newspaper in Texas, but it is the oldest.) My review normally appears Sunday. When it appears, I post the previous week’s review on Ricochet.  More

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Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Solar Revolution? Don’t Hold Your Breath.

 

Ivanpah_aerial_shotThe $2.2B Ivanpah Solar Power Facility is in the news and in danger of closure for underperforming on its contracted power production. If you are a Ricochet reader, you are probably not surprised, but early results from Ivanpah and two other large scale solar power installations — the Desert Sunlight and Topaz plants, which are also located in Southern California — do not bode well for the future of solar as a replacement for fossil fuels or nuclear power. (Ivanpah’s predilection to burn up birds has been covered on Ricochet previously so I’ll skip it).

Solar has offered the promise of nearly limitless carbon-free energy for nearly 40 years, with a few caveats. First, solar power is expensive but prices per kilowatt are falling rapidly and approaching that of traditional plants. Second, size matters, which means that solar will need to be scaled-up from boutique rooftop installations to larger plants that can produce power at a cost on par with other forms of power generation. This is all done, of course, with the advantages offered by federal loan guarantees specifically designed to prove-out the scalability of these concepts so that the private sector can take over.

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