By Donald Jeffries
All reasonable people want a clean environment. Nobody supports littering, or air and water pollution. But what was once “environmentalism” and “ecology” has changed from concern for the actual environment into heavy-handed policies and lecturing about the importance and danger of “climate change.”
Not only is the rhetoric destructive of individual civil liberties, with its constant call for lowered standards of living, the “climate change” agenda doesn’t seem to work very well in a practical sense. Wind turbines, hyped as a “clean” energy alternative to the dreaded fossil fuels, have been breaking down and falling over, for example. One turbine tower in Oklahoma City recently fell into literal pieces, only a year after first being put into operation. It was constructed by corporate giant General Electric Company.
“It fell pretty much right on top of itself,” an eyewitness reported.
Another GE turbine collapsed in Colorado a few days later. The collapses are only a part of widespread malfunction of turbines occurring all over the country.
“We’re seeing these failures happening in a shorter time frame on the newer turbines, and that’s quite concerning,” observed Fraser McLachlan, chief executive officer of the London-based GCube Underwriting Ltd., insurer of some $3.5 billion in wind assets in 38 countries. He predicted that if the failures continued, insurance premiums would increase.
General Electric’s CEO Larry Culp predictably downplayed concerns, saying, “Rapid innovation strains manufacturing and the broader supply chain. It takes time to stabilize production and quality on these new products.”
It is undeniable that an increasing percentage of the machines are unable to produce power. Turbines have collapsed in other parts of the world as well, such as in Germany and Lithuania. Although there is enormous cultural pressure to invest in “green” energy, bankers and other creditors are becoming skeptical.
“There’s a hesitancy among insurers and lenders about these big models that haven’t been tested yet,” Oliver Metcalfe, head of wind research at BloombergNEF stated. “The technology alarm bells are ringing.”
The wind turbines came under new scrutiny during Texas’s unprecedented power outage in the winter of 2021. The wind turbines froze, failing to kick in the extra power needed. Of course, the mainstream media fell all over themselves “fact checking” the situation and claiming that it was “misinformation” that wind farms had been a primary cause of the power failure.
Tucker Carlson of Fox News was a high-profile critic, alleging, “The windmills failed like the silly fashion accessories they are, and people in Texas died.”
As Jason Hayes wrote in an opinion piece for USA Today:
The immediate cause for the power outages in Texas this week was extreme cold and insufficient winterization of the state’s energy systems. But there’s still no escaping the fact that, for years, Texas regulators have favored the construction of heavily subsidized renewable energy sources over more reliable electricity generation. These policies have pushed the state away from nuclear and coal and now millions in Texas and the Great Plains states are learning just how badly exposed they are when extreme weather hits. …
The state has spent tens of billions of dollars on wind turbines that don’t work when millions of people desperately need electricity. As the cold weather has gotten worse, half the state’s wind generation has sat frozen and immobile. Where wind provided 42% of the state’s electricity on Feb. 7, it fell to 8% on Feb. 11.
The push to move from gas powered vehicles to electric cars is getting stronger every year. This is despite widespread concerns about the batteries in these electric vehicles catching on fire. The Norwegian shipping company Havila recently banned electric vehicles from their ferries, following a ferry sinking last year from a fire caused by electric car batteries. Thousands of electric cars and other vehicles were lost as a result, worth a net value of $400 million.
During Florida’s 2022 Hurricane Ian, there were numerous reports of electric vehicles catching on fire. Jimmy Patronis, Florida’s chief financial officer and state fire marshal, tweeted, “There’s a ton of EVs disabled from Ian. As those batteries corrode, fires start. That’s a new challenge that our firefighters haven’t faced before. At least on this kind of scale.”
During a heat wave last summer in California, the nation’s “greenest” state notably called on electric vehicle owners not to charge their batteries at peak times.
The consistently wrong predictions of “climate change” activists, combined with a shocking hypocrisy (celebrities traveling on their private jets to lecture the common masses about their carbon footprints, for example), make it difficult to take anything they say seriously.
We do need alternative forms of energy. Nikola Tesla is said to have developed a form of free energy for all nearly a century ago. But the “green” agenda is not about helping people. It’s about “sacrifice” and lowered expectations.