Utah Freedom Coalition

Our Green Energy Plan

Transition to Starvation

By: Jim Jensen

Part I | Fear-driven Policy

Imagine you’ve been using a smartphone that only needs to be charged about once a year. It costs nothing to charge, and is usually ready to go in an hour. The monthly payment is within your budget and the only downside is it makes a high-pitched sound that no one can hear, but might be harmful.

Now, suppose a salesperson wants you to start using a different phone. This one costs the same as the one you’re using, but it only works about half the time. You never know when it’ll stop working, so you must keep a backup phone in your pocket or purse. You can’t let anyone else use the backup because you never know when you’ll need it. The salesperson says it’s much better because, he claims, it doesn’t emit the inaudible sound.

Would you make the trade? This is an analogy for the transition to “green” energy being forced on us at almost every level of government. We currently have an energy system that is relatively low-cost and 99.991% reliable but has some environmental costs.

We are being asked to transition to a different energy system that is not less expensive and will cost more in the future. It will be very unreliable, requiring back-up or storage, and may be worse for the environment in the long run.

Should we be making this transition? This article explores the basis for the current global energy policy and seeks to show how the promise of cleaner is darkened by the costs, and reliability issues overshadowing the green energy industry.

Energy Policy Should Be Based on Laws of Energy

Energy is the foundation of all productivity. It is a critical component of every business and service provided in our economy. Energy drives the cost of everything. Humans require energy to perform labor. Our energy is derived from food that was obtained using energy to transport it. The machines and equipment that produce our food do not operate without energy. Everything that grows gets energy from the sun.

Physicists have derived through observation of universal laws that predictably govern the way energy behaves in a system. These laws of thermodynamics state immutable facts. They are important fundamental laws of physics. It makes sense that energy policy should be based on the physical laws about how energy works.

Electricity systems are complex. This complexity is driven by the fact that a functioning electricity system can only provide usable power when electricity demand equals supply, always, every second. A huge amount of scientific effort has gone into understanding and predicting electricity demand so the supply can be adjusted to simultaneously provide for all our needs, avoid waste, and keep costs down.

Introducing unreliable, unpredictable sources of electricity such as wind and solar into the system at grid scale will lead to disastrous results, energy scarcity, and uncontrollable costs.

In 2021, according to Dr. Lars Schernikau, a Swiss energy economist and entrepreneur, “a debate started to occur regarding energy security which was driven by an increase in electricity demand, a shortage of energy raw material supply, insufficient electricity generation from wind and solar, and geopolitical challenges, which in turn resulted in high prices and volatility in major economies.”

“A reliable electricity supply,” he emphasized, “is crucial for social and economic stability and growth which in turn leads to eradication of poverty.”

Energy Policy Should Not Be Based on Fear or Social Constructs

According to the common sense of William Hayden Smith, Professor of Earth & Planetary Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis, et al., our energy policy must have three fundamental goals:

  1. Energy security. We must pursue energy policy that ensures sufficient energy to meet our needs. Our supply of energy must reliably avoid expensive, productivity-killing outages. And we must ensure that our sources are dispatchable so energy can be easily distributed when and to where it is needed.
  2. Energy costs. Our supply of energy must be stable and affordable to everyone who needs it, from heavy industry to the underprivileged person heating their flat.
  3. Environmental security. Our energy must be obtained in a way that protects and preserves the natural environment for future generations.

The need to base energy policy on supply, cost, and environmental concerns should be obvious to even the most uninformed observer.

While energy policy used to be based on scientific laws and promote our welfare, the current global energy policy is neither realistic nor sustainable. Our policies are now based on the fear of global warming and strange new social constructs like “the four tenets of energy justice.”

And if global warming isn’t scary enough, we are being told that natural events from hurricanes and the Texas cold snap to pandemics and California wildfires are increasing in frequency and intensity in the United States.  In 2021, the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change declared that “the U.S. and the globe are at a crossroads in efforts to avert the most dire fallout from the carbon emissions unleashed by fossil fuels.”

Because of the fear of global warming, we are witnessing a universal push to transition societies away from plentiful, reliable, inexpensive sources of energy toward scarce, unreliable, and more expensive sources. The transition plan is focused on one sub-goal of a sound energy policy and will lead to energy starvation and all the negative consequences associated with it.  

The entire transition is being made without considering the full cost of energy production when comparing the two systems. Without discussion, the need for the move to renewables is being assumed and the plan is focused on a “just and equitable energy transition” instead.

We are being told we must transition away from fossil fuels as quickly as possible. But there is no viable plan to replace them. Utility operators and regulators have argued “the shift is putting the entire western grid at risk of blackouts.”

Our new policies are being based on “feelings”.  We are discussing how the foods we eat contribute to our “carbon footprint” and how we need to be more vegetarian to save the climate. We now have entirely new offices in government like the Colorado Office of Just Transition and New Jersey’s Office of Clean Energy Equity to oversee compliance with the “just and equitable” school of thought.

These government hives are forcing upon our economy the globalist “environmental, social, and governance (ESG) initiatives” that are warping business decisions to curry favor with woke investors rather than doing what is in the best interest of society and their customers.

The Green Energy Utopia

We no longer have to wonder what the result of all these green initiatives will be. We have Germany and California as canaries in the coalmine, so to speak. These two sophisticated, industrial economies have been leading the way to the green energy utopia for more than a decade.

As of this writing, Germany has the highest cost of energy in developed nations. In the past decade, they have shut down nuclear, invested so much in wind and solar, and made it so difficult for oil companies to do business there that they have all but destroyed their supply of fossil fuel energy. Their population is facing a cold, dark winter without enough energy for heat.

Instead, they outsourced most of their “dirty” energy supply to Russia. One must wonder whether German leaders imagined how good they would look on the UN world stage, and how their fake audience would frown on Russia for not bowing to the global warming gods. But we doubt their virtue signaling will keep their population warm this winter.

It is now very clear that every solar panel and wind turbine must have a reliable backup energy source during cloudy or calm days. Germany is learning the hard way that their policy has been based on the wrong principles. Their Russian suppliers have cut their quota of fossil fuels. Now German citizens are facing the worst energy crisis in their history along with real fears about freezing rather than fake fears about global warming. 

California now has a statewide mandate of 100% renewable by 2045. We’re still over 20 years out from that target and the state is already on high alert. They have realized that wind and solar will not supply the state’s energy demand now that there is the extreme curtailment of fossil fuel-generated power supplying the state with energy. These kinds of policies are exerting upward pressure on energy prices at the wholesale and consumer levels.

In addition to planned and unplanned electricity brownouts, California is also facing severe and ongoing shortages in hydrogen supplies where demand is far outpacing supply. The cost of energy is increasing because their energy policies violate economic and physical laws.

Most people, including the government leaders setting our policies, have no idea how expensive the move to greener energy sources is going to be. After conducting over 70 interviews with key energy policymakers in Europe, Africa, Asia, and North America, Schernikau and friends found that the level of comprehension around energy cost is dismal.

For a brief view into what is happening in Utah start to ask about the salt domes, salt caverns and “energy storage.”

Los Angeles Times published an article explaining how they want access to a salt cavern here in Delta, Utah at Sawtooth Caverns.  This cavern would store compressed air, specifically hydrogen, for energy that would generate electricity for California.  To do this, they will have to use up even more of our water supply to separate the hydrogen from the oxygen, so that they can store and use the hydrogen.

The Department of Energy earmarked $504 million to back Utah becoming the “largest hydrogen hub in the world.”  Did you know they will need to fill some of these caverns with gasoline? These compressed hydrogen energy banks will likely need to be powered by the burning of natural gas. In fact, the companies who have invested in the Sawtooth Caverns project, including Japan, Australia and the Middle East, have also heavily invested in gas, oil, and other natural gas liquids. On top of that, Sawtooth Caverns have even started a natural gas liquid pipeline that stretches across Utah, up through Wyoming and Idaho, and down through Nevada and California.  Interesting, considering Utah is shutting down all their coal plants.     

The people that were interviewed from ministries, economic government organizations, universities, and industrial conglomerates exhibited a dire lack of understanding about the true, full cost of producing electricity between competing systems. Their principal desire – especially in developing nations – was to support an energy policy that would transition them away from fossil fuels as fast as possible. We need to be much more involved in our Grid and energy movement. 

A video we released yesterday on the Smart Grid is here

End of Part I. Stay tuned for Part II | The True Cost of Transition.

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