Americas Unnecessary Energy Crisis
By: Guest Authors
By: Robert Badaracco
Itâ€™s my belief that if it was not for mistaken left wing politics the US could be a comparative utopia compared to what it has become. In this article I would like to restrict myself to the energy aspects of the problems created by the left. Itâ€™s not that conservatives have exactly been doing what was necessary to solve our energy problems either, but I see the real blame coming from mistaken left wing thinking. Letâ€™s go back to say 1970 and examine what we should have done differently starting then.
First, we should have invested in and built a nuclear grid capable of supplying power for residential and commercial purposes, and capable of powering an electric transportation grid. Had we done this we could have become completely independent of foreign oil by the year 2,000. We would be using clean, efficient, and abundant nuclear energy. Almost zero CO2, no global warming, no air pollution, and all the energy we needed.
AP1000 nuclear plant produced by Westinghouse and planned for use in China.
Currently, generation IV nuclear power plants are being designed. We should have invested more and sooner in these new technologies. This new generation of power plants improves disposal issues by reusing fuel. This also solves the fuel supply issue. The Chinese have already contracted with Westinghouse to build at least 4 AP1000 nuclear plants, and they are now ahead of us in implementing this vital technology. The plants offer several advantages over previous generations of nuclear power including that they are â€˜non proliferationâ€™ and do not require refueling for 30 years. The plants include â€˜passive safetyâ€™ which means they shut down without human intervention if necessary, (which is supposed to be exceedingly unlikely). The plant design is much smaller and simple compared to previous generations.
Second, we should be using alternative modes of transportation. I see a world where transportation occurs without dependence on oil. I envision using electric: motorcycles, cars, trucks and trains, and supplementing this with ultralight aircraft and even larger aircraft such as the Aeroscraft. Itâ€™s a complete solution that could be implemented with technology available since before 1970.
My thesis of why we have not yet made these changes is that the left corruptly avoids actual solutions to problems that form core components of their political agenda. This is a key idea. Itâ€™s sort of like oil companies that supposedly block the production of electric cars. The left doesnâ€™t want a solution because they want to mandate regulations. They want to be in charge of businesses and enforce an eco-lifestyle. They want endless cadres of bureaucrats deciding on how energy is to be used, and they want to be able to blame â€˜wasteful businessesâ€™ and â€˜big oilâ€™. Controlling energy is an important component of the left wing agenda. Nuclear power solves the problem which means it puts the left out of power. How can they mandate a lifestyle and complain about business when the problems are solved? The â€˜green peopleâ€™ donâ€™t really want endless free inexpensive clean energy. That would end their lifestyle. (Sorry greenies I agree with you on some issues but itâ€™s true.)
I have long noticed the hypocrisy of the left as they drive their SUVâ€™s to work and then do some relatively insignificant thing like recycling a water bottle. They send their chosen elites off in airplanes to go to conferences on global warming. Whatever they do they donâ€™t really solve the problems their so concerned about. They could drive gas powered motorcycles using little fuel that have been available since the beginning of the last century, and they donâ€™t even appear to know about electric motorcycles, but if they did they wouldnâ€™t endorse them because its not a form of centralized mass transportation.
My own view is that all the regulations and alternative energy strategies of the left are not really effective at solving any of our energy problems. But I really donâ€™t think itâ€™s a solution to energy problems that they are after. Again itâ€™s more like a political lifestyle. Nuclear energy offers all the things they supposedly believe in no CO2, no oil, and inexpensive abundant energy produced by mother nature. But instead of favoring it the left and the greenies are busy claiming that nuclear energy is not a renewable energy source. They create their mother-nature concept â€˜renewable energyâ€™. Does it have a definition? Is it something that works in a cycle? Breeder reactors can create their own fuel. For me thatâ€™s good enough, and itâ€™s better than covering half the planet with corn fields.
Making ethanol devastates the natural environment, ecosystems are cleared and fertilizers that release radioactive materials are used. Ah but its the left itâ€™s ok.
Critics of nuclear energy point out disposal issues. They make uneducated or manipulative statements like â€œdo you want to store nuclear waste in your backyard?â€ The fact is a given families share of the nuclear waste would be immeasurably insignificant and wouldnâ€™t compare, for example, to their share of exposure to pollution from a coal plant. New generation IV plants and disposal methods go a long ways towards solving these waste issues.
NORM stands for naturally occurring radioactive materials, for example, radon exposure in homes built in granite ground. The fact is that NORM accounts for 10,000 times more exposure than nuclear power plants do. (Personally I think itâ€™s more but I didnâ€™t do the math.) In fact coal production also leads to the release of radioactive materials. So does the making and using of fertilizers. The fertilizers used in corn fields used to produce ethanol create radioactive waste. I would guess many more magnitudes worse per Joule of useable energy produced as compared to nuclear energy production. So why does the left prefer ethanol and not nuclear? Because its part of their larger energy solution: Endless hordes of bureaucrats trying to mandate a lifestyle and getting paid to do it.
I would like to point out this is not necessarily an attack on alternative energy as it is on the refusal of the left to endorse an obvious solution: nuclear energy. In addition as explained I favor a variety of energy saving ideas everything from electric motos to LED lighting. Combining these ideas there is no reason we should be using any foreign oil.
Trying to shed some light on energy issues: LEDHomePlace