Letter: Kicking and screaming into new energy future

Kicking and screaming into energy future

To the editor:

This is in response to John Carroll's letter dated Jan. 3 about energy solutions.

Mr. Carroll writes: "The polemics of climate change and its activism have had some influence on energy policy and will be met with increasing resistance from not only energy producers but also the majority of the public."

More and more energy producers have read the tea leaves and they want in on the renewable future (see below). Seventy percent of Americans are either alarmed or concerned about the effects of climate change, while only 7 percent are "dismissive" of it. (One of the problems is that the 7 percent are the most vocal about it.)

"Climate change is real but long-term solutions will not come from professors with websites that organize localized groups and memberships. They reject economic growth and see free market capitalism as incompatible with response to climate change."

Oh my, another person rankled by the well educated. When did Americans start hating people with advanced degrees? (At this, my dog would stick his nose into the air and smell resentment.)

In terms of the market economy, the market screams for innovation and competitiveness in this new area of research and development, and it's happening — overseas. Investing in clean renewables will create not only millions of new jobs but entirely new industries, including new exports: nothing short of an American Renaissance.

Yes, it will displace the fossil fuel industry and those such as Mr. Carroll whom it supported, just as the automobile displaced those whose livelihoods depended upon the horse-and-buggy. That is inevitable.

"De minimis amounts of energy from subsidized renewables cannot replace 20 million BOE used per day in America."

According to the National Energy Laboratory Technical Report No. NREL/TP-840-40665: in the United States, within two miles of the Earth's surface (a depth that fracking now reaches), the geothermal energy is approximately three million quads, or enough energy to provide for America's needs for the next 30,000 years. That's not a typo. Thirty thousand years. (One quad of energy is equivalent to 10 quadrillion BTUs, or 1 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.) It has been shown, time and time again, that we have — today — the technological sophistication to produce all of our energy needs using only renewables.

Last year, for example, Denmark produced 42 percent of its electricity from wind power alone, this according to Denmark's utility company, Energinet. If you didn't catch that Mr. Carroll, the report was issued by a utility company, not a professor's website.

"Rational solutions must come from people who do not like to be preached to "

No, rational solutions come from rational scientists, researchers, engineers and designers, legislators and concerned, well-informed, level-headed citizens who share a passion for social and environmental justice world around. The rest of you will be led, kicking and screaming, into the 21st century.

Jeffrey Reel, Sheffield


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