In our last installment entitled, “Chicken Little Goes Green” we left Johnny and family sitting in their sweltering house, waiting for the wind to blow so that windmills would generate enough electricity so that their sector of town could have power. That’s the way things work in their state ever since the government invested hundreds of millions in a new “green” energy infrastructure. After the windmills were built, celebrities, politicians, and corporate behemoth General Sparky INC, combined to lobby citizens to pay for a “smart grid”. Now General Sparky INC, employees control Johnny’s household thermostat from a central control room. In fact, General Sparky INC controls everyone’s thermostat now, all from a massive computer console in an air conditioned control room at their corporate headquarters.
The new headquarters was built with hundreds of millions of dollars in federal subsidies that General Sparky CEO, Jeffery Moneypenny, lobbied passionately for, just like he lobbied for wind subsidies. Mr. Moneypenny secretly knows that wind power is a highly ineffective means of meeting our electrical demands, that windmills are deadly to birds, and that they must be backed up by gas fired turbines, but he just couldn’t resist the profit opportunity in building thousands of them anyway.
What Johnny and his parents don’t know, as they sit on the front porch frantically fanning themselves and hoping General Sparky will soon declare that it is their turn to have some electricity, is that the environment has not been helped one bit by any of this. In fact, it has been hurt. That is not only because global warming theory was poorly formulated and even more poorly supported by actual data, but it is also because massive amounts of US coal are still being burned…in China.
While Johnny and his parents were writing letters to their congressmen demanding US coal plants be shut down, China was building coal plants at an incredible rate. In fact, China commissioned one brand new coal plant every month in the year 2011. China doesn’t have enough coal to fuel all those power plants. Therefore, since the government took away all the coal companies’ customers by shutting down US plants, those coal companies had to find another buyer. Now the coal resource that God blessed the US with is being taken from under US soil and shipped rapidly to China. That way, instead of Johnny and his parents getting the economic benefits of cheap reliable electricity, China is reaping those benefits.
It is not just that Johnny’s parents now pay five times more for electricity that is less available and reliable, but so does their local Mega Mart. Mega Mart has freezers for groceries and massive air conditioning units to cool the store. So Mega Mart’s power bill before the windmills and smartgrid was $30,000 a month. Now that same store pays $150,000 per month. Those costs show up on Johnny’s mom’s grocery bill. So Johnny’s family pays more for groceries, food, gas (electric pumps that move the gas into his car), etc. Now Johnny see’s that energy costs have a tremendous ripple effect on his life. Sadly, it is too late now. The coal plants are gone and the windmills and smart grid are here to stay.
Meanwhile, China is burning US coal in brand new power plants that are making zillions of cheap, reliable megawatts. Unfortunately, their power plants aren’t up to the standards of even the older US plants. The new Chinese plants don’t have precipitators, scrubbers, and bag houses to clean up their smoke stacks. Instead, dark, black, smoke billows pollutants that are much worse than CO2 into the atmosphere. As Johnny sweats on his front porch and hopes his ice cream doesn’t melt in his idle freezer, a boy his age in China is hoping his local store gets a new shipment of respirator dust masks soon. You see, everyone in China wears a respirator when they go outside and there is now a shortage of those precious masks….The End.
This has been a fable for illustration purposes. Unfortunately, it is not fiction. These are the types of multi-billion dollar policy decisions that are being made in the name of global warming/climate change. These decisions will affect you much more than almost any other political issue. Get involved. Don’t accept global warming propaganda at face value, even if it comes from a supposedly unbiased climatologist. Then, write your congressman, because armies of little Johnny’s just like the one in our story are doing that very thing right now.
Chris Skates has 23 years’ experience in power plant chemistry and environmental issues. He is the author of the novel Going Green: For Some It Has Nothing to Do With the Environment and an Adjunct Scholar of The Cornwall Alliance. You can follow him on Twitter or follow his blog at www.chrisskates.com