Not buying it: While China may be increasing wind turbine and solar panel manufacturing to grow its economy, some people feel that it isn't as interested in applying the more expensive technology at home.
"It is impossible to tell why they are investing anything at all in [wind farms and solar power plants], which are not competitive with coal," said Myron Ebell, an energy analystknow-nothing lying lumpsucker at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a conservative research and advocacy group. "My guess is that it's window dressing for the West."
Ebell said China is excelling at making renewable energy parts for the same reason they are excelling at making all sorts of other things: low cost, high skilled labor; weak environmental laws; and cheap energy.
The Chinese, Ebell believes, are simply using the West's fascination with wind and solar as a chance to sell it products.
Reporter Steve Hargreaves for CNN blathered:
Indeed, while China has surpassed the United States when it comes to making the equipment, it has not yet caught it in terms of renewable energy production.
In 2009 China could produce 25 gigawatts of wind power and under 1 gigawatt of solar, according to Ernst & Young. The United States could produce 35 gigawatts of wind and 2 gigawatts of solar.
This is exactly the sort of sloppy mis-reporting we can expect from a reporter who has Myron Ebell in his phone book who knows perfectly well the costs of coal in terms of mining deaths in China and the fact that their crappy coal is (a) a limited resource, and (b) not distributed everywhere in the country where you need it for electricity.
Why bother trucking this stuff thousands of miles when you can get the electricity you need from the sky? That's why.
This is the future -- unless Myron Ebell is successful at killing it first.
Myron Ebell continues to speak out against jobs, new techonologies and anything that infringes his corporate sponsors' right to pollute and degrade the environment in perpetuity.
As usual, he gets a free fact-free airing on politico:
California's economic future depends on passing Proposition 23 and suspending AB 32. California's Democratic-controlled legislature and Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger have worked mightily the past few years to turn their state into an economic basket case...
California was the main economic engine pulling America forward for most of the past sixty-some years. That engine has been destroyed by its elected leaders through a wide array of economically disastrous policies. California once had a highly diversified economy that included considerable energy-intensive manufacturing. For example, California once had major auto assembly and airplane manufacturing plants. They are now gone...
The fact that the sate of California is now broke may force its government to reverse many disastrous policies. That will help to revive economic activity, but it is unlikely that sizable investments will be made in new businesses until the threat of the drastic energy-rationing measures required by AB 32 disappears.
Spending by oil companies in favour of this hope and green jobs killing Proposition 23 is in the tens of millions. The names include Adam Smith Foundation, Occidental Petroleum, National Petrochemical and Refiners Association, Tower Energy Group, World Oil Corp, Southern Counties Oil, California Trucking Association, Murray Energy, Berry Petrochemical, Boyett Petroleum.
In the upside-down world of right-wing politics, the words of the proposition say that any green jobs program must be suspended until California's unemployment rate is below 5.5%. It's currently 12%. And jobs programs are needed -- unless you are part of the super-rich elite who don't care if the rest of the planet burns.
[T]hree separate motions were filed in the federal D. C. Circuit Court of Appeals asking the court to delay implementation of EPA’s greenhouse gas regulations until the court rules on the lawsuit seeking to overturn the Endangerment Finding upon which the regulations are based.
One motion was filed by the State of Texas; another was filed by several non-profit policy and legal groups; and the third was filed by three industry trade associations.
That second link leads to a legal case made by Myron's employer, the CEI, plus the Ohio Coal Association and the "Coalition for Responsible Regulation". I wonder why he wasn't proud to mention that.
Oh, and also the third one is also by the Coalition for Responsible Regulation. No one knows who the hell they are. And Myron Ebell is certainly not going to tell you because that would give the game away -- You know the one where he is constantly trying to pass off regressively lethal special interests as real public interest concerns by lying, lying, lying and lying.
Politico's fact-free zone decorated its lively debate Is climate science a settled matter? with comments from Junkman Steve Milloy as well as Myron Ebell pontificating about how all the winning Republican candidates are boneheads -- I beg your pardon -- don't believe in global warming.
And cap-and-trade, as far as applying a market-based solution to the problem, has as much future as we have. A very bad one.
You see, oil company execs can never have enough private jets, so it's wrong to tax their profits and spend it on something productive.
This appears part of a broader plan by President Obama to force domestic petroleum production down. Other elements include the six-month moratorium on offshore leases in the Gulf, cancelling planned oil and gas leases federal lands in the West, and opposing new production on Alaska’s North Slope and offshore in the Arctic Ocean. Less energy and more expensive energy is extremely bad news for the American economy.
The president’s proposals to spend more taxpayer dollars on transportation infrastructure are a mixed bag. One of the bigger chunks is to go to high-speed rail projects. These are mostly colossally expensive boondoggles.
He then gleefully referred to a washington times article about how Obama's attempts to invest in future energy technologies has flopped with a lot of the money going abroad to buy the equipment that isn't manufactured in America.
It's all very depressing. Myron Ebell wants the president to fail, technology to fail, America to fail, and the human race to fail. And he loves it, like those mythical oil eating bacteria in the gulf of mexico that just love environmental devastation.
Blogger Paul Mulshine on NJ.com is the latest on-line correspondent to take comments from "expert" Myron Ebell and post them up without checking if they make any sense. Take a look at this one:
But then there’s the example of that windmill in Oregon that collapsed in 25-mph winds back in 2007 and killed a guy who was working on it. That means wind power has already killed more Americans than have been killed by nuclear power in all our history.
Is Myron Ebell suggesting that there has not been one accidental death during the construction or maintenance of any nuclear power plant in the US ever?
And this guy was dumb enough to print it, as opposed to saying to Ebell:
"Actually that statement about there never being a construction death in the nuclear power industry doesn't sound credible, even if you don't know anything like we do. Can you make up some other false statement instead that sounds a little more plausible? That's what you're paid for, isn't it?"
Generally we know that Myron Ebell is against all new technology, unless it's the kind that enables more fossil fuels to be burned, even though he says it would be less. So Myron's has to scare-monger as much as he can about these turbines and use what little material he has to draw on.
Ebell, who comes from Oregon, told me of what happened when a wind farm was constructed not far from where he grew up. "Within two months, one broke apart in high wind and a blade was found more than a mile away," Ebell said. "Can you imagine sitting on your front porch and seeing one of those coming at you?"
When did this happen? 1973? Could it have physically flown as far as anyone's front porch? Probably not. But, please, just imagine it did, so I can make you scared of these things.
What you are not supposed to be scared of, according to Myron Ebell, is anything to do with lovely clean and tasty fossil fuels.
(1) In the future technology and innovation will improve our lives and reduce our carbon footprint; (2) All new energy technologies must be resisted
Marvel at how easily he changes the subject once the other guy points out that every new technological industries in America has come about as a result of massive government investment, while the dumb blonde busily proclaims that that was all in the past.
Myron Ebell: Well, certainly the federal government can create jobs by throwing taxpayer dollars into creating jobs, but it doesn't show what the total economic effect is, and in this case I think what you're going to see is a net loss of jobs because what the government is subsidizing is forms of energy that are going to raise our energy prices, higher electric rates, gasoline prices. And if we have less money in our pocketbooks because we've got higher utility bills we're going to be spending less money on other things. That measn fewer people are going to have jobs in things like restaurants, travel, all the things that we spend our money on.
Reid Detchon: If you think about how we are going to succeed in this country economically we got to make something. And we know that clean energy jobs are the future. You look at where the price of oil is going over the next ten twenty years. We've got to be prepared with alternatives, invest in electric vehicles and renewable energy like solar and wind.
Gerri Willis: I'm shocked that the government puts money into these companies when it looks like they're big time losers to me. Is the government typically very good at picking winners in any industry?
Ebell: No, and these subsidies go back to the 1970s and we have one failed generation of companies after another that collect these tax dollars. This is seldom a good investment.
Detchon: You know, from the beginning of American history the government has been deeply involved and working with the private sector whether you're talking about railroads, aerospace, telecom, the internet. Every major industry that this country has ever developed has been in partnership with the government.
Dumb blonde: That was a long darn time ago.
Detchon: We would not have the aerospace industry if it weren't for the government. We would not have the telecom industry if it weren't for the government. When you're starting a new industry with new technology you have to have some help, otherwise we'll just be buying all these products from China.
Blonde: Do you buy that Myron?
Ebell: No. Look, China is building one to two new coal fired power plants a week. They're building ten or twelve new nuclear plants a year. They've got this kind of window dressing of oh yes we're building solar panels, but the fact is the reason China is becoming the manufacturing hub of the world is not just that they have low labour costs, it's also that they have lower energy prices than we do. We're installing a lot of solar panels and windmills to raise our electric prices, and in fact these solar panels are being built in countries that rely on coal-fired power because it's so much cheaper. [Dumb blone laughs] So we're going to have all these green energy and we're going to be too poor to build anything because we won't be able to compete with the countries that have have cheap energy.
Blonde: Reid, what do you make of that? It seems like it bites you in the butt. Not only do the companies fail, but they're raising prices on the people who need to have low prices.
Detchon: I wouldn't want to have Myron on my investment team. You know you have to invest in new technologies and bring down the costs so they're going to be competitive with the conventional fuels. Otherwise you're just condemning yourself to the status quo. I think that the point of investing now, as has been shown in Germany and Japan is you bring down these costs very dramatically over time. You create jobs, three hundred thousand new jobs in Germany because of their solar investments, and you're creating an industry that is going to sustain this country's manufacturing base.
Blonde: I think that's debatable.
Ebell: I think Reid is way behind here on the news. Spain has had to drastically cut its solar and wind subsidies because they can't afford them. Germany is talking about the same thing. So is Britain. China is relying on the old technology coal fired power because it's cheaper. The future is not in higher prices. It's not pricing people out of jobs and pricing consumers out of products. It's trying to put them into jobs and make them able to buy products.
A several person one-sided debate on NewsMax between Myron Ebell and other know-nothings from places like the Heritage Foundation produced the following lessons from the Gulf oil spill:
"Global warming is one prediction of doom after another," Myron Ebell, director of energy and global warming policy for the Competitive Enterprise Institute, tells Newsmax. "You know, we're all going to get malaria, or there will be hurricanes and tornadoes everywhere, or sea levels will rise drastically in a short period of time. It's just one claim of doom right around the corner after another."
No, Myron, it's about your great-grandchildren. It'll happen to them, but you don't care, do you? You think you'll be swept up to heaven with The Rapture before any of the consequences, don't you? That's because you don't believe in justice. There is no justice. Not from God. Not from nature. Only from society. And by the fact that you are still a free man shows there is very little of that yet to happen.
Ebell sees another parallel between the BP spill and global warming: The high costs associated with the government's response.
"The economic damage of the response is so much larger than the economic damage of the disaster," Ebell tells Newsmax. "It's many, many times the size, potentially. ... You certainly see this in global warming, where the medicine is so much worse than the disease.
Say what? Which part of the response caused more damage than the oil leak? Was it the government response of making BP pay to clean it up and the effect on its share price?
Attempting to copy the success of the Tax Freedom Day when the nation as a whole has theoretically earned enough income to fund its annual tax burden -- thus promulgating the lie that we are all taxed evenly, and that public taxation is a bad thing as we drive around on publicly funded roads and enjoy books whose ability we can read as a result of publicly funded education -- someone has come up with Earth overshoot day, the day when humans have consumed all of the biological resources that Earth can provide annually and begins burning through a finite and depleting capital.
Reporter Mike Lee of the San Diego Union Tribune decided to include a ridiculous quote from Myron Ebell in his article on this:
"It is, of course, complete poppycock," said Myron Ebell at the libertarian Competitive Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C. "As we become wealthier and more technologically sophisticated, our environmental footprint becomes smaller."
I mean, What the hell gives? The graphic on that article clearly shows wealthy and "technologically sophisticated" Americans consuming 5 planets of resources pro-rata, while poor and lower technology India rates 0.4.
What is the point of being a reporter if all you do is phone up Myron Ebell and print any old crap he spouts sight unseen? Hasn't anyone got a brain around here?
Myron Ebell is an
whose sole objective is to sabotage public and political understanding
of climate change by lying about the soundness of the science and
promoting the work of seriously flawed reports and researchers.
this BBC interview with Ebell in 2004 (begins 3:55) for the best introduction to his style.
No news reporter should ever interview him.
If you want to hear an honest view from the other side of the debate
you can contact
directly for a statement, rather than encourage them to pay men like
Myron Ebell to conduct unaccountable smear campaigns on their behalf.