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Climate Policy
106 Articles

Why Renewable Energy Cannot Replace Fossil Fuels by 2050

Energy Economist Robert Lyman does a reality check on the 100% Wind, Water and Sunlight (WWS) by 2050 vision advocated by some politicians and NGOs. He finds that the capital costs of renewable energy plants are almost 30 times as high as those of the natural gas plants. Taking into account operating costs, onshore wind plants are 4.6 times as expensive as gas plants and large-scale PV plants are 14.1 times as expensive as gas plants. The solar PV plants envisioned for the U.S. in the WWS vision would cover almost 20% of the lower 48 states. Canada would have to dedicate our entire national economic output for 6 to 10 years to building wind farms to meet the WWS vision. The cost to install solar PV plants in the USA would be $16 Trillion, not including electrical invertors. The cost of electrifying the passenger and freight rail systems in North America would almost certainly run into trillions of dollars. The WWS vision is not feasible in economic, technological or political terms.

Alberta’s Climate Plan: A Burden with No Benefit (Technical)

Energy balance analysis using the IPCC forcing estimates with updated aerosol forcing and accounting for millennium scale natural warming and urban heat effects results in a transient climate response (when CO2 concentrations double) of about 0.85 °C in about 125 years. The social cost of carbon best estimate on a global basis is -5 US$/tonne of CO2 and is extremely likely less than -1.3 US$/tonne of CO2. In Canada, benefits increase throughout the 21st century even with high climate sensitivity to greenhouse gases. Anthropogenic CO2 emissions are very beneficial. Alberta's carbon tax of $30/tonneCO2 as of January 1, 2018 is not based on the most recent and best quality climate science and economic evaluations. A carbon tax will harm all Albertans for no benefit.

On Earth Day We Should Celebrate The True Green Fuels – Hydrocarbons and Nuclear

People are urged to celebrate the true green fuels – oil, coal, gas and nuclear. The Chairman of “Carbon Sense”, Mr Viv Forbes, said that these fuels have reduced man’s pressure on the environment to such an extent that they should be celebrated on “Earth Day”. Without carbon and nuclear fuels, Earth would be raped for fuel and food by destitute people trying to eke out a living without the greatest boon to modern living – cheap reliable energy. In contrast, the so called “green energy” sources usually lauded on Earth Day have a heavy toll on the environment to produce piddling amounts of unreliable and costly energy.

Alberta’s Climate Plan: A burden with no benefit - Presentation

Ken Gregory gave a presentation in Calgary on July 25, 2016. Here is the presentation slides. Abstract: The Alberta Government intends to impose a carbon tax of C$20/tCO2 on of January 1, 2017, and C$30/tCO2 on January 1, 2018. This action is not based on the most recent and best quality climate science and economic evaluations. The expected warming from 2016 to 2100 due to greenhouse gas emissions is only 0.6 °C using the best climate science The net social benefit of emissions is about 17 US$/tCO2. The small warming from emissions and CO2 fertilization are net beneficial. A carbon tax will harm all Albertans for no benefit. The climate plan is forecast to reduce global temperatures by 0.00007 °C by 2030. The presentation will explain why Alberta's climate panel got the social cost of carbon emissions so very wrong. Canada's benefits from emissions continue to increase throughout the 21st century.

The Carbon-Tax Shell Game

Oren Cass of the Manhattan Institute says a carbon tax "makes little sense when scrutinized closely." He writes, "The insubstantial effect on emissions gets obscured by discussions of the fiscal benefits. The negative fiscal effects get offset by claims of environmental efficacy. The tax's simplicity and practicality are touted, even as new complexity is introduced to address each flaw. ... a carbon tax is not good policy." The US share of global CO2 emissions shrinks every year as the developing world increases their emissions. Eliminating US CO2 emissions would have very little effect on global temperatures. Carbon tax has negligible effect on encouraging low-carbon energy innovation.

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