Trump is correct on Paris climate accord
Recent local news reports of the U.S. exiting the Paris climate accord feature some of our political leaders parroting familiar anti-Trump themes but without revealing the accord's shortcomings.
In the June 6, 2017 Cape Gazette, Gov. Carney warned: "greenhouse gases that fuel rapid climate change" will mean "future generations facing this ever-encroaching threat" that he characterized in December 2015 as "sea-levels in Delaware that could rise as much as 36 inches by 2060."
Sen. Carper demonized President Trump's withdrawal as having the U.S. joining the "likes of Bashar al-Assad" who didn't join the Paris accord. Fellow Senator Chris Coons declared that withdrawing from Paris accords puts the U.S. government "at odds with US businesses, our closest allies and millions of Americans."
And, new Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester, not to be outdone, warned that, "the President has chosen to take us backwards" and "puts Delawareans and Americans alike in serious danger."
But, trumping them all (sorry) is Jill Fuchs of the League of Women Voters of Delaware. She apocalyptically foretold in the Cape Gazette on June 20, 2017 that, "A degree or two (of increasing temperatures) can raise global sea levels by 20 meters (65 feet) - the state's average elevation."
That's a 500 percent increase over State Climatologist Dan Weathers' opinion (Cape Gazette Sept. 2, 2016) that the seas "over the next century...will likely rise 13 inches" with the occurring land that's sinking a contributing cause.
Besides making me wonder who to believe, it makes me question why former Vice President Joe Biden, surely aware of these "serious dangers," would take such a risk in his recent purchase of a beach house near the ocean in Rehoboth - not to mention expanding his carbon footprint?
In counterpoint to our state leaders' critiques is author, journalist Robert Bryce's reporting that, "climate scientists at MIT projected that even if signatories to the deal met their pledges, it would result in a reduction in global temperatures of only two-tenths of one degree (0.2) celsius by 2100."
So, what happened to the promise of renewables now being promoted as a 100 percent green solution for our energy needs?
None other than climate scientist James Hansen, advisor to former vice president Al Gore, says that "Suggesting that renewables will let us phase rapidly off fossil fuels in the U.S., China, India or the world as a whole is almost the equivalent of believing in the Easter Bunny and Tooth Fairy."
Bjorn Lomborg, president of the Copenhagen Consensus Center, adds that the associated subsidies for those renewables (solar and wind) "will cost $125 billion this year and $3 trillion over the next 25 years to meet less than 3 percent of the world's energy needs.''
Notably, one of the reasons why wind and solar struggle meeting demand is the increasing massive scale of electricity needed by Americans and the world. Consider these two examples:
In his 2008 book, "Gusher of Lies," Mr. Bryce said that "the massive data centers operated by companies like Google,Yahoo, and Microsoft, etc. are the Information Age equivalents of aluminum smelters or steel plants - massive industrial facilities with huge appetites for electricity. But instead of turning out metal, they churn out torrents of data. In 2001 Google had about 8,000 computer servers...By mid-2006, the company had more than 450,000." Now, estimates run in the millions.
Then there's the smartphone explosion. The iPhone was introduced 10 years ago this June and according to the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association, an industry trade group, about 80 percent (260 million) of Americans own a smartphone with many having multiple devices that need recharging regularly...not to mention the growing fleet of electric vehicles.
Are we to believe that windmills, solar and other renewables can keep up with this added volume? Remember, solar panels sleep at night and as Mr. Bryce points out, "wind turbines produce power one-third of the time."
So, if politicians want to end coal and go with renewables, why aren't they talking about green nuclear power? William Boisvert, Breakthrough Institute - an environmental policy think tank, remarked that, "nuclear has a land footprint 530 times smaller than wind and 145 times smaller than solar. It's green because it spares nature and cuts out CO2 emissions."
Lastly, if Senators Carper and Coons along with former President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden thought that the Paris accord was so vital, why didn't they push for a permanent treaty vote in the Senate when they had control?
Trump was right to save us from an expensive and symbolic-only climate deal.
Geary Foertsch lives in Rehoboth and writes from a libertarian perspective to promote economic liberty, non-cronyism free markets, small government and a non-intervention foreign policy. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.