The Problem with Renewable Energy....

Sullivan

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Nov 24, 2001
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is that it keeps growing?! wait.....what......


The United States electricity sector reached an important milestone in April, when wind and solar energy accounted for 20% of electricity generation for the first time in history, according to the London-based global energy think tank Ember.

For 2021 as a whole, wind and solar created 14% of U.S. electricity, up from just 6% in 2015.

Still, renewables are growing and will continue to do so; the only question is by how much. On March 29, wind was the second-largest source of electricity in the U.S. in a 24-hour period for the first time. And on April 3, California set a record when its power grid briefly ran on 97% renewable energy.

Yahoo isn't the most accurate and informative website for energy information. You might want to check with the EIA in the future.
 
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JeffClear

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Oct 15, 2017
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No, not really Jeff.
Yes really.
"

As of 2020, according to a report published by Energy Innovation Policy and Technology, 80% of existing U.S. coal plants are more expensive to keep in operation than replacing them with new wind and solar projects. In Nebraska, the same study showed this to be true for five of the state’s seven active plants, with four of these plants operating at a cost 29% or more higher than new wind.
There are a few key factors that play into this shift:
  • Renewable energy is gaining momentum—and getting a lot less expensive. Wind and solar technologies have greatly improved in the past decade, resulting in increased effectiveness, which is appealing to energy investors and communities alike. As demand has increased, so too has supply, driving down the cost of the parts and hardware required to get wind turbines and solar panels built and operational. Research conducted by Our World in Data found that in 10 years, the price of solar electricity has dropped 89%, and the price of onshore wind has dropped 70%.
  • Outdated coal plants are expensive to maintain. The inefficiencies of aging coal plants cause a significant financial strain to the business. The older they become, the more costs tied to operations and maintenance grow. To maintain current operations, many are forced to raise their energy prices or close entirely. According to Energy Innovation Policy and Technology’s Coal Cost Crossover 2.0 report, 158 U.S. plants have been retired since 2012.
  • Many coal plants are in debt. Many of the coal plants that aren’t shutting their doors are facing another obstacle—debt carried by the local co-ops that run them. As a result, dollars that could be spent making these plants more efficient or installing emission-control equipment are used to pay off long-standing bills. "

 

Sullivan

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Nov 24, 2001
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Yes really.
"

As of 2020, according to a report published by Energy Innovation Policy and Technology, 80% of existing U.S. coal plants are more expensive to keep in operation than replacing them with new wind and solar projects. In Nebraska, the same study showed this to be true for five of the state’s seven active plants, with four of these plants operating at a cost 29% or more higher than new wind.
There are a few key factors that play into this shift:
  • Renewable energy is gaining momentum—and getting a lot less expensive. Wind and solar technologies have greatly improved in the past decade, resulting in increased effectiveness, which is appealing to energy investors and communities alike. As demand has increased, so too has supply, driving down the cost of the parts and hardware required to get wind turbines and solar panels built and operational. Research conducted by Our World in Data found that in 10 years, the price of solar electricity has dropped 89%, and the price of onshore wind has dropped 70%.
  • Outdated coal plants are expensive to maintain. The inefficiencies of aging coal plants cause a significant financial strain to the business. The older they become, the more costs tied to operations and maintenance grow. To maintain current operations, many are forced to raise their energy prices or close entirely. According to Energy Innovation Policy and Technology’s Coal Cost Crossover 2.0 report, 158 U.S. plants have been retired since 2012.
  • Many coal plants are in debt. Many of the coal plants that aren’t shutting their doors are facing another obstacle—debt carried by the local co-ops that run them. As a result, dollars that could be spent making these plants more efficient or installing emission-control equipment are used to pay off long-standing bills. "


That was as of 2020. Coal prices are much higher, which throws most all of those figures off.
 

Sullivan

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  • Renewable energy is gaining momentum—and getting a lot less expensive. Wind and solar technologies have greatly improved in the past decade, resulting in increased effectiveness, which is appealing to energy investors and communities alike. As demand has increased, so too has supply, driving down the cost of the parts and hardware required to get wind turbines and solar panels built and operational. Research conducted by Our World in Data found that in 10 years, the price of solar electricity has dropped 89%, and the price of onshore wind has dropped 70%.


Those are funny stats. It's all relative. That's like claiming the inflation rate is only 8.3%.
 

pawrestlersintn

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Jan 26, 2013
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Yes really.
"

As of 2020, according to a report published by Energy Innovation Policy and Technology, 80% of existing U.S. coal plants are more expensive to keep in operation than replacing them with new wind and solar projects. In Nebraska, the same study showed this to be true for five of the state’s seven active plants, with four of these plants operating at a cost 29% or more higher than new wind.
There are a few key factors that play into this shift:
  • Renewable energy is gaining momentum—and getting a lot less expensive. Wind and solar technologies have greatly improved in the past decade, resulting in increased effectiveness, which is appealing to energy investors and communities alike. As demand has increased, so too has supply, driving down the cost of the parts and hardware required to get wind turbines and solar panels built and operational. Research conducted by Our World in Data found that in 10 years, the price of solar electricity has dropped 89%, and the price of onshore wind has dropped 70%.
  • Outdated coal plants are expensive to maintain. The inefficiencies of aging coal plants cause a significant financial strain to the business. The older they become, the more costs tied to operations and maintenance grow. To maintain current operations, many are forced to raise their energy prices or close entirely. According to Energy Innovation Policy and Technology’s Coal Cost Crossover 2.0 report, 158 U.S. plants have been retired since 2012.
  • Many coal plants are in debt. Many of the coal plants that aren’t shutting their doors are facing another obstacle—debt carried by the local co-ops that run them. As a result, dollars that could be spent making these plants more efficient or installing emission-control equipment are used to pay off long-standing bills. "

Does the cost of solar include the cost of building a backup fossil fuel plant, for when the wind doesn't blow and the sun doesn't shine? The only thing making wind and solar feasible right now is that we already have the fossil plants in place.

What percent of renewable generation is ideal?
 

m.knox

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Aug 20, 2003
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Yes really.
"

As of 2020, according to a report published by Energy Innovation Policy and Technology, 80% of existing U.S. coal plants are more expensive to keep in operation than replacing them with new wind and solar projects. In Nebraska, the same study showed this to be true for five of the state’s seven active plants, with four of these plants operating at a cost 29% or more higher than new wind.
There are a few key factors that play into this shift:
  • Renewable energy is gaining momentum—and getting a lot less expensive. Wind and solar technologies have greatly improved in the past decade, resulting in increased effectiveness, which is appealing to energy investors and communities alike. As demand has increased, so too has supply, driving down the cost of the parts and hardware required to get wind turbines and solar panels built and operational. Research conducted by Our World in Data found that in 10 years, the price of solar electricity has dropped 89%, and the price of onshore wind has dropped 70%.
  • Outdated coal plants are expensive to maintain. The inefficiencies of aging coal plants cause a significant financial strain to the business. The older they become, the more costs tied to operations and maintenance grow. To maintain current operations, many are forced to raise their energy prices or close entirely. According to Energy Innovation Policy and Technology’s Coal Cost Crossover 2.0 report, 158 U.S. plants have been retired since 2012.
  • Many coal plants are in debt. Many of the coal plants that aren’t shutting their doors are facing another obstacle—debt carried by the local co-ops that run them. As a result, dollars that could be spent making these plants more efficient or installing emission-control equipment are used to pay off long-standing bills. "


Jeff, I appreciate you trying to cite a source, but it would be wise to understand that source.

https://energyinnovation.org/

To put it very mildly, they have an agenda.

Coal isn't growing because democrats won't let it grow. Their stated goal is to kill coal. And in the meantime, it is driving electricity shortages.
 
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Hotshoe

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Poor Jeffrey. Does not understand what China and India are doing. He's a good Republican.
 

rumble_lion

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Poor Jeffrey. Does not understand what China and India are doing. He's a good Republican.
They are doing better than we are.

In 2021, China generated 2.48 trillion kWh of electricity from renewable energy sources, which accounted for 29.8 percent of the country's total electricity consumption
 
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DJ Spanky

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Means nothing.

Solar energy dips in months with less sunshine, and its production is less efficient in warmer weather. Wind and solar also decrease as a percentage of the total in the summer months, because higher demand for air conditioning leads to more use of coal- and gas-fired “peaker” power plants.

Get back to us when you have a stable alternative power source. Like nuclear was.
 

bdgan

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They are doing better than we are.

In 2021, China generated 2.48 trillion kWh of electricity from renewable energy sources, which accounted for 29.8 percent of the country's total electricity consumption
So what? If renewables were more reliable and less expensive why would they be building so many coal plants?
 
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pawrestlersintn

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They are doing better than we are.

In 2021, China generated 2.48 trillion kWh of electricity from renewable energy sources, which accounted for 29.8 percent of the country's total electricity consumption
LOL. They damn well better be in the lead. They have 1 billion people to provide electricity to. Now, do per capita. And, tell us the hydro share in China, and compare that to what is happening to hydro in the US.
 
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Monlion

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They are doing better than we are.

In 2021, China generated 2.48 trillion kWh of electricity from renewable energy sources, which accounted for 29.8 percent of the country's total electricity consumption
60% of China’s renewable generation is hydro and over the last 10 years the increase in China’s electricity generation from coal is more than 30% larger than its increase from wind and solar generation.
 

Sullivan

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Wouldn't higher coal prices make the coal fired plants even more expensive to operate?

Sure. Coal and natural gas prices are higher. Electricity rates are higher. And many solar projects are now being halted:

 
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SLUPSU

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If it was the most economical form of energy it wouldn't require any subsidies.

jfc... not this again, I've been posting link after link that proves this is nonsense. Here's one I posted over a year ago.

You're wrong, utility-grade PV solar and wind is now cheaper in many parts of the country even when you account for disappearing tax credits. It won't be long before the life cycle economics will be such that it will be cheaper to simply shutter some existing fossil fuel plants and build new solar.

https://emp.lbl.gov/sites/default/files/2020_utility-scale_solar_data_update.pdf
 
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SLUPSU

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If it was the most economical form of energy it wouldn't require any subsidies.

and here's another one in response to you....

It's amazing how entrenched in your ignorance you are.

At this point in time, in some locations/situations, it is actually cheaper, even without subsidies, to build and operate utility scale renewable plants than it is just to operate coal and nuclear. We are also at the inflection point where renewables are equal to or cheaper than gas. Utilities companies know this and have started the transition right under your nose while you whine and bitch.

https://www.lazard.com/media/450773..._campaign=newsletter_axiosgenerate&stream=top
 

The Spin Meister

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An altered state
B7
60% of China’s renewable generation is hydro and over the last 10 years the increase in China’s electricity generation from coal is more than 30% larger than its increase from wind and solar generation.
NK e job. This is a favorite tactic of the greenies. Start out talking about wind and solar and then sneak in the ‘renewable’ label hoping no one notices they switched to include hydro. Dishonest snakes.
 

SLUPSU

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What about you, SLU, are you going to build a grid based 100% on renewables?

Don't ask silly questions.

In 2021 new wind and solar accounted for 83% of new generation capacity and it's projected to be 73% in 2022, and from 2014 to 2021 they accounted for 60% of new generation. If all that new and future capacity was built at a cost less (see link below) than natgas even when you account for credits, haven't the utilities already decided which is the better way forward?

 

junior1

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May 29, 2001
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and here's another one in response to you....
all that's well and good...but just for fun, could you follow up and tell us how this cheaper energy generation translates to customer bills? Because from what I gather, energy bills, no matter what the generation media are going higher everywhere
 

pawrestlersintn

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Don't ask silly questions.

In 2021 new wind and solar accounted for 83% of new generation capacity and it's projected to be 73% in 2022, and from 2014 to 2021 they accounted for 60% of new generation. If all that new and future capacity was built at a cost less (see link below) than natgas even when you account for credits, haven't the utilities already decided which is the better way forward?

So, you would build out a grid using 100% renewables? Why is that a silly question?
 
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JeffClear

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Jeff, I appreciate you trying to cite a source, but it would be wise to understand that source.

https://energyinnovation.org/

To put it very mildly, they have an agenda.

Coal isn't growing because democrats won't let it grow. Their stated goal is to kill coal. And in the meantime, it is driving electricity shortages.
Coal power shrunk even when Trump was in office. It’s just not competitive any more. So much so, companies aren’t even trying to build new coal power plants.
 

pawrestlersintn

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Coal power shrunk even when Trump was in office. It’s just not competitive any more. So much so, companies aren’t even trying to build new coal power plants.
Can you do a cost comparison that includes the fossil fuel backup generating capacity that is required to provide stable electricity on the grid, when you start putting unreliable renewables on said grid?
 

JeffClear

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Can you do a cost comparison that includes the fossil fuel backup generating capacity that is required to provide stable electricity on the grid, when you start putting unreliable renewables on said grid?
You people need to pay attention, I have said many times, the power grid will likely include a mix of renewables, nuclear and natural gas, but coal, being more expensive and dirtier is not necessary and should be phased out as fast as we can.
And it’s not just CO2, burning coal puts sulfur, mercury, dioxins and other poisons into the air, and water that doesn’t include what coal mining does.
 

bdgan

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You people need to pay attention, I have said many times, the power grid will likely include a mix of renewables, nuclear and natural gas, but coal, being more expensive and dirtier is not necessary and should be phased out as fast as we can.
And it’s not just CO2, burning coal puts sulfur, mercury, dioxins and other poisons into the air, and water that doesn’t include what coal mining does.
You're dishonest because the truth doesn't fit your narrative.

Renewables are typically more expensive than fossil fuels. If that wan't the case the world wouldn't be spending a dime on fossil fuels. EVs might help to control smog in big cities but they are still more expensive to build. Solar might be a good option in sunny climates where there is plenty of land. Replacing a roof becomes much more expensive if you have to remove and reinstall solar panels.

Coal is down in the USA for two reasons. One is that we have abundant natural gas that is economical and much cleaner. Democrats oppose natural gas even though it has allowed us to reduce CO2 emissions. The other reason for Coal's decline in the U.S. is costly regulation. A lot of countries don't have the natural gas resources we have so they are still using coal. Why do you think Germany participated in Nordstream II? Why didn't they save a lot of money and just add windmills?

I don't oppose wind and solar. I'll probably buy an EV before long. But I listen to all points of view and try to make a rational assessment. You focus on the green agenda and remain willfully blind to the truth.
 

JeffClear

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You're dishonest because the truth doesn't fit your narrative.

Renewables are typically more expensive than fossil fuels. If that wan't the case the world wouldn't be spending a dime on fossil fuels. EVs might help to control smog in big cities but they are still more expensive to build. Solar might be a good option in sunny climates where there is plenty of land. Replacing a roof becomes much more expensive if you have to remove and reinstall solar panels.

Coal is down in the USA for two reasons. One is that we have abundant natural gas that is economical and much cleaner. Democrats oppose natural gas even though it has allowed us to reduce CO2 emissions. The other reason for Coal's decline in the U.S. is costly regulation. A lot of countries don't have the natural gas resources we have so they are still using coal. Why do you think Germany participated in Nordstream II? Why didn't they save a lot of money and just add windmills?

I don't oppose wind and solar. I'll probably buy an EV before long. But I listen to all points of view and try to make a rational assessment. You focus on the green agenda and remain willfully blind to the truth.
For generating electricity, the only fossil fuel companies are investing in the U.S. is natural gas.
Coal is still around because the coal plants have already been built and their owners still make more money by running them than they would by shutting them down.
But they aren't building any new plants and eventually all those coal plants will be closed. As for China, they are building coal plants for a variety of reasons.
These are all government decisions and they often make decisions based on politics.
Coal plants provide not only electricity but employment for coal miners, and money for well connected politicians.
In China they have built whole cities that nobody lives in because some government bureaucrat decided it would be a good idea to build them, probably with a lot of incentive from construction companies.
 

m.knox

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Coal power shrunk even when Trump was in office. It’s just not competitive any more. So much so, companies aren’t even trying to build new coal power plants.

Liberals have hated coal for decades Jeff. It made miners prosperous. The left doesn't want prosperity for working men and women.

Companies aren't because they CAN'T. I mean, Joe Biden single handedly stopped a pipeline from being built.

Jesus Jeff. It's like you argue for the sake of arguing.
 

Steve G

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Liberals have hated coal for decades Jeff. It made miners prosperous. The left doesn't want prosperity for working men and women.

Companies aren't because they CAN'T. I mean, Joe Biden single handedly stopped a pipeline from being built.

Jesus Jeff. It's like you argue for the sake of arguing.
and for extra credit (and not using Google) who proposed this statement:

Shift large industries and utilities to burning coal (of which domestic supplies are abundant) instead of oil or natural gas by taxing the use of the latter two fuels. Regulations are designed to prohibit most new industrial and utility use of oil and natural gas.
 

Steve G

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Liberals have hated coal for decades Jeff. It made miners prosperous. The left doesn't want prosperity for working men and women.

Companies aren't because they CAN'T. I mean, Joe Biden single handedly stopped a pipeline from being built.

Jesus Jeff. It's like you argue for the sake of arguing.
lets play "name that president" shall we? Who proposed:

The immediate goal of the President's proposed coal program is to increase the production of coal, presently at about 680 million tons per year, by 400 million tons per year by

A second goal is to provide efficient, economically feas- ible technologies for the longer term that will support the substitution of coal for oil and gas.

A major component of the proposed user tax is the existence of tax rebates to industries that convert to coal. An industrial user would have the option of either using an additional 10 percent investment tax credit or taking a rebate of up to that year's oil or gas tax and investing the rebate in coal conver- sion. Utilities would have the option of receiving a rebate on the user tax paid to be used for new construction which would help accelerate the retirement of facilities burning gas or oil.
 

2lion70

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This when the Trumptards pretend to care about birds.
How many fish, birds, and other animals (including humans) are killed by carbon based fuels - production and when burned? Oil spills, increased air pollution, mining accidents.....
 

2lion70

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Exactly, get the government out of it, and see how fast it grows.
The government has supported the oil/gas/coal industries for decades. It's about time they stand on their own 2 feet.
 

jjw165

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lets play "name that president" shall we? Who proposed:

The immediate goal of the President's proposed coal program is to increase the production of coal, presently at about 680 million tons per year, by 400 million tons per year by

A second goal is to provide efficient, economically feas- ible technologies for the longer term that will support the substitution of coal for oil and gas.

A major component of the proposed user tax is the existence of tax rebates to industries that convert to coal. An industrial user would have the option of either using an additional 10 percent investment tax credit or taking a rebate of up to that year's oil or gas tax and investing the rebate in coal conver- sion. Utilities would have the option of receiving a rebate on the user tax paid to be used for new construction which would help accelerate the retirement of facilities burning gas or oil.
Trump?
 

nitanee123

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How many fish, birds, and other animals (including humans) are killed by carbon based fuels - production and when burned? Oil spills, increased air pollution, mining accidents.....
It's a miniscule amount compared to the all of the benefits that carbon based fuels have had on humanity.
 
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JeffClear

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Liberals have hated coal for decades Jeff. It made miners prosperous. The left doesn't want prosperity for working men and women.

Companies aren't because they CAN'T. I mean, Joe Biden single handedly stopped a pipeline from being built.

Jesus Jeff. It's like you argue for the sake of arguing.
Focus, you are all over the place.
Companies could build coal plants but they don't because other forms of procuring electricity are now cheaper.
And coal should be heavily regulated because it is extremely dirty.
And many Pennsylvanians have first hand knowledge of the damage unregulated coal has done.
As for the pipeline, that was to carry dirty oil from the Canadian oil sands, not coal.
To say democrats don't want prosperity for working men and women is inaccurate.
More accurate is to say their base is more urban so their jobs aren't on the line by increased pollution regulation and their base benefits because they don't want to be affected by the pollution.
 

m.knox

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Focus, you are all over the place.
Companies could build coal plants but they don't because other forms of procuring electricity are now cheaper.
And coal should be heavily regulated because it is extremely dirty.
And many Pennsylvanians have first hand knowledge of the damage unregulated coal has done.
As for the pipeline, that was to carry dirty oil from the Canadian oil sands, not coal.
To say democrats don't want prosperity for working men and women is inaccurate.
More accurate is to say their base is more urban so their jobs aren't on the line by increased pollution regulation and their base benefits because they don't want to be affected by the pollution.

I'm all for building natural gas plants Jeff. You are your part hate them too. Meanwhile, electricity shortages loom because your side is composed of unhinged zealots who can't think past their outstretched hand.

We've made huge technological strides in the ability to burn coal and mitigate pollution.

https://www.powermag.com/using-technology-to-tackle-power-plant-emissions/

Heck, I'm working on a job with a firm in CA to capture the carbon from the exhaust and either re-use it, or send it several miles into the Earth's crust. Carbon capture. You can learn about it in the article.

Think about this Jeff. This is how far technology has come. The town upstream from me pulls its water from the river, cleans it up, sends it to its citizens where it is consumed. Downstream, past the dam, is their sewage treatment plant cleans up the sewage and puts the effluent BACK INTO THE RIVER.

Guess what happens next? My town pulls water from the river, cleans it up, and sends it to its citizens. Then downstream, past the dam (of course), the sewage treatment plant cleans up the sewage and puts the effluent BACK INTO THE RIVER.........

Guess how many times that happens on average? Like 7. Water is "recycled" 7 times on average before it hits the ocean.

See how technology works Jeff?
 

m.knox

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To say democrats don't want prosperity for working men and women is inaccurate.

They don't want prosperity. Shit, if they did, they would have followed what Trump did. Your party is loaded with idiots.
 

m.knox

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How many fish, birds, and other animals (including humans) are killed by carbon based fuels - production and when burned? Oil spills, increased air pollution, mining accidents.....

I want the poor to be warm in the winter. You don't?
 

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