American Elephants


Fantasy and Talking Points In Search of a Legacy for Obama by The Elephant's Child

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The Democrat’s Convention platform is slowly being revealed, unprobable bit by bit. It will include a plan to get the United States completely off of fossil fuels by 2050. Oh dear. Not going to happen.  Who writes these talking points? Doesn’t anyone ever check in with reality?

President Barack Obama met at a “Three Amigos” summit in Ottawa this week with  Prime Minister Trudeau of Canada and President Enrique Peña Nieto of Mexico. The three NAFTA partners will pledge that in less than 10 years, half of North America’s energy will come from “clean” sources. The administration patted itself on the back and called it “ambitious.” How about “improbable” or “a joke?”

The U.S. accounts for three quarters of the energy produced by the three countries., so living up to the agreement falls on the U.S. According to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration, so-called “clean energy”— nuclear, hydro electric, solar, wind, biomass makes up a total of less than one-fifth of U.S. energy production.

Nuclear accounts for around 8% of all clean energy, and California plans to shut down Diablo Canyon, their last nuke, which produces two times more energy than all of California’s solar arrays put together. The environmentalists who are energy-literate are beginning to understand that only nuclear power is currently capable of generating significant amounts of baseload electricity. The first new nuclear plant is starting up in Tennessee with environmental support. Biomass accounts for 4%, solar and wind put together only 3% of our energy needs and hydroelectric a little more than 2%. Environmentalists oppose hydro, because they don’t like damming up rivers, and most of the good spots are already taken.

Even if they went whole hog for Nuclear energy, it wouldn’t make any difference over the next decade.The permitting, construction and approval steps alone would take more than 9 years. Obama said he was sure that some 15 year-old was working on a new energy source in his bedroom, or perhaps it was his garage.

But that leaves wind, solar and biomass. Production levels from these sources would have to increase by something like 470% in nine years to add up to half of the nation’s energy production. Well, maybe everyone will have forgotten his silly pledge in 9 years. Keep trying, maybe you’ll find something to claim as a legacy.


4 Comments so far
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Oh, I wouldn’t worry about Obama; his legacy is rock solid. The lowest labor participation rate since the 70’s, an almost $5000 decline in median income, an unworkable mess of a healthcare law (often cited as a major drag on business), a Middle East in complete disarray, allies that don’t trust us, enemies that don’t fear us, more violence in the name of Islam to the point where it’s an actual concern of the voting public (it barely registered in 2012), a consistent erosion of educational standards at all levels…

Obama has a legacy.

Comment by Lon Mead

I almost feel a little sorry for him. He did a spectacular job of blowing the whole thing. The trouble is that his “legacy” is going to come back and bite the rest of us, perhaps very badly.

Comment by The Elephant's Child

Oh, without a doubt. He hasn’t really broken anything that can’t be fixed, but it’s going to take some time.

Comment by Lon Mead

Depends on where the Iranians really are with a nuclear weapon and ICBMs.

Comment by The Elephant's Child




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