Saturday, March 19, 2011

The public doesn’t fully appreciate the bargain they are making with the devils of pollution, radiation, and Climate Change.

 

Why should the energy we use cost us so many lives and heat our planet to the boiling point? Remember also, in the long term many of the fossil fuels kill thousands over the years from particulates in the air and increasing ground-level ozone.

Charting the Human Cost of Different Types of Energy - ProPublicaSince this time last year, we’ve seen a deadly mine disaster [1], the worst oil spill in U.S. history [2], and now a nuclear crisis in Japan [3]. That got us wondering—how does one compare or quantify the human cost of different sources of energy? As it turns out, a Swiss research organization, the Paul Sherrer Institute, has been doing just that. Using data from the institute, we pulled together a few visualizations. March 18, 2011) ProPublica

Despite the attempt by environmentalist and renewable energy companies, this assumption that we have to use dirty and dangerous energy to survive continues without so much as a mention that it does not have to be this way.

The Sierra Club, for example, presents an entirely different scenario for our future than an acceptance and assumption that millions must die so we can have energy:

“We can build an unprecedented coalition of workers, non-profits and businesses to retrofit our inefficient buildings, construct new low-carbon structures, modernize our energy grid, push for laws requiring energy utilities to provide greater percentages of electricity from renewable sources, and allow companies and consumers to earn money from saving energy or generating clean power.” Clean Energy Solutions - Sierra Club

Why is it that rather than change our ways, will accept without question the dismal scenario that we can only have oil, coal, and nuclear power and all that comes with them for our future energy needs?

They say that wind and solar, which is just a small percent of our energy mix (1% wind, 1% solar), cannot do the job. But, they’ve hardly been given these renewable a chance because wind farms are constantly being fought for aesthetic reasons and solar dismissed because we don’t get enough sunshine in Rochester, NY—even though our airport just put up many of them and will reduce energy costs?

They say that renewable energy cannot survive without giant subsidies from the government even though we give billions of tax breaks to oil companies.

They say that when the wind does blow we cannot get energy and when the sun isn’t shining we cannot get power, when we know that battery storage (maybe even warming water, which is a form of energy storage) can change this equation. Also, because wind and solar power can be localized, these renewable energy sources can often be onsite instead of being put on the grid and losing much of their power in long transmission lines.

Despite the many disaster associated with our present form of energy supplies we will not move to renewable energy, we will fight every attempt to construct wind farms, we will fight subsidies for any renewable energy sources, and we will embrace a plan for our future that means putting our environment and our health at the very edge of survival.

Large majority says nuclear energy is safe | Rochester Business Journal New York business news and information More than eight in 10 respondents to this week’s RBJ Daily Report Snap Poll say nuclear power is safe. And more than half think it is very safe. The poll was conducted as the Japanese government declared an emergency at one of the country’s nuclear power plants and ordered thousands evacuated after Friday’s 9.0-magnitude earthquake and tsunami shut down its reactors. Emergency workers were forced to leave the nuclear power plant when radiation levels soared. (March 19, 2011) Home | Rochester Business Journal New York business news and information

Besides the overwhelming amount of money thrust into the media’s hands to support oil, coal, and nuclear to reinforce that these energy forms are safe and clean, there are probably a zillion psychological reasons why we hold to such a dismal future of death and destruction. We are used to the way things are. We don’t like change. We can’t imagine doing with less energy, when we want even more. We don’t believe in Climate Change because our media isn’t constantly reminding us that Climate Change is happening. We believe that in life there is a certain amount of risk and danger we have to accept because that is the way it has always has been.

But if we don’t change our ways, we really will be more than just inconvenienced with occasional nuclear fallout, sporadic oil spills, or periodic mine disasters. Oil, coal, and nuclear power are factoring into our very ability to survive because they are warming the planet or so potentially dangerous, as in nuclear power, that our ecologies will be disrupted for centuries. Climate Change and nuclear radiation will present an inconvenience us on a scale never before experienced by humanity.

Our officials say there is only a ‘slim’ change of a nuclear disaster here in the Rochester, NY region. But there shouldn’t be any.

Officials: Slim chance of nuclear leak at Ginna - Greece, NY - Greece Post Webster, N.Y. — With the unfolding nuclear disaster in Japan, northeastern Monroe County residents are reminded of the nuclear energy in their own backyard. The Ginna Nuclear Power Plant is just miles from the county border, putting Webster and Penfield residents within a 10-mile emergency zone if tragedy were to strike the plant. Although scientists have found a fault line running beneath Lake Ontario, plant officials say the Ontario plant is not in danger of being damaged by the magnitude of quakes that shook Japan last week. On Wednesday, a 4.7-magnitude quake struck about 300 miles away in Canada — near the same spot that a quake rumbled last June, shaking Rochester. Scientists have also found a fault line running through Lake Ontario. (March 18, 2011) Homepage - Greece, NY - Greece Post

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