Submitted by antifascistpotor in Green
My criticism green new deal The difficulty here is that "tech" matters not a lot, what matters is how cheap and energy dense the fuel is, and electricity is not a fuel, it is a transmission technology. Light from the sun for solar cells and wind or water for turbines are fuels, and they cost zero, but:
- They are intermittent, cannot be stored (light, wind) or are only available in a few places (water).
- Electricity as a transmissions technology is not very suitable for vehicles (batteries are expensive, don't last long, are very polluting, and heavy and bulky).
- The capital costs are huge. Currently the capital costs look lower only because the manufacturing of turbines and solar cells is in effect powered and subsidized by coal/gas/oil. The only fuels that compete with fossil fuels so far are radioactive metals (U, Pu, Th), and because they are very poisonous the capital costs are also huge. My current best (and likely optimistic) guess is that switching out of fossil fuels would cut living standards to the level they had in 1900-1920, which is currently considered below poverty level.
Does this forum support cutting living standards to that level?
Fossil fuels probably account for around 90-95% of our current living standards, and replacing them with more expensive, less energy dense fuels to the point that the fossil fuel lobby were seriously weakened would cut the living standards of most people quite a lot. That "Green New Deal" is a very nice illusion unfortunately.
Giving precise estimates is pretty much impossible, but that does not mean that all estimates are worthless. Form some details of how important are fossil fuels as to living standards:
The better alternative would be to ensure that the fossil fuel industry were not controlled by rapacious and reckless rentiers, but that would be quite a big battle.
ziq wrote (edited )
what makes you think anyone here gives a shit about the policies of a faction of a US political party?
no, I'd go much, much further