A Free-Market Energy Blog


Posts from January 2016

Google Confirms: PV Rooftop Solar Is Uneconomic

By Donn Dears -- January 28, 2016

“PV rooftop solar is a bad investment, and a bad use of taxpayer money. Google’s Project Sunroof is now helping to confirm this. Money wasted on a bad investment isn’t available for a good investment.”

Google has recently unveiled a project to help homeowners determine whether they should invest in PV rooftop solar to save money. Inadvertently, Project Sunroof is demonstrating that PV rooftop solar is uneconomic.

Project Sunroof is being rolled out across the United States, but is currently only available in a few cities.

The Project Sunroof website uses a few specific examples to demonstrate the viability of PV rooftop solar at those locations.

The book Nothing to Fear provides similar information by state, using a program supplied by an installer. Google’s evaluation’s are probably more accurate because the satellite images of rooftops used by Google can discern shading by trees or other obstacles.…

An Open Request to Resources for the Future (RFF)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- January 27, 2016

Previous posts at MasterResource have documented the lack of open intellectual inquiry at Resources for the Future (RFF) regarding the physical science of climate change and the case for government-led transformation of energy sources.

A third post yesterday documented RFF’s buy-in to resource pessimism and gapism (more government intervention in place of price and allocation decontrol) in the pivotal 1970s.

Trends can change. They should change. RFF as a scholarly organization should:

1. Recognize the physical science of climate change as highly unsettled and thus open to contrary public policy positions.

Implication: Consider ‘global lukewarming” as a base case for economic analysis.

2. Recognize the benefits, the positive externalities, associated with the anthropogenic influence on climate.

Implication: Open a research program on the benefits of carbon dioxide emissions/concentrations, not only costs, as has been the case with RFF’s analytics to date.

RFF: Going Malthusian in the 1970s (precursor to climate alarmism)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- January 26, 2016

“A review of energy developments in 1976, published in RFF’s Resources magazine (Jan–March 1977, p. 3) reached a Hotelling-like conclusion: ‘Nonrenewable and exhaustible fuels supply most of our needs now,’ the staff article stated, ‘but they will be increasingly expensive to obtain and use, until, around some distant corner, they will be replaced’.”

In its first half century, RFF’s central message has gone from energy optimism to energy pessimism, complete with an embrace of major government intervention in energy markets. The transformation began in the 1970s with a fixity/depletion view of mineral resources, which spawned conservationism (less energy usage for its own sake, with a government role).

And when the energy-short 1970s turned into the energy surplus of the 1980s, RFF’s angst shifted to issues surrounding a human influence on global climate, primarily from carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from the burning of coal, oil, and natural gas.…

AWED Energy & Environmental Newsletter: January 25, 2016

By <a class="post-author" href="/about#john-droz">John Droz, Jr.</a> -- January 25, 2016

RFF Goes Nice on Renewables: Revisiting a 1999 Paper and Its Criticism

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- January 21, 2016

Resources for the Future: How Far Is Left? (energy statism on full display)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- January 20, 2016

Wherever Sited, Industrial Wind Is a Loser

By Mary Kay Barton -- January 19, 2016

COP 21’s Shared Narrative Under Attack by Left (climate emperor has no cloths)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- January 14, 2016

‘Are We Running Out of Oil?’ (2004 essay revised)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- January 13, 2016

Dodging Science and Transparency at Altamont Pass (wind industry gets away with shoddy research)

By Jim Wiegand -- January 12, 2016