A Free-Market Energy Blog

Walzel Strikes for Climate Realism (Houston Chronicle interview fair, telling)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- September 2, 2021

“But in the nearly 4,000-page study, skeptics note, the term “low confidence” — jargon for findings where there is conflicting evidence — occurs almost 1,400 times. The term “likely” — which could mean a degree of certainty as low as 66 percent — appears thousands of times, including as to whether major hurricanes have increased in frequency since the 1980s.” (Jim Osborne, Houston Chronicle below)

The title of the featured story is loaded. The interview started from the premise of climate alarmism. But one Jim Walzel, 84 years young, did just fine in making the point that climate science is quite unsettled and not indicative of crisis–just like previous scares he has witnessed in his long lifetime.

James Osborne’s “These skeptics believe in climate change. Why is it so hard to convince them catastrophe is coming?” (Houston Chronicle, August 30, 2021) is notable for several reasons.

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The Great Kemper County Caper (Southern Company rides again)

By Jim Clarkson -- September 1, 2021

Ed. note: Jim Clarkson, a longtime critic of public utility regulation, as well as the capture of regulators by the regulated in the Southeast power market, penned this mock interview about the Kemper County coal-gasification-and-capture boondoggle. The original $2.4 billion project reached $7.5 billion before abandonment. The plant now runs as combined-cycle natural-gas plant. Other problems and issues with Kemper are described here (2016) and here (2019) and here (2020).

Joe Anchorman: Good evening.  The top story we are following tonight concerns a power plant being built in Mississippi, where a carbon capture technology is being attempted to meet political goals.

Southern Company, a large utility holding company, had cut a deal with the Environmental Protection Agency to demonstrate an expensive, but impractical, technology so the EPA can claim it is feasible enough to require its use for all new coal generators.

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On the History of Resource Thought (Vettese dissertation comments)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- August 31, 2021

“[My] early writing was from a viewpoint that there was an ocean of BTUs beneath our feet, and what was high cost and supplemental today would become low cost and conventional later. I ‘trusted’ human ingenuity. I turned out ‘right’ for the wrong technological reason: horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing.”

Any intellectual is interested in what is written about him or her, whether it be in the newspaper or an essay, book, or doctoral dissertation. In my case, being of 66 summers, and having a lot of scholarship under my belt, I do not worry much about the momentary ad hominem stuff. But for the record, I am eager to correct with facts and interpretation as needed.

This brings me to a dissertation, “Limits and Cornucopianism: A History of Neo-Liberal Environmental Thought, 1920–2007” (New York University: 2019).

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Martis in the Solar and Wind Fight: The Latest

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- August 30, 2021
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Can-do Petroleum vs. Can’t Do Renewables (Part II)

By Steve Overholt -- August 27, 2021
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Can-do Petroleum vs. Can’t Do Renewables (Part I)

By Steve Overholt -- August 26, 2021
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Andrew Dessler vs. The ‘a–hole’ World

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- August 25, 2021
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Nuclear Power Not Welcome at COP26

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- August 24, 2021
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Texas’s Renewables: How Did the Problem Start? (Enron, Republicans Running Wild)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- August 23, 2021
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Climate Leadership Council on Defense (ExxonMobil caper hits the front group)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- August 19, 2021
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