Clean Energy is Patriotic

A response to a comment that ‘environmentalists are anti-American’.
Top military advisors have repeatedly stated that US dependence on fossil fuels is a serious vulnerability for our national defense for several reasons.
First, the relatively small amount of oil and natural gas reserves on US territory, 4% of the world total, means that the prices and reliable provision of these fuels are not within our control. Wind, solar, geothermal, hydrogen and algae fuel could all be manufactured in America, by Americans, and purchased for American security without giving favors to other countries or obligating us to meet their demands.
Second, the disruption of the climate mostly caused by burning fossil fuels is a threat to peace. Increasing droughts, floods, rising seas, acid oceans and fires are reducing food and water supplies and increasing instability, unrest and pressures to emigrate, a serious pressure on our military.

The cost of fuel is another factor. In 2010, army installations spent $2.1 billion on electricity. A $10 rise in the price of a barrel of oil costs the military an extra billion.A strong American industry manufacturing green energy and efficiency technology would be of great benefit to our military. Changing electricity sources for military installations to clean energy would help scale up the industry and reduce prices.

Finally, there is a safety factor. Installing solar panels and insulation on tents to reduce fuel convoys saves troops’ lives. Reducing use of flammable and polluting fuels is better for our health. 

It is thoroughly American to protect the purity of our waters, the stability of our climate,  and the freedom of consumers to choose new and improved products free from unfair competition by entrenched monopolies.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/cif-green/2010/oct/28/oil-us-military-biofuels

http://bit.ly/11wje2a

http://www.cna.org/EnsuringFreedomofMovement

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/earth-insight/2013/jun/14/climate-change-energy-shocks-nsa-prism

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Grid systems balance power as wind and solar increase

How do we keep refrigerators running 24/7 as more solar and wind power is installed? Texas, California and Iowa are now getting 20% of their electricity from renewables; and the US average is 13% and growing.

Electricity needs to flow continuously. All power plants stop sometimes, for maintenance or accidents, and demand changes by the minute, with temperature changes or popular media events.

Grid operators are the quarterbacks; they keep it happening; they call the plays. Working in giant control rooms with huge arrays of dozens of screens monitoring electric input and output,  they balance the supply and move electricity to where it is needed. Weather reports help  grid operators plan. When the wind is dying down, or  clouds are on the horizon, operators pull power from other areas that are making plenty of electricity, or  turn on idled plants, and increase supply. The bigger the area served by a grid station, the more options it has for balancing the electric load.

Check out this video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gSiCRZcJnfE

Carbon Tax proposed to Congressional Committee

Three proposals listed in the House Ways & Means Committee report on tax reform call for a carbon tax: Center for American Progress (CAP) plan calls for a price on greenhouse gas emissions (CO2), an oil import fee of $5/barrel and elimination of US tax breaks for fossil fuels. and The Economic Policy Institute (EPI) calls for a tax on carbon at its source, an increase in motor fuel excise tax and elimination of tax preferences for fossil fuel production. The Roosevelt Institute Campus Network Budget for a Millennial America plan calls for an upstream carbon tax starting at $23/T and increasing 5.6% per year.

http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CPRT-113JPRT80634/pdf/CPRT-113JPRT80634.pdf