by Rick Whitbeck at wattsupwiththat.com
Anyone looking to combat the activists pushing a ‘net zero’ agenda here in the U.S. would be wise to read Darwall’s piece, entitled “The Folly of Climate Leadership.”
The analysis tells the story of Great Britain heeding the cries for decarbonization, starting when Parliament wrote an 80% decrease in emissions target into law in 2008. They raised it to 100% – or “net zero” – in 2019. The results have clearly been catastrophic.
Since decarbonization efforts commenced, Britain’s economy has grown at half the rate as it did from 1990-2008. According to a research study from noted British economic historian Nicholas Crafts, that’s the second-worst period of British peacetime growth since 1780.
In addition to the economic malaise, British energy prices have skyrocketed, and Britons are now concerned with how to survive the effect of those costs on their wallets, as they look to heat and power their homes and businesses, travel for work and pleasure and live life as best they can.
The differences between British energy costs and those here in the U.S. are staggering: Britons paid an average of $228 per megawatt hour (MWh) for electricity generated from coal in 2022, whereas Americans paid an average of $27 per MWh. For natural gas, 2022 saw Britons paying $251 per MWh, versus American consumers averaging $61 per MWh for their power.
Darwall’s report also highlights the effects of unchecked and anti-market driven government investment in ‘green’ energy on grid reliability, as intermittent production from wind and solar – coupled with a lack of utility-grade energy storage – dropped electricity generated per gigawatt of capacity falling 28% since 2009.
The same arguments that have crippled Britain’s economy are now being used by the Biden Administration here at home, with zealots in Cabinet-level positions – including Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm, Interior Secretary Deb Haaland, and EPA Director Michael Regan – pushing the message from their bully pulpits.