Even Shell Oil knows Obama's "green energy" plans are stupid
Shell Oil, which has fully (and disappointingly) bought into the global warming hype and whose web site features “Responsible Energy” as the very first thing on the home page, announced last week that they will no longer be investing (at least not in any significant way) in wind or solar energy projects.
To the extent that they will continue investing in “alternative energy", it will be in biofuels not created from food crops.
So just as one of the world’s largest oil companies is effectively abandoning most “alternative energy” spending because it is not profitable, our government has decided to spend or guarantee through loans or subsidize through tax credits tens of billions of dollars of “renewable energy” development including plenty of money for wind, solar, and unspecified “green jobs". [A summary of the “stimulus” bill (i.e. everything for everyone) can be found HERE, with some of the energy provisions on page 4.]
According to a Shell executive board member, “On wind and solar (energy), they’re interesting, but they continue to struggle in comparison with the other investment opportunities we have in our portfolio, even with substantial subsidies.” (emphasis mine) In other words, the Federal government’s spending in these areas is guaranteed to be a huge financial loser for the American taxpayer. After all, if a smart private company with an interest in being efficient can’t develop wind or solar profitably, even with government covering part of the cost, it is inconceivable that the government itself – an organization which never cares about efficiency or profits (except to the extent that they can take ours) – would do anything but waste billions of our dollars in order to please the Democrats’ radical environmentalist and anti-capitalist supporters.
I’m very pleased by Shell’s decision, which I’m sure will not surprise my regular readers. I participate in a mostly-European online “dialogue” called “Comment:Visions” which is largely sponsored by Shell, perhaps in their continuing quest to suck up to environmental activists and the muddle-headed public who believe everything they hear in the mainstream media. It was interesting to read that Shell has only spent about $1.25 billion on “green energy” in the decade from 1996-2006 (i.e. over 10 years, not per year)…for a company that regularly spends over $10 billion each year on operating and development expenses.
The last Shell-sponsored “dialogue” was about biofuels, and you can read my contribution here:
A couple of relevant lines from my comment:
Furthermore, biofuels made from food crops should be ended as an energy source. Here in America, people are slowly learning that corn ethanol is an inefficient energy source and is no better – and arguably worse – for the environment than gasoline. Furthermore, it results in massive transfers of wealth from taxpayers around the nation to a relatively small number of farmers, mostly large agribusiness corporations, in the form of subsidies.
Eventually, biofuels will make sense, especially if cellulosic ethanol production can be made more efficient. But it’s time for our leaders to admit that they can’t save the world by burning our food.
Now I don’t think anyone at Shell read that comment, but I have a glimmer of hope that someone read this note I sent directly to an executive at Shell:
First, I want to thank you and Shell for organizing “dialogues” including “Comment: Visions".
As a contributor to the project, I would like to offer one personal comment which I also hope you’ll pass up the food chain.
Shell became a great corporation because of free-market capitalism, not by pandering to the cult-of-the-day during various economic or other fads. It troubles me greatly to see Shell being proud of being “one of the first energy companies to acknowledge the threat of climate change.” Anthropogenic global warming is an anti-capitalist hoax being perpetrated by politicians, lobbyists, and radical environmentalists who use it to try to increase their wealth and power at the expense of everyone else on earth.
Oil is a blessing not a curse. Shell’s exploration and development of fossil fuel resources is a gift to the planet and the company should not act as if it’s ashamed to be part of the reason that people can drive their cars, cook their food, and heat their homes.
It is truly reprehensible that Mr. van der Veer says that “the scientific debate about climate change is over” when the overwhelming evidence of data in the past decade is that (1) the planet isn’t warming, (2) CO2 isn’t a particularly important contributor to climate change, (3) CO2 concentrations come AFTER temperature changes, and (4) the world is not losing any important amount of sea ice.
It is tremendously cynical of companies such as those in the US Climate Action Partnership to buy into the propaganda and lies of Al Gore in order to try to create new markets, to force us to buy new expensive light bulbs (which are dangerous if broken, can’t be used on a dimmer, and only “save energy” if you leave them on all the time.)
Support for “cap and trade” which is a failed experiment in Europe and based on the same junk science as the rest of global warming alarmism is also sad to see from a great company like Shell.
In summary, Shell should be standing up for itself and its industry, making clear the great benefits to society from having a thriving oil industry. It should not be sucking up to snake oil salesman and money-grubbing “scientists” whose only interest is in maximizing their grant money by frightening people and politicians.
One day, the world will realize that we’re being cheated by the high priests of the cult of global warming, and customers will appreciate a company which wasn’t one of the choir boys.
I appreciate the opportunity to offer my thoughts on Comment:Visions and I hope that you will pass this message along inside Shell, including to Mr. van der Veer.
Ross G Kaminsky
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