Guest MJaGA! by David Middleton
MjaGA = Making Japan Great Again
From the Midget Oligarch Reporting On News Service (MORONS)…
Japan Goes Into Reverse on Going Green
The country abandoned nuclear energy and is building coal plants that will spew as much CO2 as all the cars in the U.S.
By Noah Smith
February 5, 2020
Modern living standards — indoor lighting, affordable food, heat in the winter, an internet connection — require energy. And every energy source has its drawbacks. It’s easy to point out the downsides of a given energy source and call for it to be banned. But if we’re not careful about weighing costs against benefits, we’re liable to end up with something even worse.
This is becoming painfully evident in the case of Japan. In 2011, a nuclear power plant in northeast Japan’s Fukushima prefecture was damaged by a huge tsunami and had multiple meltdowns. The radioactive contamination is still being dealt with and will be a major drain on government resources for decades to come.
But total electricity consumption dipped only slightly. Where did Japan make up the difference? Fossil fuels. These went from 62% of Japan’s electricity production before the disaster to about 80% after:Bloomberg
It gets even better…
Even worse, it looks as if this is the new normal for Japan, at least for the next decade. A government push for green energy and rising public concerns about climate change have forced the cancellation of a few coal plants in favor of renewable sources. But the country is still on track to add more than 20 coal plants in the next five years. These plants are expected to emit as much carbon as all the passenger cars in the U.S.Bloomberg
Japan has had a lot of help from the rest of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere…
And that help will likely carry on for decades…
The MORONS journalist actually had a rational opinion piece going, right up until the last paragraph…
So nuclear won’t be the thing that saves us from climate change; that task will fall to solar. But shuttering existing nuclear plants in the next decade would be a mistake. Despite the risks, the world isn’t ready for an abrupt transition away from nuclear. Getting rid of fossil fuels needs to be the top priority, and existing nuclear plants will remain a very important stopgap until solar really ramps up.Bloomberg
And in 2050 we will still likely be getting 2.5 times as much primary energy from fossil fuels as we will from renewables, including hydroelectric.
The problem for people like Noah, is that there has never actually been an energy transition.
We derive more energy from biomass now than we did when wood and whale oil were our primary energy sources. Renewables won’t be replacing anything. They’ll just be piled on top of the energy sources we were already tapping.
Noah Smith received his PhD in economics from the University of Michigan, graduating in 2012. His dissertation concerns expectation formation in financial markets. Noah majored in physics as an undergraduate at Stanford University, and spent three years working in Japan, where he still returns from time to time to do research.Business Insider
And Noah, about that saving us from the weather thing…