The reduction is even more impressive when one considers that 57 million additional energy consumers were added to the U.S. population over the past two decades. Indeed, U.S. carbon emissions have dropped about 20 percent per capita, and are now at their lowest level since Dwight D. Eisenhower left the White House in 1961.David Victor, an energy expert at UC-San Diego, estimates that the shift from coal to natural gas has reduced U.S. emissions by 400 to 500 megatons CO2 per year. To put that number in perspective, it is about twice the total effect of the Kyoto Protocol on carbon emissions in the rest of the world, including the European Union.
I guess Crap and Trade on CO2 emissions won't make Al Gore a Climate Change Millionaire after all. Maybe he should have invested in some fracking companies because they seem to be doing more to combat global warming then he has. What is eye-opening though is how little renewable energy is contributing to CO2 reduction.
It is tempting to believe that renewable energy sources are responsible for emissions reductions, but the numbers clearly say otherwise. Accounting for a reduction of 50 Mt of CO2 per year, America’s 30,000 wind turbines reduce emissions by just one-10th the amount that natural gas does. Biofuels reduce emissions by only 10 megatons, and solar panels by a paltry three megatons.
Wind turbines are an eyesore and solar panels do almost nothing to reduce the CO2. Plus biofuels get the dubious distinction of wasting acreage that could have fed someone to power someone elses car instead. So instead of wasting money on this stuff I guess we should just build more natural gas and next generation nuclear plants instead.
What is interesting is that it seems that market forces will reduce the hated CO2 emissions far faster than some policy-maker driven boondoggle or rigged crap-and-trade CO2 scheme ever could. I wonder in light of these facts do we still have to pony up $300 billion to give to third-world despots to combat climate change?
If the Red Chinese follow our lead and start their own fracking and build a bunch of natural gas power plants maybe we can get this global warming thing licked in the next decade. The poor climate scientists with all their scare-mongering will have to go into a new field because the grant money and rubbing elbows with Matt Damon will all disappear.