April 17, 2012
George Will Embraces Decarbonization
By Michael Shellenberger
Last month, Ted and I argued in Yale e360 that there were reasons for decarbonization other than climate change -- many commenters were incredulous. For example: "Although, fwiw, the content of their message is wrong and frankly stupid as well -- what 'bipartisan agreement has grown on the need to decarbonize our energy' exists that is divorced from climate change concerns?"
Enter George Will, not exactly a believer in mainstream climate science, offering a non-climate reason for decarb:
"America's 250-year supply of coal will be an important source of energy. But even people not much worried about the supposed climate damage done by carbon emissions should see the wisdom--cheaper electricity, less dependence on foreign sources of energy--of Tennessee Sen. Lamar Alexander's campaign to commit the country to building 100 more nuclear power plants in 20 years."
Whatever your position on nukes, Will is making the case in point.
Toward the end, he even starts to sound like a Breakthrough Senior Fellow.
"In September 1942, the federal government purchased 59,000 acres of wilderness in eastern Tennessee and built an instant city--streets, housing, schools, shops, and the world's most sophisticated scientific facilities. This was--is--Oak Ridge. Just 34 months later, a blinding flash illuminating the New Mexico desert announced the dawn of the atomic age. That is what Americans can do when motivated."