Barack Obama literally sacrificed the coal and oil industries for green energy projects. Like so many other bleeding-heart liberal environmentalists, he believed that green energy was a safer form of energy production.
But is green energy really that much better for the environment?
Take electric cars for example. Their huge batteries are filled with highly corrosive materials that need to be disposed of at some point in time. Additionally, areas where the lead and lithium are mined and processed often leave the general landscape as barren as the surface of the moon.
Don’t forget cost. The last time I had to replace the battery in my car it cost me around $100. In 2014, estimates to replace the ‘drive motor battery’ in a Chevy Volt ran anywhere from $3,400 up to as much as $34,000. Chevrolet dealerships in Los Angeles and Grand Rapids were called and asked for a quote to replace the battery unit in a 2012 Chevy Volt. They were given quotes that ranged from $3,400 to $34,000 depending on exactly what needed to be done and they needed to see the vehicle in order to ascertain what repairs needed to be done.
I went on the Kelly Blue Book website, in 2014, to find out how much a 2012 Chevy Volt in excellent condition was worth. It gave me a dealer trade-in value of $18,350. When I checked on selling it to a private party, it gave me a value of $19,835. So, a car that is less than 2 years old still in excellent condition is worth less than the cost for a total battery replacement of $24,000.
Okay, so green energy electric cars are extremely expensive to maintain and they produce a lot of highly toxic and hazardous waste. But what about solar energy? It uses sunlight, which is abundant and renewable and doesn’t produce any harmful emissions, so isn’t it safe for the environment?
First of all, there are a number of reported incidents of birds flying over solar energy fields and getting fried in the air.
Secondly, what about solar panels that have outlived their usefulness?
This is a problem now being faced by Japan and California. Japan’s Environmental Ministry issued a statement last November saying that the current annual number of old and discarded solar panels is around 10,000 tons. They also estimated that by the year 2040, the annual amount of old and discarded solar panels will rise to 800,000 tons. While California’s figures may not be as high as Japan’s, the Golden State is the world’s number one source of solar panels and they have become widely used throughout the state.
Why are these discarded solar panels such a problem since they are a form of green energy?
According to one report:
“Environmental Progress investigated the problem to see how the problem compared to the much more high-profile issue of nuclear waste.
- Solar panels create 300 times more toxic waste per unit of energy than do nuclear power plants.
- If solar and nuclear produce the same amount of electricity over the next 25 years that nuclear produced in 2016, and the wastes are stacked on football fields, the nuclear waste would reach the height of the Leaning Tower of Pisa (52 meters), while the solar waste would reach the height of two Mt. Everests (16 km).
- In countries like China, India, and Ghana, communities living near e-waste dumps often burn the waste in order to salvage the valuable copper wires for resale. Since this process requires burning off the plastic, the resulting smoke contains toxic fumes that are carcinogenic and teratogenic (birth defect-causing) when inhaled.”
Before America abandons fossil fuels for higher cost green energy, we need to take a close look at the overall picture. What effects are there to the environment in the mining and pumping of materials used for green energy? What happens when these products outlive their usefulness and how toxic are they to the land, air, water and to people? It seems that when you look at the entire picture, green energy is really a black death-causing energy.