375. Sacrificing the Poor to NOT Save the Planet | Robert Bryce

    Energy density and reliability are important considerations in developing sustainable energy systems, despite the merits of wind and solar power.

    enJuly 13, 2023

    About this Episode

    Dr. Jordan B. Peterson and Robert Bryce discuss the topics from his latest book, “A Question of Power: Electricity and the Wealth of Nations,” the current audacity of the zero-emissions agenda, its effects on the developing world, the feasibility of coal and nuclear power, the catastrophic problems related to wind and solar power, and the positive vision for the future we can all share, should our institutions finally drop the doomsday narrative.


    Robert Bryce is an author, podcaster, and film producer. He has been writing about energy, power, politics, and innovation for more than three decades. He is the acclaimed author of six books on energy and innovation, including most recently, A Question of Power: Electricity and the Wealth of Nations. Bryce has given more than 400 invited or keynote lectures to groups ranging from the Marines Corps War College to the Sydney Institute as well as to a wide variety of associations, universities, and corporations. His articles have been published in dozens of publications including The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, Forbes, Real Clear Energy, The Hill, and Guardian. Bryce has also appeared on a panoply of media outlets ranging from Fox News to Al Jazeera.



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    For Robert Bryce:


    Robert on Twitter @pwrhungry https://twitter.com/pwrhungry?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor


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    Robert Bryce on Substack: robertbryce.substack.com


    The “Power Hungry Podcast” on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@RobertBryce


    Roberts latest book: “A Question of Power: Electricity and the Wealth of Nations.” https://www.amazon.com/Question-Power-Electricity-Wealth-Nations/dp/1610397495


    FREE to watch: “Juice: How Electricity Explains The World,” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oYMXNn56kTo

    🔑 Key Takeaways

    • Developing countries should have the freedom to choose their energy sources based on practicality and immediate needs, rather than being forced into renewable energy projects that may hinder their progress and well-being.
    • Germany's decision to rely on renewable energy sources and shut down nuclear plants has backfired, resulting in high energy costs, unreliable power provision, and increased pollution. The country's dependence on Russia for energy and the move of electric car manufacturers to China further complicate the situation. This flawed approach has not only affected Germany but also has global implications. It highlights the importance of adopting more reasonable and effective energy and environmental policies.
    • Prioritizing lower energy costs and reliable energy provision is crucial for improving the lives of the poor and supporting disadvantaged communities, both in developing and developed countries.
    • Access to electricity is essential for empowering women and girls. It enables them to pursue education, employment, and contribute to society, rather than being burdened by household chores. Prioritizing reliable energy sources can enhance their lives and opportunities globally.
    • A balanced and pragmatic approach, based on actual data and available resources, is essential for effective climate change mitigation and transitioning to cleaner energy systems.
    • Embracing nuclear power, particularly through the use of small modular reactors, can help countries reduce emissions, move away from inefficient renewable energy sources, and contribute to a more sustainable energy future.
    • Being prepared and having reliable systems in place, such as food storage and standardized designs, is crucial for ensuring safety, well-being, and energy security in the face of uncertain situations.
    • Developing countries prioritize economic growth and access to electricity over climate concerns due to rapid industrialization and population growth, with dire consequences for vulnerable populations. Prioritizing basic necessities is crucial.
    • Raising energy prices without considering the poor can have devastating consequences. The conversation criticizes the green movement's opposition to natural gas and nuclear energy, emphasizing the importance of affordable energy solutions for vulnerable populations.
    • Investing in natural gas and nuclear power can provide low-cost and accessible alternatives to biomass for underdeveloped countries, aiding in their decarbonization and electrification efforts.
    • Although coal remains a significant source of electricity worldwide, there is a need for investment in advanced technologies to reduce pollution. However, it is essential to consider historical context and global perspectives when addressing climate change and exploring cleaner energy alternatives.
    • Energy density and reliability are important considerations in developing sustainable energy systems, despite the merits of wind and solar power.
    • Wind projects have harmful effects on various aspects, including property values, human health, and wildlife, driven by financial motives rather than genuine environmental concern.
    • Our obsession with renewable energy solutions in the name of climate change has led to the neglect of protecting wildlife and landscapes, and the prioritization of reputation over genuinely solving environmental problems.
    • It is crucial for young people to go beyond symbolic activism and focus on finding real solutions for pressing issues. Prioritizing and addressing actual problems is essential for genuine moral advancements.
    • Prioritizing energy access for struggling individuals can drive societal progress and environmental advancements, but realistic considerations about the limitations of renewable energy and the impact on rural communities are crucial.
    • It is important to critically assess and address engineering challenges, supply chain dependencies, and long-term viability of renewable energy solutions to ensure a sustainable future.
    • Energy policymaking needs to consider long-term thinking, supply chain complexities, and the ethical implications of foreign dependency in order to address vulnerabilities and transition to sustainable technologies effectively.
    • Prioritizing reliability and affordability in the electric grid is crucial to prevent negative impacts on vulnerable populations and ensure essential services are maintained.
    • Accessible and affordable energy is crucial for society's improvement and a future of abundance and reliability.

    📝 Podcast Summary

    The Consequences of Imposing Renewable Energy on Developing Countries

    The push for renewable energy in developing countries can be detrimental to their progress and well-being. In the case of Angola, where 60% of the population lacks electricity, funding a solar project instead of utilizing their abundant natural gas and oil resources is a prime example of green colonialism. This approach imposes climate concerns on countries that should have the freedom to choose the most viable and practical energy sources for their development. It is an act of sacrificing the poor for the sake of an idealistic agenda. The conversation reveals the criminal levels of stupidity in imposing renewable energy on the developing world without considering their immediate needs and resources.

    The Consequences of Germany's Energy and Environmental Policies: Skyrocketing Prices, Unreliable Power, and Increased Pollution.

    Germany's energy and environmental policies have led to disastrous consequences. The country's decision to shut down nuclear plants and rely on renewable energy sources has resulted in skyrocketing energy prices, unreliable power provision, and increased pollution. Germany's dependence on Russia and other totalitarian states for energy provision is a concerning issue. Furthermore, the high energy costs have led to deindustrialization, with electric car manufacturers moving their operations to China. The irony is evident in the fact that Germany is now burning lignite, the dirtiest form of coal, while taking down wind projects. This flawed approach has not only affected Germany but also has knock-on effects in the developing world. The conversation highlights the need for more reasonable and effective energy and environmental policies.

    The Impact of Renewable Energy Mandates on Low-Income Individuals and Access to Affordable Electricity

    Electricity availability is crucial for improving the lives of the poor and driving economic progress. The conversation highlighted how California's renewable energy mandates and high electric prices have disproportionately affected low-income individuals and hindered their access to affordable electricity. It was emphasized that lower energy costs and reliable energy provision should be a top priority, both in the developing world and for the poor in developed countries. The notion that increasing population and wealth automatically lead to environmental destruction was debunked, with evidence showing that as people become wealthier, they become more capable of addressing local environmental issues themselves. Ultimately, the conversation underscored the importance of prioritizing energy access and affordability to support the well-being of disadvantaged communities.

    The Impact of Energy Availability on Women and Girls

    Energy availability, specifically electricity, plays a crucial role in empowering women and girls. Without access to electricity, women and girls are forced to spend their time on household chores like washing clothes by hand, which limits their opportunities for education, employment, and contribution to society. There are currently 2.5 billion women and girls worldwide who wash clothes by hand, inhibiting their ability to utilize their intellectual potential. It is imperative to recognize that climate change is a concern, but it should not be the sole focus. As extreme weather events become more frequent, there is a growing need for reliable energy sources. Relying heavily on weather-dependent renewables in such circumstances is counterintuitive and inefficient. By prioritizing energy realism and availability, we can enhance the lives and opportunities of women and girls worldwide.

    Approaching Climate Change and Energy Policy with Rationality and Practicality

    There is a need to approach climate change and energy policy with a rational and practical mindset. The conversation highlights the historical inaccuracies and shifting narratives surrounding climate predictions, emphasizing the importance of basing policies on actual data rather than fear-driven assumptions. It is essential to focus on finding the best, no-regrets solutions to mitigate risks and reduce emissions. The conversation also emphasizes the potential of natural gas and nuclear energy as viable and abundant resources that can help both developed and developing countries transition to cleaner energy systems. Neglecting these resources, particularly in developing nations, hinders progress and hampers efforts to bring light and development to those in need.  Overall, the key takeaway emphasizes the need for a balanced and pragmatic approach to tackling climate change, considering reliable data and the potential of available resources.

    The Growing Recognition and Optimism Towards Nuclear Power as a Sustainable Energy Solution

    There is a growing recognition and optimism towards nuclear technology as a solution to reducing emissions and moving away from inefficient renewable energy sources. Countries like Canada, China, Romania, Britain, France, and Poland are embracing nuclear power and investing in the development of new reactors. Small modular reactors (SMRs) are seen as a promising technology, with companies like Xer Energy pushing for their deployment. The safety and efficiency of high temperature gas reactors make them an attractive option for industries like chemical production. This shift towards nuclear power is seen as a positive step towards reducing environmental impact and achieving a more sustainable energy future.

    The Importance of Preparedness, Standardized Systems, and Energy Security in Uncertain Situations

    Being prepared for uncertain situations is crucial. Whether it's a natural disaster or unforeseen circumstances, having a reliable food storage system can provide peace of mind and ensure the well-being of you and your loved ones. The conversation also highlights the importance of energy in industrial processes and the need for high temperature heat in various industries. It emphasizes the significance of having standardized designs and regulations in the nuclear energy sector. Additionally, the conversation sheds light on Japan's prioritization of energy security over concerns about climate change, demonstrating the practicality and realism in their approach. Overall, the key takeaway is the importance of preparedness, standardized systems, and energy security in facing various challenges.

    Energy Security and Economic Growth: Balancing Priorities in Developing Countries

    Energy security is a top priority for countries like China, Vietnam, and India, which are experiencing rapid industrialization and significant population growth. These countries are expanding their coal-fired plants and increasing their CO2 emissions to meet their growing energy demands. The conversation emphasizes that economic growth takes precedence over climate concerns, as countries and businesses will do whatever it takes to ensure access to electricity. The speaker also highlights the dire consequences of higher energy costs, such as increased mortality rates for vulnerable populations, like the elderly. It underscores the importance of being realistic about energy needs and recognizing that people will prioritize their basic necessities over climate considerations.

    The Impact of Energy Prices on the Poor: Devastating Consequences and Criticisms of the Green Movement

    Raising energy prices without considering the impact on the poor can have devastating consequences. The conversation highlights the negative effects of high polluting fuels and indoor air pollution on vulnerable populations, such as children and the elderly. The conversation also criticizes the green movement for its opposition to both natural gas and nuclear energy, despite their potential to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. It suggests that this opposition stems from an anti-industrial and anti-human stance, rather than a genuine concern for the environment. Moreover, the conversation emphasizes the importance of hydrocarbons in improving living standards in developing countries, particularly in reducing indoor air pollution. Expensive energy ultimately becomes the enemy of the poor, highlighting the need for affordable and accessible energy solutions.

    The Pathway to Affordable and Sustainable Energy for Global Development

    The cost of energy and the pathway to cleaner and more reliable sources are crucial factors in global development. Expensive energy policies disproportionately affect the poor, making it essential to find affordable and sustainable solutions. The developmental pathway to cleaner energy starts with low-density options such as dung, wood, and coal, gradually moving towards oil, natural gas, and nuclear power. Decarbonization is actively happening in developed countries, while underdeveloped countries still heavily rely on biomass. Leapfrogging to renewables may not be feasible for all regions, especially rapidly urbanizing areas like Africa, where there is an overwhelming need for electricity. Natural gas and nuclear power offer lower carbon alternatives that are well-developed, available, and cost-effective. Supporting countries in building and deploying these energy sources can help in decarbonizing and electrifying impoverished nations.

    The Global Use of Coal and the Search for Cleaner Alternatives

    Coal remains a significant source of electricity globally, with 35% of the global electric sector market. While some countries are investing in advanced technologies like ultra super critical technology to make coal-fired plants cleaner, many countries are still relying on subcritical plants, which are less efficient and produce more pollution. This creates an opportunity for potential subsidies to help countries build better and cleaner coal plants. However, it is important to consider the historical context and global perspective when addressing climate change. The conversation also highlights the need for cleaner and cheaper electricity alternatives like natural gas and nuclear power. Furthermore, the narrative of achieving "net zero" carbon output is being questioned by politicians and voters in Europe, suggesting a shift in perspective towards more realistic and pragmatic solutions.

    The drawbacks of wind power and the limitations of solar power in relation to energy density and reliability.

    Wind power has significant drawbacks in terms of reliability, environmental impact, and power density. The conversation highlights that wind turbines are unreliable and only work when the wind is blowing, which is a problem at night when solar panels also don't work. Additionally, wind turbines have a limited lifespan, are expensive to decommission, and pose risks to marine life and birds. Furthermore, wind power requires vast amounts of land, impacting more people and causing concerns for rural communities. On the other hand, solar power offers slightly better power density but still falls short compared to high-density sources like nuclear power. Overall, while renewables like wind and solar have their merits, the focus on energy density is essential in shaping effective and sustainable energy and power systems.

    Negative impacts of wind projects on property values, human health, and wildlife, driven by financial incentives rather than climate concern.

    Wind projects have negative impacts on property values and human health due to noise pollution and visual blight. The motivation behind deploying these projects is primarily driven by lucrative tax credits, rather than a genuine concern for climate change. The wind industry has been aggressive in pursuing these subsidies, even going so far as suing individuals who oppose their projects. Furthermore, the industry is responsible for the deaths of a significant number of migratory birds, without being held accountable or required to report these fatalities. This double standard in corporate responsibility is evident, as the wind industry receives a free pass compared to the oil and gas industry.

    The Narrow Focus on Climate Change: Neglecting Other Environmental Issues

    There is a shift from caring about the environment to focusing solely on climate change and carbon dioxide. This narrow focus is preventing us from addressing other environmental problems that are equally or even more urgent, such as overfishing and the destruction of coastal shelves in the ocean. The obsession with renewable energy solutions like wind turbines and solar panels in the name of climate change has resulted in the neglect of protecting wildlife and preserving landscapes. This is evident in the lack of concern for endangered species like the North Atlantic right whale, where the development of offshore wind farms is encroaching on their habitat. The conversation highlights the prioritization of reputation and false avenues to reputation enhancement over genuinely solving environmental problems.

    The Pitfalls of Symbolic Activism and the Importance of Addressing Actual Problems

    There is a concerning trend among young people to prioritize symbolic activism over real problem-solving. By engaging in protests and complaints without actually working towards solutions, they believe they are morally virtuous. This pseudo-solution approach not only ignores the real issues at hand but also negatively impacts the poor. Additionally, the conversation highlights the lack of perspective and gratitude among privileged individuals. While they complain about energy sources and climate change, a significant portion of the global population lives in electricity poverty. The focus on climate issues by the current administration is criticized for neglecting other urgent problems like the opioid crisis. It is important to prioritize and address actual problems rather than being consumed by symbolism and presentism. The Alliance for Responsible Citizenship aims to bring clarity to these priorities and promote genuine moral advancements.

    Harnessing Human Potential and Balancing Environmental Concerns

    The focus should be on providing energy to those who are struggling, so they can contribute their brain power to society. By prioritizing this, we can also make advancements in environmental issues, as people become more concerned once they have the means to do so. Instead of viewing the growing population as a problem, we should see it as an opportunity to convert more individuals into productive contributors. However, it is important to be realistic about the limitations of renewable energy sources like wind and solar. While they are renewable in theory, the practical lifespan of solar panels and wind generators is relatively short. This conversation also highlights the disregard for important factors like prime farmland and the negative impact of renewable projects on rural communities.

    The Hidden Complexities and Limitations of Renewable Energy Sources

    Renewable energy sources are not as straightforward as they may seem. While solar and wind power are often touted as renewable, there are hidden complexities and limitations to their sustainability. Large wind turbines, for example, face engineering challenges and stresses that can lead to their destruction. Additionally, the supply chains for alternative energy heavily depend on China, which controls a significant portion of the global market for necessary resources like neodymium, dysprosium, and copper. Relying on Chinese supply chains raises concerns about the United States staking its future economy on a potentially unstable source. It is crucial to consider the practicality and long-term viability of renewable energy solutions to ensure a sustainable future.

    The Need for a Holistic Approach to Energy Policymaking

    There is a lack of long-term thinking and strategic planning when it comes to addressing our vulnerabilities in the energy industry. The discussion highlights the complexity of supply chain problems and the interconnectedness of various energy systems. It raises concerns about the reliance on foreign suppliers, particularly in the alternative energy sector, and the potential ethical issues such as slave labor and environmental costs associated with certain production processes. The conversation also emphasizes the importance of understanding the existing checks and balances within the current energy ecosystem and the challenges of transitioning to new technologies without fully comprehending the intricacies of the supply chains involved. Overall, it calls for a more holistic and thoughtful approach to energy policymaking.

    Balancing the Renewable Energy Agenda: The Importance of Reliability and Affordability in the Electric Grid

    Reliability and affordability are crucial aspects of the electric grid. While there is a strong focus on renewable energy and climate issues, it is important to also prioritize the reliability and affordability of the grid. Affordability is not just about saving a few dollars on energy bills for the reasonably well-off, but rather ensuring that poor people do not suffer and are not pushed into poverty due to increased energy costs. Similarly, reliability means having a consistent power supply that is essential for various aspects of life, such as preserving food and providing critical services like healthcare. Neglecting reliability and affordability can lead to the reliance on alternative energy sources like diesel generators or backups from the "generator mafia," which is not sustainable or ideal.

    The Importance of Affordable and Reliable Electricity for a Sustainable Life

    Reliable electricity is essential for a comfortable and sustainable life. The average Generac buyer, with a higher household income than the US average, understands that affordability and reliability are interconnected. When electricity is unreliable, people resort to buying generators and spending large amounts of money on fuel. Electricity is fundamental to our human existence, enhancing our lives and making us more human. It is a critical form of energy that has greatly impacted humanity throughout history. As humanists, we should strive to bring electricity to more people, especially women and girls who are among the most vulnerable. Accessible and affordable energy is necessary for the betterment of society and a future of abundance and reliability.

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    For Mosab Hassan Yousef:


    On X https://twitter.com/MosabHasanYOSEF?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor


    “Son of Hamas: A Gripping Account of Terror, Betrayal, Political Intrigue, and Unthinkable Choices” (book) https://www.amazon.com/Son-of-Hamas-Mosab-Hassan-Yousef-audiobook/dp/B006PJC4H2/?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_w=PheAV&content-id=amzn1.sym.cf86ec3a-68a6-43e9-8115-04171136930a&pf_rd_p=cf86ec3a-68a6-43e9-8115-04171136930a&pf_rd_r=138-3764402-1287437&pd_rd_wg=fLHUm&pd_rd_r=8445617a-f7bd-45ef-bcff-98e77e6b26f5&ref_=aufs_ap_sc_dsk 

    442. BILL C-63 - Everything You Need to Know | Bruce Pardy & Konstantin Kisin

    442. BILL C-63 - Everything You Need to Know | Bruce Pardy & Konstantin Kisin

    Dr. Jordan B. Peterson sits down in-person with Canadian lawyer Bruce Pardy and podcaster Konstantin Kisin. They discuss Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Bill C-63 (aka The Online Harms Act), what powers it gives to the government, what rights it strips from citizens, and why even Americans should be concerned.

    Bruce Pardy is executive director of Rights Probe, a law and liberty thinktank, and professor of law at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. He is a lawyer, academic, columnist, and outspoken critic of the illiberal managerial state, fighting at the front lines of the culture war inside the law. Bruce writes for the National Post, Epoch Times, and the Brownstone Institute, among others, and serves as senior fellow at the Fraser Institute, the Macdonald-Laurier Institute, and the Frontier Centre for Public Policy. He has taught at law schools in Canada, the United States and New Zealand, practiced civil litigation in Toronto, and served as adjudicator and mediator on the Ontario Environmental Tribunal. The legal ground, Bruce has written, is shifting beneath our feet. The individual is losing to the collective. An ever-expanding bureaucracy regulates life from cradle to grave, including private behavior and speech, in the name of common good. The law has become discretionary, arbitrary, and unequal. The end of Western liberal civilization, as we have known it, is conceivable.

    Konstantin Kisin is a Russian-British satirist, social commentator, and co-host of the TRIGGERnometry Youtube show. He is also the author of “An Immigrant's Love Letter to the West,” a Sunday Times bestseller. He has written for several publications, including Quillette, The Spectator, The Daily Telegraph, and Standpoint, on issues relating to tech censorship, woke culture, comedy, and other topics, but he currently publishes articles on his popular Substack. Kisin made headlines in 2018 when he refused to sign a "safe space contract" to perform comedy at a British college and again in 2023 when he participated in an Oxford Union debate on the motion of "This House Believes Woke Culture Has Gone Too Far." His speech at the debate received viral attention and has been seen by over 100 million people around the world.



    - Links -

    2024 tour details can be found here https://jordanbpeterson.com/events   

    Peterson Academy https://petersonacademy.com/  


    For Bruce Pardy:

    On X https://twitter.com/pardybruce?lang=en

    Rights Probe: https://www.rightsprobe.org/

    For Konstantin Kisin:

    TRIGGERnometry Podcast    / @triggerpod  

    Substack https://konstantinkisin.substack.com/

    Twitter https://twitter.com/KonstantinKisin?r...