America’s adversaries have good reasons to join with the Jolly Green Giant in hearty Ho-Ho-Hos thanks to pea-brained language snuck into the 2007 National Defense Authorization Act by former Senate Arms Service Committee members Hillary Clinton and Republican John Warner from Virginia. The NDAA amendment required the DOD to consider effects of climate change upon all defense priorities and strategies. This prompted the U.S. Navy to launch a “Great Green Fleet” (GGF) program aimed at reducing fossil-fueled carbon emissions by substituting costly algae-based biofuels.
The Navy originally paid up to $400 per gallon for that biofuel buffoonery vs. the $2.82 per gallon going price at the time for petroleum-based marine fuel. Later, owing to a generous combination of federal subsidies plus hundreds of millions of direct taxpayer-funded gifts, the “cost” dropped to twice the price of petroleum-based marine fuel.
Those “advanced” biofuels continue to have large “net energy values,” meaning that they consume hugely more energy during their production-through-consumption lifecycles than the petroleum fuels they displace. As a result, their use actually produces net carbon emissions which are many times higher and at many times the cost than if petroleum fuel is used entirely.
A January 2011 Rand Corporation report submitted to DOD as required by Congress in accordance with a 2009 NDAA found that while some alternative fuels being developed are technically possible, uncertainties exist regarding commercial viability and cost. It also concluded that despite recognized unknowns, algae alternative fuels are primarily a research initiative with limited potential to fill large military requirements.
Nevertheless, the GGF program is inexplicably represented to the public as a military strategy to optimize fleet operations under challenging budget constraints. This follows a series of announcements the president began issuing in 2011 indicating that the U.S. would intensify U.S. Navy presence in the Asia-Pacific theater to counter China’s unlawful occupation of the South China Sea.
The official rationale for this farcical folly holds that climate change is an “accelerant of instability or conflict” that will play a “significant role in shaping the future security environment” and cause a “need to adjust to the impacts of climate change on our facilities and military capabilities.” As Obama stated during his final January 2015 State of the Union Address: “No challenge — no challenge — poses a greater threat to future generations than climate change.” Without elaborating any reason, he added, “The Pentagon says that climate change poses immediate risks to our national security.”
And exactly what climatic national security threats were they so worried about? A big concern highlighted by politically-dutiful security planners was that global warming would melt massive Himalayan glaciers. This would first cause rivers to flood . . . then to dry up once the glaciers retreated, endangering tens of millions of people in lowland Bangladesh. Retired Air Marshal A.K. Singh, a former commander in India’s air force, foresaw this leading to mass migrations across national borders, with militaries (including ours) becoming involved.
This dire Himalayan glacier melting calamity was predicted by a preeminent international climate organization, none other than the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). And after all, who could dare to doubt their competence and veracity?
Well actually, many scientists do, and for very good reasons. In this case, and as IPCC later admitted, the Himalayan prophecy was entirely fabricated with no supporting science in its 2007 "Summary for Policymakers" report by a fellow who worked for IPCC’s director.
Nonetheless, as one not inclined to let a perfectly good manufactured crisis go to waste, Secretary of State John Kerry continues to cite climate change as the “most serious challenge we face on the planet.”
All of this intemperate temperature tomfoolery is tied to the Obama EPA’s Clean Power Plan (CPP) which proposes to reduce petroleum fuel consumption 50 percent by 2030.
According to The New York Times, that target was mandated by Democratic party mega-donor, climate activist billionaire Tom Steyer.
Hillary has pledged, if elected, to raise the bar even higher. Whereas the current CPP would produce 20 percent of our nation’s electricity from renewable sources by 2030, up from 7 percent today, her plan proposes to up the ante to 33 percent by 2027.
Notions of any real, much less cost-effective, climate or security benefits are delusional.
Consider that the $150 billion the Obama administration has spent on “renewable alternative” subsidies added just 2 percent to the 4 percent of total U.S. energy derived from these sources today.
Given that reliable, affordable energy is vital to national security, here’s a different alternative energy proposal. Let’s free up the Navy and the rest of the military from responsibility to protect the planet from natural climate changes so that they can concentrate limited resources on true man-made threats that really matter.
Larry Bell is an endowed professor of space architecture at the University of Houston where he founded the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture (SICSA) and the graduate program in space architecture. He is the author of “Scared Witless: Prophets and Profits of Climate Doom”(2015) and “Climate of Corruption: Politics and Power Behind the Global Warming Hoax” (2012). Read more of his reports — Click Here Now.
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