My son and I often have dinner together and watch FNC’s “The Five.”
This week, one discussion that caught my attention was the response to panelist Juan Williams’ assertion that the Republicans do not have any response to climate change. When fellow pundit Greg Gutfeld responded, “Gen. IV Nuclear,” Williams went on as if he never heard the remark.
It was an utterly fascinating moment of cognitive dissonance.
One of President Donald Trump’s greatest strengths is that he is no ideologue. While Trump may not want to send the United Nations billions in “green energy dollars,” the business tycoon has enough sense to look for innovative solutions to the “climate change” hysteria that millions of voters are clamoring about.
He simply wants those solutions to actually help the American economy instead of hinder it, and Republicans are proceeding along Trump-inspired lines.
While they are not buying the “climate change” hyperbole, the GOP is selling the idea that science and technology may offer some interesting profit opportunities that pair nicely with a cleaner environment.
Whereas Democratic plans focus on government regulation of the oil and gas industries, Republican plans tend to center on technological innovations to combat global warming. Representative Matt Gaetz (R-Florida) called his plan, which focuses on solutions like investment in carbon-capture technology, the “Green Real Deal.” Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tennessee) has called for a “new Manhattan Project” for clean energy, proposing large-scale investment in carbon capture, electric vehicles, and green buildings. Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas) has said he would support legislation to combat climate change with “energy innovation.”
Indeed, innovation is a recurring theme so far in Republicans’ approaches to climate policy. The conservative lawmakers know their audience: Different types of messaging on climate change are more convincing for conservatives than those that typically appeal to left-leaning voters. Research shows that messaging that focuses on the overwhelming consensus among climate scientists doesn’t persuade conservatives to back climate action, but focusing on free-market solutions to climate change does.
Legal Insurrection readers may recall that one of the plans put forward in the “new Manhattan Project” was development of “Walk-Away-Safe” Generation IV nuclear power. Investing in new and enhanced nuclear energy technologies may be shrewd move.
Washington state is likely to become the fourth in the nation to legislate 100% renewable energy deadlines.
The Washington State Senate approved and sent to Governor Jay Inslee a 100% clean-power bill that forms the cornerstone of the governor’s efforts to address climate change and his 2020 presidential election campaign.
The Senate, in a 29-20 vote, approved Senate Bill 5116 to require all electric utilities to eliminate coal-fired electricity by December 31, 2025, and to make all of their retail electricity sales free of greenhouse gas emissions by January 1, 2030.
The state only has one existing coal-fired plant, but utilities still import coal-fired power from other states.
Once signed by Inslee, the new measure will make Washington the fourth state, behind California, Hawaii and New Mexico, to pass legislation mandating 100% emissions-free power.
Another innovation that is on the horizon that could massively impact the fiscal climate of this country is the recent development of chemical desalination technologies, which are more effective and cost efficient than traditional methods.
A group of researchers from Columbia University have developed a process designed to purify industrial hypersaline brines. They call it Temperature Swing Solvent Extraction (TSSE).
TSSE can desalinate extremely salty brine up to seven times as salty as the ocean. For comparison, the current methods can only handle brine twice as salty. Unlike other approaches that use reverse osmosis or distillation, TSSE has found success with using a solvent. Solvent extraction is commonly used during chemical engineering.
“I thought solvent extraction could be a good alternative desalination approach that is radically different from conventional methods because it is membrane-less and not based on evaporative phase-change,” says Ngai Yin Yip, assistant professor of earth and environmental engineering at Columbia, in a press statement. “Our results show that TSSE could be a disruptive technology—it’s effective, efficient, scalable, and can be sustainably powered.”
The ability for humans to convert ocean water to potable water could solve countless problems across the globe, such as droughts and limited drinking water. The water could be used to irrigate farmlands, as well as expand forest and wetlands. Finally, the “climate change” alarmists will be consoled that it even offers the opportunity to lower ocean levels.
Hopefully, the Democrats will continue to focus on the Kabuki Theater production that is the Mueller report and not notice all the deregulation and effective policy approaches being spearheaded by President Trump. I am looking forward to another night of drinking liberal tears in November 2020.