Danielle Smith vs. Climate Industrial Complex

With the election of Premier Danielle Smith and the United Conservative Party to another four years in Alberta, one might be tempted to think the rabid push for renewable energies will slow down. Smith, after all, is decidedly in the mood for a fight against Trudeau’s Liberals who are pushing to cut “climate-warming” carbon emissions 40-45% by 2030 and “net zero” emissions in the country by 2050.

Hopefully the prime minister and his caucus are watching tonight. As Premier, I cannot under any circumstances allow these contemplated federal policies to be inflicted upon Albertans.

Premier Danielle Smith, acceptance speech, May 29, 2023; reuters.com

These caps, said Smith, will not only massively increase energy bills but “will result in tens of thousands of jobs lost, tens of billions in lost investment, damage our province’s fiscal position and bring economic hardship to Albertans.”1

Premiere Danielle Smith
Acceptance speech, Calgary, AB
May 29, 2023 (Global News feed)

But the Premier will be under immense pressure from all sides, particularly the media who, with unabashed bias, are cooperating with climate ideologists and energy corporations driving the panicked transition to “green energy.” As we have repeatedly demonstrated here on Wind Concerns, “green” does not mean environmentally friendly and the “facts” surrounding the entire anthropogenic global warming claim are increasingly being shredded by climatologists around the globe.2 Nonetheless, the shrill warnings of the “father of global warming”, James Hansen — who said in 2018 that we had five years to stop using fossil fuels — are carrying the day.3 Or activist Greta Thunberg, who warned in 2018:

Never mind that “Arctic summer temperatures have been not at all different from the 44-year average and that summer sea ice is above decadal averages” and hasn’t declined in over a decade.4 Or that Polar Bear numbers are increasing according to Canadian Geographic, not in dramatic decline as the public has repeatedly been led to believe.5 Or that an Italian review of extreme weather says there is ‘no evidence’ of ‘climate crisis’ in current data, according to their paper. Or that 1,100 researchers recently signed a declaration stating that there is ‘no climate emergency.’ Or that a recently published poll of top-level climate scientists found that 41% do not believe in catastrophic ‘climate change’, contrary to Facebook’s “fact-check” banner claiming a 97-99% consensus among scientists. Alas, I digress.

Chris Severson-Baker, executive director of the national think-tank Pembina Institute, wasted no time firing off a press release to the newly elected Alberta government calling for a plan “introducing regulations to substantially reduce emissions from the oilsands sector and reducing methane emissions 75 to 80 per cent by 2030.”6 Clearly, this is only possible if one were to transform enormous tracts of Alberta farmland into a veritable junkyard of wind turbines and solar panels. And they know that, of course. The Principal of Elemental Energy, a wind and solar energy company, is Jamie Houssian, who is also on the Board of Directors of the Pembina Institute.7

But is it even possible to achieve “net-zero” emissions doing so?

Net-Zero Fantasy?

Donn Dears is a retired engineer and senior executive of General Electric Co. and a member of the CO2 Coalition , and author of Net-Zero Carbon: The Climate Policy Destroying America. Below are his calculations of the amounts of new capacity for each power source that must be installed over the next 28 years for any one of them to achieve net-zero carbon.

  • 995,141 new wind turbines rated at 2.5 megawatts (MW), or 35,551 units annually
  • 881 new nuclear plants, or 31 annually 
  • 3,918,996 MW of new PV (photovoltaic solar panels), or 139,954 MW annually  

Compare this to the most capacity installed in one year since 2000 for each power generation method:

  • 5,680 wind turbines rated 2.5 MW 
  • 1 nuclear plant  
  • 21,500 MW of PV 

Citing other technologies to remove carbon from the atmosphere and their inherent problems, Dears concludes:

The net of net-zero is that it is a goal grandly titled but grounded in little reality. Besides, its premise that carbon dioxide is a pollutant ignores the gas’s overarching quality as a plant food necessary for life. Attempting to achieve the impossible goal of net-zero carbon will wreak havoc on the U.S. economy and harm everyone. Now is the time to abandon net-zero and stop the war on fossil fuels.

June 20, 2022, Washington Examiner

That’s not the only problem. It would also require massive amounts of fossil fuels to create wind turbines and solar panels, not to mention the need for copper:

There’s no way we can supply the amount of copper in the next 10 years to drive the energy transition and carbon zero. It’s not going to happen. There’s just not enough copper deposits being found or developed.

Doug Kirwin, independent consulting geologist, May 2, 2023, bloomberg.com

Robert Murphy, Senior Fellow of the Fraser Institute, states plainly that Trudeau’s “actual climate policies are based on fairy tales.”

What then should we make of the extremely ambitious goal of net-zero emissions by 2050? The new regulations, forcing individual projects to explain how they will meet such an infeasible goal, are merely forcing private-sector promoters to adopt the fairy tales promulgated by federal officials.

September 20, 2020; fraserinstitute.org

In 2015, the Journal of Sustainable Development was already warning:

The emphasis on a false climate crisis is becoming a tragedy for modern civilization, which depends on reliable, economic, and environmentally viable energy. The windmills, solar panels and backup batteries have none of these qualities. This falsehood is pushed by a powerful lobby, which Bjorn Lomborg has called a climate industrial complex, comprising some scientists, most media, industrialists, and legislators. It has somehow managed to convince many that CO2 in the atmosphere, a gas necessary for life on earth, one which we exhale with every breath, is an environmental poison. Multiple scientific theories and measurements show that there is no climate crisis. Radiation forcing calculations by both skeptics and believers show that the carbon dioxide radiation forcing is about 0.3% of the incident radiation, far less than other effects on climate. Over the period of human civilization, the temperature has oscillated between quite a few warm and cold periods, with many of the warm periods being warmer than today. During geological times, it and the carbon dioxide level have been all over the place with no correlation between them.

February 2015, ccsenet.org

Premiere Danielle Smith has already stated that the radical idea to replace reliable fossil fuel energy with unreliable and erratic wind or solar power is “magical thinking.”8 The question is whether she can overcome the spell of indoctrination over the public who are told around the clock that the world is about to end if we don’t crush traditional energy sources and eliminate cow farts.

Stay tuned…

  1. globalnews.ca[]
  2. cf. Hot Air — Behind the Wind[]
  3. cf. gritpost.com, Feb. 2018[]
  4. Vijay Jayaraj, a research associate at the CO2 Coalition; see here and here and here[]
  5. see also “The Myth That the Polar Bear Population Is Declining[]
  6. Media release, May 30, 2023[]
  7. cf. pembina.org[]
  8. October 29, 2021, calgaryherald.com[]
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Mark Mallett is a former award-winning reporter with CTV Edmonton and an independent researcher and author. His family homesteaded between Vermilion and Cold Lake, Alberta, and now resides in the Lakeland region. Mark is Editor in Chief of Wind Concerns.

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