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Today is Going to Be a Scorcher. What Energy Source Will Power Your Air Conditioner? (Hint, It Isn’t Wind)

Today is going to be a scorcher in Minnesota, with high humidity pushing the heat index above 100 degrees in many parts of the state. The National Weather Service is advising people to drink plenty of fluids, stay in an air-conditioned room and out of the sun, and check up on relatives and neighbors. While you’re checking on your neighbors, you may also want to check here to learn about where the electricity powering your air conditioning will be coming from today. Here’s a hint: It probably isn’t from the wind....

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Minnesota Plans to Retire 1,829 MW of Coal and Replace it with 7,200 MW of Wind, Solar, and Gas

There may not be a better way to demonstrate how expensive and ineffective Minnesota's energy policies are than to point out that utility companies plan on retiring approximately 1,800 megawatts (MW) of coal-fired power plants and replacing this capacity with 7,200 MW of wind, solar, and natural gas.  In other words, utility companies believe they will need to build four times as much electricity generating capacity to replace the coal plants they are retiring. This will be incredibly expensive....

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Norman Rogers: “Wind and Solar Are Dumb Electricity”

We are constantly treated to disinformation claiming that wind or solar is competitive with fossil fuels. How is it competitive when it can’t replace fossil fuels, but only serves as a supplemental source of power that reduces fuel consumption in the fossil-fuel plants? Since it costs far more to reduce the fuel consumed than it is worth, wind and solar make absolutely no sense. ...

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Strib Article: The trouble with recycling: It’s a plastic paradox

The Strib ran a fascinating piece about recycling today. The article, pasted below, describes how the big blue bins we throw our recyclables into have become a problem. However, the article misses one of the biggest problems recycling faces: people don't have much reason to care about it. Sure, we all want to do what is best for the environment, but very few people are willing to learn how to properly recycle. Additionally, the business model for recycling doesn't make sense because normal people don't really have anything to gain from recycling other than warm fuzzy feelings. This results in a situation...

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Enjoy Your Fossil-Fueled 4th of July!

It's almost America's birthday, so make sure to celebrate in style and enjoy time with your friends and family. But as you celebrate, you may want to pay attention to the role fossil fuels play in your ability to enjoy the holiday. As you can see, coal, natural gas, and oil comprise the vast majority of all the energy consumed in Minnesota. This means your radios, air conditioners, and lawnmowers are probably all powered by fossil fuels. Your hamburgers may be cooked on a gas grill, or you may use oil-derived lighter fluid to start the charcoal. If you use an electric...

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