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The Dirty Secret Behind “Clean Energy”

Renewable energy advocates often talk about wind and solar as "clean" energy resources, and talk about "dirty" fossil fuels, but how accurate is their assessment that renewables are actually clean? Not very. We've talked about the fact that wind solar, and batteries require massive amounts of copper, nickel, rare earth metals, lead, cadmium, and cobalt. Many times, these materials are mined in countries where there are few, if any, protections for the environment or workers. The Clear Energy Alliance has produced a very good video debunking the claims that fossil fuels are inherently dirty, and video shines a much-needed light on the...

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Minnesota’s Third-Largest Wind Farm is Already Losing Steam: Output Falls 14 percent from 2014 Highs

According the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, wind turbines have operational lifetimes of 20 years, but it appears Xcel Energy's Nobles wind project, the third-largest wind farm in Minnesota, is losing steam after just eight. The graph below was produced using data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration plant-level data. It shows the electricity generation of the Nobles wind project, which became operational in 2010, through 2018. You'll notice that electricity generation peaked in 2014, and that generation was about 14 percent lower in 2018, compared to the 2014 production levels. It is important to take note of this decline in electricity production...

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Even U.S. Senate Democrats Aren’t Crazy Enough to Vote For the Green New Deal

Yesterday the U.S. Senate held a vote on the much discussed Green New Deal (GND). Interestingly, the non-binding resolution on the GND failed to get a even single vote, being defeated 0-57, despite the fact that several candidates vying for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination are sitting senators who have voiced public support for the resolution. These senators include Corey Booker, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Amy Klobuchar. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was quick to pounce on the results, releasing the video below: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1j_Djv4Q74Q&feature=youtu.be Will Governor Walz get the message and pare back his own plan for a disastrous Green New Deal...

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House Energy and Climate Finance and Policy Division Drops 78-Page, Energy-Illiterate Omnibus Bill

Democrats on the Minnesota House of Representatives Energy and Climate Finance and Policy Division Committee have dropped a 78-page omnibus bill that is chalk full of energy-illiterate language. I've summarized some of the items in the omnibus below. Governor Walz' Energy Illiterate Green New Deal Different legislation, same bad policy. This legislation would require Minnesota’s electricity sector to be 100 percent free of carbon dioxide emissions by 2050. However, just like earlier versions, this bill does not allow for new nuclear power, allow large hydro to count toward the mandate, or allow for carbon capture and sequestration. As such, this policy would cause massive...

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In The Tank (ep183) – Robert Bryce, Juice the Movie, Modern Monetary Theory, and State Nullification

Heartland’s Donald Kendal, and Justin Haskins are joined by Isaac Orr, Policy Fellow at the Center of the American Experiment, in episode #183 of the In The Tank Podcast. This weekly podcast features (as always) interviews, debates, and roundtable discussions that explore the work of think tanks across the country. The show is available for download as part of the Heartland Daily Podcast every Friday. Today’s episode features work from the Manhattan Institute, the Mises Institute, and the Foundation for Economic Education. In the first segment, Donny is joined by Robert Bryce, senior fellow from the Manhattan Institute. Robert joins the show to talk about his...

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Doubling Down on Failure Installment 1: Comparing the Costs of Wind and Solar, Nuclear, and Coal

As you probably know by now, American Experiment has released a new study entitled Doubling Down on Failure, How a 50 percent by 2030 Renewable Energy Standard Would Cost Minnesota $80.2 Billion.   The study is more than 80 pages, including appendices and citations, so I will be breaking down the key findings in more manageable bites on the website. Today, I'll break down the four main energy scenarios we examined and why we chose them....

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Statewide View: Skyrocketing Electricity Prices Threaten Minnesota Mining

Renewable-energy advocates often cite increasing demand for steel, copper, nickel, and cobalt as a reason why Minnesotans on the Iron Range should support more renewable-energy mandates. There is no doubt that doubling the renewable-energy mandate would increase Minnesota's demand for these metals, but we won't be able to afford to mine them here....

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