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Good News on Polymet! Minnesota Court of Appeals Rules Environmental Groups Can’t Move the Goalposts

There is good news on the Minnesota mining front, as the Minnesota Court of Appeals has rejected a challenge by anti-mining groups seeking to invalidate Minnesota's rules for non-ferrous mining. This is a big deal, because anti-mining groups, including the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy, were trying to overturn the entire regulatory framework for how Minnesota's Department of Natural Resources evaluates and regulates mines that produce copper, nickel, platinum, cobalt, and other metals we depend upon every single day. Had this challenge succeeded, it would have been a massive blow to Minnesota's economic future, and a loss for the environment, as well. Minnesota...

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Californians Learning That Solar Panels Don’t Work in Blackouts

We are often told that installing solar panels on our homes can be a great way to ensure that the lights stay on in the event of a blackout, but it turns out that this claim is misleading. According to an article in Bloomberg: "Californians have embraced rooftop solar panels more than anyone in the U.S., but many are learning the hard way the systems won’t keep the lights on during blackouts. That’s because most panels are designed to supply power to the grid -- not directly to houses. During the heat of the day, solar systems can crank out more juice than a...

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Let Them Use Solar: California Power Outages Highlight Economic Disparity

Despite being governed by progressives for most of the last five decades, California has the fourth-highest degree of wealth inequality in the country, and this wealth inequality is on full display as more than 2.5 million people were plunged into darkness as a result of Pacific Gas and Electric shutting off the power to prevent wildfires. Wealthy Californians are more likely to have solar panels and battery storage at their houses than low-income families, and as a result, these families are more likely to have electricity during the blackouts because low-income families cannot afford to buy back-up generators to keep their...

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WindFail: Congestion on Transmission Lines Hinders New North Dakota Wind Farms

A recent story in the Bismark Tribune states that wind developers in North Dakota are thinking twice about building new industrial wind facilities in the state because there is no room on the transmission lines needed to transport the power to population centers like the Twin Cities. Wind and solar are often built further away from the areas that use the electricity, requiring a massive investment in transmission lines that routinely cost $1 million per mile. The cost of transmission is growing even more as many wind companies seek to build wind turbines in North Dakota and South Dakota, rather than Minnesota,...

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Long Island Liberals Wake Up to How Green Extremism Hurts Constituents

Renewable energy groups like Fresh Energy are encouraging the City of Minneapolis to follow the precedent set by the City of Berkeley in California by banning natural gas in new construction within the City to limit carbon dioxide emissions. This would be an incredibly bad idea, as liberal State Senators in New York, which has banned fracking for natural gas and opposed natural gas pipelines, are now finding out. It appears reality is crashing down on liberal elected officials in the Empire state, where the natural gas shortages they caused are threatening public safety and the state's economic growth. According to...

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California Forced to Subsidize Natural Gas Plants to Prevent Widespread Blackouts

Wind and solar are often touted as a way of reducing our electricity bills, and our dependence on fossil fuels like coal and natural gas. However, the experience of California shows that these talking points are flat out wrong. There is no question that California has some of the most aggressive mandates for renewable energy production in the country. The state recently adopted a 100 percent "clean" energy mandate b 2045, with 60 percent of the state's electricity coming from renewable energy by 2030. A new law requires all new houses built in the Golden State to have solar panels on...

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Washington Post Poll Shows Most People Unwilling to Pay $2 Per Month Tax to Fight Climate Change

While the climate strike and Greta Thunberg may have the limelight this week, the unwavering truth of climate and energy policy remains: people are unwilling to pay the costs associated with reducing carbon dioxide emissions. A recent poll from the Washington Post-Kaiser Family Foundation shows that support for reducing carbon dioxide emissions withers under the slightest bit of scrutiny. The poll shows people favor taxing the wealthy to pay for increasing electricity costs, which is pretty much par for the course on every issue, and raising taxes on energy, even if that leads to higher prices. However, when people are asked to...

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Sunday Funnies: Cobalt Mining in the Congo for Renewable Energy Sources

There's more than a twinge of hypocrisy among liberal environmentalists that want to stop responsible mining for copper, nickel, and cobalt in Minnesota at all costs, yet demand that the state transition to 100 percent carbon free electricity without nuclear or large hydro. Wind and solar power use enormous amounts of copper and nickel and Minnesota has the largest undeveloped reserves of these metals in the world. It's our responsibility to mine them responsibly, not to export environmental damage, and our conscience, to developing countries.  ...

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Renewables Threaten German Economy & Energy Supply, McKinsey Warns In New Report

Lt. Governor Peggy Flanagan and other lawmakers recently traveled to Germany to supposedly learn about Germany's "Energy Transition," and bring home useful lessons that can be gleaned for Minnesota's energy future. From what I can tell, they group didn't get their money's worth, because almost all of the media covering Germany's attempt to close their nuclear plants and rely on wind and solar are saying that the policy is a disaster. It's not just people who work at think tanks, either. In fact, consulting giant Wood McKinsey wrote that Germany's energy policy poses a signficatn threat to the nation's economy and energy...

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