December 13, 2011

Next environmental battle is insanely stupid

The waning global warming battle isn't over yet, but being on the verge of defeat spurs the next battle front for environmentalists.  Consider where the battles have been already - Malthusian crisis mentality, DDT banning, global cooling, nuclear weapons, nuclear power, the ozone, and then global warming, later known as climate change.  That's a lot of disparate ground being covered. Where it is ending up is no offshore drilling, no onshore drilling, no nuclear power development, no coal development and money flowing to the Middle East and soon Brazil for the oil the country needs but won't drill for itself - or even import from Canada.  Not to mention investment in big winners like Solyndra.


But that's not the end of it.  The environmental movement won't be satisfied until there is no power left in the United States.

What a Difference a century makes. A hundred years ago in the United States, damming mighty rivers to create clean, reliable electricity was seen as an innovative way to harness nature’s power, create jobs, and build communities.

Except that somebody forgot to tell the fish. Dams present nonnegotiable obstacles for salmon, steelhead, alewives, and other anadromous species that swim upstream to their spawning grounds. Though some newer, larger projects have fish elevators or ladders to alleviate the problem, the U.S. still has thousands of small dams that don’t. The victims include not just the fish but eagles, ospreys, otters, bears, and other animals above them in the food chain.

In the past decade, however, there’s been a monumental shift. From the Kennebec to the Clark Fork to the Rogue to the Rappahannock, dams are coming down. The result is a windfall not only for fish and their predators but also for anglers, kayakers, rafters, hikers, and mountain bikers.

Serena McClain, a director at the nonprofit conservancy American Rivers, estimates that the number of dams removed annually has increased from 28 in 2000 to more than 50 now. The organization has declared 2011 the “Year of the River” in honor of the unprecedented numbers and scope of dam elimination projects. This fall, McClain says, the United States will likely witness its 1,000th dam removal.

Environmentalists needn’t worry about the loss of green energy. The overwhelming majority of dams already removed or targeted for razing delivered minuscule amounts of power; many are small dams once used to power mills that are no longer in existence.
Oh.  Well that's a relief.  We are only slightly reducing the nations power supply.  You know the census keeps showing more people, so more power is probably necessary.  I'm just spit-balling here but I'd be willing to bet on it.  But less power is a small price to pay for fish, and cool kayaking opportunities.  Never mind that many kayaks are made from oil-based plastics. Just the idea of kayaking is apparently green enough.

Seriously, 1000 dams destroyed?  How about upgraded dams?  How about improving the existing dams?  That's not an option because the real purpose is to have everyone fishing out of birch bark canoes with fishing line that isn't made out of nylon and using solar powered night lights and wind powered heaters while singing Kumbaya.  

For the record, while I'm all for respecting the environment, I'm not down with that.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Share This