In case you didn't know, NIMBY stands for “Not In My Back Yard.”
Polluting industries have used this “NIMBY” accusation to marginalize resistance to polluting for years now. But there is a converse attitude that never gets mentioned. The financiers of the polluters appear to find destructive and poisoning behavior perfectly OK as long as the pollution is not in their own overpriced back yards.
I would like to call these OK-NIMBYs.
OK-NIMBYs find it OK that they make money on others' suffering. But don't get me wrong. OK-NIMBYs may not be so much evil as callus (or even ignorant). They invest their money in hedge funds, the stock market, or even their retirement plan with no real idea how the money gets invested. All they want is to maximize their investment.
But what are the real-world consequences of that?
Their back yards get polluted too.
They get poisoned too.
Their future gets compromised too.
That is the inherent fatal flaw of paper profits.
...My story begins in 2006.
That was when a power utility paid $100,000 to a global warming skeptic. Now, this wasn't just any power utility. This was a rural cooperative. Which means the board spent $100,000 of its customers' money to pay an opinionated “scientist” to speak out against global warming science.
Now, your first question might be; what in the world is a rural cooperative paying a scientist for anyway – to do anything? That has nothing to do with their mission. However, many members of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association burn coal. And Intermountain Rural Electric Association General Manager Stanley Lewandowski must have believed so much in the cooperatives' decision to burn coal without pollution “controls” that he wrote a memo to the National Association to convince other rural cooperatives to send money to global warming skeptics also.
(Did more contributions come from other rural electric cooperatives? We don't know yet. If it happened here with Mt. Wheeler Power, no one who would be critical of the act is likely to have checked.)
The “scientist” who was paid (off) was Patrick Michaels, former Virginia State Climatologist – who was drummed out of his position for his controversial industry funding.
Here in lies a paradox. When you think about the thousands of scientists who have contributed tons and tons of evidence for man-made global warming, it seems very peculiar that a dozen or so vocal global warming skeptics should carry so much weight. But there it is, right on mass media news for all of us to see. What they call fair and balanced reporting just happens to weigh greatly in favor of their fossil fuel sponsors. Ain't that a coincidence? NOT!!!
So, after five years of do nothing politics on global warming, I'm looking out my window here in the mountains of Eastern Nevada. It's new year's eve day, and there isn't any snow. In fact, it's quite warm for the middle of the Winter in the mountains. If there were snow, it probably would have melted. WHERE'S WINTER???
...But that's just the tip of the iceberg.
Russian science vessels have located huge fountains of methane evaporating from the oceanfloor. “We found more than 100 fountains, some more than a kilometer across... there should be thousands of them.” Said Dr. Igor Semiletov. (In case you didn't know; methane is 30 times more powerful a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide.)
Can you say “tipping point”?
(In case you didn't know what “tipping point” means; that is the point in time where there is no turning back. In the case of global warming; it is when, even if we totally stopped emitting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, the Earth would continue to get hotter.)
This isn't just evidence.
This is proof!
Methane is melting in mass amounts!
We're already at the point of no return.
We can believe the scientists, or we can believe the sell-outs.
If he's still getting paid, I'd bet our Cato Institute “scientist” would still be claiming that either there is no global warming, global warming is not caused by human activity, we are not near any tipping point, or “sorry, it looks like we're past the tipping point – there's nothing we can do about it now. You may as well buy more fossil fuels.”
This is exasperating! Air temperatures near the poles have increased by about 4° F! Water temperatures are higher too. The polar ice caps are melting! And the only people excited about this are the oil companies!
Oh, and one more thing. If you have read my blog before, you may recall a post where I suggested that some of the recent earthquake activity may have been caused by global warming. Well, more evidence is in. Read here.
So, with all this bad news, one would expect that we might see some changes... Nope.
The big issue at the end of the year wasn't extending the renewable energy rebate. No, it was extending unemployment benefits. That was important, of course. But in the long run, it's going to look like re-arranging deck chairs on the Titanic. Without an environment to support us, no government can keep extending unemployment benefits indefinitely.
The very best America (and the world) can hope for won't happen until year after next. If the Democrats (or some Party even more enlightened) win many new seats – and take over the House, maybe – just maybe; we can get a comprehensive Energy Bill Passed.
But don't expect that to be the end of it.
Even though we've had another big oil spill...
Even though closer analysis shows that that big American natural gas strike is all on paper – and the supply most likely won't last anywhere near 100 years (more likely 10 to 20 years)...
Even though The Daily Show gets more viewers than Fox “News” now...
Even though most Americans want clean energy, and are willing to pay for it...
...The exploiters have been able to keep this in court for years.
A Federal Judge just blocked one of California's greenhouse gas emission regulations. The regulation was written to force producers and refiners to reduce their fuel's carbon footprint by 10 percent by 2020. Though the law would have only reduced California's greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels, it would have been a major step in the right direction.
And another Federal Court just delayed an EPA rule on coal-fired power plants. These rules were originally mandated by a bipartisan Clean Air Act in 1990! It's been over 20 years, and it's still in court. Amazing! ...Amazingly stupid. This EPA rule would limit emissions of mercury, arsenic, and other poisons. In fact, the EPA claims that 11,000 Americans might not die every year if the rules were adhered to. This isn't about doing what is right. It's about holding the door shut until they've taken everything – and left us with the mess to clean up.
And have we learned our lesson?
With all of the damage that has already been caused by global warming, which has been documented by the insurance industry; we still hear people claiming that the answer to our problems is to drill for more oil.
This is the biggest conspiracy in the history of humanity.
It is so big that it permeates our entire information system.
For, example; the Discovery Channel is airing a seven part documentary with only one of the parts missing – the issue on global warming.
...Of course, this happens every day on the mass media news channels.
The OK-NIMBYs are getting their way. And if we really are about to run out of fossil fuels, they're about to make a killing... on us. Which means we will be double-over-charged. We will have to pay the over-inflated prices of diminishing fossil fuels (and the peculiar rate increases such as Nevada Energy's recent 10% rate hike). And much worse, we will have to pay the huge environmental consequences of burning fossil fuels.
We know better.
It's not OK.
Even if it's not in my back yard.