Feeling like you’re doing the right thing doesn’t mean you are. For years, I felt like I was protecting the environment. I was wrong! But I couldn’t admit it. My sense of identity was tied to false beliefs about energy–myths that blinded me to what *does* help the planet:
🧵👇
2/ MYTH: Solar & wind power are the best ways to lower greenhouse gas emissions.

Fact: The biggest emissions reductions over the last 15 yrs have been due to shifts from coal to natural gas.

Natural gas produces only 10% of the air pollutants & 50% the CO2 that coal does.
3/ MYTH: The world is transitioning to solar, wind & batteries.

Fact A: Solar & wind produce only <3% of global energy, after $2.7 TRILLION invested over the last decade.

Fact B: Solar, wind & batteries over-consume minerals & land, & are too unreliable & expensive at scale.
4/ MYTH: Solar farms reduce household utility bills.

Fact: Households pay more for electricity where governments mandate solar power:

In the US: 11% more in the 29 states with solar mandates.

In CA: 80% more than the US avg.

In Germany: electric bills have doubled.
5/ MYTH: Nuclear power is dangerous.

Fact: Nuclear is the safest, most powerful & reliable way to generate low-emission electricity.

Only ~200 people have died as a result of nuclear energy in 60+ yrs. This number includes the Chernobyl, 3 Mile Island and Fukushima accidents.
6/

Fact: EVEN IF you count the cancer diagnoses among people exposed to radiation, the harm from nuclear plant accidents remains minuscule, in contrast with the *millions* who die every year from the effects of air pollution from coal.
7/ MYTH: Nuclear waste is a big problem.

Fact: Nuclear is the only energy source that prevents waste from going into the environment.

All the nuclear fuel ever generated in the US is safely contained & can fit on a single football field stacked less than 10 yards high.
8/ Fact: Used nuclear fuel is not strictly “waste” because it can be recycled to make new fuel and byproducts in the future.

More than 90% of its potential energy still remains in the fuel, even after five years of operating in a reactor.

energy.gov/ne/articles/5-…
9/ MYTH: Electric vehicles (EV) reduce CO2 emissions.

Fact: EVs shift emissions from the tailpipe to the power plant. If the power source is dirty, so is the EV.

50%+ of new EV sales are expected in China where plants are mostly fueled by coal.

techcrunch.com/2021/08/22/the…
10/ MYTH: Climate risk is the biggest threat to developing countries.

Fact: Energy poverty is a bigger threat & causes 10M premature deaths per year. 2B ppl worldwide only get enough electricity to power a refrigerator. 1B have none & use wood or dung for cooking & heating.
11/ Fact: Reducing energy poverty & fueling economic growth have reduced deaths from natural disasters 95% in the past 100 years while promoting better healthcare, education & economic opportunity.
12/ MYTH: Countries honor their climate pledges.

Fact: Energy security takes precedence over environmental pledges.

Example: Japan plans to increase reliance on oil and gas from 34.7% in 2019 to more than 60% in 2040.

bloomberg.com/news/articles/…
13/ MYTH: Fossil fuels are running out.

Fact: Oil & natural gas reserves keep growing.

eia.gov/naturalgas/cru…
14/ Another fact: We’ll likely stop burning fossil fuels before we ever run out.

Oceanic methane hydrates could potentially supply the world with more than 1 million exajoules of energy, equivalent to 1,000s of years of current global energy demand.

foreignpolicy.com/2020/01/09/fra…
15/ MYTH: More energy consumption is bad.

Fact: More energy consumption improves human flourishing & the environment.

Energy improves:

Lifespan
Health & nutrition
Literacy
Climate risk
Water quality & sanitation
Habitat preservation
Pollution
Gender inequality
16/ These myths distorted my view of the facts. I believed I was acting morally & protecting the well-being of people & the planet, but I was really harming both.

My ignorance prevented me from making a real difference, and I see other people making the same mistakes today.
17/ These myths are now driving bad investments & policy decisions.

Days & dollars spent on them cause harm & suffering to the poorest among us–a high cost for false moral comfort.

Let’s build an energy system that maximizes human flourishing & minimizes environmental harm.
18/ What We Need To Do:

End subsidies and incentives for solar & wind

Retire the dirtiest coal power plants

Build new efficient natural gas power plants (and hydro and geothermal where possible)

Reform regulations & build nuclear power plants

Invest in energy R&D

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh
 

Keep Current with Brian Gitt

Brian Gitt Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!

PDF

Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @BrianGitt

15 Dec 21
Solar power harms both the environment & people—especially people with lower incomes.

I say this as someone who championed solar for over two decades. I thought I was helping to protect the environment, but I was wrong.

Some more reasoning behind this picture 🧵👇
2/ Evaluating the environmental and social impact of solar panels requires weighing the costs and benefits, & accounting for all the social & environmental costs of mining, manufacturing, installing, operating, and disposing of the solar panels.
3/ Solar panels are manufactured using minerals, toxic chemicals, and fossil fuels. In fact, solar panels require 10 times the minerals to deliver the same quantity of energy as a natural gas plant. Quartz, copper, silver, zinc, aluminum, and other rare earth minerals are mined.
Read 21 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!


This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal

Or Donate anonymously using crypto!

Ethereum

0xfe58350B80634f60Fa6Dc149a72b4DFbc17D341E copy

Bitcoin

3ATGMxNzCUFzxpMCHL5sWSt4DVtS8UqXpi copy

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!

:(