Why energy efficiency and renewable energy are silly policies

One graph says it all.

From the Obama Department of Energy:

The Extended Policies case, released today as part of EIA's Annual Energy Outlook 2013 (AEO2013), shows that extending certain federal energy efficiency and renewable energy laws and regulations could reduce annual energy-related carbon dioxide emissions in the United States in 2040 by roughly 6% relative to a Reference case projection that generally assumes current laws and policies. Between 2013 and 2040, this reduction adds up to a cumulative emission savings approaching five billion metric tons.
The Extended Policies case, released today as part of EIA’s Annual Energy Outlook 2013 (AEO2013), shows that extending certain federal energy efficiency and renewable energy laws and regulations could reduce annual energy-related carbon dioxide emissions in the United States in 2040 by roughly 6% relative to a Reference case projection that generally assumes current laws and policies. Between 2013 and 2040, this reduction adds up to a cumulative emission savings approaching five billion metric tons.

5 thoughts on “Why energy efficiency and renewable energy are silly policies”

  1. CO2 as a reason for policy is just foolishness.
    Pollution is a real reason to drive policy, but it has to be a reasonable policy. Burning less gasoline produces less real pollution but it may also be associated with a general falling off of economic activity, which has its own set of harms.
    Cost-savings can be a real reason for pursuing energy efficiency, but it has to be real energy efficiency. Using a hybrid to buzz five miles to work, then home, once each day — that’s penny-wise and pound-foolish by a wide stripe. I’d have thought hybrids would make sense for taxis and other urban high-use vehicles, but apparently I’m mistaken because urban fleets haven’t gone that route.
    Government programs for energy efficiency and renewables don’t make sense. Real market choices for good resource use do make sense.

  2. People are wising up, had a look at the comments on the Guardian where I am now banned! only ever pointed them to articles etc,

    The comments seem to point to the understanding that renewables are not the holy grail of energy and come with a multitude of problems.

  3. Now all we need is the cumulative cost to 2040 that results in the 5 billion tons of avoided CO2 emissions. Then we shall see what the DOE thinks is a ‘reasonable’ price per ton for CO2.

    My guess is if the incentives result in the US spending $50B/year for 27 years, giving $1,350B total, this is equivalent to a carbon tax of about $270/ton CO2.

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