Letter: Development council should abandon its efforts to achieve net zero | SteamboatToday.com

Letter: Development council should abandon its efforts to achieve net zero

The Financial Times reported this week that Germany is preparing for potential energy rationing next winter in the event that Vladimir Putin shuts off the pipelines that provide more than half of the natural gas consumed by Europe’s largest economy.

This is very serious, not only for Germany and northern Europe, but also for us here in bucolic Yampa Valley. Natural gas rationing will cause widespread deindustrialization of Germany and could result in de facto implementation of the Morgenthau Plan, which was a proposal to eliminate Germany’s ability to wage war following World War II by eliminating its arms industry and removing or destroying other key industries basic to military strength. This included the removal or destruction of all industrial plants and equipment in the Ruhr valley. Fortunately, an investigation by Herbert Hoover concluded the plan was unworkable and would result in up to 25 million Germans dying from starvation. Beginning in 1947, U.S. policies aimed at restoring a “stable and productive Germany” and were soon followed by the Marshall Plan.

So what is the relevance to the Yampa Valley? The same green (net zero) zealotry propelling Germany into economic collapse is happening right here. As part of Colorado’s commitment to net zero, Xcel Energy plans to close our local coal-fired electricity sources: Hayden Station (both stations by 2028) and Craig (first generator in 2025 and all three by 2030). Xcel Energy admits that full implementation of net zero depends on technology that does not yet exist (no doubt referring to grid-scale storage and grid stabilization, in the absence of spinning inertia). We are going to be dependent on sunshine and breezes and, apparently, “Fairy Dust” to ensure our lights turn.

In this week’s Steamboat Pilot & Today, Dylan Anderson reported on the Northwest Colorado Development Council’s efforts to “unify various communities affected by the impending closure of coal-fired power plants.”

Here is a news alert to the council: “Houston, we have a problem,” and it is the prospect of electrical blackouts resulting from shutting down our coal-fired power plants. The Northwest Colorado Development Council, regional governments, and other public-minded entities should immediately undertake an effort to change our current plan to achieve net zero.

This will ultimately require modification of HB19-1261, which is the Colorado legislation mandating reduction of greenhouse gas pollution. Remembering Edmund Burke’s admonition: “Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only a little,” we should all join the effort to avoid catastrophic failure of electrical energy, on which all our lives depend.

Bill Rutledge

Yampa Valley

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