Within five years, Democrats plan to install 500 million solar panels and 60,000 wind turbines. Has anyone done a cost/benefit analysis? Are we saving Mother Earth or destroying it?
Every step in the production of solar photovoltaic (PV) power systems requires a perpetual input of fossil fuels (i.e. coal). Up to 5-6 tons of carbon dioxide is produced per ton of metallurgical grade silicon smelted. Charcoal consumption in silicon production represents the deforestation of approximately 4 million acres.
Polysilicon refineries depend on highly reliable conventional power and a supply of natural gas to provide heat in the process. The industry “consumes more electricity than it produces” on an annual basis. Lithium-ion battery technologies have not demonstrated sufficient grid-scale energy storage feasibility for nighttime electricity. Solar is polluting just like all high-technology or high-energy systems – there is 28 million pounds of cadmium, as well as lead contained in 500 million panels to be installed in 5 years. Leaching from broken panels damaged during hail storms, tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, etc. and at decommissioning is a big concern. Lu Fang, secretary general of the photovoltaics division in the China Renewable Energy Society, wrote… “By 2050 these waste panels would add up to 20 million tons of toxic waste… .”
Installing 60,000 wind turbines require 4.6 million acres. Wow! Solar panels lose 10 percent power when dirty so they need to be cleaned regularly which is costly in dollars and precious water not to mention snow removal. Recently Texas solar fields were out for more than 2 weeks, over 100,000 homes without power. In California brownouts often occur and their solar electricity costs 60% more than in the rest of U.S.
Experts say the only way to install 500 million solar panels in five years is to buy them from China. France and Australia did this. The results were cheap, shoddy solar systems with a five-year lifespan.
Is the cost worth it? No! Are we saving Mother Earth or destroying it? Destroying it!