They are fundamentally unfair to lower income consumers and have only increased our long term dependence on fossil fuels, especially natural gas.
There's enough gas in the ground to destroy the natural world as we know it, and our civilization as well. It should be left where it is. Hybrid natural gas / renewable energy systems will not save the world.
The current rate structure for solar destabilizes the electric grid and transfers wealth from lower income consumers and apartment dwellers to people who are already wealthy.
I've discussed this on DU in quite a few places. Here's a recent post on rate structures:
I'm a radical environmentalist and I used to be a radical anti-nuclear activist.
Hell, if I was Emperor of Earth I'd ban all personal vehicles with engines larger than 10 kilowatts. I'd also ban the entire factory farm meat and dairy industry. Good thing I'm not Emperor, you say?
But seriously, my politics are practical and Democratic. My Emperor of the Earth proposals are thought experiments.
That being said, I've changed my mind about nuclear power. At this point it's a mature 75 year old technology and the only energy resource capable of displacing fossil fuels entirely.
As the human population approaches 8 billion we've worked ourselves into a very tight corner. At least 99% of us are dependent on high density energy sources for food, clean water, and shelter. Without these high density energy sources (now provided by fossil fuels...) about 40% of us would suffer and eventually die. That's about the same number of us who will suffer and eventually die by climate upheavals if we don't quit fossil fuels.
I'm some sort of socialist. I believe EVERYONE in the world deserves healthy food, clean water and indoor plumbing, comfortable shelter, and a reliable source of electricity. That can be accomplished with nuclear power, and with minimal danger compared to fossil fuels.
Profile InformationName: Hunter
Current location: California
Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 37,978
About hunterI'm a very dangerous fellow when I don't know what I'm doing.
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