Even lefties now admit closing the Indian Point nuclear plant actually HARMED the planet

POLITICS: Even lefties now admit closing the Indian Point nuclear plant actually HARMED the planet

Those on the environmental left cheering the Biden administration’s electric-vehicle mandates or Gov. Hochul’s offshore wind farms would be wise to heed a painful and embarrassing lesson New York is learning from its not-so-distant past.

Not only do so-called “green” policies drive up consumer prices, decrease reliability and upend everyday life (say goodbye to wood-fired pizza ovens and gas-powered stoves), they often end up harming the environment they’re supposed to be saving.

Talk about a lose-lose.

Consider disgraced former Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s forcing the Indian Point nuclear plant to close in 2021.

Heralded by a who’s who of leftist extremists — socialist Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders had labeled Indian Point a “catastrophe waiting to happen” while Hamas sympathizer Mark Ruffalo praised the move as a “BIG deal” — there were immediate and obvious problems.

For starters, Indian Point provided nearly one-quarter of New York City’s power.

Unilaterally and arbitrarily taking it off the grid meant other forms of energy would take on a new importance.

It wasn’t as if Big Apple residents were suddenly going to cut their power consumption 25% overnight.

Cuomo was already setting New York on an ill-advised path of becoming 70% reliant on “renewable” energy like wind and solar by 2030.

Still basking in the media’s COVID-era adoration, Cuomo was seen as a man with White House ambitions.

His wandering hands and all-around creepiness that led to 11 claims of sexual harassment and a swift resignation ahead of an expected impeachment were still to come.

To compete nationally in today’s Democratic Party, one must be a full-fledged disciple of the green cult.

It’s the reason candidate Joe Biden pledged to “end fossil fuel” in 2020.

Nearly four years after the Indian Point fiasco, New York emits more carbon per megawatt-hour than Texas — the nation’s leading oil producer — and outpaces America as a whole. NY Post composite

Cuomo saw the writing on the wall, and Indian Point was a small price to pay for his political ambitions.

To fill the sudden void created, New York did not turn to wind or solar.

It was fossil fuels to the rescue, just as it is every time the weather turns severe and citizens’ safety depends on the lights and heat staying on.

In the month after the plant’s closure, New York’s natural-gas generation increased from 35% to 39%.

Nearly four years after the Indian Point fiasco, New York emits more carbon per megawatt-hour than Texas — the nation’s leading oil producer — and outpaces America as a whole.  

Another twist in this saga: The power Indian Point produced was carbon free.

In fact, nuclear is such a clean form of energy that France derives 70% of its electricity from it.

Naturally, the 1,000 jobs Indian Point provided also went away and never came back.

When even the fairly left-of-center British outlet The Guardian admits Indian Point’s closure turned out to be a bad decision, the eco-left is running out of friends and advocates. 

As an unabashed and unapologetic advocate of fossil fuels, I’m not terribly interested in the debate over “carbon emissions.”

They’re an ever-shifting goalpost metric eco-lefties created, and I do not play the game by their rules.

No emissions number satiates them, so the fossil-fuel industry and individual fossil-fuel companies should stop trying to appease them.

America became the envy of the world because of — not in spite of — our abundant, affordable domestic energy.

John D. Rockefeller, Andrew Carnegie and the other titans who built our country didn’t do so with windmills or solar panels.

If fact, you can’t even build windmills and solar panels with windmills and solar panels.

They are all manufactured with fossil fuels in plants that run on fossil fuels.

Yes, the same eco-left playing the “net zero” shell game will tell you it’s bad to use fossil fuels to make electricity — but China polluting air, land and water to manufacture wind and solar that Biden buys with our tax dollars and are shipped across the ocean, burning millions of gallons of diesel, and installed on our beautiful landscapes, turning purple mountain majesty into wildlife killing fields while making the grid unstable and costing ratepayers more money is “green.” 

What a racket.

The New York City I grew up in knows a con job when it sees one. 

There’s a valuable lesson in Indian Point: Our energy situation is getting worse.

Like Cuomo before him, Biden has called for nationwide “net-zero emissions” by 2050.

Should that initiative come to pass, say goodbye to the reliable and affordable 60% of our electricity that came from fossil fuels in 2023.

The fate of the additional nearly 20% from nuclear is anyone’s guess.

So when you see Team Biden touting its “tailpipe emissions” rule to force us into electric cars or Gov. Hochul celebrating the completion of the South Fork Wind farm in Long Island Sound, remember they’re doubling down on proven failure.

If Indian Point’s past is prologue, not only will life become more expensive, but the planet will likely get dirtier.

Yet they’ll still call it “green.”

Daniel Turner is the founder and executive director of Power The Future, a national nonprofit organization that advocates for American energy jobs.

Twitter: @DanielTurnerPTF

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