Saturday, November 22, 2014

Elon Musk protesteth allegations Tesla Motors tricked states in Gigafactory negotiations

Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk penned a blog post yesterday claiming that Tesla's management didn't trick Nevada or any other state in the Gigafactory negotations.  Instead, Musk says Tesla's policy is to create win-win solutions where the other party takes no risk, with Tesla Motors bearing all the risk.  Why?  It's to build trust and goodwill, according to Musk.  For example, offering customers the option to simply return their car if they're dissatisfied is blatantly not the way other carmakers handle leasing arrangements, but it should give customers another smidgeon of security knowing they can back out if necessary.

According to Musk, the rationale for seeking concessions for factory construction is that "It stands to reason that the beneficiaries of a project should also contribute to its creation."  Tesla Motors believes that Nevada will get "the largest and most advanced battery factory in the world and a very large number of high-paying direct and indirect jobs" that is "a no-lose proposition for the state" and "is not merely slightly good for the people of Nevada, it is extremely good."   Therefore, Nevada stands to make huge gains from the Gigafactory, and therefore Nevada should "contribute to its creation".

There's been a certain degree of criticism of the deal between Nevada and Tesla, amid claims that Tesla tricked not only Nevada but the other states who were competing.

According to a piece on about the bidding process, Tesla Motors carefully managed every step.   For example, Tesla would inform each state about the leading bid, to tell them how much bigger other bids were, but without identifying the leading bidders.  It may be this is business-as-usual in negotiating such deals, but it opens the door to lies by Tesla ("We have a bid for $N Billion" when there was no such bid) and other kinds of tricks.

We have Elon's assurances that Tesla didn't pull tricks on the states.  While Tesla's management is maintaining a good appearance of high ethics, I do wonder if or when Tesla will grow so big it's starting to do evil?

What makes this an "extremely good" deal for Nevada?  Didn't Nevada just write a blank check to Tesla for $1.4 billion or so?  Uh, no...

According to Musk ...

  • Tesla is not receiving money directly from Nevada.  The closest is a land swap between Nevada and the developer.  Musk notes that Nevada has oodles of empty unoccupied land to spare.
  • Most of the incentives "consists of alleviating a few percent of annual property and use tax on a huge amount of equipment over the course of 20 years, an average of about $50 million per year after initial construction".
  • After the incentives expire the Gigafactory will (assumably) remain in operation and continue contributing to Nevada's economy.
  • The incentives are performance based, meaning Tesla must achieve various milestones to unlock the incentives and lose them if the company fails to do so.
This isn't the first time performance-based incentives for a clean technology company faced criticism including such-and-such government had simply written a blank check.  That exact complaint was lodged against the Dept. of Energy loans to Fisker Automotive.  Those loans were performance based, and when Fisker failed to perform the DoE froze the loans and within a few months Fisker was seeking buyers, had kicked out its founder, and skirted bankruptcy.  Because they were performance based loans, the DoE only lost out on the portion already loaned to Fisker, and was able to hang onto $300 million or so in undisbursed loans.

Elon Musk does have a history of presenting facts slanted to make Tesla Motors look good.  For example, when the company received the crash test results from the NHTSA they trumpeted the "fact" that the Model S received the absolute highest crash safety rating of any car ever - 5.4 on a 5 point scale.  In actuality, the NHTSA crash safety rating is expressed as an integral number of stars, the most being 5 stars, and there is no rating above five stars.  Tesla Motors exaggerated - not exactly a sin of huge proportions, but not exactly honest either.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Lightning Motorcycles delivers LS-218 electric superbike to first paying customer

Yesterday, Lightning Motorcycle CEO Richard Hatfield delivered the very first Lightning LS-218 electric superbike.  Over eight years in development, the LS-218 is the fastest electric motorcycle in production and perhaps the fastest motorcycle of any kind in production.  The company has followed a strategy for several years of innovation through competition, or what they call "race on Sunday sell on Monday" in motorcycle sports.  Prototypes of the Lightning LS-218 have run at racing events since May 2010, with rapid advances and refinements resulting in an astonishing win at the 2013 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb when Carlin Dunne beat every last motorcycle racer by over 20 seconds riding the LS-218.

The Lightning Motorcycles LS-218 is at the very top tier of electric motorcycles, offering performance rivaling the fastest of motorcycles of any power train.  In August 2011, the team set the land speed record for electric motorcycles at 215 miles/hr, and the fastest speed recorded in that session (218 miles/hr) gave them the LS-218 name.  In 2012 at the TTXGP/e-Power race at Laguna Seca (held during the MotoGP weekend) the LS-218, with Michael Barnes on-board, gave lap-times within the ballpark of MotoGP lap-times.  Then in June 2013, as noted earlier, Carlin Dunne rode the Lightning LS-218 to an astonishing victory at the Pikes Peak Hill Climb, beating the entire motorcycle pack by over 20 seconds.

After every one of those wins, Lightning CEO Richard Hatfield promised the Lightning Superbike was for sale.  It wasn't until yesterday that the company fulfilled that promise.

Lightning Motorcycles is a small start-up electric motorcycle manufacturer based in San Carlos, CA.  The company plans to develop a full range of electric motorcycles.  They're using a strategy similar to Tesla Motors of first developing an ultra-high-end electric motorcycle, then plowing profits into developing affordable bikes offering performance more suited to the streets.  (A motorcycle capable of hitting 218 miles/hr isn't quite the right bike for a typical daily commuter)

Someone looking for the ultimate in clean green electric performance might skip past the Tesla Model S P85D (the new dual-motor Model S P85 that does a 3.2 second 0-60 time) and look at the Lightning LS-218.  Where the P85D will run well over $100,000, the Lightning LS-218 is one of a handful of electric motorcycles that capable of beating the P85D's 0-60 performance.  Of those, the LS-218 is the only one where the manufacturer has gotten the bike into production.  Plus, the LS-218 can be had for a fraction of the P85D's cost - the LS-218's base price is $38,000.

Florida's cleaner electricity from high efficiency power plant preserves fossil fuel addiction

Florida Power and Light (FPL) is taking delivery of the third of three Siemens ultra-high-efficiency natural gas turbines for FPL's Port Everglades Next Generation Clean Energy Center. The Siemens SGT6-8000H gas turbines and Siemens SST6-5000 steam turbine at the site are the core of FPL's modernization of the Clean Energy Center.  They are expected to cut fossil fuel use by 1/3rd, delivering over $400 million in fuel savings over the 30 year life-cycle of the turbines.  Oh, and reduced fuel consumption, due to higher efficiency, means the plants emit less greenhouse gasses.

All that's fine and dandy, and FPL should reap both economic and ecological rewards from doing this.  I would probably have ignored the press release about this, except that we can use it to explore the "stone age energy paradigm" idea I've written about recently on LongTailPipe.

The Port Everglades Next Generation Clean Energy Center is near Ft. Lauderdale.  Earlier this year, FPL demolished a 1960's era oil-fired power plant and are currently building a new power plant around these high efficiency turbines from Siemens.  The new plant is slated to go into operation in 2016.

That FPL is replacing an oil-fired power plant with an ultra-modern one running on natural gas is an improvement.  As FPL says on their website, benefits include increased energy independence (less dependence on foreign fossil fuels - oil imported from elsewhere) and decreases in negative environmental impact from FPL's electricity generation.

At the same time this continues the pattern of electricity - an inherently clean form of energy, and representing the new energy paradigm - being generated by burning fossil fuels - an inherently unclean form of energy, and representing the stone age energy paradigm.

Electricity is inherently clean.  But, that cleanliness is undermined by the fuel source for the electricity.  Natural gas is a fossil fuel and therefore increases carbon footprint in the atmosphere.  Increasingly, natural gas requires fracking.  That's something to think about as the refrigerator hums away in the background.  You don't see it, but there's a smokestack off in the distance billowing greenhouse gasses to ensure the fridge stays cold.

Burning fossil fuels is like drinking poison.  With this new high efficiency power plant, FPL is saying "we're drinking less poison than before, and it's American poison rather than foreign poison".  We're still drinking poison.

One would think the Sunshine State (Florida) would be a great place to install solar panels.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Romania's PM admits hoped-for fracked natural gas bonanza may not exist, despite fighting protesters hard to protect Chevron

Last winter saw an intense fight in Romania over Chevron's plan to drill exploratory hydraulic fracking wells near Pungesti.  It's now possible, according to Romania Prime Minister Victor Ponta, that it will all be for naught, that there are no natural gas riches to be had in Romania's shale region.  His statement came in the middle of a political campaign, where Ponta is running to become Romania's next President, and runoff elections are scheduled for next week.

According to Reuters, Ponta said on the Antena3 TV program Meeting Point "It looks like we don't have shale gas, we fought very hard for something that we do not have. I cannot tell you more than this but I don't think we fought for something that existed." (original: "Oricum s-a amânat, pentru că se pare că nu avem gaze de şist, ne-am bătut foarte tare pe ceva ce nu avem. Nu pot să vă spun mult mai mult decât atât, dar nu cred că ne-am bătut pe ceva care exista.")

In other words, Ponta's opinion is there's no natural gas to be had despite the struggle I reported on last Winter.

Chevron told Antena3 (reacting to Ponta's statement) that the company's engineers are still studying the samples taken during drilling operations.  In other words, Chevron's response is that Ponta is speaking out of turn, because Chevron hasn't finished its scientific study.

The drilling operations ended in July after reaching 3000 meters depth.  The drilling started in May.

Those operations were repeatedly postponed because of months of protests by local residents and activists that came from around Romania.  Ponta's government sent in Gendarme's (national level military/police) units to squash the protests so that Chevron's people could continue working.

The suppression of the protest was so severe that at least one Human Rights organization wrote a letter to the EU Presidency protesting the Romania Government's treatment of the protesters.  (denying several rights such as freedom of movement, freedom of expression, the right to information and freedom of assembly)

According to some Romania Oil Industry reports, the country has little choice but to frack itself.  Romania had formerly had good fossil oil and natural gas resources.  It was one of the first countries in the world to have a commercial oil company, and Nazi Germany made a beeline for Romania during WWII to capture its oil fields.

But, apparently, the country is past its peak of oil production, meaning that Romanian oil production has fallen quite a bit from its peak several years ago.  That means Romania's future is one of ever-increasing dependency on foreign oil and natural gas.  Like the rest of the world, Romania could shift its energy footprint from fossil fuels to renewable energy and electric vehicles.  Instead, the country is working hard to preserve its dependency on fossil fuels.

Fracking has been sold to Romania as a way out of the country's energy problems.  The U.S. State Department is pushing every country with frackable shale deposits around the world to adopt fracking, and to allow Western Oil Companies to work in those countries on doing the deed.  The example we have to share with the rest of the world is the bonanza of oil and natural gas from Pennsylvania and North Dakota.   Never mind the videos on Youtube showing people lighting their tap water on fire.

According to the Reuters report, the U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates Romania's shale formations can yield 51 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.  However, that's the same EIA which had to slash it's estimate of frackable resources in the Monterey Shale (California) by 95%, and according to the Reuters report had to slash its estimate of frackable resources in Poland by a similar amount.  It may be that the EIA is a crappy predictor of shale resources?

Romania's shale deposits were seen as not only a way to put that country's "energy" picture on solid footing, but to also aid the rest of Europe in its quest to prevent Russia from gaining an economic stranglehold by being the dominant natural gas supplier to Europe.

Woods Hole - benign Fukushima radiation plume reached U.S. West Coast, why isn't EPA measuring for radiation?

Barely detectable levels of Cesium-134 have been detected in the Pacific Ocean within 100 miles of the U.S. West Coast.  Despite the so-called radioactive plume having nearly reached the coast, we shouldn't be afraid (yet) that the Pacific Ocean is being absolutely fried with nuclear radiation from Fukushima.  The results were reported today by researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) who organized a crowd-sourced campaign of radiation monitoring to make up for the lack of official radiation monitoring.

About 3 1/2 years ago a massive earthquake off the coast of Japan sent a huge Tsunami to ravage Japan's coast.  The ensuing damage affected production of the Nissan Leaf in Japan as well as other parts, delaying some electric car rollout plans.  The Tsunami also damaged nuclear power plants at the Fukushima-Daiichi facility, causing explosions, nuclear core meltdown's, and a large release of radioactive material across nearby land, as well as into the ocean.

Over a year ago, TEPCO admitted they'd downplayed (lied about) the facts about release of radioactive material into the Pacific Ocean.  Coupled with the lack of official monitoring of radiation levels in the Ocean, enabled a chorus of hyperventilated "news" that the Pacific Ocean is being fried with radiation, and that we're all going to die.

The Fukushima story is extremely alarming.  The nuclear power plants melted down, and TEPCO and the Japanese Government are barely able to do anything adequate to prevent releases of radioactive materials.  Cleanup of the Fukushima site is expected to last another 40 years, costing zillions of dollars, and requiring technology that has yet to be invented.  While there is cause for alarm, we have to keep the story in perspective and not let fear carry us away into apocalyptic fantasies.

The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) project, led by WHOI scientist Ken Buesseler, holds a hope of shining the light of truth on the fearmongering, by the simple act of taking measurements from seawater looking for radioactive material.

That project released today research results showing that radioactive material from Fukushima has reached ocean waters off the U.S. West Coast.  The levels are barely detectable and pose no risk.  The samples taken on-shore detected NO Cesium-134.   Samples taken off-shore, in the open ocean, show Cs-134 levels were barely detectable in the range of 0.2 - 2 Becquerels per cubic meter of seawater.

So, yes, the fearmongerers are right, there is a radioactive plume heading to the U.S. West Coast from Fukushima.  The truth is that the plume is, at this time, benign.

While the reported levels are low and not cause for concern, today, we have to recognize a concern for tomorrow.  Despite the size of the Pacific Ocean, enough radioactive material entered the ocean to be detectable from thousands of miles away.  Release of radioactive material from Fukushima continues to this day raising this question:  Will there be a build-up of radiation?  Will widespread radiation from Fukushima become a real problem?  If so, how quickly?

Because there is no official government monitoring effort, and no grant money was available to WHOI to monitor for radioactivity, Dr. Buesseler turned to the public for funding and participation.  The results are based on a string of monitoring stations along the U.S. West Coast, as well as a research vessel that sailed from Alaska to California collecting sea-water samples along the way.

The image above shows the data plotted on a map.  The colors in the map aren't showing the radioactive plume, but the ocean temperatures.  The map also shows the gyre currents that swirl in a circular rotation around the Pacific Ocean.  The gyre is in part responsible for carrying the radioactive material away from Japan's coast.

"We detected cesium-134, a contaminant from Fukushima, off the northern California coast. The levels are only detectable by sophisticated equipment able to discern minute quantities of radioactivity," said Ken Buesseler, a WHOI marine chemist, who is leading the monitoring effort. "Most people don't realize that there was already cesium in Pacific waters prior to Fukushima, but only the cesium-137 isotope. Cesium-137 undergoes radioactive decay with a 30-year half-life and was introduced to the environment during atmospheric weapons testing in the 1950s and '60s. Along with cesium-137, we detected cesium-134 – which also does not occur naturally in the environment and has a half-life of just two years. Therefore the only source of this cesium-134 in the Pacific today is from Fukushima."

The researchers look for Cesium-134 because it's a short-lived Cesium isotope that is only produced inside nuclear reactors.  Because it's short-lived, any Cs-134 present in the ocean can only have come from Fukushima.  Cesium-137 is another isotope that's produced through nuclear reactions.  However, it is a long-lived isotope, and there are detectable quantities of Cs-137 in the Pacific Ocean that are left over from the nuclear bomb testing in the 1940's, 1950's and 1960's.

Radiation levels are being monitored off the Fukushima Coast, with frequent reports being published by organizations in Japan.  There is no official (U.S. Government or otherwise) monitoring of radiation levels elsewhere in the Pacific Ocean or near the U.S. West Coast.  This fact is alarming.  With the ongoing release of radioactive material from Fukushima, is there a serious risk of widespread radioactive contamination in the Pacific Ocean.

It appears the official line is that "The Ocean Is Big" and will dilute the radioactive material into harmless background noise.  Some worry that the U.S. Government and others are perpetuating a cover-up of a serious danger that radioactive material release from Fukushima will build up to where the Pacific Ocean is rendered uninhabitable from radioactive contamination.

Fearism aside the question remains - is the crisis at Fukushima - one of the woefully under-reported big stories of our times - a big risk to the rest of us?  And, doesn't the crisis at Fukushima demonstrate the fallacy of relying on nuclear energy?

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Should we buy electric cars or lease - Protect against future tech advances or buy the security of ownership?

I like to outright own my cars, driving them for many years, preferably not driving very much, all to make the best return-on-investment on each car.  But I, and many electric car buyers, say that at this stage of the electric vehicle market it's better to lease, rather than buy.  How would I, a true blue living-beneath-your-means guy, square these two opposing car ownership strategies?

I just leased a Kia Soul EV.  This is my first time ever leasing any kind of car.  I have a few thoughts to share. 

Fifteen years or so ago I pondered getting a GM EV1.  That deal would have cost $15,000 or so for a three year lease, and I would have owned NOTHING at the end because the EV1 was ONLY offered through a lease.  Nobody was allowed to buy the EV1.  As we saw in Who Killed The Electric Car, some EV1 lessors were so hooked on the car that they were desperate enough to keep them beyond the lease period that they offered to pay large sums to GM. Some staged a protest/blockade of GM's office in Southern California, when it was learned GM was going to crush the EV1's which had been returned from lease.  Some even got arrested, and then went on to form Plug-In America.
Me?  I couldn't get past that idea of owning nothing after spending $15,000 on a 3 year EV1 lease.  I didn't even try to get one. 

Fortunately most car leasing is not structured that way.  In typical leases, you're paying for the difference between the MSRP and the future value predicted by the manufacturer.  The three years (or whatever) of lease payments add up to an amount that's supposed to cover that difference in value.  The manufacturers prediction of the car's remaining value may or may not be accurate. Typically, at the end of the lease, the lessor can buy the car at its residual value. 

Whether this makes financial sense depends on the actual market value of that car brand/model at that time.  If the value plummeted, the lessor is better off walking away from the lease at its end.  If the car held value (is worth more than the manufacturers prediction), then it's better to buy the car when the finishes. 

This is my first time, so I might have gotten something incorrect.  If so, let me know in the comments area below. 

What might affect the future value of an electric car?

Maybe a given car will trigger an extra level of desirability, perhaps as a collectible?  The Tesla Roadster comes to mind, between its limited production and the mystique surrounding it.  The remaining Roadsters seem to be appreciating in value, as collectible's.  The same might happen for the Toyota RAV4 EV (Gen2), because of limited production and how good a car it is and its Tesla-manufactured drive train. 

On the other hand technology advancements, while exciting, and while making electric cars even more exciting than they are now, can render older electric cars worthless. 

A breakthrough in charging time or total driving range or automated driving capability or performance (speed, acceleration) could reduce the desirability of older electric cars. 

An example of this just hit the Tesla Model S market.  

In October 2014, Tesla Motors announced two major new features: 1) sensors and software adding strong driver assist features, and 2) a new dual motor drive train for the Model S. 

Both are very exciting advancements for the Model S product line.  Both, though, made the prior Model S's much less attractive in comparison.  There's talk that some existing Model S owners want to trade in their old cars to get the new technology.  If so, there could be a glut of used Model S's entering the market, and lacking the driver assist features they'll be less desirable that could make them worth less on the market.

When Nissan added 6.6 kilowatt charging to the 2013 Nissan Leaf, or switched to a heat tolerant battery pack in the 2015 Nissan Leaf, the older Leaf's became less attractive.

In 2017ish it appears 2-3 or more affordable 200 mile range electric cars will be on the market. Will older electric cars with a piddly (by comparison) 80 mile range be very attractive?  Probably not. 

In other words, leasing an electric car protects against technology advances that render older electric cars worthless. 

The same effect occurs in other markets.  I've bought several digital cameras for $300 or more apiece only to see them become worthless a couple years later as they're superseded by newer superior cameras. The same is true for cell phones, computers and all kinds of other electric gizmos.  I just sold my trusty iPhone 4 because the iPhone 6 was much better, and because Apple dropped software support on the iPhone 4.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

McConnell's Republicans aim to gut clean energy revolution, steering us back to the fossil fuel death trap

Ky. Sen. Mitch McConnell, and the rest of the Republican Party, won big in yesterday's elections.  In large measure it's been the Democrats who have pushed for things like renewable energy and electric cars, with the Republicans fighting these ideas tooth and nail.  The Republican stance is two-fold, first they're on record of wanting to destroy Obama's Presidency in any way they can even if it means grievously hurting the country, and second they seem bought-off-paid-for by the Coal/Oil Industry and intent on doing whatever the fossil fuel industry wants them to do.

Today, McConnell gave a speech in Louisville Kentucky talking about his plans as Senator and as presumed Majority Leader of the Senate.  His re-election as Senator, now that Republicans will hold a majority in the Senate, makes him an almost shoe-in for the role of Senate Majority Leader, putting him in the top tier of the U.S. Government.  That speech isn't just any ol' Senator talking about his plans, this is the top-ranking Republican elected official talking about the direction he's going to steer the Republican Party.

The tone of the speech was conciliatory towards President Obama, and showed an interest in partisan cooperation.  Coming as it did from the man who vowed Obama would be a one-term President, with the Republican Party doing all it could to destroy anything Obama tried to do, that was refreshing.  Maybe the future really will turn out that way, that the Republicans will put aside their hatred of anything that Obama does or said.  That's not what I'm here to talk about.

Among all the nicey nicey words said by McConnell, he said some things about "Energy Policy" that make it clear the Republicans will redouble their efforts to ensure fossil fuels remain the primary form of "Energy" that we have access to.

Remember that McConnell is from a coal state - Kentucky.  I lived in that state for nearly 20 years and remember McConnell as a leading politician in Jefferson County, where Louisville is located.  I also remember on the television machine the most common Public Service Announcement was an advertisement saying "Coal: Kentucky's Ace In The Hole".

McConnell clearly said the Obama Administrations efforts to undermine Coal consumption in the U.S. is "bad for the economy" and he'll act to undermine those efforts.

He described the Obama Presidency as having not done anything serious "on the energy front" in that Congress has not seen an "energy bill" in over seven years.  Uh.. a lot depends on how you define "Energy".  McConnell made it clear he'll push for Keystone XL pipeline approval, encourage other "domestic energy" production, and said “We need to embrace the energy revolution that’s going on in our country and promote it. It’s hugely advantageous, not only in the area of energy independence, but employment.”

When he says "Energy Bill" or "energy revolution" this isn't talking about the renewable energy revolution where wind and solar power prices are falling rapidly, and within a few short years should be at price parity with fossil fuels.  No.. he's not talking about anything wonderful like that.

The revolution he speaks of is Fracking, the Oil Boom underway in the Bakken and the Natural Gas boom underway in other shale deposits around the country.  He's speaking of reinvigorating the Coal Industry.  In another section of the speech he called for tax reform legislation, saying there's a desperate need to further reduce taxes on corporations.

Does "Energy" always have to mean "Fossil Fuels"?

Continued Fossil Fuel production and consumption is leading us, our planet, humanity, into dangerous territory of climate change and other negative environmental effects.  We simply cannot continue Business As Usual with fossil fuel consumption - the UN IPCC released a report the other day on climate change, saying that we (all of humanity) must eliminate fossil fuel consumption by 2100.  We can't wait until 2099 and then pull an all-nighter, we have to start now and keep making efforts over the intervening years to eliminate fossil fuels.

Therefore we have a battle ahead of us.  The Republicans (and others) will keep on keeping on with the idea that fossil fuel consumption is good for the economy, is not a problem with the climate or other environmental issues, and that keeping "the economy" rolling is of overriding importance.

Another result of the election is that Sen. Inhofe and his insane denial of climate change will be in charge of the Senate Environment Committee.

We who care about the future of humanity must keep on with our agenda, of making it clear fossil fuel consumption is a death trap.

We can't trust that technology alone will "save" us.  There's plenty of clean energy technology right now, on the shelves, already designed, ready to be deployed, that would make a huge difference in climate and the environment.  The problem is the willingness to do so.

What's needed is sociological change in that enough people must recognize the danger, and must recognize technological solutions are already available, and have the willingness to adopt those solutions.

If the Republicans succeed at gutting the clean energy policies already in place it will set us back considerably.

Conservatives ought to love renewable energy technology.  Fossil fuels, in addition to being a death trap, are a huge economic problem for the U.S. in particular.  Despite that fracking boom and resurgence of domestic oil and natural gas production, the U.S. is still highly highly highly dependent on foreign fossil fuels.  That dependency leaves us in a bad national energy security situation, and a bad economic situation of shipping zillions of dollars overseas to buy oil.  Conservatives ought to hate that fact.

Another thing Conservatives ought to love about renewable energy is that widespread deployment would mean Conserving the environment.  Conservatives ought to love Conservation, that is.

Fossil fuel consumption is a death trap.