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Duke University just published the results of a survey of beliefs about climate change in America. The findings are a mixed bag. On the positive side, the percentages of people who think climate change is occurring (84%) and human activities are the primary cause (54%) have reached the highest levels ever recorded. Most also favor regulations capping emissions and clean energy, but support for pricing carbon through cap-and-trade and taxes is low.

As you might also guess, there is a large partisan divide with Republicans much more likely to reject climate science than Democrats and Independents. However, even among Republicans, a slim majority accept that the climate is changing, greenhouse gas emissions should be regulated, and clean energy needs to be promoted.

Also not surprising was that watching Fox News is associated with ignorance and loyalty to fossil fuels. That ignorance is not a coincidence. Another recent survey found that News Corp. broadcast and print media provide a constant diet of misinformation about the climate crisis.

News Corp. must be concerned that too many conservatives think clean energy is a good idea. They have ramped up the stupid. Did you know that solar energy cannot work in America? It is because we are too stupid to make it work here and we get less sun than European countries like Germany.

It is clear that there were three objectives in the Fox News report: (1) bash Obama, (2) bash incentives for solar power, and (3) promote natural gas.

The Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory pointed out the cow chips on the Fox News couches. As noted by senior scientist at the NREL, Germany's solar resources are equal to that of Alaska, the state with the least amount of direct solar energy over the course of the year. Facts, smacks.

In the Washington Post, Brad Plumer explains the real difference between solar power initiatives in the US and Germany.

Yet despite those limitations, Germany has still managed to be the world leader in solar power. At the end of 2012, the country had installed about 30 gigawatts of solar capacity, providing between 3 percent and 10 percent of its electricity. The United States, by contrast, has somewhere around 6.4 gigawatts of solar capacity.

Why the difference? Policy is the big factor. The German government has heavily subsidized renewable energy for years through a variety of measures. Perhaps most crucially, the country’s “feed-in tariffs” allow ordinary people to install solar panels on their rooftops and sell the power to the grid at favorable rates. (The costs are then shared by all electricity users.)

Solar installations are also much cheaper in Germany — about half as cheap as they are in the United States. Partly that’s because the industry is bigger. But a recent report from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory discovered a bunch of smaller factors, too. Permitting is easier in Germany. And German solar installers spend less on marketing, inspections, and grid-connection fees. That all adds up.

Sometimes I cannot tell the difference between Fox News and the Onion. Well, both take ridiculous to absurd new levels, but only the Onion is amusing.
WASHINGTON—Sources have reported that following a long night of carousing at a series of D.C. watering holes, Energy Secretary Steven Chu awoke Thursday morning to find himself sleeping next to a giant solar panel he had met the previous evening. “Oh, Christ, what the hell did I do last night?” Chu is said to have muttered to himself while clutching his aching head and grimacing at the partially blanketed 18-square-foot photovoltaic solar module whose manufacturer he was reportedly unable to recall. “This is bad. I really need to stop doing this. I’ve got to get this thing out of here before my wife gets home.” According to sources, Chu’s encounter with the crystalline-silicon solar receptor was his most regrettable dalliance since 2009, when an extended fling with a 90-foot wind turbine nearly ended his marriage.
Get fracked, Fox.
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Comment Preferences

  •  Its true (8+ / 0-)


    FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

    by Roger Fox on Sat Feb 09, 2013 at 06:08:27 PM PST

  •  More Faux Journalism (6+ / 0-)

    Fox News has strict journalistic standards, D cups or bigger.

    "Senators are a never-ending source of amusement, amazement, and discouragement" ~ Will Rogers

    by Lefty Coaster on Sat Feb 09, 2013 at 06:35:27 PM PST

  •  So the only way Fox can count itself to be (9+ / 0-)

    "Fair and Balanced" is to try and make sure they are only wrong half the time.

    After today's solar fail/story they're certainly going to have be aggressively fact checking for a month or more to keep their long-term average "balanced".

    Anyhoo, my husband, as a solar project manager, was especially incensed by that story and spent time today sending a fact-based rebuttal: (copied in part below)

    Please get your facts straight.  Here in upstate NY today, I came in from plowing out after the blizzard, during which I noticed that after just two hours of sun, the snow had already slid off my roof-mounted solar PV panels (but not the surrounding roof areas.)  I checked the power monitor and these puppies were cranking out MORE power at noon than they would in Los Angeles.  Then I opened an online clip about your story about how dim the solar prospects are for America.  Gee, please send that young lady back to the library (or at least Google) to get the whole truth!

    1.    Jobs.  Solar has created thousands of jobs in the US.  Full disclosure: Mine is one of them.

    2.    Sun.  The U.S. gets MORE sunlight than Germany.  Check your globe.  Berlin is at 52-1/2 degrees North.  My house is at 43.  Berlin is 655 miles further north than my house.  

    3.    Germany.  If I built a standard rooftop solar PV system of 4kw in Berlin, it would see an annual average of 2.96 “full noon sun” hours per day, generating 3,266 kWh of electricity.

    4.    Northeast U.S.  The identical system in Albany (nearest data point to my location) would see 4.35 average sun hours per day and generate 5,012 kWh of electricity.  The Northeast is better for solar!

    5.    Incentives.  The German solar success was due to them having much better government incentives than we’ve had.  Now that they have kick-started their industry, they are scaling back their incentives and enjoying the benefits.  We should stay the course and do likewise.

    6.    R&D.  Do you have a clue why Solyndra failed?  It wasn’t for corruption or politics. They had a brilliant technology, but it arrived too late, just before the world-wide drop in solar PV prices for other technology.  In any emerging industry, R&D will inevitably result in some tech that works better than others.  This applies to everything from cars to planes to computers.  The vast majority of programs funded by the Stimulus were successful.

    We have an experimental system up (a mixed roof and pole mount design we are tinkering with) and our panels were cranking out watts today like nobody's business. They were clear of snow from the the Bliz', in the bright sunshine reflecting off the pure white snow and it is cold as hell (makes for better production than warmer areas with the same solar potential).

    Amazing since we're in the "solar-barren" Northeast if you listen to the Faux News. We don't have cable so I never actually see that netwrok unless my attention is specifically drawn to it.  To my mind, our rural-area lack of cable is in this instance is definitely a feature, not a bug.


    •  her husband works for Natural Gas business... (4+ / 0-)

      like everything else at Fox Noise, Nobody is ever told  that the expert actually has a financial interest in the 'message' (news , facts, whatever we want to call it) that they are pushing.

      In other words, what she is trying to pass on as fact is actually a lie to help pay her salary, bills. It is like asking a salesman for GM, which company makes the best cars.

      Fox News specializes in these types of things. Unfortunately, none of their viewers are told this.
      That's why they are consistently the most mis-informed people in America. Jon Stewart said it best.
      Fox purposely lies. That's their agenda.

  •  Ah, yes. the 97% fact-free zone that is Faux Noise (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DWG, Words In Action

    brought to you by the overpaid and undereducated.

    It's not that they don't know how to use the google.  They just don't want actual facts to get in the way of their agenda. . .cough, cough. . .I mean reporting.

    Fair and balanced?  Sure, if you place the fulcrum just this side of Atilla the Hun.

    Lest you quibble at the 97%--they occasionally have people on who give as good as they get.  Aren't progressives who can dish it right back fun to watch?

    "In politics stupidity is not a handicap." Napoleon Bonaparte

    by citylights on Sat Feb 09, 2013 at 11:00:22 PM PST

  •  Be fair. It's an understandable mistake. (5+ / 0-)

    In the location in the United States where their heads are, the sun doesn't shine.

  •  Some things never change... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DWG, thomask, Words In Action

    As this study pointed out back in 2010...

    Yet another study has been released proving that watching Fox News is detrimental to your intelligence. World Public Opinion, a project managed by the Program on International Policy Attitudes at the University of Maryland, conducted a survey of American voters that shows that Fox News viewers are significantly more misinformed than consumers of news from other sources. What’s more, the study shows that greater exposure to Fox News increases misinformation.

    So the more you watch, the less you know. Or to be precise, the more you think you know that is actually false. This study corroborates a previous PIPA study that focused on the Iraq war with similar results. And there was an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll that demonstrated the break with reality on the part of Fox viewers with regard to health care. The body of evidence that Fox News is nothing but a propaganda machine dedicated to lies is growing by the day.

    In eight of the nine questions below, Fox News placed first in the percentage of those who were misinformed (they placed second in the question on TARP). That’s a pretty high batting average for journalistic fraud. Here is a list of what Fox News viewers believe that just aint so:

        91 percent believe the stimulus legislation lost jobs
        72 percent believe the health reform law will increase the deficit
        72 percent believe the economy is getting worse
        60 percent believe climate change is not occurring
        49 percent believe income taxes have gone up
        63 percent believe the stimulus legislation did not include any tax cuts
        56 percent believe Obama initiated the GM/Chrysler bailout
        38 percent believe that most Republicans opposed TARP
        63 percent believe Obama was not born in the U.S. (or that it is unclear)

    The conclusion is inescapable. Fox News is deliberately misinforming its viewers and it is doing so for a reason. Every issue above is one in which the Republican Party had a vested interest.

    Lightly Seared On The Reality Grill

    by Retroactive Genius on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 03:55:02 AM PST

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