IMMIGRATION AND ENERGY: SOME INCONVENIENT TRUTHS
By Frosty Wooldridge
February 16, 2009
How can an entire civilization, with instant mass communication, cram its head into the sand in order to avoid the obvious? How can leaders at every level maintain abject denial? How do individual citizens slink by the 'apparent'?
Dr. Anthrop, Professor of Environmental Studies, San Jose State University, and consultant for www.capsweb.org in California wrote a stunningly sobering report in the Spring 2007 issue of The Contract Quarterly, www.thesocialcontract.com , page 158: "Immigration and Energy: Some Inconvenient Truths."
What big dilemma faces California? After having reached many environmental goals as to per capita energy use, Anthrop said, "adding 602,000 people on their way to growing from 37 million to 57 million, negates all progress that has been made so far."
Note that California adds 1,650 people, net gain, every 24 hours! They add 400 cars 24/7!
"Environmentalists would like Americans to believe that SUVs and pickup trucks are responsible for America's growing oil consumption and that the increase in greenhouse gas emissions could be halted if only the U.S. switched from fossil fuels to 'renewable' energy," Dr. Anthrop said. "and, if Congress raised the fuel economy standards for motor vehicles."
Knock, knock! Is anybody home?
"The reality is rather different," Anthrop said. "In the first place, both energy consumption and gasoline consumption in the U.S. are being driven almost entirely by population growth. U.S. per capita energy consumption in 2005 has changed little from 1974. The 35 percent increase in energy consumption during this time period was due almost entirely to the 83 million people added to the U.S. population."
America housed 194 million people in 1963, but added 106 million in just 43 years by October 2006. Since the US female averaged 2.03 births since 1970, what caused our terrific population growth?
Immigration, immigration, I-M-M-I-G-R-A-T-I-O-N! What will add another 100 million people in the next 36 years by 2035?
Tut, tut, tut! You guessed it: immigration!
Anybody in the United States possess any idea of how we might deal with our impending energy shortfalls? How about accelerating air pollution? Perhaps you have a solution for saving 2,500 species of plants and animals that will suffer extinction in the coming decade in the lower 48 states because of habitat encroachment from the loss of millions of acres of habitat? Who will bravely discuss our increasingly contaminated rivers from farm chemical run-off? What about cities exploding beyond carrying capacity called 'overshoot'? How about our looming water shortages? "It is worth noting that 14 percent of the U.S. corn crop is irrigated and consumes 18 million acre-feet of water annually?most of which is over-drafted from the Ogallala aquifer in the Great Plains. To put this into perspective, the average annual flow of the Colorado River is only 14 MAF," Anthrop said.
As Obama, who voted for the 2007 amnesty, pushes for another amnesty, we may expect a population increase of 62 million by 2026.
"If per capita gasoline consumption remains constant," Anthrop said, "this population growth will increase gasoline consumption by 695 million barrels per year. If corn ethanol were to supply the 62 million people added to the U.S., corn acreage would have to be increased by 117 million acres?which equals 25 percent of all U.S. cropland. Growing a crop that results in soil erosion nine-fold just to support immigration of more people into the U.S. hardly qualifies for a sustainable policy."
Unfortunately, in fact, catastrophically, if we add the predicted 100 million by 2035, green house carbon dioxide emissions will increase 21 to 30 percent. All of it will amplify acid rain!
Ironically, "Many of the same members of the U.S. Senate who complained about global warming and America's addition to oil also supported S.2611 to bring in more immigrants as well as give amnesty to the estimated 20 million already in the U.S.," Anthrop said.
Does anyone see a disconnect here? Am I one of the few Americans that sees our civilization on a collision course with itself? Wouldn't you think that Senator John McCain might see it? How about Senator Mel Martinez, Kennedy, Burris, Webb, Durbin, Specter, Byrd or the rest of those 100 of this country's alleged finest men and women in the U.S. Senate? Are they all brain dead? Do you see one national leader mentioning what we face let alone dealing with it?
Guess what? Not one! Not the president, not the Senate, not the House, not one governor, not one mayor of any major city.
I shake my head in consummate exasperation at the stupidity of our civilization. Let's just run this puppy right over a cliff. Let's watch our children dangle at the end of a rope in the future. All because we refused to speak up about the obvious!
"The cheap oil age created an artificial bubble of plentitude for a period not much longer than a human lifetime....so I hazard to assert that as oil ceases to be cheap and the world reserves move toward depletion, we will be left with an enormous population...that the ecology of the earth will not support. The journey back toward non-oil population homeostasis will not be pretty. We will discover the hard way that population hyper growth was simply a side-effect of the oil age. It was a condition, not a problem with a solution. That is what happened and we are stuck with it." -James Howard Kunstler
Read and weep, or do something about it:
"As we go from this happy hydrocarbon bubble we have reached now to a renewable energy resource economy, which we do this century, will the "civil" part of civilization survive? As we both know there is no way that alternative energy sources can supply the amount of per capita energy we enjoy now, much less for the 9 billion expected by 2050. And energy is what keeps this game going. We are involved in a Faustian bargain?selling our economic souls for the luxurious life of the moment, but sooner or later the price has to be paid." -Walter Youngquist
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Listen to Frosty Wooldridge on Wednesdays as he interviews top national leaders on his radio show "Connecting the Dots" at www.themicroeffect.com at 6:00 PM Mountain Time. Adjust tuning in to your time zone.
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