Extreme Temperature Diary- December 8th, 2018/ Topic: Obvious Trend…Boom Being Created In Rural Areas From Green Jobs

Saturday December 8th… Dear Diary. The main purpose of this ongoing post will be to track United States extreme or record temperatures related to climate change. Any reports I see of ETs will be listed below the main topic of the day. I’ll refer to extreme or record temperatures as ETs (not extraterrestrials)😊. 

Obvious Trend…Boom Being Created In Rural Areas From Green Jobs

We have two tried and true statements or rules of thumb to go by in the United States 1) All politics is local, brought about by 2) It’s the economy stupid. Any politician can base their fortune or misfortune on how well people are doing around the dinner table and how they are perceived within local communities. If new companies come along supporting individual families, cities, and small towns, offering a better way of life due to a new invention or product, sooner or later local politicians will get around to helping new entities get better established, building their business via tax incentives and perhaps government investment. About a hundred years ago Henry Ford became a household name after he melded a relatively new invention, the automobile, with good paying assembly line jobs located in the Midwest. Local and state governments seized upon Ford’s success helping to uplift the proverbial boats of many. Now one person named Elon Musk is trying to do the same with Tesla.

The Midwest since the initial stages of the crumbling of Ford’s business system since the 1980s, partially due to automation, has been dubbed the rust belt. Poverty has afflicted both urban and rural areas from the Great Lakes southward through the Ohio Valley. A hundred years after Ford and many more years since coal and steel first powered the economies of the Midwest a new business has come along promising much better and much cleaner lives, and a faster transition if supported by politicians. That’s one reason why I sent out this tweet a couple of days ago: 

We’ll see how fast Senator Joe Mancion sees the bright green light with time as we move unto the 2020s. Those who are stuck in the past, not progressing, tend to not have a good future politically or otherwise. Jobs are A #1 on the list of what any good politician would support. Politically rural areas are the last to progress, but if progress means more money, well of course change for the better will come there too.  Please read this new article by Inside Climate News by Dan Cearino:

https://insideclimatenews.org/news/07122018/rural-jobs-clean-energy-wind-power-energy-efficiency-renewable-vs-fossil-fuels-climate-change

Quoting and excerpt:

Wind turbines have become a familiar part of the landscape in the rural Midwest, and with them have come jobs, income for farmers and tax revenue for communities. They’re one sign of how the clean energy transition is helping to transform areas that sometimes struggle to attract jobs and investment.

A new report from the Natural Resources Defense Council shows the extent to which clean energy is contributing jobs to the rural economies of 12 Midwestern states. It also reflects what the rural Midwest stands to lose from Trump administration actions that harm clean energy, such as its recent call to eliminate subsidies for renewable energy, its tariffs on solar energy equipment, and its plan to weaken the Obama-era Clean Power Plan.

The authors say the numbers underscore the need in the Midwest for government policies that are supportive of clean energy instead.

In 2017, the latest data in the report, clean energy employed about 158,000 people in the rural Midwest, according to NRDC. While a larger number of clean energy jobs overall were in urban areas, the rural clean energy jobs stand out for making up a bigger percentage of the overall rural economy

Gary Easton has seen the growth in his rural southeastern Ohio business, Appalachian Renewable Power. The company, with six employees, installs rooftop solar systems, and most of its customers are in small towns or out in the woods or farms. This week, his clients include a flower shop in Barnesville, Ohio, population about 4,100, where his employees installed solar panels.

“There are years we’re experiencing 100 percent growth,” Easton said.

“I’m a rural business because this is where I want to live,” he said. “This is the kind of place where I want to be.”

More Jobs in Clean Energy than Fossil Fuels

Fossil fuel industries have faded as major employers in most of the rural Midwest, despite a history in some states closely tied to coal, oil and natural gas production, the report shows. Ten of the 12 states have more rural clean energy jobs than rural fossil fuel jobs. The exceptions are North Dakota, which has the Bakken oil field, and Kansas, where the numbers are close.

Meanwhile, renewable energy has been booming in the region as prices have fallen and wind power has become cheaper than both coal and natural gas in many areas.

In 2017, the Midwest added 31 gigawatts of wind and solar power plants, 24 gigawatts of which are located in rural areas, according to government data cited by NRDC. For some perspective, the country’s largest coal-fired power plants are 2 or 3 gigawatts each. A growing number of cities, including Cleveland and Cincinnati, have committed to transitioning to 100 percent renewable energy, and much of that power will likely be produced in rural areas.

Chart: Who Has More Jobs? Clean Energy vs. Fossil Fuels in the Midwest

Please read Paul Horn’s article for more. In light of these statistics it doesn’t make sense for rural residents to support  Republican politicians trying to prop up brown energy (I.e. coal, gas, and oil)  and infrastructure (I.e. internal combustion engine automobiles). The new money is in green tech climate change or no. The writing of change is on the wall in 2018 much like that of Henry Ford’s time when the horse drawn buggy got relegated to history. I’m still hoping that the 300 or so year use of fossil future will be looked in as just a transitional historical blip compared to the eons to come when green energy will power civilization.

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Here is some more weather and climate news from Saturday:

(As usual, this will be a fluid post in which more information gets added during the day as it crosses my radar, crediting all who have put it on-line. Items will be archived on this site for posterity.)

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The Climate Guy

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