‘Gimme!’ says Peduto & a dirtier pig in a poke

‘Gimme!’ says Peduto & a dirtier pig in a poke

Whoa! Hold the phone!

In the rarest of rare coronavirus pandemic-related public pronouncements from Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto, he labeled as “bleak” the city’s financial picture and warned of a multimillion-dollar budget shortfall this year.

That’s understandable, of course. Tax receipt-producing income has tanked.

So, what grand policies did Peduto propose to begin countering the downturn?

Did he admit that his blind fealty to the government puppet operation that long has been and will remain the city’s water and sewer authority has been misguided and that those services should be privatized or, in the least, outsourced?

No.

Did he break decades of union-toadying resistance to bringing city garbage collection into even the 20th century (let alone the 21st) by privatizing the service or contracting it out?

No.

Did he announce any multi-pronged plan to fundamentally change city government operations?

No.

No, in short order, Mayor Peduto yet again called on outside sources to bail out the City of Pittsburgh:

“At no point will the need be greater for major nonprofits, foundations and the corporate community to come together collectively to guarantee a Pittsburgh For All,” said Mayor Gimme.

Good grief.

Out of one side of his mouth, the mayor has bashed the industries that created such vibrant philanthropies but out of the other side, he continues to demand help.

Not to be outdone, in an op-ed in the Pennsylvania Capital-Star, Joseph Otis Minott, executive director and chief counsel for the Clean Air Council, calls for massive new taxpayer investments in wind and solar energy — in the pandemic-recovery period.

“Climate change remains a very real, very imminent threat,” Minott wrote from Philadelphia. “We cannot let our response to one crisis destroy our efforts to stop another by locking in more carbon pollution for decades.

“There’s a pressing need for immediate relief – workers and small business owners in Pennsylvania and across the country deserve nothing less,” he stipulated. “But we must consider the future impact and potential in this historic effort to reactivate our economy.

“That means creating sustainable industries and prioritizing a healthy environment for future generations,” Minott said.

Wait for the translation. Ah, yes, a command-and-control economy in the guise of “green energy.”

And that’s also akin to destroying the environment to “save” it, a new study says.

A Heartland Institute white paper makes the spot-on point of order that such a massive push for supposed “green energy” would, in reality, “devastate the environment.”

How’s that? Well, it’s quite elementary.

Such a “green energy” ramp up would require far more expansive fossil-fueled mining for the rare earth elements and minerals needed to facilitate both forms of energy. And much of that would be in foreign lands and in despots’ hands.

Furthermore, given the amount of product required, habitat losses would be enormous, the Heartland study found.

And just to give you a visual of how impractical all this “green energy capacity” is, researchers say it would take a land footprint the equivalent of all of Vermont and New York State covered in solar panels to replace the existing fossil fuel energy production.

And to power the country by wind turbines? A land mass one-third of the continental United States would be required, the white paper notes, citing a Harvard study.

“Wind and sunshine are certainly clean and renewable energy sources but,” Heartland scholar Paul Driessen concludes, “the technologies required to harness these intermittent, weather-dependent energies to benefit humanity require raw materials and mining operations that are anything but clean, ‘green,’ renewable, sustainable or ethical.”

And, he stressed, such a fundamental reality cannot be ignored.

Such “green energy” technologies “rely heavily on mineral extraction in someone else’s backyard, often in less-developed countries, where other people and their children do the dirty, dangerous work of providing essential raw materials while suffering from environmental and human degradation.”

Talk about forcing taxpayers, already gasping for air, to buy an even larger, dirtier, pig in a poke.

Colin McNickle is communications and marketing director at the Allegheny Institute for Public Policy (cmcnickle@alleghenyinstitute.org).