It's done with selective editing.
Many, for instance, have grabbed a July paper from James Hansen , a Columbia University professor and head of the Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland, which argues with 20-20 hindsight that “soft renewables” like wind and solar can't replace fossil fuels “any time soon.”
OilPrice uses Hansen's discussion to claim he's gone over to their side. In fact they are deliberately ignoring his conclusions:
As long as fossil fuels are cheap, they will be burned. But fossil fuels are cheap only because they do not pay their costs to society. Costs include direct and indirect subsidies, human health costs from air and water pollution, and climate change impacts on current and future generations.
The public can appreciate that a rising price must be placed on fossil fuel emissions, if we are to phase out our addiction to fossil fuels. A carbon fee must be placed across-the-board on all fossil fuels in proportion to carbon emissions. The fee should be collected from fossil fuel companies at the first domestic sale (at domestic mine or port of entry).
In other words, Hansen wants a rising carbon tax to impose a real price on carbon fuel sources. He wants what I want – price equalization. He just doesn't shy away from calling it a tax.
Green jobs, like shovel-ready jobs, proved a myth in no small part because Obama is eager to talk as if this green stuff was the moral equivalent of war, but he's not willing or able to do things a real war requires.
Again, full agreement. Yet both these columns are being used right now to claim that a greener America is impossible, and that we should quit trying to have one.
Or try this Forbes headline on for size: The West's Green Future is in Doubt. What Ucilia Wang is actually talking about is the fact that this report, from Bill Ritter's Western Grid Group, stands a good chance of being ignored by policy makers.
While this FUD attack is going on, however, let's remember what is actually being said:
Hansen says we need a carbon tax. Now.
Goldberg says half-measures won't save the planet, and we need a true commitment.
Wang is worried that good reports like that of the Western Grid Group might be ignored, when in fact they need to be implemented for change to occur.
My point is, and always has been, that renewable energy is the profitable energy. Solar technology is advancing rapidly. Wind is proving its value. Biomass can be profitable – especially if you focus on the top of the value chain. Geothermal has barely been tried yet.
The higher the price we must pay for fossil fuels, the faster this transformation will happen. Don't let oily editing blind you to the fact that even our enemies know we need to go in the direction we're going, and that the only question now is how fast we move.