Global Warming Debate: Morano vs. Climate Progress's Romm

For your Friday evening entertainment pleasure, last week Sen James Inhofe's (R-Ok.) former communications director Marc Morano debated Climate Progress's Joe Romm on matters relating to the global warming myth.

UPDATE at end of post: Romm hysterically responds to NewsBusters.

Presented courtesy of Roll Call TV (debate begins at minute 3:45, part two below the fold):

As an aside, viewers should count the number of times Romm claimed Morano just makes stuff up. This seems particularly important given Romm's statement regarding wind power producing more jobs than coal mining. 

Such an idea was floated in January by Fortune magazine's eco-blog Green Wombat in an article entitled “Wind jobs outstrip the coal industry.” According to the Christian Science Monitor, this claim was hooey:

Blogger Todd Woody cites new report from the American Wind Energy Association that about 85,000 people are now employed by the wind power industry, up from 50,000 a year ago. Mr. Woody then says that "the coal industry employs about 81,000 workers," citing a 2007 report from the Department of Energy.

Woody calls this comparison "a talking point in the green jobs debate."

The story was republished on the Huffington Post, cited by Mother Jones magazine, and has been bouncing around the green blogosphere for the past few days.

Now, in fairness, Romm only mentioned coal "mining." However, even this analogy is flawed:

But it's a bogus comparison. According to the wind energy report, those 85,000 jobs in wind power are as "varied as turbine component manufacturing, construction and installation of wind turbines, wind turbine operations and maintenance, legal and marketing services, and more."  The 81,000 coal jobs counted by the Department of Energy are only miners. Their figure excludes those who haul the coal around the country, as well as those who work in coal power plants.

Today's jobs report out of the Labor Department found 84,600 folks now working in the coal mining industry. As such, if you back out the wind power folks involved in "turbine component manufacturing, construction and installation of wind turbines, wind turbine operations and maintenance, legal and marketing services, and more," those just involved in coal mining would FAR outnumber those specifically in the wind power industry.

However, as SourceWatch notes:

There are approximately 174,000 blue-collar, full-time, permanent jobs related to coal in the U.S.: mining (83,000), transportation (31,000), and power plant employment (60,000). 

But, if you really want to compare apples to apples, the Monitor pointed out:

[C]omparing that to the number of wind power jobs is a bit spurious. If we're going to count those who build wind turbines, shouldn't we also count those who build the coal plants? The same should go for the lawyers and marketing people, too.

A 1995 factbook by the Department of Energy cites 1994 study conducted for the National Coal Association, which said that  the coal industry's workforce, which at the time was said to be 136,000, was indirectly responsible for another 1.4 million jobs.

Fascinating, as was the Monitor's conclusion:

While it's encouraging that wind industry jobs grew by 70 percent last year, it's probably a good thing that, all else being equal, they don't currently employ more people than the coal industry does. After all, according to the US Department of Energy's Renewable Energy Data Book [PDF], wind provides only about 2 percent of America's electricity. Coal provides half. If it really took that many people to provide so little wind energy, it would never become competitive with fossil fuels.

As the Fonz would say, exactamundo.

With this in mind, it's clear that Romm is the one making stuff up...but those on this side of the debate have known that for years.

That said, doesn't this demonstrate why the climate alarmists, with very few exceptions, don't want to debate this issue?

After all, if their entire strategy is to just keep repeating "You're making stuff up" without ever supporting this claim, you can understand why these folks rarely engage their opposition.

Think about it: if that's all you had to defend your position that the naturally occurring and essential to life gas carbon dioxide was destroying the planet, wouldn't you hide from the public with your hands over your ears nonsensically repeating "The debate is over?"

*****Update: Want to see the level of Romm's delusion and how separated from reality he is? This was posted at Climate Progress Friday:

JohninOregon Says:
April 3rd, 2009 at 8:50 pm

Hey, Joe, you're being dissed over at NewsBusters by Noel Sheppard, one of the most disgusting members of the denier pack:

http://newsbusters.org/ blogs/ noel-sheppard/ 2009/ 04/ 03/ global-warming-debate-morano-vs-climateprogresss-romm

Go get ‘em.

[JR: I'm not sure it is worth the effort. Note that Newsbusters pretty much admits that what I was said was true -- since, of course it was.]

Hey Joe: Why don't you identify exactly WHERE I said anything you uttered on Wednesday was true?

Astounding. Absolutely astounding.

As an aside, folks should remember that we once had a poster here named JohninOregon who regularly got his butt kicked all over the floor any time he entered a debate concerning AGW. Now we know where he got his poorly-founded ideas on this issue.

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.