Renewable Torture


Photograph: Kathleen T Rhem

The US military, on account of the rise in oil prices, wants to dramatically increase its use of renewable energy.

Of course at face value this is a good thing but it’s conflicting for some of us because the military uses energy to develop, maintain and ultimately use soldiers and weapons that kill people. 

While the military marches on a greener path in which “every soldier is a steward of the environment”  Alan Shaffer: retired Air Force officer

I mean that’s all very well and all but when those soldiers are sent off to kill people it kind of misses the mark a bit.  And it’s all well and good that they are going to use clean energy to feed and house their military personnel but those firearms that they use can never be clean and green can they?  And those lives can never be recovered.

There’s a grim and not-very-funny irony about statements claiming to help save the planet by using renewable energy to maintain their bases and develop their weaponry and then going into countries and using said weapons to blast everyone and everything to dust. 

Mass loss of life, humongous emissions from dirty bombs.  Even more emissions when rebuilding country and treating injured.  Not rocket science really, is it.

But, alas and alack, the military is going to do it anyway, with or without clean energy, so maybe we will just have to grimace-and-bear-it on this one.

I also found out while reading the article that Guantanamo Bay US naval base has it’s very own wind turbines that provides a quarter of its energy needs in the windy months.  What would be good though is if the main focus for these wind turbines was things like homes, hospitals and schools rather than military bases.  Although it has to be said that in spite of their prior apathy towards climate change, the US is leading the world in wind energy growth.  I’m sure I’d be forgiven for thinking that the Greening of George Bush is a lot less to do with climate responsibility and a lot more to do with trying to salvage some of his receding popularity. 

Anyway, more importantly, the detainees at Camp Torture can relax in the knowledge that their torment is being provided by clean, green energy.  But to quote one of the commenter’s of the article . . . imagine how much energy could be saved if they shut the bay down altogether?”

About Earthie

This is just a place to store all my head thoughts in the unfortunate event that my mind may, one day, choose to erase the lot. Hopefully m
This entry was posted in 'Green' investments, Climate change, Energy, Politics & Policy initiatives, Renewables, US, War & security, Wind power. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Renewable Torture

  1. matt says:

    Interesting angle there EP with this article. I believe the US military gave us the internet as well, at least in part. They just have so much dosh don’t they.

  2. Pete Smith says:

    The over-riding priority for the US military is using less energy, period. They don’t care how they do that, so long as they have to ship less oil. So you get anomalies like insulating tents and other accomodation in the desert to cut air conditioning usage, but they use polystyrene and other unsustainable, oil-derived materials to do it.
    It’s important not to get seduced by the idea that the US military has had a green epiphany.

  3. matt says:

    Yes I agree with you Pete that the military are definitely not on some ‘green’ orientated mission. It’s all strategy related to procurement and possibly even cost … shock, horror!

  4. earthpal says:

    I agree too. I don’t believe for a minute that their intentions are ethically-led.

  5. matt says:

    But if they are selling it as such then they’re naughty, naughty boys aren’t they. 🙂

  6. the Grit says:

    Hi y’all,

    On this one, you are really making me think. And not in a good way. What, may I carefully inquire has given you the idea that a world without solders is, at this time, possible?

    Really, at least over here, we have yet to rid our school system of bullies, let alone dream to achieve the task of ridding the world of their adult versions. So, and while I dislike the concept, it is intellectually necessary to admit to the continued need of maintaining people who are willing to fight for their country’s right to exist.

    Of course, in our case, we could let all the soldiers go, except for the few needed to fire the missiles and nuke anyone who pissed us off. While this would be cheaper, I, personally, don’t find it an acceptable solution.

    Until such time as we no longer have to defend against bullies and the insane, I offer you the same advice I gave to my son when he, in a fit of teenage rage, mouthed off about our military:

    At the moment, those brave men and women are accepting the responsibility of defending our country voluntarily. Bitch about them enough and recruitment levels will fall off, the draft will return, and your ass will be wearing an uniform instead of having a good old time attending college.

    Y’all should really spend more time reading history.

    the Grit

Comments are closed.