The Defense Production Act Used AGAIN For “Green Energy”

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The Organic Prepper recently published an article on the activation of the Defense Production Act, a Korean War-era Act, in order to address infant formula shortages. On June 6, the White House announced another activation of the Act in order to address the looming energy crisis.  

Congress originally enacted the DPA in 1950 to prioritize weapons manufacturing. It gives the government sweeping powers to manipulate markets, described in further detail in the above-referenced formula article. 

We should never, ever have needed it for something as basic as infant formula, and we shouldn’t need it in terms of energy production.

Defense Production Act
Image out of Washington State. Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

The fact that this Act, originally intended for wartime munitions production, has been activated twice in the past month merits some scrutiny.  

As stated in the previous Organic Prepper article, the formula shortage has been the result of over-regulation and industry consolidation. 

The United States has more than enough resources for the production and distribution of infant formula. The problem has been bureaucratic incompetence. The same bloated government agencies that can’t seem to figure out how to have a resilient food supply for the nation’s tiniest, most helpless citizens have not managed the nation’s energy resources any better. 

And unfortunately, the government’s intrusion into the private lives of its citizens will likely be even more damaging with the industry manipulation about to take place.

The Act allows for the rapid expansion of manufacturing of a variety of clean energy technologies. It is also being used to temporarily halt import tariffs on solar panels from Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam 

Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo stated, “As droughts cripple the West and Russia’s unwarranted invasion of Ukraine have placed increasing strains on America’s energy market, preventing disruptions to the electric power system, diversifying our energy sources, and responding to the climate crisis have never been more urgent, and solar energy is an essential component of meeting those needs.”

Let’s pick apart this statement.

Let’s look at Secretary Raimondo’s explanations behind our current, obvious energy crisis.  

“As droughts cripple the West.” What does that have to do with energy production? Well, drought affects the operation of hydroelectric dams. If not enough water flows, the turbines cannot turn, and no electricity is produced.  

And the drought out West has affected energy production. California’s hydroelectric energy production is currently 48% below its ten year average.

But has there been enough reduction in energy production to constitute a national emergency? Well, considering that the hydroelectric dams out West are still producing and that the US in general only relies on hydropower for about 6.5% of its electricity production, drought alone cannot explain the massive increases in energy costs most of us face.

“Russia’s unwarranted invasion of Ukraine.” Whether or not the invasion was unwarranted is outside the scope of this article. Why should this affect American energy production? 

Is Russia using all its energy in its attack on Ukraine? Did they refuse to sell us any more oil after they invaded?

Actually, no.

On March 8, the White House announced a ban on importing Russian oil, liquefied natural gas, and coal. The Russian attack on Ukraine only affected American energy markets because American politicians made it affect them.  

In 2021, the US imported approximately 5% of its coal and 8% of its crude oil and refined petroleum products (such as diesel) from Russia. While not insignificant, this again begs the question: Is this a big enough market share to explain the skyrocketing fuel prices and rolling blackouts many Americans face? Does this constitute such a severe crisis that the government needs to give itself additional powers?

The rest of Secretary Raimondo’s statement about “preventing disruptions to the power system and diversifying our energy sources” presumes that the US has never had a fully resilient, functional energy grid. She presumes that a diverse, stable energy grid is something we need to work toward.

I’m a Gen Xer. I’m not that old, but I’m not that young either. 

For a few years, I lived in a low-income neighborhood with a bad transformer. That was the only time in my life I experienced frequent power outages. Most Americans have been able to rely on the energy grid for a long time. 

(Want to know what to eat when the power goes out? Check out our free QUICKSTART Guide.)

The US has had a resilient, diverse power supply. We’ve had hydroelectric, coal, oil, and nuclear-powered electric plants. We have been able to choose to heat our homes with natural gas, propane, oil, electricity, or even coal or wood. Depending on your part of the country, wind or solar electricity generation has been available as well.  

Acting like the American energy market somehow needs “help” from the government is misleading in the extreme. We have plenty of our own fossil fuels. I’m not in love with Donald Trump, but the fact is, the United States was a net exporter of energy during Trump’s presidency.

This changed in 2021, not because we ran out of fossil fuels, but because when Biden took over, he immediately slowed or stopped permitting oil and gas projects. On his first day in office, he issued an Executive Order that, among other things, revoked the permit for the Keystone XL Pipeline.

The effects of bad government policy on nuclear energy have likewise been ignored.

Nuclear power plants produce vast amounts of carbon-neutral electricity. Furthermore, while oil and gas deposits will most likely be exhausted within 40 or 50 years, abundant uranium reserves still exist. 

In fact, our neighbor to the north, Canada, has the world’s largest supply.

Canada, however, has many of the same regulatory issues we have in the States. Jordan Peterson conducted an interview with Prime Minister candidate Pierre Poilievre in which they discuss the Canadian energy sector.

Starting at about minute 40, Mr. Poilievre discusses in detail Canada’s lithium and uranium deposits, as well as its oil and gas reserves. Like the Americans, however, Canadians import energy, not because they don’t have it but because regulations make it impossible to extract and/or refine.  

For example, Canada is in the perfect position to export liquefied natural gas (LNG). They have abundant natural gas reserves. To refine gas into LNG requires freezing the gas, and guess what? Canada is really, really cold. In theory, Canada could produce some of the cheapest LNG on earth because of its frigid environment.  

So why aren’t they producing it?

Well, since 2011, there have been 18 proposals to build LNG facilities in Canada. One is under construction. That’s it. 

They’re just sitting on huge reserves.

And the US is even worse. We’re closing perfectly operable coal and nuclear power plants. The Chicago area closed its last two coal-fired power plants this year. California is about to shut down its Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant even as drought has forced their Lake Oroville hydroelectric power plant to shut down.  

Drought and the Russians aren’t responsible for our energy woes.

Really, really bad political decisions are, and the politicians behind those decisions keep pretending it is all out of their hands.  

Between the US and Canada, North America has more than enough natural resources, not to mention the technical expertise, to main high standards of living for ourselves and our trade partners. We don’t need to rely on foreign dictatorships for energy. And yet Secretary Raimondo ignores all this. She says that responding to the climate crisis has never been more urgent, and therein we find the political class’s justification for ignoring the US’s cheapest and most abundant forms of energy.  

“Climate crisis” is just another blanket term the political class uses to insist it needs emergency powers. 

It has nothing to do with the environment. If they were serious about reducing carbon emissions, they’d just slap a carbon tax on everyone, industries would figure out the best means of compliance, and that would be the end of it. But this has nothing to do with the environment, and it has nothing to do with providing the citizens of the world with clean, safe energy.  

Like the formula crisis, this is about government creating a problem and then granting itself emergency powers to address it.  

These DPA enactments provide a regulatory framework for heavy-handed government control. In the case of the formula crisis, a framework within the DPA exists to prosecute anyone attempting to “hoard.” In the energy crisis, we see further manipulation of the energy market by the government.

Wind and solar power already receive preferential regulatory treatment.

A farmer that fires a pellet gun at eagles eating his chickens faces up to $250,000 in fines and two years of jail time; wind and solar projects regularly kill eagles and have only recently faced any prosecution. The deck has already been stacked in favor of wind and solar. The current DPA just stacks it further. And every extra set of rules adds to production cost.  

The more you think about it, the more disturbing the whole situation becomes. Americans have been shutting power plants, experiencing energy shortages, and then granting the government emergency powers to address the shortages that they created, to begin with. I wish I could just blame Joe Biden and the Democrats, but unfortunately, that’s too simple. Joe Biden doesn’t control Canada or the European Union, but their leaders have been making the same asinine policy decisions all on their own.

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So, who’s behind all this?

Well, the World Economic Forum has made it clear that they intend to end fossil fuel usage. In their paper “Fostering Effective Energy Transition 2022they reference “short term risks to energy affordability, sustainability, and energy security.” Somehow I have a feeling that our energy affordability will be about as temporary as our inflation has been transitory, but that’s beside the point.

The WEF intends to end fossil fuel usage. Not in 2040 or 2050, but now. With their advertised carbon-footprint tracking, centralized digital currency, facial recognition technology, and digital identification they will be willing and able to enforce, well, just about whatever they want.

So, what do we do, especially if we’re not in the situation to go totally off the grid like JJ?

First, analyze your needs. We’re all so different. The needs of an elderly apartment-dwelling couple will be very different from the needs of a houseful of teenagers on a working farm. Then ask yourself what small-scale options would be best in your area.

For example, in my area, some people can provide most of the heat needed for the household with passive solar water heaters. That probably wouldn’t be practical in New England or Canada, but they’ve got a lot more wood up there. 

Look around. Think about your advantages in your area. Research as much as you can, while you can.

Don’t live in fear. 

Be situationally aware. Don’t delude yourself into thinking that if the right people just get elected, our problems will disappear. Our problems go far deeper than one or two election cycles. But don’t despair. Make your preparations so that you can rest easy. Enjoy your circles of family and friends. Keep them close. Things may get pretty interesting before too long.

What are your thoughts?

Do you also find this concerning? Do you think the repeated use of the Defense Production Act is an abuse of power? Or do you feel this is a good reason to use the DPA? Share your thoughts in the comments.

About Marie Hawthorne

A lover of novels and cultivator of superb apple pie recipes, Marie spends her free time writing about the world around her.

Marie Hawthorne

Marie Hawthorne

A lover of novels and cultivator of superb apple pie recipes, Marie spends her free time writing about the world around her.

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  • Biggest question Marie is:
    What’s the secret sauce for a great Apple pie?
    Thanks for the deep research and time spent writing this article. We are all going to feel big changes coming. I wish there were plug and play options, but alas… I see none.
    Again, thank you Marie.

  • The “green energy” agenda around the world is to bring EVERY country into a third world status,PERIOD!The problem with “green energy” is, their is not enough silver in the world to create the solar panels needed to power up the planet,nor is their enough battery storage to operate the grid when the sun isn’t shining.What do they do with the expired batteries?They cannot be recycled nor can they be buried.The batteries are made from rare earth minerals that have to be mined,and are toxic to everything and everyone.Wind power does not work when the wind doesn’t blow,and the wind powered generators are prone to failure because of the blades,which cannot be recycled.None of the “green energy” agenda will work for the masses.It is very expensive and will always be prone to failure.The only way to power up planet earth is with hydroelectric, natural gas,clean coal and nuclear energy,all of which is inexpensive.

  • Drought and the Russians aren’t responsible for our energy woes.

    What woes? I chose to exit the electrical grid and go solar, but my average outage time for years has been measured in minutes, and total days down per year is around 3.

    Pick the worst spot (CONUS, don’t pick Haiti lol) you can think of and I will do some research and get some actual numbers.

    And we should define “woe”. What is that, no electricity for 2 months of the year? 7?

    Future potential woe?

    Lower solar cost in the short term can only help preppers.

    I agree that regulating economic forces is a mistake, and should be left to the market, but regulation is what government DOES. As much as we dislike it, another niche segment of the population is screaming for it.

    It’s just a change. Whether it comes about from the market (hello car, bye bye horse carriage and buggy whip) or from a fool recklessly using Wartime regulations to fast track infrastructure change makes little difference in the end result.

    “With their advertised carbon-footprint tracking, centralized digital currency, facial recognition technology, and digital identification they will be willing and able to enforce, well, just about whatever they want”

    No they won’t. All you have to do is refuse. You will suffer, your family will suffer for decisions you make. If you aren’t willing to suffer now (I don’t say can’t, we can all suffer) you will comply in the future.

    No need for drama, or fear or anger (I admit I feel those things from time to time) Change happens, adapt, or become good at suffering.

    No amount of prepping will prevent the drastic changes coming as exponential population growth drives more onerous government oversight into every facet of life in a (probably useless) effort to maintain control.

    We aren’t gerbils, popping out of our sawdust to take a spin on the running wheel, I refuse to pushed in that direction. By government propagandists or well meaning, legitimately concerned and ultimately imo correct article writers.

    Gadgets, freeze dried food supplies, Goretex shell jackets with fully taped seams, solar ovens…

    Do any of those things enable a smoother transition to a future where we have less control over our own lives than we did 20 years ago?

    If not, what would?

    • MisReadingTheRiver,
      I will play.

      Rather than one place, how about three?
      One in the NE, like Maine (snow, cold temps).
      One in the Deep South (heat, hurricanes).
      And one on the West Coast (heat, wildfires).

      For a 2,400sqft (national average) home, family of 4, and with 2 EVs requiring a daily/nightly recharge to full capacity of the battery.
      What is their average power consumption month/year?
      What is their average cost month/year?
      How large and at what cost would they need of a solar array?
      Cost of battery storage to cover say, 3 sunless days?

      I am on lunch, and gotta get back out in the fields to tend to livestock, but I will get some data/figures later to compare. Quick look, using the site for some of the info above.

  • IMO it’s nothing but a sneaky way to nationalize the industry, just as the ACA was a sneaky way to implement single payer. Eight years after the ACA went into effect, most insurers have exited the individual market because the mandates made the policies too expensive to offer. Now they’re implementing centralized planning to determine what’s produced in this country and at what price. Given the results of their actions over the past two years, I am not optimistic.

  • The idea of going green sounds all well and good.
    Ever see the BTU chart of how much energy is produced by solar vs fossil fuels?
    Solar capacity has grown to an est 97gigawatts, enough to power 18 million homes.
    That is it.
    No mention of EVs.

    A realistic approach would be to lower our over all power consumption and a multi-faceted energy production of solar, wind and nuclear over a long transitional period. But seems they just want to skip over prudent planning and go right to lets have a half baked idea, no planning and an epic fail that results in all us commoners without power, and paying for it.
    I would be for a realistic, show me the math, transition to green energy, lowering our dependence on fossil fuels. Have yet to see one.
    And, lower our power consumption? Does anyone else recall a few years ago, when the Energy Department suggested people raise their thermostats to 78 in the summer and lower them to 68 in the winter? People nearly lost their minds! (Disclaimer: I do not have AC, and in the winter, 63 feels comfortable to me)

    I will disagree with the author on our electrical grid. It is not that resilient, and is long overdue for a overhaul (ref: The Grid: The Fraying Wires Between Americans and Our Energy Future and Lights Out). And that is before taking into consideration solar or wind, but just what is there. Read an article recently that it would cost a trillion dollars to update the grid and take a decade to do it. Naturally, it will be over cost, overdue and likely fail to deliver what was promised.

    Their have been more than a few reports on how the CA and TX grid are vulnerable power outages this summer. It has been noted due to the shut down of power generation plants, mostly fossil fuel, but some nuclear too, without various green energy production being brought online to pick up the capacity. Nearly no mention of some kind of energy storage for when the sun is not shinning or the wind not blowing.

    Kinda like putting the cart in front of the horse . . . perhaps I should get into the horse and carriage business now. Might be a future growth market.

    • 1stMarineJarHead is correct about the electrical grid. It is very brittle, not resilient, and vulnerable to damage from bad actors.

      Nuclear power would solve a lot of this, but those who oppose them typically tend to focus on construction methods or waste disposal. Construction methods and accident containment scenarios were addressed decades ago. I learned a lot about that from nuclear engineers when I worked for a company building training simulators for plant operators. Decades later, while working in an R&D group doing research associated with space exploration (colonization of our solar system), I became educated about waste disposal methods. Yes, existing waste clean-up is an issue, and that is exactly one area we were researching in conjunction with others.

      The people making these decisions are either doing it intentionally, or clueless about planning and implementing much of anything.

  • I randomly chose Bangor Maine, and was surprised to find this:

    3 outages on average for 2017, lasting longer (40 hrs on average), the highest for both in the nation at that time.

    Thats… nothing. Go buy new milk and ice cream and you are good to go. Your eggs should still be fine, especially if you had an igloo cooler and some ice.

    I typed a lot more, but entering my email caused a weird page jump and obliterated 20 minutes of typing. Readers should be grateful for this unintentional site bug lol.

    Look, I don’t matter. I’m humble. I can’t reasonably expect STRATFOR style white page assessments in every article.

    And I like reading the articles, and commenting. I just don’t like to feel like an article is pushing me, with a lot of carefully chosen language.

    Let’s not demonize things that can help us reach energy independence as individuals. Seems like a bad idea.

    • Actually I read an article saying the NE has the longest power outages when compared to the rest of the nation.

      Sorry to hear you lost 20 min of writing. I usually type up in a office program, then copy and paste for that very reason.

      Some quick searches I found:
      Average American home uses 10,715kWh or 893kWh per month.
      The three states I picked (cost per kWh):
      CA – 19.90cents/kWh
      GA – 12.26cents/kWh
      ME – 16.16cents/kWh

      7kW AC wallbox would cost around 18p per kWh, national average to charge a EV. For a Hyundai Ioniq 5, would take 10.5 hours to fully charge assuming close to zero.

      The average American home uses 30kWh a day, and will need 38 solar panels, each rated at 300 watts.
      A solar array will lose about 23% of solar energy through differing conditions, from dust on the panels, to cable transference, to thermal loss, to inverter loss and more.

      For a 3 days worth of back up battery storage, about 75 deep cycle batteries.

      Finding the cost for panels and batteries is a pain, they all want you a email address.

      Will try to crank out numbers later, gotta go and cover some of the gardens with Remay.

      • “The average American home uses 30kWh a day”
        That seems like a huge number 1st Marine (I’m not doubting your sources). My average usage is about 8 kWh per day and half of that is the hot water system alone. I wonder if a lot of that 30 kWh a day is complacent wasted energy that may be reduced when people are forced to tighten their belts. Or maybe a handful of billionaires with 50 room mansions drives up the average for all ? I’d love a few commentators to check their usage and comment back. Does the average home really use 30 kWh per day? I’m genuinely interested.

        • Hi Joe,
          Here is one of the sites I quoted from:
          It cites AC, space heating, and water heating as the biggest consumption of power.
          The South appears to be some of the biggest consumers, likely that heat/AC thing.
          I agree, 30kWh does sound like a lot, but it is an average across the nation.

          They have another one where I got the 30kWh a day, but cannot find it my history cache cleans out when I close the browser.

  • I kind of agree with you, but I am 100% against nuclear power. It is downright dangerous. Does Chernobyl or Fukushima ring a bell? Nuclear power plants are also prime targets for terrorists. Also where are they going to put all the spent rods? There’s a radioactive contamination factor there unless they plan on using the spent rods to make weapons with or sending it on a rocket to the sun.

    • Glass vitrification is effective for waste containment, and has been in use for decades. Sending it on a rocket to the sun has been, and is currently still being studied.

      It is impossible to make anything 100% secure, but with appropriate physical security, you can discourage many bad people from even trying by making things very difficult or expensive to breach.

      Different human beings around the planet have chosen to use different methods of nuclear plant construction and operation. Safety gets more attention in some places than others, but it doesn’t mean they are ‘downright dangerous’.

  • Those involved in the WEF are few, couple of hundred maybe but the peasants are many- hundreds of thousands! Yes they have lots of money and technology and hubris on hand. People, including myself, need to start making noise and refusing to play these stupid games.

    Technology depends on electricity to work. Unplugged/unpowered there is no technology. How long do you think it will take for them to figure out that wind/solar won’t power even their basics?

    Quite frankly if one were to go on a media fast, there might be a lot less anxiety to deal with. This fear factor is simply unbelievable to me!

    I ask, who in the hell died and left the WEF in charge of me? An American living on American soil. I did not give my consent and they can take a long walk off a short pier! These creeps are unelected and yet grab our tax dollars in various ways and scheme to make our lives very difficult. Why in the world are “we the people” allowing them so much power in our lives?

    It may be a good thing for the populous in this country to have to do without some “stuff.” Many have never done without and will have a stroke at the thought of not having a cell phone! I am old enough to have talked with Great Depression survivors. Many of them just buckled down and got tough to survive. Looks like that option may be coming around again.
    Nothing new under the sun.

    • MO Patriot,
      Once upon a time, back when I was in IT (a job that dang near killed me), we used to have a saying,
      “If the power goes out, and no one can access that excel spreadsheet on the hard drive, does it really exist?”

      Does anyone have that information available on hard copy any more?

      Running facial recognition SW with out power is kinda hard. Banking system? Cloud storage?
      Call me crazy.

    • Indeed, you are correct about pushing back. Find a way to do it. Pick an issue, find like minded people, and push back. I call some of the Representatives from my state (the ones who are in D.C.) so often, their staff members recognize my number and my voice. Many people forget the human beings who are aware of what’s going on and don’t want to be herded into a terrible existence (or extinction) number in the tens or hundreds of millions.

      My grandparents lived through the Great Depression. I learned a lot from them growing up, and try to pass some of that knowledge along to others when the opportunity presents itself.

  • Do you all get your “facts” from the same place? Like reading the same LTTE. Plenty of drilling licenses that are *not* being used, Biden “did not stop them”. And Keystone – you really think that would benefit the average American? If you do, got some land for sale for ya. Since when is it the US responsibility to make it easy for Canada?

    • The Biden admin closed bidding for licenses due to a “lack of interest,” from oil companies.
      That was false and a means to push for their green agenda.
      Oil companies were interested, but like in poker, they do not show their hand prior to bidding.
      Pipelines are a cheaper method of transportation of oil than by rail. So, yes, US consumers would of benefited.

      Recently, two energy market movers and billionaires, John Catsimatidis and John Arnold, have stated the Biden admin is doing everything they can to inflate fuel/energy prices. Arnold cited a NYT article saying, “Biden made it even harder to acquire permits by restoring state and tribal rights to veto energy infrastructure.”

      While in Japan, Biden announced, “[When] it comes to the gas prices, we’re going through an incredible transition that is taking place that, God willing, when it’s over, we’ll be stronger and the world will be stronger and less reliant on fossil fuels when this is over.”
      Oddly enough, someone at the WEF that very week said something similar.
      So, yes, this is intentional.

  • Very well-written and researched article. I also like that you point out that no-one is coming to “save us” at the next election or whatever (if we even get an election, and if it is more than a sham election).
    I bought a solar oven recently. My main concern is loss of water, but of course losing power would be a more than painful adjustment. I think all hell would break lose. I give most people about 3 days in my area before they start to get pretty crazy .

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