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The Power Hungry Podcast

Author: Robert Bryce

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The Power Hungry podcast spotlights energy, power, innovation, and politics. Author and journalist Robert Bryce talks with top thinkers, writers, and influencers.
57 Episodes
Rupert Darwall is a fellow at the RealClearFoundation and the author of two books: Green Tyranny, and The Age of Global Warming. In this episode, Darwall talks to Robert about his recent report on the pressure for companies to adopt ESG (environmental, social, and governance) principles, the “weaponization of finance by billionaire climate activists,” why courts have become the favored venue for climate activism, and the “upside-down aesthetic” that is resulting in the deployment of large renewable-energy projects in rural areas of Europe and the U.S.
Dave Schryver is the CEO of the American Public Gas Association, which represents about 1,000 municipally and publicly-owned natural gas distribution systems. In this episode, Schryver tells Robert that the gas business is “under attack like never before,” how the gas grid contributes to energy reliability and efficiency, and why his group will “never be embarrassed” to talk about the benefits of the direct use of natural gas.
Nick DeIuliis is the CEO of CNX Resources Corporation, a Pittsburgh-based natural gas producer. In this episode, DeIuliis talks with Robert about how shale gas has boosted the Pennsylvania economy, the “façade” of ESG, why low-cost energy has given the United States an “epic strategic advantage” over the rest of the world, and the themes in his upcoming book, The Leech: An Indictment of the Evil Sapping America, Depleting Free Enterprise, and Bleeding Producers.
Michael Shellenberger is the founder of Environmental Progress and the author of the best-selling book Apocalypse Never: How Environmental Alarmism Hurts Us All. In his second appearance on the podcast, Shellenberger talks with Robert about the remarkable success of Apocalypse Never, his next book, San Fransicko: Why Progressives Ruin Cities, which will be out in October, sobriety, his return to his Christian faith, environmentalism as religion, “Chinese genocide solar panels,” and why the decline of our cities reflects the decline of our civilization.
Steven Koonin is a theoretical physicist who has had a long career in academia, business, and government. In this episode, Koonin talks with Robert about his new book, Unsettled, why he believes efforts to limit debate about climate science are “pernicious,” why he is concerned about the reliability of the electric grid, why he finds the “denier” term abhorrent, and why “we need slow, steady pressure” on our energy and power systems, “not crash decarbonization.”  
In this, the final (and shortest) episode of Indian Point Blackout Week, Robert talks to James Shillitto, the president of Utility Workers Union of America Local 1-2, which represents many of the workers who worked at the nuclear plant. Shillitto, who spent three decades of his career as an electrical lineman, said “Indian Point closed because of fear...fear of the unknown, fear of what people see in a movie” and fear prevailed even though the plant operated safely for “58 years with no real problems.”
Madison Czerwinski is the founder and executive director of the Campaign for a Green Nuclear Deal, which aims to “articulate a new vision for nuclear growth.” Madison explains why she attended the “funeral” for the Indian Point nuclear plant on April 30, why the closure is “unconscionable,” and why she is so angry that the United States built a “wonderful, world-class nuclear fleet that we are absolutely squandering for no good reason.”
Reiner Kuhr, an adjunct professor at University of Massachusetts Lowell, worked in the electric power sector for more than 40 years. In this episode, Kuhr, who calls himself an “energy technology economist,” explains why keeping nuclear plants like Indian Point operating is a far cheaper way to reduce carbon-dioxide emissions than by using wind, and solar, how deregulated electricity markets are undermining the nuclear sector, and why the U.S. is headed toward “a train wreck in power generation.”
Since 2014, Theresa Knickerbocker has been the mayor of the village of Buchanan, the host community of the Indian Point Energy Center. The plant was closed, she says, because anti-nuclear groups “stoked up the...nuclear fear that Indian Point was this big bogeyman that was going to blow up and kill us all.” She also explains why she is opposed to putting any wind turbines or solar panels at the Indian Point site and why other communities that are hosting nuclear reactors need to get organized  now and make “a show of strength” if they want to save their plants.
Mark Nelson is the managing director of the Radiant Energy Fund, which advises non-profits and industry groups about nuclear energy. Robert talks to Nelson about the “funeral” held last Friday in Buchanan, New York to mark the closure of the  Indian Point Energy Center, why there was “a feeling of moral outrage” at that gathering, and why electricity prices in states like California are “absolutely exploding.”
Tucker Perkins is an advocate for propane, a natural gas liquid that is produced by the oil and gas sector. In this episode, Robert talks to Perkins, the CEO of the Propane Education & Research Council, about the strategic importance of fuel diversity, the 3-D energy grid, and why the United States is the “Saudi Arabia of propane.”
Kirsty Gogan and Eric Ingersoll are the founders of TerraPraxis, a non-profit organization that is “focused on action for climate and prosperity.” Robert talks with them about their recent report, “Missing Link to a Livable Climate: How Hydrogen-Enabled Synthetic Fuels Can Help Deliver the Paris Goals,” nuclear energy, the footprint of renewables, and why the low capacity factors of wind and solar energy make them incompatible with low-cost production of hydrogen.
Chris Keefer is a Toronto-based medical doctor, Director of Doctors for Nuclear Energy, and host of the Decouple podcast. In this episode, Robert talks to Keefer about the importance of radiation in medicine, decarbonization, why Ontario is “the France of North America,” and why in his view, Canada’s 60,000 nuclear workers are “climate, clean air, and medical heroes.”
About 50 million Americans get their electricity from publicly owned power systems. In this episode, Joy Ditto, the president and CEO of the American Public Power Association talks with Robert about the lessons learned from the Texas and California blackouts, the importance of nuclear reactors and coal plants for baseload power generation, realistic timelines for decarbonizing the power sector, and why we need to, in her words, “rethink how we value reliability and supply” on the electric grid.
Energy poverty affects millions of Americans. In this episode, Robert talks to Dana Harmon of the Texas Energy Poverty Research Institute about how the February snowstorm increased energy insecurity among low-income Texans, why weatherization of homes helps increase resilience, and how energy, in her words, should be a “tool to help address poverty and socioeconomic disparities in our system.” 
Ben Heard, is the founder of Bright New World, an Australian NGO that is “committed to a vision where modern societies thrive on abundant, clean energy.” In this episode, Robert talks to Heard (who appears in Juice: How Electricity Explains the World) about the obstacles to building nuclear reactors Down Under, his visits to Fukushima, the challenges facing Australia’s electric grid, and why his parents are his heroes.
Zion Lights, formerly a communications director for Extinction Rebellion, has become one of Britain’s highest-profile advocates for nuclear energy. In this episode, Robert talks to Lights about apocalyptic environmentalism, the threats that wind energy poses to bats and birds, the parallels between the marketing  efforts used by tobacco companies and renewable promoters, and why the nuclear industry “needs rebranding.”
In the days immediately after the Texas Blackouts, numerous national media outlets published articles and TV segments which insisted that wind energy was not to blame for the electricity crisis. In this episode, Bill Peacock, policy director of The Energy Alliance, tells Robert about the history of wind energy in Texas, how the billions of dollars in “corporate cronyism” for renewables distorted the state’s electricity market, and how the state should reform that market to assure reliability and resilience.
In the blizzard of finger pointing that is happening in the wake of the Texas Blackouts, the natural gas sector has been getting lots of blame. In this episode, Robert talks to John Harpole, the president of Denver-based gas broker Mercator Energy  about the history of gas deregulation, ERCOT’s failure to heed the lessons from the 2011 blackouts, how power cuts by ERCOT reduced the flow of gas during last month’s blizzard, and why gas should be seen as a strategic fuel for the United States.  
The roots of the Texas Blackouts were planted in the early 2000s during the push to deregulate the state’s electricity market. In this episode, Robert talks to J. Paul Oxer, an engineer who has 45 years of experience in the electricity sector, about his stint at Enron before it failed, how ERCOT works, why the grid should always be ready for “two black swans,” and what Texas should do next. 
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