Sun, May 22, 2022

Rethinking fossil and nuclear energy

As a union with thousands of members working in the energy industry—and with thousands more whose jobs depend on reliable and affordable energy across other sectors—the Boilermakers are acutely aware of the uncertain future of fossil fuels and nuclear power.

Concerns about carbon emissions and nuclear accidents have driven many governments, NGOs and climate activists to urge abandoning fossil and nuclear power as rapidly as possible.

A 100% green energy future risks a dark legacy for the planet

Much has been written about the disadvantages of wind and solar renewables in terms of their intermittency, their large footprint on land (and water), the extra costs to connect them to the energy grid, the requirement for duplicative back-up power sources, and other concerns. But as green energy advocates push to massively expand renewables across the globe, the potential for severe environmental and social harm comes more sharply into focus.

Capturing carbon is the future

We need to be realistic. We need to set smart and achievable targets. We need to have adult conversations. We need to discuss intelligently how we are going to meet Canada’s goal of reducing emissions by 40% come 2030.

The International Brotherhood of Boilermakers attended the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow, and came home with a strengthened mission and message on the environment:

Comment: Why carbon capture and storage is key

With the ongoing climate emergency, there’s a heightened need to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions through whatever means possible.

Despite this, carbon capture technologies have been labelled as a distraction from supporting renewable energies and as extending the life of the oil and gas industry. But this is a technology we cannot ignore.

Hydrogen energy is poised for extreme growth

"The critical debate over hydrogen development is how best to extract it at scale."

As we continue to follow energy-related developments that impact our members, the rapid growth of hydrogen production is of particular interest, with implications for Boilermaker jobs and the continued use of fossil fuels with carbon capture, use and storage (CCUS).

On infrastructure and clean energy, America must play to win

The Rural Electrification Act was signed into law 85 years ago this month. It was a visionary infrastructure program for the 20th century, the centerpiece of a federal energy investment strategy that brought growth and prosperity to the South, the West, and across rural America. Because of these investments, generations of Americans were wealthier, healthier and led better lives.

What Boilermakers seek in Biden’s climate policy

Way forward must include CCUS and the preservation—and growth—of good union jobs and pensions

Once President-elect Joe Biden has been inaugurated on Jan. 20, his administration will begin implementing a range of policies that will shape U.S. governance for the next four years, perhaps longer. 

The Biden climate policy, above all others, will directly impact Boilermaker jobs, pensions and the future of our union. It is critical, therefore, that we remain engaged as this policy unfolds and that we strongly communicate our needs and expectations.