FACT: Solar & Wind Don’t Manufacture Anything – Oil & Gas Do

May 23, 2023

Originally published by Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (May 22, 2023) – The challenge: Replacing the supply chain that supports humanity

Those who advocate for “leave it in the ground” and the elimination of all fossil fuels are, quite literally, bonkers. They are either ignorant of the facts, or (worse) they know the facts yet intentionally ignore them. We’d like to share the facts with you today. Your modern life is made possible solely through fossil fuels. Period. The products you use daily (including reading these words on a computer or phone) are manufactured from oil and gas (fossil fuels). Without fossil fuels, modern life is over. Done. We go back to living like the pioneers. No cars or airplanes. No plastic tubing and no life support machines in hospitals. No modern conveniences of any kind. It’s all gone.

Here’s a sobering FACT, something incontrovertible and 100% true: So-called renewable energy like solar and wind generate electricity and that’s it. They don’t make the products that electricity operates. Only oil and natural gas make the actual products!

Without products to power, there’s no reason to generate electricity. Even the power lines that flow electricity to your home and business are themselves covered in (protected by) plastic sheathing that is made from oil and gas! Without oil and gas, you can’t even flow electricity!

Ronald Stein is an engineer, senior policy advisor on energy literacy for CFACT (Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow, a Washington, D.C. think tank), and co-author of the Pulitzer Prize-nominated book, “Clean Energy Exploitations.” We’ve brought you a few of Stein’s previous columns. He is brilliant.

In a CFACT post yesterday, Stein asks a salient question: How do you replace the supply chain if you shut down fossil energy? He talks about the fact that solar and wind generate electricity–but they don’t (and can’t) create products. Oil and gas creates actual products.

Only a handful of individuals have ever seen or touched crude oil, but every one of the 8 billion on this planet is enjoying the products made from the oil derivatives manufactured from that black gold.

Chemical products, such as plastics, solvents, medical supplies, and fertilizers, are essential for supporting modern lifestyles.

The world is trying to transition away from fossil fuels, but the ruling class are not yet cognizant of the limitations of solar and wind. The elephant in the room that no one wants to talk about is that wind and solar only generate electricity but manufacture absolutely nothing for society. This 1-minute video is short, educational, and entertaining and has already been viewed by more than 800,000 on social media:


Over the last 200 years when the world populated from 1 to 8 billion, we learned that crude oil is virtually useless, unless it’s manufactured (refineries) into oil derivatives that are the basis of more than 6,000 products in our daily lives that did not exist before the 1900’s, and the fuels to move the heavy-weight and long-range needs of more than 50,000 jets moving people and products, and more than 50,000 merchant ships for global trade flows, and the military and space programs.

Ridding the world of fossil fuels to help achieve net zero emissions without a replacement supply chain for the products and fuels now derived from crude oil will impact the 8 billion on this planet in negative ways:

  • A massive reduction in reliable source of products and fuels now manufactured from crude oil, leading to a society in which we are regularly left freezing in the dark, resulting in at least millions of dead in cold countries that impose net-zero.
  • A dangerous reduction in the availability (and so a huge increase in the cost) of all the products we use in the modern world that derive from petroleum such as plastics, paints, pharmaceuticals, etc.
  • A huge reduction in the food supply, leading to mass starvation in countries that impose net-zero if all nitrogen fertilizers are banned.
  • For those who survive the above outcomes, a financial collapse including a deep depression and a consequent collapse in our standard of living and, with that, a huge reduction in environmental protection because we no longer have the wherewithal of the products and fuels needed to engage in environmental protection and are forced to rely on dirty energy sources such as wood (goodbye forests), garbage, dung, etc.
  • For those who survive the above, significant social unrest, skyrocketing crime, and the likely consequent imposition of martial law with a removal of our basic freedoms, in those countries that impose net-zero.
  • With the collapse in the economy, there would be a serious weakening of our military deterrence and consequent emboldening of our adversaries who do not go net zero (China, etc.) to engage in invasions at will, possibly culminating in the direct invasion and collapse of western democracies.

Leaders from wealthy countries omit from conversation the extraordinary social bene?ts of CO2 and fossil fuels. Carbon dioxide, including that from the burning of fossil fuels, serves as plant food that increases crop production and enables the feeding of more people. CO2, as well as the greenhouse gases of methane and nitrous oxide, help to keep Earth at temperatures conducive to life; without them, people would suffer. Fossil fuels are economical and abundant sources of energy necessary for modern societies and are critical feedstocks for everyday products and transportation fuels, and fertilizers and pesticides that support the lives of billions of people.

The ruling class omits from conversations the disastrous consequences of reducing fossil fuels and CO2 emissions to Net Zero. It cannot be overemphasized that eliminating fossil fuels and implementing Net Zero policies and actions mean the elimination of the fossil fuel-derived 6,000 products that are the foundation of today’s lifestyles and economies, and the nitrogen fertilizers and pesticides that will result in about half the world’s population not having enough food to eat.

For the sake of the 8 billion now living on this planet, before we jump out of an airplane without a tested parachute, the world needs to have a plan to be able to support the demands of the population on this globe for all the products and infrastructures that exist today that did not exist a few hundred years ago.

Where is our elite leaders’ plan to keep the planet’s eight billion alive and well with the products now being manufactured from crude oil?

In summary, Life without oil is NOT AS SIMPLE AS YOU MAY THINK as renewable energy is only intermittent electricity from breezes and sunshine and NEITHER wind turbines, nor solar panels, can manufacture anything for society.*

Be sure to watch the one-minute video (above) of Stein talking about what renewables and fossil fuels can and can’t create.