Google, Boston Review Promote Rolling Blackouts to Cut CO2 Emissions

Among the top Google News search results today for “climate change” is an article published by the Boston Review calling for Third World-style electricity blackouts in the United States to fight climate change. According to the article, American households are unnecessarily spoiled by experiencing an average of only six hours per year without electricity. Instead, government should impose frequent “planned interruptions” of power to force households to use less electricity and reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

The Google-promoted article, titled “To Save the Climate, Give Up the Demand for Constant Electricity,” argues that “Each household demanding continuous electricity marginally exacerbates the climate crisis.”

“Waiting to ensure uninterrupted power for everyone as we transition away from fossil fuels will cost too much time – and too many lives,” the article adds.

A better model, according to the article, is the unreliable power grid in Zimbabwe. Wistfully recalling his days living in Zimbabwe under brutal former dictator Robert Mugabe, the author of the Boston Review article writes,

“ZESA [Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority] planned a rotation among the suburbs. Generally, that meant losing power for half a day per week. The power cut might have been shorter, had people not circumvented it by using their electric stoves immediately before or after. Still, rationing residences allowed hospitals and other essential services to keep running.”

The author follows up by saying the rest of the United States should deliberately subject itself to similarly unreliable electricity that has plagued Puerto Rico in the aftermath of 2017 Hurricane Maria.

“Zimbabwe and Puerto Rico thus provide models for what we might call pause-full electricity. Admittedly, neither Zimbabweans nor Puerto Ricans chose to accept this rationing. And in Zimbabwe, official incompetence has reduced electricity to a nearly unbearable degree. Still, Zimbabwe’s past and Puerto Rico’s potential indicate just and feasible ways of living amid intermittency. With a pause, life goes on. By abiding that interlude—by shedding their load—people can preserve life near and far.”

This isn’t merely fringe thought among the climate activist movement. It appears in the Boston Review and is promoted among the very top Google News search results under “climate change.” The Climate Left desires electricity rationing and frequent Third World-style electricity blackouts to subjugate the populace and fight global warming.

That is the choice between climate alarmism and climate realism.

[Photo courtesy of Diego Grez, Wikimedia Commons.]

James Taylor
James Taylor
James Taylor is the President of the Heartland Institute. Taylor is also director of Heartland's Arthur B. Robinson Center for Climate and Environmental Policy. Taylor is the former managing editor (2001-2014) of Environment & Climate News, a national monthly publication devoted to sound science and free-market environmentalism.

Related Articles


  1. Just wait. When electricity becomes erratic and costs skyrocket and fuel becomes expensive & often unavailable, folks will START paying attention. The energy transition envisioned under the Green New “Dealers” promotes a regressive cost structure which hurts lower income & disadvantaged communities most and energy scarcity will (ultimately) not be a winning formula. We will all miss fossil fuels when they are gone since we have no CLEAN, SCALABLE & cost effective alternative to quickly replace 80% of our nations primary energy. All the “aspirational” proponents of the GND are about to get a hard lesson about the physics associated with energy imperatives. Too bad a lot of unnecessary PAIN will be inflicted since we can’t seem to have a rational, thoughtful, fact based discussion about a national energy policy…

  2. The Boston Review article sounds almost like a satire. You’ve chosen the “best” bits, but it is all a bit looney–an extreme version of what academics who consider average people “deplorables’ might say. BTW, what, exactly, does Google-promoted mean?

  3. I would love electricity meters to be able to turn off the for those people who want only ‘green energy’. Energy customers could pick a ‘green plan’ or a ‘normal plan’.
    The green plan could be made more attractive by charging a bit less for power, in exchange for having to endure random load shedding when demand exceeded supply.

    I think I know how popular the green plan would be after the first year. 😉

  4. There’s a solution for the problem: everyone who believes this crap cuts their electric use by 40%, or self-turns off the electricity for 6 hours. If they’re not willing, then I believe their virtue signaling is just that.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Must Reads

Latest Publication