Posted on December 6th, 2010 No comments
Of all the macroeconomic proposals put forward over the last two decades for consideration by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the most ridiculous has to be Carbon Trading.
To imagine that a market can be created for something that the industrialised country economies are highly dependent on is an hallucination.
Carbon Dioxide emissions are in lock-step with economic growth, the creation of liquidity, if not wealth. To try to price Carbon Dioxide emissions would be to attempt to give a negative value to a positive commodity. It just won’t work. Nobody will want to buy it. And if they’re forced to buy it, they won’t want to pay much for it. And nobody can think of a way to force the developed countries to pay for their Carbon Dioxide emissions.
Even before the “serious” negotiating week of Cancun begins, the Kyoto Protocol has been pronounced dead on arrival :-
Nobody ever said the “KP” was perfect – it only committed countries to a very small level of emissions cuts. Some commitment ! Few of the countries in the KP have taken their responsibilities to cut emissions seriously. And if they have, they’ve just outsourced them to China.
But the Son-of-Kyoto Post-Kyoto Protocol Protocol could have been something, you know, if the industrialised countries admitted they needed to back down significantly from rising and large emissions profiles – if developed nations had not tried to lean on the “flexible mechanisms” that effectively legalised offsetting their emissions with emissions reductions in other peoples’ countries.
It appears from Wikileaks that the United States of America have been scuppering the United Nations’s best efforts :-
“Secret diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks have revealed new details about how the United States manipulated last year’s climate talks in Copenhagen. The cables show how the United States sought dirt on nations opposed to its approach to tackling global warming, how financial and other aid was used by countries to gain political backing, and how the United States mounted a secret global diplomatic offensive to overwhelm opposition to the “Copenhagen Accord.”"
It wasn’t China’s fault, (or only China’s fault) as Mark Lynas and many other commentators have asserted :-
If, as reports state, the United States are continuing to use any leverage they can to push countries to accept the doomed Copenhagen Accord, there can be no progress on Climate Change.
We may have just found the real Climategate.
You cannot buy or sell the atmosphere.
There is only one solution – that is to displace High Carbon Energy with Low Carbon Energy and that means goodbye to Tar Sands, Shale Oil, Tight Gas, deepwater Petroleum, dirty Petroleum, Coal, Coal-to-Liquids, anything that you can dig out of the ground and burn.
We have to stop mining for energy.
And that has serious implications for a number of international energy corporations and state energy enterprises.
Unless this basic issue is addressed, we are all heading for hell and high water.
The Climate Change talks have been window dressing for unworkable hypothetical macroeconomic policies, and continue to reduce chair people to tears :-Be Prepared, Big Picture, Climate Change, Coal Hell, Emissions Impossible, Energy Change, Fossilised Fuels, Global Warming, Growth Paradigm, Major Shift, Media, No Pressure, Oil Change, Peak Emissions, Political Nightmare, Regulatory Ultimatum, Social Change, Tarred Sands Bali, Beyond Petroleum, Canada, Cancun, Christiana Figueres, Climategate, coal, Coal-to-Liquids, Copenhagen, Deepwater, Julian Assange, Petroleum, shale gas, shale oil, Tar Sands, UN, UNFCCC, United Nations, United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, United States, United States of America, Wikileaks, Yvo de Boer
Posted on October 5th, 2010 3 comments
If you, dear Reader, are a Republican American, and you are demographically “middle class”, and you support the Tea Party movement, you are likely to have been seriously deceived – by Big Energy. Or Big Mining.
Who are these “Big Diggers”, propagandising the naive, well-intentioned, right-wing citizens of the United States of America, so they don’t realise they’re thinking somebody else’s thoughts, shouting somebody else’s slogans, riding somebody else’s train ?Advertise Freely, Bait & Switch, Big Picture, Climate Change, Coal Hell, Disturbing Trends, Divide & Rule, Environmental Howzat, Fossilised Fuels, Global Warming, Growth Paradigm, Non-Science, Obamawatch, Peace not War, Petrolheads, Political Nightmare, Protest & Survive, Public Relations, Regulatory Ultimatum, Resource Curse, Social Change, Tarred Sands, Toxic Hazard, Unconventional Foul, Unnatural Gas, Unutterably Useless, Utter Futility, Vain Hope America, Big Diggers, Big Energy, Big Mining, Boston Tea Party, BP, BP America, Canada, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, employment, Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, Esso, ExxonMobil, gas shale, Gasoline, GOP, Grand Old Party, healthcare, insecurity, Koch, Koch Industries, lobbying, low wages, Marathon Oil, medical insurance, middle class, middle working class, North America, part time employment, part-time work, petrochemicals, Petroleum, precarity, propganda, Republican, Republican Party, Royal Dutch Shell, shale gas, Shell, Tar Sands, Tea Party, Texaco, Unconventional Gas, unemployment, United States of America, working middle class
Posted on August 23rd, 2010 No comments
We all love the inputs, but what about the outputs ?
Fossil Fuels have been providing an easy life and easy pickings for the citizens and enterprises of the industrialised world for some time.
People love their jet-fuelled lives. One man will move one kilometre from his home to a restaurant in two and a half metric tonnes of steel and glass believing he is admired for his larger-than-car-sized car. He will wear sunshades, and oil-slicked hair (if he has any) and sport a tan from his recent holiday over the ocean. A life of glory and feeling good about himself.
But what about the emissions ? What, indeed, about the environmental devastation at the places the Fossil Fuels (and metal and glass) were mined and refined and manufactured ?
What do we leave behind ?Be Prepared, Big Picture, Burning Money, Climate Change, Coal Hell, Corporate Pressure, Emissions Impossible, Energy Revival, Environmental Howzat, Financiers of the Apocalypse, Fossilised Fuels, Global Warming, Incalculable Disaster, Marine Gas, Nuclear Nuisance, Nuclear Shambles, Oil Change, Peace not War, Peak Energy, Peak Oil, Petrolheads, Protest & Survive, Regulatory Ultimatum, Renewable Resource, Resource Curse, Sandstorm, Social Change, Tarred Sands, Toxic Hazard, Unconventional Foul, Unnatural Gas Alberta, Canada, coal, coal bed methane, Coal Mine, coal mine tailing ponds, coal mine tailings, environmental legacy, environmental mess, gas shale, Marine Gas, Natural Gas, Nuclear Disempowerment, Nuclear Power, Nuclear Shambles, Oil, oil field, oil shale, Petroleum, shale gas, shale oil, sub-sea gas, tailing ponds
Posted on August 19th, 2010 No comments
Nick Clegg, the British Deputy Prime Minister says that the international response to the catastrophic flooding in Pakistan is “absolutely pitiful” :-
People won’t be moved. There’s no use hoping for an outpouring of charitable giving and energetic aid organisation – the world is suffering too many ongoing parallel disasters to be able to scramble effectively for this – the biggest ever (probably).
A similar situation exists with Climate Change policy, or rather the incredible inertia against taking the obvious first steps towards meaningful Carbon Dioxide emissions reductions.
People are too busy with their Facebook, their Twitter, their own personal financial nemeses (is that the plural of “nemesis”, really ?) to be able to form a coherent “movement”, as Bill McKibben, Al Gore and others wish us to mobilise into :-
“Why has extreme weather failed to heat up climate debate? The world is experiencing the hottest weather on record but politicians have failed to respond. They need a wake-up call…”Advancing Africa, Climate Change, Disturbing Trends, Energy Revival, Extreme Weather, Floodstorm, Global Singeing, Global Warming, Heatwave, Incalculable Disaster, Media, Neverending Disaster, Political Nightmare, Regulatory Ultimatum, Social Change Canada, China, how many countries do you need disasters in to say the Climate is Changing ?, Niger, Pakistan, Russia
Posted on August 18th, 2010 7 comments
[ UPDATE FROM JOABBESS.COM : ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND, EDINBURGH, CLIMATE CAMP SITE HAS BEEN TAKEN. ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATION FROM firstname.lastname@example.org, Wed, Aug 18, 2010 at 9:59 PM : "Site taken! People needed NOW! At 9.15PM tonight Climate Camp took the site on RBS HQ. Get on site as fast as you can! Defence help urgently needed. Come to RBS Gogarburn Gardens, off Gogar Station Rd. More info later. x" ]
Al Gore has been telling all the young people, and well, all of us, really, to protest, in public, to make a downright law-unabiding nuisance of ourselves :-
“Gore calls for major protests on government’s climate change inaction…In a post on his personal blog headlined “The Movement We Need”…”
Well, it won’t work to call people out onto the street. Most people are too busy credit-crunching, wage-slaving or favour-scraping to be able to commit to a short-term, potentially self-defeating public display of annoyance, frustration and shrill demands.
And if people do come out to the big protests, it won’t achieve much. News reports can be swept into the trash. Activists can be swept into holding facilities. Politicians can conveniently ignore anything that isn’t violent.
Drop the loud-hailers and home-made placards, I say, and do something more…focussed.
The Climate Camp want to target the Royal Bank of Scotland for financing Coal power plants and Tar Sands oil projects, which are very bad things to be doing, and smacks of huge corporate irresponsibility, considering the bank is largely owned by the British taxpayer, and I say, if you can’t make the camp (and I can’t for reasons which I shall not go into just now), do something about money in other ways instead.
What’s your money doing ? Which oppressive regimes in oil-rich countries is it supporting ? Which Fossil Fuel companies trashing your Environment do your bank support ? Why not switch your money to an ethical financial organisation ? Why don’t we all try to do this at the same time ? “Crowd-banking” could have an impact, you never know until you try.
Let’s pick, say, Monday 23rd August 2010. And let’s all spend our way out of Climageddon together on that day. Transfer your money to an ethical bank, or pledge to do so. Phone your bank and tell them you’re leaving for a sustainable bank.
Other actions possibly useful :-
1. Refuse to buy Fossil Fuels for a day.
2. Refuse to use any hot water for one day (most hot water is produced by burning Fossil Fuels). It’s summer in the Northern Hemisphere – come on – a cool shower won’t hurt you.
3. Don’t spend any money on anything that had Petroleum-based plastic or Natural Gas-based chemicals in its production – which would rule out 85% of non-food purchases, I reckon.
4. If you’re working for a company or an organisation who have anything to do with the Energy industry, make a point of asking your boss, or their boss, or the Chief Executive or something what the company/organisation intends to do about moving the whole business to Renewable Energy.
5. One short telephone call could have you moving from burning Coal for your home electricity to a Green Energy account.
This is not a riot – but it is an emergency, and the response should match the scale of the problem.
Our Climate – Not for Sale.Be Prepared, Behaviour Changeling, Big Picture, Burning Money, Climate Change, Coal Hell, Corporate Pressure, Emissions Impossible, Energy Revival, Fossilised Fuels, Global Warming, Growth Paradigm, Low Carbon Life, Peace not War, Petrolheads, Political Nightmare, Protest & Survive, Public Relations, Regulatory Ultimatum, Resource Curse, Social Change, Unconventional Foul, Unnatural Gas, Voluntary Behaviour Change Action, Beyond Petroleum, Beyond Psychotherapy, Big Switch, BP, British Petroleum, Broken Philosophy, Camp, Canada, Climate, Climate Camp, Climate Change, direct action, Edinburgh, Green Power, money, O Canada, Oil Sands, RBS, Royal Bank of Scotland, Switch banks, Switch electricity provider, Switch provider, Tar Sands
Posted on August 17th, 2010 1 comment
Welcome to the slightly revised and updated Hockey Stick :-
Yes, the Earth’s temperature is warming at a very fast pace. No, even though the statistical models here may be a little questionable, the graph still looks the same, more or less, to the sterling work of Michael Mann et al. (et al. = et alia = “and the others”).
Quelle surprise…pas !
(I included a little French in here because Steve McIntyre, the most infamous Global Warming septic…oops, sorry, “sceptic”…nooo, “skeptic”… is Canadian, a famously bilingual country, or rather a country with a bilingual state, but I’m not implying that “bilingual” means “speaking with forked tongue”).
Posted on August 10th, 2010 No comments
One of the worst ideas that anybody has ever had is to pull heaps of toxic chemicals out of the ground and spread them over the surface of one of the few countries that will remain habitable after the onset of deep Climate Change.
If the Global Warming doesn’t get you, then the mercury from the Tars Sands tailing ponds sure will !
“Oil sands toxins growing rapidly : Nathan VanderKlippe : Published on Monday, Aug. 09, 2010 : Canada’s oil sands mining operations produce vast and fast-growing quantities of deadly substances, including mercury, heavy metals and arsenic, new data released by Environment Canada shows. The information on pollutants sheds new light on the environmental toll exacted by Canada’s bid to extract oil from bitumen, showing in stark relief how many nasty substances are being laid on the northern Alberta landscape in the process – and how quickly those are growing. In the past four years, the volume of arsenic and lead produced and deposited in tailings ponds by the country’s bitumen mines – run by Syncrude Canada Ltd., Suncor Energy Inc., Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. and Royal Dutch Shell PLC – has increased by 26 per cent. Quantities of some other substances have increased at even faster rates. The companies also released huge amounts of pollutants into the air last year, including 70,658 tonnes of volatile organic compounds, which can damage the function of human organs and nervous systems, and 111,661 tonnes of sulphur dioxide, a key contributor to acid rain…The numbers “are just ridiculously huge,” said Justin Duncan, a staff lawyer with Ecojustice…”
Unconventional fossil fuels are just such a liability – using up precious freshwater resources and depositing toxic waste just about everywhere.
Shale Gas (or Gas Shale) operations are reported to be polluting underground water tables. Now, that’s a clever thing !
“EPA moves NY drilling hearing, expecting crowds : By MARY ESCH : ALBANY, N.Y. : In anticipation of as many as 8,000 people at a public hearing on natural gas drilling, the Environmental Protection Agency announced Monday that it was moving it from Binghamton University to a Syracuse convention center 65 miles north. The hearing is the fourth and last by the EPA around the country to get public comment on its study of hydraulic fracturing of natural gas wells. Critics say the technology, which blasts chemical-laced water into the earth, could poison water supplies. The industry says it’s been used safely for decades. The EPA said 300 people have signed up to speak at Thursday’s sessions and 1,200 are expected to attend…Advancements in horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, significantly increased yield from shale gas wells and led to the current natural gas boom, starting with the Barnett Shale in Texas. The technology has drawn intense scrutiny since the focus of gas drilling companies has shifted in recent years to the Marcellus Shale, a massive rock formation underlying New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia. Environmental groups, residents and civic leaders fear potential contamination of watersheds in the densely populated region if fracking isn’t more tightly regulated. Fracking was exempted from the Safe Drinking Water Act in 2005 after an earlier EPA study declared fracking wasn’t a threat to water supplies. That study has since been criticized as flawed. The new EPA study, to be completed in 2013, could lead to new federal regulations. However, the industry says state regulation is sufficient and has worked well…”
Posted on December 15th, 2009 3 comments
It appears that the Yes Men have staged a huge coup at the Copenhagen Climate Change talks. First they issued a Press Release saying that Canada was going to offer 40% Carbon Emissions reductions. And then they held a Press Conference with a delegate from Uganda to herald the news – see the video here :-
“Canada: We Accept Concept of Climate Debt : Canada gives details of new “Climate Debt Mechanism,” announces details of pilot program in Africa. Ugandan delegation lauds proposal.
Peter Jensen 14/12/2009 13:20″