A review and commentary on topical matters concerning the science, economics, and governance associated with climate change developments.
1 April 2020
Coronavirus and climate change policy
To reduce greenhouse gas emissions, Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) required vehicle suppliers to increase their 2026Corporate Average Fuel Economy to 55 miles per gallon. This is being reduced to 40 miles per gallon, which is however still an increaseon current levels.
The USEPAis dismantling its requirements that new factories and power plant must have a permit to show their emissions will reflect “best available control technology" or the “lowest achievable emission rate”. Dr. Craig Idso is leading apetitionto the EPA to repeal its “Endangerment Finding” for Greenhouse Gases, saying how "the projected risks and adverse consequences of rising greenhouse gases are failing to materialize”.
Czech Premiersays EU should ditch its green energy policy in view of coronavirus. Other indications of a return to common sense come fromBavaria’s Minister President Soderwho calls forthe suspension of the electricity tax and EEG levy. The gung-ho climate alarmists in the Dutch Government have already postponed their “Urgenda” plans for additional action. In North America, Manitobais to delay implementing its $25 per tonne carbon tax.
One buffoon we finance, the IEA’sFatih Birolsays we should use this as an opportunity to expedite the transition, a view supported by climate zealot and subsidy seeker, Australia’sRoss Garnaut.
Leftgreen groupsare horror-struck that Japan's “addiction to coal is watering down the efforts being made by the rest of the world”. Japan disappointed the activists because it plans to maintain its 26 per cent 2030 reduction (based on 2013 emissions).Russiaplans to reduce 2030 emissions by one third of its Soviet-style bloated1990 levels but its plans are an increase on current levels.
FormerPresident of the Socialist International,U.N. Secretary-GeneralAntónio Guterreshas faced the reality that climate change action will have to be deferred but, absurdly, sees theParis Agreementas lighting the recovery road.
The coronavirus is at least killing one wasteful green initiative – thereusable plastic bagthat legislation enforced upon us, which is far more germ-prone than the one-trip bag.
Publicity starvedGreta Thunbergrecovering from Covid-19, says tackling it proves we can fight climate change. She is upstaged by Eco-fascists who claim to represent Extinction Rebellion and have posters proclaiming, “Corona is the cure. Humans are the disease.”
Does anyone seriously think it will be newsworthy?
Environmental regulatory barriers and their costs
Less than3 per cent of Australia’semissions are being offset under the federal government’s emissions reduction fund. This means there is a yawning gap between thenet-zero challengeand the 530 million tonnes a year CO2-equivalent emissions. Australia’s Commonwealth Government currently spends $4.4 billion a year on abatement measures.
Aside from the $16.5 billion Adani coal mine, which took 9 years to clear regulatory barriers, 6 other Australian projects have been tied up by lawfare, including a port and a salmon farm. The Institute of Public Affairs findsactivist groupshave delayed 28 projects between 2000 and 2019, with an estimated value of over $65bn.
California cities — big consumers of fossil fuels themselves — asked a U.S. Court of Appeals to pin the blame for global warming on BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil and Shell. The cities hoped to soak the companies for billions of dollars of damages. Their case is beingrejected.
Iwroteabout a story in theGuardiandemonstrating the impotence of government against the Deep State machinery that it nominally controls. Energy Minister Taylor tried to re-allocate subsidy funding to coal generation, but the committee he established to do this rejected any such proposals.
Climate predictions gone wrong
In 1998, the 1196 islands of theMaldiveswere predicted by the Politically Correct UN to be underwater by 2018. They are still protruding and getting 4 new airports. Onto the next confected scare.
CSIRO representatives were humiliated bySenator Canavan, in hearings before the Australian Senate, after they tried to omit previous years’ statements indicating no link between bushfires and climate change. The senator also showed the supposed experts that warming does not bring a decrease in rainfall.
Grant seeking scientists claim theGreat Barrier Reefsuffers yet another “disastrous bleaching”.Peter Ridd, wrongly dismissed from his James Cook University professorial post for “uncollegially” demonstrating such claims to be false, sets them straight. He shows, “Corals are more able to deal with temperature changes than virtually any other organism.”
Chief ExecutiveBernard Looneysaid BP has agreed to draft a shareholder resolution to be voted on next year that would enshrine its pledge to reach carbon neutrality by 2050. That’s not good enough forBritish American Tobaccowhich is to save lives by becoming carbon neutral by 2030.
Warmer oceans are said to bring greater risks ofwhalescolliding with ships. Perhaps it’s provident that ocean warming isnegligibleand declining trade means be fewer ships .
Chris Kennyreports the 28 of March was “the most successful Earth Hour of all time. The only problem is that it has been going on all week.”
In March I published the following climate-related articles: