Friday, August 10, 2012

Climate Policy Network Today


Former UK chancellor Nigel Lawson believes it is wrong for the West to use environmental concerns as a weapon to beat China. He argues if Europe or the United States respond to the current economic crisis by putting up protectionist barriers against China and other developing nations it could lead to a 1930s-scale depression. "I think it is important to maintain globalization and an open world trading system. We don't want to see a wave of restrictions. I am hopeful there won't be because everyone is aware of how disastrous the 1930s were," he says.  --Andrew Moody, China Daily, 10 August 2012 -

China's ambitions are large; by 2020, the nation's goal is for shale gas to provide 6 percent of its massive energy needs. In its 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-2015), China set the goal of producing 229.5 billion cubic feet (6.5 billion cubic meters) of shale gas by 2015. Its aim is to ramp up shale production at least ten-fold between 2015 and 2020. A preliminary EIA assessment of world shale reserves last year indicated that China has the world's largest "technically recoverable" resources—with an estimated 1,275 trillion cubic feet. That's 20 percent of world resources, and far more than the 862 trillion cubic feet in estimated U.S. shale gas stores. --Catherine T. Yang, National Geographic News, 7 August 2012 -

Environmentalists won a moratorium in April 2010 on fracking in South Africa, and the nation is building two new coal plants to help close a gap between electricity demand and supply. Virtually none of South Africa's deep shale gas is being developed, in large part due to tragically misguided environmental advocacy. With fracking stopped and gas locked under ground, coal is being used to meet South Africa's energy needs. Indeed, coal power plants generate about 90% of South Africa's electricity today and may well continue to do so. --John Hanger's Fact of the Day, 6 August 2012 -

Poland will stand firm against reform of the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS), the country’s environment minister has said, and he is confident other countries will back Poland’s position in the negotiations. Polish environment minister Marcin Korolec also said that Europe should not move ahead of the rest of the world in its effort to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and should adhere to international climate policy. --Elza Holmstedt Pell, Environmental Finance, 9 August 2012 -

Robert Manne may well see in James Hansen a reborn St Francis of Assisi but all I see is another Uri Geller. He may see climate scientists as the most noble and selfless conclave since the Knights of the Roundtable but what I see are a bunch of rent seekers looking for the next government grant. Manne and the rest of the global warming crowd will have to be a lot more convincing than they have so far been before I sign on to a program that will put at risk a very great deal that I care about in the social order we have taken many centuries to create and to do so in exchange for no obvious benefit of any kind that I so far have been able to see. --Steven Kates, Quadrant Online, 9 August 2012 -

So this is the kind of background we ageing conservative white males bring to the global warming debate. In my view, the world is a better place because of this scepticism. We probe and mistrust all of those gung ho science types who think that their creaky shifting models are all that’s needed for the rest of us to fall into line with their recommendations. We have heard it all before. We are not buying this on the say so of a bunch of climate scientists who are no more informed about the future than computer scientists were in 1999 or the Club of Rome in the 1970s or Paul Ehrlich in the 1960s. You have models and you have your beliefs. Fine, but let’s really test them, make sure they stand up under the pressures that they need to withstand if we are going to take the kinds of drastic actions you seem to recommend.  --Steven Kates, Quadrant Online, 9 August 2012 -

Hansen's paper has been quoted in hundreds, if not thousands, of media outlets and newspapers and has garnered the praise of many environmental advocacy groups. The problem? Their conclusions are demonstrably false and their characterization of the science and statistics are deceptive at best. A very limited, but highly visible, group of scientists like Hansen are choosing to tell a story that is not supported by the facts, with a media that is happy to amplify such claims. --Cliff Mass, 9 August 2012 -

Cliff Mass is no climate skeptic. But to his credit he thinks politicized, agenda-driven scientists like James Hansen, and the credulous media that always give credence to every poorly reasoned claim, do more harm than good. Like Al Gore, reckless scientists like Hansen are the climate skeptic’s best friend. --Steven Hayward, PowerLine, 9 August 2012

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