Monthly Archives: July 2008

This is how ‘targets’ hit back

The LNG export industry—one of the most impor­tant com­po­nents of Australia’s resources export industries—does not qual­i­fy for emis­sion per­mit exemp­tions because it falls below an arti­fi­cial thresh­old in the Green Paper on reduc­ing “Car­bon Pol­lu­tion”. This is dumb (euphemism) and will, no doubt, be ‘fixed’. But it is an entire­ly typ­i­cal tar­get-hur­dle fos­ter­ing tar­get-man­age­ment (in place of pol­i­cy com­pli­ance), rock­et­ing lob­by­ing costs, and end­less tar­get refine­ment and ad-hoc­cery.

Analy­sis by the Aus­tralian Petro­le­um Pro­duc­tion and Explo­ration Asso­ci­a­tion and by Deutsche Bank experts con­firmed Mr Voelte’s cal­cu­la­tion that LNG would not qual­i­fy for per­mits under the Government’s pro­posed for­mu­la.”  extract from: The Aus­tralian

If tar­gets worked… the Sovi­et Union would still be in the LNG busi­ness, too.

Another Galilean ‘dissenter’

David Evans, ex-Green­House Office:

The world has spent $50 bil­lion on glob­al warm­ing since 1990, and we have not found any actu­al evi­dence that car­bon emis­sions cause glob­al warm­ing … Com­put­er mod­els and the­o­ret­i­cal cal­cu­la­tions are not evi­dence, they are just the­o­ry.”  extract from: The Aus­tralian

Sub-prime not a failure of ‘globalization’

I not­ed my dis­agree­ment with Dani Rodrik’s view that the ‘sub-prime’ loans cri­sis sig­nalled a fail­ure of inter­na­tion­al coor­di­na­tion in finan­cial mar­ket reg­u­la­tion. Here’s an his­to­ri­an of the Fed­er­al Reserve who more accu­rate­ly iden­ti­fies the ori­gins of the cri­sis.

So what can tax­pay­ers expect from an increase in the Fed’s dis­cre­tionary author­i­ty over invest­ment banks? The like­ly answer is res­cues, delays and lax super­vi­sion – fol­lowed by tax­pay­er-financed bailouts.”  extract from: Allan Meltzer in the WSJ

Argument for ‘least cost’ emissions policy

Paul Kelly’s accu­rate assess­ment of the realdia­bol­i­cal dilem­ma’. Read the full arti­cle.

[Over­shoot­ing on emis­sions con­trols] is a lethal risk for Rudd. His Gov­ern­ment is a believ­er in mul­ti­lat­er­al ide­al­ism and the moral cause of mit­i­ga­tion. The truth, how­ev­er, is that mul­ti­lat­er­al­ism is in seri­ous retreat and ide­al­ism in cli­mate change is the fraud of our age. Many senior Aus­tralian offi­cials dis­count the hope of a gen­uine glob­al agree­ment …The full suc­cess of our pol­i­cy is beyond our con­trol.

It leads to a final con­clu­sion before the green paper launch: any action tak­en by Aus­tralia must be on a ‘least cost basis’. This is the real jus­ti­fi­ca­tion for emis­sions trad­ing. There is no room for play­ing pol­i­tics with mit­i­gat­ing pol­i­cy, there­by lift­ing its cost to Australia’s econ­o­my …”  extract from: The Aus­tralian   (empha­sis added)

It’s not just China, India

Germany’s Finance Min­istry, too, is crit­i­cal of a plan to cut emis­sions that is more grad­ual than pro­posed in Kevin Rudd’s Green Paper.

The min­istry was par­tic­u­lar­ly crit­i­cal of the EU’s goal to cut the quo­ta of emis­sions trad­ing per­mits by 21 per­cent, com­pared to 2005 lev­els, say­ing this would cost Ger­many both jobs and growth.”  extract from: Deutsche Welle

The G-Other

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I won­der if they’re any bet­ter at mean­ing­ful col­lab­o­ra­tion than the G-8? No sign of it in this offi­cial snap­shot tak­en in Sap­poro, Japan, before their meet­ing with the G-8 in July, 2008.

Climate cure more costly than disease?

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Hen­ry Ergas joins the crit­i­cism of the alarmism and inter­est­ed­ness of the Gar­naut Report rec­om­men­da­tions.

In short, this is a report that costs the prob­lem, but says lit­tle or noth­ing about the costs of its pro­posed solu­tion. As for its pro­posed solu­tion, it does not even seek to sys­tem­at­i­cal­ly com­pare it with alter­na­tives: rather, it acts as if the only options were com­plete inac­tion on the one hand, or its ver­sion of an ETS on the oth­er. And for all of its 500-plus pages, it is at times uncom­fort­ably thin on analy­sis, appeal­ing to fears and hopes rather than like­li­hoods and real­i­ties.”  extract from: The Aus­tralian news­pa­per

The image (click thumb­nail) shows the sum­ma­ry table of costs from Chap­ter 9 of the Gar­naut Report.