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.