JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Penn and Teller on the religion called Recycling

We could have so much fun doing a show like this Busting the Religion called Climate Change.

Why recycle? “It feels good”

The show uses a few more crass words than it needs to, apart from that it’s a lighthearted satire that kills quite a few sacred cows. The first 5 minutes sets it up with a bunch of people telling us that believe it makes them a better community player, a better mom, a good example for their kids, and helps the planet etc etc.  Then Penn and Teller do some creative experiments on unsuspecting victims of the Recycling Religion.

This so lends itself to climate change. We could lead people through a series of questions where they agree to statements revealing they believe windtowers stop storms and solar panels hold back the tide.

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Penn and Teller on the religion called Recycling, 9.1 out of 10 based on 101 ratings

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111 comments to Penn and Teller on the religion called Recycling

  • #
    Safetyguy66

    Yeah that’s a good one. They have done quite a few complete dissections of green garbage, of all kinds.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mHsk7yoKa4I <– AGW alarmism

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    • #
      Yonniestone

      I’ve seen most of the Bulls#$t episodes Safety and while amusing they offer some information that’s worth looking into.

      Funny to see the Wikipedia page on Penn and Teller Bulls#$t where they describe them as “Its format consisted of debating political topics, usually from a naturalist libertarian capitalist point of view (the political philosophy espoused by both Penn and Teller)”
      That’s probably about as polite as you’ll get from left winger’s when describing people who like to question things freely. :)

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    • #
      Matty

      Yeah , that’s a good one Safety, on the Climste BoollSh!te. A little dated now perhaps. Could do with updating, with the Pause, the Hokeyschtick, the Glaciers, and the various gates since Climategate. These guys must have been onto it early, pre- the turning point of COP 2009

      20

  • #
    Victor Ramirez

    “…because this is paper preferred by trees.”

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  • #
    TdeF

    Things are never as they seem. It is all about appearances for Greens.

    There is a linear megafactory in Portugal which processes 1 million specially grown Australian gum trees a year. The plant itself is about a mile long and fully automatic, full trees in one end and reams of paper out the other. Incredibly efficient and no ‘virgin’ forest. So why recycle? In the US recycling at $8billion amount 300 million people is $24 a person per year, but Americans hate to pay for nothing.

    The absurdity is not to be able to just burn the paper for energy at the end of the process. It is only another power source instead of fossilized plants. Methane collection makes perfect sense too. Plastics can be burned or converted back to oil. Surely the total volume of waste is reduced and that is a reasonable objective? Nothing to do with space, just a fundamental distrust of people paid to dispose of waste.

    The point seems to be that no one tells the truth. They believe what they want to believe. So people are told CO2 is manufactured poison, a byproduct of evil industry. No one points out that 25% of your breath is CO2 and that is true for every living thing. So life is evil. Self hate appears to be the hallmark of science ignorant Greens.

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    • #
      TdeF

      You have to feel sorry for the farmers in Tasmania who grew special paper trees on their land for the paper mill which is closed but they are now by law unable to cut down the trees, so the arable land is lost to them and the community. Australia needs food and power and for food you need grasses. Man cannot eat trees and grasses are equally good for photosynthesis but the Shaman tree worshippers rule. The ecological battle between trees and grasses goes back billions of years, but the Greens have taken sides and want elves and fairies in their forests, especially the loony Green senators from the tiny states of Tasmania and South Australia.

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      • #
        Safetyguy66

        As I said recently, after ruining every industry in Tassie, the Greens always held out the wizened, organic carrot of tourism as a form of human endeavour for employment that they just may be able to tolerate. Well when we reached the thin end of the wedge recently, they showed their true colours and even rejected tourism.

        http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2015/s4162694.htm

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        • #

          I do think the Tasmanians have a big future designing government brochures promoting green jobs – like exciting careers in brochure design. Of course, the brochures will have to be produced in China.

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        • #
          James Murphy

          Is it coincidence or correlation that “one in two Tasmanians aged 15 to 74 are functionally illiterate, and more than half are functionally innumerate” according to a report by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. There is a newer version, but i doubt these stats could change markedly in 1 year.

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          • #
            a happy little debunker

            According to Leo, ‘Tasmania is a land of dregs, bogans and third-generation morons’

            But, this comment came from an embittered rent-seeker, unhappy with the largess he had been offered. Had he immersed himself in our culture (rather than trying to immerse us, in his), he would have realised there are no ‘Bogans’ in Tasmania – only ‘Chiggas’.

            As for commenting on the ‘Oh, so common’ intellect of the folk above the demarcation around Campbell Town. That argument has been going on for near, 150 years. (Who is James Boags? Who bloody cares?)

            If one has to be disparaging, let it be for something important – like beer!

            40

        • #
          Obie

          How are all of the true “GREEN” tourists to get to Tasmania without using fossil fuel? Ah yes,
          swim. (Do I need the sarc tag?)

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    • #
      Safetyguy66

      Fair enough, then it wont surprise you to hear that was in fact the toned down version.

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  • #
    jorgekafkazar

    I once got a tour of a recycling center–the place with the long belt going 3 mph past a bunch of sad sacks frantically trying to separate good trash from bad trash before it all went into the mega-dumpster. And that’s where 90% of it wemt: into a big bin at the end of the belt and on to…TA-DA!!!…the landfill! The guys on the line were trying to salvage aluminium cans and big pieces of corrugated cardboard, and damn little else.

    At another company, the boss was a recycling nut. We had three wastebaskets at every desk: black, grey, and blue–general trash, used copy paper, and magazines/newspapers. I had this strong suspicion that it all ended up in the same place. I found out later that, indeed, there was only one dumpster behind the building, and it all went in there, every bit of it. It’s crazy. Anal, even, which explains why people recycle. It’s retentive.

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    • #
      TdeF

      Aluminium is the key (spelled Aluminum in the US). It is 90% energy, so totally recyclable. The % would be higher is you started with alumina, not bauxite.

      If you calculate the cost of aluminium per kilo ($2.20) and the energy of combustion (50% of oil per kilo) , it gives oil a run and where you can only burn oil once, you can recylcle Al2O6 endlessly.

      A car run on aluminium would have no exhaust! The engineering problem is that it would have to be a steam engine as there is the same energy release but not as a gas explosion but a vacuum.

      Incidentally, aluminium is explosively reactive like Sodium or Magnesium but forms an instant layer of Aluminium oxide. However mix it as aluminium filings with a source of oxygen such as Potassium Permanganate (KMnO4) and you have a touch bomb. Aluminium is used in hand grenades and and the giant bombs for rapid oxidation. People think metal should only be used for only construction, but it is a renewable recyclable resource for storage and not at all dangerous.

      So instead of 80kg of petrol in your car, you would have 160kg of solid aluminium bar for the same trip. The price would come down rapidly to be better than oil and never run out.

      Aluminium has the same core advantages as oil, portability and storage. The key to renewable energy is long term storage, even for fixed power plants. That is why they all generate alumnium at night from waste energy.

      Aluminium is the future and it is very usable for other things. My cars have been all aluminium for the last fifteen years. The story of aluminium has just begun. Keep the oil for plastics and jet fuel. Of course that is pure science and about doing something, not just stopping everything like the PAE (People Against Everything).

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      • #
        TdeF

        To compare Aluminium as a fuel against say Diesel fuel (Petrol is 10% less in energy content)

        Aluminium 31 Mj/kg $1.20 a kg
        Diesel 45 mj/kg $0.84c a litre

        However the density of Aluminium is 2.2 so a kg of aluminium occupies only 0.5 litres, so the
        space taken by aluminium in a modern car would be around the same as diesel for around 75% of the total energy.

        Consider that both these prices are for quite different purposes and have quite different inputs.
        Most of the diesel/petrol is taxation. In Australia, up to 90% tax. The cost of aluminium
        is also determined by volume. For petrol size volumes, perhaps it would be like scrap, 25c a kg.

        One of my submissions to the review was to ask whether carbon based fuels should be our only source of heat energy. At $1Bn a day for windmills, a little spent on real alternatives would be more productive than trying to just stop everything. Unfortunately all the Greens understand is wind, fire, water,trees. True primitive Shaman acolytes. Western society is being being assailed by druids, in turn led by power hungry communists.

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      • #

        Tdef
        I really enjoyed reading all that about aluminium but am a bit lost as how you would make a vacuum from it.
        It seem easier to create hydrogen from it by adding caustic soda. I did this once to creat a slow trickle of hydrogen for a few hours(for another experiment). Old antennas pile up around here so I broke off a few elements and dropped them into a milk bottle with a few spoons of caustic soda and filled it up with water. It kept on going for a week! Am very interested in ways to use the aluminium as the scrap metal places don’t seem to give much for it.

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        • #
          TdeF

          I was thinking pure oxygen. As Oxygen is only 22% of air, you would get heat in burning aluminium but only reduce the air pressure by 22% and produce lots of hot N2. Not much of a vacuum really. The heat however would be comparable to petrol per litre, so it is about capturing the heat. The reaction is simple enough 2Al +3O2 -> Al2O6.. My only solution is a steam engine, a well known technology used by power stations, except they are huge steam turbines. Downtown could get a little foggy.

          30

      • #
        Richard111

        Link please. Exactly how do you use aluminium to run a car?

        50

        • #
          TdeF

          No links. Just my idea. All metals burn to oxides. Iron ignites, catches fire at around 800C, which is why steel structures have to be protected, as in the World Trade Centre. Steel is usually coated. Carbon burns too. Diamond burns. Burning produces lots of heat and so you could run a steam engine, for example and the expansion of the gas provides the necessary conversion to mechanical force to drive a piston. You could burn anything. If you mill aluminium to powder, it burns dramatically, especially coupled with a fresh blast of oxygen. So you get fireworks, literally. There are other ways to convert heat to mechanical force, but it would be better occupation than reinventing 16th century windmills.

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          • #
            Yonniestone

            Tdef I know that Magnesium alloy car/motorbike wheels can catch fire if you apply enough heat while attempting to unfreeze a bolt, don’t ask. :(

            However pure magnesium will ignite at ~500c and climb to ~3,100c but if water is added it’ll produce hydrogen and puts on quite a show of violent energy, this led to the idea of the magnesium injection cycle engine (Magic) from Mitsubishi, as you said all metals burn and could provide avery real alternative energy source.

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        • #

          Richard111
          “Link please. Exactly how do you use aluminium to run a car?”
          As per above just wait for some big green anti global warming rally event and pick up all the aluminium caffiene hit cans they toss about in the Gore effect snow. Then add a bit of Caustic soda and water to run the hydrogen in this.
          http://automobiles.honda.com/fcx-clarity/

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      • #
        TdeF

        Burned oil is gone forever, back into two of the most fundamental, natural and pervasive chemicals in life on earth, CO2 and H2O. Few reactions are more natural and fundamental to life than carbon combustion, oxidation. However once gone, we are out.

        That is why we need to use recyclable aluminium to store, transport and generate heat and thus recover energy. Aluminium was the most precious wonder material of the 19th centuries. Napoleon III had a baby rattle made from aluminum. It was amazingly indulgent. There is a single 2.85kg pyramidal block of aluminum placed on the top of the 1884 Washington memorial obelisk, put there out of reach. It cost something like $1Million at the time. With electrolysis, it is now worth about $1. No one has stolen it.
        The synergy between electricy and aluminium is amazing. We should exploit it.

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        • #

          Burned oil is gone forever

          When the Earth stops making it quickly enough, we can make it using established processes (similar to Fischer-Tropsch) from the raw material left behind by the combustion of oil.

          40

          • #
            TdeF

            What raw material? There is nothing left. Only CO2 and H2O from an exhaust.

            Converting coal to oil was important during the war. Also each year we consume 1 million years of stored fossil plant fuel, so it will end. Put another way, solar is nowhere good enough, as people have slowly worked out. Biofuel is just another inefficient and solar power source, even if we burnt all our food.

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            • #

              It will end. That’s what has been said for 100 years and yet we don’t seem to be running out, but rather finding more and more. I don’t know if it will run out someday, due to us burning it faster than it is created, but right now the statement “It will run out” is more of a turn off to people. Will trillions of barrels of oil out there, people just don’t see this as a reason to cut back.

              20

              • #

                Sheri
                “due to us burning it faster than it is created,”
                What happens if we do not burn it fast enough to match the rate at which it is created? Does the precautionary principle demand we increase the population to prevent an abiotic dissaster?

                30

              • #
            • #

              “What raw material? There is nothing left. Only CO2 and H2O from an exhaust.”
              More than enough. Toss away the Os and reassemble whats left. If you don’t do it plants will. Such is life.

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              • #
                TdeF

                Oh, you mean photosynthesis? Carbon dioxide capture. Not up to us, I’m afraid. Animals only turned up when free oxygen turned up, thanks to the plants who grew up on CO2 and sunlight. The problem is the wait. Grasses are far better as they grow a lot faster and do not lock up all the CO2 in timber. We need more CO2! Or at least our green friends do.

                50

            • #

              We have 300+ years of known coal reserves for Australia at the present rate of consumption. Oil and gas reserves in Australia go largely untapped. Easy oil and gas may have decades; unconventional oil and gas by fraccing typically gives very much more.

              Coal will give way to nuclear power for stationary energy requirements; if permitted. That takes the pressure off coal as a fuel for stationary power generation. China will be getting more than half of its electricity from nuclear power by 2030 (IIRC) if they build out their nuclear plants according to current plans.

              Recovery of atmospheric CO2 isn’t easy; it’s energy-intense. Sea water is richer. And we are not going to stop assifying sea water. ;-)

              Mobility fuels represent about 15% of modern energy needs. The amount is likely to increase, but its proportion may not as billions more people employ energy-on-tap to do the hard work for them and to make their lives more pleasant.

              Densely-populated regions may use stationary energy sources to run trains, etc; but electric vehicles with electrolytic storage are maxed out and impractical for all but niche applications.

              Oil and gas don’t appear to be fossil fuels. Rather, compound produced by thermo-geological processes, generating gas and oil from mineral carbon and water, deep in the bowels. Oil and gas recovery goes (last i checked) up to some 14 km below the surface; well below plausible fossilization.

              We really don’t need to worry about how people will be filling their energy needs in a century. We have no idea of the technologies that will be available. Only (oppressive) governments can prevent civilizations embracing new technologies as quickly as they become affordable.

              Look back 50 years and try to tell me with a straight face that what we have today in the energy “market” was predictable 50 years ago. The vestiges of big power generation are dragged like anchors into the new energy landscapes.

              Architects and builders of the 1970′s looked at you as if you were insane if you wanted more than one power outlet in a bedroom.

              My crystal ball tells me that within 20 years, people will be making a big fuss about heavy metals leaching from their rooftop PV panels into the rainwater that they’ve been collecting and, somewhat foolishly; drinking for decades.

              20

      • #
        Rereke Whakaaro

        Thanks TdeF,

        That is why I come here. As “a man who thinks he knows everything’, I still delight in learning new “stuff”.

        30

      • #
        Uncle Gus

        You mustn’t say things like that! Don’t you know that THE PLANET IS RUNNING OUT OF RESOURCES!

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        • #
          Andrew McRae

          The irony is strong there. The only resources “the planet” is not running out of are the ones that get recycled. Carbon cycle, water cycle, tectonic cycle, etc.

          Human civilisation, on the other hand, can certainly run out of resources even if “the planet” has not.

          Human civilisation will eventually run out of resources if it does not either recycle or become interstellar. As interstellar travel will always be impossible, it is inevitable that recycling becomes normalised. As Penn and Teller correctly point out, whether recycling is worth doing is a function of economic particulars. The switch to closed material flows will occur for different resources at different times as the rarity and extraction cost of raw materials increases beyond market-based thresholds. It already happened for aluminium. Scrap steel is also sold profitably. Helium should be in this category but as new separation plants have begun in Qatar and Colorado there is enough primary production to cover short term needs.
          Oil is another obvious resource where depletion is inevitable but there is insufficient knowledge of the distribution of the total resource base, making “Peak Oil” date predictions impossible, and thus Fischer-Tropsch production (i.e. artificial carbon recycling) is not yet the normal source for hydrocarbon fuel.

          A more accurate title for this post might be “Recycling is very slowly becoming less of a religion and more of a necessity”.

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          • #
            Brute

            I just wanted to say that I’ve enjoyed this new improved version of trolling very much, all the way from aluminum to interstellar. Thank you.

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    • #
      me@home

      Jorge, in the video linked to above there was precious little separation of trash happening.

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  • #
    PeterS

    How many actually go to the trouble of sorting recyclable plastic from non-recycle plastic before throwing it in the recycle bin? Not many I bet. That alone proves the recycling business is s scam. As far a running out of landfill is concerned that’s a laugh. This planet is large enough to support waste from thousands of earth-like planets. At 28:25 in the video he hits the nail on the head – it’s an issue about control – control of our lives by power hungry lunatics.

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    • #
      Gee Aye

      ??? This planet is large enough to support waste from thousands of earth-like planets..???

      Anyway… You sound like someone with a sorting problem. It is not a struggle and you don’t need to root around in rubbish to achieve it. Let me give you a good system to recycle plastics.

      1. Learn to differentiate the recyclable ones (I can attest that 5 year olds are capable).

      2. When you are about to toss a plastic away, put the non recyclable in the general waste bin and non recyclable ones into the recycling bin!!!

      Even if you think it is stupid, for whatever reason, to reuse captured carbon by now dead organisms from millions of years ago, it is not difficult.

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      • #

        The question isn’t one of “can”. Given enough time and money, one can do almost anything.

        The question is one of “should”.

        For Australia, which has scant capabilities of recycling plastics, and will have even less when reliable energy supply falls to the carbophobes, recycling means bundling it up, putting it on a truck to travel long distances before loading it onto a ship to be burnt in an uncontrolled manner in places like India or China. Only a small percentage is recycled.

        The scam is huge in Europe. A PET bottle now has a refund “value” of about 50 cents! Absolutely ludicrous when its intrinsic value is less than one cent.

        High-temperature incineration is one way of extracting some of the remaining value from plastics and most other waste. Ash, depending on the feedstock, is a substitute for cement. Other ash can be processed to e.g. pyrolytic carbon; the basis of printers’ ink and laser printer toner.

        Aversion to high-quality (density) energy use in developed nations is contributing to the waste disposal problem; along with the emotional, irrational blindness of local, State and Federal governments to the fact that there is no shortage of landfill sites.

        BTW: The costs of “disposing” of hazardous household waste in Western Australia is of the order of $3/kg. Much of what is classed as hazardous becomes environmentally innocuous when exposed to sunlight, air and ubiquitous microbes for a few years; but it’s stockpiled in cool, dark places. Other stuff which could be useful feedstock to the chemical industry, is likewise, locked away.

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    • #
      tom0mason

      It is NOT waste!
      It is currently just materials in the wrong place!
      These materials are a resource are being safely stored away (in what we call dumps) for the following generations to mine when price shall dictate that it is economic to do so.

      :)

      Remember folks, most resources we do not consume (eat or burn) are NOT used up. They are just inconveniently in a form that we can not easily reuse now, and waste is only a resource in the wrong place.

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      • #
        Andrew McRae

        ^yep. tom0mason gets it.

        In the future the term “post-consumer waste” will have no practical meaning.

        20

  • #
    Aaron M

    In the NT, we have adopted the 10c container deposit, and what an absolute shemozzle.

    YOU need to rinse out the empty milk cartons and containers
    YOU need to sort the BRANDS out
    YOU need to cart them to all the way to the tip and most of all
    YOU CANNOT crush any of the containers. Therefore, you need to make 10x as many trips in the ute as normal.

    Not only that, the 10c refund? YOU and I paid for that when the price rose a few years ago to cover it. At the same time, the recycling truck still comes along fortnightly to pick up your empty bottles anyway.

    The scouts up here are still smart. They collect cans only, crush them, and take them to the scrap yard for decent money.

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  • #
    Andrew RIchards

    Good post Jo. I think your idea is excellent. Hopefully, even the cultists at the centre of dangerous AGW scam can eventually be helped in this way too. Once they have reimbursed the tax payers using their ill-gotten gains, of course.

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  • #

    First impression.

    Naah! Tony, no need to watch this.

    So, I, umm, watched it all the way through.

    What the!

    Don’t tell me we’ve been had all these years.

    Great watching, all of it.

    Oh, except for where it was discredited (well, for me anyway) when he said to make the pile twice as big and chuck in all the Eagles records.

    How could anyone not like The Last Resort

    Tony.

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    • #
      Safetyguy66

      Last Resort is musical genius. One of the most moving non classical pieces of music I can think of.

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    • #
      Andrew McRae

      I was also squirming a bit as I watched it, as my school curriculum-based indoctrination into recycling preceded by several years my school curriculum-based indoctrination into global warming alarmism. Since those days of mandatorily-misspent youth I have obviously kicked the global warming alarmism, but the attraction to recycling is still strong.

      P&T never mentioned sustainability, which I guess is okay because they aren’t arguing that recycling as a general concept is flawed, they’re only arguing current day municipal recycling programmes are a scam.

      The only part of that argument I could quibble with was Penn’s rhetorical question at 19:19 where he asks what could be done with ink extracted from waste paper. That’s not particular to recycled paper. He hasn’t specifically stated that the waste chemicals are the product of a reaction between the ink and an extraction agent or is a mixture of ink and solvent. He didn’t give enough information to decide whether it is or isn’t more environmentally disruptive to separate the ink than to dump it in landfills. I would think that’s rather important to the paper recycling idea, because I’ve never been much of a fan of recycling paper due to trees being the most eminently renewable resource we have. It’s only the ink on the paper that is problematic.
      But hey, it’s a 27 minute show and they can’t give details on everything.

      All in all it’s rather bleak picture of wasteful uneconomic activity ostensibly done to economically reduce waste.

      ___

      As for the The Last Resort… I don’t think I’ve heard anything by the Eagles before. The last resort doesn’t enitirely quite grab me with the melody alone, it’s the meaning in the lyrics that delivers the main sucker punch. I find it an odd sort of song, both cynical and beautiful at the same time. I guess the word is bittersweet. Is the message there “All attempts to achieve perfection are disastrous for someone else”?

      20

  • #
    Tel

    Those guys are hilarious I started laughing too much, had to stop watching for a while and recover.

    Wish they would say “fuck” a little less often, full marks for dumping a load of trash in front of that guy’s house and telling him to pick it all up, incredibly sad but I guess future generations can benefit from this documentation.

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  • #
    Turtle

    Good one Jo.

    I would like to see a version of this for kids.

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  • #
    Gary in Erko

    Watch the Penn & Teller take on the dangers of dihydrogen monoxide
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yi3erdgVVTw

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  • #
    The Engineer

    Unfortunately most of the “bullsh*t” in this particular episode comes from Penn and Teller, for while there are problems with parts of the recycling ethos, the basic economies still hold true.

    It is cheaper to recycle tin cans and glas and more enviromentally friendly (less digging up of the earth).
    Plastic is made from oil, and is not easily biodegradable – Better to reuse it where possible or at least dispose of it in a better way.
    At the very least your helping the garbage man sort out the trash.

    I concede though that governments often bullshit their citizens over “how much good” recycling is doing.

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    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Did you actually watch the Youtube item? Did you actually comprehend it?

      They made the point that aluminium cans are cost effective to recycle.

      They didn’t specifically mention glass, but from my experience, the value of recycled glass is considerably less than the energy costs incurred in grinding it and then remelting it, especially so when you have additives in the source material to increase its strength and give it colour – think high-tensile power insulators.

      Also, not all plastic is made from oil, and again, the costs of handling, sorting and processing, for the different types of plastic, far exceed the costs of the original.

      And you don’t need to help the garbage man sort out the trash, when it is just buried, and allowed to rot down and produce methane that can be used for power generation.
      The basic economies still hold true …

      Penn and Teller had quotations from people who have a different view on that. Do you have some comparitive figures you could share with us?

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      • #
        The Engineer

        A study by Morris found that it takes 10.4 million Btu to manufacture products from a ton of recyclables, compared to 23.3 million Btu for virgin materials. In contrast, the total energy for collecting, hauling and processing a ton of recyclables adds up to just 0.9 million Btu. The bottom line: We don’t need to worry that recycling trucks are doing more harm than good.

        http://www.popularmechanics.com/science/environment/a3736/4290631/

        And no I flicked through the video to see P&T laughing at [snip] throughout the entire half-an-hour. Making fun of [snip] does not prove that recycling doesn’t work.

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        • #

          What’s a “Btu”?

          Seriously; did you actually look up Jeffrey Morris (an “environmental consultant”) study and identify what they were recycling and from where?

          If you had, you’d have found Morris’ selection of materials for comparison to be … selective. Further, e.g. Carrol County, Maryland (proximate to that bastion of efficiency; Washington, DC) is far removed from Australian conditions where there is e.g. little plastics manufacturing and close to negligible recycling capacity. See my other comment upthread why there’s unlikely to be in the foreseeable future. Morris didn’t detail the mix of content in their curbside, recyclable collection. But he is very adept at recycling his own materials from previous papers; going back more than a decade. Morris is much like that guy in the EPA.

          Recycling of metals is somewhat sensible. Recycling of glass is marginal; determined largely on the volume of waste stock and the potential market. Glass can be crushed and sorted mechanically; with some of it being used for e.g. road surfaces.

          IIRC, we stopped making glass (bottles) in Western Australia in the 1980′s.

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          • #
            kneel

            Glass containers (bottles,jars) can be RE-USED by the simple expedient of washing them.
            In the bad old days, the milkman would deliver milk in glass bottles every day and collect the empties for reuse.
            As an added advantage, sterilising milk bottles and milk processing equipment by rinsing with iodine leaves trace amounts of this valuable nutrient in the milk. Since we moved to chlorine based sterilisation, the number of people who are iodine deficient has increased markedly.

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          • #
            Rereke Whakaaro

            BTU – British Thermal Unit

            The amount of heat energy required to raise the temperature of one pound of water (one pint) by one degree Fahrenheit, at mean sea level.

            Back in the real world, it is approximately 1055 joules, give or take a ferret.

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            • #
              Rereke Whakaaro

              Correction: It is not just any old one degree Fahrenheit. Oh no! It is defined as raising a pound of water from 60 deg F to 61 deg F.

              I am glad we got that all sorted out.

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              I was asking about “Btu”. :-)

              People who throw abbreviations around with reckless abandon are likely to be as sloppy in their dealings with the numbers.

              I would expect a technical expert to get the abbreviation for a unit of measure right. If they don’t, they may not understand what the unit means; the nature of the beast that it represents.

              The “Engineer” quoted text above; repeating the error that appears consistently in Morris’ publications and republications. That could mean that nobody who’s reading the stuff understands it anyway.

              As you’ve explained Rereke, a BTU is very little energy indeed. Barely more than a kilojoule. Not enough to make a thimble-full of tea.

              And energy can be cheap. Very cheap. It only becomes expensive if you try to concentrate it to useful density from unpredictable, diffuse sources.

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          Greg Cavanagh

          And no I flicked through the video…

          Just watch the show all the way through. It’s not that hard, even if you have strong opinions on a given aspect. Then you can tell us where they’re wrong and why.

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      Rod Stuart

      About 20 years ago I worked in a steel plant. At first I was impressed that one of the vessels in the steel plant melted down old car bodies. (each crushed and bundled about the size of a hay bale). Then I became aware of the drawbacks. These things are melted in a vessel with two huge carbon electrodes which consume 30 MW. The resulting liquid has so many impurities that it produces tonnes of slag. In order to produce high quality steel, it requires much less energy, and effort, to produce iron in the iron plant from iron sand using coal as the energy source. I suppose the only benefit is that it isn’t necessary to dump wrecked autos then in landfills. Of course the operation attracted a government subsidy. That must have made people feel really special.

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    Many thanks, Jo … this provided a perfect update to a post I had written almost two years ago: Wastelandia: Andrew Weaver et al‘s big green choru$ and $ymphony … in the key of Gore.

    Mind you, I suppose it could just be a case of confirmation bias, on my part ;-)

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    Scott

    They did do one on global warming

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    Keith L

    Great video.
    I have given up trying to reason with my flatmate and decided that it is just a religious need for her.
    If we are to do anything proactive with garbage we should separate it into flammable and non-flammable and then burn one lot for energy (the flammable probably!) and bury the rest.
    It always amuses me that people are outraged at the idea of burning waste paper but love the idea of burning “bio-fuel” ie murdered trees.

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    pat

    great fun. enjoyed watching it with friends.

    ***however, is it funnier than this Fairfax headline, which in fact boils down to Doherty saying “That’s a statement that’s been made to me by a couple of people – so that’s obviously a kind of buzz that’s going around the climate change community.” LOL.

    25 April: SMH: Dan Harrison: Australia ***seen as “public enemy number one” on climate, Peter Doherty says
    Nobel Laureate Peter Doherty says Australia is being seen internationally as “public enemy number one” on climate change and risks being isolated as China seeks to reduce its reliance on coal…
    “Australia is being regarded as public enemy number one,” said Professor Doherty, who won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1996.
    “That’s a statement that’s been made to me by a couple of people – so that’s obviously a kind of buzz that’s going around the climate change community.”…
    He said he was concerned Australia could be isolated internationally as China reduced its reliance on coal and made greater use of solar, wind and nuclear power…
    Professor Doherty attacked the government for its decision to allocate $4 million to establish a think tank headed by “sceptical environmentalist” Bjorn Lomborg…
    “The next revolution is to make the industrial society work in a way that’s sustainable within the boundaries of our planetary resources,” he said.
    “It can be done, but you have to have the will, and you have to engage with it, you don’t turn your back on it and say this is nasty for us, it has to go away.”
    “There’s this perception that we can just hold on to the world as it was, and I don’t think the world is ever like that.”
    “You can’t hold on to the world as it was, it’s gone”
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/australia-seen-as-public-enemy-number-one-on-climate-peter-doherty-says-20150425-1mt5fe.html

    or ABC’s Jessica Kidd, whose “political storm” boils down to Senator Kim Carr, Labor’s spokesman for higher education, research and innovation, who i won’t even bother to excerpt, while Jessica’s “academics across Australia” is in fact a single academic, Marine ecologist Dr Luke Hedge from the University of New South Wales?

    24 April: ABC The World Today: Bjorn Lomborg centre: Political storm grows over multimillion dollar grant for ‘sceptical environmentalist’
    JESSICA KIDD, ABC: But academics across Australia are critical of the
    Government’s position.
    Marine ecologist Dr Luke Hedge from the University of New South Wales says
    it appears Dr Lomborg has been given the money without having to go through
    the usual grants process…
    So its alarming to us that Dr Lomborg is getting somewhat of a free ride
    here without the normal checks and balances.
    http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2015/s4222956.htm

    CAGW in the MSM – always good for a belly laugh.

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      TdeF

      The Prime Ministers of Canada and Australia are the enemies! There is no shortage of billions riding on a Paris accord. As Lord Monckton wrote, the carbon cartel and UN will do everything they can to get rid of these politicians before Paris, as they could stop the handover of sovereign rights to unelected communist UN bureaucrats. Such organizations, once created, have a momentum of their own and their primary task is their own survival, which means money.

      So we have Global Warming despite the place not warming and the rage has to be maintained until Paris. Then it doesn’t matter. The UN then has control of world economies, all to stop a non existent problem. Sweet for some. Carbon Tax Helen Clarke is #3 and hoping for the top spot soon. Carbon tax supporters Julia Gillard and now Kevin Rudd are all in the picture for payback, looking for that fabulous job, doing nothing but on the world stage for a bucket load of cash and influence and fame and a great life in New York and a place in the history books. Global Warming? A means to an end.

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    Jo, this post is a terrible idea. It’ll attract every recycling nutter from around, buzzing like flies over a landfill site and anxious to set the record straight (even the Eagle’s ones).

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0HYiaYyfp8Q

    Pointman

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    Mike W

    Never mind the “crass words”, a lot of their videos have gratuitous full-frontal male/female nudity…but I just watch them for the social commentary.

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    Mike W

    North America’s infatuation with landfills and curbside separation is a classic example of regulation caused mal-investment. (The case for those recycling jobs is also classic “dig holes, fill holes” economics.) You can make the case for homeowners separating out compostables from their garbage (thanks to cat litter we put over 25 kg per week into our green bin) and maybe a monthly cardboard only run. However it is much more cost effective to use automation (magnets, water flumes, air guns, etc.) to pick the valuable ferrous and non-ferrous metals out of the bulk garbage and then shred/burn the rest in a high temperature, clean burning, incinerator. But our environmentalists cannot stand the thought of an incinerator even though “green” Europe uses them almost exclusively.

    My father helped build and run one of these state-of-the-art incinerators in Ontario Canada 40 years ago — it is still cleanly processing the garbage for 250,000 people today. Thanks to the “politics” of incineration, I think it may still be the only one in the province. And since the greens also hate landfills, Ontario pays billions of dollars per year to ship garbage to Michigan and Ohio landfills. But we have “world class” recycling which basically just removes the stuff China will buy before it goes into the landfill. Since it is effectively free to ship scrap to China (those containers and ships have to go back to pick up the next load of iPhones anyway) there is a lot of money to be made buying up the useful scrap from recycling centers (at a loss to the center of course).

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      UzUrBrain

      I visited one of these units years ago. The metal was rejected after shredding everything that came in the pit and before burning and then any that got burnt trickled out to be collected as a scrap “waste” metal. Seems to me that with all of the throwaway electronics there should be some gold/silver in that glob of junk.

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      • #
        TdeF

        And lithium.

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      • #
        Mike W

        Yes the trick is to break the trash up in to small enough pieces that can then be separated by their physical properties (magnetism or relative mass). Some of the newer plants use computer vision to spot specific items like plastic bottles and then blow them off the conveyor belt into a collection bin. Burning the shredded materials (hit it with a 2000 degree plasma and anything burns or melts) turns them into carbon which can be added to thing like asphalt.

        An interesting story is that of car recycling. In the early days labor was cheap and the materials worth enough to pay people to break down the used cars (e.g. remove all the copper wire). After WW2 this became non-profitable so millions of used cars were just dumped in farmers fields and scrapyards. But then (in the late 50′s) someone invented a machine for literally breaking an entire car into small pieces and thus separating the component materials. Recyclers then had the financial incentive to harvest the “crop” of previously dumped cars.

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    Roy Hogue

    So much to say — so little space in which to say it.

    Let’s begin here. I’m no prude and without a doubt I’ve said all those obscenities myself. But they simply don’t help Penn and Teller make their point. So perhaps the first thing is to recycle this episode of [snip (by me)] into something you would show to your children. The older I get the more convinced I become that the standards of decency we have tossed in the trashcan were right and our current standards are not serving us well in any sense except to up the titillation attraction continuously. Who needs that? Let’s start by recycling some very good standards that served western civilization pretty well for a long time. I really wonder how many parents curse that way in front of their children. Perhaps more than I imagine. But it’s a really bad example.

    Next, when you live in an area that is wall to wall city for 75 or 80 miles from sea to mountains west to east and probably more than 100 miles from north to south you begin to realize, at least if you’re thoughtful, that waste disposal is a big problem. Is recycling part of the solution. I don’t know. But see my next paragraph…

    For the entire history of the human race one group, one city, one civilization has built it’s home on top of the trash heaps of its predecessors. This point is proved by the fact that archaeologists have to dig up the past. I expect this to continue on into the future. Witness the large number of large landfills we have, even in spite of recycling.

    I do not object to recycling per se. What I object to is being charged to haul away recyclable items which are then sold off as raw material to someone who makes a profit, a profit that I underwrite every month when I pay the trash bill. If recycling was really viable economically they should pay me for that raw material. Doesn’t this tend to prove Penn and Teller’s point?

    And there is the real point about recycling. It should be economically viable without forcing me to participate by threat of sanctions. Everyone would participate willingly instead of from fear of sanction if the wrong thing shows up in the wrong bin on collection day or because of guilt. And I hope everyone noticed the guilt trip — same thing going on with global warming and social justice, ad nauseam.

    I expect this debate to go on, probably forever.

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      San Francisco adopted Zero Waste as a policy. Sounds very green, doesn’t it?

      In practice it means Zero Waste to land-fill … within city limits. Telltale is the contract that they have for landfill disposal outside of the city, extends well past the date by which plan to achieve “Zero Waste”.

      Neither of the faces of duplicity is very pretty.

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        Roy Hogue

        San Francisco is only interested in political correctness. Never look to them for honest efforts to fix real problems.

        Those two faces of duplicity are downright ugly.

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          UzUrBrain

          Check out the recent article on Drudge about the HVAC units in San Francisco literally running the public water system as a once through heat source/sink for the system and the water is dumped to the sewer after used! 1/2 a million gallons a day in the middle of “the worst drought ever.”

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      Roy Hogue

      This is maybe slightly off topic but modern technological civilization does have one disposal problem that we really should take seriously. We use all sorts of things from industrial solvents, cleaners, poisons and other things that we really should avoid letting get into the groundwater, our stream, rivers and lakes.

      The day when I ignorantly cleaned up from using petroleum based paints and let the paint thinner all run down the gutter should never have happened. But at least we can learn from hindsight and we should.

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        Ava Plaint

        It’s the day I kept a thinners soaked rag handy in my pocket for wiping up spills while painting that brought home how irritating that stuff can be.

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        Greg Cavanagh

        The thinner you put down the gutter probably evaporated within half an hour. So unless it was raining while you did it, no actual harm done.

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          tom0mason

          Greg Cavanagh

          Is thinners vapor yet another GHG?
          You should feel guilty, very guilty as Gaia will not know how to deal with it.

          /sarc_off

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      UzUrBrain

      In the early 90′s our city “sold” us on “recycling” with articles in the newspaper and on TV explaining how it would help the environment, not cost us anything as they had contracts that would actually make it profitable for the city, and all of the other warm and fuzzy stuff. Within 5 years they had to double the waste pickup rate because “the price of paper for recycle is now only 1/10 what it was because of the glut of recycled paper. Worse yet, we have to cut any cardboard into 2×2 (or less) squares, they will only take 3 of the numbered recyclable plastics, Aluminum, tin cans and NO glass. All must be rinsed. If they see anything in the bin they do not accept, they leave the bin for you to sort out the forbidden items before they will pick it up, Same if you do not rinse off/out any item. How much water and gas for hot water do I waste washing all of the garbage before I through it in the bin? Originally, there was one truck, now there are two (trash and Recyclable) thus twice the number of municipal workers with twice the pay and twice the retirement we will have to pay. One mile away, outside city limits, the one trashcan garbage collectors charge 1/4 of what the city does, and they collect from all private homes. How is this saving anything?

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        Roy Hogue

        If they see anything in the bin they do not accept, they leave the bin for you to sort out the forbidden items before they will pick it up…

        They come through the neighborhood in a one-man truck and pick those bins up with a mechanical marvel in such a hurry it’s unlikely that anything gets looked at until long after it could be traced back to the source. The economics of doing business trumps everything these days. Now if the city is actually doing the pickup I can understand looking at it. The city has your money to use to waste time on looking it all over before putting it in the truck.

        Do I hear a hoorah for private industry? ;-)

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          tom0mason

          Roy Hogue

          For private industry — HOORAH!

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          Uzurbrain

          Nothing that modern here – They still have one man driving the truck and two riding the back and picking up the trash, Then another truck and same crew arrangement for the recyclable stuff. Then they have a third truck to collect “yard waste,” e.g., grass clippings and branches (less than 4 feet long and less than 2 inches in diameter). If they think it larger than 2 inches or longer than 4 feet, or the bundle weighs more than 40 pounds it sits there. I have learned to cut it to about 3 feet and only fill the “approved” yard waste bag half full.

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          Mike W

          My sister lives in Nashville and they use the 1 bin, 1 truck, 1 man/woman technique. As opposed to Ottawa Canada where we use the 3 bin, 3 truck, 6-8 man “green” (as in $’s) approach. I helped her clean out a house and her garbageman was kind enough to let me feed 12 large bins full of garbage into it (I filled one while he loaded one). Here they would have sent another truck and crew.

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    UzUrBrain

    This shows exactly how the Climate change SCAM was foisted on us.
    Listen to this again and think about CO2 and Energy. Same tactic. same misinformation. same lies.

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      Leigh

      But wait!
      There’s more.
      Here’s the latest addition to the scam to further entrench their control over our lives.
      Local councils are inherently socialist beasts, from those that sit on, to those that manage.
      This latest , you beut save the planet “tax” inflicted on ratepayers is happening right across the country with no consultation with ratepayers.
      Read the comments.
      l’m there.
      The “David” I’m arguing with is a councilor.
      Council has “tipped” me over the edge.
      I now only use one bin, of the three council charge me for.
      And EVERYTHING goes in that one bin!

      http://www.bordermail.com.au/story/2999614/we-have-been-duped-on-waste/

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    poitsplace

    I watched that episode long ago and marveled at how incredibly stupid someone would have to be to agree that recycling food waste is a good idea. Now our municipal garbage/recycling program has begun a food waste recycling program.

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    Steamboat Jon

    While doing a stint in Kabul, my employer had a “feel good” recycle program (for bottles/cans) that most coalition employees used. During a chat with the local Afghan employees that collected all the rubbish and recycle, they let me know that it did not matter which bin I used for the bottle/can, it was all sent to the skip/landfill. Of course, the local landfill had it’s own ad-hock recyclers working for themselves.

    One test on the true viability of any venture is the elimination of all tax subsidy.

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    Ruairi

    Society hoodwinked again,
    By a bureaucrat’s stroke of a pen,
    With more gobbledy gook,
    From the little green book,
    Now revealed by both Teller and Penn.

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    Owen Morgan

    Jo: “We could lead people through a series of questions where they agree to statements revealing they believe windtowers stop storms and solar panels hold back the tide.”

    Hove Town Hall, Sussex, had a major fire recently. The fire was blamed on the solar panels carpeting the building’s roof. Thankfully, there were no casualties, but that was only because hardly anyone was in the building at the time, which was already being refurbished.

    So: the taxpayer paid for uneconomic solar panels; the taxpayer paid for the refurbishment; insurance customers and share-holders shelled out after the fire, caused by the solar installation; the taxpayer, I expect, will pay for a new set of solar panels and the council will, no doubt, dream up a new way to refurbish the reconstructed offices, at yet more expense to the taxpayer. At the end of all this, Hove Town Hall will be back to its previous condition, as a glorified fire-lighter.

    The political party “responsible” for Hove Town Hall is the green party. In the last Parliament, Brighton could, well, boast the UK’s only green MP, but greens also controlled, for want of a better word, basic municipal operations in Brighton and Hove. One thing that notoriously fails to operate in Brighton is refuse collection. The greens can’t balance the books, empty the bins, or even prevent the council buildings from going up in flames.

    At http://ww3.brighton-hove.gov.uk/index.cfm?request=b1120082&node=1576 , there is an unintentionally amusing map of Brighton and Hove, sprinkled with watermarks of the Brighton Pavilion (it really must annoy the heck out of the local greenoids that they can’t dream up any less monarchical landmark for the area, presumably because they keep incinerating all of the others). Possibly as a kind of sop to Al Gore, the Pavilion icon appears underwater in several places.

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    pat

    read all:

    25 April: UK Telegraph: Christopher Booker: Top scientists start to examine fiddled global warming figures
    The Global Warming Policy Foundation has enlisted an international team of five distinguished scientists to carry out a full inquiry
    Their inquiry’s central aim will be to establish a comprehensive view of just how far the original data has been “adjusted” by the three main surface records: those published by the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (Giss), the US National Climate Data Center and Hadcrut, that compiled by the East Anglia Climatic Research Unit (Cru), in conjunction with the UK Met Office’s Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction. All of them are run by committed believers in man-made global warming…
    More details of the Global Warming Policy Foundation’s International Temperature Data Review Project are available on the inquiry panel’s website http://www.tempdatareview.org
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/11561629/Top-scientists-start-to-examine-fiddled-global-warming-figures.html

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    Rod Stuart

    A battle has raged in British Columbia for a quarter century.
    BC Hydro aches to build “Site C” (C for clean) on the Peace River. The mighty Peace flows at seven million cubic meters per second. It generates 3500 MW at the Bennett dam, and a further 700 MW at Peace Canyon. Site C could produce 1100 more. In the early ‘60s the Bennet dam flooded 350,000 acres to create the Williston Reservoir, 600 feet deep. The watershed is about the size of NSW and Victoria.

    The Site C dam would flood 1600 hectares of marginal farmland. Farming began here in the depression as farmers were forced from farms further South by the Dust Bowl. It is viable agriculturally due to the late twentieth century warming.

    In my opinion it is a bad economic option. Because the capital cost will approach ten billion CAD, Hydro estimate the cost of production at $100 CAD per MWH. The region literally has mountains of coal, and a coal-fired power station with USC boilers could produce at barely more than a third of that.

    However, the opposition from the Greens is always the loss of that farm land. The cost of loss production has been included in Hydro’s submission. However, in this article, the author says IF that land were in the Fraser or Okanagan valley, where apples, peaches, pears, and grapes grow, it would be much more valuable. This is the sort of woulda shoulda coulda argument the Greens always fabricate. The Greens want to build windmills instead.

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    pat

    ***Singapore’s two sovereign wealth funds…are already “high-performing and well-run”, so Jessica & Nathan want to interfere & Straits Times gives them space to say so?

    24 April: The Straits Times: Singapore can take lead as low-carbon investor
    Jessica Robinson & Nathan Fabian
    (The first writer is chief executive, Association for Sustainable and Responsible Investment in Asia (ASrIA), The second is chief executive, Investor Group on Climate Change, Australia and New Zealand.)
    Singapore has something to teach us. Environmentally, it has performed well.
    In 2011, Singapore was rated as Asia’s top-performing city in the Green City Index, created by the Economist Intelligence Unit and Siemens. This year, for the Arcadis Sustainable Cities Index, it was rated the top Asian city under the “planet” category.
    Singapore has had many successes, achieving some of the highest rates of waste collection and recycling and lowest rates of water leakages…
    Of course, Singapore can do more.
    For example, it has very low levels of renewable energy generation…
    ***Singapore’s two sovereign wealth funds, like the city-state itself, are already high-performing and well-run…
    In GIC’s case, an annualised return of 12.4 per cent has been achieved in the past five years, much higher than figures posted by many of its peers…
    First, they should become world leaders in financing infrastructure that raises the efficiency of energy and water use, to build cleaner, low-carbon cities where people need not fear to breathe.
    ***They can thus capture the incentives that governments are increasingly directing into the green economy…
    ***The world manages around US$300 trillion (S$404 trillion) worth of financial assets.
    There is great potential for funding a wholesale shift to a low-carbon and climate-resilient economy, thereby investing in the growth story of the future while generating strong returns.
    With its astonishing success and prosperity, Singapore can and must take the lead…
    http://www.straitstimes.com/news/opinion/more-opinion-stories/story/singapore-can-take-lead-low-carbon-investor-20150424

    Jessica (LinkedIn) previously worked as a researcher in UK House of Commons; for Ernst & Young 2000-2004; Hill & Knowlton 1999-2000; done Independent Coursework – Financial Times Non-Executive Director Diploma & World Bank – Clean Development Mechanisms. here she is with “trillions” dripping from her pen throughout:

    pdf. 34 pages: 2014: International Institute for Sustainable Development: Using Innovative Policy and Regulatory Approaches to
    Incentivize the Alignment of Investment Strategies with Sustainability Considerations
    by Jessica Robinson
    Chief Executive Officer
    Association for Sustainable & Responsible Investment in Asia
    IISD’s vision is better living for all—sustainably; its mission is to champion innovation, enabling societies to live sustainably. IISD is registered as a charitable organization in Canada and has 501(c)(3) status in the United States. IISD receives core operating support from the Government of Canada, provided through the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), from the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and from the Province of Manitoba. The Institute receives project funding from numerous governments inside and outside Canada, United Nations agencies,
    foundations and the private sector…
    As CEO, Jessica is responsible for overseeing, directing and implementing the strategic plan and activities of the organization. ASrIA is a not-for-profit membership association dedicated to promoting sustainable finance and responsible investment across the Asia Pacific, through building market capacity, providing advocacy for the financial industry and undertaking research projects and authoring publications. In addition to managing operations, resources and finances, Jessica is responsible for directing all project and research initiatives, overseeing ASrIA’s advocacy and
    engagement activities, and managing relationships with members, sponsors, the industry and other stakeholders.
    Her role also involves providing thought leadership on industry issues, with regular contributions to the media and speaking engagements…
    2.0 Defining the Problem: Incentivizing Change in the Investment Industry
    The investment industry is highly heterogeneous. As a collective, such investors hold a massive proportion of global assets—in 2011, it was estimated that this stood at well over US$85 trillion (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development [OECD], 2013)…
    Given the size of assets under management, the behaviour of the investment industry is critical to global capital allocation and the direction of economic development and growth. Its role in bringing transformational change to the financial ecosystem is obvious, and yet it remains out of step with the urgent need to build sustainable, low-carbon green economies. The challenge is how to incentivize the investment industry so that it is no longer out of step with global needs…
    For example, a study of some of the world’s largest pension funds, with a total of US$2 trillion in assets under management, concluded that climate change could contribute as much as 10 per cent to portfolio risk over the next 20 years (Mercer Consulting, 2011)…
    http://www.iisd.org/pdf/2014/innovative_policy_reg_approaches_en.pdf

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    pat

    the never-ending meetings leading up to Paris!

    International Investor Group on Climate Change
    Member Events
    07 May 2015, Stockholm 50 Shades of Green carbon foot print workshop In partnership with SweSIF, IIGCC will hold its seminar on the various options for measuring the carbon footprint of a common global equities portfolio. This will be an opportunity to discuss experiences with investors on comparing carbon intensity against a benchmark and aggregating indicators at portfolio level.
    12 May 2015, BNP Paribas Investment Partners, 14 rue Bergere – 75009 Paris Launch of EEFIG final report on Energy Efficiency Ahead of the UN Convention on Climate Change 21st Conference of the Parties (COP21) in Paris this December, and in the context of the European Union’s discussion on the “Juncker Plan”, BNP Paribas Investment Partners is hosting the French launch of the Energy Efficiency Financial Institutions Group’s (EEFIG) final report: “Energy Efficiency – the first fuel for the EU Economy.”
    http://www.iigcc.org/

    trillions on their lips back in 2013:

    2013: ASrIA: US$20 trillion meeting – Global investors meet to discuss risks and opportunities of climate change
    Organized by the Asia Investor Group on Climate Change, with support from partners in the Global Investor Coalition on Climate Change, members of the four international climate change investor groups were brought together, representing over US$20 trillion assets under management.
    Many countries in Asia are still developing economically, and this development could spell disaster if not managed responsibly. Assaad Razzouk, CEO of Sindicatum Sustainable Resources, based in Singapore, said:
    “Asia Pacific is set to roast the world. Analysis by the World Resources Institute shows that across the region there are 925 coal-fired power stations commissioned or on the drawing board with an average 50 year coal supply contract. In one sweep, this is the formula for a 6 degree world.”…
    Video keynote speakers, Ban Ki-moon, United National Secretary General; Al Gore, previous US Vice-President; Rachel Kyte, Senior World Bank VP and Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, all stressed the essential role of the financial services industry in combating climate change…
    ttp://asria.org/us20-trillion-meeting-global-investors-meet-to-discuss-risks-and-opportunities-of-climate-change/

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    pat

    cannot find a single image of the Berlin coal levy protest on google images for past 24 hours, but can find several of a dozen anti-coal protesters linking hands near the RWE Garzweiler mine.

    Deutsche Welle has nothing; in fact, AFP & Reuters appear to be controlling the narrative, with Reuters claiming only 13,500 were at the Berlin protest.

    proof that Germans want the levy? a WWF poll with Campact (who are described online as “Campact is Germany’s largest online petition website. Campact raises awareness of a multitude of social, political and environmental issues”!):

    25 April: AFP: Rival rallies in Germany over fate of coal-fired power plants
    Some 15,000 people protested in front of the Chancellery in Berlin against government plans to gradually close down coal-powered plants.
    Another 6,000 people from throughout Germany and elsewhere in Europe demonstrated against the use of coal, answering the calls of environmental groups such as Greenpeace and Bund to create a 7.5-kilometre (four-mile) long human chain around the huge Garzweiler open mine in the west of the country, organisers said.
    “A large part of the population supports a gradual and socially acceptable withdrawal from coal, in order to achieve the (government) objective of reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 40 percent by 2020,” from 1990 levels, the campaign groups said.
    To reach this objective Germany’s Economy and Energy Minister Sigmar Gabriel wants to end the reliance on coal which currently generates 40 percent of the country’s electricity.
    However his plans are opposed not only by the producers and the IG BCE energy union but also by members of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s coalition government…
    Magda Stoczkiewicz, director of Friends of the Earth Europe, said in a statement that “a successful German energy transition including a phase out of coal is of great international importance. Failure would make the rest of the world wonder: Why should we even try, if the Germans can’t do it?”…
    https://au.finance.yahoo.com/news/rival-rallies-germany-over-fate-123031561.html

    25 April: Reuters: Thousands of coal workers march in Berlin in protest against climate tax
    (Reporting by Caroline Copley and Reuters TV; editing by Jane Baird)
    BERLIN – Thousands of coal miners and workers in coal-fired plants marched in Berlin on Saturday to protest a proposed levy on the oldest, most polluting power stations, saying it could lead to massive job losses and the decline of the industry in Germany…
    But opponents say the plan will damage the coal industry and could put up to 100,000 jobs at risk…
    Germany’s largest power producer, RWE, and other energy groups have said the levy would lead to the immediate closure of RWE’s lignite-fired power plants…
    Meanwhile, 6,000 environmental campaigners formed a human chain over 7 kilometers long at an open cast mine owned by RWE in Garzweiler, western Germany to protest against environmental damage caused by brown coal.
    A poll for conservation group WWF and civil movement Campact published on Saturday found that 73 percent of those surveyed were in favor of restricting production at the oldest brown coal power stations to help achieve the climate goals.
    https://ca.news.yahoo.com/thousands-coal-workers-march-berlin-protest-against-climate-164646853.html

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      I’ve got a picture of anti-coal protesters in this article. Hopelessly deluded thinking that CO2 is black and comes out of a cooling tower. (It does in some plants, but it’s not the norm.) Their human-chain stunt was outdone by the massive protests in Berlin.

      Here’s a picture of miners protesting against job losses; not showing the numbers. Here’s an article on the miners protesting in Berlin with 15,000 protestors given. Even the left-wing taz shown many unhappy miners. Too many more to mention.

      What many of the coal miners have yet to recognize is that the Federal Network Agency (BNA) responsible for a stable power supply network in Germany, has not permitted the shutdown of even the oldest, dirtiest and inefficient coal-burning plants in Germany. The BNA needs their spinning reserve to have a snowball’s chance in hell of preventing the next storm from producing Europe-wide rolling power outages.

      Coal is cheap to burn for spinning reserve; the gas-fired open-cycle plants are too expensive to keep ready, even though they are technically more able to respond to fluctuations. If the oldest coal-burners are ordered to shut down, then electricity prices in Germany will jump even higher with cost consequences for the SME manufacturing sector that is the basis for Germany’s economic strength.

      If coal goes; so do many SME manufacturers and the associated jobs. Poland and the Czech Republic are much more industry-friendly. Wages are lower but for manufacturers shifting their productive facilities; it’s just another few km by truck to their big customers.

      Ask automotive component manufacturers like Behr and Hella.

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    Richard

    I didn’t watch the video but from commentary it probably matches my own conclusions. Here in Tas all Councils collect recyclables in a separate bin. A few months ago, I visited the local recycling contractor in Hobart at their sorting centre to discuss the utility of their recycled broken glass as possible biological growth media for wastewater treatment systems (it wasn’t much use – too contaminated). In conversation, it came out that most of the glass they collect finishes up in landfill anyway as the cost of getting it to the Mainland where it’s processed exceeds the value of it as raw material once it gets there. But it’s still collected separately and sorted so not just a pointless exercise but an expensive one too.

    But hey we all fee GREEEEEAT!

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    [...] useful government publication. Recycling by Penn and Teller. Sadly longwinded for busy [...]

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    Scotth

    Hi Jo,

    Penn and Teller did actually tackle global warming (now known as climate change) in an episode of bull$shit. I would send you a link but it turns out it is now hard to find. Because why debate when you can stick your head in the sand, I guess. Anyway, it’s out there & worth seeing!

    Scott

    [A search on IMDb returns a show on "Environmental Hysteria" (dated 10/4/2003), and another show on "Being Green" (dated 24/7/2003), but nothing per se on "Clmate Change" or "Global Warming"] Fly

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    Jeef

    There was a guy, underwater guy, controlled the sea. Got killed by ten million pounds of sludge from New York and New Jersey…

    Apologies for the pixies reference but at least something good came out of the Mobro 4000 fiasco.

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