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Carbon tax and Sydney Uni economics, both slugs on the economy


Michael Harris,  Senior Fellow in the School of Economics at University of Sydney, has the impossible job of defending the monstrously ineffective carbon tax against the pointless-but-efficient “Direct Action” program. The carbon tax cost $15b, and cut emissions by 12 million tonnes. The Direct Action plan cost $660m, and is projected to save 47 million tonnes.

Having no numbers remotely on his side, Harris goes quantum semantic. Watch the leap. A tax is not a cost, only a transfer. That makes your tax bill so much easier to pay:

There is also a difference between costs to the economy, and transfers within it. The amount of revenue raised through any tax is not a cost; it is simply a transfer from one “pocket” to “another”. The money has not been destroyed, and it remains available to be spent on something.

Now it seems to me that if I buy a beer, it’s a transfer from one “pocket” to another pocket and if that money is destroyed in the process, that would be the end of the bottle shop. The world of economics rather depends on that money not being vaporised and being available for the shop owner to spend. Adam Smith and all.

But is the real problem just which pocket the money ends up in? It would seem that as long as it’s not given to the pocket that earned it, that’s OK.

It has distributional consequences, obviously, as the “pocket” where that money sits has changed, but total spending power within the economy remains undiminished. (Moreover, Australians received compensation via the tax system after the carbon tax was introduced.)

So why do we have private business at all? If the government owned the lot, nothing would cost anything. Everyone could buy everything, and be compensated for it! (All hail the USSA. Is this the best “economics” from Sydney Uni? “Experts” would be in control of everything… central planning is optimal, Comrade.)

By contrast, the cost of a tax is what the economy – not an individual person or business enterprise – has lost as a result of the existence of the tax. Lower labour supply, fewer goods and services produced – these are the things we would typically count when assessing the burden imposed on an economy from any tax instrument. Hunt hasn’t provided credible estimates of these kinds of impacts.

Do the numbers — $15 billion dollars was redirected away from where it would otherwise have gone in the free economy. Even Harris admits most businesses can’t reduce carbon emissions for less than $23/ton, so they couldn’t do anything “useful”, and most of that $15billion achieved nothing carbon-wise. It was just an extra cost. Somebody paid. Across the economy, thousands of businesses faced smaller margins or passed the costs on to consumers. Those who took smaller margins made less profit, or employed less people or invested less in upgrades. Those who passed on the costs, lost customers, lost sales to foreigners or just sold slightly less product. Either that or the customers who paid more had to make do with less  — no weekend in Noosa — and a job was destroyed somewhere else.

Have cake, eat cake, make bridge with cake

Magic pie economics:

First, ongoing revenue from the carbon tax can be used to fund, for example, public infrastructure investments, or to allow cuts to other more economically harmful taxes.

Takes a government-funded brain to come up with these arguments. More money taken from productive useful Australians is good. But if the government has to pay money to people who do things it says it wants, that’s bad…

The cost of payments under Direct Action, by contrast, have to be funded by taxes elsewhere, or borrowed funds

Progressive normal tax, “bad”; carbon tax “good”.

The cost of compensation

Pretend for a minute that somehow the government managed to “compensate” the economy — instead of doing something useful, thousands of Australians were calculating the money-go-round because all that money needed to be accounted for, redistributed, taxed and set free again. The productivity gain here is what? — That our weather was meant to get nicer, or someone in China was meant to invent a better solar panel.

The marvel is that this is Sydney Uni economics and The Conversation editors liked it.

 

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Carbon tax and Sydney Uni economics, both slugs on the economy, 9.2 out of 10 based on 98 ratings

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129 comments to Carbon tax and Sydney Uni economics, both slugs on the economy

  • #
    TdeF

    Really, this is beyond parody. Sarcasm is hardly adequate. These ridiculous economic arguments have achieved a silliness level which is beyond words. As the faux science of man made runaway CO2 driven Global Warming slowly dies, you can trust the fringe economists to try to explain why a tax on breathing is not really a tax but a chance to build more windmills and save the world.

    751

    • #
      Carbon500

      Given a human projected lifespan of three score years and ten, it should be possible to tax everyone on the amount of CO2 exhaled over a lifetime.
      Of course, administrators and accountants will be needed.
      That’ll create work, and the government (name your country of choice) can claim that they’re creating ‘green’ jobs and saving the planet.
      Why not tax us all in advance based on our projected lifetime CO2 exhalation?
      Of course, the money will be refundable if death occurs before 70 years of age. That’s only right and fair.
      Ridiculous, you say.
      No. That’s not as ridiculous as it sounds. Since the deceased won’t in fact be claiming their refunds, the government will be ‘quids in’ as we say in the UK.
      Well – it’s no sillier than any other carbon tax, is it?

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      • #
        Yonniestone

        A pro-rata breathing tax calculated by proxy……this particular parasite has legs lets run with it!

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      • #
        Colin Henderson

        Hopefully athletes, including olympians, will pay a premium for the extra CO2 (pollution) they spew into the environment during their years of training; and perhaps there will be a discount for couch potatoes.

        260

        • #
          Colin Henderson

          I would also like to see breweries and carbonated beverage companies get a tax break for their carbon sequestering efforts. There should be a beer and beverage tax for those who choose to release the sequestered CO2 ;)

          Also thinking about a tax on other greenhouse gasses escaping during digestion, burping and the other end.

          210

          • #
            tom0mason

            Maybe yeast — including bread yeast — should be a classed as a toxic pollutant and a controlled substance, with all areas decontaminated from its noxious CO2 generating abilities.

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    • #
      Graeme No.3

      The Vice-Chancellor
      Sydney University.

      Re this recent article by Michael Harris in the School of Economics. Could you explain?
      For you convenience I offer 4 answers that you can select from.

      This indicates the acceptable intellectual level in the School of Economics.
      He is trying to get onto the ABC.
      He is young and has led a very sheltered life away from reality.
      Our psychiatrist will be seeing him shortly.

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      • #
        Sceptical Sam

        You forgot one Graeme No.3

        - he is on sabbatical from the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens’ School of Post-modern Economics and Finance.

        70

    • #
      Manfred

      Really, this is beyond parody. Sarcasm is hardly adequate.

      TdeF, let’s not relinquish ‘satire’ just yet, ‘ referred to as the nipple of comedy‘?

      I smiled with irony. Sitting in a University medical school library in the South Island NZ where the ambient room temperature has been notably reduced to some industrially legislated OSH minimum, which makes it impossible to be sedentary for more than an hour or two before absolutely needing to move, simply because it’s so damned effing cold. Quite the change on previous years and not in the least bit conducive to efficient research or study. The exorbitant cost of electricity it seems has become institutionally unsustainable, so the University plaintively urges everyone to save all they can ‘for the environment’, ‘the planet’, ‘the polar bears’, even though 60% of it is generated by huge hydro-projects that were originally paid for by the NZ taxpayer in previous years.

      So, perhaps the Sydney branch of The Conversation might venture out of their AC offices to the bottom of the South Island for a few weeks, and oblige them to pay for their power consumption and additional clothing needs out of their own personal Frappé coffee funds. No fuzzy grants or slush funds permitted for such frivolity. Definitely no senior students or junior research fellows. This is a rare excursion and pleasure reserved solely for senior lecturers and above. It is a life-time chance to feel warmed by the joy of sharing and the opportunity to assist communities in their daily tasks of surviving in adversity. As a small inducement, not that it is expected that this will be needed, there is the opportunity to view a continuously looping DVD record of the latest Attenborough – Obama interview.

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      • #
        TdeF

        Nice segway. David Attenborough ducked the question about Climate Change and went onto children being fascinated with slugs.

        50

    • #
      aussieguy

      Politicised Academics…
      Politicised Science…
      Politicised Economics…
      Politicised Excuses…

      …I’m embarrassed to be a former student of University of Sydney.

      40

  • #

    Have you noticed how it’s now down to economists to solve this alleged problem with Greenhouse Gas Emissions, CO2 foremost among them.

    These Economists solutions always involve the imposition of some way to make money out of it, not to actually solve the problem, but just for the sake of the money.

    An outright tax, or the more stealthy tax, an ETS.

    The tax is just an outright money grab, while an ETS is the same, only with the added advantage of making even greater amounts with each new year.

    The model ETS is a wonder to behold. It sets the base price and certificates can be traded at the market price, as long as the emitting entity hands back certificates equal to their total emissions at the end of each recording year.

    So, when the certificates are first released, the first sale after that, then the price goes down, and the sale time when they are due to be handed back, then the price quite naturally skyrockets.

    If the entity exceeds their emissions total, then they have to purchase certificates to make up to the new total, at the most recent highest price. Then, on top of that they pay a fine equal to 1.5 to 2 times their excess, and that excess is then deducted from their target for the following year, a target which is lowered with each new year. From this, you can see how it is a pretty big money making scheme, especially when some emitters would be paying close on $500 to $600 Million each year.

    What is patently obvious is that the Renewables cannot replace those large scale CO2 emitting plants, so they will go on delivering the power that is always required of them, only now, each year, they are forced to pay more and more.

    Subtle, isn’t it.

    Don’t solve the problem, umm, like just shutting down the emissions by closing the plant. Just find ways to make enormous amounts of money from it.

    Plus the hidden costs of regulators to administer the program, regulators to rigidly check the actual amounts of emissions, broking costs, middleman costs, administration costs, and on it goes.

    Money for everybody, and not actually solving the problem.

    No wonder economists keep trying to justify the need for something like this.

    Tony.

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    • #
      Dennis

      Worse, if as Union Labor planned, as Greg Combet outlined, our carbon tax revenue was sent to the EU ETS.

      90

    • #
      Another Ian

      Tony,

      This seems a good question to me


      its usually a very good read..
      https://carboncounter.wordpress.com/2015/06/11/can-you-make-a-wind-turbine-without-fossil-fuels-2/

      Can You Make a Wind Turbine Without Fossil Fuels?
      POSTED ON JUNE 11, 2015 UPDATED ON JUNE 11, 2015

      Various scenarios have been put forward showing that 100% renewable energy is achievable. Some of them even claim that we can move completely away from fossil fuels in only couple of decades. A world entirely without fossils might be desirable, but is it achievable?

      The current feasibility of 100% renewable energy is easily tested by asking a simple question. Can you build a wind turbine without fossil fuels? If the machines that will deliver 100% renewable energy cannot be made without fossil fuels, then quite obviously we cannot get 100% renewable energy.

      Jun 29, 2015 at 8:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterBarry Woods”

      From http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2015/6/29/venting-and-venting.html#comments

      PS I also recall a mention awhile back on Red Power blog of one wind farm in Colorado getting a semi-trailer load of Mobil 1 synthetic oil (expensive) per fortnight.

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      • #

        Various scenarios have been put forward showing that 100% renewable energy is achievable.

        When Renewables can actually supply the power delivered from 22,000MW of power for 24 hours of every day, EVERY day, then, and only then will I believe.

        Until then, they are just pi$$in’ in the wind.

        Tony.

        Post Scripts

        1. Some of you may wonder why I’m now using that ABSOLUTE physical requirement of 22,000/23,000MW now, when previously I was using 18,000MW, as shown in an earlier Guest Post here at Joanne’s site (at this link). That original data was from information available at that time, and excluded WA and the NT. Now I am including both of those States. The term Base Load (2 words) applies here, but that word is now used as a put down adjective by non believers in the term, so to accentuate it, now I refer to it as the absolute physical requirement.

        2. So, again, does anyone know what happened to the new Wind Performance Site? It’s been (mysteriously) off the air for the last Month or so, during the latter part of the running of this Senate Inquiry into Wind Power. That original information was from the (now replaced) older version of the Wind Farm Performance site. Luckily I saved the old site which now acts as Andrew’s Archive. That is at this link, and this is for just one day. (in this case May 17th 2013) Scroll down to the third graph of actual demand and you’ll see that the low point at the dip between 3AM and 5AM is that figure of 18,000MW I originally used. Now, to show I’m not cherry picking, you can select any day you wish from this archive by just changing the date in the url address line there, It’s shown as Year/Month/Day. It starts at 22nd July 2009, and goes until 21st August 2014. Pick any day you like and you’ll see that low point always at 18,000MW. Christmas Day is the ONLY day (under normal operations, barring the odd flood here and there) which is ever lower than that 18,000MW.

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      • #
        Greg

        I once was told that a solar panel could never generate the equivalent energy that is required to build it.

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    • #
      janama

      I’m sorry Tony but renewables are going to power the world – I know this because THEIR-ABC told me so.

      http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/scienceshow/features/energy-futures/

      Unbelievable biased fantasy! (check out the solar one)

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    • #
      Bulldust

      Let’s talk pure econ 101 theory – which the Prof should be familiar with:

      Every tax that drives a market away from a free market equilibrium has an associated loss called the “deadweight loss”:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deadweight_loss

      The only way there would be no deadweight loss is if the demand or supply was a vertical line (i.e. totally inelastic in econspeak). This never happens, at least not in the longer run. Therefore all taxes have a deadweight loss, except in the cases of externalities.

      Now the question becomes one of the “free market equilibrium.” In theory the market should reflect all costs and benefits associated with the goods or services in question. If something is not included then the market is said to have externalities (i.e. things that impact a third party, either beneficial or harmful, that aren’t reflected in the market transaction).

      Therefore to justify a tax on “carbon” or an ETS, one has to unequivocably make the case that CO2 is a negative externality not reflected in the market between power generators and consumers (for example).

      That is teh crux of the issue. Is CO2 an externality? And even more impotantly, is it a negative externality? If you answer “No” to the first or second question then you cannot justify a carbon tax/ETS. It would be inefficient (economically) to do so.

      It is realy that simple. The difficult question is whether CO2 is a negative externality. The last couple decades suggest, not so much. Increased crop yields might even suggest it is a positive externality. I would not go so far as to say fossil fuel burners should be subsidised, but hey… this is pure theory.

      90

      • #
        Tezza

        Quite right, bulldust, and much better than economics 101!

        All Harris is trying to argue is that it is better to tax production of a ‘bad’ with allegedly significant negative externalities (and thereby reduce them) than the production or consumption of a ‘good’ (and thereby reduce them).

        As you say, the argument stands or falls on whether CO2 has significant negative externalities or not. On the evidence to date, I’d say not.

        31

    • #
      Angry

      The Global Warming SCAM was always just about the money and always will be !!

      Communism == Wealth Redistribution

      90

  • #
    Stephen Harper

    It’s not fair. Every time I try to parody space-cadet green ideology or loony-left economics in a vain effort to convince lefty friends that they have backed the wrong horse, out pops someone like Michael Harris. His type do such a magnificent job of self-parody that my feeble efforts at parody are put in the shade. It’s just not fair. Did I say that already?

    411

    • #
      Leonard Lane

      Yes Stephen, to a rational mind this is funny. But do not forget the sad bottom line. More taxes, bigger government, less freedom, poorer middle class, undue economic burdens on the poor.
      This is a deadly triangle for a democracy. Radical leftists–bigger government–less freedom for the people.
      I question whether the USA will ever recover from Obama. Transfer funds from the working people to big government salaries, crony capitalism, and greater dependency for those that cannot or will not work. These things are very hard to reverse.

      251

      • #
        Dean Bruckner

        No we will not.

        60

      • #
        OriginalSteve

        What we need is a paradigm breaker – pushing hydrogen production from on-board fuel reforming could totally upset the whole apple cart. The current paradigm is in a death spiral downward, so what we need is a major disrupter…..

        Given some of the research I’ve heard of currently floating around, it seems now very close to making a bolt out from cover into the open.

        70

    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      I am not so sure. I think he is on to something. Look at his quote:

      There is also a difference between costs to the economy, and transfers within it. The amount of revenue raised through any tax is not a cost; it is simply a transfer from one “pocket” to “another”. The money has not been destroyed, and it remains available to be spent on something.

      Now let’s change a few words:

      There is also a difference between adding new carbon to the environment, and transferring carbon within it. The amount of carbon reduced through any tax is not a benefit; it is simply a transfer from one “pocket” to “another”. The carbon has not been destroyed, and it remains present in the environment.

      It’s all semantics folks.

      80

  • #
    graphicconception

    OK, let’s go along with the idea. Taxes are just a transfer and not a cost.

    The transfer process is an overhead which should be counted as a cost.

    I vote we reduce the overhead to zero by not transferring the money. That way we save money and I get to spend mine!

    Who was it who said that a tax is when the government thinks it can spend your money better than you can yourself?

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    • #
      Graeme No. 3

      Who was it said that 50% of the money that Governments spend is wasted? To economise all you have to do is work out which 50%.

      60

  • #
    Robert O

    Reading in the Aust., the 29th., “We cannot save the earth without common ground” written by several CEO’s of the ACTU, the Business Council and others, stating the need for climate change policy to reduce carbon emissions and keep global temperatures to a 2 degree rise. Apart from the evidence that strongly suggests that temperatures have remained static for 18 years now whilst levels of CO2 have gone up to 400 ppm., hence no correlation, why would anyone want to spend heaps of money curtailing CO2 which will do nothing much, and at the same continue to export large quantities of coal for the rest of the world to burn producing more CO2? Seems to me a failure in logic somewhere, particularly with these distinguished CEO’s, but isn’t this the basis of the climate change hypothesis?

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    • #
      Carbon500

      I always mention to warmists that in the ‘pre-industrial’ age (ie pre 1750AD) CO2 is stated to have been 280ppm. It’s gone up by 43% to 400ppm.
      Despite this, we’re all still here, and why haven’t we had a global climatic disaster (pick your event of choice – runaway warming, loss of the ice caps, flooding of continents and so forth)?
      Climate change – the pseudo-science of tinkering with fractional supposed changes in temperature to generate money.

      281

      • #

        The Climate Roundtable comprising the usual taxpayer funded suspects like Councils, Institutes, Forums, the WWF and concerned industries that could be either made or ruined by Roundtable decisions, plan to reduce atmospheric CO2 to ensure the planet’s temperature increase will not exceed 2C.

        It plans to reduce that pesky CO2 and mild warming that has caused world crop production to increase by 30% and arable land by 10%, using the yet to be invented CO2 control knob.

        While the roundtable will claim to be saving us from hypothetical Thermaggedon it will more likely, if successful, ensure world famine and starvation of the masses.

        Probably makes sense to taxpayer funded Roundtable bureaucrat.

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      • #
        TdeF

        Yes and we get many 2C climate changes every single day without any particular problem. This argument of nothing actually happening is addressed by postulating a critical tipping point at which the earth explodes because it is fed up. While this convenient creation of sudden Armageddon is at odds with our every day experience, who cares?

        Just send money to the Climate Council. Sorry, transfer money, from your pocket to Tim Flannery’s pocket. With a little effort, anyone can learn advanced Green economics money speak, but it does sound very much like communism.

        140

    • #
      Robert O

      Just putting a few numbers on annual coal production around the world:

      China 3,600 million tonnes
      Aust. 430 million tonnes
      World
      Production 7,860 million tonnes

      Assuming the direct action plan is a saving of 47 million tonnes p.a. of CO2, (CO2:C is 44:12) and coal averages 80% carbon, our contribution to world CO2 is 430 x 3.7 x 80% = 1260 million tonnes p.a.
      So we are going to abate 47 million tonnes of CO2 p.a. and yet our contribution to world CO2 is 1260 million tonnes p.a., or only 3.7 %!

      Our production of coal is about 5% and China is roughly 50% of the world total.

      100

      • #
        TdeF

        China is a poor developing country using half the world’s coal and half the world’s steel. They have agreed in writing to keep building coal fired electricity until they do not need to build any more, roughly around 2030. Kerry and Obama are delighted and the Greens say China is leading the world in setting an example. That must be another planet.

        70

    • #
      Leonard Lane

      Robert. The US healthcare system suppliers (companies supplying medical equipment and medicines, healthcare software, x-ray machines, etc. etc.) are reaping enormous profits from Obamacare.
      Likewise, the big corporations such as GE, Siemens, etc. which manufacture “renewables” are making fortunes, Tech companies are cashing in on global warming are also making fortunes. Also, universities, non-profits, and hundreds of thousands of high-paid bureaucrats in EPA, the land management agencies (USFS, NPS, BLM, CofE and their state and local partners) are making hundreds of $billions of dollars in salaries and benefits. There is enormous political pressure to keep the gravy train rolling regardless of the truth or of the high degree of human suffering (1-2 billion people) in Africa and other poor areas of the world. The lust for power and money transcend all of these things. That’s why CAGW (AKA climate change, disruption, etc.) have such a powerful support base.

      90

  • #
    ScotsmaninUtah

    “Who gets the benefits from the reductions in Australian CO2 emissions”

    So Australia produces less CO2 via an aggressive move to renewables and taxation…

    NASA | A Year in the Life of Earth’s CO2

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x1SgmFa0r04

    ….
    A quick look at the NASA YouTube video on CO2 around the Globe indicates that the reduction in CO2 emissions will benefit …
    Chile, Argentina and Brazil…. and maybe few people in South Africa.

    If you find a CO2 molecule in your backyard that does not belong to you .. ?
    please return it to the country of origin … :D

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  • #
    James Bradley

    Dear Michael Harris,

    Your analysis of the specific economics of the Carbon Tax has exactly the same benefits for society and outcomes for the tax payer as when a bloke with a shotgun jumps the counter and takes it from us.

    Sincerely yours,

    Jim Bradley etc etc

    260

    • #
      Yonniestone

      At least with a shotgun you can see the impending doom….it allows us to embrace the diversity of true fear. :)

      110

      • #
        OriginalSteve

        At least in the USA, the bloke jumping the counter would be short lived… unlike in Oz where we are trained to cower in the corner….

        90

      • #
        Carbon500

        I believe it was American folksinger Woody Guthrie who observed that ‘some rob you with a gun, some with a fountain pen’.

        50

  • #
    Yonniestone

    Analogies are the creative way to explain our universe when mathematics become too much.

    80

  • #
    Ruairi

    It’s time that a Government axe,
    Abolished the failed carbon tax,
    As a warmist bad dream,
    Pushed this revenue scheme,
    With no basis in science or facts.

    301

  • #
    Mark Stoval

    The following quote is for Michael Harris should he happen to read this post and the comments in this thread.

    “It is no crime to be ignorant of economics, which is, after all, a specialized discipline and one that most people consider to be a ‘dismal science.’ But it is totally irresponsible to have a loud and vociferous opinion on economic subjects while remaining in this state of ignorance.” ― Murray N. Rothbard

    Yes, I do realize that Mr. Harris is said to have attended a few economics classes, but it is apparent that he was looking at the girls and not paying any attention.

    261

    • #
      James Bradley

      Mark,

      I’m all for observations based on sexual orientation, but let’s not stereotype Mr. Harris based on his theory.

      All we can really say for sure, gleaned from his writing, is that he is an economist and an academic with strong socialist values and a fanatical belief in man made global warming.

      All of these things are based firmly in statistics that by necessity defy real data, observations, common sense, and logic.

      For the record, i have nothing but the highest regard and respect for anyone that can carry this load of rubbish off, get published and stiIll be regarded as a legitimate reference.

      161

      • #
        Greg Cavanagh

        There is no need to have any regard, let alone high regard, for people who carry this rubbish off. It seems any two-bit brain cell can do it with any random collection of hyperbolic words. In fact some studies are exactly that and they do get published and quoted.

        I’d be more comfortable if you had the highest contempt for people who carry this rubbish off, personally.

        110

        • #
          James Bradley

          Aw geez, Greg,

          I was going to put the ‘sarc’ tag in, but I rather thought it may have been self evident.

          101

          • #
            Greg Cavanagh

            I guess it was because 3 of your 4 paragraphs were sensible. I simply accepted that you were saying is what you meant to say.

            40

            • #
              James Bradley

              Greg,

              I often use the old “I have nothing but the highest regard and respect” line at work to avoid copping a half sheet for insubordination.

              40

              • #
                JohnRMcD

                I came out of the “no BS” business of mining. I normally had no respect for BS; hence, when I was the responsible manager, I had NO time for mealy-mouthing. And when I was not the responsible manager, I still had no time for mealy-mouthed BS.
                Life is to short; and I am (now) too old for all this crap.

                50

              • #
                James Bradley

                Great point, John,

                You can do what you like once you’re the boss.

                00

  • #
    KinkyKeith

    First the University of NSW and now Sydney Uni join the despairing slide into academic irrelevance as a result of adherence to The Dogma of CAGW.

    KK

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    • #
      KinkyKeith

      29 Sep 2008

      Media Office, UNSW Sydney NSW 2052 Australia

      Top climate scientists urge PM to cut C02 emissions

      Australia’s leading climate scientists have written to the Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, urging him to adopt an emission reduction target for Australia of 25 percent below 1990 levels by 2020.

      KK

      40

  • #
    Peter Miller

    Another chapter in the great story of socialism’s successes, which regrettably have to be tempered by the sad fact that this worthy concept always ceases to work when the system runs out of other people’s money, as it inevitably always does.

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  • #
    tom0mason

    Michael Harris, Senior Fellow in the School of Economics at University of Sydney, though sophistry is to stop the onerous tedium of ‘tax’ by using the linguistical substitution of ‘transfer’.
    Simply put all he is advocating is a massive $15 billion expansion of government tax transfer and spend, all in the name of ‘reducing carbon emissions’.

    Somehow all this happens to the economy without the usual effects the dead hand of an government provides.
    Michael Harris justifies this “because the revenue raised could be used elsewhere in the economy to provide infrastructure or mitigate against climate change.” In other words the government will spend $15 billion of your money on their pet projects. Voters would be fully consulted on these projects — wouldn’t you?

    With Michael Harris’s method how much more would government expand, how much more would government intrude into peoples’?

    70

    • #
      ROM

      The word “Soviet” could so easily be slipped into Mr Harris’s proposal.
      Even the national flag could be altered to fit his particular economic views.
      I reckon a hammer as a symbol for industry, a sickle which Mr Harris no doubts knows how to use to fit the agricultural theme .
      And the rifle to maintain the Soviet’s integrity from outside capitalistic busy bodies.
      And paint it all red for a striking symbol.
      Probably leave the rifle off as it is inclined to be very threatening to anybody you are trying to woo to come into your orbit of influence.

      Although the way things are going the original owners of this design might want to resurrect it in the near future so Mr Harris will have to be quick to get his program implemented and lay claim to that name and flag and economic system and ideology.

      30

  • #
    ScotsmaninUtah

    Sometimes Jo asks the impossible

    Pretend for a minute that somehow the government managed to “compensate” the economy

    lest we forget “whose” money it is in the first place

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      Greg Cavanagh

      Apparently it’s all “economy’s”.

      There is also a difference between costs to the economy, and transfers within it. The amount of revenue raised through any tax is not a cost; it is simply a transfer from one “pocket” to “another”.

      Michael seems at ease that the money he earns can (or should) be usable by the community, and the money managed by the government.

      I believe the Swiss are the only community where this sort of thing is actually done successfully. Every other attempt throughout history has cause far more pain than gain, and stagnated invention at the same time.

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    el gordo

    ‘As a government, and indeed as a nation, we absolutely accept that climate change is real and taking action to combat it is an imperative.’

    Greg Hunt
    ——-

    This fella needs to get reshuffled over the winter break.

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  • #
    el gordo

    But the Abbott government is right about the renewable nonsense.

    ‘Retired software kingpin and richest man in the world Bill Gates has given his opinion that today’s renewable-energy technologies aren’t a viable solution for reducing CO2 levels, and governments should divert their green subsidies into R&D aimed at better answers.’

    The Register

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    • #
      KinkyKeith

      Exactly.

      Just think what a redirected CSIRO could do to improve the cost benefit of “Renewables” ( I hate that word) IF all the money currently circulating in the name of Carbon Reduction was placed at their disposal.

      KK

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    KinkyKeith

    It is no mean coincidence perhaps that the Greek Finance Minister leading Greece to economic glory is a lecturer from the same University as Mr Harris.

    KK

    90

    • #
      Dennis

      I heard a comment alleging that the Greek Finance Minister was experimenting with his economic theories.

      70

      • #
        Another Ian

        Like the comment about Rod Welford’s Masters degree in Environmental Science and his use of Queensland as the experiment with the native vegetation management act?

        40

      • #
        OriginalSteve

        I think any Finance Minister who stands up the the IMF and tells them to get lost and confronts their mafioso style economic standover tactics, should be applauded.

        If only more countries were like Iceland and started jailing people repsonsible for strip mining the economy via the predatory banks, the better.

        Some banks should be allowed to fail….serves them right.

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    Dennis

    This reminds me of the time when the Blair Labour Government of Great Britain commissioned a global warming study by the chief scientist, they didn’t like the result which apparently did not support the climate change agenda so they pushed the study aside and commissioned the chief economist to report on the consequences of ignoring the climate change agenda warnings.

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    • #
      OriginalSteve

      “Never hold an inquiry unless you know the outcome”

      - Sir Humprey Appleby
      “Yes Minister”

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  • #
    Bruce J

    Economic statements like this really do tend to prove the veracity of the old saying about economists being put on this earth to make astrologers look good!

    100

    • #
      Dennis

      Was it Churchill who once commented that he would like a one arm economist who could not say on the other hand?

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  • #
    Neville

    It never ceases to amaze me that these idiots actually think that we can mitigate their so called CAGW.
    Yet we know that projections out to 2040 show that over 90% of new co2 emissions will come from the non OECD.( China, India etc)
    And the latest RS and NAS report tells us that we could stop all emissions today and we still wouldn’t see a change in co2 levels or temps for thousands of years.
    Now whether you believe this doesn’t matter because Trenberth, Solomons etc really do believe it because they helped to write the latest report.
    Trenberth of course is a very prominent IPCC lead author. So why aren’t they telling govts before the Paris conference that they will be wasting 100s of trillions of $ for zero change to the climate?

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    Neville

    Sorry the last sentence above presumes we are stupid enough to follow this mitigation recipe into the discernible future.

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    manalive

    Let’s consider what we’re measuring and why.
    The social cost of carbon [dioxide] measures the expected cost to society of emitting “one more unit” of carbon [dioxide] into the atmosphere … flipped around, it tells us the benefit of not emitting that tonne of carbon …

    That argument can itself be flipped around, what is the cost of trying to cut CO2 emissions or the benefits of business-as-usual for the less developed two thirds of the world.
    Fortunately there is about 150 years of empirical evidence available to estimate the cost/benefit equation of fossil fuel use and incidentally increasing CO2 concentration in the atmosphere.
    The net benefits I guess are too enormous to calculate.

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    • #
      KinkyKeith

      hi manalive

      Not too sure about this bit: “and incidentally increasing CO2 concentration in the atmosphere”.

      We poor humans are really an inconsequential item in the list of residual CO2 makers and any “increase” in atmospheric CO2 is more than 95% certain to be other than man made

      :)

      ie. Nature did it and will keep on doing it until the core of the Earth is dead and cold or the Sun stops shining on us.

      KK

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      • #
        manalive

        OK KK, by ‘incidentally’ I meant “… accompanying but not a major part of something …” or “… occurring by chance in connection with something else …” (Oxford Dictionary of English).

        20

        • #
          KinkyKeith

          Gotcha

          What you said could just as easily have been read to mean that CO2 increase was co-incidental to the increased human activity and that CO2 could just as easily gone down in the same period.

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  • #
    Paul

    the cost of compensation
    It’s not free if some one else is paying for it.

    20

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    Neville

    Yet another study finds that the Sun has a pronounced influence over our climate over the last one thousand years and for millions of years.
    http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.com.au/2015/06/paper-finds-pronounced-influence-of.html

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  • #
    Another Ian

    Jo,

    Keeping to economics via light rail

    http://www.coyoteblog.com/coyote_blog/2015/06/even-at-the-margin-with-capital-charges-sunk-light-rail-economics-are-awful.html

    Which leads to this look at Will Steffen’s approach to statistical analysis

    http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/will_steffen_demonstrates_how_to_hide_a_decline/

    And

    “Cater concludes:

    This insight into Steffen’s methodology may cause us to look afresh at his startling claims about climate change and his forecasts for the end of the world as we know it.”

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  • #
    AJ

    “There are some things so absurd only an intellectual would believe them.”

    George Orwell

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    el gordo

    Greg Hunt ‘graduated from Melbourne Law School with a Bachelor of Laws (First Class Honours), where he won a prize for a final year thesis he co-authored entitled A Tax to Make the Polluter Pay.’

    I rest my case.

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  • #

    The meteorologists are feeding from the trough and the economists want in!
    Show a little understanding.

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  • #
    Skeptik

    Time the government “transferred” the money running this clowns department back to general revenue. As this would be done at no “cost” to the good professors finances he would have no cause for complaint.

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    Robber

    So following the logic of Michael Harris, Senior Fellow in the School of Economics at University of Sydney, we would all be far better off if the carbon tax had been set at $500/ton instead of a mere $23/ton. Because then the government would have had much more money to disperse to its friends.
    Meanwhile all industries that could go offshore would do so – goodbye aluminium, steel, cars, other manufactured goods.
    But don’t worry, the government will provide??

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    ScotsmaninUtah

    Supreme Court strikes down EPA’s “Mercury and Air Toxic Rule”

    In a 5-4 decision today, the Supreme Court struck down the EPA’s “Mercury and Air Toxic Rule,” which regulates emissions by fossil-fuel-fired power plants.

    In the past the EPA “interpreted” the regulatory language meaning to preclude them from considering the costs of regulation —some $10 billion per year :o

    That interpretation“, the Supreme Court decided…. was ludicrous !! :D

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    • #
      Dave in the states

      But did you see how the Obama regime responded? They basically said that they were still going to do what ever they want regardless. The arrogance is stunning. We are not too far away from a bureaucratic dictatorship. The administrative state sets policy and the other branches of the government, and the individual states, rubber stamp it and enable it. If they fail to rubber stamp it, then it doesn’t matter to Obama and his technocrats. The have essentially won. The Constitution is hanging by a thread.

      Last week Obama had three big wins:

      1) The Senate (which the House denied him less than two weeks ago) gave Obama fast track authority to set the terms of trade agreements. This will set a precedent that Obama will use in Paris come Nov. Very bad.

      2 & 3)Two Supreme Court rulings on Obama Care and Gay Marriage that essentially ended even what was left of State’s Rights and the separation of power doctrines written into the Constitution. This was what these issues were really all about. It wasn’t about fairness to gay people or equal access to health care, and provides neither.

      This how the modern left operates. They use issues as battering rams to drive forward their agenda. They are using CAWG to drive forward socialism on an international scale. The passionate scientists in their employ are just “useful idiots.” Science needs to step back and take a dispassionate look at what is really going on.

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  • #
    RoHa

    ‘If the government owned the lot, nothing would cost anything. Everyone could buy everything, and be compensated for it!’

    But I don’t think this necessarily implies

    ‘“Experts” would be in control of everything… central planning is optimal’

    Even if the ownership is in the hands of the government rather than some faceless corporations, actual day-to-day control could still be in the hands of salaried managers who respond to public demand for goods and services, and who would lose their jobs if they did not respond well. No central planning necessary.

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    • #
      James Murphy

      How can anyone realistically hope to differentiate between a faceless corporation running the show, and ‘big government’ running the show?

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    ROM

    Just digging around for some relevant data on the Australian carbon taxes, figuring that we are already paying very big money in renewable energy subsidies which are a unneeded and increasingly unaffordable imposed tax for an unreliable, grossly inefficient form of a displacement of conventional energy generators, not a replacement for conventional generators as the original coal, gas and oil fired fueled generators have to stay in place to generate power when the wind stops blowing and the sun sets.
    All the while idling at their most inefficient levels of fuel usage ready to immediately pick up the load when solar and wind generators suddenly go off line so as to maintain a constant steady supply of electrical power which our civilisation is now so dependent on.

    And from this pro renewable energy site checked by the infamous Climate Institute, I found this.
    [ dated August 2014 ]

    The Renewable Energy Target is a subsidy. Building new wind and solar costs more than existing coal and gas generation. The RET enables solar and wind providers to sell renewable energy certificates to make up the difference between the electricity they sell and the costs of building new power stations. The cost of the certificates—the subsidy to renewables—is paid by electricity consumers through their power bills.

    This cost totals approximately $2 billion per year. To date this support has driven $18 billion investment in renewable energy, which has increased wind and solar power twenty- four-fold since 2001. This underpins around 21,000 jobs and has reduced carbon emissions by more than 20 million tonnes.

    From the quote above.;

    1 / This [ renewable subsidy ] cost totals approximately $2 billion per year.
    2 / This underpins around 21,000 jobs

    Conclusion ;
    EACH JOB in Australia’s renewable energy industries cost tax payers through subsidies to the renewable energy companies, over $95,000 per year.
    And this $95,000 / year extra per job created in the renewable energy industries is over and above the wage and salary costs already paid by the companies to their employees out of the inflated tariffs of the wind and solar generators.

    And some economic ding bat wants even more taxes on consumers to further achieve no visible or measurable effects on anything at all except to deny even further the rights of citizens to make their own choices on what they will do with their own hard earned income.

    ___________

    Back in March 2009 some Spanish University researchers released a paper entitled;

    Study of the effects on employment of public aid to renewable energy sources

    The utter stupidity of the extraordinarily generous Spanish subsidies of that period [ and Australia's today ] to their renewable energy industries which led to an over 30 billion Euro government deficit by 2012 /13 can be seen in these figures from the study.

    Outcomes re CO2 reductions and climate effects are not measurable!

    VII Conclusion;

    In table 3 we summarize the results achieved in terms of employment, subsidies and investment in the three main renewable industries
    Since 2000, the renewable subsidies have created less than 50,200 jobs.
    This amounts to 0.2% of Spain’s workforce and 0.25% of Spain ́s employed workforce.

    We can see that the average subsidy per worker added in these three sources of renewable energies is more than half a million Euros (€571,138), ranging from €542,825 per worker added in or by the mini-hydro sector and two-thirds of a million Euros per worker added in or by the photovoltaic sector, to well over €1 million per worker added in or by the wind industry.
    **********
    Figure 10.- Employment destroyed per installed megawatt

    [ graphs ]

    As we can see in figure 10, each renewable megawatt installed, on average (given Spain’s breakdown of individual source contributions), destroys 5.28 jobs,
    compared with the 4.27 jobs destroyed per megawatt of wind energy,
    the 5.05 jobs destroyed per megawatt of mini-hydro
    and the 8.99 destroyed per megawatt of photovoltaic installed capacity as a result of “green jobs” mandates, subsidies and related regimes.

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  • #
    handjive

    2013: Polar bears, penguins… and now surfers, the latest victims of climate change

    As climate change warms the world’s oceans, waves are likely to shrink across nearly 40% of the planet during prime surfing season, according to a new CSIRO study.

    2015: Surfer breaks leg taking on ‘probably the biggest wave ever ridden in Australia’

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  • #
    pat

    the economics wasn’t going down too well, so we turned to religion:

    27 June: Guardian: On climate change, Hispanic Catholics hear pope’s message – and it’s personal
    Long before Pope Francis called for the faithful to work toward environmental justice, water and drought were natural concerns for many in the western US and willing disciples may galvanize like never before
    CAPTION: Statue of Virgin of Guadalupe in St. Francis Cathedral, Santa Fe, New Mexico.
    by Suzanne Goldenberg in Santa Fe
    As priests speak out from the pulpit and the ranks, their advocacy on climate change could eventually help build the critical mass of public support needed to push political leaders to take the bold action…
    The question in both cases is whether a wildly popular and progressive pope can make a difference in the face of a slow-moving existential threat…
    But there had never been a mobilisation on the scale of the one gathering behind the pope. With Francis’s message out, young people are getting involved.
    “I’ve never seen anything like this in the faith community or otherwise,” she said. “I just haven’t seen this kind of enthusiasm. It is kind of like looking forward to a new light.”
    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/jun/27/climate-change-hispanic-catholics-message-willing-disciples

    22 June: International Business Times: Lora Moftah: Pope Francis Climate Change Encyclical: Sunday Church Sermons Quiet On The Environment, Despite Pontiff’s ‘Urgent’ Call
    Pope Francis may have emphasized the urgency of his appeal on climate change after the release of a much-anticipated encyclical on the subject last week but it’s not clear that this message has been echoing from pulpits in churches across the world just yet. Few priests or bishops outside of parts of Latin America addressed the pope’s environmental call or the contents of his landmark document in Sunday church sermons this week, the New York Times reported.
    “There has not been that much awareness among parish priests of climate change,” the Rev. Aris Sison, a spokesman for the Diocese of Cubao in the Philippines’ capital Manila, told the Times. Parishes in Rome, Mumbai, Lagos and Nairobi, along with those in some US states and even in Francis’ hometown of Buenos Aires similarly did not mention the encyclical during Mass on Sunday…
    ***“Climate change isn’t the sort of thing [bishops] would have learned in the seminary or through their course of study or basic administration,” the Rev. James Bretzke, a professor of moral theology at Boston College, told International Business Times in an interview last week…
    ***But priests in many countries will soon be receiving guides from their bishops conferences with suggestions on how to teach the encyclical in their parishes, the Times said. The USCCB has already released such a guide and made it available online, including recommended discussion prompts like, “What changes can we make to our lifestyles, production and consumption to better care for one another and creation?”
    http://www.ibtimes.com/pope-francis-climate-change-encyclical-sunday-church-sermons-quiet-environment-1977709?rel=rel1

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    • #
      Angry

      Pat,
      We are regular Sunday Churchgoers.
      If this BS is spewd forth from the altar we will cease attending.
      We are fuming at this treasonous deluded “pope” !!

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      • #
        Dennis

        I suspect that Church politics and wealth creation played a large role in the cyclical. The third world now provides far more priests and nuns than the developed world does and many more practising Catholics. The climate change con promises to deliver wealth from the developed world to the third world. Accordingly it is in the best interests of the Church to be seen as a facilitator.

        Another reason would be the investments made by the Church, renewable energy businesses?

        And then maybe the leftist political views of Pope Francis who comes from a poor nation?

        10

        • #
          manalive

          ‘The climate change con promises to deliver wealth from the developed world to the third world …’.
          That’s right, from the relatively poor in rich countries to the relatively rich in poor countries.
          ‘… Accordingly it is in the best interests of the Church to be seen as a facilitator commission agent …’.

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  • #
    pat

    28 June: Guardian: Dalai Lama tells Glastonbury of the need to speak out on climate change
    Tibetan spiritual leader endorses pope’s radical message on environment and calls for more pressure to be put on international governments
    by Hannah Ellis-Petersen and Josh Halliday
    The Dalai Lama has endorsed the pope’s radical message on climate change and called on fellow religious leaders to “speak out about current affairs which affect the future of mankind”.
    The spiritual Buddhist leader was speaking at Glastonbury festival on a panel discussing issues of global warming alongside Katharine Viner, the Guardian’s editor, and the Guardian columnist George Monbiot…
    Monbiot took the opportunity to appeal to Glastonbury to go further with its efforts to be ecologically friendly. He asked: “Why aren’t we calling for Glastonbury to be meat-free and fish-free?”…
    http://www.theguardian.com/music/2015/jun/28/dalai-lama-glastonbury-verdict-isis-unthinkable

    check out all the photos – guess the Dalai Lama provided a few laughs!

    29 June: UK Daily Mail: The ‘hippy crack’ clean-up begins: Glastonbury littered with hundreds of laughing gas canisters and balloons as revellers leave a mountain of rubbish behind
    Litter picking crew of 800 have already begun to clear site of rubbish and tractors will travel across 900-acre farm
    They have back-breaking task of picking up an estimated 1,650 tonnes of waste and around 5,000 abandoned tents
    Tractors carrying magnetic strips will travel across the site to pick up tent pegs while workers will carry out a fingertip search to make sure no inch of the land goes unchecked.
    Workers will be extra cautious of stray tent pegs as cows grazing the site have died in previous years after eating them.
    It is thought the clear up could last around six weeks, before the land can be restored to a working dairy farm…
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3142856/As-year-s-Glastonbury-closes-big-clean-begins.html

    10

  • #
    pat

    26 June: UK Independent: Matilda Battersby: Glastonbury 2015: Has the hippie crack balloon burst? What is nitrous oxide anyway?
    Last year more than two tonnes of used nitrous oxide containers were picked up from the fields of Glastonbury…
    But the legal high, colloquially known as both laughing gas and hippie crack, has become the second-most used recreational drug in Britain, taken by a reported 400,000 16 to 24-year-olds last year…
    Walk around Glastonbury today and you may come across people inhaling colourful balloons full of the stuff…
    Deaths linked to nitrous oxide are thankfully rare but an exploding canister is believed to have been the cause of a “major injury” at Glastonbury last year…
    In April the co-ordinator of Glastonbury’s Green Fields, Liz Eliot, wrote a blog imploring festival-goers to leave nitrous oxide at home this year…
    ***She cited the environmental impact (it is nearly 300 times more damaging to the atmosphere than carbon dioxide) as well as other dangers associated with the drugs and requested that revellers keep it out of the King’s Meadow – the area of the site containing the Stone Circle.
    “Sadly the King’s Meadow has lost its way,” she wrote. “It’s become known as a place where people take nitrous oxide, a damaging drug which pollutes our beautiful field with noise, litter and N20 gas…Nitrous oxide is also dangerous: an exploding canister was the source of a major injury at last year’s Glastonbury.”…
    Pictures from day one of the festival show some discarded canisters but according to The Independent’s spies on the ground so far only a few people are blatantly inhaling the drug and it seems to be the activity of a few rather than a lot. But that hasn’t stopped the tabloids from splashing pictures of youngsters breathing in balloons for breakfast all over front pages…
    http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/music/festivals/glastonbury-2015-has-the-hippie-crack-balloon-burst-what-is-nitrous-oxide-anyway-10348683.html

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  • #
    Another Ian

    Re economics

    I am reminded of the story of the economics professor who always set the same questions – on the grounds that every year the answers were different.

    Sounds like a sure bet at Sydney Uni this year.

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  • #

    Here is, on what reasons ”carbon tax” is demanded; for fleecing the Urban Sheep: https://globalwarmingdenier.wordpress.com/global-warming-lost-its-compass-again/

    30

    • #
      el gordo

      ‘The colder the ice, the more it expends and pushes bigger chunks off the cliff; always was happening, and always will!’

      A good debating point.

      20

  • #
    pat

    & the meetings go on and on…

    29 June: RTCC: Ed King: UN targets climate ‘momentum’ at New York summit
    CRIB NOTES JUNE 29-JULY 3: Redford headlines UN meet, EU-China plan accord, UK set for fracking showdown
    UN SUMMIT – Ban Ki moon, Laurent Fabius, Manuel Pulgar Vidal and – ***wait for it – Robert Redford. Some of the speakers taking part in a high level event on climate change convened by the UN president of the General Assembly later today in New York. It’s not part of any set of negotiations towards a proposed Paris deal later this year, but is meant to “keep up the momentum” and the organisers promise “thematic debates” on key climate issues such as forests, finance, adaptation and the like…
    EU-CHINA SUMMIT – the 17th summit between Brussels and Beijing takes place today. According to an agenda published on the EU’s website the two blocs will issue a joint statement outlining how the EU and China can work together on addressing climate change…
    AUSSIE ACTION – Today 10 of the country’s top industry, environmental and trade union organisations announced a “broad alliance” on how the government should tackle climate change…
    WORLD CITIES – Significant meeting of regional and city leaders in Lyon on July 1-2 for a UN-backed “Dialogue and proposals of non-state actors”. Speakers include Francois Hollande, Christiana Figueres plus mayors from China, Malawi, Morocco, Belgium and Canada… http://www.rtcc.org/2015/06/29/un-targets-climate-momentum-ahead-of-new-york-summit/

    ***wait for it – Robert Redford:

    28 June: CNN: Redford: Time to step up game on climate change
    by Robert Redford
    I believe climate change is the defining environmental issue of our time. It’s hurting our people — around the world — and it’s time to stand up and say we’ve had enough. Enough of rising seas and widening deserts that threaten our homes and our crops. Enough of withering drought and blistering heat that mean more malnutrition and disease. Enough of raging floods, wildfires and storms that threaten people everywhere with one disaster after another…
    When we burn coal, oil and natural gas, we choke our atmosphere with the dangerous carbon pollution that’s driven global temperatures up about 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit in a little more than a century…
    We have to clean up our dirty power plants; invest in energy efficiency, so we can do more with less waste; and get more of our electricity from the wind and sun…
    President Barack Obama has pledged to cut our carbon pollution and others of the so-called greenhouse gases that are warming our planet by up to 28% over the next 10 years…
    China — the world’s largest producer of greenhouse gases — has said it will cap its emissions by 2030 and begin reducing them from there. Mexico, India and other countries are stepping up to the plate as well…
    I know the fossil fuel industry and its political cronies are saying the Pope’s no expert on science.
    Please.
    The science speaks for itself…
    I’ve been at this for a long time now.
    Nearly 30 years ago, in fact, when the United States and the Soviet Union were still Cold War archrivals, I helped convene a summit where top policymakers and scientists from both countries agreed that we needed to cut carbon pollution.
    That was decades ago, and we’ve been waiting for real action ever since. Today, though, I’m more optimistic than ever…
    Obama understands the stakes in this for our country…
    These kids aren’t sitting around arguing about whether climate change is real. They can read the handwriting on the wall
    They don’t want to hear a bunch of excuses from politicians who are stuck in the 1950s…
    http://edition.cnn.com/2015/06/28/opinions/redford-climate-change/

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    • #
      Spetzer86

      “These kids aren’t sitting around arguing about whether climate change is real. They can read the handwriting on the wall”

      And it’s literally the handwriting on the wall. The kids are being force fed climate change from kindergarten through college. That they then regurgitate this information on demand is not surprising.

      Makes you wonder what else the educational hierarchy is putting into our children’s heads. http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com

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    • #
      Dave in the states

      Redford is only offering up the same old list of assumptions we usually see from the scientific illiterates:

      Assumptions:

      That storms, floods, wild fires, and other weather events, are caused by man made climate change. The assumption being that such events are outside the range of natural variance.

      That rising sea levels and changing deserts are unnatural, outside the range of natural variance.

      That co2 released from the burning of carbon fuels is a dangerous pollutant which is “choking” our atmosphere.

      That man made co2 is “warming our planet.”

      That GHGs have driven up our temps by 1.5*F (F?)

      That 1.5*F (really?) is significant, once again beyond the range of natural variance.

      That we must get rid of our “dirty” power and replace it with wind and solar.

      That wind and solar can actually replace “dirty” power.

      That wind and solar..and so forth are “more efficient.”

      That reducing man made carbon output will make any difference to the climate.

      That China, India, and Mexico are “stepping up to the plate” and not just playing lip service.

      I’m sure there are more mere assumptions presented as facts, but I’m done for now.

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  • #
    pat

    26 June: Alex Pashley: Euroland: psyched and ready for climate charm offensive
    The European Union has its climate negotiating priorities set out on six-foot banners, but will it get its way in Paris?
    To date, 39 countries have stated how they will cut CO2 emissions by 2030, with ***more than a hundred yet to deliver. Together these pledges, called “intended nationally determined contributions”, will fall short in curbing global warming, analysts say.
    “We know the glass is not even half full, a third full maybe, in terms of what it needs to be to get to 2C [internationally agreed warming limit],” a senior EU source told a reporters briefing in Brussels, which RTCC attended this week…
    Any deal must be legally binding, countries must sign up to five-year reviews to deepen carbon cuts, and an old firewall dividing rich and poor nations must be dismantled, runs the EU wishlist…
    Will Brussels get its way?
    Diplomacy is central. The bloc of 28 countries is drawing on a network of 3,000 diplomats abroad to advance its interests, and has a database with details of the stances of countries’ opposite numbers in environment and foreign ministries, it says…
    But it’s no homogenous bloc. Poland, the Czech Republic and several Baltic states that rely on coal bridle at those targets…
    ***As for the EU’s fixation on a legally binding treaty, that crosses one of the US “red lines”…
    The UN process is a “complex exercise,” said (commissioner for climate and energy, Miguel Arias) Canete, and “we mustn’t get bogged down in the wording.”
    So determined is he to strike a deal, the commissioner and head of EU delegation will go into overtime if he has to.
    “If there are three more days of work let’s have it… If I need another week I will keep on negotiating.”
    http://www.rtcc.org/2015/06/26/euroland-psyched-and-ready-for-climate-charm-offensive/

    29 June: Bloomberg: Alex Nussbaum: 100 Billion Reasons a Global Climate-Change Deal May Fall Apart
    The richest nations still haven’t convinced the rest of the world they’re willing to pay the tab to help curb climate change, diplomats warned at a United Nations conference Monday…
    With five months to go before a critical conference that’s expected to result in a global emissions pact, developing nations say they’re still waiting for proof the richest countries will meet a $100 billion-a-year pledge to help them curb greenhouse gases and adapt to a warming world. The concerns threaten to undermine talks aimed at reaching an agreement in Paris in December…
    “The first and critical step to gain trust is for the developed countries to honor their pledges,” Khaled Fahmy, Egypt’s environment minister, told attendees at UN headquarters in New York. Wealthier countries have to provide “clarity on fulfilling their commitment.”…
    To reach a deal this year, “credible climate financing is essential,” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told the conference…
    In a joint statement on Sunday, China, India, South Africa and Brazil said the talks had made progress but they were disappointed over “the continued lack of any clear road map for developed countries” to meet the $100 billion pledge…
    So far, the countries have pledged about $10 billion for one UN agency, the Green Climate Fund, but not all the money has actually been delivered…
    “The pace of UN negotiations are far too slow,” Ban said. “It’s like a snail’s pace.”…
    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-06-29/un-leader-says-climate-talks-won-t-hit-mark-to-limit-warming

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    pat

    coal is king:

    30 June: NDTV: Coal India Gains Over 2%; Morgan Stanley Maintains Overweight
    Coal India shares gained over 2 per cent to an intraday high of Rs 416.80 on Tuesday after global brokerage major Morgan Stanley maintained ‘outperform’ rating on the stock with a target price of Rs 530 per share. This indicates a potential upside of 30 per cent over Monday’s closing price.
    ***Morgan Stanley says Coal India looks much better positioned for growth. The brokerage expects 31 per cent CAGR in the EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) of Coal India over FY2015-18, showing conviction in its volume growth and pricing power.
    Coal India shares have rallied over 6 per cent in the past one month and 14.4 per cent in three months outperforming the broader Sensex…
    ***The government aims to double Coal India’s production to 1,000 million tonnes in next five years…
    http://profit.ndtv.com/news/market/article-coal-india-gains-over-2-morgan-stanley-maintains-overweight-776648

    29 June: Bloomberg: Ex-Xstrata CEO’s X2 Said to Be in Talks With Rio on Coal
    by Javier BlasFirat Kayakiran
    X2 Resources, the private-equity firm founded by former Xstrata Chief Executive Officer Mick Davis, is in talks to buy Rio Tinto Group’s controlling stake in three Australian coal mines, according to two people familiar with the matter…
    The Rio mines in New South Wales have positive cash flow, despite the current coal-price slump, the person said…
    “They’re good mines, they’re large scale, long-life and have relatively low costs. If you have an interest in thermal coal you could do a lot worse than buying these assets,” Chris Drew, a Sydney-based analyst with RBC Capital Markets, said by phone…
    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-06-29/ex-xstrata-ceo-s-x2-said-to-be-in-talks-with-rio-on-coal

    29 June: Marketwatch: Steve Goldstein: Coal stocks climb as Supreme Court strikes down EPA regulation
    Coal stocks rallied Monday in wake of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling the Environmental Protection Agency needs to consider costs when regulating pollution caused by coal-fired plants…

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    pat

    o/t but some important lessons to be learned here:

    30 June: UK Daily Mail: Colin Fernandez: Lecturer who first accused ‘sexist’ Nobel Prize professor keeps her job despite the Mail revealing her dubious claims about her career (but has been told to ‘update’ her CV)
    University has ‘spoken to’ Mrs St Louis and will ‘help her update her CV’
    Yesterday, the university issued a statement admitting that it had now ‘spoken to’ Mrs St Louis and would ‘help her update her CV’. But it did not explain what her academic qualifications were…
    Leading academics described Mrs St Louis’s apparent falsification of her CV as a serious matter yesterday.
    Alan Smithers, a professor in education at the University of Buckingham, said: ‘When you get on your high horse, you must make sure you have four strong legs.
    ‘If she has misdescribed her academic qualifications, that would be serious. You would expect the university would want to investigate.’
    A spokesman for City University only said: ‘We have spoken to Connie and are satisfied that her academic qualifications are correct…
    ‘We will be working with her to update her profile page to include more recent publications and professional activities.’
    Sir Andre Geim, himself a Nobel prizewinner for his work on graphene, said he had not expected City to take any action against Mrs St Louis.
    He said: ‘No Vice Chancellor would take on an ethnic-minority militant feminist. Those are not humble Nobel laureates who can be forced to resign quietly.’
    In a statement yesterday, Mrs St Louis, 58, claimed the allegations against her were ‘inaccurate and misleading’.
    Adding that while response to her story was ‘overwhelmingly positive’ she said: ‘My reputation is being attacked by a story which draws attention to an out-of-date version of my website.’
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3143945/Lecturer-accused-sexist-Nobel-Prize-professor-keeps-job-despite-Mail-revealing-dubious-claims-career-told-update-CV.html

    28 June: Spectator Blog: Damian Thompson: Connie St Louis, the woman who brought down Sir Tim Hunt, faces questions over her CV. Where’s the media coverage?
    Investigative reporter Guy Adams, writing in yesterday’s Mail, has taken a long, hard look at her CV – and is puzzled by claims he found on City’s website …blah blah
    You can read his investigation here, on the Mail site.
    ***But, as of midday on Sunday, I couldn’t find any evidence that the Guardian/Observer and the BBC were pursuing what, in my opinion, is a big story. Maybe they’ll get round to it…
    https://blogs.spectator.co.uk/damian-thompson/2015/06/connie-st-louis-the-woman-who-brought-down-sir-tim-hunt-faces-questions-over-her-cv-wheres-the-media-coverage/

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    Bulldust

    The luvvies must be in heaven – Attenbrough and Obama discuss climate change at the Rainbow House:

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-06-29/barack-obama-david-attenborough-talk-climate-change-white-house/6580448

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      Another Ian

      Bulldust

      I can’t remember whether it was BH or WUWT but there was a comment on this along the lines of

      “Pot meets kettle”

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    pat

    29 June: UK Register: Smart meters set to cost Blighty as much as replacing Trident
    Smart meters will cost as much as the Trident nuclear deterrent to implement, with the full cost of the scheme rising to £19bn, according to a government report.
    Total lifetime costs of the programme have now risen by £2bn since 2013, according to a report by the Major Projects Authority.
    In contrast, the Trident replacement programme has a cost estimated at between £17.5bn and £23.4bn.
    Surprisingly, the smart meter project has been flagged as “amber” — meaning “successful delivery appears feasible but significant issues already exist.”
    This is despite a number of warnings that the programme is in danger of turning into a “costly failure”.
    Earlier this year a report by the Energy and Climate Change Committee said it does “not believe” plans to install 53 million devices in homes and businesses by 2020 will be achieved…
    The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) is one of three government departments to take the lion’s share of big project spend.
    Of the £489bn locked into 188 big projects over the next 40 years, projects at DECC, the Ministry of Defence and the Department for Transport contribute soak up 80 per cent.
    The report said this reflects the high capital cost of “innovative defence equipment, ***of new energy infrastructure that will tackle climate change, and of modernising the UK’s transport infrastructure.”…
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2015/06/29/costs_of_smart_meters_rise_to_19bn/

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    Richard M

    Maybe I could hack Mr Harris’ bank account and spend the money therein on beer and dancing girls. Obviously the money wouldn’t be lost; no, no, no – it would simply be a transfer within the economy and he could therefore derive vicarious pleasure from the happiness this spending gives me; not to mention the pleasure of helping to employ brewery workers and the pleasure of supporting deserving dancing girls.

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    Geoffrey Williams

    I would like to ask Michael Harris a simple question:
    Are we as a nation trying to achieve one or either of the following statements:-
    1. Reduce / mitigate the effects of emissions of CO2 to the atmosphere in order to save the planet from the greatest catastrophe of all time (CAGW).
    2. Or are we trying to raise taxes / revenue within Australia in order to pass onto the IPCC(and cripple our economy in the process)
    If your answer is ‘yes’ to the former (and assuming that you accept the argument of CAGW) then surely you must also accept that the government has found a better, simpler and environmentally more friendly solution to mitigate CO2 and at a much lower cost!
    If the objective is the latter of the two, then the Abbot government has saved Australians a massive amount of money that would otherwise have gone into the pockets of the IPCC!
    Hopefully future decisions of the government will also do away with the expensive requirements for “senior fellows” at the University of Sydney school of economics!
    Regards
    Geoffrey Williams

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    Dariusz

    “All hail the USSA” presumably that is USSR?
    Or a new distription of Obumer new world order?

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    Andrew

    To be honest, I didn’t hate the World’s Biggest Carbon Tax all THAT much, as at least we were paying it to ourselves as this clown says. When the CEF modelling said that 92% of our “abatement” would come from Enormous Trading Scam payments to the 3rd world, that’s FAR worse. The WBCT was an economic disaster but compared to sending $57bn overseas for literally nothing??

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    Pouncer

    This theory of economically indistinguishable “pockets” …

    Is it then true that $100 in the pocket of Bill Gates or Gina Rinehart is indistinguishable in the economic effects from $1 each in the pockets of 100 pensioners, widows, or orphans? That a software guru, and a mining heiress will spend their money in the same exact way that hand-to-mouth families will? That, in particular, Reinhart spends the same percentage of her wealth in the beer, cigarette, and television entertainment industries as Australians in general?

    Because, if the pockets are in fact indistinguishable, the whole accusation that the so-called 1% are NOT carrying on their fair share of the support for the economy seems to fall apart.

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    observa

    These idiots couldn’t even organize a cap and trade system with Murray/Darling water licences within our own national jurisdiction and yet they wanted to cap and trade thin air all over the globe. Stink locally and daydream globally.

    It’s like this tossers. We could have bought out the entire Chicago Climate Exchange’s thin air derivatives for nickels and proudly flaunted them to the world we were now carbon neutral and rolled over and gone back to sleep. Naturally that’s after we issued lots of Greek bonds and crowd-sourced them to all sorts of Hollywood compassionatte to have a slice of the action.

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    Reed Coray

    My take on all this is that the School of Economics at the University of Sidney is one entrance to Alice In Wonderland’s rabbit hole. A university whose economics department employs the likes of Michael Harris has joined the legion of bubble-headed organizations who believe words mean no more and no less than what the speaker/writer wants them to mean.

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    Victor Ramirez

    Ridiculus and embarrassing to all Syd Uni Eco faculty alumni.

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