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Abbott still leading — his “Direct Action” plan to reduce CO2 cheaply (without renewables) is back

Posted By Jo Nova On September 18, 2018 @ 3:31 pm In Global Warming,Politics | Comments Disabled

Still leading the nation from the back bench

Scott Morrison wants to meet the Paris agreement and have cheap electricity. The have-cake: throw-cake-in-river option. How to resolve that dilemma (or at least have an answer for his Environment Minister, Melissa Price to give) — repeat the Tony Abbott plan.

“Direct Action” uses an auction system to find the cheapest ways to reduce CO2 — which obviously rules out intermittent renewables because they are wildly expensive.  Abbott is painted as a denier, yet his plan was more effective at reducing CO2 than any of the Green’s schemes. Naturally this only makes the cult believers hate him more — because he threatens the cash cow for dependent renewables. He exposes how useless wind and solar are and thus, how most greens are hypocritical self-serving political activists who pretend to care for the environment in order to get rich, go on junkets, or pump their ego while they fly to skiing trips in Japan.

Direct Action back on the agenda

Graham Lloyd, The Australian

The Coalition will refocus environment policies on the Abbott-era Direct Action plan, including a rebooted Green Army and a ­reverse auction scheme to ­improve land management and help communities, ­Environment Minister Melissa Price has ­declared.

Melissa Price: We can meet Paris targets responsibly

Naturally, and for no good reason, this is not thanks to Abbott:

“I do not see it as a return (to Abbott-era policies). We have had very good environmental programs under Tony Abbott and Malcolm Turnbull.”

Direct Action reduces CO2 for $13 per ton

Wind Turbines cost seven times as much to reduce CO2. Solar PV is at best $110/ton (EIA), and in a badly managed plan, more like $2,000/ton. At best in Australia the RET (Renewable Energy Target) costs $57 per ton of reduction. We could reduce four times as much CO2 if we blew up the RET plan and used Direct Action.

The economy-wide scheme was the star-studded absolute worst — the Carbon Tax cost $5310 per ton — 300 times more expensive than the Direct Action auction.

There is about $250 million left of the $2.5bn original budget funding for the emissions reduction fund. The last auction in June supported 32 projects to save 6.67 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions at an average price of $13.52 a tonne.

Direct Action proved to be up to 300 times more effective per dollar than the Carbon Tax. Where are the Green cheers?

That $2.5 billion was still $2.5 billion too much, but at least it improves soil, adds trees and has a few redeeming side benefits. Better than a scheme supporting jobs in China, banker’s yachts, and the installation of grid-destroying infrastructure. Why pay to make our electricity expensive, destroy jobs and our quality of life?

As I’ve said before, the only problem with Direct Action is that it doesn’t feed the parasites:

What Direct Action won’t “achieve” is a class of dependent corporates

The most important outcome is that, unlike a carbon market, there won’t be a new dependent class of companies who have to go to Parliament lobbyist-in-hand to beg or butter-up MP’s. With a blanket carbon tax, every industry wants carbon permits, or free passes, for themselves to keep doing business as usual. The carbon market of the EU, Rudd, and Gillard fosters these sort of deals and pleas. Big-government could use subsidies to feed industries that will vote and cheer for them (think renewables). They could use the fake free markets to put reigns on the real free market. (What would stop them?) The miners, the electricity generators, the manufacturers generate independent wealth and power, and if they choose to, they could run major campaigns against the big-government taxes and imposts. But if they need to ask special favours, they are less likely to rock the boat. A carbon price is just another tool to keep them in line and obedient; it sure isn’t much good at reducing carbon.

Thanks to Eric Huxter for estimating the solar PV cost of CO2 abatement in Australia.

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