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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Australia’s new NEG National Energy Plan hides a carbon tax, international carbon credits

Graham Lloyd points out we are back where started — a national plan involving international carbon credits:

RepuTex analyst Hugh Grossman says the NEG, in effect, ­will establish a de facto price on greenhouse gas emissions from the power sector.

The government already has indicated that the electricity companies may be able to purchase international or domestic carbon credits to cover any overruns. This remains dangerous political territory for the federal government, which was forced to rule out unequivocally a carbon tax or market-based trading scheme when the ­review was first announced. A crucial decision will be how to manage the safeguards mechanism under which big emitter companies will be curtailed in growing their emissions.

This was the point that played a part in destroying two Prime Ministers here, and one opposition leader –  Turnbull got tossed out in 2009 for Abbott over his support for the emissions trading scheme. Abbott pandered in too many respects to the carbonistas, but he always said emphatically “no” to international carbon credits. If we funnel money offshore for atmospheric nullities over China, we truly get nothing at all in return, and worse, we feed the crony crooks, the financial [...]

“Green” cars cause real pollution, and now scamming fuel economy too – Half the CO2 “cuts” imaginary

Carbon markets = corruption

Fake markets are easy to scam, because no one really wants or cares about “the product”. Fake markets are dangerous tools. Judging by the way people act, the point of carbon markets is to feed bureaucrats and bankers, not to change the weather.  If that’s true, it’s entirely predictable that yet another scandal has run for years, and no one “noticed” or acted to stop it. Not only were diesel cars scamming the lab tests for pollution, but other cars were built to exploit loopholes (that may be legal) in the lab tests for fuel economy as well. The audacity is remarkable — real car CO2 emissions are often a gobsmacking 40- 50% higher than reported, even in top brand, expensive cars.*

As much as two-thirds of CO2 cuts since 2008 may have been imaginary and made by cars that were only fuel efficient in the lab. CO2 “pollution” doesn’t hurt anyone, but misleading fuel economy figures may have cost owners €450 a year more in fuel to run. The companies known to get suspiciously good results on fuel economy (so far) are BMW, Mercedes, Renault and Peugeot. Companies using software to get around other pollution [...]

Lo! Shark god protects us from storms, floods, heatwaves (sayth Nature & ABC)

Big news: A new endogenous forcing found for climate change — sharks. For millions of years you thought predator-prey relationships were just about big fish having dinner, but not so, they are climate forcings. Sharks cool the planet, and stop storms, floods, droughts and malaria. Crabs, on the other hand, pollute like a coal company. It’s a miracle that the planet made it through the last billion years without the EPA managing the  shark-crab numbers thing. This ABC interview inspired me to channel the spirit of neolithic science.

The dusken-shark doth smite the naughty fishies and give us nice weather

New research has found that sharks play an important role in preventing climate change, warning that overfishing and culling sharks is resulting in more carbon being released from the seafloor.

“Sharks, believe it or not, are helping to prevent climate change,” said Dr Peter Macreadie, an Australian Research Council Fellow from Deakin University and one of the paper’s authors.

Sharks: Good.  Crabs and Turtles: Bad.  Kill those turtles!

“Turtles, crabs, certain types of worms, stingrays — these animals that are overabundant to do with loss of predators used to keep their numbers in check,” [...]

Turnbull is already saying climate policies are “not set in stone”. Beware the emissions trading scheme.

It’s only been a week, and already the door is open to the emissions trading monster.  The Nationals may have got Turnbull to agree in writing last Tuesday that he would not change the Abbott policies, but writing things on paper is not enough, apparently it needs to be carved in stone.

If the member for Goldman Sachs still wants the fake “free” market solution — the one he threw away his leadership for in 2009  — he can keep the current coalition plan but use foreign credits to meet the targets. The global carbon market is the $2 Trillion dollar scheme to enrich financial houses, crooks and bureaucrats. It’s a whole fiat currency, ready-to-corrupt. The vested interests in this are knocking at every door. They’d be mad not too. But what kind of world do we want to live in? We don’t have to reward the do-nothing unproductive sector and the corrupt.

A carbon tax is a pointless waste, and the worst kind of carbon tax is a global trading scheme.

If Australians don’t want to be sold out in Paris, they need to protest now. I suggest writing to The Nationals, Libs, Nick Xenophon and media outlets.

Six [...]

Another carbon credit fraud – $2b. The faked fixed unfree market feeds crooks and makes no difference to emissions.

More news of how the faked fixed unfree market in carbon credits feeds the people who are inclined to cheat, and may have actually increased emissions by 600 million tonnes as well (not that that matters). Around $2 billion dollars may have been wasted, but it’s worse than wasted; the money does not just evaporate. Rewarding cheating takes money from honest players of society and feeds the corrupt sector. Free markets are a powerful tool, but good tools can be used in stupid ways. And so it is with a market trying to sell units of an atmospheric-absence-of-a-gas that no one really wants or has a use for.

The only people calling for a free market in carbon are the people who don’t know what a free market is. Sometimes a free market is just a dumb idea — like when trying to run a global market in a ubiquitous gas molecule that is intrinsic to life on Earth and oceanic chemistry. Worse, we think we might do it in countries with weak law and order, and high rates of corruption. Even sillier than that, we’re trying to sell units that depend on intentions — was that a sincere new [...]

Are dead fish worth more than live person? Could be… Let’s ban fishing too.

Did you know you can change the weather by not eating deep sea fish? Me neither. But apparently fish and other marine life in the high seas contain $148 billion dollars worth of carbon dioxide. (The carbon price used, which includes mitigation costs, is apparently almost $100/tonne — a tad higher than the current EU carbon price of 5 Euro. The “price” was derived from a US govt agency, wouldn’t you know, not the free market.)

The high seas catch is worth a mere $16 billion and is only 1% of all fish caught. But it follows that either hungry people will have to pay a bit more for their fish, or fishermen will switch to take more fish from the low seas. Either that, or hungry people can just eat more rice, right? And it’s not like anyone cares about the protein content of poor people’s diets is it? (Look who made a hyperbolic fuss about a potential 5% reduction in the mineral content of rice by 2050.)

Lets think for a minute about how anyone would make a global oceanic ban work?  Since people only catch deep sea fish for fun, I suppose we  just ask them to [...]

Japan slashes: Forget a 25% cut in CO2 emissions, now the target is a 3% rise!

The UN will not be happy about this. The global movement is falling apart.

Japan, third largest economy in the world, and the land of Kyoto itself, has dumped their ambitious plan to reduce emissions by 25% by 2020. Now they warn that their emissions may rise instead.

Cabinet members said on Friday they had agreed a new target with an updated time frame, under which Japan would seek to cut carbon dioxide emissions by 3.8 per cent by 2020 compared with their level in 2005. Nobuteru Ishihara, the environment minister, is to defend the goal next week when he joins international climate talks in Warsaw.

Japan’s previous target used an earlier and more challenging baseline: 1990, the benchmark year for the Kyoto agreement and a time when Japanese emissions were lower. Compared with that year, Japan said in 2009, it would cut its emissions by one-quarter by 2020.

The new target announced on Friday represents a 3 per cent rise over the same 30-year period – a difference from the previous goal that is about equal to the annual carbon dioxide emissions of Spain.

Read more at the Financial Times

It is being painted as being due to the [...]

The day the Global Warming death spiral began

Let the historic dissection begin. Man-made global warming is a dying market and a zombie science.

The Carbon Capture Report, based in Illinois, tallies up the media stories from the English speaking media on “climate change” daily. Thanks to the tip from Peter Lang, we can see the terminal trend below. The big peak in late 2009 was the double-whammy of Climategate and Copenhagen (aka Hopenhagen). It’s all been downhill since then.

Mentions of “climate change” in news, blogs and tweets dropped suddenly from July 29, 2011

Source: Carbon Capture Report

But something that caught my eye was the drop in mid 2011 (or precisely — July 29, 2011) when media stories fell by half, a step-change fall from which they never recovered.

Media Matters, and Joe Romm make much of of the fact that after Paul Ingrassia (a skeptic) was appointed as Reuters deputy-editor-in-chief news coverage of climate change fell by half.

Media Matters found a 48% decline in climate-change coverage over a six-month period, after Ingrassia joined the agency in 2011.

But Ingrassia started in April 2011 not July. Media Matters compares 6 months before the global fall Oct 2010 – April 2011 — to [...]

Jo Nova in The Australian: Carbon credits market is neither free nor worth anything

Credit to The Australian for printing both points of view. Published as an Op-Ed today.

Carbon credits market is neither free nor worth anything by: Joanne Nova From: The Australian July 31, 2013 12:00AM

THE paradox du jour: people who like free markets don’t want a carbon market, and the people who don’t trust capitalism want emissions trading. So why are socialists fighting for a carbon market? Because this “market” is a bureaucrat’s wet dream.

A free market is the voluntary exchange of goods and services. “Free” means being free to choose to buy or to not buy the product. At the end of a free trade, both parties have something they prefer.

[Those who know what real free markets are know that an emissions trading scheme is not and never can be a free market. The "Carbon-Market" is a market with no commodity, no demand, and no supply. Who needs a "carbon credit"? The government entirely determines both supply and demand.]

A carbon market is a forced market. There is little intrinsic incentive to buy a certificate for a reduction in carbon dioxide emissions. It says a lot about the voluntary value of a [...]

Banks and trading houses bought two-thirds of carbon permits

During the northern winter, there were more speculators in the carbon market than genuine players.

Those bankers must be very concerned about the environment.

Speculators main buyers in EU carbon auctions -report 17 May 2013

LONDON, May 17 (Reuters Point Carbon) – Banks and trading houses bought more than two thirds of the 138 million carbon permits sold by 25 European governments between Nov. 2012 and Feb. 2013 to help power plants and factories comply with the EU Emissions Trading Scheme, an EU Commission report published Friday showed.

Six “credit institutions” and six “investment firms” dominated the 35 auctions held over that period, picking up as much as 80 percent of the allowances sold in January alone, the report said, adding that only one of those companies was eligible to bid on behalf of clients.

http://www.pointcarbon.com/news/1.2378205 paywalled.

Things have changed in the carbon market. From 2005-2012 most allowances were given away free, but now they are being sold at auction. So the period starting Nov 2012 was probably the first sales under the new system. It is expected that the bankers and traders will sell the permits to the power companies in the futures [...]

Amazon River produces monster levels of “pollution”. The dilemma. Should we stop the river?

The mouth of the Amazon is the worst source of “pollution”.

Bad news for fans of The Amazon River. A new study shows that while the Amazon rain forest is the Lungs of The Planet, pulling down gigatonnes of CO2, the river undoes all the good the trees do, and pours all the CO2 back into the sky. Damn that river eh? Lucky it only discharges one fifth of the worlds freshwater.

Apparently most researchers thought bacteria couldn’t digest the tough woody lignin of tree debris fast enough to prevent it getting to the ocean*. Underestimating microbial life seems a common affliction, and we hear was a big surprise that only 5% of the lignin actually ends up reaching the ocean where it might sink to the floor and be sequestered. The rest is broken down by bacteria and released into the air. The clues were there for years that the Amazon was giving off lots more CO2 than people expected, but the consensus was that it “didn’t add up”. So much for that consensus.

Yet another victory for observations over opinions.

Until recently, people believed much of the rain forest’s carbon floated down the Amazon River and ended [...]

Global Carbon Market Hits $176 Billion in 2011

Global Carbon Market trading climbed to $176 billion in 2011 according to the The World Bank, which has just released it’s annual State and Trends of The Carbon Market in 2012. That makes it about the same value as total global wheat production — which supplies about 20% of the calories consumed by the 7 billion people on planet Earth.

The global carbon market disguises itself as an angel against the greedy corporates. Yet it is, itself, a giant corporate playing field. The mainstream media remains largely silent on the “vested interests” represented by this major industry that did not even exist 10 years ago.

Global Carbon Markets are worth billions

Was 2011 the peak of global carbon trading? Looks all downhill from here.

A record number of emissions products were traded in 2011, even though prices of EU carbon permits and international offsets fells well below $10 a tonne late in the year. The prices have fallen, but the volumes have increased. Look out, the average price in 2011 was $18.80US, but the prices in 2012 are  less than half that. It will take a monster increase in volumes in 2012 to keep raising the total market [...]

EU Carbon trading crashes: German bourse closes and Irish end carbon rort

More signs Australia is leaping onto a burning ship as it starts carbon taxing, just as the largest carbon markets are winding up:

(Reuters) – Bavaria’s stock exchange will abandon its carbon emissions certificate trading operations in the EU-traded CO2 market on June 30 after volumes in Europe “plunged to practically zero” in recent months, it said on Tuesday.

The EU’s emissions trading scheme (EU ETS) limits the carbon dioxide emissions of the 27-nation bloc’s factories and power plants and covers nearly half of EU emissions.

EU prices are down 60% over the last 12 months

“Emissions trading will never find its feet again without radical political action,” said Christine Bortenlaenger, the head of the exchange…

[Source: Reuters]

The Borse management claim they were closing because of the fraud and hacking as well as the market downturn:

Skeptics are winning: “the carbon market is dead”

The collapse of the Man-Made Myth continues apace. You may not read headlines as such (at least not in major dailies) but all the signs are there.

People who we never would have imagined speaking against the Big Scare Campaign are now doing so. Key glaciers are not melting and corals are happy. Governments won’t tell you it’s over, but they are behaving that way (the Australian one excepted, due to an election fluke that gave the Greens the balance of power). The Catholic Herald headlined it:  Is the ‘anthropogenic global warming’ consensus on the point of collapse? 

Source Barchart.

The last year of carbon trading in EUR's continues to fall. (Click to enlarge).

Mini update: The carbon market is being referred to as “dead”. Johannes Teyssen, chief executive of Germany’s EON, urged policymakers to make fixes. “Let’s talk real: the ETS is bust, it’s dead,” Mr Teyssen said in Brussels this week, adding: “I don’t know a single person in the world that would invest a dime based on ETS signals.” [full story: Financial Times]. Point Carbon analysts have downgraded the forecast price of carbon credits for the second time in two months as the carbon market [...]

Carbon Price just jumped 30% — It’s not a free market, it’s a fixed charade

A small group of selected rulers just raised a hand, changed the rules, and sent billions of dollars from some people to some others.

This type of arbitrary control over the  carbon market shows why it is a misnomer to call it a “free” market, and why a “market” is the wrong tool to try to use to reduce emissions. CO2 is a universal molecule, found in every walk of life and many inanimate processes. We can’t include them all, and someone somewhere gets to decide which ones count and which ones don’t, and how many of them we are allowed to emit in the first place.

Supply and demand of CO2 emissions are not set by a free market (you know, voluntary and willing participants exchanging things for mutual benefit). The bureaucrats just mandated an illusion of market forces, within a range set by said ‘crats. The price of carbon credits had gotten too painfully low for the rulers and their patrons and fans, so something had to be “done”. They made the carbon caps more stringent. If the price was too high, they would have loosened them (and they admit as much below). This has nothing to do [...]