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Please scroll down for lots of useful information. There are links to industry and environmental journals, relevant dates in the environmental and renewable energy calendar, current debates, a solar PV Feed-in Tariff calculator, green products websites, campaign groups and more. Some of this might be a bit outdated given time considerations and the fact that I don't get paid for doing this, but I do try and keep it as fresh and new as I can so it's still worth checking out.

Friday, 5 September 2014

Establishment Eco-Crimes

The Establishment’s greatest crime is to bring our planet to the brink of environmental disaster

Earlier this week The Guardian reported that two secret funders of the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), former chancellor Nigel Lawson’s climate-sceptic think-tank, are also linked to the right-wing Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA). Neil Record is founder of a currency management company and an IEA trustee. Industrialist Lord Nigel Vinson is the life Vice-President. According to the Charity Commission, Vinson has given the GWPF £15,000. Record meanwhile refused to comment, stating that it was a private matter.

This isn’t much of a surprise, and in fact lays bare, again, the Establishment’s greatest crime – pushing our planet ever onwards to the brink of planetary disaster.

According to the article by Damien Carrington, the IEA has admitted accepting funding from fossil fuel companies and has also argued against climate change mitigation. It promotes climate change denial and has a history of attacking climate science. It’s stance on climate change is brazenly announced in the article by Robert L. Bradley Climate Alarmism Reconsidered which it featured on its website in 2004, in which Bradley states:

“Government intervention in the name of energy sustainability is the major threat to real energy sustainability and the provision of affordable, reliable energy to growing economies worldwide. Free-market structures and the wealth generated by markets help communities to best adapt to climate change.”

According to ExxonSecrets, the American Friends of the Institute for Economic Affairs has received $50,000 from ExxonMobil since 1998.

So, no surprise to find either that the IEA is in cahoots with other right-wing think tanks and lobby groups when it comes to attacking climate science. In July this year, the IEA featured on its website a short article written by Ryan Bourne who is the Head of Public Policy at the IEA but also the Head of Economic Research at the Centre for Policy Studies (CPS).

The article argued against silencing Lord Lawson stating that he had much to contribute with regard to an economic response to climate change and that we shouldn’t leave climate change to the scientists.

The IEA website has also hosted the arguments of economist Professor Colin Robinson, of the University of Surrey, who, perhaps unsurprisingly, worked for many years in the oil industry. There have been many others appearing on the site taking the same or a similar stance. You can read all about them on Denierlist. Professor Michael Beanstock, for example, has accused climate scientists of misusing statistics, describing the greenhouse effect as an illusion and arguing that climate change is really down to the sun.

Interestingly enough, according to George Monbiot, not once has the BBC challenged the IEA about its claim to be an independent organisation. Given that the media is among those institutions identified by Owen Jones as part of The Establishment, this, to my mind, supports his view that it is basically a racket, not just with regard to preserving privilege from the rich but also with regard to preventing and obstructing real action on climate change.

Additional notes:

Friday, 15 August 2014

How Denmark prioritised wind energy

This article on the Danish wind energy sector is fascinating. The Danes made a success of it with three simple steps: make wind energy a priority, subsidise it so the market can grow and finally help consumers to pay for it.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Global onshore wind heading for install of 53GW per year (RENeweconomy)
Bloomberg New Energy Finance has estimated that the world will add an average of 50-53 gigawatts of new onshore wind energy capacity a year out to 2020.

How far away is grid parity for residential battery storage? (RENeweconomy)
It is now generally recognised that rooftop solar has reached “socket parity” – meaning it is comparable or cheaper than grid prices – in many countries over the last few years. The big question for consumers and utilities is when will socket parity arrive for solar and battery storage?

Citigroup says global solar prospects getting brighter
Leading investment bank Citigroup has painted an incredibly bright future for solar energy across the globe, arguing that its rapid expansion will be driven by “pure economics” and the growing need for diversity.

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Germany set for record wind energy installation

Policy changes are driving record levels of German wind energy installation

You can't trust Graham Lloyd on climate change reporting

According to this piece by Roz Pidcock in RE New Economy (originally sourced from Carbon Brief), an article in The Australian newspaper on deep ocean cooling is misleading because it misses out numerous important aspects of the research upon which it was based (conducted by Carl Wunsch of Harvard University).

The article was written by Graham Lloyd who surmises that:

“The deep oceans have been cooling for the past two decades and [so] it is not possible to say whether changes in ocean heat adequately explain the “pause” in global warming”.

Wunsch has now taken The Australian and Graham Lloyd to task on this saying that Lloyd 'cherrypicked' the research and missed key points. In essence, Wunsch's research finds that although some parts of the ocean are cooling, not all of it is. The cooling signal in fact is very weak, while other parts of the ocean provide strong warming indications. The research is therefore very clear: the ocean, overall, is warming. 

Graham Lloyd is The Australian's Environmental Editor based in Sydney, so you might expect him to know better, however, it is clear that his view on climate change cannot really be trusted because this is not the only article he's written that questions man-made climate change. As you scroll down the list of articles on his bio on The Australian, you come across an article suggesting there are doubts on the climate consensus, and then another one stating that Australia's peak body of earth scientists can't come to a position on climate change.

Lloyd is also highly critical of wind turbines as evidenced by his piece warning of the (non-existent actually) dangers of low-frequency noise from wind turbines. Ketan Joshi, however, takes this nonsense apart fairly effectively.

My opinion is that this piece in Hot Whopper very accurate describes Lloyds, and The Australian's, attitude to environmental issues - spinning Big Fat Lies.

Energy & Environment Dates 2012

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