Delusions Of 'Green' Grandeur

Peter Smith23 Dec, 2023 2 Min Read
16th-century tech as far as the eye can see.

Take the rich well-connected people who fly in and out of COP venues in private gas-guzzling jets. Who live lavishly when there; relishing the finest cuts of the dead carcasses of methane-belching ruminants. Preaching hair-shirted green while living the epicurean dream. How do they square it all away? It’s doublethink on stilts. Split personality, perhaps? Then, to boot, they believe they can control the weather over the next hundred years by simply proclaiming unachievable and irrelevant emission targets. Such delusions of grandeur put in the shade the demented lady who thinks she’s the Queen of Sheba. Insanity, is that the explanation?

In Dubai, Chris Bowen, Australia’s minister for energy and "climate change," proclaimed that fossil fuels have “no ongoing role to play in our [i.e., the world’s] energy systems.” And, he was especially caring about Australia’s islander neighbors in the Pacific.

I speak as the climate and energy minister of one of the world’s largest fossil fuel exporters… We also live in the Pacific, and we are not going to see our brothers and sisters inundated and their countries swallowed by the seas. [Fact check: on the whole Pacific islands are growing in size.]

Meanwhile back at the ranch, his colleague, Jim Chalmers, the Treasurer, was gloating about bringing home yet another budget surplus. Built, substantially, as Bowen intimated, on exports of coal and gas. The two stories clash with a vengeance. At least they do unless you leave reality behind and imagine Australia is going to become, as Bowen reiterated in Dubai, “a renewable-energy superpower.” And there it is. Where doublethink leaves off, delusions of grandeur cut in.

It was hot in Sydney on December 14. Enter Penny Sharpe, the New South Wales' minister for energy and "climate change." There she was on TV, urging people to conserve power. This, in a state sitting on enormous reserves of coal and gas.

We are asking households and businesses to think about what they can defer between 5pm and 9pm tonight… If you can turn your air conditioning up a little bit, over about 24 is fantastic [24°C = 75.2°F], if you can make sure you don't use your dryers and your dishwashers and your pool pumps… that will all help

Ms Sharpe belongs to the same government which has just passed legislation through the state parliament, setting a target by 2030 of reducing net greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50 percent from their level in 2005; and by at least 70 percent by 2035, before plunging magically to net zero by 2050. The very same government which will be forced to bribe Origin Energy to keep its Eraring coal power station going beyond its scheduled close in 2025.

Minds torn asunder; members of the climate cult are so besotted with conquering the weather that they just can’t connect the dots. Specifically, the dots which lead ineluctably from the abandonment of fossil fuels to unreliable and expensive energy. Okay, maybe they’re not clinically insane. But I reckon they could fool a group of psychiatrists into thinking that they are.

After a career in economics, banking and payment-systems management, Peter Smith now blogs on the topics of the day. He writes for Quadrant, Australia’s leading conservative online site and magazine. He has written Bad Economics, of which, he notes, there is much.


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One comment on “Delusions Of 'Green' Grandeur”

  1. Here in Southern California, I do my part to throw a monkey wrench into the green energy scheme by intentionally 1) refusing to sign up for time-of-day rate pricing; 2) running my a/c and appliances at night when renewable generation is unavailable; 3) not using electricity when solar and wind generation is known to be high (electricity energy is expensive to store, thus, if it’s not used it’s wasted). If everyone did this, we could collapse this charade sooner rather than later (its collapse is inevitable, regardless) and avoid much, much higher costs and wasted time and treasure over the long run. This strategy is particularly important during the election season when even the limited attention span of the dim-witted voters won’t prevent them from holding the politicians accountable for the blackouts. As with boycotts in the retail sectors of the economy, principled free-marketers can influence the energy sector by strategically using, or not using, energy at certain times of the day.

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