Jill Duggan: Crashes and burns

March 11th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

This is truly fucking shocking.

Jill Duggan is the EC’s National Expert on Carbon Markets and Climate Change. She was head of Britain’s International Emissions Trading and was in Australia to sell the idea of how good Carbon Trading is. Just remember, Jill is an expert and was the head of the Emissions Trading. No lackey then and should know her arse from her elbow when talking about what thsi type of scheme will, and does, cost and how much benefit it brings.

Jill, here, is talking to radio host Andrew Bolt on the subject…

Andrew Bolt: Can I just ask; your target is to cut Europe’s emissions by 20% by 2020?

Jill Duggan: Yes.

AB: Can you tell me how much—to the nearest billions—is that going to cost Europe do you think?

JD: No, I can’t tell you but I do know that the modelling shows that it’s cheaper to start earlier rather than later, so it’s cheaper to do it now rather than put off action.

AB: Right. You wouldn’t quarrel with Professor Richard Tol—who’s not a climate sceptic—but is professor at the Economic and Social Research Institute in Dublin? He values it at about $250 billion. You wouldn’t quarrel with that?

JD: I probably would actually. I mean, I don’t know. It’s very, very difficult to quantify. You get different changes, don’t you? And one of the things that’s happening in Europe now is that many governments—such as the UK government and the German government—would like the targets to be tougher because they see it as a real stimulus to the economy.

AB: Right. Well you don’t know but you think it isn’t $250 billion.

JD: I think you could get lots of different academics coming up with lots of different figures.

AB: That’s right. You don’t know but that’s the figure that I’ve got in front of me. For that investment. Or for whatever the investment is. What’s your estimation of how much—because the object ultimately of course is to lower the world’s temperatures—what sort of temperature reduction do you imagine from that kind of investment?

JD: Well, what we do know is that to have an evens chance of keeping temperature increases globally to 2°C—so that’s increases—you’ve got to reduce emissions globally by 50% by 2050.

AB: Yes, I accept that, but from the $250 billion—or whatever you think the figure is—what do you think Europe can achieve with this 20% reduction in terms of cutting the world’s temperature? Because that’s, in fact, what’s necessary. What do you think the temperature reduction will be?

JD: Well, obviously, Europe accounts for 14% of global emissions. It’s 500 or 550 million people. On its own it cannot do that. That is absolutely clear.

AB: Have you got a figure in your mind? You don’t know the cost. Do you know the result?

JD: I don’t have a cost figure in my mind. Nor, one thing I do know, obviously, is that Europe acting alone will not solve this problem alone.

AB: So if I put a figure to you—I find it odd that you don’t know the cost and you don’t know the outcome—would you quarrel with this assessment: that by 2100—if you go your way and if you’re successful—the world’s temperatures will fall by 0.05°C? Would you agree with that?

JD: Sorry, can you just pass that by me again? You’re saying that if Europe acts alone?

AB: If just Europe alone—for this massive investment—will lower the world’s temperature with this 20% target (if it sustains that until the end of this century) by 0.05°C. Would you quarrel with that?

JD: Well, I think the climate science would not be that precise. Would it?

AB: Ah, no, actually it is, Jill. You see this is what I’m curious about; that you’re in charge of a massive program to re-jig an economy. You don’t know what it costs. And you don’t know what it’ll achieve.

Now, never mind whether we’re fucking ourselves up the shitter with all this man-made climate change or not, how the cunting-fuck can someone so involved with something as big as this, at such a high level, not know or not be able to give at least afucking clue as to what this is all costing us and what, if any, benefits it brings?

And they wonder why people want the EU, the European Commision and all that bollox to get to fuck.

The extract above is from a post by the Devil, where he has a better explanation of who Jill Duggan is, what she was doing in Australia and links to the full interview, both audio and the transcript.

The Amnesty ad the FT wouldn’t publish

May 18th, 2010 § 2 comments § permalink

What’s with this ad?

Yay for humans!

March 26th, 2010 § 2 comments § permalink

Lets celebrate everything that human race have acheived. The extra-ordinary world that we have created that is so far from the trees and caves from whence we came.

You can do that at 8.30pm 27th March with the Human Achievement Hour.

During Human Achievement Hour, people around the world will be recognising the incredible accomplishments of the human race.

Originally conceived by the Competitive Enterprise Institute in 2009, Human Achievement Hour coincides with the earth hour campaign but salutes those who keep the lights on and produce the energy that makes human achievement possible.

Damn. It coincides with Earth Hour. I’m sure there’s a good reason the exact same hour was chosen. Gotta choose which to do then. Decisions, decisions. They’re both important things, really aren’t they? We got to look after the planet. Whether man made climate change is real or not, we don’t don’t want to mess our home up. You wouldn’t shit on your living room carpet, would you? Would you?

On the other hand, look what humans have acheived. flight, wireless communications, men walking on the moon. We truly are an incredible animal. That surely deserves our support.

I’m gonna go with the Human achievement hour. Let’s celebrate people for a change. We are down on ourselves a lot recently, a big pat on the back would do us good. What have I gotta do to praise the demi-god (and compared to mere animals, we are gods) that is the human?

Millions of people around the world will be showing their support for human achievement by simply going about their daily lives. While earth hour activists will be left in the dark, Human Achievement Hour participants will be going to the cinema, enjoying a hot meal, driving their car or watching television.

What? But I simply ‘go about my daily life’ er, daily. Does that mean that even if I didn’t know about this hour I would still be celebrating it?
Surely then, I celebrate with a human achievement hour 8736 times a year?

This isn’t a celebration. It’s a…

Now, where’s my lentil meusli…?

Naomi Klein on Copenhagen

December 11th, 2009 § 2 comments § permalink

via Liberal Conspiracy

Copenhagn on the blink

December 8th, 2009 § 3 comments § permalink

Well, it’s only day two of the Copenhagen Climate Conference, and already it all seems to be going wrong, a leaked draft treaty that concentrates power in the hands of the rich nations! Could you make this up?

It seems that the world leaders are failing us in a big way, but this is hardly unsurprising. In the last blog, I highlighted the fact that there are too many vested interests that stand to lose large amounts of money, and this is borne out by the attempt to push through a deal that will mean the developing world has to bear the brunt of emission reductions. Of course, this is the only logical thing to do for western big business, as it is obvious that their profits simply cannot exist alongside business practices that treat the climate with respect. Capitalism and the natural environment are simply not compatible.

The question is, where do we go from here? Just yesterday, we heard the conference chairperson, in the opening speach, telling us that this is the last best chance to make an agreement on cutting emissions, yet a day later the only agreement on the table will merely protect the profits of a tiny minority. That the fate of mankind is left in the hands of those who apparently represent us is a farce… We don’t just need disobedience, as Naomi Klein has called for, we need something that will revolutionise the way that we run the world economy…

Cycling for Climate Change

December 4th, 2009 § 0 comments § permalink

Two students, one a great friend of mine,  from the Institute of Social Studies in the Netherlands are cycling from the Hague to Copenhagen, raising awareness of the threat of climate change along the way. To make it more difficult, they are doing it on dutch granny bikes! They are relying on locals putting them up on the way, and are doing it on a shoe-string budget.

Follow them and send the messages of support!!

Their aim is to get to Copenhagen to for the demonstrations at the farce that is to be the latest Climate Change summit.

The UK send off demonstration is Saturday December 5th in London, meeting in Grovesnor Square at 12pm, to encircle Parliament later in the afternoon. We need to urge our governments to do more, but unfortunately it seems as though they are unable to fight the interests of the oil companies and big business.

This is unlikely to happen within the current economic system. The threat of reduced profits means that rich nations are unable to reach an agreement with the developing world on reducing emissions. Markets need to be protected, companies need to remain ‘competitive’, profits rates upheld, and the system needs to grow. And grow, and grow.

However, even the planet has limits – it cannot support limitless growth, but the system is unable to function without it, so we keep heading down the path of environmental destruction full speed ahead. We know how to stop it, but are we strong enough to put on the brakes?


November 10th, 2009 § 0 comments § permalink

In a recent debate at Kings College on the future of capitalism, Martin Wolf, one of the main proponents of global capitalism, and principal economic spokesperson for the City, argued that we can not easily change the nature of global wealth inequality, as people in the developed world would not be prepared to give up what they already have. In a defence of capitalism, and in response to one of the questions from the floor, he challenged the audience as to whether they would all be prepared to give up half of everything they owned for redistribution to poorer countries.


The argument that in order to achieve any kind of large structural change to the economy there must be a trade off against current standards of living is one that is very popular in capitalist circles, and often repeated, yet it hides the real structural factors that prevent any meaningful change. This type of argument is even used by those who see capitalism as merely a least worst system, but who cannot envisage any other way of challenging the status quo than ‘sharing’ the costs.

In the example of global poverty, we  (the general population) are asked to give up our current (modest) living standards to help others. However, this hides the real causes of global inequalities, such as  the production of goods based on profit rather than human need, the resources wasted on illegal and immoral wars and the reification of the financial sector over the productive sector.

Within developed countries like the US and UK, income inequality is already increasing, so the cuts are already happening to some extent:


Although not everywhere:


The cuts that need to be made are not in the living standards of the population and public services (which compromise the social wage), but in the income of the wealthy, the bonuses of the bankers, nuclear weapons and war, and corporate profits. We need production to be realigned to meet human needs, and we need to stop pretending that gambling on stocks and shares contributes anything to society as a whole. We have the greatest productive capacity in the history of mankind, yet we are still unable to feed, clothe and shelter the world. We don’t need cuts in wages, jobs and production to help the capitalists cope with the financial crisis, we need them to accept cuts in their profits and their wages.

The same argument is seen with regards to climate change. We are told that we need to ‘reduce or energy consumption’, or pay higher prices if we don’t in order to cut global emissions.  We need to fly less, drive our cars less, use less power at home.

These mechanisms barely touch the tip of the iceberg, but are an ideological drip to prepare us for the higher prices and ‘trade-offs’ we will be forced to make in the future. Of course, when they say ‘we’ need to fly less , they don’t mean everyone. As fuel prices rise in the future, the poorest will suffer first.

But this trade-off, the acceptance that we must expect lower standards of living if we are to save the environment also hides the real structural factors that need to be tackled. Firstly, we need huge investment in green energy. We have the technology, but this would cut the profits of the current global energy companies, who will only invest in clean alternatives once they have squeezed every ounce of profit out of coal, gas and oil reserves.  As somebody once said, we need to make sure the shit doesn’t get into the pipe, not try and sieve it out once it has got into the water. We need to produce energy clean, not focus on just using less of it.

Secondly, we need cuts in the amount of SUV’s and oil guzzling over sized cars, in the number of cars in city centres, and of  government subsidies for car manufacturing industries. We need investment in public transport systems designed to fulfill the needs of the people, not the profits of the transport companies.  We need cuts in rail and bus fares,  not increases. We need to get rid of intellectual property rights and patents that prevent the spread and sharing of beneficial technology, and to renew commitments to global climate change agreements, and not worry if these cut into the profits of the minority.

We need cuts, but not the sort the City and Government have in mind!

Trafigura, Carter Ruck and a sock stuffed in a mouth

October 13th, 2009 § 0 comments § permalink

The Guardian has had a legal sock stuff in their mouth by those champions of justice Carter-Fuck on behalf of Trafigura

The Guardian has been prevented from reporting parliamentary proceedings on legal grounds which appear to call into question privileges guaranteeing free speech established under the 1688 Bill of Rights.

Today’s published Commons order papers contain a question to be answered by a minister later this week. The Guardian is prevented from identifying the MP who has asked the question, what the question is, which minister might answer it, or where the question is to be found.

The Guardian is also forbidden from telling its readers why the paper is prevented – for the first time in memory – from reporting parliament. Legal obstacles, which cannot be identified, involve proceedings, which cannot be mentioned, on behalf of a client who must remain secret.

The only fact the Guardian can report is that the case involves the London solicitors Carter-Ruck, who specialise in suing the media for clients, who include individuals or global corporations

I am absolutely staggered that a court would give such an order.

Alex Massie in the Spectator reckons he knows what the question is and the gagging order is to try and suppress this report.

This gagging order may not go right to the heart of Parliamentary privilige, which alllows an MP to speak in the house without fear of being prosecution or legal action, but it punctures a lung of an open parliament.

It may be the case that groups and individuals may be barred from being named, granted anonymity, in the reporting of parliament for reasons of national security, but to have that applied purely for commercial reasons is disgusting.

An open, freely reported parliament is essential for a smoothly run and corruption-free (as far as possible) democracy.

Something has gone very, very wrong.

I also found this at Sweeney* Maddison, the judge that approved/passed/whatever-it’s-called the order needs his arse kicking about this, too.

*apologies to Mr Justice Sweeney there.

Greener than walking

September 19th, 2009 § 0 comments § permalink

I was just thinking this morning about how much longer I would have to wait for a reply to this email to Ocado about their claim to be ‘as green as walking to the supermarket’ when early this afternoon a response plops into my inbox…

Dear Sim-O,

Thank you for your e-mail.

The claim that ?Ocado is greener than walking to the supermarket? was a conclusion that was reached by an independent Carbon Footprint Assessment agency called Greenstone and not by Ocado.

The centralised warehouse which every order is picked from means a small supply chain and massive energy/resource efficiency at every level of the business.

Greenstone compared our unique picking model to several well known supermarket chains. These chains emit huge amounts of carbon as they have countless stores around the country, all consuming electricity, using chillers etc. All of these stores have long supply chains from suppliers driving up and down the country. Building new stores generates high amounts of carbon, while Ocado can still grow within one Warehouse.

The most recent comparison in May 2009 of Ocado to ?traditional supermarkets? across the same detailed categories showed that we had a lower carbon footprint. This did not take into account the huge additional carbon footprint of traditional stores from customers traveling to them each week by car.

Hence it was concluded independently that Ocado is greener than walking to a supermarket

For more information on the survey itself, you can contact Greenstone in the following ways:

Greenstone Carbon Management Ltd,
4th Floor,
Vigo House,
1-4 Vigo Street,
London W1S 3HT.

T: +44 (0) 20 3031 4000
F: +44 (0) 20 3031 4001

E: info@greenstonecarbon.com

I hope this has been of assistance.

A customer service bod

Fair enough*. I’m not gonna try and see the survey for myself as, frankly, I can’t be arsed.

*I think I was a little unfair in this tweet as I read it quick and misread it.

people pollute more than vans

September 16th, 2009 § 3 comments § permalink

Ocado, online grocery home delivery service, claim on their vans that they are ‘as green as walking to the supermarket’ and on their website has the statement

With such a lean, efficient operation, we’ve been able to lower our carbon emissions to the point where each Ocado delivery now has a lower carbon footprint (CO2 per £ of sales) than walking to a supermarket.

I’m buggered if I think how driving a van can produce less CO2 than walking, especially as at the moment they are using biodiesel and not something like hydrogen fuel cells which produce only water (not counting all the CO2 produced in the ‘manufacture’ of the hydrogen). I wouldn’t have given it much thought if the claim had been nearly as little as walking, but less…?

So I sent them an email…

To: ocado@ocado.com
from: Sim-O
Subject: your CO2 output

Sri or Madam,

On your vans you claim…

We’re as green as walking to the supermarket

and your website also carries the statement…

With such a lean, efficient operation, we’ve been able to lower our carbon emissions to the point where each Ocado delivery now has a lower carbon footprint (CO2 per £ of sales) than walking to a supermarket.

Could you substantiate that claim, please. It is a big claim and it has to be true otherwise you would not be able to make it, but I am puzzled as to how.

What are you counting as producing CO2 in each type of journey? How far back through the delivery chain are you going? What, exactly, are you comparing for each type of journey?

What are the figures and the maths that enable you to make such a claim?

Kind Regards

I’m not trying make a point, get some info so I can point my finger and yell ‘Cpaitalist Charlatan Pigs!’, but genuinely puzzled. Just by the fact that the van has a driver puts the van on an equal footing with the pedestrian. Doesn’t it?

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