Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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Net Zero is unstoppable – except by common sense


IT’S NOT high interest rates; it’s not inflation; it’s not ever higher taxes; it’s not the housing shortage; it’s not even never-to-be-controlled immigration: it’s the relentless and unstoppable pursuit of Net Zero by 2050.

Net Zero is mandated by legislation introduced in 2008 by the Energy Minister of the time, Ed Miliband, under the premiership of Gordon Brown. It was passed with virtually no debate and by almost all members of both sides of the house. Among other mandated actions are a 78 per cent reduction in the UK’s CO2 emissions by 2035.

Rishi Sunak’s rapturously welcomed extension of the time limit for car manufacturers to cease making petrol and diesel fuelled cars by five whole years from 2030 to 2035, with his eyes firmly fixed on the next general election, is largely meaningless and makes no difference to the target. Manufacturers are still required to make EVs 80 per cent of their output by 2030 or face a £15,000-per-engine fine for falling below the quota. 

A leaked report estimates that the cost of decommissioning Britain’s 178,000-mile gas network could total £74billion, with households picking up the tab.

The General Synod of the Church of England recently passed a motion that commits the Church to spending £190million on Net Zero over the next ten years, with a strong recommendation to add £30million to that figure. Just imagine trying to make Salisbury Cathedral warm with solar panels or heat pumps; or your own parish church for that matter (if you still have one).

In February this year the government told local authorities to crack down on people using wood-burning stoves to keep warm, with fines of up to £300. Ending the sheer delight and comfort of logs crackling and burning, throwing out heat and a delicious smell. This also puts an end to the small businesses that make them. In typical ministerial fashion this edict was issued with no thought about how it would be implemented. Will the police start knocking on doors if they see smoke coming out of a chimney?

Last month the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) urged the Government to commit to a total ban on gas boilers by 2035, declaring that heat pumps are the only way forward. NIC chairman Sir John Armitt also called for cities to ban all vehicles except buses and taxis to cut rush-hour congestion.

Smart meters for electricity and gas are another nasty idea seen by the government as a method for lowering power consumption. The Net Zero scheme aims to have 80 per cent of households on smart meters by 2030 but is lagging far behind the target. Seven million of the smart meters that have been installed will die when 2G and 3G broadband services are discontinued in 2033. Householders clobbered again with the cost of replacing them with new ones.

Claire Coutinho, 38, (previous government role Minister for Children, so well qualified for her new role) is the latest Minister for Energy Security and Net Zero. The fact that we have a minister with this job title shows how far the government has been captured by the global warming fraud. Is the minister aware that many wind turbines currently in use will have reached the end of their lives, 25 years for onshore, 20 years for offshore, before 2035? So, more of them are needed than the government thought. It is also to be hoped that she doesn’t rely too heavily on solar farms. UK typical annualised solar capacity factors are under 15 per cent, so they are virtually useless in the British climate. That is not to mention the once-productive farmland they occupy.

Some people have become completely deranged in their zealotry over manmade global warming. A good example is environmental campaigner and Guardian columnist George Monbiot, who has claimed that farming is the ‘most destructive force ever to have been unleashed by humans’ and should be abolished because meat can be replaced with lab-grown bacteria.

So why is the Net Zero drive unstoppable?

Many eminent climate scientists, geologists and researchers have written learned books and articles and given lectures containing rich empirical data exploding all the myths. For example Professor William Happer, Professor Richard Lindzen, Professor Ian Plimer and TCW‘s weekly columnist Paul Homewood in his meticulously researched posts at Not a Lot of People Know That. There are many, many more individuals and organisations dedicated to exposing the truth. These people and organisations are, without exception, ignored by the believers either because they never see or hear them or, more likely, they are hidden from them by their staff and researchers. Instead the believers pay close attention to such climate experts as Al Gore, Greta Thunberg, King Charles, the Pope and the UN’s scaremonger-in-chief, Antonio Guterres.

Man-made global warming is a belief that has permeated all levels of society, driven by a constant stream of scare stories, so-called record temperature readings, rising sea levels and weather events which, thanks to the internet and smart phones, are always filmed and instantly circulated around the world. This belief is strongly held; it is more powerful than Christianity, as the General Synod has shown, and is promoted by the media for whom scare stories sell and by politicians, world leaders and business leaders all doing that curse of modern life, virtue signalling. Why do they believe it? It is because of one or more of four factors.

1) Ignorance: Very few of our politicians have a grounding in science and anyway, as covid has shown, they will always take the advice of experts because they are too busy to study the subject in any depth and because it enables them to avoid responsibility for any adverse outcomes.

2) Lack of common sense: This seems to be incredibly widespread and is manifested in many ways. The mere fact that occasionally one reads a newspaper article which contains the phrase ‘a triumph of common sense’ shows how rare it is.

3) Stupidity: We have all done stupid things in our lives, but mostly without serious harm for other people. Stupidity can be exhibited by individuals or groups of people. A classic example was the sub-prime mortgage fiasco, but companies big and small collapse because of stupid decisions made by their managers.

4) Greed: As the Russian writer Alexander Pushkin wrote: ‘If there should happen to be a trough there will be pigs.’

So when will this madness stop?

At the moment we are a bit like the frog in the saucepan of warming water: gradually our situation and lifestyles are becoming worse. Electricity prices will rise until we can’t afford to run our heat pumps or charge our electric cars; food will become much more expensive and scarcer as fossil fuel-derived fertilisers start to become unavailable (already happening), and all the fossil fuel-based products, 6,000 of them, disappear. Eventually the public outcry will reach a point where those in power have to pay attention. Hopefully before the frog is boiled to death.

Footnote: In September Professor William Happer gave a lecture tour in Australia. I met him in Sydney: a brilliant man. His 46-minute lecture can be seen here. It’s entertaining and well worth watching.

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David Wright
David Wright
David Wright is a former Royal Navy engineer officer, then an expatriate senior manager in the Far East for many years before running his own business in the UK. He now lives in Australia.

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