Sunday, 31 January 2021


 China increases coal production & imports

MenaFM, 24 January 2021

China's raw coal production increased by 0.9 percent year on year in 2020, while its coal imports augmented 1.5 percent, statistics from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) revealed.
A total of 3.84 billion tons of raw coal were manufactured in China last year, reporting a year-on-year expansion of 90 million tons, according to the NBS statistics.
In December alone, the raw coal production increased 3.2 percent from a year ago to 350 million tons, 1.7 percentage points higher than the upsurge seen in November.
4) Meanwhile, India to cut taxes to boost domestic fracking and oil drilling  
Economic Times of India, 27 January 2021

Cess on domestic crude is currently levied at the rate of 20 per cent of the value of oil. Official sources said the proposal by the Union Oil Ministry is to reduce it to 10 per cent

New Delhi: The government may give a 'Make in India' push to oil and gas explorers, as it is considering a proposal to almost halve cess on domestic crude oil to encourage exploration activity and allow Covid-hit oil producers to protect their margins.The glut in the oil market and deep suppression of demand during the peak of pandemic in 2020 had pushed down crude oil prices to unprecedented levels.
Though crude prices have recovered over the vaccination drive against Covid and a pick in demand coupled with unilateral production cut announced by Saudi Arabia, cess puts domestic crude at a disadvantage against imported oil.
Cess on domestic crude is currently levied at the rate of 20 per cent of the value of oil. Official sources said the proposal by the Union Oil Ministry is to reduce it to 10 per cent. If this is accepted by the Finance Ministry, the changes may be announced as part of Budget 2021-22 proposals, sources said....
The government is looking to reduce the tax burden on oil companies to push up domestic production that has stagnated for past several years at around 30-35 million tonne.
Full story

Saturday, 30 January 2021


This article highlights the futility of Biden's policy of sanctions on Russia as well as the nonsense of  the EU on the one hand claiming to be cutting the use of fossil fuels, while at the same time building this new pipeline. As the saying goes ' it's not what they say, but what they do' that counts.

 Defying US sanctions and EU lawmakers, Russian ship lays Nord Stream 2 pipe in Danish Waters

New Europe, 26 January 2021 

Despite US sanctions and a European Parliament resolution, Russian pipe-laying ship Fortuna has started work in Danish waters ahead of the resumption of construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline which would bring Russian gas to Germany under the Baltic Sea.

“The laybarge Fortuna has started works in the construction corridor in the Danish EEZ, ahead of the resumption of the Nord Stream 2 construction. All works are performed in line with relevant permits,” a spokesman for Nord Stream 2 told New Europe on January 25.
He referred to the notice to mariners by the Danish Maritime Authority (DMA). “The authorities announced construction works from January 15 onwards, including preparatory works and tests before pipelay works start,” he said.
MEPs passed a resolution on January 21 calling on the EU to immediately stop the completion of Nord Stream 2. MEPs also underline that the EU should no longer be a welcoming place for Russian wealth of unclear origin,” the European Parliament said in a press release.
With a view to the new administration in Washington, MEPs stressed that the EU should use this momentum to strengthen transatlantic unity in protecting democracy and fundamental values against authoritarian regimes.
The Nord Stream 2 pipeline is already facing US sanctions under its Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA). Washington has said that the Nord Stream 2 would make Europe more dependent on Russian gas, undermining EU energy security. At the same time, however, the US is trying to promote sales of its own liquefied natural gas (LNG).
Full story

Friday, 29 January 2021


 US Republican bill to block Paris climate agreement reignites Senate ratification debate

Valerie Richardson, The Washington Times, 23 January 2021

Rep. Lauren Boebert, Colorado Republican, has introduced a bill to block the Biden administration from reentering the Paris agreement until it receives Senate confirmation, a nod to the longstanding debate over the accord’s legitimacy.
Rep. Lauren Boebert, Colorado Republican, introduced legislation Jan. 21, 2021, to require Senate ratification of the Paris climate agreement. 
Her bill, which has 11 GOP cosponsors, bars Congress from appropriating funds to implement the international climate accord until it receives Senate ratification, a step that former President Obama skipped when he used his executive authority to enter the agreement in 2016.

“My bill prohibits Congress from spending a single penny on the Paris Agreement until this treaty is ratified by the United States Senate,” said Ms. Boebert in a Thursday press release. “Joe Biden took an oath to uphold the U.S. Constitution. If he wants to keep it, he must transmit the job-killing Paris Agreement to the U.S. Senate for ratification.”

The bill has little chance of passing the Democrat-controlled House, but the legislation has drawn attention to the debate over whether the Paris accord is an executive agreement, as the Obama administration maintained, or a treaty that requires the advice and consent of the Senate under the Constitution.

Mr. Biden, citing “a climate in crisis,” signed an executive order Wednesday to rejoin the Paris agreement after former President Trump set into motion the process to exit the accord via his 2017 executive order. The U.S. withdrawal became official on Nov. 4.

“Unilaterally entering the Paris Agreement was wrong in 2016 and it’s wrong now,” Ms. Boebert said. “Responsible energy production supports more than 230,000 Colorado jobs. The Paris Agreement puts these jobs at risk and will increase energy costs. $4 per gallon gasoline, here we go again!”

Ratifying a treaty requires a two-thirds vote of the Senate, which Mr. Biden would be unlikely to secure in the 50-50 Senate. 

Full story

Wednesday, 27 January 2021


 Europe's welcome gift to  Joe Biden: Norway awards oil and gas exploration rights to 30 firms

Reuters, 19 January 2021

OSLO (Reuters) – Norway awarded 61 offshore exploration blocks to 30 oil firms in its latest pre-defined areas (APA) licensing round as it seeks to find more resources close to existing fields, Energy Minister Tina Bru said on Tuesday.

A view of the Johan Sverdrup oilfield in the North Sea, January 7, 2020. Carina Johansen/NTB Scanpix/via REUTERS

Norway, which began to extract oil and gas from its offshore continental shelf 50 years ago, believes it has still only pumped about half of its available resources.
Firms that won stakes in the licences included Equinor, Shell, Aker BP, ConocoPhillips, Total, Lundin Energy and Eni’s Vaar Energi.
“These companies have shown great interest in gaining access to new exploration acreage, illustrating the industry’s confidence in continued profitability from exploration on the Norwegian continental shelf,” Bru said.
“The broad interest shows that companies still believe in the Norwegian continental shelf and in the future profitability of exploration,” said Anniken Hauglie, who heads the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association, an industry group.
Sweden’s Lundin received stakes in 19 licences, followed by Equinor with stakes in 17 licences, while Aker BP and DNO each got 10. ConocoPhillips received stakes in four licences, Total in three and Shell in one….

Norway has also invited oil firms to submit applications by Feb. 23 for 136 exploration blocks in frontier areas in the Barents Sea and the Norwegian Sea.

Last December, the country’s top court dismissed a lawsuit by environmental groups against oil exploration in Arctic waters.

Norway is western Europe’s largest oil and gas producer, with a daily output of around 4 million barrels of oil equivalent.

Full story

Tuesday, 26 January 2021



GWPF & The Guardian, 23 January 2021

As the astronomical cost of Net Zero becomes ever more evident and ordinary Britons begin to realise they can’t afford ‘green houses’ mandated by the Govt, public anger and political backlash are now inevitable.

Buyers of brand-new homes face £20,000 bill to make them greener
Householders buying brand new homes in the next four years are likely to find an unpleasant surprise awaiting them in the future: homes built today will have to be retrofitted with energy efficiency measures and low-carbon technology, at an average cost of more than £20,000.

The extra costs will amount to more than £20bn for the whole of the UK, if the government’s targets of building 300,000 new homes a year are met. Critics say the costs could have been avoided if ministers had agreed to bring in low-carbon standards sooner.

The government this week set out proposals to change building regulations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but declined to bring forward its proposed future homes standard from the scheduled 2025 commencement date, disappointing advocates of greener homes.

Building a new house with high energy efficiency standards and a heat pump instead of a gas boiler costs about £4,800 more than building to current standards. However, building to current standards and then retrofitting the house with the same would cost an average of £26,300, or about £21,500 more than installing the technology in the first place, according to an analysis by the Labour party of data from the Committee on Climate Change (CCC)….

All UK homes will need to be brought up to high standards of efficiency and equipped with low-carbon heating in place of gas boilers if the government is to meet its target of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

Full story

Monday, 25 January 2021


 COP26 in trouble as Boris Johnson's government split over new coal mine.

What a fuss over a mine that produces coking coal used in steel-making. Utter madness!

The Sunday Times, 24 January 2021
Boris Johnson’s climate change tsar is “apopletic” with a cabinet minister for approving Britain’s first new deep coalmine in decades.

Alok Sharma, who quit as business secretary this month to devote himself full-time to the presidency of the COP26 summit, is said to be furious with Robert Jenrick, the communities secretary, for not stopping the mine in Cumbria.

On January 6, Jenrick formally refused to intervene in the £165m Whitehaven project to remove coking coal from beneath the Irish Sea for steel-making. Jenrick, 39, decided not to use his powers to call in the scheme, which would have given him the right to block it, instead telling councillors he was “content” for the decision to be made locally. A government source said Jenrick did not consult Sharma or other ministers on the plan, in line with planning guidance.
Work is likely to begin on the first deep coalmine for 30 years as the government tells other nations to slash carbon emissions. The Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg, 18, said the approval of the mine showed that Britain’s commitment to go carbon neutral by 2050 “basically means nothing”.
The decision could complicate efforts to forge an alliance with Joe Biden’s White House, which has described international action on climate change as a key foreign policy goal.

Friday, 22 January 2021



London, 21 January: The government faces a major embarrassment after the Information Commissioner ordered the Treasury to release an email containing its official estimate of the cost of decarbonising the economy.
In June 2019, some weeks before Parliament adopted the 2050 Net Zero target as law, the then chancellor Philip Hammond wrote to Prime Minister Theresa May, warning that her plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050 was likely to cost the UK more than £1 trillion.

In his letter, the chancellor wrote that the costs meant that less funding would be available for schools, the police and hospitals, pointing out that Net Zero would render some industries “economically uncompetitive.” 
A Freedom of Information (FOI) request for the underlying cost calculations of the estimate was refused by the Treasury, arguing that these were “internal communications.” Remarkably, the cost estimate was contained in the body of a single email.

However, the Information Commissioner has now ruled that the public interest was not given sufficient weight in the Treasury’s decision and has ordered the cost calculation’s release [1].

Welcoming the decision, Andrew Montford, deputy director of the Global Warming Policy Forum said:
“This is a major embarrassment for the Treasury. It appears that it cobbled together a few numbers on the back of an envelop, and simply emailed them off to the Prime Minister without a blush. After Parliament’s decision to adopt the Net Zero target without any meaningful scrutiny, and without consideration of the economic and engineering implications, it is becoming clear that the whole project is misgovernance on a historic scale.”

[1] The Commissioner’s Decision Notice ref IC-46878-R8K0, will be published on the ICO website in due course.
Andrew Montford

Wednesday, 20 January 2021




Here is a thought-provoking article looking at why green policies are likely to cause the next economic crash. 

"If you believe in wind  power then don’t, whatever you do, read ‘The Costs of Offshore Wind Power: Blindness and Insight’.  Written back in September, the report might make you quite unhappy about the current direction and prospects for the Green Economy. The authors describe how costs are escalating, rather than declining as promised. Operating and maintenance costs have risen even faster than they were anticipated to fall! Gas prices will look impossibly cheap compared to renewables if the true facts are ever revealed."

Thursday, 14 January 2021



GWPF & Power Engineering International, 13 January 2021

Of Africa’s 2500 planned power-generation projects, half are coal and gas power plants, Oxford University study reveals


 Africa’s current and predicted 2030 electricity capacity mix by fuel type. “Fossil fuels will continue to dominate generation capacity, accounting for 62% of the total and half of all newly commissioned capacity.” Source: Alova et al. 2020
Fossil fuels to dominate Africa’s energy mix this decade – report

A new study into Africa’s energy generation landscape uses a state-of-the-art machine-learning technique to analyse the pipeline of more than 2,500 planned power plants and their chances of successful commission.

The study shows the share of non-hydro renewables in African electricity generation is likely to remain below 10% in 2030, although this varies by region.

The research, published in Nature Energy, from the University of Oxford predicts that total electricity generation across the African continent will double by 2030, with fossil fuels continuing to dominate the energy mix – posing potential risk to global climate change commitments.  

“Africa’s electricity demand is set to increase significantly as the continent strives to industrialise and improve the wellbeing of its people, which offers an opportunity to power this economic development through renewables,” says Galina Alova, study lead author and researcher at the Oxford Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment.

Aloya adds: “There is a prominent narrative in the energy planning community that the continent will be able to take advantage of its vast renewable energy resources and rapidly decreasing clean technology prices to leapfrog to renewables by 2030 – but our analysis shows that overall it is not currently positioned to do so.”

The study predicts that in 2030, fossil fuels will account for two-thirds of all generated electricity across Africa. While an additional 18% of generation is set to come from hydro-energy projects.

Full story

Wednesday, 13 January 2021


 Peter Foster: Sustainable Newspeak by 2050

Financial Post, 5 January 2021

As Orwell noted, the language of fear and panic is one of the main instruments of political control. 

George Orwell pointed out that one of the first casualties of socialism is language. The damage is not collateral, it is deliberate — designed to numb minds and render critical thought difficult or impossible. The instrument of this dumbing down in Nineteen Eighty-Four was Newspeak, the official language of the English Socialist Party (Ingsoc).
Newspeak was a sort of Totalitarian Esperanto that sought gradually to diminish the range of what was thinkable by eliminating, contracting and manufacturing words. New words had a “political implication” and “were intended to impose a desirable mental attitude upon the person using them.” The meaning of words was often reversed, as was most starkly emphasized in the key slogans of Ingsoc:
War is peace.
Freedom is slavery.
Ignorance is strength.
Nineteen Eighty-Four was written in 1949. Its nightmarish fictional world is now 37 years in the past, so one might reasonably conclude that Orwell was far too pessimistic, but his great book was less a prediction than a warning, and above all an analysis of the totalitarian mentality.
Meanwhile, there is another significant date in Nineteen Eighty-Four. The book’s appendix on “The Principles of Newspeak” stressed that the corruption of language was a multi-generational project whose fruition would not come until well into the present century. Ingsoc’s objective was to render independent thought impossible by “about 2050.”

Intriguingly, that is the same year that the world allegedly has to become “carbon neutral,” or “net zero,” to avoid climate Armageddon.
Weasel Words
The year 2050 has become a key date for the UN’s “Global Governance” agenda, which seeks nothing less than to oversee and regulate every aspect of life on the basis of a suite of alarmist projections. The main existential threat is claimed to be catastrophic man-made climate change.
“Climate Governance” has thus emerged as the “fourth pillar” of the UN’s mandate, joining Peace and Security, Development, and Human Rights.
So far — as with the other three pillars — the UN’s climate efforts have been spectacularly unsuccessful. It has held 25 enormous “Conferences of the Parties,” or COPs, which have promoted a morass of uncoordinated national policies that have had zero impact on the climate.
COP 21 in Paris in 2015, for instance, was meant to hatch a successor to the failed Kyoto Protocol. But all it produced was a raft of hypocritical, voluntary, fingers-crossed “Nationally Determined Contributions.” The failure of Paris, and of temperatures to rise in line with flawed models, led to a doubling down of “ambitions.” One new commitment that seeped out of Paris was for the countries of the world to hold temperatures to 1.5 degrees Celsius above levels before the Industrial Revolution (the original climate sin). Staying below that level, UN policy wonks rapidly calculated, would require the world to become carbon neutral, or net-zero, by 2050.

In a video lecture to Chinese students last year, UN Secretary-General António Guterres claimed that there was “no excuse” not to meet the net-zero emission target by 2050. “The time for small steps has passed,” he said. “What is needed now is transformational change.” For “transformational” read “revolutionary” — change that would involve the destruction of Western industrial society and freedom.
In fact, there is no climate “crisis” or “emergency.” However, as Orwell noted, the language of fear and panic is one of the main instruments of political control.
Today, just as in Nineteen Eighty-Four, the classical liberal concepts of liberty and equality (of opportunity) are under relentless attack, as are the values of reason and objectivity. Liberty and equality were classified in Newspeak as “Crimethink.” Objectivity and rationalism were “Oldthink.” A doomed Newspeak lexicographer named Syme tells the book’s equally doomed hero, Winston Smith, that even the party slogans will eventually become incomprehensible: “How could you have a slogan like ‘freedom is slavery’ when the concept of freedom has been abolished?”
Orwell was hardly the first observer to point to the political dangers of linguistic manipulation, which go back to discussions of sophistry in Plato. The great economist and philosopher Friedrich Hayek pointed in particular to the left’s use of “social.” He dubbed it a “weasel word” that not merely sucked meaning from words to which it was attached but often reversed meaning. Thus, by classical liberal standards, social democracy is undemocratic, social justice is unjust, and a social market economy is anti-market. We have a prime current example in the phrase “social licence to operate,” which in fact means a potential veto on corporate activities by radical environmental non-governmental organizations (ENGOs), the stormtroopers of the Global Governance agenda.
Private corporations were once socialism’s enemies; now they have been co-opted as its partners, agents of “Global Salvationism.” Nobel economist Milton Friedman pointed to the subversive, open-ended nature of “Corporate Social Responsibility,” where “responsibility” represents another weasel word. CSR’s purpose is to force corporate executives to abandon their responsibility to their shareholders in favour of an endless list of “stakeholder” demands.

Friedman has been regularly and ritually subjected to the Two Minutes Hate ever since. The most recent example was a collection of overwhelmingly condemnatory essays in the New York Times to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the publication of his essay on CSR. Typically, it grossly misrepresented Friedman and wrote off his alleged bottom line as “Greed is Good.”
The shackles of CSR have now been tightened by the concept of ESG (Environmental, Social, and corporate Governance). ESG is, like the neologisms of Newspeak, “intended to impose a desirable mental attitude” on executives, who often seem intellectually and morally defenceless in the face of NGO campaigns of lies and intimidation. Business schools certainly don’t appear to equip them to counter such assaults.
A Climate of Newspeak
Perhaps the most significant new weasel word to have emerged from the UN’s equivalent of the Ministry of Truth is “sustainable.” Commitment to sustainability is now mouthed by every politician, bureaucrat, marketing executive and media hack on Earth. It sounds so benign, so reasonable, but what it actually means is “bureaucratically controlled and NGO-enforced within a UN-based socialist agenda.” Like most aspects of socialism, it is based on incomprehension and/or hatred of the nature and function of market capitalism, not least because markets — which signal scarcity, reward economy and promote profitable innovation — are the only true source of sustainability.
Projected catastrophic man-made climate change was enthusiastically embraced by global socialism because it was — in the words of Nicholas Stern, who was ennobled for his manufacture of an egregiously skewed review of climate impacts for his political masters in the U.K. Labour Party — “the greatest market failure the world has ever seen.” The problem is that we haven’t actually seen it, except, that is, through the biased lens of “official” science and an alarmist crusading media.

Like “social,” “sustainable” tends to vitiate or reverse the meaning of words to which it is attached. Thus sustainable development is development retarded by top-down control, and whose effectiveness is further compromised by the insertion of a long list of cart-before-the-horse social policy objectives, from gender equity to “responsible consumption.”
Full essay

Peter Foster is a Toronto-based journalist and the author of 10 books. A collection of his National Post columns, titled How Dare You!, was recently published by the Global Warming Policy Forum.  It can be purchased in hard copy or ebook from Amazon: UK – USA – Canada – Australia

Tuesday, 12 January 2021


According to Deutsche Bank: EU Green Deal can only succeed with “a certain degree of eco-dictatorship”

GWPF & Deutsche Bank Research, 10 January 2021

A senior economist at Deutsche Bank warns that for the EU’s Green Deal to succeed, “a certain degree of eco-dictatorship will be necessary”

An analysis published by Deutsche Bank sharply criticises the “dishonest debate” with which the EU is selling its “Green Deal” to the people of Europe. The massive risks of the project for prosperity, the economic system and democracy itself should not be concealed, but should be addressed openly.

Eric Heymann, a senior economist at Deutsche Bank Research, warns that Europe’s Green Deal and its goal of climate neutrality by 2050 threatens a European mega-crisis, leading to “noticeable loss of welfare and jobs”. And he warns: It won’t work without “a certain degree of eco-dictatorship”.
The analyst describes it as dubious that the Green Deal is being touted across the board as “a new growth strategy” which would allow the EU to become a “fair and prosperous society.” While this may look good on paper, Heymann writes, in order to achieve carbon neutral by 2050, Europe’s economy and its entire political and legal systems will have to be changed fundamentally.
For the time being, the revolutionary consequences of the EU’s climate agenda for everyday life are “still relatively abstract” and for most households “still acceptable.” Soon, however, the path towards climate neutrality will require drastic interventions in the choice of means of transport, the size of housing, the means of heating, the possession of electronic consumer goods, as well as restrictions in the consumption of meat and tropical fruits.
And he warns these restrictions and infringements will inevitably trigger “massive political resistance.”
"Some parties will find arguments against strict climate protection policies if the latter lead to a significant increase in energy prices or to restrictions of personal freedom or ownership rights. And let us not fool ourselves: these parties will find voter support. At the EU level, there will be major conflicts about distribution, which may contribute to (further) divisions within the bloc. Are we ready to deal with this polarisation?"
( where are these parties in the UK, I hear you ask)
Below are excerpts of Eric Heymann’s analysis.

Climate neutrality: Are we ready for an honest discussion?

A certain degree of eco-dictatorship will be necessary
The impact of the current climate policy on people’s everyday lives is still quite abstract and acceptable for many households. Climate policy comes in the form of higher taxes and fees on energy, which make heating and mobility more expensive. Some countries have set minimum energy efficiency standards for buildings or similar rules in other areas. However, climate policy does not determine our lives. We take key consumption decisions, for example whether we travel at all, how much we travel and which means of transport we use, whether we live in a large house or a small apartment and how we heat our homes, how many electronic devices we have and how intensely we use them or how much meat and exotic fruit we eat. These decisions tend to be made on the basis of our income, not on climate considerations.

If we really want to achieve climate neutrality, we need to change our behaviour in all these areas of life. This is simply because there are no adequate cost-effective technologies yet to allow us to maintain our living standards in a carbon-neutral way. That means that carbon prices will have to rise considerably in order to nudge people to change their behaviour. Another (or perhaps supplementary) option is to tighten regulatory law considerably. I know that “ecodictatorship” is a nasty word. But we may have to ask ourselves the question whether and to what extent we may be willing to accept some kind of eco-dictatorship (in the form of regulatory law) in order to move towards climate neutrality. Here is an example: What should we do if property owners do not want to turn their houses into zero-emission buildings; if they do not have the financial means to do so; if doing so is not possible for technical reasons or if the related investments do not pay off?

Loss of competitiveness or restrictions to free trade
If the EU moves considerably more quickly towards climate neutrality than the rest of the world, carbon prices in the EU will rise more rapidly, too. This will reduce the competitiveness of energy-intensive companies in the EU. Are we willing to pay that price? Probably not – remember, nobody is to be left behind. So will we subsidise these companies to enable them to use expensive, but climate-friendly technology? This option will be difficult to implement in the long run due to budget constraints. An honest discussion will have to deal with the truth that each euro spent on climate protection is no longer available for expenses on education, research, public health, digital infrastructure, domestic and external security, tax cuts or higher pensions. The EU commission plans to introduce a carbon border adjustment system to address the competition problem. Do we really believe that doing so will not make the affected countries introduce countermeasures? Are we really willing to give up the advantages of free trade in favour of climate protection?

Massive political resistance ahead
Nobody is to be left behind on the path towards climate neutrality. This statement from the Green Deal probably amounts to trying to square the circle. A major turnaround in climate policy will certainly produce losers among both households and corporates. In addition, prosperity and employment are likely to suffer considerably. If this was not the case, climate protection would be an easy undertaking. These developments will obviously have an impact on the political landscape, both at the national and EU level.

Some parties will find arguments against strict climate protection policies if the latter lead to a significant increase in energy prices or to restrictions of personal freedom or ownership rights. And let us not fool ourselves: these parties will find voter support. At the EU level, there will be major conflicts about distribution, which may contribute to (further) divisions within the bloc. Are we ready to deal with this polarisation? Or will we adjust our climate policy ambitions if we find that (overly) ambitious climate policies are not acceptable to a majority of the people?

The full analysis is available at  Deutsche Bank Research  (pp. 70-73)