Thursday, October 15, 2009

They know that they don't know

If cap and trade is meant to solve our climate crisis, why does the bill include funding to understand climate change?

Section 451 of the Waxman-Markey cap and trade legislation includes funding to research the effects of “human-induced or natural changes in the global environment (including alterations in climate, land productivity, oceans or other water resources, atmospheric chemistry, biodiversity, and ecological systems) that may alter the capacity of the Earth to sustain life.” The government will pay for five-year reports on scientific knowledge regarding climate change and how various resource capacities are affected by it (Sec. 451).

The bill also establishes a National Climate Service to “advance understanding of climate variability and change at the global, national, regional and local levels,” among other climate change-related functions (Sec. 452, b1). Provisions for a report that will identify “specific needs for new climate products to be delivered by each Federal agency and its partner organizations,” as well as “potential user groups and stakeholders that may be served by expanding climate products and services” (Sec. 452, d2B(iii-iv)). It also creates a “Natural Resource Climate Change Adaptation Panel,” composed of the heads of various related government agencies, to serve as a forum for interagency consultation on the national resource climate change adaptation strategy.

A few things are certain. The verdict on climate change is quite uncertain. A recent BBC News article notes that “for the last 11 years we have not observed any increase in global temperatures.” The long-term trend of increasing temperatures is something to study, as is climate change in its entirety. If climate change is going to cause dramatic sea level rises or a new ice age, whether it’s human-induced or not, a changing climate could be a major problem. But it’s not right now and there’s no near-term imminent danger that would justify an expensive response, which most Americans seem to understand according to recent polling.

Indeed, it seems that they are seeing right through the façade of global warming alarmism. The American public requires more than overplayed claims by Vice President Gore that global warming not only caused Hurricane Katrina but that Katrina was itself evidence that we were entering a new era of deadly hurricanes. Despite these assertions, the hurricane seasons in 2006-09 have, by most measures, been quite normal. As Heritage energy and environment expert Ben Lieberman often states, everything that you hear about global warming that sounds terrifying is not true, and what is true is not particularly terrifying. The public gets this, which is why global warming ranks low as a priority of issues for Congress to address.

Studying the climate is worthwhile and Waxman-Markey would be an acceptable bill if it solely included these provisions for the world to better understand climate change. But pairing it with a costly cap and trade system, along with countless other problematic provisions, as the world recognizes that the scientific debate over global warming is far from over is not the solution to the nation’s dwindling climate concerns.


Apparently a Less-Warm Planet Requires Loads of Pork, Red Tape, and Union Favoritism

An Associated Press story last week related "good news" about expected heating costs this winter: namely, it will cost people less to heat their homes this year, according to the Energy Information Administration. To read the story, one would think that the government considers that to be good news, too.

Under a cap-and-trade regime, however, this same news would be considered calamitous. By the government, that is – consumers would, of course, remain consistent in their opinion that higher energy costs are bad news and lower costs, good. Making energy more expensive is what the whole cap-and-trade scheme depends on.

The House legislation known as cap-and-trade, HR 2454 (Waxman-Markey), is intended to limit (cap) greenhouse-gas emissions in the United States, including especially carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, starting in 2012. The cap would be set initially at a level 3 percent lower than U.S. emissions in 2005 and would tighten by 2050 to be at 83 percent lower than 2005 emissions.

It is important to understand that emissions are a byproduct of energy production, especially from fossil fuels, and 85 percent of U.S. energy is from fossil fuels. The cap would begin by restricting energy production until it is forced into so-called "green" energy alternatives (which never include emissions-free but maddeningly efficient nuclear power) — alternatives that are far too inefficient to work without government forcing people onto them.

By effectively limiting energy production and forcing new production to come from new, highly inefficient sources, the legislation would greatly increase the cost of electricity on everyone: the working poor, families struggling on the cusp of poverty, college students, elderly on fixed incomes, small businesses, everybody.

Think of every subgroup of people that has ever been held forth by the Democrats for universal sympathy as a substitute for an argument in favor of some piece of legislation. Think of every time the Democrats have ever said we must pass such-and-such bill because it would help this group of people and hey, the only conceivable reason someone wouldn't support this bill is if he hates those people. Well, of all those groups, every last one of them would be harmed by cap-and-trade. On purpose.

The ripple effects — the trickle-up misery — of the government deliberately raising the cost of energy in this country is hard to imagine even during a steep recession. According to Heritage Foundation research, it would reduce aggregate GDP by $9.4 trillion by 2035, kill about 1.15 million jobs per year, cause a 90-percent spike in electricity rates (adjusted for inflation), add to the federal debt nearly $30,000 per person (adjusted for inflation), and cause the average family's annual energy bill to jump by over $1,200 (inflation-adjusted).

The Heritage Foundation might even be sunshine optimists in their estimation. A Freedom of Information Act request by Christopher C. Horner at the Competitive Enterprise Institute resulted (eventually) in the public knowledge that the U.S. Treasury Dept. has estimated the total in new taxes under cap-and-trade would be between $100- to $200-billion per year, meaning the cost per American household would be over $1,700 per year.

Still, it's never enough to favor or oppose legislation based on looking at one side of the ledger sheet. Who would benefit under a cap-and-trade scheme as envisioned in Waxman-Markey?

One group that has already benefited has been swing-vote congressmen and their friends. The week that it passed the House, $130,000's worth of PAC donations were made to 41 swing Democrats, and where campaign donations weren't enough to do the trick, pork-barrel politicking was (a New York Times headline put it this way: "With Something for Everyone, Climate Bill Passed").

If the bill were to become law, then benefactors would also include the ever-growing list of favored businesses that would be granted free carbon allowances. Along with the arbitrary caps the government would place on emissions would be emissions permits, or allowances, that the government would institute. Allowances signify how much carbon a business could legally emit. With emissions capped, there would be only so many allowances available, and they would be valuable commodities that "cleaner and greener" businesses could sell to "still-polluting" firms (this is the "trade" portion of cap-and-trade). How to distribute those allowances initially would be very important; the Obama administration wants them auctioned off, whereas the House leadership found it necessary for the bill's passage to promise giveaways of allowances to firms in key representatives' districts.

The market for those allowances would be staggering; by some estimates, in five years it would become the largest commodities market in the world. Even White House budget director Peter Orszag said the prospect of giving firm the allowances for free "would represent the largest corporate welfare program that has ever been enacted in the history of the United States."

It follows, then, that other benefactors would be those involved in the newly created "carbon market" — energy companies, commodities brokers, government bureaucrats, and speculators. The bureaucrats would gain also from the many new government jobs needed for information gathering, a National Greenhouse Gas Registry, and the like. Corporate compliance officers would also find their services in more demand to help firms manage the even thornier red-tape jungle.

Domestic firms would benefit from embedded protectionist measures ostensibly to prevent "leakage," by which is meant imports produced by foreign firms untouched by emissions strictures or international firms moving jobs out of the U.S. in order to avoid them. The bill recognizes that it would impose such a massive cost on production that it would, if outside competitors didn't also have to bear it, cripple U.S. industry, so the answer is to institute an "Emission Allowance Rebate Program" for domestic firms and allow the president to require importers to show proof of carbon offsets or emissions allowances (which would amount to a tariff).

Carbon offsets, by the way, would be another way that firms who emit more than their "fair share" could legally continue to do so — they would have to purchase carbon offsets from landscapers and tree planters (everyone knows shrubs and trees scrub the environment of carbon pollution). Forestry interests would thereby be other significant benefactors of Waxman-Markey.

Labor unions would benefit from the bill's requirements of contractors and subcontractors to be subject to the Davis-Bacon Act of 1931, especially the "prevailing wage" portion that so effectively prices out small and minority-owned businesses. And anyone with a project that can wrangle it a designation as a "Green Construction Careers Demonstration Project" would rest assured in the knowledge that the government would see to it the project would not fail. There is also a highly specific list of "targeted workers" for green construction projects who would also benefit, a few examples of which include child welfare recipients, residents in a community empowerment zone, residents in an area in which at least one-fifth of households during the past two years never exceeded 200 percent of the federal poverty guidelines, and displaced homemakers.

Finally, certain industries would benefit as well, including such pre-Industrial Revolution powerhouses as leather and allied goods, bags, paper, all kinds of publishing (newspapers, periodicals, books), and cutlery and hand tools.

Benefits to the planet itself — remember the ostensible reason for such a gargantuan program that only incidentally would raise over $1,700 in new taxes per American household? — are entirely theoretical. Apparently some estimates are that by 2050 the planet would be some very small fraction of a degree Celsius cooler-than-projected-warming (which means still warmer, but by a smidge less). Meanwhile, other, poorer nations will continue to chase after energy generation because it is so important to growing economies, lifting living standards, and in general improving life and the enjoyment thereof. China's rate of growth in its energy production is such that within another two decades its emissions level would equal that of the entire world's right now.

Again, weighing the full costs and benefits of proposed legislation is what responsible citizens do. Cap-and-trade's costs may be significant, but don't forget its benefits include increasing government corruption, growing bureaucracy, promoting pork-barrel politics, exploiting the poor, and empowering labor unions. Add to that freedom from the fear that winter heating costs might fall again as they did in 2009-10, and the true worth of the idea should become evident to all.


Apple, Nike and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Putting green politics above the interests of shareholders

The recent corporate resignations from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce have played in the media as a case of enlightened corporate stewardship vs. blinkered old businesses. But there's far more to this story—not least the way that Apple and Nike are putting green political correctness above the long-term interests of their own shareholders.

The Chamber needs "a more progressive stance on this issue" of climate change, declared Apple Vice President Catherine Novelli in a letter of resignation from the business lobby on October 5. Added Nike, announcing its resignation on September 30 from the Chamber board though retaining its membership: "US businesses must advocate for aggressive climate change." Both decisions were ostentatiously leaked to the media.

The first point to understand is the role of Al Gore, who is a member of the Apple board and perhaps the leading supporter of President Obama's cap-and-tax anticarbon legislation. Mr. Gore has also invested in renewable energy technologies that could make him even richer than he already is if new climate rules make renewables more competitive with carbon energy.

Meanwhile, Apple's Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook happens to sit on the board of . . . Nike. We're told that Nike CEO Mike Parker didn't discuss the Chamber move with his full board of directors before it was announced, and Nike didn't return our phone call asking for comment. In any case, we doubt it's an accident that Nike and Apple acted against the Chamber at the same time—and just when Democrats are trying to build new momentum for cap and trade in the Senate.

Both companies may figure they can afford a U.S. carbon tax because most of their manufacturing is done outside the U.S. Apple has an enormous "carbon footprint" of some 10 million annual tons of emissions to make and use its power-hungry gadgets. But nearly all of those products are made in China and other Asian countries where there are no carbon limits and aren't likely to be any time soon, if ever. According to calculations based on Apple's emissions figures, were the company to manufacture in the U.S., the Boxer-Kerry bill pending in the Senate would hit Apple with carbon taxes between $43 million and $108 million a year.

Nike, meanwhile, makes most of its shoes and apparel in 700 contract factories in countries such as South Korea and Vietnam—which also won't sign up for the Boxer-Kerry energy tax. The larger point is that neither Apple nor Nike would pay as much under a cap-and-trade bill as, say, the maker of Bobcat excavators in Bismarck, N.D., or your average Midwest natural gas utility. Green virtue is easier when someone else is paying for it.

Yet even this self-interested calculation is likely to be short-sighted for both companies. Since climate change is a global issue, green activists won't stop their carbon pursuit at the U.S. border. It wouldn't be long after cap and trade passed in the U.S. that Nike and Apple were pressured to move their manufacturing out of countries that haven't signed Kyoto II. That would threaten their production lines and cost structure, with potential damage to sales and competitiveness.

And if the companies fail to relocate, the next anticarbon lobbying policy step will be a carbon tariff against products made in China or Vietnam and sold in the U.S. A carbon tariff is already part of the House cap-and-trade bill and is gaining currency among Congressional protectionists, most recently Senator Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.). As companies that import nearly all of their products, Apple and Nike would be especially vulnerable. We wonder if Messrs. Cook and Parker thought through any of this before committing their employees and investors to this crusade.

The Chamber's great sin, according to Nike and Apple, is that it questioned the Environmental Protection Agency's right to regulate all greenhouse gases without new legislation. The Chamber has said that while it supports Congressional efforts to regulate emissions, it opposes EPA's attempt to grab that power for itself on the basis of an elastic reading of the Clean Air Act. This is a major issue for many Chamber members.

If companies are going to dump the Chamber over a single dispute, then the overall influence of business in Washington is likely to decline. The Chamber's job isn't to favor one company's agenda over another but to stand broadly for free trade, low taxes and limited regulation—principles that help U.S. business as a whole.

Having abandoned their business allies on climate change, Apple and Nike might wake up one day to discover they need those friends on one of their crucial issues. It will serve them right if they find themselves alone in the Beltway square.


Whatever happened to global warming? How freezing temperatures are starting to shatter climate change theory

Article below from Britain's mainstream "Daily Mail"

In the freezing foothills of Montana, a distinctly bitter blast of revolution hangs in the air. And while the residents of the icy city of Missoula can stave off the -10C chill with thermals and fires, there may be no easy remedy for the wintry snap's repercussions. The temperature has shattered a 36-year record. Further into the heartlands of America, the city of Billings registered -12C on Sunday, breaking the 1959 barrier of -5C.

Closer to home, Austria is today seeing its earliest snowfall in history with 30 to 40 centimetres already predicted in the mountains.

Such dramatic falls in temperatures provide superficial evidence for those who doubt that the world is threatened by climate change. But most pertinent of all, of course, are the growing volume of statistics. According to the National Climatic Data Centre, Earth's hottest recorded year was 1998. If you put the same question to NASA, scientists will say it was 1934, followed by 1998. The next three runner-ups are 1921, 2006 and 1931.

Which all blows a rather large hole in the argument that the earth is hurtling towards an inescapable heat death prompted by man's abuse of the environment. Indeed, some experts believe we should forget global warming and turn our attention to an entirely differently phenomenon - global cooling.

The evidence for both remains inconclusive, which is unlikely to help the legions of world leaders meeting in Copenhagen in December to negotiate a new climate change deal.

There is no doubt the amount of man-made carbon dioxide, the gas believed to be responsible for heating up the planet, has increased phenomenally over the last 100 years.

For the final few decades of the 20th century and as the atmosphere's composition changed, scientists recorded the planet was warming rapidly and made a positive correlation between the two. But then something went wrong. Rather then continuing to soar, the Earth's temperature appeared to stabilise, smashing all conventional predictions. The development seemed to support the view of climate change cynics who claimed global warming was simply a natural cycle and not caused by man.

Some doubters believe that the increase was actually down to the amount of energy from the Sun, which provides 98 per cent of the Earth's warmth.

Previously, the fluctuating amount of radiation given out by the sun was thought to play a large role in the climate. But Dr Piers Forster from Leeds University, who was part of the team to win the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize for his work on climate change, studied solar output - the heat leaving the sun's surface - and cosmic ray intensity over the last 40 years, and compared those figures with global average surface temperature. He told the BBC: 'Warming in the last 20 to 40 years can't have been caused by solar activity.'

Scientists have intensified the search for alternative explanations. Professor Don Easterbrook from Western Washington University believes the key to the connumdrum may be the temperature of the world's seas. Figures show the Pacific Ocean has been cooling over the last few years, and Easterbrook's research shows a correlation between this and global temperatures. He says the oceans have a cycle in which they warm and cool cyclically, known as Pacific decadal oscillation (PDO). And after a 30-year heating cycle in the 1980s and 1990s, pushing temperatures above average, we are now moving into a cooler period.

Professor Easterbrook said: 'In the last few years [the Pacific Ocean] has been losing its warmth and has recently started to cool down. 'The PDO cool mode has replaced the warm mode in the Pacific Ocean, virtually assuring us of about 30 years of global cooling.' His figures show that the global cooling from 1945 to 1977 coincided with one of these cold Pacific cycles.

Mojib Latif, a member of the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change), stressed the impact of the ocean currents in the North Atlantic - a phenomenon called the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and the Atlantic Meridional Oscillation. He believes we may be in a period of cooling - but that it will be temporary before global warming reasserts itself. He said the NAO may have been responsible for some of the rapid rise in temperatures of the last three decades. 'But how much? The jury is still out,' he said.

So is the sun really going down on global warming? The Met Office is not convinced. They incorporate solar and oceanic cycles into their models, and they say that - even if there are periods of slower warming, or temporary cooling, the long-term trend in global temperatures is still on the up.


Rainforests and the creatures in them FLOURISHED during prehistoric global warming

Fossil boffins say that dense triple-canopy rainforests, home among other things to gigantic one-tonne boa constrictors, flourished millions of years ago in temperatures 3-5°C warmer than those seen today - as hot as some of the more dire global-warming projections.

The new fossil evidence comes from the Cerrejón coal mine in Colombia, previously the location where the remains of the gigantic 40-foot Titanoboa cerrejonensis were discovered. The snake's discoverers attracted flak from global-warming worriers at the time for saying that the cold-blooded creature would only have been able to survive in jungles a good bit hotter than Colombia's now are.

But now, according to further diggings, there is more evidence to support the idea that a proper rainforest similar to those now seen in the tropics existed at the time of the Titanoboa - despite the much hotter temperatures. This could be seen as conflicting with the idea that a rise of more than two or three degrees would kill off today's jungles with devastating consequences for the global ecosystem of which we are all part.

"Rainforests, with their palms and spectacular flowering-plant diversity, seem to have come into existence in the Paleocene epoch, shortly after the extinction of the dinosaurs 65 million years ago," says Carlos Jaramillo of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute. "Forests before the mass extinction were quite different from our fossil rainforest at Cerrejón. We find new plant families, large, smooth-margined leaves and a three-tiered structure of forest floor, understory shrubs and high canopy."

Jaramillo and other boffins from the parent Smithsonian Institution in the US probed fossilised leaf remains and identified the plant families Araceae, Arecaceae, Fabaceae, Lauraceae, Malvaceae and Menispermaceae - which are apparently "still among the most common neotropical rainforest families".

The scientists say that leaf fossil evidence and the very size of the Titanoboa indicate that the jungles of the Paleocene saw temperatures of 30-32°C, as opposed to the 27°C common in the Colombian rainforest today.

A common goal of global-warming reduction efforts is to limit temperature rises to 2 degrees, though some say this is unachievable and a rise of at least 4 degrees is inevitable. The well-known Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report of 2007 predicted a rise of 3 degrees by 2100.

The new research could mean that - assuming the warming arrives on schedule - that the world's jungles will not turn to desert as is sometimes expected. Rather, a picture more like that of 65 million years ago might emerge.

"We're going to have a novel climate where it is very hot and very wet. How tropical forest species will respond to this novel climate, we don't know," senior Smithsonian boffin S Joseph Wright told the IPCC at the time.

Fortunately nobody seems to be suggesting that global warming will see the return of enormous 40-foot constrictors. Even the humdrum modern snakes of today's rainforest occasionally perform gut-busting feats such as scoffing entire jaguars, so Titanoboa would presumably have regarded a human being as merely a light snack.

It's possible that the lush superwarm jungles of the globally-warmed future might be a bit less diverse than today's, however, as it seems that the old-time ones were.

"We were very surprised by the low plant diversity of this rainforest. Either we are looking at a new type of plant community that still hadn't had time to diversify, or this forest was still recovering from the events that caused the mass extinction 65 million years ago," says Scott Wing, another Smithsonian scientist involved in the studies.

The scientists say their latest research will be published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal shortly.


"Drought" in some parts of Australia -- such as Melbourne -- is more a failure of "Green" governments than a failure of nature

ENOUGH water to supply Melbourne's needs for a month has been lost because of the Brumby Government's failure to live up to its own water-wise campaign. As Victorians endure tough restrictions, more than 30 billion litres of water was lost into Port Phillip Bay because there wasn't pumping capacity on the Yarra River to save it, the Herald Sun reports.

Thirty billion litres of water would:

* WATER our city parks for 60 years.

* SUPPLY Melbourne's water needs for a month.

* IRRIGATE 24,000ha of farmland.

* FILL 12,000 Olympic-sized pools.

Angry ratepayers, farmers and the Opposition all slammed this failure.

About 30 billion litres flowed down the Yarra River and overflowed from O'Shannassy Reservoir before it could be pumped to Sugarloaf Reservoir because the pump is limited to 1 billion litres a day.

Opposition Leader Ted Baillieu blamed penny-pinching by the State Government. "John Brumby spends plenty of taxpayers' money on TV ads lecturing Victorians about water use, but can't find the money to upgrade vital water pumps at Yering Gorge," he said.

Victorian Ratepayers Association president Jack Davis said it was a shame to waste even a drop of water when it was so desperately needed. "How many people are installing water tanks at their own expense ... while opportunities like this are missed," he said.

Victorian Farmers Federation president Andrew Broad said the water would have translated into millions of dollars in productivity among farmers. "When you consider that they are taking 75 billion litres down the north-south pipeline it would have been a whole lot cheaper to harvest this water."

Jan Beer, from a lobby group against the north-south pipeline, said it was "disgraceful" that the water flowed out to sea. "Why spend $1 billion to build the pipeline when they can catch the water in their own backyards?" she said.

Melbourne Water manager of water supply John Woodland said O'Shannassy was Victoria's smallest reservoir and didn't take much rain to fill. "When it spills, it spills into the Yarra and we pick as much of this as we can further down the river and pump it into Sugarloaf Reservoir."

Water Minister Tim Holding said Melbourne Water was taking as much as it was legally entitled to and protecting the health of the Yarra at the same time.


Comment on the above by Andrew Bolt

Oi, you! Yes, you under the umbrella. Splash over here and check out Melbourne Water's website. Look at its latest excuse for not building the dam that would have spared Melbourne its insane - and insanely expensive - water restrictions. "Why aren't we building another dam?" it burbles, shamed at last into defending its Labor masters' failure to build what we needed years ago.

"Unfortunately, we cannot rely on this kind of rainfall like we used to." We can't? Stick your head outside, sunshine. See those clouds? We've had a monster September for rain over our catchments - falls 60 per cent above average - and now check the latest forecast. More rain and showers for days.

No water for a new dam? Watch the last excuse for the Government's mismanagement of our water supplies being washed away. Good god, the water now flowing to waste in the sea, thanks to that bungling.

Check this time the flood warnings for the Yarra. Which government failed to put in bigger pumps that could have grabbed another 30 billion litres of this to fill our Sugarloaf Reservoir - or enough water to supply Melbourne for at least three weeks?

Check the O'Shannassy reservoir upstream, overflowing for almost two months now. Which government failed to make this puny dam bigger, not just to catch more of this water, but to help save the Upper Yarra from flooding? Check also the Glenmaggie Reservoir on the Macalister, which is now so full that it's had to tip out as much as 40 billion litres these past few days. That's as much water wasted as Melbourne uses in a whole month.

You see, the Glenmaggie is not only another reservoir that's too small, but it's even been left unconnected to Melbourne's water network.

Of course, decades ago, back when dams were no sin, there were government plans to build a bigger dam farther up the Macalister, and build a short diversion so the water could fill Melbourne's biggest reservoir, the still-two-thirds empty Thomson. But it wasn't done, was it? Dams were suddenly evil. Hear it from the Government's Water Resources Strategy Committee, which in 2003 ruled out any new dam because of its "unacceptable environmental and social cost". Or read it in the Government's 2006 "water strategy", which called dams "no longer ... socially acceptable".

In fact, so unacceptable were they to this green-maddened Government that it turned the dam reservation on Gippsland's Mitchell River into a national park. And, just to make doubly sure, it then declared the Mitchell a "heritage river" never to be dammed.

How the Government must now be praying the Mitchell does not again flood, too, this spring. Now that would really drive home to voters the vast stupidity of this irrational ban. Why so stupid? Because the Mitchell flows so strongly that a Melbourne University water resources audit published in the Federal Government's Natural Resources Atlas in 2000 estimated a new dam there could harvest 435 billion litres a year - or about all the water Melbourne now takes from its current 10 dams.

Indeed, in one flood two years ago, more water went to waste down the undammed Mitchell than Melbourne used last year. And how much would this dam cost? $1.4 billion, admitted Minister for (No) Water Tim Holding last year.

Let me draw a comparison that will put this blur of figures into sharp focus. To avoid a new dam, the Brumby Government will now build a $3.5 billion desalination plant to each year use expensive power to turn sea water into 150 billion litres of drinking water. That's right: the Government's plan will produce just a third of the water of a Mitchell dam, but at three times the price. Which, incidentally, is why your water bills are now going up, up, up.

What a price we're paying for the Government's green faith - and ours. Billions more for less water.

Even that isn't the full catastrophe. To "save" the environment from thirsty Victorians, the Government for years preached that all we needed do to survive its man-made shortage of water was to use less of the stuff. So to "save" a river, the Government vandalised a city. Its harsh water bans killed gardens, closed public fountains, shut ovals and forced home owners and councils to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on rainwater tanks and drought-resistant lawns instead.

Don't buy the excuse that all this is the fault not of blind politicians but of a never-before-seen drought, or even of "global warming". There's actually been no warming of the globe for eight years, and this drought is no worse than some others we've suffered in even the short time of white settlement.

This is, after all, the land of "drought and flooding rain", and the real story is this: Melbourne has grown by a million more people in the 26 years since we built our last dam. But rather than look for water, we went to water instead, and fell prey to a green faith that has left this city on water bans, even when our rivers are in flood and rains we were told had gone once more fall on our roofs.



For more postings from me, see DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.


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