Carbon News 15/12/14: smoke and mirrors

English goes silent on carbon deficit costs

The Government is refusing to discuss what impact a 2030 carbon deficit will have on the economy – despite warnings from Treasury. Finance Minister Bill English has confirmed to Carbon News that Treasury is predicting carbon prices of between $10 and $165 a tonne between 2021 and 2030, but he has not answered questions on what that will cost New Zealand.

Climate expert: It’s all smoke and mirrors, Mr Groser

New Zealand is using smoke and mirrors to meet its 2020 emissions reduction target, when it could get there by using clean heating and transport technologies, says one of our leading scientists. Climate Change Minister Tim Groser told Radio New Zealand National this morning that while New Zealand faced some big hurdles in cutting emissions, the country was on target to meet its pledge to cut emissions to 5 per cent below 1990 levels by 2020.

Climate talks off on the rocky road to Paris

A deal struck in Lima between 196 nations today leaves open the possibility of saving the planet from dangerous overheating. But its critics say the prospects of success are now slim.

Fossil fuel probe under way as NZ goes exploring

New Zealand is expanding oil and gas exploration at the same time as Britain probes the likely cost of stranded fossil-fuel assets.

What did the Romans ever do for us? They left a water warning

As all good Monty Python fans know, water technologies feature large in the legacy of benefits left by Roman civilisation.

Carbon trade in Beijing tops 100 million yuan

Carbon trade volume in Beijing has reached 105 million yuan ($NZ21.8 million) since a carbon emissions trading scheme was launched in the city a year ago.

UN launches new coalition to promote renewable energy

The launch of a new coalition spearheaded by the United Nations Environment Programme will focus on boosting renewable energy usage around the world.

Australia takes action on energy market reform

The Australian Government is leading a new focus on reforms to put downward pressure on electricity prices and give Australian consumers greater power over their energy bills.

Our new energy mix is a game-changer, says India

While the political spotlight focused on the world’s two biggest polluters − China and the US − in the run-up to the Lima climate talks, pressure is mounting on India to set emissions targets to help to prevent the planet overheating.

Bank of England probes risk of fossil fuel assets

In a move that’s likely to cause consternation in some of the world’s most powerful corporate boardrooms, the Bank of England has disclosed that it is launching an inquiry into the risks fossil fuel companies pose to overall financial stability.

On the web: Meet the world’s greatest climate wrecker … Australia

  • Welcome to Planet Oz: Julie Bishop’s speech to Lima climate talks
  • Change of heart: Abbott government commits $200m to Green Climate Fund
  • Cutting carbon a good business opportunity, private sector told
  • EU court nails Austria, Poland over breaches to green energy rules
  • Scots’ renewable energy offsets a million tonnes of CO2 every month
  • How to harvest energy from everything that moves

Eels worth the effort, says environment watchdog

New Zealand needs to put more effort into protecting long-fin eels, or tuna, says the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment.

Spotlight turns on roadway illumination

Local authorities are out to halve the energy and cost involved in lighting public roads.

Spot NZUs hit two-year high

Carbon ended the week slightly down, though prices remain above $5 with spot NZUs closing at $5.40 on CommTrade, OMFinancial reports.

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16 thoughts on “Carbon News 15/12/14: smoke and mirrors”

  1. Siiigh! There’s no way I can justify even $360 (let alone $500pa) for a sub to Carbon News, I don’t have any taxable income I can write it off to. Pity, it seems likely there are a lot of interesting articles lurking behind that paywall, but we lesser mortals can only sup on scraps from the table.

    Hopefully the movers & shakers are reading them and taking them to heart.

  2. Today in Auckland the sun has made brief appearances ending 9 days of continuous overcast with drizzle, showers and two bouts of rain. As this is twice as long as the previous worst weather for solar generation, I wondered what battery capacity would have been required to get by without importing any power – this is “summer” of course. The figures are rather different from winter! Two fine days, December 2 & 3, generated 75 kWh total for comparison.

    With nominal 5 kW system and two persons:

    Total generation over 9 overcast days 128.33 kWh
    Worst day: generated 9.17 kWh
    Imports over 24 hrs, (chiefly at night) and solar usage on the same day exactly matched generation – a rare coincidence.

    A mere 6 kWh of stored power (cutting it fine) could have resulted in no imports during this 9 day period. Solar power used during this period (42.33 kWh) went to computing, cooking, shredding tree branches, lawnmowing, chain sawing, water heating each day, refrigeration and laundry

    The worst 24 hrs in winter would have required 22 kWh of back-up and maybe nearly 40 kWh over 5 days. Use of heat pump with visitors present took most of the power.

    1. But you did not need your own exclusive domestic energy storage for your own dwelling’s continued power supply did you. You had a grid connection. When the sun shines, less power taken from the grid, and power generation on the grid will reduce in order of marginal cost of generation. Unless hydro stocks are very low, that will mean fossil fuel generators first.
      Incidents of low and high marginal cost of generation also spur the market for power storage as it promotes opportunities to buy low and sell high.
      The wonderful breakthroughs that are somewhere in the future are not actually needed yet. They are however in development, and the existing grid scale power storage systems have been with us for many years.

        1. If your dispatchable fossil fuel capacity has headroom above your intermittent renewable capacity, then there is no renewables driven requirement for energy storage. Until so much intermittent renewable capacity has been added that this headroom is lost, you have nothing to be concerned about.
          Energy storage is a good thing to have, the many pumped storage plants built around the world before any solar or wind farms of any significance is a clear testimony to that.
          The common claim however that solar and wind power need battery storage is just plain rubbish.

  3. The NZ Herald has done it gain:

    In fact, our climate changes day by day, so what’s all the fuss about?
    As for blaming carbon dioxide emissions for alleged global warming, I don’t believe it for a moment – and nor do hundreds of highly reputable climate scientists worldwide. It is, I fear, just another ploy by scientists to attract more funding from sponsors and politicians to extract more money from the populace. It’s a rort.

    So who the heck is Gareth George? And how come the Editors of the Herald give him space, any space, to troll his utter complete tosh. This guy truly lost his marbles as it would seem.

    It seems he had been producing this sort of nonsense for a while:

    1. Who is Gareth George? A grumpy old man who lost his marbles years ago but who comes out of retirement every now and then to write grumpy opinion pieces on all manner of topics mostly about which he has no idea. Occasionally he gets it right – like the broken clock is right twice a day. But for the main part he acts as a sort of mouth piece for the whited headed grumpy brigade (of which the TCDC is well represented I’m sad to say. Your man in Coromandel is a breath of fresh air, but as for the rest of them! I was at a meeting the other day and the number of grumpy “santa clauses” (white hair, white beard, fat belly) sitting round the table making decisions on the part of the whole community! Unbelievable! This is the democratic process??)

  4. Garth George is just another bloviating ignoramus, who not only doesn’t know the difference between weather and climate, but who doesn’t give a damn, because he’ll be comfortably dead before the true scale of the tragedy unfolds.

    Come to think of it, is there such a thing as a young climate change denier?

  5. Garth George used to write a column on the Herald, where he repeatedly spouted the same climate change scepticism. The guy is a total ignoramus. I suppose that is the price we pay for freedom of speech, but it is a heavy price at times.

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