The extraordinary cost of the shift to green energy

Climate change purity is expensive

The extraordinary cost of the shift to green energyBig infrastructure plans in Canada, the United States and the European Union place a lot of emphasis on renewable energy displacing coal, gas and petroleum. Yet little attention is given to the one vital element that makes all these ‘green’ energy transition plans for power plants and vehicles viable: practical and affordable energy storage. Solar…

Covid-19 and the rise of the Fearful State

Is it ethical to frighten people for the 'greater good'?

Covid-19 and the rise of the Fearful StateLong before David Attenborough brought his soothing voice to the explication of animal behaviour for the BBC Life series, the North American television public had been introduced to the majesty and oddities of the natural world through Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom. I remember lying on my stomach in my grandparent’s living room watching programs…

Switching to electric vehicles won’t avert climate change

More greenhouse gases are released when making an EV than a comparable internal combustion engine

Switching to electric vehicles won’t avert climate changeI’m not a climate skeptic. As an environmental scientist/engineer by training, I think climate change is real. But it’s like every other environmental issue: a more-or-less routine engineering challenge, rather than a world-altering disaster justifying the fever-dreams of the radical greens. I am, however, an electric vehicle skeptic. Or, more broadly, I’m skeptical that electric…

It’s not easy being green but we can get there

Wind and solar power won't magically eliminate the threats to our environment

It’s not easy being green but we can get thereBaruch Spinoza, a 17th-century philosopher, said the future and anything we can say about it is imaginary. He was right. Despite our best efforts to foresee what the future will bring, we really don’t know what is forthcoming until the future becomes the present. The challenge of climate change has focused our attention on what…

Short-term gains on the crude oil market as climate change looms

The IEA concedes rising oil demand at odds with its call to end new oil, gas and coal funding

Short-term gains on the crude oil market as climate change loomsThe International Energy Agency (IEA) is torn between two conflicting ends. On one hand, it’s grappling with climate change issues; on the other, it sees rising oil prices. For now, the two ends seem to be running parallel but not converging. Oil demand is rising fast, as are prices, reaching multi-year highs on Friday. Brent…

Researchers attempting to document 30,000 years of climate history

Braved cold and wind during the first phase of a research effort to document changes atop Mt. Logan

Researchers attempting to document 30,000 years of climate historyA pair of University of Alberta researchers led a research expedition that braved nearly three weeks of unrelenting cold and wind during the first phase of a monumental multi-pronged research effort to document changes atop the world’s largest mountain. Alison Criscitiello, director of the U of A’s Canadian Ice Core Lab and researcher in the Faculty of Science,…

The danger of ignoring the costs of Canadian climate policy

Consumers, taxpayers, shareholders of Canadian firms and workers will all pay the price for Canada’s cost-insensitive climate policy

The danger of ignoring the costs of Canadian climate policyBy Jock Finlayson and Denise Mullen Business Council of B.C. Your home’s natural gas furnace is on the fritz. You need heat, so you must replace it. There are several options: electric baseboards, electric radiant flooring, a heat pump, or direct gas-fired space heaters. It may also be feasible to use your existing wood fireplace…

OPEC+, IEA clash over future of fossil fuels

IEA wants all investments in new developments to stop. Others warn that could lead to $200 a barrel oil

OPEC+, IEA clash over future of fossil fuelsThe Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and their allies in OPEC+ are on a collision course with energy watchdog International Energy Agency (IEA) on at least two counts. Last month, the Paris-based IEA delivered the starkest warning yet on fossil fuels, saying the exploitation and development of new oil and gas fields must stop this…

Conservative climate plan falls into familiar traps

Remarkably similar to pretty much every past plan, whether dressed in conservative or liberal phrasing

Conservative climate plan falls into familiar trapsA lot has been written in Canada about the recently-revealed Conservative Plan to Combat Climate Change. Most of that (including my own first take) focused on the carbon tax part of the Conservative Party of Canada’s plan, which is just another rhetorically packaged tax-and-rebate scheme that has become the norm for carbon-tax implementation. Governments levy…

Is a new world order on the horizon for the energy sector?

The IEA lays out recommendations for what needs to happen, and when, to transform the global economy from one dominated by fossil fuels

Is a new world order on the horizon for the energy sector?The world must act quickly on climate change, says the International Energy Agency. To meet the net-zero emission targets and limit the worst impacts of climate change, a sprint is absolutely essential, says the Paris-based IEA, the energy watchdog for the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Reaching net-zero emissions will require a huge…
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