Why we do not need a Green Investment Bank

When the Green Investment Bank idea was announced I was puzzled. The only thing that I could learn from the United Kingdom’s government’s publicity about it was that it would have an awful lot of money. I did not understand what it would do and how it would do it and subsequent announcements by Ministers shed no light but rather added to my confusion. I suspect that I was not alone in this because we are still no clearer on what the Green Investment Bank would actually do. Continue reading

The Sustainable Development Commission comes to an end; will anyone notice?

You might not have heard of the Sustainable Development Commission and if you have not heard of them you should know that they will not be around for much longer. The SDC is being abolished because the UK Government is cutting off the £3 million a year that the Commission uses out of taxpayers’ money. Three million pounds is quite a lot of money in anyone’s currency. The SDC’s total budget was £4.5 million and the remaining £1.5 million was paid by the developed administrations so I assume that the savings will be the whole £4.5 million. What vital role did the SDC play in our lives? Continue reading

Manningham Buller, Chilcot and reasons for the war against Iraq

The Chilcot Inquiry rumbles on and almost lost in the news was the rather important evidence given by the former head of MI5, Ms Manningham-Buller on 20th July. She said that going to war in Iraq increased the terror threat in the United Kingdom, she had to ask for her budget to be doubled to meet the increased terror threat, the war had “radicalised” young Muslims and opened the door for Osama Bin Laden to operate in Iraq. All this was made known to Mr Blair at the time and it actually should not come as a surprise to anyone. Continue reading

Making savings in climate change expenditure

Every Department of the United Kingdom government has to make savings. It is important to understand that this is a necessary process to secure future prosperity. I do not know (and frankly no one knows for sure) whether the Labour plan to spend our way out of recession or the Coalition plan to make savings is the best plan for the nation. Continue reading

Courage and Cowardice in Afghanistan

It is easy to waste money; governments of all persuasions all over the world do it, not intentionally, but usually out of vanity, lack of intelligence or lack of understanding. For example Afghanistan has received $36 billion of aid in the past ten years. That money, if wisely spent, should have transformed that backward country into a wealthy secure place. There are, the United Nations believes, 24 million people living in Afghanistan. $36 billion ought to be capable of providing them with a decent infrastructure, education and security. If you factor in the billions spent by NATO on maintaining armed forces in Afghanistan it is hard for me at least to understand why that nation is not today advanced, prosperous and secure. Continue reading

The world’s worst environmental vandalism

For the first time in three months it seems that the Deepwater oil rig is no longer leaking crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico. This episode has had all the features of a melodrama with a tragic ending. There have been cover ups, lies, incompetence, political grandstanding, recriminations and generally a simplistic view of the financial and environmental damage done and the sufferings caused with an even more simplistic misunderstanding of the responsibilities. Continue reading

Property Assessed Clean Energy

Being able to get a loan for a clean energy installation is important. Many of the people who want to install solar panels, for example, have not got the ready cash, but would install them if they could use the savings that they achieve to go towards the capital cost of the solar installation. Continue reading