For our next trick – anthropogenic weather change

We know that the climate is changing – the evidence that it is warming is overwhelming – and there is now evidence that the weather is changing. A PNAS published study has shown there is a link between the increased emission of sulphides and other particulates from coal fired power stations in China and stronger cyclones and more precipitation in the mid-latitudes of this planet. Continue reading

One Last Binge

According to the European Union’s statistical agency, Eurostat, the carbon dioxide emissions of the United Kingdom have increased from 2011 to 2012 by 3.9%. This increase has occurred despite all the wind turbines that have been installed, despite all the new cars that burn petrol and diesel more efficiently, despite all the PV panels installed and all the other froth and bubble that the UK government uses to try and stem the tide of greenhouse gases that its nation produces. Continue reading

Environmental Trade Wars

The European Union and China are in dispute about photo-voltaic panels made in China and sold in the EU. The EU complains that the panels, which produce electricity during daylight, are being dumped ion the European market, being sold at prices that are significantly below cost and proposes to impose a duty of 47% on imported panels from China. China protests its innocence to the dumping charge and claims that any duty would hurt consumers. Continue reading

The Effect on Climate of coal, diesel and wood burning

I have written a great deal about my views that particulates are a significant contribution to the changes that our climate are experiencing than we understand, and my instincts seem to be borne out by research published in the Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres.  If the research has drawn the correct conclusions, then particulates from wood burning, diesel engines and coal burning (which create pure carbon in the form of soot) have twice more impact on our climate than previously estimated. Continue reading

We will face a bad encounter with the two degrees of climate change

In 2007 despite all the talking, targets and emission trading schemes, the emissions of industrialised countries rose by 1%. This may not sound much but those emissions, particularly carbon dioxide, will be around for a very long time. The fact that 2008 might see is small drop in emissions does not bring us any hope. It is simply that we have turned the tap down a very small amount, but the atmosphere continues to fill with long lasting greenhouse gases. Continue reading

The by-products of burning coal

I have written about the copious amounts of carbon dioxide that coal fired power stations push into the air – far greater amounts per unit of electrical energy than any other form of electrical generation. However, the coal pollution is not limited to carbon dioxide, which warms up our planet. There are other dangerous by products of coal burning. Continue reading

Mundra’s new coal power station – built with “green” subsidies

How do you get to a position when public money and international programmes devised to reduce carbon emissions is earmarked to build and continuously subsidise a 4000 megawatt power station that burns coal? The answer lies in the advice that you get.

If you go to someone for advice, they will advise what they know. A physician will advise you to take medicine, a surgeon to undergo surgery, a physiotherapist to exercise; a lawyer will advise you about a legal solution and an economist about an economic solution.

Advisers perceive that the only solution there is to any given problem is that which is within their own expertise. The solution that an expert proffers will be the best the expert knows about, but that does not mean that it is the best solution.

If you look to bankers economists and the like for a solution to the problem of reducing carbon emissions you will end up with what looks credible, seems workable but in practice proves not a solution to the problem of how to reduce carbon, but a way for the opportunistic to make money in a rapacious and unscrupulous market.

When the solution is adopted and enacted by politicians the solution becomes set in stone, no matter how much damage it does. Reputations are at stake, and this makes politicians and civil servants who have approved these failed programmes close their eyes to the environmental reality of them. Indeed genuine solutions are not allowed to stand in the way of their beloved trade and cap schemes.

The carbon cap and trade schemes are blindly supported by the European Union and the United Nations. We have been told by bankers such as Mr Nicholas Stern that these emission trading schemes are the way to reduce emissions. It is now apparent that these schemes are actually contributing to emissions throughout the world.

The case of what is happening in Mundra, in Gujarat in India is a case in point. The Tata company will build a coal fired power station there, which will be completed in 2011. It will use technology that will reduce emissions compared to a conventional coal powered power station by around 20%. Under the curious rules that have been devised following the Kyoto Protocol, this is classed as a source of clean energy, notwithstanding that the emissions will be double those from a similarly sized natural gas power station.

Being classified as a clean power project Tata will obtain $450 million in soft loans from the World Bank (the same World Bank that Mr Stern worked for) and it will be able to sell under the cap and trade scheme carbon credits to power stations elsewhere in the world for around $60 million a year, which is quite a comfortable income for a carbon credit that arises because a coal fired power station is being built.

If the project used technology that captured and sequestrated the carbon dioxide emissions then it should qualify for soft loans and should be allowed to trade its carbon credits. However, this project will not do that – it will create huge amounts of emissions, but everyone at the World Bank and in governments across the world are pretending that this is a carbon saving scheme.

India needs power. Genuinely green power is expensive because of an uneven playing field; those that burn coal do not pay the true cost of their emissions.

We cannot stop coal power stations being built in India but we do not need to facilitate them with soft loans and fictitious subsidies from failed emission trading schemes. The $460 loan would be better employed building wind farms, putting in microgeneration and solar power in the Gujarat region. The $60 million a year in carbon credits would be better used to install solar panels in Gujarat.

India will need, it is estimated, an additional160,000 megawatts of power to come on line in the next decade. That is another forty plants the size of that which will be built in Mundra each emitting at least 25 million tonnes of carbon each year with the aid of World Bank soft loans and additional income form selling fictitious carbon savings.

If we go to bankers and business people for advice about carbon emission reduction can we be surprised that the result is a subsidised coal fired power station built in India from which money will be made?

Air pollution causes deep vein thrombosis and other problems

Particulate air pollution seems to be even worse for you than we previously thought. I have already written in these posts about the problems that biomass pollution can cause and I have also written about the link between increased carbon dioxide levels and poor health and cancers.

Now I have to add to this somewhat miserable and depressing list by warning that researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health led by Dr Andrea Baccarelli have found evidence that deep vein thrombosis is linked to air pollution – yes air pollution, not just air travel. Continue reading

Damage we suffer from fossil fuel burning both seen and unseen

the Parthenon


Environmentalists today associate burning fossil fuel with carbon dioxide emissions, which in turn are associated with climate change and global warming. This is a relatively new association, although the theory of global warming has been around for over a hundred years.


Before the greenhouse effect took root in the popular imagination the main effect of burning fossil fuel that we understood was air pollution caused by burning coal and coal gas for electrical power and heat energy, and diesel and petrol in engines for transport. Continue reading