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Monthly Archives: August 2016

Climate change – all talk but little action

Rio 2016

The urgent need to address climate change was in the news last week.  Global temperature records continue to fall, with 2016 shaping up to be the hottest year on record; with every chance of exceeding the 1.5°C upper limit agreed by world leaders in Paris less than a year ago.  …

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May’s empty fracking bribes are not worth the risk

Fracking Bribe

One of the reasons fracking took off in the USA is that landowners also own the mineral rights beneath their land.  So when energy companies decided that oil and gas prices were high enough to make fracking possible, they had to pay landowners directly for the rights. The UK is …

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Forget GDP – it is per capita GDP that indicates our demise


Across the Western World there is a growing sense that something is wrong.  The economic ‘recovery’ that we have experienced since 2008 feels for all the world like a depression.  Despite official GDP figures showing (at least some) growth, more people have been forced to turn to foodbanks (UK) and …

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UK energy crisis – right diagnosis; wrong prescription


Britain’s energy industry is dying.  That’s the stark conclusion reached by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard in the Telegraph: “We have let matters drift for so long that half of our nuclear reactors will be phased out over the next nine years with nothing ready to replace them. North Sea oil and gas …

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The chink in the left’s climate change armour?

Nuclear power

For the best part of 40 years, the climate debate has split across a broadly left (liberal)/right (conservative) divide in which the left argue that we need urgent action to prevent runaway global warming while the right questions the validity of the evidence.  Meanwhile, businesses and households carry on with …

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Doing the same thing in the hope of a different outcome

Bank of England

It is doubtful that Britain’s economic woes are entirely the result of Brexit.  In the ordinary course of the business cycle, we were overdue for a recession anyway.  Add to that the spectacular current account deficit and vast public borrowing that resulted from Osborne’s ill-conceived and ideologically-driven attempt to run …

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UK Government urged to address the looming energy crunch

Out of power

Tony Lodge from the right wing think-tank the Centre for Policy Studies has urged Teresa May to wake up to the desperate state of the British energy industry: “I spoke alongside [the new Secretary of State, Greg] Clark in 2009 at the Conservative Party Conference on a platform appropriately titled …

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Why does this brewer want higher oil prices?

One too many

Heineken Chief Executive Jean-Francois van Boxmeer has told MSM Money that he is “praying for higher oil prices”.  But why should a brewery – albeit the third largest in the world – desire an increase in the price of a commodity that appears to have little to do with its …

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Trump more progressive than UK government on fracking?

Donald Trump

US Republican candidate Donald Trump has been widely attacked for his environmental credentials; including his professed support for the fracking industry.  However, in an interview for 9News Trump has set out a position that is more democratic than the current policy position of the UK government. While thousands of protestors …

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