Friday, 19 April 2013

Carbon Fleecing

The Inaugural Golden Fleece Award – for Flagrant Fleecing of Community Resources by Viv Forbes

 The Carbon Sense Coalition has awarded its Inaugural Golden Fleece Award to Kevin Rudd and coal industry leaders for “flagrant fleecing of community savings in futile ‘research’ on Carbon Capture & Sequestration – a costly and complex process designed to capture and bury carbon dioxide gas produced by burning carbon fuels such as coal, oil and gas”. 

It is obviously possible, in an engineering sense, to collect, separate, compress, pump and pipe gases, so new “research” is largely a waste of money. Engineers know how to do these things, and their likely costs. But only foolish green zealots would think of spending billions to bury a harmless, invisible, life-supporting gas in hopes of cooling the climate some time in the century ahead.


About 2.5 tonnes of carbon dioxide are produced for every tonne of coal burnt in a power station. To capture, compress and bury it could take at least 30% of the electricity produced, greatly increasing the cost of the limited amount of electricity left for sale - more coal used, increased electricity costs, for ZERO measurable benefits 

We have come to expect stupidity from politicians, but coal industry leaders who agreed to waste money on this should be sued by shareholders for negligence. Maybe they were just drooling at all the extra coal they would sell in order to produce the same electricity? 

Kevin Rudd wins this award for “a Flagrant Fleece of $400 million taken from tax payers to fund the fatuous Global Carbon Capture and Storage Institute.” There is little to show for the millions already spent except a lot of receipts for high class salaries, consultants, travel, entertainment and “operational expenses”. 

Pumping gases underground is sensible if it brings real benefits such as using waste gases to drive oil recovery from declining oil fields.  

Normally, however, CCS will just produce more expensive electricity.  

This result is not needed as politicians have already invented dozens of ways of doing just that.


  1. They should get another Shonkey Donkey Award for their carbon pricing/ carbon trading policy which is now revealed as a complete disaster. They set the price at $23 a tonne but plan to revert to an international trading price in 2015 in the hope their set price would increase or at least hold. The latest European trade price is $3 a tonne. That will bring in all the money they need to pay for all their promised education and disability reforms.
    Guess they don't have to worry much as by 2015 thewy will hopefully be long gone.

    1. Not only that, John, the $23/tonne goes up on the next two July 1sts to $25 and $27/tonne respectively.

      In January I wrote Green Gillard Government's tax on CO2 goes from BAD to Worse and the European price had then fallen to " below E5 ($6.30) a tonne for the first time. The European price is now less than a quarter of Australia's fixed carbon price and has lost 70 per cent of its value since mid-2011.

      This week "European Union politicians have rejected a plan to prop up the world's biggest carbon market, sending it plunging to a new record low (2.63 euros a tonne) and raising questions about its survival. (Link)

      The Al Gore backed Chicago Climate Exchange price failed and they closed the market. The European price has fallen from €6 in January to €2-3 in April.

      There may be a total collapse whilst our businesses are being slugged $23-25-27/tonne.

  2. Tim Wilson of the IPA had an opinion article published in The Australian yesterday, Carbon market flaws evident
    "Emissions trading is supposedly a market system based on supply and demand. But behind the jargon, trading schemes are just government-mandated markets influenced by political interests. When too few companies are required to buy emissions permits, or too many permits are allocated, or both, the price collapses.

    The capacity for political manipulation ensures carbon markets never deliver the certainty their supporters claim. That might not matter if they cut emissions, but they fail there too.

    Technocrats advocate for trading schemes in theory because it is the most efficient way to price emissions, in practice they can be manipulated like any other regulation.

    The European parliament's action this week to avoid increasing taxes on households has exposed the problems of emissions trading. Europe should abandon its structurally flawed scheme, and Australia should learn from their mistakes and follow."

    1. The Carbon Dioxide Credits fraud is spearheaded by Goldman Sachs and a very small number of other very rich organisations.
      Turnbull was President of Goldman Sachs in Australia and he probably received a very generous share portfolio when he left. I believe that this is why he so passionately supports the Carbon Dioxide Trading Scheme.
      It could very well set him up for life. this statement below comes from a site titled @BarnabyisRight

      " Malcolm Turnbull, the former Goldman Sachs Australia chairman, named co-defendant in a $450+ million lawsuit, and beneficiary of a “confidential” settlement made on his behalf by his former employer, believes so strongly in Australia having an emissions trading scheme for a very good reason indeed.

      But I personally harbour the gravest of doubts that “saving the planet” has anything whatsoever to do with it…

      Your humble blogger has spoken with a number of persons within the Coalition, in seeking to draw widespread public attention to the above.

      I believe that the public has a right to be fully informed about all the details of Mr Turnbull’s long involvement with – and possible obligations to – the international banking giant and carbon dioxide derivatives trading advocate, Goldman Sachs."

    2. Near Weyburn, Saskatchewan, Canada there is a carbon sequestration project running since 2000 that has been pumping underground 6,000 tonnes per day and claims to have sequestered up to January 2011 16 million tonnes of carbon. The injected gas is used to help squeeze more oil all out of old wells.
      But according to this article, Land fizzing like soda pop: farmer says CO2 injected underground is leaking, all is not well.

      " But in 2005, the Kerrs began noticing algae blooms, clots of foam and multi-coloured scum in two ponds at the bottom of a gravel quarry on their land. Sometimes, the ponds bubbled. Small animals — cats, rabbits and goats — were regularly found dead a few metres away.

      The water, said Jane Kerr, came out of the ground carbonated.

      "It would fizz and foam."

      Then there were the explosions.

      "At night we could hear this sort of bang like a cannon going off," said Jane Kerr, 58. "We'd go out and check the gravel pit and, in the walls, it (had) blown a hole in the side and there would be all this foaming coming out of this hole."

      "Just like you shook up a bottle of Coke and had your finger over it and let it spray," added her husband.

      Alarmed, the couple left their farm and moved to Regina.

      "It was getting too dangerous to live there," Cameron Kerr said.

      He said provincial inspectors did a one-time check of air quality. Eventually, the Kerrs paid a consultant for a study.

      Paul Lafleur of Petro-Find Geochem found carbon dioxide concentrations in the soil last summer that averaged about 23,000 parts per million — several times those typically found in field soils. Concentrations peaked at 110,607 parts per million.

      Lafleur also used the mix of carbon isotopes he found in the gas to trace its source.

      "The ... source of the high concentrations of CO2 in the soils of the Kerr property is clearly the anthropogenic CO2 injected into the Weyburn reservoir," he wrote."

  3. Peter, re your comments above, we are all entitled to our points of view, whether that be on sport, the GBR, climate change, taxing CO2 emissions ........ and Malcolm Turnbull.

    You and I would agree on a lot of things, but certainly not on the continuing blogosphere hate campaign against Malcolm Turnbull from poorly informed blog hosts. The elder Boston Bomber hosted a ranting blog, there are a zillion out there. I believe in free speech and can't think of any way of mitigating against nutters spreading their gospel via their blog sites, and influencing others who are susceptible. More's the pity.

    So by all means criticise Turnbull for his policy views, but not for the fact that he is rich, successful and influential. personally, I am pretty neutral about him, but as he is undoubtedly one of the most intelligent and articulate people in public life in Australia, I hope that his future demonstration of loyalty will win me over.

    Cheers al

    1. I am not critical of how rich or influential he is. I am critical of
      past positions that he has held or been involved in that seem to influence what his policies are in relation to the global warming issue in particular.
      I am also a bit concerned with his involvement in several very large businesses that he was involved in in varying capacities that went bankrupt leaving many people with nothing because they lost everything.

      The involvement to varying capacities in Onetel, HIH, FAI and OzEmail back room dealing makes one a bit cautious.

      The man certainly is smart, sometimes perhaps too smart and it is only opinion that I would not like to see him leading the country. With Turnbull as leader of the country I think that things would be much the same as they are under Gillard, the only difference would be the name of the party that he would lead. He did state on TV one night that he had considered joining the Labor Party instead of the Liberal Party.

      It would be better for everybody if there was no parties.
      A letter that I have from that Federal Govt confirms that Political parties are not mentioned in the Australian Constitution and there is no provision in the Australian Constitution for any Political Party or any other organisation to select the leader of the country.
      The original intent of the Constitution when it was drawn up was that we should elect individuals who represented the people who elected them (not represent Parties as they now do) and by a majority vote of the elected members in the Parliament they were to elect a leader of the Government.
      The Constitution is silent on what the leader was to be called.

      There has never been any amendment to the Constitution that allows a Political Party to rule the country or appoint the leader and as we all know, all of our laws etc are supposed to be formulated from the provisions and restrictions contained within the Constitution. This is why I do not believe in any Political Parties and support only true Independents as the Constitution intended.
      I defy anybody to show me and the people of this country where in the Australian Constitution it allows political Parties to rule the country or take the actions that they do in defiance of the Will Of The People.

    2. Peter, I am not an apostle / prosletyser for Malcolm T, and nor am I a rusted on believer in Wiki, unlike one of our arrogant adversaries in another place, another time.

      But I do think this Wiki article on him is pretty reasonable, and worth a look by anyone. Click Here .

      Debates on the Constitution (which rage on interminably on that other site) are not at all my scene.
      Cheers al


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